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Guild Wars 2 Column: The Lost Shores

By David North on November 19, 2012

Citizens!  (Just kidding everyone, please don’t post any threatening comments below.)  I just finished playing The Lost Shores event for Guild Wars 2.  The event was hyped up, and ArenaNet had a lot of expectations to meet after the very successful Halloween Event.  We wanted something even larger and more dangerous this time around.  Did ArenaNet meet our expectations? Well, yes and no.

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The event kicked off with a large battle right in Lion’s Arch, a place players thought would always be a safe haven.  A new type of enemy, known as the Karka, began to invade Lion’s Arch.  Players heard the call of duty and rushed in to try and keep the invaders at bay.  This was a bit tough as these new enemies were very resistant to weapons and magics.  But the will of the players was enough to stop a full invasion of Lion’s Arch.  What a way to kick things off! 

After the battle, things started to slow down.  The Karka were a huge mystery.  We were all wondering where they came from, and why were they attacking Lion’s Arch?  The players were tasked with finding these answers, being sent on an investigation that began to point them towards a group known as the Consortium.  Once players got some leads, things slowed way down.  So much so that it was a screeching halt. 

Remember when the game was first released and a few NPCs and events would bug out?  Well in the first time in a long time I saw it happen again.  The NPCs needed to progress the event were bugged out across the servers. It was a huge bug and it prevented players from progressing further in the quest line.  It was pretty frustrating to get pumped up in the earlier fight, only to have a silly bug prevent you from enjoying the event's story.  The next day ArenaNet did fix the issue and extended the time for players to complete phase one.  But I think we were all expecting a fix to come much sooner. Really the bug shouldn’t have happened at all.

I was really happy to see the event feature a new enemy type.  The Karka were really unique visual look, and actually showed the wear of damage over the course of a fight.  These creatures are pretty large, and seeing that effect on them as you wear them down gives you the sense that you really are winning (when you weren't dying from their highly damaging attacks).  It was rewarding to see chunks of their armor fall off, leaving them vulnerable to your attacks.   The tiny Karka face huggers were also fun as they came at you in large hordes.


Don’t take on the Karka alone!

The event picks things back up with phase two once again pitting players against the Karka yet again, but this time their weapons were able to damage the beasts.  There was hope for victory yet!  Once the Karka were pushed back and on the run, it was time to meet them on their home turf!  Players would set sail for a whole new map, the Southsun Cove, with more dynamic events to take part in.  The general goal for many of these events was to gain a stronger hold on the island.  It was clear the Karka Wouldn’t stop their assault on Lion’s Arch, so they needed to be dealt with. 

The map was a bit small.  I may have had my expectations set a bit too high for this, but I was hoping for a full size map.  Instead, players were brought to a large island in the Sea of Sorrow.  I was really happy with the nice tropical feel for the island's environment.  It had a more unique feel from other parts of the Tyria, so it does make up for the lack of size with beauty and detail. 

The best part of the event is the very last phase.  I really wanted the event to end in a huge boss fight, and that’s exactly what happened!  It all started with players starting to prepare for the fight against the Ancient Karka.  After breaking into the hive and placing explosives everywhere, the Ancient Karka revealed itself.  The nice thing about this fight was it doesn’t just spawn and you fight.  Instead you have to push the Ancient Karka back all the way around the island, fighting it and its fellow Karka in an epic battle.  The event took my group a bit over two hours to complete.   After luring the Ancient one into the hive, you finally fight it out on top of a group of explosives you planted earlier.  When all the red poured out from its health bar, BOOM!  The powerful enemy was sent into a pool of lava, turning it into a crispy corpse.


Burn, baby, burn!

Overall, the Lost Shores was another successful event, and I’m really interested to see what else ArenaNet can come up with and what happens to Southsun Cove now that the event is over. While bugged NPCs did cause people to be alarmed for the rest of the event, things picked up and kept players busy.  Adding in a new map and new enemies sure adds to the fun, a new dungeon is also available for players to try out, as well as the beta version of a new PVP map.  The nice bit of loot at the end for participants was also a nice touch (though many disconnected and missed out on it with ArenaNet offering a solution soon).  If future events are like what I’ve seen over this past weekend, the future for Guild wars 2 is going to be very exciting.  Let's just hope things go more smoothly next time. 


I am beginning to wonder if maybe we misunderstood the Karka. Maybe they just wanted to give us a hug.


Read up on more recent Guild Wars 2 content.

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