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  • Hello everybody

  • Let's try and answer the question

  • Should I play Guild Wars 2 in 2019?

  • My honest opinion is that you should play it

  • But let me try and explain my perspective on what I think influences this

  • First off, Guild Wars 2 has a free to play option which will allow you to play the core

  • version of the game

  • This only has a handful of limitations

  • You will only have access to eight of the classes and wont be able to play Revenant

  • You will also only have access to one map region

  • And that consists of Central Tyria

  • There are also some chat restrictions if you want to see all of them I will leave a link

  • down below in the description

  • You should bear in mind that this is basically an infinite trial

  • Free to play allows you to play the game to level 80 and access the core classes

  • You can play through the full original story and access the content that was made available

  • to players who first bought the game when it was originally released

  • If you buy the expansions, Heart of Thorns and Path of Fire, you will unlock two whole

  • new regions. The Heart of Maguuma and the Crystal Desert and this will come with a plethora

  • of content to tackle

  • Here on the left we have the Heart of Maguuma maps which have a good amount of events in

  • them

  • And then here in the bottom right hand side of the map we have the Path of Fire Crystal

  • Desert maps

  • There are also events here but arguably not as fun

  • One big selling point about these maps is that they appear to be the largest in the

  • game

  • Or they feel like it

  • The expansions come with two whole new story lines, access to six raid wings, you gain

  • gliding from Heart of Thorns and Mounts from Path of Fire

  • The Mounts in Guild Wars 2 are definitely one of their best features they are not pointless

  • they have their own skills

  • You can also upgrade these skills via the mastery points system

  • This is something that you will continue to unlock throughout the expansions.

  • The expansions also unlock the class Revenant, this is something you would not have access

  • to in the Free to Play version

  • And finally, we have the Living World episodes, I will build on this later on, but the Living

  • World is an ongoing series that gets updated periodically

  • The way that I look at it, the game stops at level 80 until you buy the expansions

  • There is so much content in Heart of Thorns and Path of Fire you very easily run out of

  • things to do in the core game

  • That said, ArenaNet do release regular content for free

  • And sometimes there is a decent wait in-between

  • However, Guild Wars 2 does not charge a subscription service

  • and therefore I think it's viable for there to be a little bit of a wait in-between each

  • release.

  • That said, there are some semi-regular balance updates as well as a new raid wing approximately

  • once a year

  • and of course, their Living World Seasons.

  • Included in this, Is some Quality of Life items and Fashion item releases as well

  • These consist of mount skins, weapon skins, Infinite salvage kits, extra bag slots and

  • then different types of particle effect infinite tools

  • Those will make more sense once you've actually bought a good few amount of mining tools and

  • so forth

  • And the best part is that with the gold to gem conversion you don't have to spend another

  • penny on this game after you buy it

  • You can if you wish but arguably you can get everything you want just by playing the game

  • ArenaNet's prime target market is the gamer who does not want to be left behind and feel

  • that they need to grind for weeks just to achieve their goals

  • You are able to reach level 80 by playing any game mode you wish with the exception

  • to some free to play limitations

  • If you wish to do the standard method and just grind out heart completion, go for it

  • However, if you're a player vs player fanatic, you are able to go in at level 2 and just

  • start playing through your reward tracks

  • These tracks take your PvP experience and reward you with items periodically

  • You will occasionally be granted a Tome of Knowledge which is equal to one level gained

  • Upon usage of this item you will gain one character level

  • PvP in Guild Wars 2 is played in one... I mean two game modes.

  • These consist of Conquest and Stronghold

  • Not including World vs World

  • In Conquest, you fight for node ownership and play 5 vs 5

  • Essentially Capture-Point Deathmatch

  • And then there Stronghold, where you use supply to request NPCs who break down walls and eventually

  • kill the main NPC Lord.

  • Stronghold is due a rework and is not really the main PvP game of choice.

  • If you do choose this method to level up your character, you will be scaled up as an equal.

  • You will be at no deficit if you choose to be level 2, level 30 or level 79

  • Your amulet choices and rune choices, and skill choices are what determine your power

  • output and sustainability

  • Everything is auto-unlocked in instanced PvP

  • You could of course also unlock everything in World vs World.

  • However your gear, skills and attachments will not scale as well as it would if you

  • were full Ascended. You must still unlock your abilities via the Hero Panel in order

  • to use them in World vs World.

