Editorials

Soaring Through New (Old) Skies

Now that gliding has been introduced to Core Tyria in the latest seasonal patch, a realm of opportunities has been opened to players everywhere. Other than reaching some previously unattainable areas (for good reason), we can now view the world of Guild Wars 2 in a whole new light. By that, I mean having the ability to glide far above all of the well-known and loved landscapes and view them from afar.

After scouting various maps and searching for the highest cliffs and landmarks to glide from, here is a small list of cool places to fling yourself off of in hopes that you can obtain an amazing view of the land the like of which has never been seen before. Side note: there are certain parts of Central Tyria where gliding is disabled, such as in jumping puzzles where it could be considered exploiting the puzzle.

Rata Sum, Rata Sum

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One of my first thoughts when gliding was announced for Core Tyria was the various cities. The Grove was what I first traveled to, but it’s more like an obstacle course than an easy gliding experience. So, I immediately traveled to Magicat Waypoint in Rata Sum, and jumped off the edge. You can get a great view of the outer edges of the city’s central structure, as well as the rarely seen landscape below. Just beware: if you glide too close to the water it will automatically teleport you back to where you started. Some might view this as a blessing however, seeing as it allows you to try it again and again without having to waypoint every time.

Maelstrom’s Bile, Mount Maelstrom

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Next, Mount Maelstrom was the highest place in Central Tyria that I could think of. After traveling south from Ashen Waypoint to reach the vista at the top of the volcano, you can jump off either edge. This affords you a great shot of both the verdant land at the base of the mountain, as well as the inside of the fiery giant without having to be burned to a crisp. Just be careful where you land!

Hidden Garden Jumping Puzzle, Mount Maelstrom

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In the same map, there is also the Hidden Garden Jumping Puzzle that, in my opinion, is one of the most beautiful locations. There are many ways to reach it, but the easiest is from Criterion Waypoint, where an event will start that asks you to kill two veteran rock dogs (named Keepers of Earth). A portal will appear which you have to go through in order to reach Dierdre’s Steps, which houses this hidden jumping puzzle. If you head to the northernmost point of this area, and complete this part of the puzzle, you can reach the highest point. By jumping off, you escape several air elementals who, despite their name, cannot ride the wind in pursuit.

Griffonrook Run Jumping Puzzle, Lornar’s Pass

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From the False Lake Waypoint, you can see this pirate-filled island base, reminiscent of old Lion’s Arch – if it was twenty times smaller and the pirates were never very successful. South of this, under the water, there is a stone brick alcove. Inside of it is a secret passage to the Griffonrook Run Jumping Puzzle, with a portal that takes you to the true start of it. Gliding, unfortunately, has been disabled here, as it would make completing this particular puzzle a piece of cake. However, if you do happen to run to the end (with or without the bomb needed to “unlock” the chest at the end), you will be able to glide once more. With this tactical aerial advantage, the pirates will never know what hit them.

Isenfall Waypoint / Isenfall Lake, Snowden Drifts

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Now we’ll travel to the snowier climes of Snowden Drifts. From the Isenfall WP, there is a small hill to the south that you can climb. Traversing up this hill will require a bit of gliding, but is rewarding if done correctly. This is done by gliding to the eastern side of the hill. Once atop the hill, choose a direction and glide! The best side I found was to the north, back towards the waypoint as well as the frozen Isenfall Lake.

Archen Foreland, Bloodtide Coast

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Next, we go to the humid swamps of Bloodtide Coast. From the Stormbluff Beacon Point of Interest next to the appropriately named Stormbluff Waypoint, you can run to the top of the small stronghold, and glide off of the northern tower towards the porous limestone beach of Archen Foreland. Once there, play around with some crabs and quaggan as part of a renown heart objective.

Cerebroth Waterfall & Wizard’s Fief, Kessex Hills

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In Kessex Hills there are two areas I instantly thought of: the waterfall north of Cereboth Waypoint and the Wizard’s Fief of Garenhoff, south of Darkwound Waypoint. If you simply take a dive off the waterfall and look back, you can get a good view of the vista and the luscious flora surrounding it.

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Then, from an outcropping of rock just south of the waypoint and north of the town, you can safely glide over the buildings and wave to the townsfolk and elementals below.

Keeper’s Sanctum, Fireheart Rise

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The border of life and death is clear here in the fields of Fireheart Rise. From a cliff right next to Keeper’s Waypoint, you can glide towards the Keeper’s Sanctum and the Provatum Castrum Point of Interest to the southeast, and dodge the falling fireballs before landing on the barren lands of the Flame Legion, or choosing to stay on the slightly-more-healthy grassland.

Crystalwept Groves, Iron Marches

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Within Ascalon once more, Iron Marches offers a far different landscape in the form of the crystalline waste provided by Kralkatorrik. From the Viper’s Run Waypoint, head towards the vista to the southeast and jump off from the hill towards the Crystalwept Groves. Just try not to land in the bubbling tar; it doesn’t seem to be a substance beneficial towards your health.

The Weeping Isle, Caledon Forest

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Last but not least, Caledon Forest is the place to be. With it being one of the greenest and most lush areas of Tyria, it is filled with fantastic sights of both nature and sylvari construct. From Brigid’s Overlook Waypoint in the center of the map, climb the sylvari tower and leap off to the northwest towards The Weeping Isle Point of Interest. You get a great view of the pristine water as well as the colorful buildings of the Mabon Market in the background.

There are many more sights to behold in Core Tyria – just when you think you’ve seen everything there was to see! Gliding has opened up an entirely new world within Guild Wars 2, which includes utility as well as the scenery. While scouting these locations, I found gliding to be particularly useful in traversing areas that were otherwise difficult to pass through. Something to test out yourself, as well!

If you have found any awesome places to glide off from, leave a comment below to share with others where to go!

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