Tamriel unhindered.

It’s been a while since I picked up the proverbial pen and wrote something about the games I’m playing. Well, it’s not that I haven’t been playing, on the contrary, I’ve been playing quite a few. Switching between single player RPGs to MMOs. I have played and still have to finish The Wither 3 and Fallout 4, the ongoing saga of Star Wars: The Old Republic and now back to the Elder Scrolls Online: Tamriel Unlimited. What can I say, I love them all. I want to play them all. The only one I have managed to complete is Dragon Age: Inquisition – but I’m not complaining….it’s like having books, the more I have the happier I feel. Weird!

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I jumped back into ESOTU because a friend and fellow blogger, De la Burro mentioned it in one of his posts. I had previously been a beta play and at the time I had come from playing Skyrim – and it was a bad move. Skyrim was still chugging along through my system and it just clashed with ESOTU. I found it frustrating and I couldn’t immerse myself in the world of Tamriel with so many players running around. They were invading my world of intense dungeon crawling, not to mention the hidden chests that I couldn’t open. My lockpicks kept on breaking, time was running out! That’s it! Enough! I threw down the gauntlet!

Well, a couple of weeks ago I went back and it felt so different – no comparing with Skyrim any more and those players running around in my Tamriel – no problem! I am loving it. For some unaccountable reason I can pick locks now without breaking a pick. How did that happen! My character feels so much better second time around, even the crafting feels different and am earning quite a bit of shinies doing crafting writs. I don’t know if it’s down to the changes to the game or me and the way I’m playing it. Whatever the reason, it’s working.

It is such a beautiful game and I love the day/night cycle and the dynamic weather. Exploring and coming upon a unmarked quest or hidden treasure is the ultimate for me and now with The Thieves Guild DLC I’m becoming quite rich! Suddenly my Bosmer (wood elf) is quite the thief! Combat is fun, switching from bow to dual daggers on the fly comes in very handy when those pesky bandits get too close. Though I do have to remember to dodge and roll AND I finally got my sweet ride – a cute piebald destrier. There is nothing like it! Cantering through the spectacular landscape of Tamriel – let’s go for the full immersion!

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Trusty friend.

…..and I have to admit searching for crafting nodes is alot of fun (can’t believe I’m actually writing that), picking flowers and looking for mushrooms is the bomb – then running off to create my alchemical concoctions is quite exciting. Now with the Dark Brotherhood DLC coming out May 31st I’ll be able to create posions. So now my Bosmer will not only be a thief, but how about dual wielding assassin! Yep, we’re going to rock this!

I have no idea how all this happened. I never thought I’d be back in Tamriel, but once you’re hooked to the elder scrolls lore, you’ll always be hooked and you’ll always end up reading every book you find……now all I need now is a library to put them in!

Screenshot_20160428_165239

 

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Back into the Fray!

Eventually it had to happen, though sooner than I thought. Tyria hasn’t changed, but the game machines – it’s almost like playing a new game and that in itself was way beyond fun! Wanting to relive that first moment is always a gamers dream and playing GW2 after such a long hiatus (I’m sure it’s been over a year now) was just that – I was playing a new game.

All it takes is some flowers!

All it takes is some flowers!

So many features have changed. Not only have the skills and traits been reorganized, but the Hero panel has been reshuffled with costumes, dyes, and miniature added to the mix. The bank has an extra icon, one that looks like a wardrobe containing all the armour/weapon skins you’ve unlocked and, you know what, I quite like them. The process of hitting a new level has also changed. When you level up you receive rewards, but you are also told what rewards to expect from future levels and that, I think is quite neat – knowing what to expect. Heart quests are completed out in the field which I think is good, less running back and forth to return the quests which means more time spent exploring. New icons have been added to the mini-map. You see a little flashing icon if you’re close to an undiscovered area, namely those that don’t show up on the map and icons of chests when you’re close to hidden treasure, like the chest at the end of a jumping puzzle. Jumping puzzles!! Well, those have remained the same – frustrating as ever. I always stop breathing when I do those, letting out a little yelp after having made a precariously terrifying leap to a ledge which seems miles away. Talk about stress levels reaching a high! I noticed there was also another icon depicting a little man doing a roll. You go to the spot and you learn how to dodge. I guess that’s probably something you’ll only find in a starting area and I’m still in Caledon Forest. I created a Sylvari Ranger. Eventually I’ll go back to my main, Selir (Norn Ranger) and get her all sorted, but for now I’m hitting a new learning curve and I quite like it.