  • So this isn't quite the same as Structured PvP.

  • World vs World is essentially a massive Player vs Player vs Environment engagement.

  • Multiple servers group up against one another and fight for objectives on the map

  • Each server is allocated its own Borderlands to defend

  • And then those servers that are fighting against one another contest each other in the Eternal

  • Battlegrounds.

  • You can use siege equipment to both be offensive and defensive.

  • And there are player commanders who will try to organise these defensive and offensive

  • manoeuvres.

  • This is very large scale PvP.

  • Now lets move onto gear.

  • The gear ranges from basic to Legendary

  • Ascended and Legendary have the same stats and they are what you will be using for pretty

  • much your entire lifetime of Guild Wars 2.

  • Due to the lack of gear treadmill, your gear is almost always relevant.

  • The only reason that you might go for Legendary gear is so that you have a special particle

  • effect or because you would like the Quality of Life that is associated with them.

  • Legendary gear allows you to change the stat weights whenever you like just by double clicking

  • on the item and selecting what you'd like to change it to.

  • This means that you do not have to carry around multiple sets of gear.

  • The Legendary gear in Guild Wars 2 does require a little bit of a grind, however these are

  • completely optional and they are things that you choose to undertake yourself.

  • They're never forced upon you.

  • There is no reason to mindlessly grind anything you don't wish to. You can actually log off

  • for a few weeks, come back and you're still as relevant as you were before.

  • The stat ceiling is fixed, but your skill ceiling is up to you.

  • Now this is what I think is the main selling point of Guild Wars 2.

  • It was my favourite feature and it remains to be.

  • The combat is fluid, dynamic, responsive and allows for skilful play.

  • There are a number of combos in this game both field and finisher, and skill succession

  • combos.

  • You might be used to skill limitations in games like World of Warcraft and Final Fantasy

  • 14, where each button press requires a global cooldown.

  • In Guild Wars 2, that's not the case. Some skills have instant usage and some skills

  • have cast times or action times.

  • After the animation is finished you are able to use your next ability, or use multiple

  • instant cast spells or actions simultaneously.

  • This is an example of a combo.

  • It's a relatively famous one known as the Backstab Steal combo.

  • Essentially what it shows is you going into stealth, activating an ability to travel and

  • then backstabbing.

  • Combos like this exist across all of the classes. And I think that this is a prime example of

  • how fluid the combat is.

  • Guild Wars 2 has a relatively easy to understand combat system.

  • All you need to do is get your head around the combo fields. That said, in PvP and even

  • in PvE, there are some benefits to using things like terrain.

  • In PvP for example, skill telegraphs and visuals, action-cancelling and kiting are keys to success.

  • So the limitations of the combat system aren't just the skills.

  • Your ability to interpret situations and react are paramount.

  • And outplaying your opponent isn't just via use of skills.

  • Action cancelling is a good way of making people use defensive cool downs.

  • Guild Wars 2 also has an evasion mechanic. This relies on an endurance bar and a slow

  • regeneration of that resource.

  • This evade mechanic makes you essentially immune to damage at the time of use, which

  • you are able to freely use in all areas of the game.

  • It's not as broken as it sounds but it can definitely lead to a very fast death if you

  • waste them.

  • This is true in PvP and PvE.

  • Guild Wars 2 has two different sets of damage. There's flat power damage and there's condition

  • damage that can stack in intensity.

  • Examples include, bleeding, burning, poison, confusion and torment.

  • And if you'd like to look at these they are available on the wiki. So, look at it this

  • way.

  • Your choice of gear, or amulet, will influence this damage. This is also applicable to things

  • like healing power. You can create hybrid builds, or just a generic condition or power

  • based build.

  • Your class trait lines will further enable you to customise your class.

  • Some of them prefer conditions and some prefer the power play.

  • Traits are essentially methods of creating synergy. You can determine your class behaviour

  • with a certain set of traits. For example, swapping an elite spec might open up a different

  • weapon set.

  • The thief can't usually use staff, but when it uses Daredevil, it gains access to this

  • weapon. And in turn, it gains access to new abilities.

  • As a reminder, the elite specialisations are found in the expansions.

  • If you're thinking about this from a PvE level, all you do is change your gear instead of

  • your amulet. It's exactly the same.

