mellificent: (GW - ele icon)
[personal profile] mellificent
I never got around to doing an entry yesterday - I worked late in the afternoon, even though it was Friday, and then I got on a big GW2 tear last night and played right up until I went to bed. I was trying to finish up an area called Blazeridge Steppes, and I did get that finished. Next is what I think of as "the pirate zone" - I think its official name is Bloodtide Coast, although I have a terrible time with all these names in this game - they are almost all compound names like that and they're really easy to mix up.

So since I'm on the game tear and I can't actually play where I am right now, I might as well write about it. I always end up writing to a greater or lesser degree about whatever game I'm playing - I know it doesn't interest everybody but at least it's not another entry about parents and death! I'm not in the mood for anything serious today anyway.

Guild Wars 1 was my first MMO (I nosed around in my archives and here, apparently, is the first time I played it, in March 2006. I still had dial-up back then and the load times were horrendous, but I remember having a good time and thinking about how amazing the artwork was, once I finally got to where I could play.) I had been playing some sort of MMO-like things before that like KoL and Dofus (both of which are still around - I know KoL is not an MMO at all in most ways, being entirely web-based and single-player and with no graphics fancier than a gif, but still, it's clearly heavily MMO-influenced and it served for me as sort of a gateway thing). My friend Col got me interested in MMOs, and walked me through it and was mostly endlessly patient about it - and we're still playing together all this time later, at least when he's not writing novels (as he is now) and when we can agree on a game to play. We've been through, let's see, various editions of GW1 and now 2, various releases of WoW, Auto Assault (long-gone now, that one is), LOTRO, DDO, Rift, SWTOR, and a fling with The Secret World last summer. We've both played various other things alone but those are the ones we've played together, unless I'm forgetting something.

So I guess I'm more or less an MMO veteran nowadays, although I don't generally do dungeons or raids or PvP or all of those kind of things that a lot of people spend all their game-time doing. (I did a sort of dungeon-type thing with some of my new guildies a few weeks ago and man, do I suck at it. I hear other people talking about this particular one - it's called fractals or FotM - so I know it's hard for everybody, but still I'm pretty sure I was worse than most people. I felt sorry for the poor people who were stuck with me.) But I do pretty well at normal (PvE) gameplay most of the time. I tend not to pay much attention to things like builds and how you're "supposed" to do things in any given game, and that tends to bite you in the butt when you get into big groups and they expect you to have certain skills. (Also apparently FotM is apparently really meant for level 80s with fancy gear and I was about 60 at the time with no fancy gear whatsoever, but nobody told me about that at the time. The game does level you up to 80 stat-wise but it doesn't magically improve your gear. I guess it could, but it doesn't.)

My main solo character in GW2 is named Rina, and in the last few weeks since Col has been mostly absent and I've been playing her pretty much exclusively, she has gone from 55 to 80, which is the max in this game. I think this is especially a feat given that she's an elementalist, meaning she has light armor (although I play her as fire, mostly, and she can really do a ton of damage to everybody else), and given my generally-unorthodox play style.
I have spent most of my accumulated gold on resurrecting myself, in the process - which requires porting out, unless some nice person heals  you - and on repairs. Story-wise, though, I've been going through all the PvE areas more or less in order of level - I've been going by the chart on this page - and as I noted at the top, I've just now finally finished the last 40-50 zone and I'm on to the pirate zone, which is apparently 45-55. (GW2 scales you down when you do lower areas just like it scales you up for the dungeon.) I'm mostly doing this in order to - hopefully someday - get the Explorer achievement, which requires doing every heart (hearts are the quests, more or less), every vista (as the name implies, usually up high someplace, and which often require some jumping around to get to), every "point of interest" and every skill point and waypoint. Blazeridge Steppes was actually not as elaborate as some of the previous zones, which was nice. I get the impression that the pirate one is more complex, although I've done a little bit of it already so that should help.

Rina is a sylvari, which is a new race in GW2, an odd plant-based life form which has somehow mysteriously appeared in the several hundred years that are supposed to have gone by since GW1 - actually very recently, relatively speaking. The oldest sylvari are only 25 or 30 years old, I think. They're shaped like humans but they spring to life fully-grown. And I haven't seen any discussion of this but you'd have to presume they were asexual, wouldn't you? No biological imperative there!

Col and I have two pairs that we were playing, a secondary human pair (his: elementalist; mine: warrior) and the primary pair (his: guardian; mine: ranger with accompanying snow-leopard pet). The primary pair are Norn - more or less human, but very large versions - Norn go back to the last expansion set of old GW. If you've seen the picture of the hot blond chick with braids from old GW, that's probably a Norn - Jora. There are Jora statues all over the Norn zones in GW2. Our Norn pair was up to level 50 - well, mine was anyway, but come to think of it I think she got somewhat ahead level-wise by doing more crafting than Col's was doing. I'm looking forward to getting back to them eventually, although I'm not sure when that is going to be!

I was thinking I was going to find some screenshots to accompany this but this has gotten so long already that I think I'll save the pictures for some other day.
(The icon is from old GW - it was one of the elementalist skill icons, as I recall. It might have been Phoenix.)

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December 2012

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