RAIDING MISCONCEPTIONSMightyTeapotgiveshistakeonwhy raiding isn’t just for the PvE elite.
16BOUNTIES: A VISUAL GUIDE TOUNSTABLE MAGIC ABILITIESToomuchmagicimbuedintocreatures isneveragoodthing!Learnhowto recognise the dangers that await you.
76MAGIC SYSTEMS IN TYRIAWeexplorehowmagicmanifests itselfintheworldofTyria,fromElder Dragons to the Mists.
32PARADIGM SHIFTWhosaysheavyarmorisn’tformages? Amala’slatestfashionchoicesput scholars on the front lines!
FEATURED60GUIDING STARSThelatest LivingWorldupdatebrought ustotheMists.Recapwhatwe encountered there.65TYRIA IN FLUXOurworldisalwayschanging,alwaysin flux. A lot has happened since 1325 AE...
COMMUNITYGUILD SPOTLIGHTThisissuewefeatureOwl Legion, a WvW guild in NA with a great community.
LORE & HISTORY
23THE FUNCTION OFDRAGONSElderDragonsfeedonleyenergy andothersourcesofmagicalpower. Discover why Tyria depends on them.A FORGE OF ICE AND FIREThisyear,Zommorosopenedup theMysticForgetoraiders.Phoenix unearths what was waiting inside...
WITH LEAPS AND BOUNDSDraxynniccontinueshisseries exploringthelorebehindelite specialisations with the daredevil.
10MINOR RACES,MAJOR MAGICManyracesinTyriawieldsome formof magic, as Phoenix uncovers...
THE MERCHANT PRINCEStarconspiratorpresentsanepicpoem on the life of Drooburt.
THE CATACLYSMOneminuteOrrstoodproud,thenext itwasnothing.Justonespellwasallit took...
EMPTY SHELLDelveinsidethemindofaley-line anomaly with this short storyby Jalinar.
ANOMALOUS VISIONArevenantCommanderisplaguedby visions of a strange anomaly.
2GUILDMAG #23 | In This Issue
We’ve packed this magazine with amazing art from talented community artists, as well as Guild Wars 2 concept art. Look out for this logo for official art produced by ArenaNet.
here do I even begin this time around? It seems that every year our Annuals grow insize andimprove inquality, and this year is no exception!We’ve partnered with more community members,producedmorecontent andraisedmoremoneyforcharity than any previous magazine, and asalwaysIcouldn’tbemoreproud of the final outcome.I’d like to start by talking about the amazing work undertaken by the World Child Cancer charity. You may be forgiven for thinking that everyone inthe world has access to solid healthcare, but this simply is not the case. Survival rates for children with cancer in developing countries are far belowthose in developed nations, and it is here whereWorldChildCancerchooses to work. Theybring together healthcare professionals from
both sides to ensure that children in developing countries have the best possible chance of beating cancer, in addition to offering support to the families. Many of us have been affected by cancer, including our very ownFearan whose child has a rare form of the disease.Thisiswhywe’redonating this year’s Annual proceeds to World Child Cancer - so on behalf of the charity and everyone at GuildMag, thank youfor your donation that came as part of pre-ordering this magazine.On a lighter note, the theme of this year’s magazine is Tyria in Flux. Forquite some time we’ve been experiencing the effects of excess magic inthe world of Tyria and how it has warpedthe gameworld.TheGuildMagAnnual 2018 is an attempt to capture this in magazine format. We have a range of articles exploring the
nature of magic and the changing nature of Guild Wars 2as an MMORPG, including contributions by Kora, MightyTeapot and Jalinar (Chronicles of Tyria). We’ve also commissioned asetof posters from littleMURE which depict a timeline of events that have shaped the world of Tyria. And as if that wasn’t enough, you’ll find more custom artwork hidden throughout the remaining pages -have fun exploring!So, all that remains to be said is that I hope you enjoy the latest GuildMag Annual! Please remember to visit the channels of our partners listed on the following pages, and if this is your first GuildMag magazine, you can view all of our previous editions for free at www.guildmag.com.Happy reading!
Welcome to the GuildMag Annual 2018! This is the largest project we’ve ever taken on, all to supportthis year’s charity: World Child Cancer. On behalf of everyone involved in this magazine,thank you for your support and we hope you enjoy everything this Annual has to offer!
Editor’s Letter | GUILDMAG #23
/Bukk94 /groups/ GuildWars2CZSK
Thank you to everyone involved in this year’s GuildMag Annual! Without the support of everyone listed on these pages, this magazine wouldn’t exist and we wouldn’t have beenabletoraiseover $3,500forourchosencharityWorld Child Cancer.Please visit our partner’s respective channels to view their awesome content!
dds are you know something about the magitech of the asura, the Dream’s sharedconsciousnessofthesylvari,andthe shapeshifting abilities of the norn grantedtothembytheSpiritsofthe Wild. But many of the unplayable races and groups around Tyriahave unique forms anduses of magic too. The most obvious examples are the five ancient races - the dwarves, Forgotten, jotun, mursaat, andtheSeers-butthereareseveral other notable ones. This article isn’t exhaustive; I’m instead focusing on the most magical and prominent among them and have chosen the five we have the most information about.
