Aug. 28, 2012 at 5:09 PM ET
The highly anticipated online fantasy game "Guild Wars 2" officially opened its doors today and already hundreds of thousands of players have flocked to the game.
Not surprisingly, gamers and the game's developers at AreneaNet have hit a few bumps along the way as hordes of players have tried to sign in to the massively multiplayer online role-playing game.
Some players are reporting problems connecting to the game while others are having issues creating characters in the game, which takes place in the virtual, magic-filled world of Tyria. Meanwhile the developers at ArenaNet say they've already had to suspend some "Guild Wars 2" players for offensive and hateful behavior.
As they launched the game Tuesday, ArenaNet officials announced that one million people had already played "Guild Wars 2" from Saturday through Monday during a three-day headstart program that launched over the weekend. Those who pre-ordered "Guild Wars 2" were allowed to start on Saturday. And ArenaNet reps say that, at one point, 400,000 people were playing the game at one time.
In fact, one French player managed to get his character to the game's top level (level 80) in a record-breaking 32 hours of playtime.
But some players on Tuesday reported having trouble logging into the game. The official @GuildWars2 Twitter account acknowledged the issues tweeting: "We're aware of the login issues and are working on them – thanks for your patience!"
ArenaNet also assured European players that they are aware of connectivity issues there and tweeted, "We are currently pushing updates to fix bugs or issues that are affecting gameplay." And in the afternoon they added, "For those of you having problems with lag or character creation, we're looking into it. Thanks for letting us know!"
Meanwhile, players have reported issues with the "Guild Wars 2" overflow server system, which is designed to allow people to keep playing when their own server is overloaded. And the "Guild Wars 2" Trading Post -- a system that allows players to trade items between each other -- is offline.
ArenaNet issued the following explanation:
We currently have a couple serious bugs with one of our important back end systems. This error is causing the loss of trading post, players to sometimes be separated and unable to travel to each other when switching maps and entering overflow servers, and numerous guild errors. We are very sorry for this inconvenience and are currently working around the clock to try and remedy this error.
When this bug is fixed overflow servers will keep parties together and players will be able to travel to the same overflow server as any friend or guild member who is in an overflow.
With hundreds of thousands of players trying to jump into a brand new online game, these kinds of issues are not out of the ordinary. When "Diablo 3" arrived earlier this year, Blizzard ended up apologizing to the many gamers who encountered servers so overwhelmed by the launch-day crush the game was unplayable. And when BioWare launched "Star Wars: The Old Republic" servers quickly became over crowded and many players found themselves stuck in waiting rooms.
But the kinks and bugs associated with a new online game aren't the only issues facing the "Guild Wars 2" creators and players.
Some players have found themselves suspended from the game for giving their characters offensive names and for using offensive and racist language while chatting in the game. It has become such a hotly discussed topic, the folks at ArenaNet took to Reddit to explain why they have banned players and to offer examples of exactly the kind of names and language that can't be used.
To keep Guild Wars 2 a pleasant place to be, we take action against racist names, hate speech, and other unacceptable behavior. We have suspended some accounts involved in the use of offensive character names or inappropriate chat. The number of account blocks is miniscule: less than .001% of our total player base.
When an account is blocked for a chat offense, the account is given a three-day suspension. When an account is blocked for an offensive name, the player is required to rename the character name and, in most cases, the account is also given a three-day suspension.
In the lively Reddit discussion, ArenaNet went through some of the names and comments that earned a ban. Most are not appropriate for me to print here, but, for example, ArneaNet officials explained it's not ok to say the following:
Also, ArenaNet officials advise, "Save yourself a possible headache and avoid real-world and celebrity names." And no, you can not use the names "Stop It Daddy Ahhhh" or "Adolf Critler." In case you were wondering.
Though the game has now launched, the folks at ArenaNet say their work has only just begun.
As Mike O'Brien, president and co-founder of ArenaNet, said in a statement: "Now our focus is shifting to building on this living world we've delivered, continuously refining our game and improving services to ensure our players have the best possible experience."
Winda Benedetti writes about video games for NBC News. You can follow her tweets about games and other things on Twitter here @WindaBenedetti and you can follow her on Google+. Meanwhile, be sure to check out the IN-GAME FACEBOOK PAGE to discuss the day's gaming news and reviews.