[GW] 32 Flavors

I came to the farewell event from the opposite position of Ravious. I am not a veteran player. I started in December and played hard under the then-common expectation of an early spring release date for GW2. I have not played much since April after trying almost everything, burning out a bit, losing the monkey, and trying GW2, at which point there was little Exploring left and any Achieving felt a bit like cleaning something before throwing it away. I have memories, but they are not old enough to be nostalgia. I have no birthday presents.

I said “almost everything,” and the Reverie showed me some things I had missed or scarcely noticed. Large areas are (or became) optional; you can complete the game and get 30/50 without visiting every zone and certainly without seeing all the sights. Of the 32 locations to visit, I had not been to 8, including one of the most important, Ventari’s sanctuary. I did not realize that was even in the game, rather than an idea developed between games. The tour does one thing dramatically right: it starts with the Searing crystal and ends at Ventari’s sanctuary. The former starts the storyline, the latter is the birthplace of GW2’s new race. When you meet Ventari, he still has another century of life ahead of him, and the first Sylvari will not be born for a century after that. This is a transition point between games that could only be strengthened by then ending on a reference to slumbering elder dragons.

As gameplay, it’s a guided sightseeing tour with nothing new. It is rather pleasant, if you are in the right mood. The only weakness is a fondness for picking the most inconvenient point in an area as a point of interest. Apparently the best landmarks in the game were, whenever possible, placed at least two zones from the nearest outpost and at the far end of that zone. In this, you can see how game design varied between the four parts of the game. Prophecies is the worst for putting the sites at the end of a long run filled with troublesome foes. Factions is the quickest, some just a short walk from the zone door. Nightfall falls in between and feels less thematic, with the lands beyond the portal a neglected afterthought. Eye of the North is a mix of instant gratification and dangerous journeys, with two points needing no combat, two that synergize, and one under a dungeon boss.

In terms of rewards, completing all four awards a Tormented weapon, which is a much quicker HoM point than completing an Armbrace of Truth. I did not have that one, and I ran Domain of Anguish several times. You also get eight plat. While I was there, I cleaned up several quests and vanquished several zones. That required dungeon, by the way, has 19 hidden treasures that can yield rare materials, so bring the Light of Deldrimor and work on your other HoM points.

: Zubon

4 thoughts on “[GW] 32 Flavors”

  1. There is some really heavy foreshadowing in the sites that were selected. The floating castle was in the betas and will probably also be in the release. The bloodstone plays a major role. The scar goes near the statues, etc etc. Also, I remember finding the hidden treasure room of Adashim while exploring and am glad others will be drawn to see it.

    Interestingly, the dragon-obelisks (there is probably a correct name for them, but I don’t know it) were not on the list. Strange, but some mysteries remain.

    Overall, I thought it was a really nice way to tie everything together and give veterans a sense of resolution. I haven’t seen that many GWAMMs in one place for a long time.

  2. I’m absolutely torn here. I’m split down the middle between appreciating (and relating to) this post and the previous one from Rav, and on the other hand dealing with my personal dislike for this kind of game content.

    I think I’ll do both at the same time, salute the passing of the baton and keep my thoughts on the matter to myself.

  3. Prophecies definitely had the most environmental ‘Easter eggs’ – in the other campaigns places were more likely to be significant because of plot-related events, whereas in Tyria many of the landmarks were apparently put there just for those that ventured away from the areas the story pushed you through (things like the Falls or the ice cave shrine to Lyssa – did you notice an odd hum from structures in there?). When I mapped Tyria for the cartographer title, I discovered a lot of those hidden sights and really enjoyed it.

    Reggie makes an interesting point, and having hidden these things away in the old Tyria I’ll not be surprised if they make a point of including them in the new, if only to delight those people who will recognise them. And Zubon, I got a real kick out of accidentally stumbling across Ventari’s Sanctuary the first time, seeing the sapling, and realising where I was :D

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