Moving Right Along in Guild Wars 2

Another weekend has passed and again I spent as much of it as could be managed in Guild Wars 2. Which wasn’t that long, actually.

I’m still working on Lornar’s Pass, which contains a staggering 43 points of interest; I’m nowhere near done with it, although I’m closing in on the hearts, skill challenges and waypoints. Meanwhile I’m pushing through the personal storyline; I elected to join the Vigil in the 20-30 arc and have not gotten much past that.

One thing I’m noticing is that the overall difficulty of the game ramps up a bit around the high 30s. There are a number of possible explanations for this, the obvious one being that my gear is mostly crappy. But also while Lornar’s Pass is a 25-40 zone, at the southern end there are a fair number of mobs in the neighborhood of level 42, and I was hitting them at 39. I did do some gear upgrading via the Trading Post, which did seem to have helped. But just as likely I need to get better at playing my class, too.

Another thing that helped was that I had a large pile of trait points sitting around doing nothing, waiting for me to get the second-tier mastery tome. I’d thought this was supposed to happen at level 20 (maybe it was so in beta, I dunno,) but was just nearing the necessary amount of money around level 40. Turns out you’re not eligible for it until level 40 anyway, so if you scrimp your coppers until then, you should have enough. And these extra points and the talents that came with them also seem to have helped.

Another gear upgrade occurred when I ran Caudecus’s Manor. This is the second of GW2’s eight dungeons that are currently in the game; I haven’t run the first (Ascalonian Catacombs,) yet and it’s said to be longer and more difficult. I’ll buy this, as even the allegedly easier Manor was a lot harder than the typical WoW 10-minute faceroll. I got a new piece of head armor and two new weapons out of it — both aquatic, alas, but they were significant upgrades — and a barge load of XP. Probably 80% of a level, in fact.

Some bloggers have expressed doubts that GW2’s scaling will work as advertised, but so far it seems to me to be utterly airtight. However, gear scales as part of the system, and characters who are at level 80 for any length of time are likely to have a full set of “perfect” gear (remember, there’s just the one level of endgame gear in GW2,) while leveling characters may well be undergeared, especially as fast as you can progress if you’re working all of GW2’s many XP-granting levers. So I do expect this to loosen up for 80s, at least to the point of being noticeable.

Our guild already boasts no less than thirteen level 80s, by the way; I dont feel like too much of a sluggard, given that I seem to be moving along more or less along with the pack of bloggers, most of whom (with one unsurprising exception) are also in the middle of the pack, so I don’t feel too badly about being level 42 and moving along rather nicely. For a game out only a couple of weeks, this is for me a thunderous pace. I imagine I have been moving so quickly due to not becoming bored or frustrated enough with the game enough to fritter away time trying to find an alt that’s fun. Not that I’m not tempted — I do have my four alts as well, but the highest of them is level 10. I’ve decided against buying another character slot (all the classes in GW2 are very tasty,) until I hit 80 with my main. Hell, that may happen by the time the first expansion comes out.

4 responses to “Moving Right Along in Guild Wars 2

  1. I hit level 68 yesterday and hope to be in the low 70s by the end of today. I’m not racing through but I want to get one character to the top so I can feel free to futz around with others – I want to play all the classes for one thing.

    On difficulty, I spent about eight hours yesterday fighting stuff between two and five levels above me in the 60s, both solo and in big event zergs. The one and only time I died was when I missed a jump going for a vista. My ranger’s entirely dressed in Level 60 blue gear he made himself, with similar jewellery made by Mrs Bhagpuss and with Green quality dropped weapons. Only the jewellery is augmented. It may vary by class, but I find the ranger can consistently plow through anything up to three levels higher and consistently take single targets five levels above, although at that stage the fights take too long to be worthwhile for leveling purposes..

    What certainly does change at higher levels is the complexity and frequency of events, which seem to get grander and more explosive and frequently stack several in a very tight area. Unfortunately quite a lot are broken so I’ve been submitting a few bug reports. GW2 may be the first MMO I’ve ever played that actually gets more interesting the higher level you get!

    • I can confirm that last part; not just events but also the story quests become a lot more involved and interesting. I am about to hit 50 and things are taking off nicely, while I still feel like I haven’t seen anything he he…

  2. Some advice about the trait tome:
    1- you can buy it at the TP, the prices are a lot lower there;
    2- you don’t need save your trait points while you wait for buy the book: when you uses the book, all your trait points are reset and you need spend them again.

    Gear is certainlly coming cheap from the TP. I am trying to advance may crafting for make me yellow and possibly orange gear, but mats are low. I think I will be forced to buy the mats, farming them is being too much slow.

    Currently, my main toon is level 70. My other toons are level 39, 26 and 20. I guess that when my main toon get to level 80 I will use a lot of my time for craft a legendary weapon…

  3. Leveling is >supposed< to be a fairly linear event, at an estimated 90 minutes per level. So, doing the math, the expect it to take 120 hours of game time to hit the cap. Easily doable by a lot of people at this point in time. I think I'm still chilling out at the level 32-33 range (or about 45 hours which is a lot for me).