Anyone who playedGuild Wars Prophecieswill know all about the mursaat,a race of floating spellcasters who wore golden armor and had long black feathers radiating from their backs. The
downfall of the mursaat was foretoldby Glint in the Flameseeker Prophecies. Afraid of their eventual doom, they manipulated a group of Krytans that came to be known as the White Mantle into doing their bidding.Themursaatexcelled in magic;they were all members of one of the original spellcasting professions: elementalist, mesmer, monk, and necromancer. Lucent the Spectral, one of the last living mursaat, was an assassin inaddition to being a mesmer. Nevertheless, the only assassin skill he used was asignet, not amartial or melee skill.Allofthemursaatelementalistsused air magic. This small detail turned out to be an important tell in Rising Flames,thesecondepisodeof Living World Season 3. In it, Lazarus the Dire, the last living mursaat, shows upand offers tohelp save Aurene from the enhanced destroyers. However, this fake Lazarus, who turns out to be Balthazar, uses only fire magic, while the real Lazarus from Guild Warswas a dual-classed
LORE - Minor Races, Major Magic| GUILDMAG #23
elementalist and necromancer who used only air magic like the rest of hiskin.Accordingly,whenLazarusis truly resurrected in the Living Worldepisode One Path Ends, he calls forthlightningstormsandsummons necrotic orbs, as would be expected in converting his abilities from the original games to Guild Wars 2.The mursaat also had two interesting and unique abilities common to all members of the race. The first was the ability to shift into adifferent plane of existence, thereby rendering themselves invisible to those who did not have the Gift of True Sight. For this reason, they came to be known as the Unseen Ones. The Gift of True Sight was acquired by Ascending -communing with the Human Gods and being blessed with Divine Fire- or, in Canthan tradition, becoming Weh no Su (“closer to the stars”) by fulfilling the trials of the Celestials and Oracle of the Mists. The Tests of Ascension were taken by Central Tyrians and Elonians andproctored by the Forgotten.The second unique ability was SpectralAgony,amagicthatinflicted excruciating pain, health loss, and eventually death upon its victims. The Seers created a safeguardagainstthisdeadlyability;theyused the spectral essence of aphantom eidolon to infuse armor with specialproperties that wouldprotect the wearer.The mursaat were also skilled crafters, able to create an army of jade constructs to combat the Elder Dragonsduringtheirlastawakening. They were not able to transfer theirSpectral Agony to these constructs so they coulduse it at will, but they enchanted them so that whenever theyattacked,SpectralAgonywouldbe applied to their enemies.
The Forgotten were arace ofserpentsthatslitheredupright.They
had gray or bronze scales and four arms. As previously mentioned, they oversaw pilgrims who wished toAscend,buttheircontributionstoTyria are much larger than that.Like the mursaat, the Forgotten were all spellcasters,but their elementalists favored earth magic. They also decided to assault the Elder Dragons head on by building enchanted armors that could wield physical weapons like hammers, bows, and swords. When they failed to rout Zhaitan, the mursaat planarshiftedtoprotectthemselves and their magic, but the Forgotten agreed to seal their magic with that of the other races and work toward a different solution.To that end they discovered Glaust,a champion of Kralkatorrik, and attempted to purify her. It is unknown how exactly they subdued
her, but within Arah they managedtoperformaritualthatcleansedher of Elder Dragon corruption, though she retained her magical abilitiesandcrystallineform.Afterwards,the cleansed dragon championtook on the name Glint.The spell used to cleanse her does not require magic specificto the Forgotten. As a sylvari, Warden Illyra managed to recreate the ritual thousands of years later with a Risen chicken in the now-ruined city of Arah. It was also discovered that Forgotten artifacts were immune to dragon corruption, so we know theForgotten used their knowledge not justtoreversethecorruption,butto protectotherobjectsfromitaswell.About 200years ago, some of the Forgotten joined witha group of humans, comprised mostly ofCanthans and Elonians, dedicated
12GUILDMAG #23 |LORE - Minor Races, Major Magic
to preserving Glint’s legacy. They performed aritual on the humans who volunteered, transferring their soulsintotheenchantedarmorthey had made so long ago. They used their preventative magic on the armors, ensuring they would never be corruptedbythe Dragons. This groupofhumanscametobeknown as the Exalted.Unfortunately, the Forgotten’s restorativemagiceitherdidnotwork at all, or was not potent enough whenit was attempted to cleanse an Elder Dragon. Kralkatorrik’s hunger was too great tobe cowed, and it swept through Elona, exterminating half of the Forgotten in one fell swoop. Presumably this is because the Dragons are primal forces of nature, intended only to keep the balance of magic in check. Interestingly enough, the Forgotten either couldnot -or never tried to - use the preventative magic on themselves because there are Branded Forgotten in the desert, including the former monk, Josso Essher. While the restoration ritual works on living creatures, the protective spell may only work on inanimate objects.