The Grand Plaza

The Grand Plaza

Tyria is still as beautiful as ever and since I’ve upgraded from a series 9 graphics card to a GTX 770 and a new 27” HD monitor the world is a tremendously colourful place and I love having beautiful graphics. Lion’s Arch is way beyond amazing! I ran around like a girl in a gadget store wanting to buy every technological marvel. The beautiful city is the same size as it was, but it feels so huge. I lost my way quite a few times. The Grand Plaza is crazy-huge and the Mystic Forge – magical. I jumped in and changed into a sparkly alien-like creature. Now that would be a neat costume to wear!

Magical sparkly alien

Magical sparkly alien

So many beautiful buildings and remnants of the battle Lion’s Arch went through. So much history. So much lore. I guess that’s why I loved GW in the first place. I was worried that the majestic lion had disappeared. I mean you can’t have Lion’s Arch without a lion, but I found him, still majestic but not as golden, standing guard over the Fractals gateway and all the other gateways. I was happy.

New Lion!

New Lion!

……and GW2 hasn’t backed down on the unexpected either. So there I was with my pet Tigger, wondering the streets of Lion’s Arch and I come across a Norn and a dog called Tommy’s Dog. I walked up close and the “Charm” indicator comes up on my UI and I say “Oooh a new pet” and I charm him……and the Norn begins to cry…..and I realize what I did and I feel so bad. I unintentionally took his pet and I really felt bad. I mean how often do you get that in a game? – you end up feeling bad for an NPC. So, anyway, as you do in GW2 you wait around to see what’s going to happen next. Sure enough another dog comes along, falls in love with Tommy and becomes his pet and Tommy laughs about it, happy that he’s not alone any more. GW2 never disappoints!

Don't cry Tommy, doggy's back!

Don’t cry Tommy, doggy’s back!

…..and as GW2 never disappoints neither do the players who run around in Tyria. Thanks to an amazing blogger and friend, HeadBurro Antfarm, I joined his guild and met some really nice players…..and he was right! When you adventure in Tyria with a group of people it is a whole new experience and a fun one at that – jumping puzzles especially! I think I’m going to be spending more time than I had anticipated. Tyria is feeling like home again.

……and I might finally get to kill Zhaitan!

The adventure begins!

The adventure begins!

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Games, books and summer shades.

Summertime and the living is easy,” the words ring through my mind as I sip my chilled Chardonnay. The best time of year, well, one of them, as I greatly appreciate mulled wind and mince pies too.

Well, what does one do during the long, lazy summer holidays? Well, one can obviously swim, sunbathe and end up sporting a gorgeous tan, naturally, after having administered the highest sun protecting lotion on the market and then forgetting to reapply the product on venturing back up the beach.  One can also indulge in afternoon siestas, the heat acting like a natural tranquiliser, unless there’s an air conditioner in the room, but that would spoil the romantic image of a light breeze creeping through the partially opened balcony doors causing the white lace curtains to gently sway apart.  Then, of course, there’s those summer evening greatly enjoyed by many. I enjoy mine sitting by the sea indulging my taste buds on a typical Mediterranean platter of freshly baked bread, olive oil and tomatoes, not forgetting my wine. Perfection.

       Summer indulgence!

Summer indulgence!

Or one can couple all the above with a good book or eBook.  I prefer the traditional age-old-page-turning, musty smell of a good book, but then again an eBook is a welcome addition to any handbag. So let’s choose both.

There are those who might take up archery or cross stitch. I love archery, always wanted to be a “Legolas”, standing strong with bow in hand, hunting orcs……..and cross stitch is a favourite of mine. I actually have a number of designs to my name. Think I’ll pat myself on the back for that one. Very proud. Yes, I am.

