Since this kind of thread keeps reappearing, I figured I’d throw together something that might be stickied to answer this question each time it comes up.
Where did the vendor go that allowed me to buy a Gift of Battle for 500 Badges of Honor?
It was removed from the game, the only way to obtain a Gift of Battle is now is to complete the Gift of Battle Reward Track.
Why did anet make this change?
They haven’t said for sure. Conjecture varies, but some think it’s to make legendaries more… legendary and requiring mastery across game modes. Some have speculated it was a way to encourage people to play wvw.
It may have always been their intention to have it harder to acquire from the beginning and never had a meaningful way to do it, and the vendor was always a temporary solution to solving the problem; allowing people to obtain a legendary.
How long does it take to finish the track?
It requires 20,000 reward points to finish any wvw reward track. The maximum acquisition rate is 195 points every 5 minutes at maximum participation, and would take slightly over 8.5 hours to complete while maintaining maximum participation.
This can be sped up by using an experience booster (50% gain) and Guild WvW Reward Track Boost (3-10% increase). With these 60% increases, at maximum participation it would take just shy of 5.5 hours to complete the track.
Increasing participation requires you to… do stuff in wvw. If there is a commander tag on the Eternal Battlegrounds or your server’s borderlands, following them will usually provide some quick participation gains, depending on the quality of the commander and zerg and the opponent you’re facing.
Some commanders will gladly share squad participation (if you ask for it) with scouts and roamers. If you offer to watch over an important objective (and call out enemy activities nearby!), most commanders will gladly share participation with you. This is a vital role while defending any of the 3 keeps in your home borderlands.
There are 4 wvw dailies, 2 rare and 2 exotic chests. The rare chests give 250 points each, the exotics 500 points each. Only doing dailies would take 14 days to complete the track, not counting the points you acquire actually doing the dailies.
Why’s it take so long?
That’s a matter of perspective, world competition and time-gated prerequisites already take a long time (ever make Astralaria?), with many taking far longer than the reward track.
So are all my badges of honor worthless now?
No, there’s still lots of useful things you can buy with them.
- Badges of Tribute are required to level scribing and sell well on the trading post.
- Cultural armor is available for a combination of badges and coins that are cheaper than just coins. Completing the cultural armor collection grants a mastery point.
- Exotic armors and weapons can be acquired for various (but not all) stat types.
- Some Laurel items are cheaper with Badges + Laurels.
Ugh, I hate wvw
Many who enjoy wvw don’t enjoy all the pve activities required to obtain a legendary and still “suffer” through them, in particular map competition. If you go into it with the mindset that you hate it, you will hate it. If you go in with an open mindset you might find you enjoy aspects of wvw. Give it a shot, you might like it.
One other thing to consider is that it’s efficient to obtain karma in wvw (karma training is a derogatory term from more battle-oriented wvw players), and you need a lot of karma for legendaries. I have watched pve players have trouble obtaining the required karma required, take advantage of it while you’re here.
(edited by Hesacon.8735)