After a lot of screwing around, and buying a full account because I can easily afford it, I’ve settled on a Sylvari Elementalist, Asura Revenant, and a Human Ranger. They’re all at level 19.
The Ranger is definitely the easiest to play. I’ve stuck with ax/dagger for ranged and tight spaces and sword/horn for melee that allows for all that flipping around without sending me into danger. If I have a good bow I’ll use that and bear tank because fuck the hardcores, I’ll play any damned way I want. So far the drake and spider seem to be the best for combat but I run with the dog because it looks like Scooby Do. No faceplants yet.
The Revenant has a lot of interesting combat mechanics, but with all the hopping around it is crazy easy to draw aggro you can’t really handle. This has caused me to faceplant once. I’m pretty unimpressed with the legendary figures so far and have stuck with the dwarf. Mace/sword because the mobs can’t seem to walk out of the aoe of the mace. But I prefer ranged combat so I might drop this class for later playing and focus on the other two. Or go back to the Engineer for a second alt.
I finally got a handle on the Elementalist. Drop a lot of fire and dodge. Preferably while dropping more fire, so the staff is a must. I have faceplanted a few times in crowded areas because they don’t give you a lot of room to move without drawing aggro. While they can drop trash mobs quickly, the fast respawns coupled with the durability of veteran and boss enemies means you can get hit from behind at the worst times.
Other things I’ve learned: Hunting hero points can get you up a few levels just by opening waypoints and discovering neighborhoods. Grabbing the easy vistas and p.o.i. as you do it also helps. And it’s better to save the hero points for what you’re focusing on than try to get everything filled as you level.