The Zephyrites are not actually a race, but a neutral, nomadic sect of humans who were originally servants of Glint. After Glint’s death, they traveled to her domain to collect crystals from the site of her demise to prevent them from falling intothe wrong hands. Some of the Zephyrites are also the aforementioned humans who volunteered to become Exalted.They discovered the three Aspects of air magic: Lightning, Sun, and Wind, and developed a way togrow additional glowing crystals that containthemagicalessenceofeach. Using these crystals, theZephyrites’ physical abilities are enhanced. Wind crystals allow them to ignore gravity and ride the wind, leaping
muchhigherthannormallypossible. Lightning crystals enable them to dart from one spot to another, much like lightning strikes the ground. Finally, sun crystals let them briefly travel at the speed of light. Scholars who have studied the Aspects in-depth and can wield them with proficiencyare knownas Aspect Masters.TheyguardthesecrystalsandGlint’s legacy closely, affording strangers a chance to use them only when they host their Bazaar of the Four Winds, an annual trading event and market in the Labyrinthine
Cliffs. Damaged crystals, like those spread around after the Zephyrites’ crash in Dry Top, lose their power rapidly. Presumably this is meant as a deterrent against stealing.
A Crack in the Ice, the third episode of Living World Season 3, took us into the northern Shiverpeaks. It was there that we learned more about the origins of the kodan,a race of humanoid polar bears, and their magic, which is closely tied to their religion.
LORE - Minor Races, Major Magic| GUILDMAG #23
The god of the kodanis Koda, also known as the Ancient One. Bear was the first creature to speak against chaos andinstability and thispleasedKoda,forthebearswho werereadytoguidethespiritsofthe world he transformed into kodan. According to the Flamebearers in Bitterfrost Frontier, Koda taught the kodan to guide all manner of spirits, from water and stone to plants andanimals. Naturally, the tribe of Flamebearers accepted the spirit of fire. Supposedly their sanctuary contains the last living flame begotten by the original fire spirit.It is unknown howmuch of the Flamebearers’ story is true, but the fires tended in their braziers do have special properties; they can make living creatures resistant to the deadly frostbite caused by being so near to the ice dragon, Jormag. It may be that kodan who have dedicated themselves to other nature spirits have unique magical abilities too, but we have yet to see any other tribes, save those fleeing Jormag in their floating sanctuaries.The spiritual leader of a group of kodaniscalledtheVoice.Theyspeak to Koda and interpret his will as well as perform other record-keeping duties and rituals. Occasionally a frenzyconsumesthemknownasthe Rage of Koda which may be caused by them casting their minds to the Mists for so long to seek guidance from their god. Whenthe Voice is released from this religious fervor they seem to have no memory of what transpired shortly before or during their episode.
Guild Wars 2: Path of Firebrought back Elona and the djinn. The djinn are spirits with elemental magic that often protect items, places, or causes. Generally, they all float and have four arms and a torso with no discernable legs, but their appearance varies based on their
element and they cantake on different forms. They might also have wrappings or face or head coverings of some kind and emit an elemental aura.Unlike elementals, djinn have agency and intelligence, enabling themtocommunicatewithdifferent species and races. They are masters of their respective element, each abletothrowprojectilesoffire,rock, ice, or lightning, summonstorms, and embodythe fluidity of their element temporarily, allowing them to pass through enemies.Thedjinnarealsoabletomodifythe tormented remnants of Abaddon’s magic that infected Elona after Nightfall. They forge runes, imbue these with their own essence, and then arrange the runes in the shape of jackals to contain the corrupted sand. The jackals are thentamed so theydon’t act onthe will of the
fallen god. Since the jackals are comprised of nothing but sandand magical energy, they are able to travel through sand portals,using the Mists as agateway to get to another potentially far-offlocation instantly.Thedjinnhaveotherspecialabilities too. It is said they can grant wishes and bestow powers on others who win their favor or manage to subjugate them. All of them, no matter their element, can construct shields of white light that protect an area and all the creatures within it from the lightning of the Brand.The djinn cannot be Brandedand can theoretically imbue others with a minor form of their resistance. This might extend toother forms of dragon corruption, but no other Elder Dragon has gotten close to the djinn to know for sure. Oddly enough,a fire djinn namedVemyen
14GUILDMAG #23 |LORE - Minor Races, Major Magic
was recently Branded. This may have been caused by Kralkatorrik’s new control over the domains of death, shadow, mind, and plants, courtesy of the deaths of Zhaitan and Mordremoth.