Then there’s gaming.  I would call that my secret love. I don’t really talk about it to anybody. My friends wouldn’t really care and they’d probably think it stupid anyway. A grown woman playing games. Really! Come on, are you serious! Shouldn’t I be doing something more productive like baking – no, that would make the kitchen too hot and it’s summer, hot enough as it is – no thank you.  May be cleaning the house, washing the floor, dusting the furniture. Done that.  Writing a story. In progress……Now it’s just time to relax. It’s game time. It’s time to unbutton the cloak of reality and slip into something more virtual……and there is an entire wardrobe I can slip into; Dragonborn, rogue- archery-Inquisitor, stealth assassin, wasteland explorer, hunter of witches and ghouls and that’s just selecting a few.  I could wear all, but for the sake of this venture I’ll wear my favourite two; Dragonborn – Skyrim and Inquisitor – Dragon Age. Dragon in the name, therefore they equate to something awesome.

There is nothing quite like being the hero of a realm, the one to bring peace, to heal the wounds of the people and give them shelter from the malevolent beings who are hell-bent on destroying their world.  Striding into a captured keep and being hailed; “Welcome Inquisitor”, “You are the Dragonborn.”  Now that deserves a toast.

Where there be dragons, there be Dragonborn!

Where there be dragons, there be Dragonborn!

Just like books, games transport you to other worldly dimensions where the mundane becomes relevant.  Through books I see worlds in my mind’s eye, whereas games translate those same worlds into graphic images.  You can lose yourself in both, become that person you would have liked to become, may be, in real life if only it were possible.  I consider bother genres art forms, both involve a degree of creativity and imagination, both have the capability of transforming the creative spirit into something tangible.  The difference between the game and the book though, is through one you become the protagonist while through the other you are the observer.  In Skyrim I become the Dragonborn. The hero who speaks in the dragon tongue, who uses this newfound strength to defeat Alduin, the devourer of worlds (Alduin being a big, black, mean dragon).  In Dragon Age: Inquisition I become the Inquisitor branded with the key to seal rifts into the Fade, the one who ultimately destroys the creator of the Breach – Corypheus (a very unpleasant guy) and his Red Templars.  Oh the glory and satisfaction, I being the one to heal the world.  Something, I guess, some of us might aspire to.  Heal the world of all rifts and make it a better place.

Inquisitor in command!

Inquisitor in command!

Books, on the other hand, are windows on the past. They mirror the present, they are prisms reflecting the life to come.  Without them we float on stormy seas.  Books are boxes containing priceless artefacts and just like a magic carpet they transport us to unknown lands. We learn to fly among the planets, recognizing the beauty lying on the pages of black print…….and you can become so wrapped up in the story, so emotionally involved with the characters that reality just seems to dwindle away.  I remember the first time I read The Lord of the Rings.  I was still in 6th Form studying for my A Levels and I had nothing else to do during my summer holidays except read.  There I was sitting on the roof under a canopy when Frodo said, “Get off the road” and I held my breath. I literally felt I wasn’t breathing as the Nazgul leaned in to where the hobbits were hiding. I felt so scared. It was so cool! Come on! It’s like watching a movie in your head, suffice to say I felt the same thing at the same point in the actual movie. The printed word bridges the gap between the thoughts and the paper. They paint pictures in a multitude of colours. Words are ultimately the offspring of thoughts and as Lord Byron once said “A drop of ink may make a million think.”

Summer is definitely a good time. Sit back, chillax and enjoy the summer glow.  Well, that’s what I’m going to be doing.

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The Single-Player Bandwagon

Logging in after such a long period is quite refreshing. It’s taken me quite a while to pick up the pen (metaphorically) and begin writing again. Though, come to think of it “picking up the pen” is not really a metaphor to me as that is what I actually do – first pen and paper, then keyboard. I’m quite a traditionalist in today’s age of tablets and smartphones. There’s something about picking up a pen and jotting down stuff that seems to stimulate those grey cells and what are those grey cells thinking of at the moment – the games I played since I last blogged anything down.

