Guild Wars 2: Tyrian Travels (Pt. 6)

It’s time for a shake up!

Though, if I were you, I wouldn’t put Charr into a bag and shake them up- that would probably lead to several bouts of mauling and maiming. Unfortunately, the Guardian that has been so prominently featured in the Tyrian Travels series will be leaving us soon. It’s a tough call to make as she is one of my Lvl 50 characters but I feel it needs to be done. I’m not usually one to delete characters (especially the very first ones I make) but server limits, her current set of traits and skills, and other factors make this a slightly necessary action.

This means that the Mesmer will take the place of the original (and best) of my characters now.

The reasons for the shake up are few but valid (in my opinion). I’ve spent a day or so collecting materials and building her a whole new set of gear, then another day testing out a solid skill set, and then (after taking her out to a Lvl 50 area) realised it didn’t really work out. I’m not entirely sure what is wrong with her (but I could guess) but there’s something wrong.

It comes to something when, even with the range bonuses, a lightly armoured Mesmer can take down several Lvl 54s at Lvl 51, yet a Guardian struggles to fight more than one thing at a time without some degree of difficulty. I suspect, as the class is solid, that the problem lies with the way I’ve built her. Most likely due to the fact that I made several (likely poor) decisions about her traits and skills over time and so she’s kind of watered down. She could be doing more- but she isn’t- and it’s likely I could salvage her but I wonder if it is really worth it. To bring her into the realms of staff wielding (the only weapon she hasn’t tried) is possible, but, unless I collect every Hero Point on the map, it’s going to hinder her for quite some time to come.

Getting to Piken Square was half the battle after the Searing. Getting away from it again was the other half.
Getting to Piken Square was half the battle after the Searing. Getting away from it again was the other half.

That said, there will be a replacement Guardian.

I’ve managed to get the new Guardian to nearly the same crafting discipline levels as the old one right out of the gate (with about 20-50 points difference overall). So her crafting disciplines are fine, she managed to get to Lvl 15 just by crafting items from creation, and she’s wielding a staff which is actually working out quite well.

On the brighter side of the news- the Mesmer finally found Piken Square! Or what was left of it. It wasn’t really as impressive as I’d expected, it also seems a little more southward than anticipated, and a bit smaller. Still, at least I know it exists. He’s also up to Lvl 60 so he’ll be doing all of his personal story bits and pieces soon! I’ve also been lurking in the Gem Store after getting a good price on a 2000 Gem card. Bought the Living World Season Two pack while it was on sale and picked up the seventh, and final, character slot reserved for a Necromancer.

While my other classes (the Ranger, Elementalist, Warrior, and Thief) are all at Lvl 31, too.

This is the first soft cap for their levelling process as they’ll unlock their Elite skills around then. Which means, if nothing else, their build will be solid and they’ll have access to their entire build options. The Necromancer will likely be made a little later after the Guardian reaches at least Lvl 31 as well. Hoping to get her to Lvl 50 rather quickly to replace the lost Guardian.

Have a nice week, all!


Guild Wars 2: Tyrian Travels (Pt. 5)

The collection is almost complete.

With the acquisition of a character slot from the Gem Store I’ve added a sixth (and almost final) character to my account- the Thief! It was a tough call between a Thief and an Engineer as they’re both solid classes, both wear medium armour, and both have a great deal of utility. But they have profession mechanics which work somewhat differently to the other professions. The Thief employs the Initiative system, for instance. Each of their skills costs an amount of Initiative to use but few if any feature cooldowns- so they can be chained together to deadly effect- but you might leave yourself unable to act if you use too many.

Likewise, the Engineer features the Tool Belt mechanic. This allows all of their equipped non-weapon skills to be used with a slightly different effect in addition to their usual use, which, while it provides a lot of utility, is a system that’s slightly confusing to anticipate how it would work. I’m sure that explanation made no sense, either!

For those who’ve read Guild Wars 2: Tyrian Travels (Pt. 3) you might be wondering why I went without Heart of Thorns.

It's important to stay hydrated.
It’s important to stay hydrated.

Well, the reasons are many fold. I bought my copy of Guild Wars 2 as a digital key and I was lucky to find a retailer that still held keys for the core game (as I assume they’re going to disappear eventually once Heart of Thorns becomes the edition to have). Secondly, access to the bulk of the content is in Maguuma Jungle after Lvl 80. Thirdly there is the Living World Season Two. The last two reasons are tied together, as, without completing all of the existing content, I won’t be able to access content in the correct order. So there really isn’t a rush to get Heart of Thorns.

That and the preorder bonuses don’t really appeal to me. Access to the beta events leaves me wondering if I would be able to actually do the events, as, again, I have no characters currently at Lvl 80. Got two around Lvl 50 but that’s about it. The title would be nice- but I hardly consider it an essential purchase. While I can upgrade to the Deluxe Edition via the Gem Store later if I want.

