the grind for mounts needs to be toned down — Guild Wars 2 Forums
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the grind for mounts needs to be toned down

I have been an avid Guild wars player since guild wars 1. Over time the mount unlocking in this game has become worse and worse to the point where even just unlocking the new mastery for one of the oldest mounts in the game has become a grind with the XP requirement. The world trek-ing the figure out where the clues lead was enough but tacking the extra XP requirement after all of that is just too much. I could understand if all the mounts were always of use but so many replace others making them useless that making such a grind for a mount that would be useless after another one releases that does its job better makes no sense to me. There are MMO players from Super grindy MMO's like WoW and BDO even saying that they would rather do crazy grindy things in those games than deal with the way guild wars 2 handles mount grinding.

And I know what people will say to this already. They will make the same tired excuses for why Anet decided to handle mount unlocks such as Griffon, Rollerbeetle, SKyscale, and even the new MASTERY(which isn't even a new mount)for the skimmer. I guarantee the next expansion will have a new mount that makes all those other listed ones that you spent all your time grinding for obsolete.

and then there are those that have them saying that you don't need them whilst they fly away leaving you behind in map runs because the Original 4 mounts cant keep up with the newer ones thus the game tries to force you into participating in the long boring several day time gated rng based grind for the newer mounts.

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Comments

  • Katelynn.6593Katelynn.6593 Member ✭✭✭

    I do Dragonfall. The meta is being run most of the time. It filled up half of my XP bar and that was with me getting lost and not knowing how to get to a few of the big events the commander is at. I was also only able to use borrowed skyscales the last time I did the meta.

    If there is no commander, throw on a mentor tag and do something survivable like an escort mission and wait a mere few minutes for a pug to join. When you want to fight a champ, throw on a mentor tag.

    Thing about Dragonfall meta is that there are always players around who want to do it, but if they don't have a commander, they need another hub to see where a group is most likely to be. Hence mentor tag.

    Imagine how much XP someone who knows what they're doing and how to get around would get? I barely knew what to do and half my XP bar filled up!

    Other choices are:

    Hero point trains. Zerge through hero points. The XP rate is fast because an entire zerge is fast. It's also easier to keep up in some of the PoF maps.

    Bounty hunting - throw on a mentor tag and call out bounty name and bounty location. Players will run across half the map to join in sometimes.

    After playing games like RuneScape, I find the Guild Wars 2 system refreshingly fast.

  • Atomos.7593Atomos.7593 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Trise.2865 said:
    You probably don't remember, but in the years since Path of Fire, there was a push on the forums to "make content mean something". tl;dr: They wanted the various skills learned and unlocks achieved to be attached to questing, have their own stories, etc., etc. to make better use of the Mastery systems and drive engagement in expansion content. Folks were unhappy that their skills and abilities just happened, with no cause or reason.

    This is the result.

    Interesting. For me, no matter how much grind or "story" they bring to the mount unlocks, I would never become attached to a bunch of pixels in such a tiny part of 1 game. I don't think that getting mastery XP is that bad though, since you can get it however you like and whenever through different activities such as completing the game's story, events or exploration on different characters.

  • Astyrah.4015Astyrah.4015 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Taril.8619 said:

    @KAipurge.2147 said:
    long boring several day time gated rng based grind for the newer mounts.

    "Long" - I did the Skyscale in 3 days. Which funnily enough, is exactly how much it's timegated. Griffon and Beetle are only gated by having the events required pop (Which is at best an hour wait)

    "RNG" - Uhh... Exactly what part of any mount acquisition is RNG?