I’ve come to the conclusion that I don’t really want to play MMOs any more with the exception of Star Wars: The Old Republic. In actual fact, I’ve always been a solo player. Throughout my MMO gaming life-span I’ve never really played with anybody. I guess I’m not much of a talker when I’m playing games. I’m not really interested in talking in games at all. I just want to lose myself in the world I’m in, be concerned with the fate of the characters. I don’t want to grind and read endless chat of things going up for sale (a common issue with Elder Scrolls Online). Some may say, “but you can immerse yourself in MMOs”, may be……sometimes…….well not really with people running in the same space as you are. I tried doing that in Elder Scrolls Online, but it just didn’t work, which is a shame considering the lore. However, the MMO I will always keep returning to – my go-to MMO as it where – is SWTOR. I just love that universe. I love lightsabers……and the force…..and who wouldn’t want to be a lightning-storm-wielding Sith Lord.

Lord Vel'era.

Lord Vel’era. “Peace is a lie, there is only passion”

There are many gamers who say the game is a flop, but I honestly don’t care. I don’t care about endgame, I don’t care about PvP (payer vs player). I care about the story and the characters. I suppose this is one factor that drove me away from MMOs into the loving arms of single player RPGs (role playing games).

So what have I been playing? Well, my first rule of thumb, if it has dragons then it’s awesome! That’s why I found myself playing Skyrim. I got into it in 2013, 2 years after its first release. I had forgotten all about it’s amazing launch trailer and the stunning soundtrack, but luckily it came up in my YouTube list of things to watch, coupled that with YouTuber Gopher’s Let’s Plays and I was well and truly hooked. I got the MMO feel without having to play an MMO. Character creation, open world, crafting, story, combat, no grind and no chat, plus my own housing and horse which didn’t cost an arm and a leg. As I bought the Legendary edition of the game I got all the DLCs (downloadable content), and transforming into a werewolf or vampire and being a Dragonborn was just the bomb. Obviously I ended up buying the enormous game guide, so I was set……534 hours into the game and I haven’t finished it yet!

Then one day my brother sends me a text message that there was a game up for sale on Steam that I might actually enjoy. I laughed when he texted me the name, Dragon Age: Origins. No way! Come on! I fell in love! I fell in love with the story, the characters……..I fell in love with Alistair!

Alistair, just being a Grey Warden

Alistair, just being a Grey Warden

Though my character hasn’t romanced him yet. I guess I’ll have to go back and play again! Naturally, I read up on it as I did with the Elder Scrolls and obviously I had to get the second installment and Dragon Age: Inquisiton was a no brainer. My word, what a game and playing it on a new machine running a GTX 770 was spectacular. Keep in mind so far I had been playing all games on a GT 9600 so you can picture the scene as I dived into Inquisition. So beautiful! So beyond anything I had seen before. Metal objects shone in the sunlight, Godrays filtered through the trees and the story…….OMG.

Look up. Perfect!

Look up. Perfect!

There was one particular scene (the characters’ journey to Skyhold)  which just blew me out of the water and had me shed a tear or two. It was like being in a movie and I got so involved with what was going on, not to mention the characters …….oh Cullen, my love!

A hero in arms!

A hero in arms!

I’m on my 2nd playthrough. I still have to play The Jaws of Hakkon, the first DLC. I’m a slow player and anyway in the meantime I jumped into Mass Effect. I came late to the franchise.

Oh my! So many games to catch up with; Fallout: New Vegas, The Witcher franchise, Dishonored. I have quite the list. I’m not going to run out of games to play anytime soon!

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Armour, swords and tear jerkers!

So apart from the fact that I’ve been running out of tissues this past week, I’ve been enjoying my walkabout through Tyria and there have been some emotional moments.

I haven’t forgotten Selir, I mean she is my main character after all – the leader of my girls, poor thing holed up in Orr and she’s been having a tough time. Throughout Tyria exploration has been fabulous. Every little cave I spot I want to see where it leads too, but in Orr I want to get the hell out of there. I’m sure exploring the ruins of Orr would have been fascinating, but not when the undead keep popping out from every nook and cranny! Now because heart quests are non-existent in Orr I’m following my personal story and the problem is soloing in Orr is difficult. Most of the time Waypoints are contested so opening the map to get to my story point is taking me forever. Sometimes I find that I miss my heroes from GW1. Orr is bearable when there are other players around, but otherwise I would have loved to have my heroes. My pet isn’t enough! Those undead take forever to die again. I never liked zombies and now I hate them with a passion – after all that’s what they are, right? I mean otherwise I might end up calling them ‘dracovamps’ – dead people turned into undead by the kiss of a dragon! Clever!

