Feb 272010

For the exploration of Skyward Reach, my long time friend and native Tyrian, Erolin is joining me. This area has a lot of history, and it leads to many other areas within the Crystal Desert.

When arriving here for the first time, my eyes were drawn to a large inaccessible area with a strange platform and stones with glowing runes. Later on after completing the three desert missions, I found out that this is your final ascension challenge in Tyria. Coming from Cantha, I had already gained the gods favor and could access The Mists, by becoming closer to the stars in Nahpui Quarter. However I believe it is much more challenging to achieve ascension in Tyria, and it’s easy for me to understand why so many have died trying to ascend.

From here Augury Rock is visible on the horizon. As we looked back, Erolin and I discussed the three missions we had to do in order to ascend in the desert.

In Dunes of Despair, we had to help the Ghostly Hero reclaim the Temple of Ascension by defeating many foes and making sure he is not defeated. While Thirsty River required that we annihilated six groups that are accompanied by an enemy priest and a boss. Finally in Elona Reach, we helped the Ghostly Hero perform a ritual by taking Vision Crystals from enemies and bringing them to him.

After completing the three missions and the final challenge against my Doppleganger, I was granted access to an outpost that is a gateway into Dragon’s Lair (which is contained in a single grain of sand). Home to the mightiest of all dragons I have met so far: Glint! She was the gods first creation on Tyria, and leader of the Forgotten. If that was not impressive enough, she is also an oracle and explained the Flameseeker Prophecies to me.

The griffons trembled when Erolin approached them. After slaying them I asked my monk friend what they did to frighten them so much, and Erolin explained to me that a long time ago that many monks slaughtered griffions in the Crystal Desert to “farm loot”.

I spotted some ruins in the distance and activated a teleporter so I could get a closer look.

These are the ruins of the houses that people lived in when they moved to the Crystal Desert in hopes of uncovering the secrets of Ascending long ago.

Here is another bleached bone with a journal entry found on it:

The creatures are coming. I hear the clicking of their claws drawing nearer in the darkness. It’s all I can do to keep from screaming and alerting them to my location. I don’t know why I continue to write… I suppose I’m comforted by the thought that someone, someday, might tell my family what finally became of me. I’m sorry, mother. I should have listened to you.”

We spoke to Sariss Yassith for awhile, but he(?) did not have much to say to us.

The path leading to The Scar is littered with the remains of Margonite ships.

Here are the remains of the ancient giants I spoke of in my journal entry of Dragon’s Gullet. I wish I could have seen this creature in life! It must have been quite a sight to behold.

Walking through the desert looking out for patrolling Hydras, we found a large centaur population near Destiny’s Gorge.

After clearing the area near the centaurs, I was able to inspect these weird ramps up close. However they are inscribed with runes that I am unfamiliar with. Erolin tried to decipher what they meant, but she was unable to do so. I speculated that perhaps the Elonians or perhaps even the centaurs used them in a ritual.

On our way exploring we found the pathway that leads into Diviner’s Ascent.

Not far from the exit to Diviner’s Ascent, we also found the way into Salt Flats.

After completing exploration of Skyward Reach and counting up our spoils, Erolin asked me why I got six golden items and she didn’t get any! I didn’t have a good answer for her, I just suggested that the gods work in mysterious ways.

Prized spoils: Six golden items, one monk tome, and one elementalist tome
Outposts: Augury Rock, Destiny’s Gorge
Exits: Vulture Drifts, The Arid Sea, The Scar, Salt Flats, Diviner’s Ascent
Friends: Erolin