Meeting the Challenge
When you begin Guild Wars, a limited number of missions await you. As you complete them, others will become available. The map displays available missions and also tells you which missions you've already completed. Missions are the primary vehicle for advancing the Roleplaying story in Guild Wars and they offer a lot of XP to go along with detailed and dramatic cinematic cut scenes that illustrate the epic nature of the game.
In order to successfully complete a mission or secondary objective, you must meet its goals before you end your Guild Wars session. You can complete missions at will, so feel free to come back and complete objectives later, if you wish. You will know for certain that a mission has been completed when the mission shield icon appears onscreen with a written summary of the experience you have earned.
While in towns or adventuring areas, you can take on quests to earn experience and other rewards. Quests are similar to missions in that you are provided with a set of objectives and a defined goal. Unlike missions, quests are optional and not necessary to advance the core storyline. Heroes receive quests from "quest-giver" NPCs—look for such characters with an exclamation point floating above their heads. The exclamation means that the particular NPC either has a new quest to offer or has information critical to your current quest.
Quests (and missions, while you are attempting them) are clearly described in your Quest Log (press L to bring it up). To find the next objective on a given quest, simply highlight it in the log. The next objective will then appear as a green starburst icon on your compass (previously known as mini-map). If the starburst is out of range, a green arrow on you compass or world map points you in the right direction.