Guild-versus-guild battles, better known as GvGs, are a major part of Albion Online's high-level content. While starting out in guild warfare can seem daunting, the system is far more accessible than you might think. In this new video guide, veteran Albion Online streamer Lewpac walks you through every part of the system, explains GvG terminology and rules, and gives some valuable tips for those looking to make the leap to guild warfare.
No time to watch the video, or prefer a written guide? Read on for a summary:
1. What is a GvG?
Guild-versus-guild battles (GvGs) are competitive 5v5 team fights that determine ownership of territories in Albion Online. These intense battles usually last between 10-25 minutes, with the winner either claiming a new territory for their guild or defending an already-owned territory that was under attack.
Guilds fight over these territories because they provide benefits to both the guild that holds them and their allies:
- Guards and a watchtower will aid you against hostile players within the territory boundaries.
- During GvG Seasons, towers will spawn mages that generate season points and energy for your guild.
- All territories have a storage chest that both you and your allies can use. You can even set up shared guild tabs for storage or resource donations from gatherers.
- Resources that spawn in a territory offer a 50% gathering yield bonus (guilds only, allies do not get this benefit).
- Resource towers will also generate a Crystal GvG battle once per day, in which your players can fight for season points, siphoned energy, Tomes and Silver.
Despite GvGs being viewed as an end-game activity, thanks to IP (Item Power) caps (see Section 3 below), there is a type of GvG suitable for every level of play.
2. Launching a GvG
Once you have decided to engage in some GvG action, you will need to launch an attack. There are two main ways to launch a GvG:
Option 1: Warcamps (also called Siege Camps): Situated throughout Albion are warcamps that link to a resource tower in the same zone. Warcamps, like territories, have an active time window that can be viewed in the map UI. Guilds can use warcamps at the appropriate time to declare an attack. They will have to be secured in the open world, often resulting in a ZvZ battle ("zerg -versus-zerg", meaning an open-world battle with large numbers of players on each side), so make sure you bring support if you expect resistance. Once a warcamp is in its active time period, you have the option to launch an attack for the following day, or pacify the camp for 24 hours to prevent an attack from being launched. (This would usually be done if you already own the tower connected to the warcamp.)
Option 2: Guild Territories: Each guild-owned territory is linked to a number of other territories. You can attack any connected enemy territory by selecting it and clicking the attack button. You will then be given the option of where to attack from (if you have more than one potential launch territory), and be informed of the cost and the timeslot the GvG will take place.
- You will need to pay a Silver cost to launch an attack. This cost is tied to the global discount, so can vary, but expect to pay 3-5 million Silver for a warcamp launch and 1-2 million Silver for a territory launch.
- If your team scores at least one point in the GvG, then 90% of the attack cost is refunded. This mechanic exists to prevent scheduling attacks and not showing up ("no-shows") to waste the enemy guild's time.
3. Gearing up for a GvG
Once you have launched an attack and assembled your team, you will need to gear up for the GvG. GvG battles are full-loot so you will need to bring multiple sets of armor and weapons. Most people bring a minimum of 3 sets as you don’t want to run out of equipment mid-fight.
You will need to place the equipment for a GvG in the Battlevault of the territory or warcamp you are defending or attacking from. This is accessed by opening the territory bank and selecting Battlevault from the drop-down menu. REMEMBER: ONLY EQUIPMENT THAT IS IN THE BATTLEVAULT, IN YOUR INVENTORY, OR ACTIVELY EQUIPPED WILL COME WITH YOU INTO A GVG!
You should also be aware of the item power caps for the zone the GvG takes place in, and aim for equipment around that limit.
Item Power Caps:
- Yellow Zone = 800 IP, 80% reduction above limit
- Red Zone GvGs = 800 IP, 80% reduction above limit
- Anglia + Glouvia = 1000 IP, 50% reduction above limit
- Cumbria + Siluria = 1200 IP, 50% reduction above limit
- Mercia = NO IP CAP
- Crystal Realm = 1000 IP, 50% reduction above limit
4. Joining and fighting a GvG
All of your guild’s GvGs, including Crystal GvGs, will be shown on the upcoming battle list of your guild page in-game (Default hotkey: G). Simply open the correct battle and click ‘join’ to sign up. You can also invite other guildmates or allies to the battle.
NOTE : If you are taking part in a GvG for an allied guild, they will need to manually invite you to the GvG as you will not be able to see their GvG battle list.
Once your team is signed up you will need to be in the correct zone at the time the GvG starts (don’t forget to store your items in the Battlevault). Defenders will need to be in the zone being defended and attackers can be in either the zone they are attacking or the zone they are attacking from. Both teams will then be moved into the appropriate territory, and the edges of the territory will be blocked by a magical barrier to prevent outside interference. Anyone inside the defending territory not taking part in the GvG will be teleported out once the battle begins.
Each team will start on their own side of the map in their tent, next to a chest containing their battlevault equipment. They then have 30 seconds to gear up, eat any desired food, overcharge if needed, and mount up for battle!
Players are invulnerable around their own tent. Take care when fighting near an enemy tent, as it comes equipped with a powerful laser similar to a territory watchtower!
Both teams will then move onto the map to begin fighting and capturing objectives (AKA runestones, which are captured via a channeling spell that takes about 10 seconds). Each team starts with 150 points and the first team to hit zero points loses the GvG.
