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January 21, 2014 - 10:07am -- Lee B.

On Friday I got to sit down in a Skype call with the guys at ArenaNet who showed us the new Twisted Marionette and The Great Jungle Wurm. I watched as they played through the content for the first time in the form it was going to come to us. I didn't get all the fine details of the fights, but I did get information to get us all well prepared for these new world Bosses.

Warning: There are some spoilers!

The Twisted Marionette

The Twisted Marionette makes it's appearance known in Lornar's Pass via a massive ship that portals it in to an area where players will have to fight tooth and nail to get to it. Not only for the reason that the Marionette is directly tied up with Scarlet and some fine details about her; but, if players do not stop this construct before it builds enough power? Every single person in Lornar's Pass will get killed by an awesomely huge cannon. No pressure.

Luckily this Boss isn't made to be as difficult as Tequatl or The Great Jungle Wurm, and I was told it could even be handled by a random group of players in overflows if need be. This will make it easier to get the exclusive loot tied with this boss, get some type of unique Fragment that players will want and get just a bit more details on Scarlet and her plans. Coordination and effort is still key, but I am thinking it won't quite require the same amount of pre-planning needed like that of Tequatl. This is especially the case considering the Twister Marionette will not be a permanent addition to the game (unless it comes to the Fractals).

About the fight itself? Well it's going to be a two-phase combat that will split players up five different ways.

Phase One

In the (amazing) paint picture above you will see how the fight goes. Players will be split up and forced to go down the five paths that will lead them an energy generator and - initially - a large red portal. Players will have to take over the ground around the generator and portal, then defend it against all of Scarlet's minions in order to get the portal to charge. This phase is where players can use things like arrow carts, catapults and things of that nature from WvW in order to protect their positions.

Throughout this fight minions will come to harass, or use siege equipment of their own or even aerial bombard players to get them away from the generators.

Once the generator has charged the portal, and it turns green, players will need to split up even further. Some players will have to head on to Phase two, while some have to stay behind to protect the portal to make sure they don't get over-run and force players to retreat from Phase Two.

Phase Two

Here players are teleported to smaller circles where they must destroy unique Champion clockwork minions while the Marionette will be stomping upon players or attacking them. These minions are the only things stopping you from taking out the chains that keep the Marionette up. The interesting thing about these minions is that they imploy new tactics. For instance the one I got to see could not be damage at all from the front, and required one player to hold it's attention while other's attacked it from the sides or the back.

Players will be on a time limit to handle the Champion and power regulators in order to destroy the chains keeping the Marionette up.

Reward and Failure

Loot is handled just like Tequatl: all the reward comes at the end of the fight, and is dependent on how far you get within the fight. Each chain you break gives you a larger reward with the largest reward being tied to killing the Marionette. Destroying the Marionette may just reveal a bit more information about what is going on exactly, too!
Failure to stop the Marionette before the power meter associated with it is filled results in a massive cannon going off and every single player within Lornar's Pass being killed. Even those possibly on the other side of the map.

The Great Jungle Wurm

The Great Jungle Wurm comes to Bloodtide Coast not through any master plan of Scarlet's, but by pure happenstance due to Scarlet's probes. Mayhaps we will discover more about these probes through this, but truly this is a new world boss that plans to stay and cause trouble for a long time. Here the main draw is the conquest, but do not think there are no consequences for failing to defeat this beast.

This boss is meant to be a lot more difficult and need a lot more coordination "like the coordination needed for World v World". Players will gather around three Asuran brothers who will start an escort encounter for each of the brothers which will split a zerg into three groups that lead players to different heads of The Great Wurm. There is no information how well the three groups need to be communicating with each other, but certainly each group will need it's own leader.

The Escort

Each of the Asuran Brothers will lead the players down a different path on an escort mission that will require players to keep the Brothers alive. If one brother is dead for longer than an accumulated time of four minutes (meaning they can be ressed, but sparingly) the event chain will end. Each escort will need to reach it's destination in order to spawn The Great Jungle Wurm, sort of like The Shatterer escort mission. The escorts take about five minutes to complete.

These escort missions are meant to show some key features of the fight with the Wurm ahead. Each Wurm has some characteristics in common, but also some unique features for each head. In the path shown to me players needed to help a Pirate and it was revealed that this particular Wurm head enjoyed swallowing powder kegs, for some reason. On top of this there were also egg sacks that lined the way that needed to be destroyed else they spawned tougher enemies.

The Fight

Each head has two different phrases, as far as I understand. These fights have a focus on mobs to begin with, then a focus on the Wurm itself which allows players to build a bit more diversely for their preferences. I imagine good coordination will call for DPS-centric classes like Warrior and Thief to remain Berserker to handle mobs, while other classes could be called to go more Soldier so they can burn the Wurm itself a bit better.

In the Wurm fight I was shown players had to gather powder kegs from hostile pirates, and small jumping puzzles, while the Wurm was spitting eggs and other mobs. Upon getting the powder kegs you set them by the Wurm who will then consume it and blow up until it's invulnerability shatters and players could burn it until it got back up for another round. It's important to note these kegs are volatile and had a chance to explode when you were hit, and are going to explode after a certain time if you don't get it to the Wurm in time. On top of this the kegs you can get change location every time the Wurm gets up from being attacked.

Reward and Failure

Like Teqautl and the Twisted Marionette, reward is based on how well everyone does in the fight. Likely the quality of the reward is directly related to how many of the heads are defeated. Reward, like Tequatl, is exclusive items that are themed to the boss.

Failure in any leg of the escort, or the fight itself, results in the Wurm being able to spawn anywhere over the map to attack players like some guerilla warrior. Otherwise the biggest result of failure is no reward!

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