I rolled a toon on a roleplay server and to be honest I'm not sure roleplay is for me. I enjoy seeing it but I'm rubbish at it myself. Also it's a very popular server and I find I'm having game-hang issues. I was wondering if this server, also eu as I'm uk, is maybe a little less overpopulated and therefore less likely to hang?
Also wondering: as I'm going to start fresh and roll only 2 toons, which 2 range classes would you recommend with which 2 crafting professions? I want to be as self-sufficient as possible but have just 2 toons, probably elf and hobbit.
Gilrain is still considered a small server, though our numbers have grown a lot since F2P and are still growing everyday. I'm no computer expert but if you're hanging a lot it might also have to do with the state of your connection at that moment and maybe your computer itself too, I don't know.
About classes. You asked explicitly for range classes so that would be Rune-Keeper (High damage/healer, Light armour), who uses runes to zap/burn/freeze their enemies and can also take the now very nice job as a healer. Hunter (High damage, medium armour) which is focused on nuking (single-target DPS), with a couple of Crowd Control skills and very high mobility through travel skills. Minstrel (high damage/healing, light armour) is considered the "main" healer for small grouping instances (not raids) but can be a very good DPS'er from distance using balads, cries and coda's. Lore-Master (High damage/Support, Light armour) using Crowd Control and his beast to put targets down before they're able to reach you. I could put Warden down here too, but that class is still more focused on Melee/Tanking, although they have a viable ranged stance now.
I'd say Hunter is best choice if you just want high damage till the end, Rune-Keeper/Minstrel if you want to be able to take other spots in groups later on too and Lore-Master if you like to support your fellows.
As for crafting, if you're focusing on end-game content you won't really be needing a Explorer, if you aren't focusing on end-game content I'd pick a Explorer for sure, they make Light/Medium armour, which all of the above classes are and they can pick up wood+ore which is nice for storage. Second craft I'd pick Tinker so you can make your own Jewellry. With this combination of crafts you can make your own gear entirely besides the weapon and pocket item (which is made by Scholars).