Selir, leader of the pack!

Selir, leader of the pack!

Anyway enough of that. I think you get the picture. I’ll move on to something more interesting.

Alistine, red and bronze. Gorgeous!

Alistine, red and bronze. Gorgeous!

Switching to my guardian, quite a gorgeous gal in her antique bronze coloured armour and hefting a Lionguard greatsword. So there I am following the story line and Alistine is close to discovering the whereabouts of her parents. Slashing through bloated spiders as they descend from the roof of a cave, Alistine finds two headstones. I don’t know, may be because I had the flu or I’m becoming soft the older I get, but I got all emotional on discovering they were the tombstones belonging to her parents and that Alistine’s name was mentioned in the epitaph. I guess being a gemini doesn’t help much……and the tear jerkers don’t stop there.

Let's take a moment!

Let’s take a moment!

Decided to spend some karma!

Decided to spend some karma!

Alistine hefted her greatsword and gazed around noticing this odd-looking area, a brown patch of valley surrounded by pillars of brown rock. A glowing sphere hovers down in the center – a skill point which I got quite easily enough, but what caught my attention the most were the bodies of dead dolyak. Naturally, I immediately went on guard, scouting the area. Heaven knows what creature was lurking in the shadows waiting to feed.  So I waited…..and a lone dolyak walks down into the valley. I drew my sword. I wait. The dolyak lies down…..and dies….and the spirit of the dolyak rises from the remains. Oh hell! This was their grave yard. A place where the dolyak come to die and I found that so sad. I actually sat there staring at the screen following the ghostly apparition. I didn’t even touch my coffee…..and that’s saying a lot!

Dolyaks resting ground!

Dolyaks resting ground!

……..and Alistine sheathes her sword and sits on a rock. There’s nothing quite like seeing a pack of rock dogs saunter by!

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Of blooming flowers and growing vines!

Small mama kills big mama!

Small mama tickles big mama!

One may wonder what one has been doing through this lengthy silence…….well, as every decent Tyrian would do……..clobber centaurs and defeat crazed sharks! Not only that, but I’ve been levelling my guardian – got her to level 22 – and made an asura mesmer. Yes, yes, I am an altaholic! I’ll probably be making a sylvari ranger soon. Another, you might ask! Well, yeah! I love rangers, always have. When I played LOTRO I had a ranger there as well. Influenced from Lord of the Rings? Probably. Though I did fall for Aragorn more than Legolas, but, hey, what’s a girl to do…….in GW2 I get to do both, aim with an arrow and wield a greatsword! The best of both weapon-wielding worlds!

The Necromancer, a stylish chick!

The Necromancer, a stylish chick!

The guardian got a new hair cut!

The guardian got a new hair cut!

Being home sick with the flu I’m spending quite a bit of time in Tyria and the beauty of the land never ceases to amaze me. I had to leave Orr for a while. It can get so heavy there and I’m sure I’ve told you already I HATE the undead. So I relieved Selir from the dreariness and took her exploring and came across a really cute, beautiful, neat – call it what you will – event. I met an Arboreal Spirit that wanted to get back to its husk, but couldn’t because the Hylek were being, as usual, their annoying snobbish selves. So in I charged with my trusted scorpion pet and clobbered and whacked the entire group of hylek…….and saved the day! The spirit thanked me and retreated into its freed husk and……wow, oh wow…..the husk suddenly sprouted vines and the flowers bloomed right in front of my eyes! I love it when GW2 does that! It literally changes right in front of you. I’ve never been in a game that did that before. It shows you how much of a difference you actually make, that you do make a change. Your feats of valour do influence everything around you.

Peace is restored!

Peace is restored!

I must admit this is one game I never tire of coming back to and the longer I play the longer I want to stay……well as long as real life lets me…..I intend to finally kick those undead once and for all…..at least with Selir, I’ll think about the others when they get there! /sighs.

