Guild Wars 2 Queen’s Jubilee update now live; hop on a balloon and join the bloodsport-fuelled celebrations

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Hot air balloons, gladiatorial arena fights and solo boss gauntlets: all the trappings of the real life Jubilees we occasionally put on in here the UK.

Difference is, the Tyrians can enjoy theirs in the knowledge they’re not paying a penny for it. From today, Guild Wars 2 players can celebrate 10 years of Queen Jennah’s rule on NCsoft, who’re doing a remarkably good job in sticking to their ramped up bi-weekly update schedule.

Players wandering the open world will be able to opt-in to catching a hot air balloon to Divinity’s Reach (as if that’s a choice), where they’ll compete in ceremonial combat at the Crown Pavilion, the new arena the bloodthirsty monarch’s had constructed for the two-week event.

After hosting the inaugural celebrations, the mini-zone will pit players, each representing their home racial city, against “mighty representations of humanity’s enemies”. Become a champion of your nation – there doesn’t appear to be a cap on those – and earn access to unique vendors and rewards.

Beyond the Pavilion, the Queen’s Gauntlet offers single combat against bosses with the option of special gambit conditions (and greater winnings to match).

Among the new rewards promised during the event are steampunk-styled Watchwork Mechanisms, used as currency or parts in new crafting recipes, and a Watchwork mini. Check the list below for wider-reaching new features:

  • Account Wallet for Currency: Players can now keep all of their currencies in one wallet that makes dungeon tokens, coins, karma, laurels, Guild Commendations, Fractal Relics, Badges of Honour, gems and glory accessible to any of the characters on their account.
  • PvP Solo Arena: With new Solo Arena, players can join PvP matches in a competitive environment without having to gather a full team or fight against a pre-formed group. The Solo Arena also features its own leaderboard, so that players can earn rank without affecting their Team Arena standings.
  • New Dungeons Bonus Rewards: Now, there’s even more incentive for braving the dungeons of Tyria. Each day, when finishing a unique path for any explorable or story dungeon, players will receive a bonus reward for completion, improving upon the existing system.
  • Mini-Game Rotation System: Players can take part in the new, daily mini-game rotation that was promised by both of the Captain’s Council candidates in the previous update. The initial rotation includes Sanctum Sprint, Keg Brawl, Southsun Survival and Crab Toss.

Will you be heading back to ol’ Impossible Spires for the event, then?