I am often stunned by the sheer level of detail that went into the design and implementation of Guild Wars 2. Yes, I love questing, but when I don’t have the time or just want to do something relaxing, there’s so much more to do in Tyria. One of my favorite GW2 pastimes is swimming (no jokes about the natural buoyancy of sylvari, please…).
GW2 really hit the mark here. Not only is the water beautiful and realistic, but swimming feels authentic. On my first full day of GW2, I spent over an hour just splashing around, swimming and exploring in a single area. I love that there is no timer for underwater areas, no oxygen meter to keep up with. Swimming is hassle-free. I’m not great at underwater combat; spear guns and harpoons really aren’t my forte. Combat feels as it should though, and I have to admit, trying to fire an arrow or swing a greatsword would be pretty ridiculous in those situations.
I thought I would share a couple of my favorite splashy haunts, which I love for varying reasons. There is so much more than scenery to be had on your aquatic adventures (though there’s plenty of that, too!).
For the player seeking relaxation and peaceful vistas, I recommend swimming to the area just east of Laughing Gull Island along the Bloodtide Coast. Here, if you don’t mind fighting your way across the island, you will be rewarded by spectacular views and water that you just know is warm and inviting. The weather and the time of day play games of light and shadow with the water, the sky, and the picturesque islands directly opposite Laughing Gull. If you’re screenshot-happy like me, you’ll thoroughly enjoy the 360-degree beauty of this spot as you swim through the narrow channel (the chef in me insists on reminding you that there are sugar pumpkin nodes, lots of them, on Laughing Gull Island, though they’re surrounded by angry trolls — soloing them is not your best bet if you’re not playing a melee char.)