Questions Guild Wars 2 Players Had About the HoT Story

ArenaNet has created a big world for us to play in, with vast amounts of lore surrounding it, so finding plotholes and inconsistencies shouldn’t come as a surprise and especially not as a disappointment. There are some head scratchers that can be solved with a single patch, but have ultimately been ignored due to general playerbase indifference—examples include Russl Otterly’s refusal to acknowledge his daughter Clara in Shaemoor Fields and why centaurs are considered automatic enemies everywhere despite dialogue among humans suggesting that they know they’re not evil merely because they’re centaurs. The former is a small mistake, while the latter is a portrayal of how little we understand and care to understand about centaurs, which makes sense.

Then there are slightly larger ones that could have been avoided with more brainstorming. These are the mistakes that we see and think, “Wasn’t there someone in the room that went, ‘Hey, that doesn’t really fit with what we’ve made’?” One that’s in the base game is when you become an Iron Legion charr. Your character is immediately a master weaponsmith, a real skill in the game, but outside of the personal story, he or she is suddenly struggling to refine iron ore. These, though, are also insignificant. With the release of Heart of Thorns and season two of The Living World, weak, plothole-filled story planted the seed of rational frustration from the fans.

 

WARNING: THE FOLLOWING CONTAINS SPOILERS FOR HEART OF THORNS AND SEASON 2 OF LIVING WORLD

 

  1. Rytlock is a revenant?

rytlock

Formerly a warrior, Rytlock returns from the Mists in the beginning of HoT as a revenant. Seeing him wear a blindfold and use magic is surreal. He’s the last character we’d expect to go on a soul-searching journey to connect with the metaphysical world—or whatever the blindfold is for. This change does a few things: it increases the mysticism of the Mists (say that five times fast), makes us realize that the grizzled and experienced Rytlock still has ample potential for change, and advertises the revenant class as a way to progress within the soldier profession. It comes off as forced, however, as players struggle to suspend their disbelief in order to cross into the “can’t-wait-to-see-what-else-this-expansion-has-in-store” threshold.

 

  1. Where is Malyck?

malyck

At the end of a sylvari personal story section in the base game, Malyck vows to build an army out of sylvari born out of his Pale Tree in the Heart of Maguuma, and then bring them back to fight the Elder Dragons. It’s a great, open-ended event that would have been ideally realized in the expansion, but once it came out, there was a recurring theme among forums centered around the lore: where is he? Not only that, where do they mention him, his exploits, or his legacy? There are some terrifying possibilities with this, including Malyck being one of Mordremoth’s guards and we didn’t realize it. Addressing players’ concerns after the expansion release, ArenaNet stated that there was no room for him in the story, but the fact that there is no Malyck mention at all in the expansion points to the likelihood that he was merely forgotten during its development.

The troubling thing about this is that the careless handling of his story may force future games/expansions into either detailing his failure or, less likely, creating a comeback that will do little to patch up his lack of involvement with defeating Mordremoth.

Speaking of…

 

  1. Did killing Mordy actually feel like defeating an Elder Dragon?

The final story instance in Heart of Thorns was anticlimactic—in most games, the developers would have an awareness of this and have some sort of twist after the “boss battle,” revealing that the villain was someone else all along. This has been done before in the game, so if they weren’t going to do it this time, there should have at least been more energy devoted to making the last battle worthy of being the last battle. However, defeating Mordremoth was too much like any other story instance: needlessly difficult at times to get you riled up for the end, yet over quickly. This is a complaint purely about the story, since the battle itself is gorgeous and done well outside of the random plot points that don’t seem to make sense to anyone but the characters.

weakness2

No sylvari thought of this beforehand?

Photo credit: Mel

 

It’s kind of cool that the Dream is a plane of existence that you can enter, whether you’re a sylvari or not. It’s just…how can you defeat him using the Dream? Any explanation, no matter how contrived, would have been adequate, as long as it hinted at as a possibility earlier in order to avoid this pseudo- deus ex machina. We could have used the Dream against him this entire time?

weakness1

This wasn’t really the hint we had in mind.

Photo credit: Mel

 

It’s clear in interviews and most aspects of the game that ArenaNet loves their game and their fanbase. As with all games, the fans can get militant about the content, and it’s difficult to express even slight discontent without sounding aggressive. This article comes from a place of love for Guild Wars 2, as do all of our articles, and the flaws in the expansion taught us that respect for the lore is paramount to a large chunk of the community.

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