The soundtrack to Heart of Thorns is fantastic. I’ve enjoyed many of Lena Chappelle’s musical themes for quite some time. She also has this rather innocuous habit of “tripping” on Twitter and accidentally shopping or buying delicious coffee. I seem to have inherited this clumsiness as I recently stumbled over a Sylvari motif that I liked well enough to permanently assign it to my Revenant.
This comes as a bit of a surprise due to the fact that my typical aesthetic sensibilities preclude creating anything other than small-framed humans. I’ve tried to remain attached to a couple of Daikini-sized Norn (of the Warrior and Elementalist variety) who ultimately ended up being reborn as their scrawnier counterparts. Quite boring, you might say.
The problem is that I’ve exhausted all of the remotely sensible unique Human looks on my eight characters. There were none left for my Revenant. I blew an Experience Scroll on a short-haired Mordremoth-slayer who was heavy on the eye-liner and light on the appeal. I ended up deleting her shortly after creation.
Well, I’ve rectified things. I happened to find a leafy Sylvari figure that I have fallen in love with and will be playing for the forseeable future. She’s got a white theme, like my Human Guardian, with chameleon tendencies: the color of her hair, some variant with “ice” or “snow” in its name, seems to change based on where in the world she finds herself. Her native Caledon Forest brings out a vibrant pink, the snowy climes of Frostreach in Edge of the Mists inspire an equally frosty hue, and the inorganic smoke-boxes of Divinty’s Reach (Humans call them houses) turn her hair a dispirited shade of dull blue.
Positively charming. It helps that her running and jumping animations are respectable. She’s able to heft a two-handed hammer with ease. Naturally, she’s wearing a snow-cloaked Ancestral Outfit (rare White dye) that seems to match the shade of her skin – if that’s what you call it – which I’ve left at the default. I could be mistaken, but it’s what you get when you don’t select any skin color for Sylvari. I checked and double-checked: none of the skin colors on the creation screen were highlighted. It seems that choosing nothing was the best choice of all for my purposes.
I’ve been doing whatever I want, which in this case means going for an extended stroll in Edge of the Mists and using Ventari’s tablet to heal all of my group members. It seems to be rather effective, particularly in engagements against enemy players. Tablet, go here and do these restorative things while I blast every field in sight with my two-handed hammer skills and my ranged autoattack plinks away at my target. Switch out to staff for mobility and melee heals as needed. Swap over to Jalis for a self-heal and defensive abilities when I’m taking damage. Tier 5 Ram Mastery to throw up Iron Hide on the group (50% damage taken) and start pounding away at doors the second our siege are built.
It helps that WvW ranks now award chests which contain random Hero Point completion tokens, although purists probably still scoff at the use of EotM and WvW in the same context. Even so, I may decide to bench my Revenant and level her passively using Tomes of Knowledge as I have been doing for my other characters. I can’t be bothered to do much more active leveling for its own sake. I have no qualms about “hothousing” my characters in the open world until such time as they need to strike out into parts removed for this world boss or that resource node.
I do all of my completionism-type stuff on my Chronomancer, anyhow. She’s out map-completing Verdant Brink and idly exploring the endless staircases of the Exalted City in Auric Basin. I’m presuming you’ve read the existing blogging literature on Heart of Thorns by the Holy Trinity (Bhagpuss, Jeromai, Ravious). This storyteller has no stories to add. Maybe later. In the meantime, I have randoms to heal and inventories to mismanage. Happy trails.