Looks cute, but whacks a punch!

Looks cute, but whacks a punch!

 

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Undead and carpal tunnel!

So my main character has hit level 80 and I have been venturing forth into the desolation of Malchor’s Leap, and let me tell you, it’s bleak there. Undead everywhere. You’re in constant combat not only with undead nobles, farmers and pirates, but undead chickens that peck at your ankles like there is no tomorrow! Well, I expect it’s bound to be an unsavory place being a level 80 area and Zhaitan‘s nesting ground. I have to admit it’s tiring. So I’ve discovered the best way to relieve the tiredness and carpal tunnel is to work on my alts! Switching back and forth from Orr to Kessex Hills to Metrica Province is just the ticket and buckets of fun!  Sometimes I forget that poor Selir is stuck in desolation as I wonder passed the rolling green pastures of Tyria. I even went and bought myself a new character slot in the January sales.  I’ve been testing out a mesmer, decided to make her from the human race, but might probably change her to asura. Playing with my asura elementalist I forgot just how cute and fun they are…..and they run so fast! You definitely need to take a break from the undead!

The desolation of Malchor's Leap

The desolation of Malchor’s Leap

Crafting has been enjoyable too and I’d forgotten that the chef could craft dye, so that was a pleasant surprise. Naturally, I bought myself some extra bank space……items begin to build up when you play alts! I mean the alts craft elements for each other……being such good friends! 🙂

Dress down for a dive and take a spin around town!

Dress down for a dive and take a spin around town!

Something else that I’ve got into is fashion. I’ve never been much of a fashionista in games. I wasn’t one to bother much in Guild Wars. I was more concerned with running around mowing down mean monsters really, but here in Guild Wars 2 I really enjoy seeing what new armour I’ve picked up, crafted or what I can get from the Karma Vendors……and I can’t wait to finally get to the exotic and legendary armour. I know that many other players have already got to that stage, but, hey, it’s fun taking things slow…..what’s the rush! As Treebeard would say “Don’t be hasty!”  Unfortunately, I missed the fun Wizard’s Hat from the Black Lion Store – though I’m sure the gods that be have more fun stuffed up their sleeves, this is just the beginning!

Sometimes a change of colour does the trick!

Sometimes a change of colour does the trick!

And who said a hero can't be stylish!

And who said a hero can’t be stylish!

Leaving the Eye of Zhaitan to it’s own devises for a while has done wonders for my heroic spirit. Now the question is which jumping puzzle am I going to look for next!

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The new year and my hero wakes up!

How time flies! The new year and I’m finally back in the game. Having stepped away from GW2 for a while due to real life commitments, the return has been nostalgic and so much fun! I never realized how much I missed my role as the Tyrian hero until Tyria opened up before me again! It was great to listen in to the Guild chat and speak with my guildies again……so much banter and silly fun! I guess sometimes you just realize that you do need fun, not just the fun of going out with friends, but the fun that you can stay home (and without spending a penny), sit back, relax and conquer evil! 🙂

I finally succeeded in taking my main character (Norn Ranger) to level 80, though I still have TONS to do; finish my personal story, complete the world map, dungeons, fractals, level my crafting professions, craft legendary armor and weapons, not to mention play with my other characters……oh dear, the list just goes on!  I’m actually glad it is a long list of ‘work’ left to do……and that is a first! 🙂

Pumpkins make good pie!

Pumpkins make good pie!

Going back to Tyria was filled with nostalgic memories of the first time the doors opened and the heroes poured in, it was as magical now as it was then! Regrettably, I missed both Hallowe’en and Wintersday, though I did pop in a couple of times to see what was going on, but I didn’t stay long enough to complete much. I loved the way ANET changed the settings on both occasions, so atmospheric! They did a fabulous job. I’m hoping to be around for the next bout of activities! 🙂

My favorite time of year!

My favorite time of year!

