In the run-up to the launch of any new MMORPG, scheming hardcore players plot the fastest possible route to the level cap, hoping to hit it first and briefly become an Internet celebrity. This was accomplished in Guild Wars 2 before the game even officially launched, and with a crucial amount of XP coming from an unconventional source--crafting.
'Surfeuze' of the French guild War Legend achieved this feat during the three-day headstart access period, ahead of Guild Wars 2's official launch on PC this morning. He relied in part on how GW2 handily grants experience for crafting items. It's technically possible to reach the level cap of 80 purely through crafting, though Surfeuze only used it for the final push.
"Surfeuze played normal PvE content to level 60, although obviously racing past everything he could, and then leveled from 60 to 80 through crafting," ArenaNet president Mike O'Brien explained on Reddit. "His secret weapon was his strong team supplying him with crafting materials. That allowed him to jump ahead of everyone else in those last 20 levels."
ArenaNet had initially suspected Surfeuze of using a dubious technique to level up so fast, which is being fixed, but this turned out not to be the case.
"At the same time Surfeuze was racing to level 80, we were tracking and talking with other players who were racing toward 80 as well, using a technique that really shouldn't be that lucrative and that we're making changes to fix," O'Brien said. "We believed one of those players would be first to 80, and when Surfeuze posted of his accomplishment, I mistakenly thought he was a player who had used that technique."