  • Now let's move onto boons. Boons are the buffs of Guild Wars 2.

  • Each one does something slightly different to benefit your combat.

  • This may consist of increased damage output, damage reduction, condition resistance, and

  • so on.

  • Some of these boons can stack in intensity.

  • And the same as before, here is a brief listing.

  • Again, I will provide the link in the description.

  • Your class may not always play the same style. The elite specialisations in the game can

  • completely change up your class' meta play.

  • Core guardian which is usually very offensive, gains options to become a very sustainable

  • support class when switching to the Firebrand elite spec.

  • You as the player determine the output of your class.

  • There is more customisation than people think.

  • Now moving on from some of the tangents, there are options for killing time in Guild Wars

  • 2.

  • You can chase down achievements, do some collections, and grind out irrelevancies for the sake of

  • it.

  • You could play the trading post, you could farm your favourite skins, or you can just

  • grief people in PvP.

  • And of course there's always raids and fractal dungeons.

  • How is it so far for you?

  • If you are an ex-World of Warcraft or Final Fantasy 14, or whatever player, you may be

  • used to the item level grind, and constant desire to be relevant by farming drops which

  • may never come.

  • If this is something you love and need in your MMO of choice, Guild Wars 2 will not

  • offer you that.

  • Guild Wars 2 will always be played at your own pace.

  • If you wanna leave and come back when the Living World episodes release, go for it.

  • Some people play every single day, others don't. They make their own content.

  • They form communities, and play the game the way they want to.

  • The limitations of the raids in this game is that there is only a single tier of difficulty.

  • That said, there are objects called Challenge Motes which increase the difficulty of some

  • encounters, not all of them.

  • These add additional health and additional mechanics.

  • Raid bosses drop exclusive skins and achievements that can provide you with exclusive items.

  • That said, due to the lack of gear treadmill, all of the previous raid wings are still as

  • relevant as the most recent.

  • This means that none of the bosses actually become outdated.

  • They remain equally as difficult as they were the first time that you did them, and the

  • only thing that improves that is your experience with the bosses.

  • As previous mentioned, there are currently 6 raid wings with another one in development

  • hopefully coming in 2019.

  • So that means currently there are 22 encounters with 16 bosses.

  • The encounters count as actual raid engagements but they are not bosses in themselves.

  • This includes things like escorting an NPC from one side to another whilst defending

  • it.

  • Each boss can drop ascended weapons and gear, and it's a pretty good method gold as well.

  • Now let's quickly recap on the Living World.

  • The Living World story is a regular release schedule of ArenaNet where they provide the

  • player base with a story which is separate to the story-lines contained in the core game

  • as well as Heart of Thorns and Path of Fire.

  • You will however need the expansions to play the story. These episodes are released one

  • at a time and typically arrive with a new map, new skins and new achievements.

  • In a recent case, they included a new mount, with one of the episodes.

  • You can find ascended gear in these episodes whilst also enjoying an ongoing lore saga

  • that may or may not hold your attention.

  • And lastly, there are re-playable dungeons in Guild Wars 2 known as Fractals.

  • They range from level 1 to 100 and require a special resistance in order to progress.

  • Each level increases in difficulty.

  • This special resistance is known as Agony.

  • Agony can be socketed into your ascended gear

  • And the best bit is you can even do some of these in challenge mode.

  • And these really are hard.

  • There are also things called Mistlock Instabilities.

  • These are essentially affixes that will attempt to make the fractal dungeons harder.

  • These are on a rotation and more of them apply to your dungeons as you progress through the

  • higher tiers.

  • At the highest level, there can only be three at once.

  • And as always, here is a list of that on the wiki.

  • I should note that these are not going to be available to you until you hit level 80.

  • Fractals can reward you with exclusive golden fractal weapon skins, and also with ascended

  • gear via rare drops.

  • Many players farm these on a regular and daily basis.

  • Then again you might say well, my friend has been playing this for a while and I'm gonna

  • be way behind where they are, but Guild Wars 2 have already thought of that.

  • As a maximum level, you can go out of your way to the low level areas and you can scale

  • to their content.

  • This means that your friends can come and play with you as a brand new player and they

  • will gain something from it as well.

  • There is also a benefit in the sense that you do hit a lot harder than these