“I desired dragons with a profound desire. Of course, I in my timid body did not wish to have them in the neighbourhood . . . .But the world that contained even the imagination of Fáfnir was richer and more beautiful, at whatever the cost of peril.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien
I can’t help but agree with Tolkien. I mean what would our fantasies be without a dragon or two? So I pose the question; Why do we like/love dragons? What’s so fascinating about them? Is it because they’re big and bossy or because they are powerful and wield magical spells? Well, I’ve always wanted to transform myself into one. I can see myself late at night – obviously don’t want anybody to see me, imagine that…..the panic –metamorphosing into this extraordinarily large and magnificent golden dragon with glowing green eyes and soaring all over the country. Take that for a fantasy! Ok, cliché! Do I care? Nope!
What does this have to do with GW2? Let me do a little jig here. Ok, done! Well, if you’re not into the lore you wouldn’t care, would you? Do you have to know the lore to play GW2? Not really, but if you did then you wouldn’t just play it, but you might enjoy it even more! There is no rule which states that players need to know the story to have fun in Tyria, but if they did they would understand the details of what they see around them. That the submerged ruin is old Lion’s Arch or the tower that appears to be floating above Kessex Hills is the Wizard’s Tower……that the beauty of Tyria has come a long way, basically 250 years’ worth of history.
The open world of GW2 is different from other MMORPGs because players are encouraged to work together and not oppose each other. The history of Tyria is so diverse and multi-layered that to see Charr and Humans work together is like seeing oil and water performing a tango in a glass. That these two races come together to try to defeat the great evil that has befallen the world. The Elder Dragons.
The dragon saga begins with Primordus, 1120AE. He was supposed to have woken in 1078AE, but his champion , The Great Destroyer was defeated by The Great Dwarf, so his awakening was delayed until the Asura, thinking that he was just a huge entity of power, tapped into that power and decided to build their Central Transfer Chamber, and this led to their hasty retreat to the surface. Ah the Asura – so it was their fault! Blundering little geniuses!
…..and the saga continues with Jormag. The curse of the Norn! Now he began wiggling his whiskers in 1078AE. He promised power to a Norn warrior, Svanir. The fellow enjoyed that power and became the first champion though he wasn’t really very attractive, half-norn, half-bear and covered in ice – the first of the Icebrood. He was given the name of the Nornbear and GW players get to meet the bugger when they help his sister, Jora to defeat him. Now she was a tough cookie – by killing him she would regain her honour and that of her family and delay the rise of the dragon by 50 years. Not bad! Not bad at all! Unfortunately, Svanir left a legacy, attracting warriors who thought Jormag’s power really cool and they became the Sons of Svanir – who we get to kick around in GW2. An ounce of satisfaction, I must say.
…..but there is no rest for the wicked. Jormag finally emerges in 1165AE, causing the Kodan (intelligent polar-bear like beings)to flee and the Norn to retreat to the south of the Shiverpeak Mountains.
Did I say I like dragons?!
1219AE the world shakes as Zhaitan, the boss of bosses awakens. Now his humble abode lay beneath the sunken city of Orr. So he decided to see the light of day and in so doing caused a huge wave – wonder if it resembled a tsunami! – which destroyed Lion’s Arch and the Battle Isles and being a dragon of his stature he needed followers, so he decided to control the wandering dead of Orr who became his most obedient and ‘loving’ servants. Now who doesn’t enjoy a good love-story! So big boy Zhaitan has decided to take up residence in the ruins of the holy city of Arah, the ancient city of the gods………and who said dragons weren’t snobs!
Sit back, grab a beer. It’s not over yet! Now there’s not much written about the next dragon. The Deep Sea Dragon. All we know is that he can create tentacle creatures from the water. Got to remember that the next time I go snorkelling!
……and last but not least the mean and terrifiying Kralkartorrik. Wow, he’s one mean, bad lizard! He decided to shake the rocks in 1320AE. He rose in the Charr homelands and flew south over Ascalon and settled in the Crystal Desert. Of course, he wouldn’t have been such a bad dragon if he hadn’t caused the Dragonbrand. As he flew over he destroyed everything, from plants to creatures transforming them into crystal monsters. These were considered to be the branded and in the Finale of the last BWE I got to be one of them. I was branded and my ‘job’ was to try and convert as many players as I could. I bow my head meekly here as I snigger to myself……it was fun! I was transformed into this crystalline ‘monster’ – I didn’t look like a monster to me! – and ran around the Ascalon Plains branding others! Ok! So Kralkatorrik can organise one amazing party, dude!
……and that is the saga of the dragons in GW2. Do you still love them? *whispers* I do! The greatest finale of all will be when we all finally get to meet the big lizard himself, Zhaitan. I often wonder what he looks like.
……so put on your armour, grab your weapons and let’s go and hear the dragon roar!