I know the forums are pretty much full of these guides, but i wanted to throw one here myself. I find myself always creating new characters so i think a got a pretty good hang
of the leveling mechanics and most optimal paths. So, here we go. And sorry for grammar.
NOTICE: if you have by any chance tomes of knowledge, boosters and event consumables,dont use them until later,we will get to that later.
So, after creating a new character just do the hearts and try to get as many waypoints as possible. Also do all events that you can, you will thank me later in "midd game".
You dont need much EXP for levels 1-20, so it should be pretty fast. Now every zone /map is separated into what i like to call sub-zones. These sub-zones kinda dictate which way you will be going when leveling, because of the level range. BUT be carefull, sometimes you end up in a wrong sub-zone when you are leaving your current zone, and altough PVE is not that hard,your progress will be slowed.(of course, that depends on the profession you pick and your skill level).
A perfect example of this sub-zone routine is in the Charr starting zone (PLAINS OF ASHFORD). To the north you will find a zone (dissea plateu) which has a level range from 15-25. (for best progress you want to be atleast level 15 when going there, if you want to go there). Now, there are 2 points of entry from plains of ashford. THE FIRST one is through the black citadel (near the auction house) and THE SECOND is between the FACULA CASTRUM and TOPPLED WALL. If you choose the ** first** route, you will end up in a sub-zone with quest and events for a level range of 15-17. HOWEVER if you use the second point of entry, you will end in a subzone with a level range between 22-25. I hope that you get it now. If we consider that you will be leaving the main area as a lvl 15-17 at best, you really dont want to go through the second point of entry. These sub-zone routines works on all zones below lvl 80.
So, to sum it up. Do hearts, personal story,do events (even repeat them if possible), get waypoints,choose your sub-zone acordingly(google them if you dont know where they are) and if you want, you can also collect vistas and points of interest, but that can be done later. If things go well, you should be level 30 without much problem.
With each level up, the required exp for the next level goes up. Meaning, that leveling early game, is faaar more faster then late game. Hey remember those boosters and tomes i talked about in the NOTICE? Yeah, thats why you dont want to use them early, its a waste. At around level 30 (or sooner) you start noticing that leveling isnt that much of a breeze anymore. The worst thing is, even though the EXP reward from hearts scales, you will need to do more and more of them, to a point where you cant really switch a sub-zone without being under-leveled or with slightly worse gears. Now you have 2 options:
-1. go to a different zone with appropriate level
At this point i like to stop doing my personal quests, i think about them as a lets say, worst case scenario, where your absuletly need the EXP.
At level 30, you will unlock your first dungeon, Ascalonian catacombs. Each instance gives about 70% of required EXP to level up. NEAT HUH?! Weeell not really, it all depends on how many people are playing, and what skill level they posses. Sometimes these dungeons can be a stroll through a park, sometimes, your personal nightmare. When i hit a wall of being under-leveled and dont want to go and fidget around the world to find a new optimal level path(BEAR IN MIND, this iseasier for me, because i have mounts. i dont envy you the travel if you dont have one) i go to dungeons. thank god that dungeons are not completely forgotten and high level players farm them. WIth a little luck you can do few of these dungeon instances which should get you to the level you need to switch between sub-zones. After that,countinue on doing hearts and events. I never do these however, if they are 2 levels higher then me.
IF you have bad luck, and cant find a competent group, or there are not many people playing, do your personal story. Trying to find someone to run dungeons with, can be time consuming and wastefull. Do these things until you are around level 50-60.
So the strategy is the same. Do the dungs if you feel you are underpowered. Do events,hearts,group events, whatever you like.
Now if you are level 50 and you have lots of EXP boosts and tomes of knowledge and what not, you can use them freely at this point. This will speed-up your leveling by a large margin and should completely nulify the need of running dungeons, due to being underleveled. If you dont have any boosters at all, no problem. Do the MIDD GAME strategy until lvl 60.
Now at level 60, the required EXP to level up is pretty high and can take you a lot of time if you are constantly dying, running around like a chicken and other shenanigans. The best way, in my expereince is to spam dungeons as much as possible. The dungeon EXP reward scales based on your level so you can do any of them that have a group already. IF there is no group present at all ( you unlucky soul), keep doing world completion BUT with the addition of any EXP boosts you should have saved for this particular point in the game AND creating a group in a dungeon you think is the most frequently visited. In my experience the most spammed dungeons are Citadel of Flame.Ascalonian Catacombs and sorrow embrace. REMEMBER, a dungeon instance gives roughly 70% of your EXP REQUIRED TO LEVEL UP. Thats a lot,thank god. The only difference between a new player and someone who has boosts is only time. It takes longer but the strategy is the same. At last 5-6 levels i only spam dungeons. No world completion,nothing, ONLY DUNGEONS. You can do the same, but you dont HAVE TO.
Yeah okay i know, its not much in-depth, it doesnt have any crazy mechanics but really. We all know that leveling in this game is pretty much trivial. When i reach level 80 i just rush to collect hero points for my elite-spec in either PoF or Heart of Thorns . You get 10 hero points for each hero point event. BUT, beware of spoilers. If you never played the game and dont want to get lost in the story, just do living world season 2 (if unlocked) then Heart of thorns(if unlocked) and then Pof(yeah, you guessed it,if unlocked) This is the order of the expansions. If you know the story already,just go ahead and go wherever you want though. I always do the first few personal story quests in these expansion, because they basically teleport you to the EXPANSION zone. Then i just rush to get hero points and then go back to the correct order of the expansions. Bear in mind, if you are new player, and you have PoF unlocked, try to get a mount as soon as possible. It will help you, like, A LOT!!!!. These are the PRE-ENDGAME things i like to do.
PVP- not recommended.
You can go to PVP if you are skilled or running a good pvp profesion (i am looking at you mesmer, staaaaaaare). However the only reason i would do PVP is for tomes of knowledge. I try to stay away from it when leveling.
Things to remember
-Try to get as much hero points as you can get prior to level 80. If you want an elite spec, you will need to unlock ALL TRAITS and ALL UTILITES.
-Dont use EXP boosts and tomes until later, when leveling gets slower.
-DUNGEONS, DUNGEONS, DUNGEONS.
-HAVE FUN! Honestly all this thrash talk from me is just a suggestion nothing more. I am sure there are many errors and i do hope that my fellow GW2 gamers will correct me, so check the comments!!!
-remember, it more enjoyable to level up with a friend. OR FIND A NEW ONE! (i alway did these things alone )
-try to figure out what build are you aiming for. Atleast know if you are gonna go condi or power. Using condi traits and utilities and running POWER equipment may slow down your progress and lower overall effectivnes in and out of dungeons.
THANK YOU ALL VERY MUCH.
Please correct me if possible and be free to add anything that can help other players in the future. Maybe i will do another leveling path in a year or 2