There are a few things I would like from the Gem Store, however. Like the aforementioned Living World Season Two (which was on sale recently). As I see it, even if I were to spend £60 on there, which I probably couldn’t as I don’t think I want that much, that’s still only the equivalent of six months of subscription costs on a usual subscription based MMO. When I think about how much I spent on World of Warcraft subscription costs (which I don’t begrudge spending)- £60 seems like peanuts. Still, I would likely only pick up a couple more things. Like the extra content and maybe one more character slot. I really enjoy the look of the Necromancer. One of those professions from the first Guild Wars that was a pleasant surprise for me.

This is a different type of post for this series, as, while it hasn’t delved into the adventures of our fine folks, it has talked about what goes on under the hood as it were. Also, as noted in the first post, it is to be expected that eventually things will slow down. Not to say that the series is dying- far from it- just that we’ll have slower laid back posts at times, too.

Have a nice weekend, all!


Guild Wars 2: Tyrian Travels (Pt. 4)

Guilds, crafting, exploration, sales, and more.

My characters now have a guild to call home! Due to snagging a rather nice Letter of Influence from one of the daily login rewards I was able to acquire a hefty chunk of Influence, which, with the Architecture and Politics research, allows me to build a small guild bank and emblazon my guild pane with an emblem. I could later add this to weapons, armour, and other things- but those are a bit further off (and possibly even out of reach with a solo character guild). Given I can represent five(?) on my account, I will likely keep this as a pet project and if I really want to join an active guild then do so later.

The fifty slot guild bank would also cover nearly two personal bank tabs. Of course, there are limitations on what can go in those tabs, like soulbound and account bound items are not allowed in guild banks, but all other manner of things are. Like runes, sigils, food, Black Lion Chests, and other spacesinks. I have plans to expand when I have the Influence later.

If nothing else it takes the pressure off for requiring an additional personal bank tab, as I now have the space to wait and buy with gold, if at all, in the future.

The next development is that my account is now able to use the Trading Post and other full account facilities. Which, in the first instance, brought me a good 60 silver in sales from surplus crafting materials. Hardly wealth beyond measure- but better than selling to vendors or destroying them. It has since net me a few more gold and does wonders for the Jeweler. I can salvage the ones that won’t net a good price and sell the ones that will. Not to mention it’s a good dumping ground for depreciated (yet profitable) recipes.

Under the overgrowth. Exploration! Riches! Probable death!
Under the overgrowth. Exploration! Riches! Probable death!

I may or may not have overshot the crafting levels a little bit, too.

While exploring a Lvl 45-50 area on my Guardian I found that while the majority of ore was Platinum, there were still small quantities of Iron to be had, which should mean for those between Lvl 20-40 (which is the the rest of my characters), there are more opportunities to collect materials while exploring more fluidly than anticipated. Especially considering one of those characters doesn’t even have any crafting disciplines that require materials. While most crafting disciplines are now between 150-300 besides Leatherworker which needs a little push. So, as far as crafting goes, we’re on track for good things as far as I can tell.

Which is what the main focus has been for a while- preparatory work. Getting the guild up and running, solidifying the character builds, developing crafting disciplines, exploring the world, and enjoying the characters all the while. Which has been going swimmingly thus far. There are still some minor issues for some characters but those will sort themselves out most likely.

The last thought on my mind recently is whether I want to purchase an additional character slot with Gems. I have no qualms about buying a character slot- I did in the first Guild Wars- and I’m rather tempted to here. I don’t mind spending real money with Guild Wars in general. They tend to have been pretty fair with what you can purchase, how much it costs, and what it can actually do. There are few to no opportunities to pay to win. Nor are there many opportunities where they overcharge (in my opinion).

Have a nice week, all!


Guild Wars 2: Tyrian Travels (Pt. 3)

Things were not what they seemed!

I would say I was lied to but I’m making this up as I go along. That said, it’s not a bad revelation- quite the opposite in fact- and one I’m thankful I got with one character before the others progressed. Y’see, I had this crazy idea that the Specializations were individual. Like multiple specialisations in say World of Warcraft or Final Fantasy XIV. Not so. They actually apply all three to the character simultaneously once unlocked (which those of you who play are no doubt aware).

The good news is, while I didn’t know this before, I know it now, and so my other characters will plan accordingly for this event.

The equally good news is that the secondary Specialization I had lined up for my Guardian is actually pretty good with either weapon set. Though she isn’t as block heavy with the greatsword, she does still have Aegis abilities, so there is a chance she’ll proc a block now and again. Proc a block- for all your spontaneous defensive buffs. (Terms and conditions apply.)

