Today is the release of the final episode of Guild Wars 2 living story season 4, titled War Eternal. While we have had the opportunity to play through a good portion of the story we won’t be talking about that at all in this article. It is one of those stories that is best left for you to play yourself and you should do it as soon as you can because people will be talking about it in game and on social media.
I will be completely honest with you now, I spent 90% of my time in the preview playing with the Skyscale. Yes, I was exploring the new zone which has a lot of great verticality to it and a lot of little nooks and crannies but all the exploring I did was in the context of the Skyscale.
At first working out how to use the Skyscale was a bit of a challenge. There’s not one, but two bars for you to keep an eye on and being able to find a flat surface to recharge on isn’t always easy. Once you have found one they aren’t always easy to land on. Think of when you were first starting out on griffon and you wanted to land on a tiny branch. It takes skill and practice. Attaching yourself to a wall and jumping up it is also something that takes a bit of skill. Even after a couple of hours in the preview I wasn’t totally comfortable yet with walls. Where Skyscale totally sold me though was hovering. You’re basically on a tiny one person living helicopter. Skyscales can stay hovering in place basically forever, assuming nothing gets aggroed and attacks. I can already picture an army of Skyscales floating in the sky waiting for the Shadow Behemoth or Claw of Jormag. It sets an epic picture in your mind.
The attack, which I will admit I didn’t write down the name of is something that will be familiar to anyone who has played against any of the smaller fire breathing dragons in Guild Wars 2. It’s the good ol’ fly in a circle breathing down fire. Why though you decide to jump off while that’s happening…that’s a different matter altogether. Yes, for the game mechanic as ArenaNet has made it you have your attack and you dismount, it makes sense. But thinking about it in terms of reality. Why the hell would you jump off your dragon while he’s flying around burning things? Clearly, the safest place to be is on his back.
One thing that I will admit underwhelmed me a bit in the preview was the new Legendary Greatsword Exordium. It is very shiny and to me immediately screams Mesmer. One of the problems I have with it is how similar it is in style to another weapon skin that already exists in the game, the Immortal Greatsword. Yes, it absolutely is bigger and flashier…but I don’t think it’s worth all the effort and money that a legendary weapon costs. It also doesn’t feel like it That is, of course, just my own personal opinion and you might have a totally different one. I think another part of what made it so underwhelming for me was my total inability to get a good screenshot of it. For that reason the images of Exordium in this article are those that were provided by ArenaNet.
Finally, I do want to talk a little bit about the new zone, which I’m not actually going to name because this article is going out moments after the episode releases and people won’t have had time to discover it yet. As I mentioned previously the zone has a lot of verticality to it and is a lot of fun to go around with your new Skyscale. But, if you don’t have Skyscale unlocked that’s ok. ArenaNet has done a fantastic job of making the zone accessible. All over the place you’ll see updrafts, bouncing mushrooms, Jackal Portals (or as I call them, puppy portals) and Oakheart’s Essence. They’ve made it very easy to get around the zone no matter where you are in your Guild Wars 2 playing experience. The zone also has a lot of different biomes and as a result a wide variety of enemies to take on. Anyone who takes their time going through the zone will be rewarded with little things that are incredibly easy to miss as you’re quickly passing through. ArenaNet also does a fantastic job of having characters from the story out in the open world once again where you can see them deeply involved in their projects, which once again I won’t say what they are, because…spoilers.
That’s pretty much all I have to say about War Eternal that doesn’t stray into spoiler territory. The episode is available to play right now so if you aren’t already patching…what are you even doing?!
But I want to finish this article by saying a big thank you to GuildMag which, after an incredible 9 years as part of the Guild Wars community is sadly saying goodbye today. Through the years many different people have worked on the magazine and website. The Guild Wars community won’t be the same without GuildMag. The good news is that while GuildMag is ending, many of the people on the team currently will be continuing under a new name on a new site. The details of that haven’t been announced yet but it seems that there will be some sort of announcement after the end of Season 4. We’ll be keeping a close eye on social media to get all those details as soon as they’re available. Thank you again GuildMag, we’ll miss you.