Points are removed from the enemy team as follows ("rotation" means the minute timer reaches zero):
- Killing an enemy: 4 Points
- Capturing a stone: 1 Point
- Holding 1 more stone than the opponent during a rotation: 10 points
- Holding all stones during a rotation: 20 points
Dying in a GvG will drop the equipment you have on the floor which any one still alive can loot. You will then respawn at your tent and be able to re-equip gear. Respawns are quite fast at the start of a battle but the respawn timer increases as the battle goes on.
Cap Point Rotations are scored every minute, so for example if after the first minute of the play you hold 1 cap and the opponent has 2, you will lose 10 points. Therefore, it is important to keep an eye on the time when deciding if you should try and grab cap points. It takes around 10 seconds to fully capture a point and any damage will interrupt the cap.
A GvG battlefield has three capturable runestones spread out across the map. The exact layout depends on the type of territory, and each map type will have different strategies.
A GvG can last up to 25 minutes If this time limit is reached and both teams still have points left, the defending team will be declared the winner.
20v20 City Fight Special Rules
The Royal Cities, as well as Caerleon, are contested in 20v20 battles which are similar to a GvG but have the following rules:
- There are 5 capture points instead of 3
- Each team begins with 200 points
- Kills are worth 1 point instead of 4
- You can earn up to 40 points per cap rotation for holding all the points
5. Counter-attacks and Retaliations
There are a couple of GvG mechanics that you should become familiar with before getting involved in launching attacks and fighting GvGs:
Counter-attacks: these are automatic attacks that are triggered when a defending team wins with more than 100 points remaining and the attack originated from a territory, not a warcamp. Counter-attacks take place in the half hour slot right after a GvG (e.g. a counter-attack from a 16:00 GvG would take place at 16:30). This attack does not cost anything and cannot be re-countered, so it's essentially a ‘free’ attack as a reward for a strong defense.
Retaliations: If your guild loses a territory but still holds a territory adjacent to the one lost, you have a 30 minute window of time after the GvG ends in which you can launch a retaliation attack. Retaliations take place on the following hour (e.g. a retaliation on a GvG lost at 16:00 would take place at 17:00). Guilds have to pay the normal attack fee to launch a retaliation, and unsuccessful retaliations CAN be countered.
6. What happens when you lose a GvG?
Upon losing an attack, you and your team will be removed from the territory and placed at one of the exits to the zone with any equipment you have equipped. Items in your battle vault will remain there until collected from the territory or warcamp you attacked from.
If you lose a defense, you will also generally lose access to the tower your gear is stored in (with the exception of a home plot fight). This means that when a team feels they are losing a defense for sure, they need to lift out all of their gear from the battle vault to prevent it being ‘locked’. This is why you will often see defense teams giving up the match earlier than an attacking team would. If you fail to lift your gear you will be unable to access it again until either you or an ally retakes the territory. As with attacks, after losing you will be teleported from the territory to a random exit with all your equipment on you.
Many players log off before the end of a GvG to avoid being killed with all their equipment after a loss.
NOTE: If you lose a GvG but your guild owns another territory in the same zone, you will be ported there instead of a random exit. Note that you can still be killed in your own territory (with the exception of inside a home plot), so take care.
7. GvG Lockout System
The GvG lock system exists to prevent one powerful team fighting all across Albion on the span of one single day.
Once you have taken part in a GvG, regardless of whether it was an attack or defense, you will then be ‘locked’ to that territory for 24 hours from the time the GvG ended. During this period you will be unable to fight any GvGs with this character EXCEPT ones that take place in the territory you are locked to or the territories immediately connected to it.
In the above example, a character is locked to Territory A after doing a GvG. For the next 24 hours, that character can only fight in Territories A (the locked territory), B and C (because they are directly connected). It is also possible to fight in an attack launched out of B or C during the lock, so D and E are also attackable. However, the character would not be able to fight a defense in D or E, as these are not directly connected.
The only exception to this is if you take part in a defense and win without losing a single point (150-0) you will not be locked. This would only generally happen in the event of an attacker not showing up or a massive difference in team skill levels or gear. However, attacking a territory will always lock you, even if no defenders show up.
8. Training for GvGs
There are a number of ways upcoming teams can practice for GvG matches. The most common way is the use of the scrim mechanic (officially called "GvG Training Battles"), which allows players to initiate an instanced 5v5 GvG match without full loot rules.
The command to initiate a match is “/cm
- resources (Highlands, Swamp and Forest Biomes)
- resources2 (Mountain and Steppe Biomes)
So for example, type ‘/cm Lewpac farmland’ to challenge Lewpac’s group to a farm scrim.
Generally scrims are considered the best way to practice for GvGs, though due to the non-full-loot aspect some teams will play differently from how they might in a real GvG.
Teams also use full-loot 5v5 Hellgates as a place to hone their skills. Although there is no objective capturing in Hellgates, it is still a decent place to practice team fighting under pressure. There are mobs that can interfere with fights, so be sure to keep an eye on your surroundings.
Finally, the Arena offers a 5v5 battle experience for new teams in a non-full-loot environment, with a very low IP cap. The Arena is fine for learning the basics of PvP, but as to the objectives, points, and layout are different from those in GvGs they are not recommended as a long term practice solution.
9. GvG Seasons
Albion's guild-vs-guild conflicts are divided into seasons. Each season a winner is declared, and guilds are rewarded based on their final standings. Seasons last approximately 3 months. Our next guide will take a more in-depth look at seasons in Albion Online, so stay tuned...