Here’s some good advice and information about starting out in Tyria (the world of Guild Wars 2):

  • Slow down. Don’t grind levels. Higher levels don’t mean the same here as they do in every other MMO. Arenanet has taken the “end” out of “endgame,” the fun is in the game itself. Enjoy each area as you go through them. Take the time to get all of the waypoints, vistas, and points of interest. If you’re not much of a completionist, that’s cool, but at the very least make sure to get all the waypoints, those are places you can warp to instantly by bringing up the map and clicking on them, they’re pretty useful.
  • Do the tasks in each area. These are marked on the map by the empty gold hearts, when they are completed the heart will be solid gold (yeah baby!) and will give you a good chunk of xp. Tasks are a good way of adding a little variety. Each task has a bar to fill up, and they all offer you multiple ways to fill up the bar to complete the task (kill centaurs, plug holes in a damn, feed cows, etc.).
  • Many of the Dynamic Events you can do will chain into another one. For example, after fighting off bandits trying to bomb water pipes, stick around and you’ll get to defend the broken pipes as the field hands try to repair them.
  • You will automatically scale down (not up though) to the appropriate level for an area you are in. This ensures that you will never be too high to do an event, and can play together with friends who have just started.
  • Don’t worry about other players around you doing the same thing as you are. Unlike other MMOs where other people will take your mobs and slow you down, players here will automatically be helping each other when doing the same thing.
  • Whether you’re a crafter or not, pick up some tools for gathering materials out in the field. It’s a simple way to net some xp, and you can either use the materials for your own crafts, or just sell it off on the trading post. You may be thinking that all these tools and materials will just clog up your inventory, but Arenanet has thought of that, too. Simply go into your inventory and click the little gear at the top right, then select “Deposit all collectibles.” That will put all those crafting materials you just gathered into your bank, which you can access at any bank NPC or any crafting station, across any of your characters (assuming they aren’t soulbound of course).
  • You can access the trading post (auction house) from anywhere in the world. You can both buy and sell right from the menu, but you will have to find an actual trading post NPC to pick up any money earned or items you’ve bought.
  • While not a major gameplay mechanic, you can switch to wearing town clothes at any time by going into your Hero screen and clicking on the little hat and cane symbol above your character. If you take any damage (being attacked, falling off a cliff, etc.) you will automatically switch back to your battle armor.
  • Any gear can be recolored, whenever you want. The dye system is setup so that you have access to a number of basic colors, which you can freely use on any piece of armor you own (town gear too). You can then find new colors out in the world (I’ve found two from the bags of random goodies that some enemies drop, but I’m sure you can also find them on the trade broker and an NPC merchant as well).
  • All of the starter cities connect to any of the other starter cities through Lions Arch. Starter cities each have an Asura Gate (instant transport portal) that will connect to Lions Arch. This means that if you and a friend are different races but want to start off playing together, all it takes is a little searching to find the gate in your home city. The Asura Gates are marked on your map and look like a little purple swirl.
  • The green swirl icons on the map are where to go for the next part of your personal story. The green arrows that show up on your mini map will direct you to there.