    "Grind" - It honestly sounds like you've never actually experienced an actual grind if you think that GW2's mounts require a "Grind". At worst, there's what? Getting the 250 of each LW4 currency? That's not even that bad can easily get it in a few hours depending on how many characters you have at level 80.

    exactly. the "grind" for mounts or anything in gw2 is laughable... especially if you played mmorpgs from the early 2000's / late 90's, nothing was handed out like candy, you had to work for it (or be incredibly rich -- which you also had to work for) and it was rewarding if you finished.

    so the "grind" in gw2 is fine. it's reasonable and it's not harsh compared to the grind of MMORPGs of the past (which is understandable as life/work/student/family/etc. demands have increased since the last decade, so people have generally less time to focus on many aspects in their daily life)

    "grinding" is an inherent part of MMORPGs -- being able to unlock and clear all content within the hour is what makes people bored and stop playing an MMORPG because there's nothing to do. "grinding" in MMORPGs is also why Shooters, MOBAs and BRs, games that are easy to pickup and put down frequently, are popular with the younger generation of gamers (who are generally much more impatient) or people who have little time (because of family/work) since they are all games where there's no grinding at all and you start at a level playing field with everyone at every match/game -- instant gratification at the cost of meaningful persistence/progression.

  • Teratus.2859Teratus.2859 Member ✭✭✭✭

    I'm struggling to see your point here OP..

    Farming the EXP to fill the mastery bar was easily one of the easiest parts of this skimmer collection, specially for those of us who struggled to complete it due to the massive number of bugs that constantly screwed up our progress.
    Almost every core world event and NPC I had to interact with was bugged.. I had to group up and swap maps over and over again to get past some of them.. and after all that I had to beat the race without the diving skill because the adventure too was bugged.
    Once all that was done getting the EXP was almost effortless, just ran events and metas in PoF and LW4 maps.. it was that easy.

    Honestly the only major criticism I have about unlocking some mounts/abilities is when Anet impose mandatory waiting times to slow down my progress.
    The Skyscale has by far been the most annoying one because of this, and while I appreciate that it has been improved over time and I get what Anet were trying to do by making it the way they did, it doesn't help those of us who were forced to wait so long to get that collection done because of those stupid and arguably unnecessary time gates.. it's just a game after all, just let us play it lol.

  • Redfeather.6401Redfeather.6401 Member ✭✭✭
    edited September 6, 2020

    It can feel like a gimmick of the quarter treadmill with a tiresome grind gating each new addition.
    I might get the griffon, but probably not because I think it costs 250g as well as the other things. I definitely won't get the rollerbeetle and skyscale. And that wvw one costs 250g to unlock the xp bar too.

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  • Goettel.4389Goettel.4389 Member ✭✭✭✭

    I still need to finish the Skyscale because I hate collections, but I don't want it easy mode after so many have done it the hard way.
    So it's fine as-is IMO.

  • @Goettel.4389 said:
    I still need to finish the Skyscale because I hate collections, but I don't want it easy mode after so many have done it the hard way.
    So it's fine as-is IMO.

    I am not the biggest fan of them either but there are enough people in game to help you out if you ask in map chat. There are also plenty of helpful guides if you get stuck somewhere.

  • Goettel.4389Goettel.4389 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 6, 2020

    @Nubarus.9268 said:

    I am not the biggest fan of them either but there are enough people in game to help you out if you ask in map chat. There are also plenty of helpful guides if you get stuck > somewhere.

    Exactly. And having used the rental one, I found I much prefer my griffon anyway.

  • @Goettel.4389 said:

    @Nubarus.9268 said:

    I am not the biggest fan of them either but there are enough people in game to help you out if you ask in map chat. There are also plenty of helpful guides if you get stuck > somewhere.

    Exactly. And having used the rental one, I found I much prefer my griffon anyway.

    I like them both and combined use via the Crystal Champion skills they extend each others abilities very well. I use the Skyscale to gain extra height, dismount while airborn, deploy glider and mount my Griffon so I have more altitude to use the dive.

  • Atomos.7593Atomos.7593 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Goettel.4389 said:
    I still need to finish the Skyscale because I hate collections, but I don't want it easy mode after so many have done it the hard way.
    So it's fine as-is IMO.

    Yeah, I don't think changing it now would be good. It's not hard. The only slightly challenging part I found was the fight with the 4 djinns, but even that's not that tough if you separate the djinns in the hallways and rooms and have someone kite while the others take down the other djinns. If anything, I found the fight with the legendary corrupted facet to unlock the griffon more difficult.

