What I’ve Been Up To

…Guild Wars, for the most part. I formally gave up WoW, having hit a wall of No Fucks Given burn-out that’s not exactly surprising after 7 straight years. It was not a bitter parting in the slightest.

My little RP guild shrank a good bit when Pandaland hit, and has yet to recover. I’m a little unsure how to fix this, as all my previous guild recruitment experience was for a raiding guild in WoW, not an RP guild. Still, we’re rolling along.

For awhile my husband was playing with me, but he’s now pretty wrapped up in Eve. And now Halo 4 came out. Yep.

My alt problem definitely persists.

Ranger: 80
Engineer: 48 (stalled due to husband distraction)
Mesmer: 40 (when did Mesmers get fun? omg)
Guardian: 17 (stalled due to husband distraction)
Elementalist: 10 (I got distracted by mesmer, wtf)
Warrior: 2 (DISTRACTED)

I’m also participating in NaNoWriMo, same as I do every year. I’m all caught up even after a half-lazy weekend. I’m taking NaNo “seriously” in the sense that I am genuinely trying to create a first draft that will be worked into a “real” novel over time. I’ve departed from my normal epic-y fantasy into some…urban fantasy paranormal cop romance thing. I am of course completely loathing it right now, but that’s just how my brain works, I’m afraid.

Speaking of those words…I should get back to them…


GW2: Character Mugshots

Yes, it is entirely possible to have an alt problem before the game even launches.


Guild Wars 2: Will you be looking for a home?

Since I’ve seen several people on Twitter talk about playing GW2, but express mild concern about finding a good server/guild, I thought that now would be a good time to speak up.

Myself and several friends from Earthen Ring will be setting up shop on Tarnished Coast. I will be GMing an RPing guild there, and all RP-interested folk are more than welcome to join us. Even if you’re not into RP, you’re more than welcome to join us on the server–although guesting will, of  course, allow visitors from other servers if all you want is a leveling buddy.

Echoing Howls will be a relatively casual “band of adventurers” guild, led by a charismatic Norn ranger and open to all races. I hope to push RP events on the server (player run taverns, etc etc), as well as just “do a bunch of stuff together”. WoW ruined my ability to play a game by myself, I swear.

If you’re interested, feel free to poke us over here and join us on the forums where we’re posting character concepts and doing some pre-launch RP. You can just slap “Amber I’m following you here from your blog post” in the recruitment form if you want–don’t worry about the IC stuff at this point.

ETA: Also, having us just be one guild of many is also fine! That is the wonder of the GW2 guild system, after all.


Guild Wars 2 BWE: A Few Belated Thoughts

On Leveling:

Coming straight from many years playing WoW, leveling in GW2 is a change. I really have to throw away all of the old ideas I had about leveling. It’s not a matter of going from quest to quest to quest. Toss that notion right out of your head.

At first you open the map, look around at the quest hearts (yes hearts—don’t look at me, I don’t know either), and mouse over them. Here’s one at level 2….3…..4….hmm, it looks like there’s only a handful of things to start with.

If you think you can progress from one to the next as you would quests in WoW, and not quickly have the quests out level you, you’re sorely mistaken (ask me how I know–and how often my Guardian died).

“Does this mean I have to GRIND?”

Well…no. There’s a lot more to a zone than just the quests the heart offer. The heart is often just a bread crumb. As you’re doing that quest, other events will often pop up. And then another and another and another.  Even though I leveled 3 lowbie humans back to back one night while I was checking out classes, the flow of events was still different each time.

Don’t ignore events you’ve done before, either, especially not if a group forms.  Tag along, experiment with some different skills. Swap to a new weapon to unlock. Maybe you failed a part of the chain last time, and success will lead to new events! Or maybe you’ll fail this time and THAT will lead to new events. Groups are also a great way to sneak in on those events that are a little high for you.

Go find waypoints and points of interest. Omnom XP. Don’t neglect the ones in towns!

Turnabout's fair play.

Please see the (back of) my fully covered female character, and compare it to the belly baring male in the background. Then join me in being amused.

