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Friday, April 12, 2013

That F2P MMO

Almost every night, when I'm not too tired, and the rest of the household have gone to sleep, I sit down the play a couple of hours of that free to play, massively multi-player online game. Guild Wars 2, that is.

So far, I've nearly clocked 400 hours, and I'm still finding it fun.  My motivations have changed since I first started playing, and I've experienced a bit more of what the game has to offer since my last post. Even the game has changed a little since the last most, near the start of the year.

Last month, much to my pleasure, the monthly quest was finally accessible to me.  No requirement to run a dungeon.  That's right in my ball park.

This month, there are enough tasks on the monthly quest to complete without having to run a dungeon as well.  And I'm almost there.  I just have to complete one more event, and kill 15 more players in WvW.

Is it irony, or something else?  I've actually run dungeons this month.  Sometime ago, I had the pleasure of joining the United Australian Warriors [AUS] guild on Stormbluff Isle.  It's a decidedly casual guild, and a little small with some alliances with other guilds on the server.  We were starting to have a closer relationship with Blood Creed [BC] until they decided to merge into Meiji Renegades [MxR] to provide a US/Oceanic guild with an almost 24 hour coverage on the server.  Anyway, the current guild leader knows his stuff, is friendly and we all get along.  And, I also get invited to run a dungeon here and there!

So, way back when, I ran AC in a PUG. Since then, I've run the Citadel of Flame (CoF) several times, Caudecus's Manor (CM) once and the Crucible of Eternity (CoE) once.  I've enjoyed CoF the most, since now I know what is actually going on with the events, and I've run it enough to buy myself an exotic rifle that would normally would have crafted anyway.

These days, I'm playing Addison Axe the most.  I tried having a go at Mesmer, but hit a flat spot in the leveling curve.  Plus, it's more fun when you have someone to level with.  And even though you get scaled up to level 80 in WvW, level 30 is still far too early to be run around those zones solo.  If I have the patience, and the daily quest requires it, I'll fire up one of my younger characters to put a level or so on.  Usually it will be because the daily quest requires progression in the story line, or a level, or a skill point, or even just 50 kills in a zone that I have a level appropriate character looking to earn a bit more XP in.

And even though I'm playing Addison Axe the most, she's not geared in full exotics, yet.  I used to have an arms/str/discipline build, centered around greatsword and rifle.  It was great for soloing, and seems to work okay in PvP, although the skill set is different.  However, it was a little selfish for group play.  So I've since swapped to the Sonic Boon build, and am working on getting myself a full set of Knights exotic armor.  But it's expensive, and farming takes time.  Time I don't have while I'm trying to complete the monthly quest.

So, when I've done the daily, I jump in for some WvW.  The first port of call with WvW is to find out where your guildies are playing (if they're in there), or join the official Stormbluff Isle Teamspeak server, and join up with them.  As one of the commanders mentioned in chat, you are immediately more useful if you know what is actually going on.  And we all like to be useful engines.

WvW has a few simple guidelines for me, at the moment.  First, always have supply, and pick that supply up from a camp site.  Supply in castles has to be transported there from a campsite, and should be held in reserve for defense.

Secondly, stay on the commander and do what he says.  I'd like to say that the commanders know what they're doing, but since I don't, and usually don't last two seconds by myself, I'll say that they know better than me.  Some commanders will use the terrain to hide, and prevent the enemy from knowing how many people we have running around the country side.  Last night, someone mentioned that commanders get free siege patterns, so there's not much point buying those, when the command is likely to drop and instruct on targets when required.

There's doesn't seem to be a third, because they're simple guidelines.  Unfortunately, I don't get many kills in a single session, because I'm running around, following commanders, operating siege, reviving if convenient, or trying to stay live.  So getting 50 kills for the monthly quest is a bit of an achievement.  Still, with only 15 to go, and a little more than half a month to go, totally achievable.

And then there's PvP.  Addison Axe was originally created to be a PvP toon.  When I switched to the Sonic Boon build, I gave it a try in PvP, and it was horrible.  The healing returned from shouts is crap, and there's no CC.  So back to my previous PvP build.

The PvP daily is something worth doing, if there is Ascended gear, purchasable by laurels, that you are interested in.  You usually only need to take part in 4 matches to complete the daily.

Anyway, that's my Guild Wars 2 update for a while, until something massive changes, or I start doing something stupid, like commence collecting materials for a Legendary weapon.
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Update: 23 April 2013.  It turns out that laurels are not guaranteed from the PvP daily.  A laurel is only given for the first daily you complete, whether is be PvE or PvP.  Still, the PvP daily can usually be completed in pretty short order, if you don't accidentally walk in on a PvP build demo.

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