On the official forums Evan Lesh has come to players asking what we would like to see in Build Templates and how would you like it to work. Players have come out with a flurry of ideas and suggestions as to how it would work and it continues to be a growing discussion. So far the idea has been:
Templates should be flexible on what they contain. Everyone wants something a little different from this feature.
Template switching can be abused in WvW, between dungeon bosses, etc.
Tiered release approach (I feel this feedback is because people want this feature RIGHT MEOW)
UI suggestions are pretty diverse. There are a lot of ways it could be handled, and it touches a LOT of systems in the game.
Fear of inspect / gear-checking by others.
Using real items is more of a ‘load-out’ than a ‘template’. Possibly different systems.
We saw build templates be used in the original Guild Wars with a huge success. Players were able to build templates for their mercenaries and other players on the fly. They could even be linked into the chat to allow anyone the instant ability to look up a template to use it, save it to their own collection of templates and even edit it towards their own needs. Having that ability to change builds with a few minor clicks and be able to really compare builds for theory crafting, all within the game, was a major appeal to the build template feature.
It would undoubtedly be massively useful to any player for Guild Wars 2 but there are some issues to work out for the feature. If we can just swap builds so immediately in sPvP and WvW there could be an issue with team compositions being too fluid and it would be a constant game of teams swapping builds in order to get a small advantage over the other. This isn’t even including the potential of people assigning builds to macros to just swap at literally one button click despite it being against the rules.
The PvP build panel is a good start but it needs to be condensed further.
There is also the concern about how extensive of this feature would go. There is a vast difference between sPvP and PvE/WvW when it comes to how builds work. Equipment alone is massively different due to the fact that some stats can’t be found in sPvP and the equipment that can be found in PvE not everyone has access to. They could limit it to just traits and skills, like they did in the original Guild Wars, but I get the feeling the guys at ArenaNet want to provide something new and a bit more intuitive.
Regardless it is good to see some open discussion on this feature. I know I have wanted this feature since the release of Guild Wars 2 and now that we have the ability to instantly refresh traits I can see this feature coming soon. I would not be surprised to see this as part of the next Feature Pack.