The event took place from January 20th through January 22nd, 2006. It was open to everyone, including people who don't own a copy of Guild Wars; ArenaNet was distributing public access keys via the Guild Wars website. Gamers who already have an account could access the weekend in the sidebar.
Excerpt from the press release:
- The event will enable players to experience two new professions being introduced in the campaign, the Assassin and the Ritualist. Participants will also be able to try out a number of the skills added to Guild Wars: Factions, including some of the deadly skills of the Assassin and the arcane spells of the spiritual Ritualist. They will also be able to get familiar with the new PvP continent, Battle Isles. Battle Isles will introduce players to new PvP experiences, new and expanded arenas, new quests, and a new explorable area as well.
Further excerpt from the Official Event Page:
The Event Schedule
Start of Event: Friday, January 20th:
- North America: Midnight Pacific Time
- Europe: 8:00 a.m. GMT (09:00 CET)
- Korea: 5:00 p.m. Seoul
Closing Time: January 22nd/23rd:
- North America: Sunday, January 22nd, 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time
- Europe: Monday, January 23rd, 7:59 a.m. GMT (08:59 CET)
- Korea: Monday, January 23rd, 4:50 p.m. Seoul
If you were an existing Guild Wars player, you did not need to acquire an access key for your Guild Wars account. If you were not, two access keys were made available on the Guild Wars homepage.
Mirrored straight from the Official Event Page:
Guild Wars Factions Global Free-For-All PvP Weekend FAQ
- How do I get a key for the Guild Wars Factions Global Free-For-All PvP Weekend?
- We will be providing keys on the official website, www.guildwars.com, starting the afternoon of Friday, January 13th. All gamers are invited to join the event, whether they are a Guild Wars account holder or not. One regional key will be distributed for each of the American and European regions. This means that there's no need to worry about having a separate key for yourself and each friend who wants to play; all players from America will use a single key and all players from Europe will use another single key. The keys will be distributed via the official website, but you're also free to share with friends via email.
- I am a Guild Wars account holder. Do I need to get a key?
- Existing Guild Wars players do not need to acquire a key. They will obtain access to the Guild Wars Factions Global Free-For-All PvP Weekend at the time that it launches. Oh, and players may want to pay close attention to the game world in the days preceding the event; things are changing in many interesting ways.
- GuildWiki Note: For a list of changes, see section "Changes in Tyria" below.
- When can I set up my Guild Wars Factions Global Free-For-All PvP Weekend account?
- Anyone who owns Guild Wars does not need to do anything to activate the new content or to join the event. Those who do not own Guild Wars, or who intend to set up a different account for the Guild Wars Factions Global Free-For-All PvP Weekend, can start account setup upon obtaining the key and they then can return to play at the start of the event.
- Will I have more character slots for the Guild Wars Factions Global Free-For-All PvP Weekend?
- Character slots will remain at four. However, those with an existing PvP character slot are invited to create a new PvP character to try out the new professions: The Assassin or The Ritualist. You are also welcome to use one of the global access keys to create a second account, if you wish.
- How will I get Assassin or Ritualist skills during the Guild Wars Factions Global Free-For-All PvP Weekend?
- You will start with a limited number of skills for the profession that you choose, and you will be able to acquire more skills through the unlocking process based on the gain of Balthazar Faction during PvP gameplay.
- If I unlock Assassin or Ritualist skills during the Guild Wars Factions Global Free-For-All PvP Weekend, will I be able to keep them?
- Yes, you will keep the Assassin or Ritualist skills that you unlock during the event. They will remain in your skill listing, but they will be inactive until you acquire the retail version of Guild Wars Factions. On the other hand, the things you acquire on your normal retail account -- Faction Points, Fame, increases in Rank, Guild Wars Ladder ratings -- would remain on your account.
- If I delete a character to make a Ritualist or an Assassin, will my character be replaced at the end of the Guild Wars Factions Global Free-For-All PvP Weekend?
- No, your character will not be replaced at the end of the event. So be sure you choose carefully and that you are aware that the characters that you create with the Ritualist or Assassin as a part of the profession setup will need to be recreated or "rerolled" after the event.
- Will you be able to merge my Guild Wars Factions Global Free-For-All PvP Weekend account with my existing account?
- No, we will not be able to merge accounts. If you wish to keep your attainments from the Guild Wars Factions Global Free-For-All PvP Weekend event, we heartily recommend that you play on a PvP character slot on an existing Guild Wars account, in order to retain your unlocked skills.
- Will the account that I create for this event be useful in the future?
- The account that you use for the event could be converted into a regular retail account with the purchase of Guild Wars Factions. The account also may be used for subsequent events, as long as you acquire the key that pertains to any future event.
- Will there be future Guild Wars Factions events?
- Yes, definitely! Watch for more events in advance of the release of Guild Wars Factions.
Changes in Tyria
As mentioned above in the FAQ, "players may want to pay close attention to the game world in the days preceding the event; things are changing in many interesting ways.". The following are known changes that happened prior to the event:
- Lion's Arch:
- Acolyte Xishai
- Acolyte Haitan
- Acolyte Yisai
- Competition Arena:
- Team Arena:
- The Amnoon Oasis:
- Tomb of the Primeval Kings:
There was a bug during this event. It could be replicated as follows: take a Prophecies character who has got passed the searing but never been to Lion's Arch. Go to the Guild Hall by clicking the "guild hall" button in the guild window. Then, speak to one of the Alliance Battles people, in order to go to an Alliance Battle. This will now be your last known location. If you click on "leave guild hall" from now on when you are in the guild hall, you will return to the mission location for the alliance battle. You cannot map travel out of the Battle Isles continent, as you don't have Lion's Arch. The only way to escape is to have someone meet you in the guild hall and then both leave the guild hall together by him being the party leader and clicking on the "leave guild hall" button.