  • That 2 million xp went by so quick. Took me about 30 minutes, killing lots of yellow mobs and doing bounties

  • @Redfeather.6401 said:
    It can feel like a gimmick of the quarter treadmill with a tiresome grind gating each new addition.
    I might get the griffon, but probably not because I think it costs 250g as well as the other things. I definitely won't get the rollerbeetle and skyscale. And that wvw one costs 250g to unlock the xp bar too.

    Although, the Griffon does cost 250G, it is in 25G increments, so you can take your time advancing.
    The Warclaw costs only 8G to unlock. You are thinking of the in-game special Warclaw skin, obtainable for 200G. Cool, but not necessary to obtain/use the Warclaw.

  • coso.9173coso.9173 Member ✭✭✭✭

    i mean it''s how GW2 adds content. with a lot of grinding.
    but at least we get to choose on how to earn that exp.
    I'm okay with collections when it has a story to it, like this one.

  • Obtena.7952Obtena.7952 Member ✭✭✭✭

    Grinding in this game is like saying it's hard to blink.

    If you're on a highway and roadrunner goes "beep beep"
    Just step aside or you might end up in a heap

  • I have all the mounts except the Warclaw. The only mount I found to be grindy was the Skyscale. The others I finished really quick.

    As for reducing the grind, and I feel sure you are on about the Skyscale, I would have to vote no. Yes, it took me 2 weeks and I took advantage of the game provided shortcuts and had not unlocked Bjora Marches or the Griffon yet. After finally getting the Skyscale and unlocking all the masteries for it, I can say the effort is most definitely worth it. This can be seen in just how many players have their Skyscale.

    People also complain about how grindy the Roller Beetle is. Really? The collections to get any other mount in this game pales in comparison to Skyscale.

    Again, I vote NO on reducing the grind for acquiring any mount.

  • Algreg.3629Algreg.3629 Member ✭✭✭

    there are quite some hoops to jump through when it comes to mount unlocking, but the xp??? Come on....

  • Hannelore.8153Hannelore.8153 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 6, 2020

    Well players spent years insisting that they only wanted horizontal progression. With no level cap raise and no additional gear tiers beyond extra Legendary-quality equipment which isn't any better than Ascended, this was the only way the devs were left to add any kind of progression to the game; excessive horizontal grinds for mostly optional stuff.

    The most we've received for vertical progression was four-stat gears and Elite specs.

    The sad part is, it wasn't neccessary. Vertical progression in other games is bad because they lack features like downscaling. In GW, it probably would've worked because for example a level cap raise wouldn't just leave lv80 players behind.

    But there was no foresight for how such a system would work for GW franchise, so instead we have shiny carrot chasing.

    Its always been the weakness of this game that the devs always tried to be original, but didn't know when to say "lets just go with what works". They deviate from established systems at every oppertunity, even when its probably not a good idea.

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  • @Trise.2865 said:
    You probably don't remember, but in the years since Path of Fire, there was a push on the forums to "make content mean something". tl;dr: They wanted the various skills learned and unlocks achieved to be attached to questing, have their own stories, etc., etc. to make better use of the Mastery systems and drive engagement in expansion content. Folks were unhappy that their skills and abilities just happened, with no cause or reason.

    This is the result.

    Yeah give the vocal minority everything they want and screw everyone else is the GW2 moto.

  • @Hannelore.8153 said:
    Well players spent years insisting that they only wanted horizontal progression. With no level cap raise and no additional gear tiers beyond extra Legendary-quality equipment which isn't any better than Ascended, this was the only way the devs were left to add any kind of progression to the game; excessive horizontal grinds for mostly optional stuff.

    The most we've received for vertical progression was four-stat gears and Elite specs.

    The sad part is, it wasn't neccessary. Vertical progression in other games is bad because they lack features like downscaling. In GW, it probably would've worked because for example a level cap raise wouldn't just leave lv80 players behind.

    But there was no foresight for how such a system would work for GW franchise, so instead we have shiny carrot chasing.

