The Hunt for Red V
Reading the Daybreak forums for progression servers I came across an update to the class stats from the post beta information. This one had more respondants of people who (seemingly) actually participated. It is also a fun way to look at what people say versus what they do. They are still very similar. I am not going to break it down at all, but linking to them here. And stealing a class graph picture for fun.
So, basically, Mages are liars. I think we all knew that deep down. Due to the OPness of mages they are everywhere. The group that downed Nagafen was mostly mages. (Yes, Naggy is already dead.)
I finally did start my adventure on Ragefire, and did it by still not deciding what class I wanted to play. I quickly made several and started messing around early levels to see which fit. Wood Elf Druid made the most sense (due to my mostly solo-ish playstyle and desire to be wanted in group if/when I could) and as suspected that area was really busy. For fun I rolled a Gnome Shadowknight and Steamfont was also the busiest I have pretty much ever seen. Still, I did what I always do with my Gnome characters. I go hunting for Red V.
Braack was my EQ proper troll name but in my flurry of messing around with 6 characters I ran out of my standard names, so named my Gnome my Troll name. Not that I expect anyone to recognize me. Gnome Shadowknights weren’t possible in EQ classic (if I recall correctly?) so this is further proof that the progression server isn’t really class, you need Project 1999 for that.
Ak’Anon has a mechanical maintenance crew and the entire city has plenty of mechanical help. From Scrubbers to Sweepers to Guides you can’t walk very far without encountering a Mechanical friend. And like most technology, sometimes they go bad. When they do go bad the seem to congregate in the area where other ‘bad’ gnomes are, Necros and Shadowknights guildmasters. Those two groups live side by side. This is a great area to level as there are snakes, spiders, skeletons and rogue clockworks in abundance – and it is rarely overcamped. There is also a named that spawns (Red V) and when you kill him you get a box, that filled with 4 items (blackbox fragments) from the other clockworks makes a rusty box. This rusty box get’s turned into the GM of the Warriors (Malik) and you have a chance to get a really nice item. Also – while hunting down here, please remember to keep your scrap metal. You can turn that in accross the pond from the entrance to that area for faction, money, and more goods. I leveled to 5 in this space. Red V was camped by a cleric for a good while but he buffed me up (he was level 8, so they were very helpful) and let me cycle in for Red V now and again.
This reminded me of the good of grinding in an area. I didn’t have to read quest, run around, collect, run back, read quest.. I just stayed in an area and killed things. A lot of them. It’s a nice view.
There are a lot of “no drop” items that take up a lot of space if you aren’t careful so they are normally left on. After spending a couple hours in the same spot, doing the same thing, chatting with the dwarf I realized I was having a lot of fun. I didn’t need to be entertained or cut scened, just play, grind, xp, level, chat, and enjoy. There is often a Zen to the right level of grind.
This play session also reminded me of some of the great parts about EQ. First, is no instancing (or at least, no real instancing. I hear they have some server version in the starter areas due to the server being at cap, but I haven’t seen that in play).
The three biggest I was reminded of:
- Getting higher level buffs from higher level characters (my HP went up 30%, and AC up 15% from cleric buffs) and in most games they don’t want lower level characters having an ‘easier’ or ‘fun’ time leveling. In EQ, you could get great buffs that changed your power level. Nothing wrong with getting help from a veteran player.
- Your items are your items – and you can give them away when you are done with them. Even to a lower level character who would then become more powerful as a result. Character locked items is one of the bigger failings of modern day MMOs. Especially in PVE games.
- The Mob items are actually items. I spoke about this before and it is awesome. If the skeleton you are about to kill has a mace, or scythe in his hand(s) when you kill it is lootable. Such a small thing but very important for immersion.
What I wasn’t planning on is that I didn’t have the faction to turn in the quest. I didn’t quite realize how much SKs were hated by our close to kin Warrior brethren. I need to go grind faction to turn in the quest. Which means back to the mines, as the scrap metal quest is the only one nearby that gives Gemcutter faction. Looking at my items above all that armor was found on skeletons in the area, and raising 9 plat in a play session isn’t anything to be ashamed of. Solid haul.
I’m back and it’s fun. It’s really, really slow in comparison to what we are trained to like but it feels like a nice leisurely stroll into danger and death -instead of the normal sprint. How much endurance I have remains to be seen. I didn’t even really plan on playing the SK but once I got it in my head to complete the Red V quest I got into a zone. It is a quest an area I had done with all of my gnomes – even though the big winning item is the Bull Smasher – a small race only mace that is awesome. Even if you got that on your caster you could give it to your friend – or to one of your other characters. I also got a ton of bone chips which sells well to necros.
I went for maximum nostalgia on this one and really need to choose a character and class I plan on sticking to. Who knows, it might just end up being this guy.