A fun thing that I noticed was that the ANET team kept their promise of inserting new events………up to you to find out which they are! One I really enjoyed doing, personal satisfaction really, was the quiz in Queensdale regarding Destiny’s Edge. Having read both books (looking forward to the third, Sea of  Sorrows, this coming year) and done alot of research regarding the exploits of the characters and lore of Tyria…….I was asked by a group of children, hiding in their secret cave, questions about the well known heroes of Tyria………and I got them all correct! Woot! 😀 ……….as I stand back taking my hero stand!

Yes, it’s good to be back……….the journey continues!

 

 

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The Adventure Continues!

Ok! So it’s gone passed the one month mark and Guild Wars 2 is still giving me tons of fun and lots to do. I’ve ventured into Tyria uncovering about 45% of the world map; have managed to get to level 70 on my Norn Ranger trying to keep abreast with my story line…..now that has been a blast. At one point along the story line I get to go to Claw Island and feel like a hero. It was so cool, it was ridiculous! I threw myself into the fry, slaughtering the undead and firing powered arrows into the Plaguebringer. Oh, yes! The power is mine! May Tyria breathe a sigh of relief as I mow down all the evil that dwells in those infernal bogs. Blimey how I hate those bogs!

Down with you, villain!

…..anyway, there I was standing triumphant as we, the defenders, revelled in our victory, successfully protecting Claw Island from the vicious onslaught. I was told to speak to the lieutenants of the three orders and was thanked by all of them, but that’s not what got me grinning like a school girl…..wait for it……the members of the three orders actually bowed before me! I mean….OH….MY….GOSH! There I sat clapping with glee, declaring myself, in no mean terms, that I am of noble heart, a heroic persona adventuring in Tyria, protecting the innocent! ……and Gus, my cat, continued licking his paws thoroughly unimpressed. No appreciation, I tell you, none whatsoever!

……and I have decided that I want an undead Orrian Chicken! I was so gobsmacked on being attacked by these pesky creatures that I completely forgot to snap a picture. They are so horribly cute! So there you are trying to dispatch the undead while these annoying chickens attack your ankles. Hilarious actually. Oh and another thing…..those undead Asuras! Bloody hell! They are actually scary. The little buggers remind me of Chucky. I hate Chucky. He gave me horrible nightmares. So I slaughter those undead blighters with gusto! “Take that you evil little pest!

Ah yes! GW2 is full of surprises!

The bat cave in GW2!

A while ago I decided to do a dungeon. Twilight Arbour. I have to be honest I really didn’t enjoy it at all.  It definitely is a money sink and we didn’t even get to finish it. I don’t have a problem with dying and repairing, but come on! It got to a point where it became ridiculous. I know dungeons are supposed to be a challenge and I like that, but when it starts becoming grind-ish and actually tiring it stops being fun. I don’t know whether I’ll do a dungeon again. I actually don’t know if it’s worth the hassle. For a dungeon to be fun I think the group really should know what it’s doing and there should be some semblance of group support. In my case the dungeon run felt very solo even if I was in a group. I was on my Norn Ranger using a short bow, war horn and axe as my secondary set. I tried to take care of the poisonous blossoms, shooting them with my arrows to try and keep the rest of the group safe. I managed it for a while, but the silence in the group just bugged me. Why doesn’t anybody say what they’re going to do, it’s like everybody else has to second guess what the others are doing and it’s so annoying. I thought GW2 was supposed to aid communication, we’re on the same side……this was supposed to be an easy thing. For the first time ever, in my short history of playing MMOs, this is the only time I have experienced silence in the world map chat. Somebody at some point might ask something, but otherwise idle chat has ceased. The chat that comes through is guild chat which is a good thing……there are people around…..phew! Though I guess this is to be expected. There is so much to do and see in GW2 that players don’t seem to have the time to stop and chat any more. Good? Bad? Hmmmm.

This past week I haven’t played much in Tyria due to real life obligations – going back to work after a long holiday things were kind of hectic. Hopefully, now that things have settled I’ll be jumping back on the bandwagon and taking up my role of ravishing heroine!

Selir in all her finery!

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GW2! A week old!

