Many games have challenges and achievements for making things harder, like beating a boss without using any potions or cutting down the mightiest tree in the forest with a herring. Early the the Guild Wars Nightfall primary quest chain, the Master’s rewards are mostly for intentionally delaying and acting against your interests during wartime. You are in disguise and headed to a rendezvous with a traitor general, being guided through the swamps by her lieutenant … so why not slip away at hunt down some cobra=headed velociraptors? You are leading an assault on the enemy base, where time is of the essence as reinforcements are arriving and artillery fire is raining down … so why not take your time and scour the corners for enemies who are not engaging? You are sneaking a group of monks through enemy territory, with a primary objective of avoiding notice from the troops garrisoned there … with a special bonus for visiting every guard post and slaughtering the troops.
As a player, your meta-game knowledge tells you that time is not of the essence unless there is a timer in the corner of your screen, and enemies only react as scripted. I slipped away from the lieutenant as the dialogue for the boss fight with the traitorous general was starting. It merrily followed me into the swamps as I searched the corners for rinkhal monitors. She was threatening to destroy me and all that I love while I was fighting giant insects several blocks away.
That’s the other thing you Guild Wars has been training me to do: avoid winning too quickly. Once you reach your objective, everything resets, so you cannot complete the bonus objectives, or if you are in an explorable area, you will need to re-clear areas to complete other quests. While questing, let crises pile up so that you can clear them all at once, and when fighting the war, stop to smell the roses. Well, don’t stop, because you’ll need to hunt down those roses in the corners of the map while clearing another dozen spawns of trash mobs.