You can't always be seated in front of your gaming rig playing Guild Wars 2, so ArenaNet has devised a way to keep players connected to the upcoming MMO via the iPhone, iPod and Android phones.
Anyone who has played a massively multiplayer online game seriously understands the constant craving to be connected. You put off other activities, wait until there is no food in the house at all before going shopping, and in those rare instances when you can pull yourself away you get that horrible anxious feeling comes, like you just know you are missing something amazing.
As Rick Ellis, ArenaNet's tech director puts it, "You shouldn't be wondering what your friends are doing in-game; you should always be connected to them to chat. You should be able to help or otherwise contribute to your guild or the game."
And that's where Guild Wars 2 applications for the iPhone, iPad, iPod and Android phones come in. Shown off during PAX earlier this month, the applications will let players stay connected to in-game chat while not actively playing. It's all thanks to a two-way data connection that allows information to both exit and enter the game. Most MMO operators prefer to keep that a strictly one-way path due to security concerns, but ArenaNet is taking the chance.
More than just chatting, offline players will be able to help out their online friends, locating them on a map and helping to guide them towards quest destinations, cities, and towns. When dynamic events occur on the map, they can act as a first alert system for their guild, rallying the troops without having to be in game waving a flag about.
Is being constantly connected to an MMO a good thing? That's my one concern about this extended experience initiative of ArenaNet's. If you're always connected to the game, what happens to real life?