Welcome to Steam Guild Wars 2!
Guild Wars 2 is a pretty great game that I’ve played on and off for quite a long time now and despite not progressing that far due to my own snail-pace playstyle, I think I’ve learned a thing or two along the way, especially some stuff that might be helpful to new players. With the new release of the game on Steam and despite how they, oddly, set it up so that you need to play as a new account to do so, there are a lot of new players coming in. Well, at least those players that the community haven’t scared away, anyway.
Sidenote: For real GW2 community, not every new player needs to be coddled and taught how to play the game. There are a lot of players, like myself, who see games as a puzzle to figure out and take pride in doing so without guides or handouts from other players. I have seen players in other games, too, absolutely soured due to an over-helpful community, it’s not just GW2. If you’re not sure, it’s always better to wait for those players to *seek out help themselves*. It’s basic consent, really.
That’s why I’m putting my tips here, in my blog where most players will never see it. However, if you’re one of the lucky ones able to, here are my top twelve basic tips for new and old Guild Wars 2 players. Just little things that I’ve found very helpful, and if they’ve helped me, I hope they help you.
Dodging Negates Damage, Not Just Moves You Out of the Way
In a mechanic that isn’t found in many other games, dodging not only is a way to get out of a big telegraphed attack, but also negates all damage while you do so. So if you can’t get out of the way fast enough, timing it so that you dodge as the hit occurs will still negate the damage and is the best way, if not the key, to defeating many of the game’s bosses. Also, keybinding dodge to a specific key instead of double-tapping (I use Shift) helps make dodging a lot easier.
Right Click Reward Chests to Collect Them Quickly
If you right click on the reward chests that appear in the bottom right corner of the screen after you complete achievements, they’ll automatically place their contents directly into your inventory. If you’ve saved up quite a few of them before opening, like I tend to do, it’s a quick way to claim them all. Not every chest will let you do this, but a great majority will.
Identify Gear Before Salvaging
After playing a while, you’ll notice you’re acquiring stacks of unidentified armor in Fine, Masterwork, and Rare gear. You can salvage or sell the entire stack as is, but if you “use all” or double-click them, gear of that quality or *above* will come out. So, 10 unidentified Masterwork gear could have 1 or 2 Rares hidden in it. Plus, you’ll unlock all the armor skins that come along with all the gear.
Salvage All Fine/Rare and Lower Gear All at Once
If you right-click on a salvage kit the menu will have options to salvage all gear of a certain rarity or lower. So, after identifying all that gear in the above step, you can very quickly dismantle all the gear as well. Of course, if your character’s gear hasn’t reached full 80 Rares and Exotics yet, you should just do a quick double-check to make sure any gear isn’t an upgrade first before salvaging.
Deposit All Crafting Materials Directly Into Your Bank from your Inventory
And after salvaging all that gear, you can deposit all the crafting materials directly into your bank! In the upper right corner of the inventory pane there’s a button that will do just this. Be a bit careful here, too, as some materials used for crafting can also be used to upgrade your gear directly, like precious stones. Maybe periodically check your bank crafting tab. You might be surprised what’s in there.
The PvP Lobby is a Quick Place for Town Services
Say you’re out exploring and run out of salvaging kits and need to hit a vendor or the bank real quick but don’t want to fully teleport back to town, what do you do? Instead of spending coin to teleport, you can just open the PvP window and enter the PvP lobby. There you will find, all within a very short distance of each other: a bank, auction house, and general vendor. The best part is once you’re done, just exit the PvP lobby by using the window again and you’ll appear right back in the same spot on Tyria you left!
Dynamic and Timed Events are a Great Way to Earn XP
While maybe not being the fastest way (which I believe is crafting), dynamic map events and timed events are a great way to earn lots of experience very quickly. I’m not sure if “Champion Trains” are as popular as they used to be, but running dynamic and timed events back to back will reward you with lots of experience AND loot. Good way to level up those mastery tracks.
Browse the Official Wiki by Typing /wiki in the Chat Window
Guild Wars 2 isn’t secretly referred to as “Guild Wiki 2” for no reason. In one of my worst criticisms of the game, there is so much that the game has that is either very poorly explained in game or not explained at all. Instead, the game relies heavily on it’s official wiki, which *is* very helpful. So helpful that to access it you can just type in “/wiki XXX” in the chat window and it will bring up your default web browser right to the wiki entry for whatever you typed in as XXX.
Timed Events Run on a Cycle that Repeats at the Same Time Every Day
To be honest, I’m not sure whether the events cycle every 4 hours or 6 hours completely. However, the way the big bosses cycle their events they will start at the same time every day. So, when I wanted to complete all the Triple Trouble achievements, Triple Trouble starts every night for me at 9 PM and Midnight. It was no trouble to log in at those exact times and run the event. Now I need achievements for Tequatl, which starts at 8 PM or 11 PM. It’s best to figure out what time you normally play and then remember to hit the event during that time. However, I do expect once Daylight Savings Time ends for me that the Guild Wars 2 schedule will shift as well. That is, until time changes are abolished entirely.
If You’re Lost on What To Do Next, Achievements Help
Guild Wars 2 is very much a game about achievement hunting. So much so that when you are at the point of the game where Masteries become important, almost all of them need completing achievements to acquire. To complete all the Heart of Thorns Mastery tracks, for example, you need 144 Mastery Points! Good thing there are 198 of them available! Events like Wintersday, Dragon Bash, or Halloween, too, mostly all rewards will come from completing Event Daily, Yearly, and other Achievements. This combines well with the “/wiki” tip from above, too.
Use Karma to Purchase Locked Armor Skins from Renown Heart Vendors
Karma is a currency gained through completing events and Map Renown Hearts that you will find accumulates rather quickly with seemingly not a lot to spend it on. As of right now I have 1.5 Million karma, for example. After you complete Renown Hearts, a vendor will be available to purchase items for Karma including recipes, armor, and other items. A great use of karma is in filling up your weapon and armor skin collection by way of these vendors. Gotta collect them all.
Complete Maps for Transmutation Charges and Black Lion Chest Keys
Map completion is also very rewarding and a great way to earn Transmutation Charges, used to change the way your character’s armor or weapons look using any skin you’ve found. The ‘Identifying’ tip above helps with acquiring those weapon/armor skins, too. Also, if you’re level 80, there is about a 30% chance you’ll acquire a Black Lion Chest Key from completing maps as well. So, with Transmutation Charges, Black Lion Chest Keys, and map completing needed for Legendary weapons, it’s a good idea to focus on doing so.
Is that all 12? Yeah, I think that’s all of the tips I have for now. If I come up with more later I’ll probably just add them to this post. Anyway, Guild Wars 2 is a great game and I hope you enjoy your time in Tyria!