It’s going to be interesting to see how this all comes together with the other professions. Speaking of, after upgrading to a full Guild Wars 2 account (without Heart of Thorns for the time being) I picked out my other character choices. I’ve always been a fan of the Elementalist (first profession I had in the first Guild Wars) so that was a natural choice. I had a hard time picking between the medium armour options, though. The Thief reminds me a little of the Assassin from Guild Wars Factions. While the Engineer seems to be something that I’ll need to play to understand. The Ranger seemed like a solid choice as I did like how they were handled in the previous instalment.

As far as the eye can see. (Further than that, too.)
As far as the eye can see. (Further than that, too.)

While I am enjoying the Ranger, I am a little disappointed in their skills so far, but that could only be because I’ve yet to unlock a Specialization, so that could be subject to change. The Warrior was the last of the five and that’s another one which feels a little hit and miss for me. I think those professions really rely on you having the full compliment of profession unlocks.

The last, the Warrior, is also a character that has no crafting disciplines as I simply have none left to learn. Which is going to be a major turning point in the acquisition and use of resources, as he will collect them, but not use them, so every crafting discipline character will be able to siphon from a larger pool of resources. Bonus points that he’s a Norn and their starting area seems to be overflowing with wood, ore, and all manner of other things. I’ve also decided to explore, do events, do renown hearts, gather materials, and enjoy the world as a whole.

Leaving their individual story portions until I feel as though I want to do them. I’d prefer to do them in batches, at the very least.

Finally, the highest levelled, the Guardian, is probably going to take a few days off while the others get out there and stretch their legs. I want to make sure that everyone is progressing nicely and now that crafting disciplines are better managed there’s no reason they shouldn’t. Equally, I’d like to start to work towards getting those full profession unlocks under way. That should go a long way to improving how I feel about some of the classes at the very least.

Have a nice week, all!


Guild Wars 2: Tyrian Travels (Pt. 2)

I would trade my left leg for a stack of Jute Scraps right about now.

Crafting systems- you’ve got to love them, right? Maybe not. I know a few people that can’t stand the process of gathering materials, crafting with them, and then breaking them down only to craft with them again. Which is why I’d like to say that I’ve always loved the Salvage Kits in Guild Wars. It makes all the equipment you might find in your travels, regardless of whether you can equip it, or whether it has the bonuses you want, useful to you in some way. If you can’t find a use for it- break it down. If you already have something better- break it down.

If you’re wandering through Lion’s Arch and someone lays down a slick beat- break it down.

I’m actually really enjoying the crafting disciplines so far, though. With the exception of the insane shortage of Jute Scraps (which is awful for two out of the four crafting disciplines I have). Gathering things like ore or wood is quite easy- and doesn’t require a crafting discipline (like mining) to do- so it doesn’t take me too far out of my way but I can make neat gear in the process.

I’m pretty sure I must have collected 400+ ore and wood so far. Not to mention oodles of ingredients for the Chef discipline, too. The only thing that is missing is Jute Scraps- even after spending a good hour farming up the various bags the drop from. I got something ridiculous like 6-8 out of something like 50 bags. It hits hardest for Tailor, though. I can sort of make ends meet with Armorsmith by using the excess resources to craft more components. Weaponsmith is coming along great, though. Mostly as that requires ore and wood which I have in abundance. Likewise, Chef is currently my highest at 225+ (just need some Sesame Seeds and we’ll be good).

"Ghosts! Ghosts everywhere!"
“Ghosts! Ghosts everywhere!”

Tailoring is kind of dead in the water until I can find some, however. Funniest part about it is- I have a ton of Wool Scraps and other materials.

So once I can reach 75+ Tailor I’ll be okay. It’s also quite odd, and/or possibly a bug/glitch, how I harvest low level cloth armour and seem to get Wool Scraps rather than Jute Scraps. Got a stock of materials for the Artificer and Jeweler disciplines, though. Thankfully there’s only one more discipline (that I know of) that requires Jute Scraps. So that’s something at least.

I’m enjoying the ability to advance levels purely through gathering resources and crafting items, however. It has allowed me to continue to level and develop my Mesmer without wasting hours farming items, travelling to places, and doing various events for the Karma rewards with no actual benefit to his progress. I also get to explore a lot of new areas. I’m rather leaning towards pushing my Guardian up six more levels (to around Lvl 47) and exploring some of the higher level locales. Should be fun and totally not deadly in any way, right?

I’ve also got a burning desire to see the Iron Marches. I’ve got a feeling that some of the locations I visited in the first Guild Wars are nested there.

Like Piken Square. I’m pretty sure it should be there as Grendich Courthouse was west of it, and that is in the neighbouring zone, so I can only imagine it’s out there somewhere. Fond memories of that place. Spent a great deal of time there (as many likely did) after the Searing and it would be nice to revisit.

Have a nice week, all!