    Its always been the weakness of this game that the devs always tried to be original, but didn't know when to say "lets just go with what works". They deviate from established systems at every oppertunity, even when its probably not a good idea.

    Your post really speaks to me and I think that is how i see the game too.

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  • otto.5684otto.5684 Member ✭✭✭✭

    I do not do collections. Last mount I got with the jackal. I will never get the other ones. Also, there is a lot of story that I have not and will not play. Some of it is required for collections. That’s hours of kitten boring bull kitten.

  • I for one like it when I can work for something that actually means something.
    Grinding for Armour skins gets boring after a while.

  • Dante.1508Dante.1508 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Trise.2865 said:
    You probably don't remember, but in the years since Path of Fire, there was a push on the forums to "make content mean something". tl;dr: They wanted the various skills learned and unlocks achieved to be attached to questing, have their own stories, etc., etc. to make better use of the Mastery systems and drive engagement in expansion content. Folks were unhappy that their skills and abilities just happened, with no cause or reason.

    This is the result.

    Tedious fetch quests does not equal interesting content, just saying. For me tyria was fine i still play there 8 years later.. Not all of us are content locusts.

  • I don't think any of the original 4 mounts are grindy. I just got them all in the past couple weeks as I went through the PoF story. Also the PoF masteries seem a lot less grindy than the HoT masteries (which I have yet to complete), although I am not sure why.

    I'm currently in the middle of my Griffon mount quest. I just finished getting all the runes that require group events, etc. It was a little tedious, but is very different from how I usually play (mainly casual map exploration and story completion), but I didn't mind the change of pace. It was actually kind of fun to camp out with others trying to do the quest and pinging the map for other helpful players. Now I can go back to my chill style with the griffon egg hunt. Biggest problem for me is the the 250g I will need. But I am just taking it slow, selling mats, etc. I guess I don't expect the get the mount right now....I really don't want to burn myself out playing a game although I can't wait to "fly". The important point being that I don't need to do any of this to progress with the game, it is just optional because I want it.

    There seems to be 2 complaints in the community: that GW2 lacks content or that some things take too long and are too hard to unlock. I guess it is just one more paradox to add to our existence. After all, long achievements are longer game-play time, are they not?

    The time-gating thing I don't care about much, but that is most likely because it is easier for me to play an hour or two every day rather than 6+ hours a couple days a week. I could see how this may be frustrating for others with different gaming schedules though. A lot of the time-gating seems that it can be bypassed buy buying related items (E.g., food, grow lamp off the TP for the skyscale) which more 'hardcore' players are maybe more likely to have the gold for? I also think these kinds of daily time gated items are a great economic factor to help low playtime players (like me) make some gold on the TP by spending an hour or so crafting or collecting such time gated items. That's my hope anyway. But maybe I am even too causal for this, because it hasn't worked so well so far. But honestly, I never really understood the reason to rush through a game to get something. The whole point of a game is to enjoy the time your playing it. I like that their are varied levels of difficulty for achievements that I need to mix up my play style a bit more. I know once I get my griffon that it took coordination with other players, a scavenger hunt, and collecting funds. I know it required a bit of work, and in the end that is kinda what makes the mount valuable imho.

    So, basically, I like the "grinding" for the mounts and I am sure I am not the only one. I am of course down with more interesting and engaging story telling with the collections, even though the current ones aren't awful.

  • Naxos.2503Naxos.2503 Member ✭✭✭✭

    It -is- grindy. Until you realize just how Massive the advantage for having mounts actually is. It's grindy because if it wasn't, mounts would trivialize a lot of things. Looking at you Skyscale.

  • Nubarus.9268Nubarus.9268 Member ✭✭
    edited September 7, 2020

    @KAipurge.2147 said:
    I have been an avid Guild wars player since guild wars 1. Over time the mount unlocking in this game has become worse and worse to the point where even just unlocking the new mastery for one of the oldest mounts in the game has become a grind with the XP requirement. The world trek-ing the figure out where the clues lead was enough but tacking the extra XP requirement after all of that is just too much. I could understand if all the mounts were always of use but so many replace others making them useless that making such a grind for a mount that would be useless after another one releases that does its job better makes no sense to me. There are MMO players from Super grindy MMO's like WoW and BDO even saying that they would rather do crazy grindy things in those games than deal with the way guild wars 2 handles mount grinding.

