This past weekend I was in Las Vegas with my wife, who was there to attend a business conference. I? I was there to be a slacker. I’m very good at slacking. Actually, I mostly sat around in a (very nice) hotel room and enjoyed a couple of days of as near peace and quiet as I’ve gotten in my little kid-filled world. I know that sounds pathetic, but just a couple days to write and game and read was the vacation I wanted.
My adventures in Guild Wars 2 were both lucrative and exciting. What happened?
5,000 points of awesome
Whilst poking around Dry Top in search of lost coins and buried chests, I hit my 5,000th achievement point. That’s probably a good 10K less than most dedicated GW2 players have, but for me it was something I’ve been anticipating for a while. The reward chests for achievement milestones are a great alternative reward system and make collecting achievements more meaningful, as a side meta game. Anyway, 5K points, and the screen exploded in rewardy goodness.
I was so happy that I didn’t even think to grab a screenshot; it was a little like opening up Christmas presents. Among the goodies, I got a new staff skin, boosters, a level 20 experience scroll, and a makeover kit. All of these will be useful for a future character, I’m sure. I also got 400 gems, woohoo, so I’ll be hanging onto those for a rainy day.
Dragon’s Reach, part 1 thoughts
I did have time to wrap up the third episode of season two, which continues the growing threat of JungleDragon (of which we’re just seeing lots and lots of vines and other plant-related critters). Unlike the first two episodes, this one has a lot more open-world activities, including many group and solo events. That was a pleasant change, as I like doing activities alongside others, although depending on who was around the events could be confusing, drawn out, or insanely easy.
Story-wise, I’m not being as drawn into the proceedings as I suspect many lore-addled fans will be. Another dragon? OK, fine, but stop putting words in my character’s mouth that makes her sound all awed and worried about things. Another day, another dragon. It’s like how Buffy and the Scoobies started seeing any apocalyptic threat as fairly routine.
The third episode is all about hopping around the world trying to assemble faction leaders for a Pale Tree summit. Because I guess I can’t send those magic carrier pigeons to them, the group splits up to approach leaders and I end up doing a lot of tasks to convince them that, oh hey, they should get off their butts and attend a business meeting to save the world.
Probably the most interesting thing that happened was seeing Destiny’s Edge interact with Destiny’s Edge 2: Rox Out. Braham and mommy go have breakfast, d’aww. I have to say that I’m not really comfortable with the group seeing me as their leader, because why am I the leader again? I strongly suspect it’s because ArenaNet has to have the NPCs call me SOMEthing, and “boss” is better than “hey you.” I noticed that in the personal storyline too, as you’d get title upgrades while the entire world tried to dance around actually saying your given name.
The Quest for the Backpack
Now that episode 3 is done, I can turn my attention to figuring out what to do with these four items that the quests gave me. Apparently they turn into a nifty backpack that can be grown over time, but only after (of course) going through a trademark ArenaNet crafting grind.
All I can say is, thank goodness we have Dulfy, because the game sure isn’t trying to tell you what steps you need for complex things like this. How did people even figure this out to begin with? Maybe there were instructions that I overlooked, or else people just crowdsourced the solution.
Anyway, since I have a week or so until the next update, I’ll be puttering around Dry Top doing events for geodes and working on assembling this. Since I’m not a crafter, I thought I should go ahead and use my gold hoard to shortcut some of these steps, because why have gold if you’re not willing to spend it on things you want?
Well that was a spectacularly bad idea, because the mats for some of these steps on the trading post are insanely expensive — I got about halfway through the chain and realized that finishing it would cost me somewhere in the neighborhood of 140 gold. The only alternative would be to become a level 400 crafter in several different professions, and that is not a viable option for my playstyle. So I guess I’ll be stuck with this halfmade backpack until the prices lower on the TP.