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Guild Wars 2 Website

Overview

I had the pleasure of working on a ground-up redesign of the Guild Wars 2 website. During the initial phase of the design, I—along with other member of the design team—began exploration to develop new visual language with the goal of creating a refreshingly clean and contemporary look while retaining the iconic painterly aesthetic of the Guild Wars 2 brand. The redesign of guildwars2.com was to be a test-piece that would dictate the look and feel of the entire Guild Wars 2 brand moving forward.

After many iterations and several stakeholder reviews, our team lead’s visual direction was chosen as the starting point for designing the new website. From this point forward, it was my job to take that initial art direction and develop it into a full suite of visual styles and treatments. Throughout the development of the new website, I played a key role in establishing the information architecture, designing and prototyping interaction models, and creating high-fidelity functional mockups for implementation by the development team.

Look and Feel

Perhaps the two most noticeable aspects of the Guild Wars 2 brand are the generous use of white space and the interplay between clean, contemporary lines and rich, artisanal brushwork. Before the website redesign, one of the main issues plaguing the Guild Wars 2 brand was the fact that no clear balance had been established for the use of brushstrokes and painterly elements. The early brand made heavy use of brushstrokes and grunge texture with little regard for contrast and cleanliness, resulting in an overall muddy and heavy appearance. By introducing a measured dose of clean design elements and paying careful attention to whitespace and composition, the remaining painterly elements took on a much more deliberate role. While the overall use of paint was greatly reduced, the overall impact of those remaining painterly elements was heightened as a result of this contrast. As such, one of the defining principles of the new brand became the careful balance between clean and contemporary and painterly and artisanal.

Clean vs. Painterly
Painterly Masking
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  • Client
    ARENANET
  • My Roles
    UX DESIGN | ART DIRECTION | VISUAL DESIGN
  • Date Completed
    2011
  • Additional Credit
    KATE WELCH | HANS KREBS