This is a post I wrote as commentary to the latest gamebreaker.tv video about endgame. It's based on knowledge we gathered so far from the game. I wanted to share this with you.
GW 2 will have more endgame-dungeons than any other mmo. Let me explain why:
1. Dungeons in GW2 have a max. dungeon level. If you visit a lv.30 dungeon as a level 70 character, your character will get scaled down to the max.-dungeon-level in this dungeon (-> character scales to lv.30.)
2.) In GW2 skills can't be bought at a vendor like in other mmos. You have to beat a skill challenge (which are hidden all over the world) to get skillpoints. With those you can buy your skills, when you have unlocked all your empty skillslots (3 utility skillslots and 1 elite skillslot aren't unlocked at first).
3.) ...why this is important: As a lv.80 player your skillpool is bigger. (e.g. all 20 utility skills), but this doesn't mean that those are more powerful. A level 30 character can have bought 3 utility skills which are a good choice for dungeon30.
4.) So it only makes sense: all of them:
-) the level 30 player
-) the level 80 player (downscaled to "effective level 30")
have the same the same endgame-hardcore difficult level for this lv.30 explorable mode dungeon.
The lv.80 player has a bigger pool to choose his skills from, but these aren't superior. (not when he is downscaled).
--> so all dungeons are hardcore/endgame-dungeons.
--> all dungeons will stay hardcore/endgame-dungeons, even with new expansions.
do them in any order you want. There are no gear-restrictions for dungeons/ for anything in the game.
there will be added dungeons later. Each dungeon is made highly repeatable. There are 3 unique paths in each explorable mode dungeon with specific bosses, a lot of optional bosses who spawn randomly, and a lot of random dynamic events in those dungeons as well. An example was a hidden cave which got opened and somehow you could summon a huge ghostarmy which helped you defeating a strong boss.
8 dungeons at release means 8x3 = 24 different highly repeatable very hard dungeons. You can't outgear dungeons. They will stay hard forever.
Imagine the epic battle against Illidan. Today this encounter is nothing near as epic as it was a couple of years ago. Now think of it:
Illidan in GW2:
You are a Cataplayer (lv.85) who never experienced Illidan. You go back to the Black Temple. Now your character, your stats etc. get scaled to the max. dungeon level 70. You have the same hard dungeon run someone had a few years ago.
furthermore: you got the Warclaive of Azzinoth. It is lv.70. No problem, use a transmutation stone and turn it into a lv.85 weapon. Epic!
(yes, there are tokens for weapons in GW2-dungeons. But we actually don't know if there are/aren't any cosmetic/non cosmetic rare drops from bosses/normal enemies inside those dungeons. We only know that you won't have to grind for weapons you need. So this part of weapon-drop is speculation)
Don't forget: Explorable mode dungeons in GW2 are hard. Everyone who played them would confirm this.
here some clips from the beta: story mode (normal mode dungeon)
note: this isn't even the hard exploration mode
the best version by far from Mike B. (Tap repeatedly)
an other guy who only knew skill 1 and fire attunement... should have played the tutorial
and a few crazy guys (Yogcast) who rush into danger. A bit overchallenged. Guys: watch video 1 from Mike B.