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Thursday, November 15, 2012

Guild Wars 2 End Game : Not there yet

Last night I managed to hit level 80 with my guardian, Colerejuste.  And now I don't know what to do.

Is this the problem that many people have cited with the Guild Wars 2 end game?  Not bloody likely. It's not that I've got nothing today. Now that I've finished level PvE, I need to find a new focus, and I've got so much to choose from, such as:

  1. Finish leveling my crafts.  I've got armorsmithing and cooking.  The cooking has been really slow going, due to scarcity of ingredients, and armorsmithing is getting there, but I need to collect many more rare materials.  That'll teach me to earn XP via daily bonuses, instead of grinding the mobs that drop the goodies.
  2. Finish My Story. I'm currently at level 71 for the My Story progression.  I was finding them harder because my gear was falling so far behind.  Now that I've upgraded all my gear to entry level purchases from the AH, they shouldn't be so bad.
  3. See the inside of the remaining dungeons.  I've only seen one, and it was a bit of a shambles, as the rest of the group had been there before.  I was struggling with just keeping up, trying to keep an eye out for when they decided to run past a bunch of mobs (as opposed to me who kept running into them).  Still, the overall result was good, and the group didn't call me names.
  4. PvP! PvP is it's own thing, with it's own ranks going up to 90, completely independent of PvE and WvWvW.
  5. WvWvW. It's PvP, Jim, but not as we know it.  Or perhaps it is.  Perhaps try this : It's PvP, Jim, but with your PvE gear. Like I said, PvP is it's own thing, gear included.  You're only a big PvP tough guy in the PvP area.  In WvWvW, you wear your PvE gear, scaled up to level 80, and incur repair costs if you die.
  6. Explore.  There's much of the world left to see, and much silver to be earned by completing heart quests.
  7. Complete skills.  I don't have a complete set of skills to pick from yet, but that should round out with continued experience and skill challenges.  Even though you stop leveling at 80, you still get experience and accumulate skill points.
See, plenty of stuff to do.

I was having another look at the PvP action last night, and decided that I don't like the guardian terribly much for PvP.  

One of the reasons that I went with guardian was that he was sword and board, and I liked the health back on damage mechanic.  That's all well and good, but when the tough gets going in PvP, I need to be tougher.  I was so accustomed to PvPing as a Prot Warrior in WoW, that doing a similar thing in GW2 just isn't possible.  WoW had intercept, rend and hamstring : lots of nice crowd control abilities.  The guardian doesn't play that way, and the abilities that I've seen so far are what you'd expect of a guardian : skills that heal the group, and cure their ills.

So, my crazy little thought is to try a warrior. Yes, it's absolutely bonkers.  I've already filled my characters slots with a variety of other races and professions (male human thief, female sylvari necromancer, male charr engineer, female asura mesmer), and I've just got to 80 with one character, and have so much stuff left to do.  On the flip side, I'm sure a female human warrior would do well in the Order of Whispers.  I would probably limit my PvE activities to the daily achievement, carried out in WvWvW, and spend the rest of the time in PvP. Although I'd still be doing regular PvE stuff until level 30, just so I could get into the Order of Whispers.

On my list of things to figure out, I also need to get a better understanding of Condition Damage, and which professions actually benefit from that.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

One thing led to another

Levelling in Guild Wars 2, later in the game, seems to go a bit quicker than expected.  I managed to knock over two levels today, and now I'm level 76, fast approaching the level 80 cap. However, I'm still working my way through a level 60 to 70 zone, and the My Story quest is at level 68.  And worse still, my gear seems to average about level 65.  I actually found a Basic (white) item that out geared my currently equipped Masterwork (green) item.

One of the things that struck me today about GW2 is how one thing leads to another, and before you know it, you've got a group event on your hands.

I was tooling around the side of some mount, and I noticed an event quest where the NPC needed reviving.  The NPC was in a cave behind an encampment, so I wandered in to have a gander.  Holy dooley!  No less than 4 veteran mobs were loitering around the NPC.  I had a go at kiting one of the mobs, but it was a bit risky and I was quickly overwhelmed and had to run out.

Then another player came along, and we had a bit more of a go at it.  With two players, kitting was a bit more successful, but it really came together when a third player joined in.  We were about to down the veterans, revive the NPC, guard the NPC while she did her thing, and defeat further spawning mobs and veterans.

Completion of that event spawned 3 more events.  The necessary destruction of destroyers!  Following the target areas on our mini maps, we made our way into the heart of the mountain and proceeded to lay waste to destroyer crabs and trolls. East side, south side and north side.

When that was completed, we found ourselves in the heart of the mountain, which was in fact, a volcano.  We grabbed a skill point, and then the next part of the event started to play out.  Three stabilizers were arranged around the magma pool.  Asura were stationed at each one, but they needed help keeping them going, and keeping destroyer trolls and crabs from stopping them and the stabilization process they were carrying out.  By this point, we had 4 other people helping, so we were able to defend a stabilizer each.  Many Large Claws were looted by all!

Once the stabilization process completed, a huge destroyer champion came out of the magma.  By this time, many more people had join the event.  There was running commentary from the NPCs to give guidance as to what to do (kill the baddies) and GW2s pattern of making red circles of death helped many avoid such a thing.  I must say, I do like the rally and revive mechanic.  It's really handy for keeping an event such as this going, without having a wipe and reset.

After what seemed like an age, the champion came down.  I had to make a little more room in my inventory, and then I was able to collect my rewards from the chest.

It's awesome when one thing leads to another, and culminates in a group event such as this.  A raid feel without having to actually be in a raid.

In other news, I finally uninstalled WoW, RIFT and LotRO.  Next months full back with be that little bit lighter.