    And I know what people will say to this already. They will make the same tired excuses for why Anet decided to handle mount unlocks such as Griffon, Rollerbeetle, SKyscale, and even the new MASTERY(which isn't even a new mount)for the skimmer. I guarantee the next expansion will have a new mount that makes all those other listed ones that you spent all your time grinding for obsolete.

    and then there are those that have them saying that you don't need them whilst they fly away leaving you behind in map runs because the Original 4 mounts cant keep up with the newer ones thus the game tries to force you into participating in the long boring several day time gated rng based grind for the newer mounts.

    I do not agree with a single thing you wrote here. Also, so far not a single mount has made another mount obsolete either, they all compliment each other in one way or another. Personally I am very happy that they simply added a feature to a water mount to make it more useful than just being able to travel easier over certain fluids. This is much more useful than adding a dedicated underwater mount so that you have to upgrade 2 mounts to max tier that you barely use as it is. If 2 million xp is a grind for you I think it's time to upgrade your playing skills instead of writing long posts on the forum.

  • @KAipurge.2147 said:
    ... and then there are those that have them saying that you don't need them whilst they fly away leaving you behind in map runs because the Original 4 mounts cant keep up with the newer ones thus the game tries to force you into participating in the long boring several day time gated rng based grind for the newer mounts.

    Have to say, this particular part isn't true for me. I've got the four basic mounts and the warclaw. Never bothered with the other ones and haven't ever missed them. The only time I notice the griffon being faster than me is when I'm doing daily bounties on PoF maps. While they do get to the bounties quicker, I also get there in plenty of time to join in. So my mounts don't feel obsolete at all and I feel no pressure to get the grindy ones I haven't bothered with.

  • Vavume.8065Vavume.8065 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @KAipurge.2147 said:
    There are MMO players from Super grindy MMO's like WoW and BDO even saying that they would rather do crazy grindy things in those games than deal with the way guild wars 2 handles mount grinding.

    GW2 is far more grindy than WoW, back in the day I was the first person on my server to become High Warlord and the first to get "The insane" titles in WoW, even putting both those grinds together just pales in comparison to the grind for Diamond legend here.

  • Jagblade.4627Jagblade.4627 Member ✭✭✭

    My only complaint and request is that they do not tie any more masteries, mounts, or other new content to old core content and events that have been reported / known to be broken, bugged, and subsequently ignored since 2012. I'm looking at you Moshpoipoi village event.

  • Frostfang.5109Frostfang.5109 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 9, 2020

    It took me 45 mins to get that XP in Dragonfall with a bunch of boosters.

  • Karaha.3290Karaha.3290 Member ✭✭✭

    @KAipurge.2147 said:
    Over time the mount unlocking in this game has become worse and worse to the point where even just unlocking the new mastery for one of the oldest mounts in the game has become a grind with the XP requirement. The world trek-ing the figure out where the clues lead was enough but tacking the extra XP requirement after all of that is just too much.

    What are you talking about? Masteries always needed exp, that's nothing new.

    I could understand if all the mounts were always of use but so many replace others making them useless that making such a grind for a mount that would be useless after another one releases that does its job better makes no sense to me.

    There is not a single mount in this game replacing another one. Again, what are you talking about?
    And what "grind" are you talking about?

  • Tiilimon.6094Tiilimon.6094 Member ✭✭✭

    I think some people like to complain about these grinds without even trying.

  • @Noa.7490 said:
    Some people here seem to forget that not everyone can sink hours upon hours each day. For those people, grinding to get 250 resources can get really tedious, not to mention boring. Do you remember when we got the raptor in a snap because, hey, he likes you, keep it? Pepperidge Farm remembers.

