Heart of Maguuma
Prior to the actual closed beta test we noticed some changes to tour accounts. We had an added Beta Test Character Slot (shown below) for use during the beta event. We had three 2 hour time slots to play the beta or May 26 20 15. The were 11:30 -1:30, 3:30 – 5:30, and 7:30 – 9:30
I’m sure it will get removed on the following Tuesday update. We can hope that the actual expansion will include a character slot as part of the purchase. It would be consistent with Guild Wars Nightfall & Factions expansions.
Once allowed into the test area we could begin character creation. Then new profession Revenant was available for selection, and while I wanted to save it for the actual release I could not resist, most players chose this option. Believe it or not some chose their favored profession. To each their own 😀
After character creation were were greeted with this video. Explaining “The Call” to all Sylvari peoples. Take note that not all Sylvari obeyed or followed the call and remained as they are now, allies. Though “many” did and turned on us.
After words we were spawned in to Red Base in Silverwastes and had to escort a pack dolyak to Amber Sandfall base. Once there followed the supplies into a doorway north of Amber Sandfall base were we needed to complete a story line event in order to open the portal into Verdant Brinks. After successfully reaching Virdant Brinks we were greeted with this video.
Playing through the story line we were spawned into had us meet up with Laranthir. A choice was placed before us to choose to follow Laranthier or side with Pact soldiers. Each with a different event to complete. Following Laranthier we take a path introducing us to new Mordrem creatures most notably the Mordrem Guard Cavalier who is often found riding atop a Mordrem Guard Mount. In a battle with a champion Mordrem Guard Cavalier and their mount, Rytlock makes his grand entrance in this video.
Afterwords we begin our exploration of the Verdant Brinks and it’s offerings.
I wanted to save the Revenant for the actual release of HoT and intended on playing either an Ele or a Guardian. However the hype and length of time since a new profession was available I could not resist! It was a joy to play and with my pos pc I was pleased with how well the animations and action took place. There were a few areas it took some time before animation appeared and some times not at all. I chalked it up to my pc. It was awesome to see the Forced Engagement work to our advantage and have the enemy turn on themselves. I’m not sure if it was supposed to work on a champion mounted rider but I was AWESOME that it did, if only to have him bucked off. A word on Inspiring Reinforcement , OMG I think everyone had that set to auto attack. There were multiple times our path was literally paved by IR 😀
Day & Night Impressions:
You could definitely tell the difference between day and night, not just from the amount or lack of light but from the numbers of mordrem available to help level your Mastery Track 😉 There are a few who might be mistaken that the beta was the actual number of mordrem we will see. While that might actually be the correct number of mordrem, the time we had did not give us the full view of the onslaught once HoT is released, think Amber Sandfall, Indigo or other base during a defend stage. Or Vinewrath Lane. That is my bet at least. It was clearly enough to cause our forces to falter and not achieve all the defenses before nightfall (LOL Nightfall)!
Mastery System & Adventures Impressions:
I only tried two adventures, the one collecting the supplies and the one collecting the insects. My first two runs through the supplies adventure you had to dodge or speed your way out of the devastating Tendril attacks, failed miserably. I was able to get the bronze on my third attempt and almost to silver. Clearly your Mastery Skills will help diminish the challenge rating a little, on some of the Adventures there were Speed Mushrooms. They were a challenge and fun. The insect collection in the Itzel grounds was hard mainly because I cold not stop jumping off to glide 😀 and it was at times hard to tell where to go next. Mastery System is just as they said, a grind, but it is an account grind and one I will be happy to complete. I’m sure the last few unlocks will take for ever to gain but should be worth it. In the six hours we were given I did earn 2 ¼ unlocks. I could have earned more had I actually been hunting events. So yeah, the grind is real, but not a bad one. You’ll clearly gain Mastery Points faster than you can spend them.
Audio & Map Impressions:
The players character having a voice was great 😀 I knew from information before we would be getting one and had forgotten until playing in the beta and hearing my character. There was that light delay of “hu, wut? Who’s that talking?” I enjoyed the ambient sounds and wish they played more often (could be my settings). Almost reminded me of trodding through the bush. I hope the Jungle includes some rainy areas also. Map layout was nice and confusing, reminded me of Cantha in Factions, and wished there were a few more high long skinny bridges to run over (and jump off, yes). I understand we may not have been given access to the jungle floor, but it would have been sweet to jump off the mordrem vine Mastery Point and glide to the bottom with out auto dying.
Our Good Bys:
Nearing the end (literally like the last minute! 9:29pm PST) of our final 2 hour time frame a group of us rallied at the cliff of Shipwreck Peak Waypoint for one last glide into the nightfall of beta.