In Guild Wars 1, the Ring of Fire was a favored zone. It looked different than other areas due to the enamored aesthetic. Players were surrounded by precious stones that beckoned each time they walked into the town of Ember Light Camp. Once a player had arrived in the Ring of Fire, it was the starting line for end game content. It is yet to be determined whether that will remain true for Guild Wars 2 (GW2). Let’s look at the new Ring of Fire update and what players are experiencing today.
The Ring of Fire is full of lava pits, the Mursaat, and Jade Armor. Pesky enemies, such as the Karka and Pocket Raptors, make a return. The zone is fairly large in size, with multiple traveling options to use while exploring, the newest being scattered nooks that catapult players into the air, taking them to whole other sections of the map. These nooks require a new mastery level to travel easily in the zone – much like the bouncing mushrooms in the Heart of Thorns zones. Otherwise, the most efficient method of travel is the Ley Line Gliding Mastery. It makes traveling to different parts of the map much easier, plus it looks cool. Investing in max level gliding is important for the zone. For the explorers at heart, medals can be found to earn achievement points – similar to the coins scattered around the Silverwastes. Because of the zone’s design, the medals can be challenging to find, but rewarding nonetheless.
The concept of repeatable dailies in GW2 was off-putting to players at first, since it is a similar system World of Warcraft uses in their own game, and takes away from the identity of Guild Wars. Even with these concerns, this new system has done well and isn’t as burdensome as other MMOs. None of the quests are complicated, and don’t take a long to do. Once you complete the daily, the ‘heart’ quest marker will turn into a karma vendor. Each vendor has different items for sale like petrified wood, miniatures, and bags with a chance to gain ascended materials. In order to get map completion, a player has to complete all five available daily quests in one cycle. Afterward, players can repeat them for rewards, miniatures, or weapon skins.
In the Ring of Fire, players are presented with a new puzzle, Chalice of Tears. Not only do players have to climb and glide across a large pit to get to higher areas, but the jumping puzzle resides inside a volcano. Many of the jumps are mechanically challenging, and there are checkpoints along the way. In order to complete this jumping puzzle, the player has to hit all of the checkpoints, so those thinking a reward awaits on the other side of a free teleport will be sorely disappointed.
The new PvP map is called the Eternal Coliseum and it’s rather large. According to ArenaNet Associate Brand Manager Joshua Davis: “It will be similar to Revenge of the Capricorn.” – another PvP map often played in GW2. By looking at screenshots, it seems that players will be doing battle in the courtyard of a castle. Like every PvP map in GW2, there are capture points that need to be acquired in order to win. For more information on the map features, Dulfy has a quick and dirty breakdown for those who are interested in this aspect of the game.
Without spoiling the story, once again players follow Taimi in her escapades and continue to see her grow. When ArenaNet broadcast the Living World Season 3 update, players knew that they would be seeing the Ring of Fire again. By going through the story, Tyria’s latest challenge comes to life. ArenaNet left plenty of room to expand the story and the area, which is great for player retention. The story is worth playing through.
ArenaNet has started releasing smaller portions of content at a time, keeping players interested in the game. MMOs such as GW2 tend to have declining numbers over time because players will eventually experience everything it has to offer. In this case, they’ve managed to captivate their player base by reintroducing a zone that is well known and loved from Guild Wars 1. With the slowly unfolding story line, many are excited for the release of the next section. Until then, here is the trailer for the Ring of Fire.
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Until next time adventurers!