The household sounds were filled with sounds of enlightenment and confusion as Mrs. Ravious and I dug in to the Guild Wars 2 Feature Pack. Jeromai has the right of it. This feature pack shook things up. Hopefully all for the better, but time will have to tell on a lot of it. As Zubon warned us, most of our night was re-learning our characters.
Our first stop was the wardrobe. We ran through our bank and gear to fill our sticker book of skins, and I gained back about two dozen inventory slots. It was confusing at first with how some skins were working. The equipment was easier to understand because it remained an item even when the copy of the skin went into the wardrobe.
After bookkeeping, I finally placed the Green Quaggan on my back item. I’ve been wanting to for ages, but I didn’t want to overwrite the Tome of the Rubicon skin. Now I have both in my stickerbook… err wardrobe. We call it a stickerbook in the house because it is easier to understand the functionality, and with two girls and four relatives who are teachers, we have a surplus of stickers in our house. A wardrobe to me means I can take stuff out and put it back in. That’s not really the case here. It feels more like “what sticker do I want on my equipment?”
After converting transmutation items-of-old I came out with about 80 transmutation charges so I expect I will be going a bit more crazy with look in a bit. It is a much nicer system to have. I then took a slight detour to gather all my dyes and WvW experience off my other characters. Then back to more important things.
My favorite build, the condimancer – a condition-based necromancer – got hit with a nerf. No longer do we get fire added to our bleeds. Now Dhuumfire requires that I go into Death Shroud and blast them to get a burning effect. Life Blast inflicts no other damage-over-time conditions. So I decided to try something of a condimancer with tank flavoring.
The new necromancer trait I find the most fun is Parasitic Contagion, which nets me back 5% of the condition damage as healing. It’s also the only new necromancer trait that seems good for normal PvE. Then I decided to add 4 points to Blood so that I was gaining life leaching from hits and crits too. I am sure my DPS plummeted, but I was having fun with the amount of healing I was generating. I’ve always felt the necromancer is the dark opposite of the guardian, and I feel changes like these reinforce that idea. The final build was 30/20/0/20/0.
At the end of the night we took our flash new characters for spin on the World Boss Circuit. Our first stop was the Shadow Behemoth in Queensdale. My how that has changed. It is still an easy open-world “raid”, but the boss requires movement. At intervals it opens 13 portals to the Underworld, and it becomes invulnerable until those portals are killed. Champions were also spewing out of the portals. We killed it after about 9 minutes, which is much different from the 1-2 minute kills from before.
The other boss we made it to was the Mark II Golem. This fight was still mostly the same, but the safe spots were dealt with by the devs, and the Golem had a pretty vicious ground pound combo that I don’t remember from before. This fight had a lot more deaths, and I’m glad it had a waypoint nearby. Overall, I like the World Boss Circuit. I am pretty sure that in bits of downtime I will be looking at which boss is the target next.
I feel like ArenaNet might be distilling their game a bit, such as Raid of the Capricorn leaving PvP play, which leads one to believe that underwater combat was a failed experiment. There was no love for dungeons in this feature pack either. I hope once the dust settles from this Feature Pack we get another looking ahead post from ArenaNet.
Like an expansion a lot of the changes are going to require time with the player base to really get a handle on all the new goodies. New runes and traits are going to shake up the metas (9-second fear necro). New PvP rewards will hopefully generate a lot more interest in that arena. So far I am liking most of it.