Like I said before, this is just a small smattering of the unplayable races and groups around Tyria that use magic in unique ways. Some races, such as the largos andtengu, likely have their ownforms of magic or spirituality that remain a mystery duetotheirrareorsecludednatures. The Seers died out before we could learn anything particular about them, but we know they were great spellcastersinlife.Thejotun,though still living, have forsaken magic, so we know little about their ancient powers except that they were tied to astronomy and the cosmos, and they consider the harnessing of the elements“primitive.”Whetherthat’s intended to meanit’s crude and unsophisticated or simply archaic is up for interpretation. Who knows if the Canthans, if and whenwe’re finally able to access their continent again, have some completely different sorcery in store for us. The spellsweuseasplayersandtheraw magic we’re usedto seeing inthe Elder Dragons are but afew of the many techniques developed over time in Tyria.
16GUILDMAG #23 |EDITORIAL - Bounties: A Visual Guide to Unstable Magic Abilities
AVisual Guide To UNstable Magic abilities
BYAMALA&MAIIRINCommander! Reports of creatures driven insane by ley energy are coming from all over. What are you going to do about it?
ounties are anopen world, group-orientated activity introduced in GuildWars2:Pathof Fire.The premise is that with the death of two Elder Dragons, high levels of magic have been released intothe world.Thisleyenergyisaffectingthe wildlife, making certain individuals of a species larger, stronger,and more dangerous. Bounties are contracts to take down specific targets affected by this magical influx, which can be obtained from bounty boards in PoF maps.If you’re going to take a contract fromaboard,you’llneedtoprepare for the different mechanics you’ll face out in the field. The normal variety of targets are Champions and will give you two mechanics to deal with. Each bounty boardwill also have one Legendary bounty, whichwill have three mechanics. To see which mechanics you’ll have to deal with, look for the blue buffs underneaththeenemy’snameplate. Each mechanic will also have visual cues during the fight which are easier to notice in a combat situation, so to help yourecognise these cues we’ve put together this guide.
While Exploiter is up, you will see a blue bubble around your target. Touching the bubble will grant youthe effect Identified Weak Point. This lasts for 20 seconds and in that time you can damage your target. Without this buffyou can’t damage your target. Of course you can also simply stand inside the bubble anddomeleedamage,butifyouareusingrangedweaponsyou will need to reactivate the effect by touching the bubble again.
EDITORIAL - Bounties: A Visual Guide to Unstable Magic Abilities| GUILDMAG #23
While this ability is active you will see two types of blue areas around your target: one in melee range and one outside of that range. You can only damage the target as long you are standing in the blue zone - outside of this zone your attacks will be blocked. The best thing to do here is make sure your character is wielding melee and ranged weapons. When the area lights up brighter, you can then step into the newblue area and continue attacking. On the edge of the blue area there are arrows pointing inwards to show you where you need to move to keep damaging your target.Propagator
With Propagator, tendrils will spawn around the target and heal it. You can take them down in just a fewhits, or entirely ignore them as they will decay overtime. This mechanic depends heavily on how many allies you have to takeabountydown.Withalargergroup,theamountofhitpointshealedwillbeinferiortothegroupDPS.However, with a smaller group your DPS will be lower than the amount of hitpoints healed, in whichcase taking down the tendrils becomes a priority. They also count towards the Plant Slayer achievement.
18GUILDMAG #23 |EDITORIAL - Bounties: A Visual Guide to Unstable Magic Abilities
Restorer is similar to Propagator, butinstead of spawning tendrils thisability will spawnhealing coalescences. You might have seen them before; they look like green air elementals. You can ignore them whenyouhavealotofalliesbecausethecoalescences will not be able to outheal the amount of damage you deal.But,aswithPropagator,theyposeathreatwhen you have only ahandful of people.
Personally, every time I see this bounty, “Mambo Nr. 5” plays in my head. It is kind of like follow the leader. Your target will have ared or a green light next to it. A red light means youhave to standstill and attack, while agreen light means youhave tomove while attacking. If you don’t follow these rules, your attacks will miss.
Thismechanicisbroadcastbyglowingleystonespheresthatlevitateofftheground.Youwanttoruntotheseoften and stand within their area-of-effect to get the Resistor effect. When youare outside of these AoEs,a debuffwill stack on you called Ley-Energy Buildup. The more stacks of this you have, the more damage will be done to youper tick. Gaining the Resistor effect wipes out all stacks of Ley-Energy Buildup.ThesafestmethodistouserangedweaponsandstaywithinthesafeAoEs,butifyou’reusingmeleejustremember to dart back in when you get to around five stacks of buildup. Note that if one of the leystone spheres spawns where you are, you won’t get the Resistor buff until you leave the AoE and re-enter.
EDITORIAL - Bounties: A Visual Guide to Unstable Magic Abilities| GUILDMAG #23
You’ll notice the Sniper mechanic by the glowing orbs that follow random players.Stayawayfromthese!Whethertheywillhurtyouornotwilldependon if you’re Marked. Foreboding, isn’t it? This is a debuffthat can be seen on your UI, but you will also have aglowing gunsight icon on you. The aforementioned glowy orbs are actually also gunsights and if these touch you while Marked, you’ll soon be hit with a powerful shot whichwill probably down you. This shot comes in the form of a blue fireball which can be dodged, though if you don’t feel confident with this and feel doom breathing downyour neck, heal up beforehand. Make sure you’re standing close to other players so they can revive you quickly.
