Guild Wars 2: Path of Fire, or "Uh, I've been away for a year or more so now what?"


Yeah, I ran into a “InstanceCreate failed” error yesterday, but Anet fixed it in a later patch. It seems it’s mostly stable now.

And the mounts are awesome. I have three unlocked (raptor and skipper have three masteries unlocked, working on XP to unlock the first on skimmer, and I already have the mastery points to unlock it fully to the third level and beyond), and I’m on my way to unlock the fourth.

BTW, since the cat is out of the bag now: there is a fifth, secret mount, that you can only unlock after finishing the storyline and getting a lot of achievements/collections done (which is an achievement in itself). And it’s AWESOMEBALLS.

BTW, PoF is much more solo-friendly than HoT ever was. You can do most of the Hero Challenges and Mastery Points on your own, which was all but impossible in many cases in HoT.

And the mounts and mount abilities give PoF this “metroidvania” feel. You can’t do 100% completion on the first map without all the mounts unlocked, for instance, and so the game encourages you to go back to the previous maps every time you unlock a new “toy”. It’s really fun, but due to how the account-wide unlock system works, it’s only really relevant the first time you play through it. Anyway, I’m enjoying that quite a bit.


Hey you know what’s cool? Those level 80 account boosts they give you for buying an expansion. I received one when HoT came out but never played with it because I had 3 level 80s and was only really playing 2 of them. But I was bored today.

So anyway! You get to try out the level 80 character before committing. How cool is that? When you use the boost it bumps you to level 80, teleports you to the Silverwastes and gives you a full set of exotic gear and a default build to play around with. You can spend as much time as you’d like in SW but if you decide to leave you’ll have to decide if you really want to use the boost or go back to your old level and gear. There’s an NPC who explains all of this for you.

During the trial period you’re in a normal SW map (not a special one for boosted trial periods) and you can change your skill build however you like. You will not gain XP or be able to use either of your class’s specializations (even if you own the xpacs). And there’s a vendor who will give you exotics of other weapon types your class uses for messing around with.

One other nice thing about the boost: it comes with a bag of goodies to jump start your character, including the full set of level 80 exotics, four 15 slot bags and some dyes. Shamefully the bags were better than four of the bags my main has so I sent them over to her and gave my new Guardian her old bags. I might have to use my second boost just for another round of free bags. That’s like 6g worth of bags per boost! And no, you can’t sell them because they’re account bound. But still!


One concern I have with the boost is trying to get the hero points for the first elite spec back in HoT lands.


No need to worry there. A lot of the hero point fights in HoT have been nerfed quite a bit. Most are soloable. Regardless, I’ve spent most of my play time for the last two days in the HoT zones and they’re still active enough. It’s not hard to find maps running the metas and I saw quite a few advertisements for hp trains.


I should look for HoT HP trains for my other characters, because while there are quite a few HPs in PoF, there are fewer compared to HoT (though they are all soloable as far as I could see, unlike the ones in HoT). HoT has 40 HC in total, PoF has 29 (AFAIK). You need 250 HP for each elite spec.


Ah, that’s good news. Thanks for the reassurance. :)

Yeah, maybe I’ll bring my main back to grab some of the HoT HPs I skipped.


Just remember that most of the combat Hero Challenges in HoT are Champions (and are timed), so they’re generally not soloable. Most can be done with three or even two people though, depending on classes/builds.


Where do you see these? In general chat or something?



Yep. 5


I came pretty close to re-installing this last weekend.

It’s been an age since I played and back when I did I kind of faffed about with each character and never got much beyond the first map or two with each. I don’t have any expansions.

Is it still worth playing the base game? Is there any reason to pick up expansions if I were to re-start? HoT is pretty cheap.


I’ve been playing just the base game. There’s an insane amount of content there.

I look longingly at expansion players with their gliders and mounts, but nothing that’s made me feel like I need to buy the expansions myself (yet).


You can also find it in the LFG tool. Look under “Open World” and then pick the area you want.


What race/class you playing?


Human Engineer. I found out fifty or so levels in that Engineer is a Bad Choice for a first character, but that’s mostly due to the overwhelming number of abilities you have access to. You can equip “kit” abilities that replace your 1-5 abilities with new ones, for example. So if I cycle through several kits, my “rotation” is like twenty abilities long.

The game bounced off me originally because (and I heard this echoed once or twice in the stream chat last night) it often doesn’t feel like there’s a “point” to what you’re doing. But the game offers you a nigh-infinite number of progress bars to fill, whether it’s through map completion or achievements or skill unlocks or whatever. That’s something I’m more able to appreciate now for its own sake.


Best first character choices are probably Guardian or Ranger. Guardian is a really powerful class with quite a few options, easy to learn but hard to master. Ranger is not nearly as powerful, but it is arguably the easier class to play (though it can get a bit boring to play, until you get enough options to experiment with).

Hardest classes to play are probably Engineer, Elementalist, and Mesmer. Engineer is perhaps the most versatile class of them all, but it’s pretty hard to master with all the rotations. It doesn’t help that it’s often a glass cannon. Engineer has tons of options and using kits can be overwhelming, and it’s usually squishier than you’d expect. Mesmer is a fantastic class, and some builds are actually easier to play than even the ranger (while still being fairly powerful), but getting there is the trick.


I want to play that Mesmer build. Although, I think it’s funny that the guy keeps calling it a “great beginner build” that requires you to get to level 80 and gear accordingly. Could I level with that, or something approximating it closely enough?

The same guy had a video on the sidebar talking about the Holosmith, the new Engineer spec in Path of Fire. I watched a little bit of it, and holy crap it looks like fun.


The best newbie character class is Ranger. No doubt about it. You can send your pet to engage the enemy and stand back with a bow to kill the baddies. Many of the powers are very simple to use, and there are a few movement powers to help you run away if things get too tough.


That Mesmer power build is for raiding, or at least for long fights. Not sure it would be that great to run around the world with – though it does look pretty simple for getting used to the game.

If you want leveling ideas, look up leveling builds. I used Greatsword to level my mesmer. It was pretty simple and looks awesome.


If you buy any of the expansions you get a “level to 80” consumable. Also, “level up” tomes are part of daily rewards, and level up consumables are also part of birthday gifts, so it’s fairly easy to level to 80 nowadays. Getting proper lvl 80 equipment is a different story. ;)

Yeah, I want to try the Holosmith myself. It’s the next PoF elite spec I’ll unlock; I already unlocked Mirage and I’m 7 HP away from fully unlocking the Firebrand.

And the guy who made the video I posted - Wooden Potatoes - is one of the "sensei"s in Guild Wars 2. He has posted a lot of great content on the game, and most of it is also fun to watch. He’s really good.


That build can be adapted pretty well to work with shattering for bursts, and to rely on phantasms for bigger, harder targets. I’d say it’s pretty viable, even more if you make a few changes to include Chronomancer wells and the such.

I’ll post my current build later, in case it helps. ;)