To put is simply: Ardenweald is a recolored Val’sharah harassed by the Drust.
And this actually defines the whole leveling experience. You don’t actually get any majestic views of the Tall Tree except for when you arrive – you immediately plunge into groves, and immediattely attacked by twig rascals, soon enough replaced by the masked drust-sworn and actual drust by the end. That’s how you crawl.
The zone doesn’t let you to catch any breath – it’s a struggle until the end to fend off the constant attacks, and for this reason it felt quite monotonous. Little is explained about its people – there are four folks here, satyrs (as in mythology, not WoW devils), centaur-like and fairies; also a rare but super cool tree creatures stepping in right from Miyazaki’s or other Japanese cartoons. You get a vaguest description of population: technically some of them tend the spirits and some protect the lands, but this is as much as you can have. No details provided.
What makes Ardenweald lovable is actualy its characters. Each of them has a distinct personality, and you actually remember the names unlike the other zones. It’s a mere pleasure to deal with them and simply observe their people. That’s what can lure me to this Covenant big time: to evolve our bonds and friendships!
Ardenweald story ends in a big thing – spoilers aside, I couldn’t help crying my eyes out. Yet it’s kinda climactic, and the question seems to be resolved. What’s next if I join them? Killing more drust and pests? Oh, there will be restoration of the groves – that is my next big lure actually, I like when I can fix places and make them bloom.
I had many hopes with Ardenweald, and it did not exceed my expectations – in fact, it seemed a bit shallow. Of course if you’re a druid or a hunter, this is a sure Covenant to pick, but as for my main? I don’t know yet. I loved the fairies and the satyr folk and the characters most of all – I’d happily deal with them later. And I want to see the groves bloom! But their audition – both in visuals and in story – was too monotonous to my liking.
Points: 7/10. The choice of Covenant is still in question.