Captor is similar to a move used by Balthazar’s Herald inThe Sacrifice story instance. Random players will be surroundedby an ethereal blue ring. Youcan’t walk out of these, they will just knock you back into the centre, but you can dodge out of them. Youcan also shadowstep or blink out. They don’t hurt, so you can just stay inside if the target is within your weapons’ range.
20GUILDMAG #23 |EDITORIAL - Bounties: A Visual Guide to Unstable Magic Abilities
This is denoted by pulses of icy rings coming from the target. Being hit by these blasts will chill you and cause a small interrupt. Deal with these as you would Tequatl’s waves: jump over them.
Withthisoneyou’llseeanominousdepictionofaneye above your target. Like in the Shattered ObservatoryFractal,whenyou seethisturn yourcharacteraway.If youarefacingthetargetwhentheeyeispresent,your character will be temporarily petrified and therefore vulnerable to other dangers.
Thereisreallynotmuchyoucandoagainstthisability. The bounty will automatically block all attacks for a time. All you can do is wait for it to end.
EDITORIAL - Bounties: A Visual Guide to Unstable Magic Abilities| GUILDMAG #23
Ifyoudon’twanttobepoisonedandtormented,stayoutofthesedangerousfields.Thesefieldsspawnandexpand around your target, but if you have a ranged weapon you can still attack.SCORCHER
This ability is the same as Polluter, except now the fields are made out of fire instead of poison. Standing in fire is deadly!SPINNING LASER
The central points of the spinning laser spawn first. These will look like blue, crackling nodes of magic and their appearance should give you enough time to get out of the vicinity before the lasers start spinning around them. If you don’t get out, they hurt -a lot. Don’t worry too muchif you see your friend get hit and go down as the lasers do not hurt people in downed state; if you try to revive them, you’ll just go down yourself.
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There will be several large, wispy circles with a skull -exactlythesameoneasyouseewhenyougetfeared-floatingabove eachcircle. If you stepintothese fields, you will be feared. Be careful as these could send you off of a cliff.
Three hammers will be rotating around the target. Being hit by one will knock youdown. The hammers are a sizable distance away from the target so be careful if you’re attacking from ranged.
This list of mechanics is long, but with practice they will all become intuitive and you’ll be able to explain them to others with confidence. Helping others understand may be the best skill to take away from this guide as bounty targets cannot be taken down alone. If you’re taking one on with only a handful of peopleinsteadofazerg,thepressureforeachpersontoperform is much higher, so share your new expertise!Good luck with your hunts, Commander.
LORE - The Function of Dragons| GUILDMAG #23
The Function of Dragons
nhisfinalwords,Palawa Joko is reported to have claimed that the Elder Dragons are the “lifeforce” of this world.This is not the belief of the Priory. Magic is the true life force of Tyria. However, as recentevents have shown,thereiscertainlysuchathing as too much. Increased levels of ambientmagicsincethedestruction of two Elder Dragons and the Maguumabloodstonehaveresulted in the tearing of rifts in reality and the creation of destructive sentient coalescences. Simulations indicate that further overloading of energy would be more destructive still. In fact, too much could risk tearing apart the world in spontaneous
cataclysms.Instead of being the life force of the world themselves, the Elder Dragons act as magical regulators. When the levels of ambient magic rise, the ElderDragons rise with them, consuming this power and containingitwithinthemselvesuntil they eventually go to sleep. Once they enter hibernation, the dragons unknowingly begin to slowly release energy back into the world, until the ambient magic rises to a level that causes them to awaken once again.While this system has kept Tyria alive in the past, the problem is that the dragons are indiscriminate in theirfeeding.Ratherthanfeedingin a manner that causes little harm to
the other inhabitants of the world, thedragonsactivelyseekoutenergy that is found within, or otherwise in use by, other living beings. In fact, they seem to specifically seek out the magic of sapient beings when given the opportunity. From the perspective of their ecological purpose as magical regulators, this is a highly inefficient system. It maximises the damage they cause, while mostly consuming power ‘bound’ within artifacts or living beings, ratherthan the ambient magic that threatens to overload Tyria’s ley lines.In addition, the dragons do not stop once this ambient dweomer has been reduced to safer levels. Instead, they continue to consume,
An explanatory document on the shift of the Pact’s objectives regarding the Elder Dragons, penned by Scholar Eleanor Draxynnus in the Season of the Scion, 1331 AE.