    So you just want to get everything in a snap. Then what is the point of playing anyway. To obtain the special mounts I did not spend hours upon hours each day at all. I even did my Skyscale collection during the 3 day time gated feeding and that didn't really bother me that much. You know what makes people loose interest in games......if you get to the end in a snap without real effort or some level of dedication.

  • Klypto.1703Klypto.1703 Member ✭✭✭

    @Nubarus.9268 said:

    @Noa.7490 said:
    Some people here seem to forget that not everyone can sink hours upon hours each day. For those people, grinding to get 250 resources can get really tedious, not to mention boring. Do you remember when we got the raptor in a snap because, hey, he likes you, keep it? Pepperidge Farm remembers.

    So you just want to get everything in a snap. Then what is the point of playing anyway. To obtain the special mounts I did not spend hours upon hours each day at all. I even did my Skyscale collection during the 3 day time gated feeding and that didn't really bother me that much. You know what makes people loose interest in games......if you get to the end in a snap without real effort or some level of dedication.

    Reminds me how effortless it was for me to get all those collection currencies for the Skyscale. However a lot of players do not understand the reasons behind Anet's methods of heart vendors and why their character slots seldom are on sale. Its basically a cheap investment you can build up over time that allows it to become easier to get things done. So when I was doing those Skyscale collection requirements take me anywhere from 30-60 minutes each day doing a specific map to get all 250 from that map. Its why there are somewhat boring or dumb things like throwing a rock at some target dummies or mount stomping some ambient npcs and after a minute of doing it you get rewarded with like 5-10 of an item.

    So to me this is in no way a grind game I've played those where a year was a good turn around time for one character to reach max level or for instance a version of a guild hall taking a large group of player 3-5 years to complete one. Now those are actual grinds but its basically Anet rewards you with character slots in Living World maps in ways most people don't even see because their whole aspect depends on a large group of players being herded around like blind sheep and if they don't find a herd then they consider it to be dead content. Although this investment method is basically how they will allow you to bypass some time gates based on how much you have supported the game. However my gripe with Anet is how they limit individual progress in other parts of the game just to please people who either are only playing this game up until one of their friends decides to quit and then they all go so they have made the choice to remove aspects from people who support this game for those who do not.

  • ShadowCatz.8437ShadowCatz.8437 Member ✭✭✭
    edited September 8, 2020

    @Ototo.3214 said:
    Wait what grind? I don't recall any of the mounts in PoF being that difficult to earn exp for, and PoF mastery points were stupid easy to accumulate compared to HoT at its launch. Dear Dwayna, just because they can't have it "rite nao" people flip out. The only mounts I'd even consider "kinda hard to get" are the 2 flying mounts, and technically neither of which are actually required for anything.

    @KAipurge.2147
    On top of that while people are working to unlock mount they actually can borrow mounts that are on maps. Don't you have Skyscale yet, but are on Dragonfall map, then it is possible use Springer to get up where those Skyscale have nests and borrow one (look for mount symbol on map). The only negative is that you can not jump off Skyscale (if mount would be in danger with very low HP and if you happens to have unlocked Mastery Crystal Champion- which is Mastery for all mounts that add special features like Bond of Faith - shared Mastery like these can not be used on borrowed mounts). All in all Skyscale is the one that takes time and can be frustrating, but it also one mount that can best use those Motes in air to gain altitude in air to get higher or travel long path between two vista in Icebrood maps, so Skyscale have it uses. With added feature from shared mount mastery to go invisible it can also avoid a bit of getting targeted in air (important in Icebrood maps), the same goes for all other mount where getting in combat can be tricky to summon a mount when you are on ground.

    Doing map completion is much faster after you have unlocked all mounts. Switch between Beetle for places where there are flat land or smaller water patches to cross and use Griffon to jump or fly where there is not enough elevation to get higher. Use Skyscale or Springer (use Bond of Faith to jump - glide and then change into Griffon or use Griffon direct after jump) to get up in air and change to Griffon. In short combination of different mounts offer much more mobility and each abilities (mount skills) do also add features that can be combined with other skills from your character. Skyscales fire AoE can be used to give Might with a blaster or a fire aura.

