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Guild Wars 2 sends players into a political battle on July 23

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The next update scheduled to hit Guild Wars 2 on July 23 will add a political race calling for players' in-game support both financially and on the battlefield, developer ArenaNet announced today.

The Cutthroat Politics update will introduce two candidates striving to fill the currently-vacant seat on the Captain's Council of Lion's Arch: war hero Ellen Kiel and the merchant Evon Gnashblade. Players will use support tokens and coins to help back the candidate of their choosing, as well as take to the battlefield to fight for their cause, and ultimately determine which one's campaign is successful before they close on Aug. 5. ArenaNet states the outcome will have a lasting impact on the world of Guild Wars 2.

The update will also add a handful of new events, including the Southsun Survival trial, in which players can go head-to-head armed with only a bow and whatever supplies they can scrounge up. Winners will take home karma, coins and a new rare item. The Aspect Arena will open for new PvP games as well. In the arena, players can choose between the elements of Lightning, Sun, or Wind and race against each other to collect crystals holding these elements and harness their powers.

New rewards added with Cutthroat Politics include new cosmetic items to pin to players' backs, the Desert Rose and Zephyr Rucksack, and mini figurines of candidates Ellen and Evon. A new world-versus-world ability will also be available: Catapult Mastery, which increases damage done to walls and siege weapons.

Earlier this month, ArenaNet announced it would release new updates for Guild Wars 2 every two weeks as part of the developer's commitment to creating a dynamic, living world.