24GUILDMAG #23 |LORE - The Function of Dragons
only entering hibernationwhen they sense nothing left to absorb. For Tyria’s biosphere, this is just as dangerous as an overload; since living beings require magic, consuming it all wouldresult inthe death of those beings.The solution in past awakenings was to hide some of this energy from the Elder Dragons, allowing Tyriato recoveronce they went into hibernation. The last time they were awake, this was accomplished by the combination of the original bloodstone, whichabsorbed much of Tyria’s ambient magic before the dragons could, andthrough Glint hiding the elder races from the dragons. Inprinciple, this suggeststhatthebloodstonescould themselves be usedas a regulatory system- as, infact, the gods appear to have done before their Exodus. However, those withknowledge of the bloodstones to use them in this manner are believed not to be present on Tyria any longer.
To resolve this, Glint and the Forgotten formed a plan to replace the Elder Dragons with new beings which could regulate magic to safe levels.Insteadofthedestructiveness of the Elder Dragons, the idea was that the replacements would be beings that recognised the responsibility inherent in the role. Rather than engaging in cycles of unchecked consumption followed by hibernation, they would act for thegoodofTyriaanditsinhabitants. Unfortunately, withthe death of Vlast at the hands of the fallen god Balthazar, there is only one known candidate to assume this role: the second scion of Glint, Aurene.The connection between the Elder Dragons and magic is, however, morecomplicatedthansimplybeing oneoflivingstoragedevices.Similar
to how the Six Gods each represent different facets of existence, each of the Elder Dragons representeda differentsphereofTyria’sdweomer, a concept encompassed by the diagrams of the All found in the Durmand Priory. Itseems that while each of the Elder Dragons was alive, they were able to monopolise their own spheres so that other Elder Dragons were unable to use those powers directly or to empower into their minions. Despite this, anElder Dragon is still able to make use of magic outside its ownsphere if it corrupts abeing which already had accesstothatenergy,asseenbythe use of the full spectrum of mortal disciplines by the Risen. After the death of Zhaitan and Mordremoth, other Elder Dragons proved fully capable of absorbing the power of their spheres.The possible implications of this are far-reaching. If these spheres of magic were always part of Tyria’s system, why was each dragon limited to its own speciality? Did the Elder Dragons have some means of jealously guarding the energy that fits within their own speciality so that the other Elder Dragons could not use it, even if mortals could? Or is it that magical power is something that can be transformed from one variety to another? In the lattercase,theElderDragonsmight, consciously or unconsciously, shift all of the dweomer they absorb into their own sphere. If this is the case, then the current wider range of capabilities shown by
the other Elder Dragons inthe wake of the deaths of Zhaitan and Mordremoth might be temporary. Consumption of large amounts of the dead dragons’power allows the remainder to employ powers associated with their spheres while the magic remains untransformed. Overtime,however,thisenergymay beabsorbedintotheirownspheres.Such aresult might bring relief at first, as Kralkatorrik, Primordus and Jormag would gradually revert to their original capabilities, but might represent a greater danger to Tyria. Over time, the spheres associated with the dead dragons might disappear altogether, removing those branches of magic from the world.It is also interesting to note that while a researcher might assume that the energy available to mortals would be divided among the same spheres, this does not appear to be the case. Of the various spellcasting professions of Tyria, only necromancers seem to fit nicely within a single sphere (that of Zhaitan). Meanwhile, the powers of mesmers andelementalists appeartobespreadacrossmultiple spheres. None of the spheres appear to grant powers similar to those of monks and guardians, or that allow access to the Mists (Kralkatorrik’s current ability to do so appears to be derived from absorbing Balthazar’s power).Weknowthatthedivisionsofmortal
magic derive from the splitting of the bloodstones, even if today these disciplines have become more a matter of tradition rather than being enforced bythe rules of magic. However, it does appear to indicate that there are dweomers in the world of Tyria that do not follow the same rules by which the Elder Dragons appear to be bound. Even if these ‘missing’ forms of magic do fit within a sphere, other beings are able to access the complete spectrum. Elder Dragons, in contrast, appear to be unable todo so outside of special circumstances (suchas a sphere being left without a corresponding Elder Dragon). Or it may simply be that the spheres controlled by the dragons do not encompass all magic, and that the magic of Tyria itself represents a seventh sphere, with some overlap with those of the Elder Dragons but nevertheless distinct.Having discussed the overall function of the Elder Dragons in Tyria’s ecosystem, it seems fitting to provideanoverviewoftheobserved spheres of each one.
ThefirstoftheElderDragonstorise, Primordus’connectiontofireisclear for all to see. Of the known Elder Dragons, Primordus’ disdain for corrupted minions is notable. While it is capable of corrupting living beings, it appears to prefer simply to kill. Instead, it forms its minions out of rock and magma in twisted mockeries of creatures such as trolls, harpies, and crabs. Combined with Primordus’ preference for dwelling underground, some have taken this to mean that the second part of the dragon’s’ sphere is earth magic, despite the apparent conflict this generates with Kralkatorrik’s domain of crystal. Others consider that the second part of Primordus’ magic is simply that of destruction.
