I consider 36 gold well-spent if it gives me the Captain N/NES light zapper as a pistol skin for life. Complete with retro-sounding zaps. It’s probably one of the best things I’ve ever purchased in a game, to tell the truth.
Long story short, I found my way back to Guild Wars 2 after a nearly two -year break, which apparently was long enough of a stretch for any burnout to blow away and leave the game fertile for rediscovery. Short story long, I was searching for some sort of casual online experience over the past week, and after going back and forth on some other titles, I found that Guild Wars 2 had exactly what I needed right now. It didn’t require an up-front cost, it was a perfect “jump in and do whatever” type of game, and it was different enough from my other MMOs to not be treading over the same territory.
Oh NPC, you’re about to have your heart broken by ArenaNet, because we ain’t never going back to Cantha. Too many players have heckled the studio at this point for the studio to acquiesce.
Without feeling pressured to do the latest content or — for whatever reason — get geared up for raids, I figured that I would just start all over from scratch. When I’m gone from a game this long, that’s what I typically (although not always) end up doing. I also figured that it’d be a good way to discover all of the changes that have happened without feeling overwhelmed.
Initially I rolled up a Thief (at the top of the post) because double pew-pewing with guns sounded fun. But I couldn’t fight my inner geek, which shouted loud and incessantly at me to go back to an Engineer. I thought for a few moments about picking up my old character, but I think I was done with the Asura. So I went with a fresh, level-one human instead.
I don’t really care what’s FOTM or optimal, all I want to do with this character is burn things with purifying fire from my flamethrower, which is still one of my favorite MMO weapons of all-time. Back-up is my dual pistol setup, both of which will lean on a condition damage build.
As my son asked when I dashed into a burning orphanage and started laying waste with my flamethrower, “Dad, why are you adding MORE fire to the place?” Because video game logic, son. You’ll understand one day.
So far it’s been a wonderfully relaxing experience. Without using a level boost, I don’t have to worry about facing all of the personal story all at once. Instead, I’m doing a little bit of that but mostly focused on world exploration and making money by gathering all I can. I have no idea how inflated the economy is right now, but I don’t want to get to 80 and have to worry about not affording my exotic gear.
As I said, it’s been a great time of small little rediscoveries. Still not a perfect game, especially in its larger storytelling department, but the environmental exploration and stories come off very well. The UI, combat, animations, and rewards feel right, and slowly going around a zone ticking off all of the boxes is satisfying in a “popping bubble wrap” fashion.