Saturday, December 1, 2012

Howling Voice Guild: Ascalonian Catacombs

 Welcome to Ascalonian Catacombs.

Guild Wars 2 has, at launch, 8 dungeons that players can go through in groups of five. Starting at level 30, each dungeon involves the story behind Destiny's Edge, the guild of signature NPCs from each race, eventually putting aside their quarrels and getting back together to face the threat of the dragons once more. Ascalonian Catacombs is the first of these dungeons, unlocked at level 30.

It is also the dungeon most richly filled with lore and tie-ins to Guild Wars 1.  The dungeon goes through the catacombs of the broken kingdom of Ascalon, fighting a great number of angry ghosts and eventually fighting and putting down the ghost of the last King of Ascalon.


The dungeon itself is immensely and beautifully detailed,with eerie blue and green lighting and a definite sense of a lost and holy place. You run up broken and crumbled stairs, through deteriorating halls and statues of the human gods, through dimly lit corridors full of traps and angry, angry dead people.

Now, this is the third time I've done Ascalonian Catacombs, and the time I've gotten the most caps of the dungeon. All dungeons, after their 'story' run is done, have the option of an 'explorable' mode, with a different set of mobs and, I suspect, a less structured approache.

I want a AscCat exploration time. The detailling in all of the dungeons, and indeed the entire game, is absolutely spectacular, but this one counts as true scenery porn. And in true respect for the scenery, of course, the Howling Voice Guild danced on the dead king's grave.

 You know. Like you do.

 Of course, the very best part of the dungeon was the shiny new hat I got upon completion. The drop hats for each dungeon look the same, with only stat differences appropriate for each leveled dungeon, but I don't care. Got pirate hat. That is all that really matters.

Going in with an engineer was a very different experience from going in with my vaunted elementalist, Rufflebutt the Barbarian,   seen here with her exotic and most ruffly of butts. Engineers themselves are an odd class to play, focusing mostly on creating additions to the battlefield, be they dropped potions, conditions, or turrets, and setting up combos. It didn't help that I kept trying to default to my elementalist's playstyle, which pretty much boils down to "heal everything, burn everything, run from everything, repeat", which was really also the way I played Skyrim, come to think of it.

That said, it was fun, even if engineer's going to take a little more practice to get right in groups.

Tune in next time for a stunning rendition of Caudecus' Unrelenting Shitfest: A musical in the key of "fuck you".

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