The second dragonto rise was Primordus’ apparent opposite, the ice dragon Jormag. In addition to the elemental opposition of fire versus ice, Jormag, while often still
destructiveanduncaringofmortals, seems to show the most tolerance towards them. Specifically,Jormag appears to be willing to accept and empowertheSonsofSvanirwithout transforming them into icebrood, or taking away their free will, as long as they worship the dragon. Continued exposure to Jormag’s corruption appears to inevitably leadto a Son of Svanir becoming an icebrood regardless, unless he dies or turns away from the Sons first. Nevertheless, Jormag’s acceptance of followers that are not completely under its control is notable, and some suspect this might be a hint as to the second part of Jormag’s sphere.
The third Elder Dragon to rise in recent history, and the first todie. Zhaitan was known as the dragon of undeath for good reason: while the second part of its sphere is known to encompass shadow, it was Zhaitan’s use of death magic that resonated most clearly in the minds of those who fought him
“Confronting the Undead Dragon” - littleMUREThis piece captures the initial horror that surrounded the rotting corpse army of the Elder DragonZhatain. Trahearne valiantly faces off against the monstrous creature, their pitched battle playing out against the nondescript ruins of Orr.
26GUILDMAG #23 |LORE - The Function of Dragons
and his minions. Furthermore, it is perhaps this aspect whichis most dangerous when spreadamong the other dragons, allowing them to raise the dead whenpreviously they might have been limited to corrupting victims while still alive.
Due to the decay of the Scroll of the Five True Gods, much remains a mystery about the Deep Sea Dragon,includingitsname(weknow that it starts with an S, and that it awoke sometime before 1270AE, but little else). Water is believed to be among its domains, but this may simply be areflection of where it prefers to live, or even simply where it happened to be whenit awoke, rather than truly being part of its domain. Confirmation of this assumption, and identification of other aspects of its sphere, will not be possible without the acquisition of new sources or a confrontation with the Deep Sea Dragon or one ofits minions.
Possibly the most elemental of the ElderDragons,thecrystalsleftbythe Branding creates a clear indication of at least part of Kralkatorrik’s sphere. The other part can possibly be derived from observation: with the exception of Jormag’s blizzards, Kralkatorrik is the dragon most associated with extreme weather, withitspresenceandthatofitsmore powerful minions often heralded by tornadoes, Brandstorms, and even hurricanes. This suggests that the second aspect of Kralkatorrik’s sphere is likely connected to air or the sky in some fashion.
The last of the Elder Dragons to rise, Mordremoth leveraged both sides of its domain against the Pact to good effect before its demise. Its command over plantspresented the most obvious threat, but its mental influence proved the more dangerous in the end, allowing itto manipulate sylvari through the Dream and distribute its sapience across the jungle rather than being confined toa single physical body. Onlyby entering its mind through the Dream anddestroying it from within was Mordremothable to beslain.
While not technically an Elder Dragon,Glintprovidesaninteresting casestudyofthedistinctionbetween powers that come from anElder Dragon and those that do not. Like Kralkatorrik, Glint had command over crystals and over aspects of the sky, although Glint’s aspects of wind, sun and lightning are gentler in nature than Kralkatorrik’s. The aspect of sun, in particular, might not have originally come from her former master. Her telepathy and gift of prophecy definitelydidnot comefromKralkatorrik;instead,she is believedto have beencorrupted by Kralkatorrik some time in the
distant past specifically to grant the Elder Dragon aminion with capabilities he did not have access to directly. At present, not enough is known about the capabilities of Glint’s scions to comment on just how much of their capabilities havebeen inheritedfrom their mother, or whether they have developed their own unique magical skills.With our newfound knowledge, it is clear that our understanding of the Elder Dragons creates a dilemma for the Pact and other defenders of civilisation. They represent aclear and direct threat to civilisation in their destructive behaviour, but their deaths risk bringing about a
greater catastrophe. With luck, the ongoing efforts spearheadedby the Dragonslayer to find asolution to this problem will bear fruit. In the meantime, the Pact’s efforts have switchedfrom seeking to slay the Elder Dragons to a mission ofcontainment.
The Deep Sea Dragon
Duetothedecayofthe ScrolloftheFiveTrue Gods,muchremainsamysery abouttheDeepSeaDragon,including its name.
LORE - The Function of Dragons| GUILDMAG #23
“The Mouth of Mordremoth” - Pipann deviantart.com/pipannPipann’s piece, representing the physical form of the dragon, is as adorable as the tubby Mind of Mordremoth we fight in the heart of Maguuma. Then again, perhaps‘adorable’ isn’t quite the right word for an Elder Dragon...
These mages are already proficient with swords, axes and greatswords. Now they’ll need to train thoseweapon stances in full armour if they’re to build enough endurance for the frontlines.
t’s chaos out there. With the imbalance of magic wreaking havoc on the environment, aggravating the wildlife andempowering our enemies,we’vehadtoadaptandevolveourroles.Thequartermaster thoughtIwasmadwhenIrequisitionedheavyarmourforthescholarclasses and light armour for the soldier classes, but Itold her unconventional stratagemswillbethekey tovictory.Theydidn’tmakemeaTacticianoftheVigil for nothing.