If you still feel that you’re leveling too slowly, pick up crafting. It’s entirely possible—if you level every single profession—to level from 1 to 80 with crafting. No, I’m not kidding. By the time you are done leveling a profession, you’ll get 10 levels out of it. I wasn’t sure what I thought of this when I read it on the beta forums but…on second thought, it’s pretty awesome. Suddenly the level cap of 80 seems less daunting.

As a side note: don’t forget to rez people. Not only will your fellow players appreciate the help, but rezzing NPCs is often to your benefit. Alright, so maybe the fisher isn’t going to help you much, but the guards sure will. It’s nice to have some bait around to keep the mobs occupied for a bit. ;) There were a few events that I really struggled with unless I got some of the NPC’s up to assist. Of course, if you’re me, you keep accidentally rezzing your pet by accident, and not the other person. Oops.

Last but not least, there’s your personal story! As an RPer, I’m inclined to treat the personal story arc as some bizarre ass daydreams my character is having, but it’s yet another option for gaining XP (and meeting some awesome NPCs.).

If ALL OF THAT still leaves you staring at your zone making sad faces, then GO SOMEWHERE ELSE. Started a Charr and can’t find something else to do in their zone? Go play in the Norn starting zone. Even if you’ve gotten your way to say, level 10, it’ll scale you down appropriately. In fact you probably want to do this anyway, to hit up more skill point challenges. Although I suck at skill point challenges, apparently, and have still not done half of them. >.>

On Events:

I don’t think that GW2 will have the same problem as Rift, where if an event doesn’t get “done” and you come along later, you’re half a dozen kinds of cock-blocked. I attempted an event on my own with my Guardian, failed…and all that happened was that another event opened up, to retrieve the supplies that I couldn’t protect.  All I lost, really, was a few coppers for my repair bill.

All in all, I think it’s an interesting concept.

In General:

ArenaNet seems to be doing a good job so far–some player requests were granted this time around (oh /say, how I missed you), and despite the typical bug fest that is beta, it seemed to run smoother over all. I’m still quite looking forward to this game.


Creating a New RP Character: Tove

Several friends of mine from Earthen Ring are going to be playing Guild Wars 2 together. My “main” character is going to be Tove, a Norn Ranger. I decided to not recycle any of my old character concepts and start from scratch.

Starting from scratch is HARD, guys.

Since I’m new to Guild Wars lore, I’m going to play it safe and make Tove a fairly “typical” Norn. She also has to have leadership traits, as I’m going to taking charge of the RP guild we’ll be forming. The character that’s emerging so far is a boisterous lover of adventure. She’s a storyteller as well as a ranger, so I plan for her making exagerated retellings of their adventures “a thing”.

On the way to work today, I realized that Tove–as I’ve been playing her in forum RP–reminds me of someone.

Well. An archtype is an archtype, I suppose. VIKING, HO.

…also I stopped to stare at the picture and lost my train of thought. I’d bone ALL of the Avengers, guys. All of them. I…okay, I need to find where my ideas went. Hold on. Okay. Let’s move on. As long as I don’t glance up at the photo, I’m fine.

There’s nothing wrong with playing around with archtypes!  I love archtypes! The trick is to give them depth, and perhaps a twist. In this case, Tove’s storytelling provides a unique addition, as does…her family!

Tove is often seen in the company of her younger brother, a surprisingly slight Norn–he is, in fact, a good bit shorter than his sister, and better known for his wits than his strength. Together they’ve embraced the Wolfish ideal of teamwork and strength in numbers–nice groundwork for a guild leader.  I still have to work out some details of the brother/sister relationship with my friend, but I see a lot of good-natured teasing in Tove’s future. I’m really excited about having someone else play a family memeber–it’s an idea I’ve often wanted to persue, but I never had the chance before.

In additon to her brother, there’s also her wolf companion, who will definitely have a personality of his own.

The scary thing about starting a new character is not knowing if they’ll stick–a problem in this case, when I’ll have the guild to deal with. Still, I’m fairly confident that my beer loving, head smashing, jovial ranger will provide plenty of entertainment.

One amusing note: she’s already been referred to as “masculine” by someone else in passing. I almost wish it had been said aloud, because she would have merely clapped her hands to her chest and said “I dare you to show me a man with tits like these!”

I have no good way to end this post, so have another picture.

I'd bone all of the Avengers, but Thor would be first.  Mmm.