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Guide to Traveling in Tyria

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August 6, 2012 - 2:19am -- jeffprime
guild wars 2 guide to traveling in tyria

Guild Wars 2 has a refreshing perspective to traveling throughout Tyria in that it becomes incredibly easy to move around the world once you've unlocked various travel points. I find this rewarding for two reasons. First, exploration provides tangible results by unlocking waypoints that you can instantly travel to from anywhere in the world. Second. you don't waste tons of time running from the far side of a zone to the opposite side to do a quest or take part in an event. I hate the slow traveling methods in most MMOs in that I want to spend my time heroically playing and not feeling like I'm playing Never-Ending Sprinting: The MMO!

Waypoint Travel

Traveling in Guild Wars 2 is simple and relies upon two types of transport: waypoints and asura gates. Waypoints are fixed locations throughout a zone that are unlocked when a player moves close to it. They are marked on your map with a diamond shape and are filled in when discovered. Waypoints appear as a floating stone marker that has a glow around it. Whenever you load into a zone, you can see the number of waypoints you've unlocked at the bottom of your loading screen. Once you've unlocked a waypoint, you can always travel to it by opening your map and clicking on the particular waypoint you wish to go to.

guild wars 2 guide to traveling in tyria

There is a monetary cost to travel to a waypoint and the cost increases the further away the waypoint is from you. You are not locked into any particular zone with waypoints and can travel to other zones by use of waypoints. Traveling within a city by using waypoints is free. Some waypoints may become contested if there is fighting going on in the vicinity and you will be unable to use them. You also cannot travel whilst you are in combat. If you die in combat, you can be revived at any waypoint by paying the associated travel cost. If you have no money, you'll be revived for free at the closest waypoint.

guild wars 2 guide to traveling in tyria

Waypoints on your map and up close.

Asura Gate Travel

Asura gates are the other side of the travel coin in Guild Wars 2. They are free to use and provide instantaneous transport to other asura gates. Most asura gates are found in the cities, with Lion's Arch having a particularly large number of gates, but can be found in the wilds. In appearance, they are circular gates that have a glowing purple circle in the center. Unlike waypoints, you don't have to rely upon discovering asura gates to use them. You can travel from Divinity's Reach to Lion's Arch without ever having stepped foot into the latter city before. Asura gates are also used to transport players into World-versus-World battles. You can find asura gates on your map as they're shown as a purple swirl.

guild wars 2 guide to traveling in tyria

Asura gates.

Direct PvP Travel and General Notes

While you are able to use asura gates to travel to both the Heart of the Mists - the main structured PvP lobby - and World vs. World zones, you can also do so more quickly through more direct travel methods.

To travel to the Heart of the Mists to test your build concepts on a variety of target dummies and NPCs, or to participate in either hot join or tournament PvP games, you can do so via the Hero window [H]. In this window you will want to open the PvP tab which will be found on the left side of the screen. In this view, there will be a clickable button towards the top labeled "Go to the Heart of the Mists". Clicking on this will instantly transport you to the PvP lobby from anywhere in the world.

The direct travel method for World vs. World zones is similar, only it will instead be found in the World vs. World Stats and Bonuses window [B]. Clicking on the "Go to World vs. World" button at the top of the window will bring up a drop-down list, allowing you to select whether you want to travel to the central contested map (The Eternal Battlegrounds), or one of the three Borderlands maps.

The last mode of traveling in Guild Wars 2 is your humble feet. Yes, while waypoints and asura gates allow for instantaneous travel, the sad fact remains that you will have to explore the world of Tyria mainly on your feet. You'll have to walk many a league to unlock the various waypoints in each zone, but the lure of exploration is its own reward. Who knows what you'll find as you explore the nooks and crannies of the world?

While the bulk of your traveling time will be spent on foot, the ability to use waypoints and asura gates allows you to travel quickly across the world once you've unlocked the various waypoints. This allows you to quickly get to the action, especially if you're doing your personal storyline, and not waste time tramping from one side of the map to the other over and over again. Spending a few coins is a small price to pay to instantly travel to another waypoint. Playing Guild Wars 2 should be about taking part in a glorious epic fantasy, not wasting time trudging around to get to the adventure.


MokiCzech's picture
Submitted by MokiCzech on

Fancy. Any idea how travel cost is exactly calculated, or how much will it cost to go from one side of the world to another (most expensive travel)? Also, what is the difference between Eternal BG and these Borderlands maps?

I'm a master baiter!

trenshod's picture
Submitted by trenshod on

The gates that take you from major zone to major zone (ie Human to Norn zones for example) those jumps are free if you use a gate instead of a way point. Didn't check price but if I were to guess its probably cheaper to hit a gate then hit way points once in the zone you want to be in.

I like being able to instantly travel from point to point in this game. Then again it works here for its  new game and they are looking to keep people on the content. I'm not going to lie and say I don't like having to wait on a boat or a blimp to get me to where I want to go. I like the fact that some things are more reality based in a world that is far far from reality. So I can't say that instant travel is great for every game but I will agree though it does suit GW2 very well.

Wedge7's picture
Submitted by Wedge7 on

I love the fast travel system. Being a no subscription cost game, Anet don't need you to waste time running / flying / riding from one place to another. They give you the option to map straight there, and have fun immediately. The fact that you have to activate each waypoint is great, as it makes you want to explore new areas, which will lead you on to new adventures. 

What @trenshod said above, it'll be a lot cheaper to use the asura gates to travel to different areas, rather than waypoint travel. If you're in the asura starting area (west of Tyria), and you want to head to the charr area (east of Tyria), it would be more sensible (assuming you've unlocked all the waypoints) to head to the Mists, then to Lion's Arch, then to the Black Citadel, and then waypoint from there, rather than waypoint directly. 

@MokiCzech the eternal BG is the central WvW map, whilst the outside borderlands maps are each controlled by one world / shard / server (so you have the green borderlands, the red borderlands, and the blue borderlands). Each borderlands map is identical. 

Galen's picture
Submitted by Galen on

Actually, I would say the easiest way to get from one zone to another would be to waypoint right to your cities Asura Gate, take that to Lions Arch and then take that to the other city.

Of course, that is mostly a matter of preference.


Wedge7's picture
Submitted by Wedge7 on

That would probs be easier, yeah, but more expensive. Also, unless the cost involved in waypointing across the entire of Tyria is stupidly expensive, the easiest would be just a single trip laugh

jeffprime's picture
Submitted by jeffprime on

I didn't get the chance to see how much travel would be waypoint-wise from one side of the world to the other during the betas. I did travel from one adjacent zone to another on a regular basis and the costs were pretty cheap, but I did notice the further the distance, the greater the cost. Using asura gates is the absolute cheapest way to go, but I don't mind killing a trash mob for bus fare. :p

sylvinstar's picture
Submitted by sylvinstar on

After a bit of leveling the costs are not bad.  If I was jumping from Metrica Province to the Norn area I would definitely use the asura gates to the main city for the free port and then use waypoints from there if needed.  It really depends on how far from the nearest gates and how much time you would spend running of course.