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An arena is a PvP location where 4 vs 4 matches take place.
For a list of all Arenas, see Category:Arenas.
Low Level Arenas
There are two low level arenas, namely Ascalon Arena and Shiverpeak Arena. There is a maximum level on these of 10 and 15 respectively. This is so that lower level players can have PvP battles without having their level as such a disadvantage. These two arenas are not located with the rest of the arenas on The Battle Isles, but are instead located in the Tyrian continent. Characters from a different campaign must travel to Ascalon City to be able to enter the Ascalon Arena or travel to Yak's Bend to be able to enter the Shiverpeak Arena. However, by that time, most players have long since passed the arena level caps and cannot fight in them.
When a PvE character first enters Post-Searing, they immediately have access to Ascalon Arena (provided, of course, that they have not reached above level 10 while in Pre-Searing). In order to access Shiverpeak Arena, players must reach Yak's Bend, a location at the start of the Shiverpeaks. A PvP character cannot access the low level arenas.
Once a PvE character first enters Shing Jea Monastery, they will have access to Shing Jea Arena by talking to Bauyun (Arena Guard). This arena's specifications are the same as Ascalon Arena, the max level is 10 and parties are randomly picked. As this is a location in the story of Factions, PvP characters cannot access this arena. Characters from a different campaign can enter the outpost upon reaching Shing Jea Monastery. By this time most foreign characters are at level 20 and cannot fight in the arena.
In the north of Kamadan is a Sunspear Arena (levels 1-10 only).
In all Low Level arenas, use of elite skills is not allowed.
High Level Arenas
All high level arenas are located on The Battle Isles continent. There are two such arenas, Random Arena and Codex Arena; the difference being that Codex Arena permits players to form their own teams with a limited pool of skills, while Random Arena forces players into random teams.
Although it is shown in the Factions Guidebook and the Guild Wars Factions Manuscripts, the Gladiator's Arena has been removed from development and has never been included in the game.
While Heroes' Ascent is marked as an arena on the map, it is not normally considered one by players.
This section refers to previous versions of Guild Wars.
Before Retail Release
During a Beta Weekend Event (BWE), which was a public testing held during the Guild Wars BETA test, there was a time when the Random Arenas (known as the “Gladiator’s Arena” during the BETA test) were changed from the regular 4 vs 4 to 6 vs 6. While this was an interesting twist on the regular 4 vs 4 arena matches, it didn't last long, and ArenaNet later reverted back to 4 vs 4 and the mode has remained this way ever since.
After the retail release
The low level arenas have always been the same. As for the high level arenas:
When Guild Wars was launched there were five high level arenas:
- D'Alessio Arena at Lion's Arch - random teams, single map
- Fort Koga at Henge of Denravi - random teams, single map
- Amnoon Arena at The Amnoon Oasis - random teams, single map
- Deldrimor Arena at Droknar's Forge - chosen teams, single map
- The Crag at Ember Light Camp - chosen teams, single map
In the May 11th 2005 update, Deldrimor Arena was renamed to Team Arenas. D'Alessio Arena was renamed to Competition arenas. This was a random teams, random map arena. The Crag and Fort Koga were removed, because they were accessible from Team Arenas which you would have had to reach before Henge of Denravi/Ember Light Camp. At this point, PvP characters had a choice of spawning in Competition Arenas or Team Arenas, or the tournament which was then known as Tomb of the Primeval Kings. The Amnoon Arena was removed and could be reached through the competition arena.
Finally, the January 19th 2006 update moved all high level PvP combat to The Battle Isles, accessible from Lion's Arch and later Kaineng Center and Kamadan, Jewel of Istan. New PvP characters spawn in the Great Temple of Balthazar, a new outpost which serves as an introduction to PvP and allows access, via certain quests and paths, to Random Arenas (the new name for Competition Arenas), Team Arenas and Heroes' Ascent.