48 worlds weren't enough for the open beta's "huge demand."
The Escapist's own Justin Clouse sat down with the Guild Wars 2 open beta and found himself thoroughly impressed. He certainly wasn't alone - in a post on the Arena.net blog, company president Mike O'Brien said that there had been too much demand for the developer to handle - a happy problem to have:
I think it's safe to say that the response was overwhelming in more ways than one. Firstly, the number of people who pre-purchased the game far exceeded our expectations, and we had to temporarily disable pre-purchases. In the end that wasn't enough, and even with 48 worlds we didn't have enough server capacity to meet the huge demand.
According to O'Brien, "hundreds of thousands" of players showed up to the open beta event, each of them having already purchased Guild Wars 2 in full. These aren't just pre-orders like that for Diablo III, they're full on purchases. That's a nice chunk of change in the bank already for Arena.net, and it shows that there's a sizable base already trusting the developers to deliver on their promises.
What's more, said O'Brien, is that the community feedback seemed to indicate that they had done just that. "Seeing Tyria come alive, with players interacting with dynamic events or engaging in epic World vs. World battles, was an amazing experience," he said. "[Suffice] it say [sic] that we were blown away by the reaction from the community. The positive feedback just strengthens our resolve to deliver the best game possible."
He stressed that it was a genuine beta test for the purpose of finding and solving problems, not just a demo for early purchasers, and said that the team would be working to make improvements for the next beta event.
If you haven't gotten enough of your Guild Wars 2 fix, O'Brien announced that there would be a stress test this coming Monday for seven hours - 11 AM to 6 PM Pacific (2 PM to 9 PM Eastern) - to prepare the servers for the next true beta weekend.