As I mentioned, the Gs have departed for shores distant and forn whilst I’ve stayed behind in Tyria, but I can honestly say I’m having a blast. Now don’t think I’m not missing my Guildies because I am, but chatting to them over Discord regardless of what game they are in sort of negates that. No, the reason I’m having a blast is the Spring 2016 Update patch that landed on Tuesday 19th April – a patch so big the changelog reached over 17,000 words!
So what about the update has so revitalised my game experience bearing in mind I had wandered off to Tamriel shortly beforehand? Well it’s hard to point at one thing really as the patch touched on so much and the majority of it I have yet to play. Still, let me try to express what I like about what I have had the chance to experience:
- Dailies now pay you 2 gold pieces. This is HUGE! Look, I’ve always logged in to get the dailies but I usually stopped at two out of the three because the third was just awkward to get (a world boss when I was at work or bed, or a fractal I was too low powered to join, for example) but now they have expanded the range to include simple jumping puzzles and mini-dungeons I’ve been grabbing at least three dailies from the list a day. They all give more rewards and then slap 2 gold coins on top too! With both accounts I’m about 20gp richer now for just doing more or less the same things I was doing before the patch! 20 gold!
- HoT Maps and rewards. Christ on a pogostick the re-vamp of HoT maps is good. I can get around far easier now as way points remain open more often and mobs are easier to handle. Not only that but the reward chests come in all the time and they contain a lot more ‘keys’ for opening the local chests. For someone who ran out of crowbars months ago and has only ever had three chak acid pouches this is great news. I’ve been getting more leather simply by wandering about, getting rewards, and salvaging a shit ton of loot.
- The shared slot & 80 boost. Now this was clever… really clever. I used my 80 right away to blitz a toon up to 80 mainly so I could try out the shared slot and I rather think I’m addicted. OK, at £8 each there’s no way I’m going to go mad and buy more but if they appear on sale I could be tempted to get at least one more. I have my silver salvaging tool in mine and it’s helping net more leather from all the bags I’m getting.
As for the things I’ve not yet plays I’m rather excited to try out:
- Relaunched dungeons. Finally the devs have reversed their previous mothballing of dungeons and now these fun places reward you more than ever before. Take that Mr Smith! Not only that but they have made it easier to get tokens so getting the armour rewards (no thanks – fucking spiky horrors) will be less grindy. I’m really looking forward to finally running all of these with the Guildies.
- Revamped Fractals. Balance passes, new mechanics, new rewards. What is to say except “Brilliant, now please add some new ones too ;)”. I can’t wait to run these with the Gs.
- First round of fixes for World vs World. I’d only started getting into WvW with +Ian Jefferies and was really enjoying it. From what I have read and heard the patch goes some of the way to making WvW more fun for more people and seems to indicate the correct trajectory for future improvements. I have to say that I’m looking forward to exploring WvW even more than I was before – not something I ever thought I would have said about PvP
All these and a hell of a lot more are positive changes to the game but if I’m being honest I think the bottom line for me has been the improvements to the dailies. Partly this has been because of the bonus reward of 2 gold (I’m an honorary Skritt so I like hoarding the shinies) but mainly it’s because of the renewed sense of exploration. So far the jumping puzzles and mini-dungeons have largely been ones I’ve never visited so I’m making moolah, uncovering exciting finds, moving closer to world completion, and accruing achievement points! It’s like a giant, oiled machine for fun and rewards – well done Arenanet, well done 😀