    All PoF maps also have their main event chain like in Sandswept Island (LW4) where there is people doing bounties or farming nodes. Skyscale have plenty of Motes to farm in sky. Dragonfall which is the starting point for Skyscale have the big fight with Kralkatorrik and the event chain up to that event. Getting XP isn't any problem as long you rotate maps that have Mastery Insights in the same colour as the Mastery you try to get XP for. There are also some small treats that can bought that give each mount an increase in XP from mount vendor (you need to activate mount when you consume this).

    As mounts are account bound you only have to do this once. As for future expansion with water theme, ANet seem to have found out that Skimmer (an existing mount) is better to use then to create a new mount as that would also increase the number of key binds you would have to have ready access if you are to switch mount while in air, water or land. Too many mounts would create problems with how key binding works as it is not unlimited space for controlling any mount on key boards or through a game pad.

    We don't know if you even have basic gliding unlocked, Bouncing Mushroom etc from HoT as those Mastery do also get a new layer with mounts. With Bouncing Mushrooms you can jump up and enable gliding (to stay in air) and then flying mounts or directly summon a mount if you are fast enough. Same in DWC maps where you use special portals where you get dropped down in a parachute. Here it is worth remember that if you have Gliding with dodge skill that makes you invisible, then it can be smart to wait to summon mount (this is to avoid getting target in air) and when on mount that you can use evade (later you can use invisible on mount when you have unlocked that), so you have actually two invisible/stealth: one from Gliding and one from being on a mount (and Bond of Faith make it possible to change between being on mount and gliding or summon another mount).

    (A) Mount do have a very special place in this game and changes fundamentally how things work vs only land based (w/o mount mobility from teleport skills or from boons like swiftness and superspeed (in most cases SS is often shorter then swiftness in duration). Map completion is now much faster then when I did it first time (before mounts did exist) without mounts. All your character share Mastery, so you are not bound or forced to do this more then once for each account.

    (B) The way to get a mount might feel long, but the four basic mounts are rather fast: Jackal give short ranged teleports that can be used in air, above water (short distance) or land - Springer to get you up and combo with Bond of Faith and you reach most places where you would need a Skyscale, and its AoE knock down is always good way to start any attack - Raptor can cross gaps, haven't used it much while grinding mounts, but is very good to keep up with groups that still haven't Griffon or Beetle - and Skimmer is more then a water creature, it can cross sand sinks, poison water, acid etc. It is rather fast land based way to travel, if you don't want to use swiftness all the time. The only annoying feature is its movement that can make it hard to control in a straight line while driving forward. With Colobri skin it looks a bit realistic, but still annoying when one try to do adventures or need to hit exact to rez some one.

    (C) XP is no problem to gain as long you keep to those maps that have the right colour for mastery. PoF maps are still very active (when there isn't too much lag and trouble from servers) and they have good rewards that get your Karma and Gold among other.

    (D) After having posted this I read @Klypto.1703 post and want to add that you can use Lounge for sPvP (panel) and get back where you where or WvW panel where you use Leave wvw (small arrow in right lower corner), combine this with Portal Scrolls you buy from vendors (you can use it directly from Inventory in WvW and I would expect the same in sPvP lounge) and you will have the same effect as leaving a character on maps. Main difference with "go back" is that you will be at the place you left, while Portal Scroll will teleport you to WP for that map. If you bought "Lily of the Elone pass" (can be bought in game as an upgrade for Gems with Deluxe package, if you haven't bought the Deluxe version) then you have also the opportunity to get to centre of PoF maps (portal scrolls are most focused on South parts of PoF maps). Get a Tome to collect all PoF scrolls to save some inventory space.

    https://wiki.guildwars2.com/wiki/Invitation_to_"Lily_of_the_Elon" (Places you in the centre of PoF maps with access to all service incl bank and vendors - upgrades in gems store are sometimes on sale, so it can be smart to keep an eye for this close to Christmas where next major sale should happen)

    https://wiki.guildwars2.com/wiki/Portal_Scroll