Rediscovering my love for Guild Wars 2
Throughout 2020, one of the things I struggled with was my waning desire to play. Guild Wars 2. I’ve been playing it since the betas before it launched eight years ago, so it’s no surprise that I’m experiencing lulls. Honestly, this is not the first lull I have experienced; anyone wants to put up signs for refugees? Nobody? This time around, however, it was different and it was the deepest lull I have seen in a long time. Fortunately, over the past few months, things have happened for me and I look forward to playing almost every day. Let’s go back to the previous months to see how I rediscovered what makes Guild Wars 2 a great game.
My resurgence with GW2 started with Wintersday. I had a great time with the Champions Update we received in November, but it hasn’t rekindled my desire to log in very often. I played and had fun, but I wasn’t motivated to do more. Winter was different this year. I couldn’t play every day, but I wanted to. I couldn’t wait to do the race, the choir bells, the jumping puzzle and even do the Infinirarium. Everything Wintersday was a blast, and it was the first glimpse of me still having the ability to play GW2.
Then towards the end of January, the “Power” chapter of the Champions episode was released, and it just continued my awakening. The flow of this chapter seemed well paced and I enjoyed the DRM we got. This is where I started to log in occasionally to do the daily DRMs and participated in the efforts with the allied factions. I was also pleasantly surprised that I could easily earn enough Tyrian Defense Seals to make up for all the emissary rewards I had missed by completing the daily DRM missions. It meant I didn’t feel hopelessly late and couldn’t make up for it. I could do a little whenever I had the time, and I could make significant progress. However, I still didn’t log in most of the time.
If Wintersday got the ball rolling, then the Lunar New Year kicked him in the pants. I’ve never really done much with Lunar New Year, and I’ve never cared about the envelope meta to earn gold before. However, I had realized that I was very close to finishing my howler, and I needed 100g to be able to purchase the Icy runic stones for that. Therefore, the Lunar New Year seemed like a good choice to easily earn extra gold; but I was determined to stick to my ideal of “if the activity is not fun, I will stop”. Surprisingly, the actual activities were a lot of fun, especially the running and the heavenly challenge. I logged in most of the time for no other reason than to do so.
What was even more surprising, I enjoyed doing the Lunar New Year Gold Meta. The way this meta works is to take all of your Lunar New Year envelopes, take them to SIlverwastes, and make an entire meta-event clear (from capturing and holding bases to the end of Vinewrath). After eliminating Vinewrath, you will have a big bonus of magical discovery. With this giant magical discovery bonus, you want to open your supply of envelopes. I always liked SIlverwastes, but I got burned on it before Heart of thorns, so I hadn’t been back for a while. I had a lot of fun finding groups working there. I was also lucky and got into most groups early in the meta-event. Also, I had completely forgotten about the maze of nightmares that opens at the end of the wrath of the vine and which was a pleasure to participate.
Lunar New Year helped me get the gold I needed to complete my Howler well, except that I found out that I needed a high level tanner to craft the wolf statue. I had assumed it would be Huntsman as it was with The Dreamer, so that was a bit of a crass realization. I found myself needing to level leatherworking from scratch as my only leatherworker was at skill level 50. Even though I always liked the system GW2, I liked it mainly because of the discovery system. However, the opportunity to level is usually not an advantage.
So it was with a sense of foreboding and foreboding that I set out to find a way to quickly level leatherworking. Luckily i found GW2 Crafts quickly, and it’s a fantastic tool to help level crafting quickly and has helped cut gold costs associated with purchasing materials. Using this site, I was able to finish leveling the leatherwork and finally craft my howler quickly. I have also used it to level my gunsmith now that I am working on The shining blade. My only gripe is that I wish there was a way to add things like item boosters to adjust the amount of items needed to craft. Highly recommend it for craft leveling as it was a big help.
Since the end of the Lunar New Year, I’ve been logging in almost every day and doing the Daily Dragon Response Missions and the Old Dailies in the main maps, and I’ve had a blast doing both. I didn’t initially notice the mastery points in DRM so going back and getting them was great. Some of the mastery points are obvious and easy to access, while others have taken a bit of time. I will say, however, that if you are doing DRM in public, wait until it is finished to get the mastery points, especially if it is not DRM on the main path. Doing the old dailies was also a lot of fun because I’m revisiting old areas that I haven’t seen in a while. It’s like a trip down memory lane with a bonus of 2 gold coins per day.
All of this brings me to the real strength of GW2. Not only are there a ton of different things to do, but there are also a ton of different ways to accomplish most tasks. As I mentioned before, I am currently working on The Shining Blade Legendary. Part of this completion is map completion in Heart of Thorns or Path of Fire maps. Even though all I have left in HoT is Dragonstand, completing this map can be particularly painful as it depends on the completion of the meta-event. So I decided to use the PoF cards because it had been a long time since I had spent time on these cards. It has been an absolute joy so far. Walking around and figuring out how to do everything and collecting all the mastery points that I hadn’t cared about was a lot of fun. I found quite a few domains that I had never encountered before, which is quite amazing.
Having the freedom to play in different areas and participate in various types of content to achieve goals helps keep things from getting stale. If something starts to be boring or I feel bad, I can move on and keep making progress towards my goals. Not only that, but even though I only have an hour to play, I can still do a few things and still feel like I’ve made significant progress in completing my various projects. It also doesn’t matter that I wait so long to do these things. Maps and various events may not have the popular support they got right after the expansion launched, but there are still enough people around, and a lot can be completed on your own. Pretty much the only thing that keeps me from enjoying Guild Wars 2 was myself. Now, I can’t wait to log in and make progress on something every day.