A week ago today, I woke at 4.00am to be in TeamSpeak with my guildies, so that we would be standing by the doors when GW2 launched. So many things have been accomplished during this week. I have reached level 29 (will probably get to level 30 later on today) because I am an intentionally slow player. There have been players in my guild who have already reached level cap – level 80 and there has even been one player (not in my guild) by the name of MisterSLIN who has actually completed the entire world map of GW2. There have been game crashes, guild bugs, the Trading Post isn’t working. There have been hackers you have stolen accounts, people you have exploited known bugs in the game and were banned (Kudos goes to ArenaNet for being strict and sticking to the TOS)……..all in all a very entertaining week!

A girl likes her bling!

I started off in Hoelbrak and have progressed through the Shiverpeak Mountains, with the occasional pop-over-to-Lion’s Arch to throw things in the Mystic Forge. I did jump over to Divinity’s Reach once and explored a bit of Queensdale, but only because I wanted to reach my required level to be able to continue my storyline……and to just visit Divinity’s Reach……I just love that city! I just love wandering around. A bit of storyline, dynamic events, hearts, gathering material for my crafting professions, killing anything in sight…….so relaxed, but the one thing I enjoy the most is coming across things quite unexpected.

……so there I was exploring the Shiverpeaks and I came upon an outpost. I sold some of my junk and just stood around observing (I tend to do a lot of that) when I overheard one of the NPCs saying that they needed to gather wood to build a bridge, but were bothered that the Dredge might stop them, but they still needed the wood. So off they ran towards the forest. Aha, I said, interesting. So I followed them. They reached a wooded area and proceeded to chop the trees, when suddenly the Dredge appeared…….fun……other players just ran up and fought them with me. We killed all the Dredge. The other players left, but I stayed. The woodcutters collected the wood and headed back to the outpost. I followed. When we arrived back they were told to start building the bridge. Interesting, I couldn’t see a bridge, just a very long drop. Ok, I thought, pretending to build something……….but, oh, wrong! Suddenly the bridge materialized in front of my eyes! I mean, come on, these NPCs just built a bridge and now were assembling a caravan to walk across it to another outpost! I mean WOW! This was real. I could cross the bridge now and a few minutes before I was wondering how to get to the other side. ArenaNet weren’t kidding when they said this was a living, breathing world and what you did actually effected the world around you……..if I hadn’t helped the woodcutters the Dredge might have killed them and the bridge wouldn’t have been built! Crazy! Amazing! Fun!

Another thing which has had me in a jitter are those blasted jumping puzzles. Some are pretty straight forward, but some just…….ooooh…….just test more than your patience! Yesterday I decided to do the Sharkmaw Cavern jumping puzzle with a pirate’s hidden treasure at the end of it. Ok! Good! I like treasure! The beginning was pretty ok…..the spirit of the pirate showed you the way. How sweet, helpful, I thought! WRONG! He’s a crafty bugger that pirate! He leads you to this huge cavern (after having climbed and fallen and died oh so many times already!) which is completely in the dark. You can’t even see a fly on the wall it’s so dark!  So while you’re trying to find the jumps without falling, this pirate just keeps on laughing! At one point I wanted to wring his neck! I fell so many times, but then I found a torch, pirate style……pirate says “Hey that’s cheating!” I say to him “Eat my dust!” The lit torch didn’t last long, but I managed to see some ledges here and there……till finally I got to the last one. Oh – thank – the – spirits! I was so ready to give up! But no! Ain’t going to let some measly, transparent pirate defeat me, a Norn! No way! Reached the final, huge flat rock and was faced with three waterfalls. I chose the one that looked most dangerous and I seemed to have picked the right one! Down I fell into a pool to be greeted by that voice again. Ooooh wait till I get my hands on him! Oh! Beautiful cavern with treasure! Nice! Very nice! Then he says I’m going to be stuck there forever with him……..like…….YEAH!……no! Ha! Ha! Found my way out through a hole in the wall not before grabbing the loot. All in all satisfying when you finally get to the end of it, but boy, oh boy, I could have done with a bit of rum!

“Hey, Mr. Pirate! Eat my dust!”

Yes! Guild Wars 2 is a HUGE entertainment park and I’ve only just started my adventure. I’m going to need a truck full of cookies (chocolate chip) to help me on my way. Need LOADS of energy for all that trekking!

……now where did I put the rum!

Pink is so pretty!

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