I hit 60 today and in the last zone no less. I cannot remember the last time I leveled to max and required to do all the content. I should mention I did a lot of skirmishes in the lower levels and some foundry missions from time to time.
The picture is from the web portal to the game. Once you hit 60, the “end game” opens up and it’s gated with a GearScore (yes, that’s the name). It’s a score that adds your defense and offense together. When I hit 60, I didn’t have anywhere near enough GS to enter any top tier dungeon. So I did what anyone would do, I went shopping!
Every purple item you see on my character was bought from the auction house. Total cost was a bit under 100K Astral Diamonds. Prices are all over the place too. I got a helm for 9K but there were some for 200K up as well, with marginally better stats. Now my gear score is ~7700 and I can access all but 5 dungeons. A few more dungeon delves and I hope to gear up further.
Leveling a Cleric is odd. You are not good at dealing damage and healing can be confusing since it’s mostly over time. The 40s were tough in that I couldn’t damage or heal really well, so I was just running around avoiding attacks. At level 50, I got Astral Shield. This is an AE shield that reduces damage by what seems 50% AND gives you regeneration. I won’t say it’s impossible to die, since I managed a few times, but it makes a whole lot of content trivial.
I did like the latter zones as more and more enemies have AE attacks and more of them group together. One “pack” had a giant and 4 elementals. Each has a massive AE attack, some with knockback. Bad timing and you could get hit in the air for a few shots, land then get smacked with lava death. It was like being stun-locked in PvP. Tons of fun though!
For those that are wondering about the F2P portion, I can say that I leveled to 60 without spending a dime. I could have mind you, for mounts and respecs and all that stuff. The world is so instanced though, that a 110% mount makes all of 30 seconds of difference on any given map. They look pretty, granted.
Will I spend money? Yes. A respec is coming and once the new content comes out I’ll drop some for that as well.