32GUILDMAG #23 | FASHION - Paradigm Shift
FASHION - Paradigm Shift| GUILDMAG #23
Head: Nightmare Court Regalia 180 Deadly Blooms This helmet’s design was stolen from the upper echelons of the Nightmare Court hierarchy. I acquired the Deadly Blooms required to make the purchase by exploring the Twilight Arbor in Caledon Forest. Payment was made to the dungeon merchant near the Vigil Centerhouse inLion’s Arch.Shoulders: Chronomancer EpauletsFreeA member of my elite group of mesmers brought these shoulders to my attention. Every mesmer who mastersthe chronomancer specialisation earns a set.Chest & Legs: Luminous Regalia & Luminous CuissesFreeIt is vital to show veterans of any army that their experience and loyalty is valued. Starting from this year, those Commanders who’ve proven their loyalty to Tyria for six years will receive an Anniversary Armour Box. From this box, they may select a Luminous Armour set in their chosen armourclass.Gloves: Triumphant Armguards FreeThose of my colleagues who endanger themselves in the Mist Wars,a never-ending battle which pits Worldvs. World, can signup for one of many reward tracks. The lastreward of the repeatable Triumphant Armor Reward Track gives the recipient their choice of the Triumphant armour piece.Boots: Glorious Footgear FreeSometimes, one needs to get creative to motivate his troops. You could call it atraining exercise, but I must admit, I’ve enjoyed the arena matches I’ve held for them.
While theycompete in these player vs. player matches, they also earn points towards different reward tracks. If they reach the endof the repeatableGloriousArmourReward Track, they get their choice of the Glorious armour piece.DyesMidnight Yew – 14s 67c Tea Shade – 8s Tarnish – 16s 28c Green Shade – 44c
Naturally, the asuran soldiers have taken well to the mandatedstudies. It made sense to invest ingear that would better synergise with their new skills.
FASHION - Paradigm Shift | GUILDMAG #23
36GUILDMAG #23 |FASHION - Paradigm Shift
Head: Sun Aspect Eye 500 gemsWhenthe Bazaar of the Four Winds floatedin last Summer, I caught word of elaborate aspect crystals being sold by the Black Lion Trading Company. This one, the Sun Aspect Eye, emanates visible waves of power.Chest: Galvanic Coat FreeI could always depend onasuran cultural armour to be of the highest standards in design. The Galvanic Coat could have been sourced from the tier 1 cultural armour merchant in RataSum for 80 silver, but there were also the skritt traders in the Borderlands and Eternal Battlegrounds to consider. These skrittofferedthecoatatthecheaper price of 40 silver and20 Badges of Honour – the currency earned for participating in the Mist Wars. Luckily, our coffers were saved when I learned that asuran warriors, guardians and revenants receive this coat for free during their level 20 personal story steps.Legs: Funerary Tassets FreeTo satisfy the Primeval Steward at the Tomb of the Primeval Kings,I first had to complete ‘The Collection of Tribute’. This achievement involved the thirsty work of harvesting materials across the desert from the Crystal Oasis to the Domain of Vabbi. On completion,I receivedtheRoyalFuneraryLegging Box. If I hadn’t selected the tassets at that time,I would have had to return to the Primeval Steward and purchase another box for 2 gold, 40 silver and 80 Elegy Mosaics. Boots: Mursaat Brogans FreeYou could say the mursaat also woreanamalgamationofheavyand light armour. Getting these brogans meant returning to Siren’s Landing, the place where the last mursaat
perished, and then completing 36 achievements within the area. Each countedtowards the ‘One Path Ends Mastery’ achievement.DyesIllumination – 19s 81c Lemon Tint – 39s 73c Burgundy – 33s 16c Midnight Fire – 2g 80s 78c
aids in Guild Wars 2are an often misunderstood, and sometimesevenfeared,game mode. As a seasoned raider, I see the same misconceptions proliferating and preventing players from entering the scene or enjoying raids at all! Fortunately I have this article to clear up as many of these as I can.Right at the top of the list is the notionthat youhave to be good at the game to raid. This idea typically stems from newer raiders not approachingthecontentwithasolid game plan or knowledge about the encounter itself. If eventhe best players attempt to kill Qadim - the final boss in Mythwright Gambit -without knowing what to do, they are going tohave an extremely bad time. Progression raiding is an excellent example of this. Some of the most experienced raiders take hours to kill anew boss for the first time. This is because raids are like an elaborate puzzle; onceyou know howto solve andapproach the puzzle, itessentiallybecomestrivial.There are two main aspects of understanding raids: Strategy and roles. Strategy is the method for dealing with the mechanics, and roles are the professions and builds used to execute the strategy. For example, you will