Some way away, underneath a giant pink petaled flower, I came across an NPC stood beside a big lizard. He told me that he could sense an undead attack and suggested we head up the hill to pre-empt it by invading the cave where they dwell. By the time we arrived at the cave after a short trek up the hill we’d amassed over ten other allies who’d joined us en route. The undead didn’t really stand a chance but just as we thought victory was in our grasp a figure appeared who cast some sort of zombify spell on the big lizard who had been fighting with us all along. Our big reptilian ally was now a big reptilian zombie boss; a shambling hunk of rot. It wasn’t long before the thing was dead and the event over, at which point everybody dispersed and I resumed exploring.
While I was carrying out all these activities I noticed that I was slowly acquiring new abilities for my main weapon and my offhand weapon. Your main weapon has three abilities and your offhand weapon has two, these abilities are triggered by pressing 1-5. Each weapon’s abilities also differ depending on which hand they’re in. It only took a few tasks for me to unlock most of the abilities for each weapon but it was a nice way of easing me into using them rather than just dumping everything on me at once, which is odd because that’s kind of what the introduction did.
Now, I stayed around this area for a while, taking in the beautiful sights and sounds of The Grove (which at times reminded me of Hieronymus Bosch’s The Garden of Earthly Delights), and generally not worrying about what I should be doing. When I wandered back to the ‘termite tree’ I saw that more people were laying into it and sure enough the event had occurred again. Later on I noticed that the big lizard was back and more people were heading off up the hill to deal with more undead. This was a theme park, with rides all over the place awaiting passers by to jump on them; NPCs saying and doing the same things over and over again like underpaid stewards. Being an MMOG, I understood that this was kind of how it had to be but it certainly made these tasks I’d stumbled across feel a little less special. It was getting late and perhaps I was getting a bit cranky so I logged out and went to bed.
The following day I spoke to Lewis about these things and he said the Sylvari introduction and starting area was relatively new compared to the other races’ so certain changes were likely to be made before release. He also agreed that for newcomers like myself the action-packed intros might be a bit daunting without any sort of proper tutorial. Anyway, Lewis recommended creating a Charr so he could join me through some of his favourite opening events and areas. With Steerpike conveniently rearing his head on Ventrilo, we set about creating our feline beasts and meeting up. Here’s a picture of us all: