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All about news and updates of the (MMO)RPG games I play and general news that I deem important enough

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Haad-start started
13 September 2014
Posted in ArcheAge
I received an eMail late last night that the ArcheAge head-start had started. But by now I've lost all interest in the game already. A game that has great possibilities for the fantasy sandbox lover, but recent changes to the game made it less appealing for me. Not to mention that I'm playing EVE online right now, the king of the sandbox MMOs, and compared to EVE online no other sandbox MMO gives the features it has...

So what to do with the account I have for ArcheAge (along with Defiance and RIFT linked to it)? Right now I'm not sure. I have spent 135 for the game (and about 75 on the other 2) and my 6-month 'subscription' time will start running after the head-start is over. I'm not sure if I should keep the account and just let the time expire or if I should pass it on to someone who's interested in actually playing the game (for a small fee of course )...

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3-monitor setup #3
24 August 2014
Posted in ArcheAge
A 3-monitor setup is also supported by ArcheAge. And I have to say that ArcheAge supports the 3-monitor setup better than the games I tried so far. As I said before, the regular 3-monitor resolution is 5760x1080 and 4320x900. ArcheAge supports these 2 resolutions as well (though the triple 1440x900 resolution is not natively supported by most monitors and will give odd results), ArcheAge also supports a resolution of 3840x720

 photo ARCHEAGE2014-08-2208-34-42-10_zps43395ecd.jpg

 photo ARCHEAGE2014-08-2208-36-19-68_zpsb144bc39.jpg

I'm showing you both (triple HD) resolutions above, along with the info on GPU load and performance. Though at my farm both resolutions don't really have a lot of problems keeping up with it, I can imagine that in Mahadevi or during massive naval PvP, the GPUs will suffer severely from overheating with the 5760x1080.

An other good thing to notice is the extra perspective added on the surround monitors. The perspective at the far side of those monitors is closer than near the centre monitor. I'm not entirely sure, but I think that the nVidia drivers are responsible for this effect. An effect that adds more depth to playing with a 3-monitor setup.

I have to admit, that for a while I wasn't sure if I'd be playing ArcheAge at release. I've already seen and done most that the game has to offer. But now that I see that ArcheAge also supports multi-monitor setups, I think I'll reconsider and play it for sure at release. Only problem now is what resolution to use. Should I go save on the 3840x720 one or go for 5760x1080 but suffer lag and heavy noise from the GPUs trying to keep them self cool..?

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Farm Hauler
30 July 2014
Posted in ArcheAge
I know that yesterday I said I might quit playing, but today I learned that TRION had added the farm hauler design to the cash shop to test. And having a farm wagon, I thought to give it a try and comment on it.

First things first though. It's a good thing that this farm hauler design only needs the farm wagon and no extra materials. It would be kinda insane if the farm hauler would need an other set of rare / hard to get items, while it comes from the cash shop. And speaking about cash shop... The price for the farm hauler design is pretty steep: over 2300 credits. With 100 credits being $1, you can see that you pay around $23.50 for the upgrade of the farm wagon So it's a good thing that the alpha package I bought comes with over 11K of cash shop credits

 photo ARCHEAGE2014-07-3014-48-43-70_zps06ef10cc.jpg

Now about the farm hauler itself... As you can see on the picture above, it has 6 crates instead of the 4 that the farm wagon has. It's a pretty good upgrade because of it, though you must keep in mind that using the farm hauler yourself might end up depleting your labor points. After all creating a trade pack costs 60LP (less on higher commerce proficiency tiers) and turning in one costs 60LP as well (always - a high commerce proficiency does not lower this!). This means that a full farm hauler and 1 pack on your back eats up a maximum of 420LP to make and 420LP to turn in.
Of course, you don't need to use the farm hauler just for your own profit. You can always rent the farm hauler (as well as the wagon) so that other players can get their packs from point A to point B. For the farm wagon the regular 'price' was 1 pack per ride, and so far I haven't heard the price for renting a farm hauler, but I figure that'd be the same

Then the speed of the farm hauler. The farm wagon went at a 4m/s speed, and using one eco-friendly fuel, it would speed up to 6m/s for 8 minutes. The farm hauler is faster like it is bigger and goes at a default of 5m/s and using one eco-friendly fuel it'll speed up to 7.5m/s. This speed is pretty fast, and certainly would beat any donkey on carrots

As said, the only drawback of the farm hauler is the (real money) price that has to be paid for it. I think $23.50 is quite a steep price for a couple of pixels. A price that comes on top of the (now) 1.000 gold needed to build the farm wagon itself...

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Game Over..?
29 July 2014
Posted in ArcheAge
Don't get me wrong - ArcheAge is an awesome MMORPG if you like a sandbox political fantasy MMORPG - but this alpha is taking way too long already. I'm really coming to a point where I feel like I'm overplaying the game and getting pretty bored because of it. Add to that the problems with the crafting after the 1.2 patch was installed and all things to become bored are there

But there's also a lot of stuff to do still. There are a lot of goals I've set myself that I still need to reach, and there are also a lot of goals that I already have achieved. But it's the goals that I still want to achieve that push me toward the current 'Game Over' feeling. I don't want to hit all goals during alpha. I want to save a couple (a lot actually) of things to do at release.

On the other hand, now is the time to start a low-level character and see how the 1.2 patch will b when you play it from scratch (like at release). It also allows me to see if certain classes I might want to play mix up just fine or fully screw the build over. And while I have an idea on what build to play at release, I will not make that character right now. I still do want to keep that build a surprise to me on how it responds in general.

That would imply that I now will no longer be playing overly active and play only to test a couple of small things in the game and the effect those are. Things like buy additional proficiency slots for the crafting & gathering system. Because after all, it's still alpha and I am still allowed to screw y character(s) up ;-

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Alchemy levels way too slow
21 July 2014
Posted in ArcheAge
Of all the crafting proficiencies, Alchemy is probably the most important one out there. Reason for Alchemy to be this important is because of the polishes and oils that are used in almost every other crafting proficiency out there. As I've mentioned earlier, you can't make these polishes and oils without inter-continental trade either.

The last week I've taken a closer look at the Alchemy proficiency because I want to make these polishes and oils myself, and boy, did I bump into a HUGE disappointment. One for now and at release...

During the previous version I haven't spent overly much time into Alchemy and I made the few polishes and oils I needed myself. Because of that the Alchemy proficiency was only around 2.000. Now that the 1.2 patch is implemented, I need 5.000 Alchemy proficiency to make the tier 2 polishes for the gear I want. I know, only 3.000 points of crafting, but that's definitely the problem!

The problem arises from the extremely low leveling of the Alchemy proficiency, and most certainly compared to other crafting proficiencies that go up way faster. Even those proficiencies that are needed to 'fuel' the Alchemy proficiency, like Farming and Gathering.

When you make 1 craft for the first noobie potions, you only get 3XP for Alchemy. Though not a real problem, the XP for the other proficiencies will give you about 20-40XP. With that, for the 3XP (use of 3 labor) for Alchemy you get 10 potions! Okay, 10 potions with a very low healing/mana recovery power, but still you get too many potions for too little XP. Actually, the amount of potions is so overwhelming that at one point you will almost drown in them (right now I have 700 potions that I'm not using ).

I know you can argue that I should use polishes, oils and other stuff to level the Alchemy proficiency, and I agree with that. Problem is only that the amount of resources needed to level (I need 3 of them per polish/oil) is immensely huge. I surely would need over 200 resources for only 1.000XP in Alchemy and I would end up with around 66 polishes/oils And yeah, I have no freaking clue what to do with those now almost every player has maximum level in the game and doesn't really need to make any low-level gear.

Yeah, I think it's clear that the implementation of the 1.2 patch kinda broke Alchemy for me. I will try to level it up, but I doubt it'll be of any use though. I do know for sure though that at release I will call dibs on the Alchemy proficiency and try to level it up ASAP...

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TRION fucked up the alpha badly
13 July 2014
Posted in ArcheAge
We're almost 2 weeks playing the 1.2 patch for ArcheAge, and that's also the time that the 2nd alpha server (called Omega) was added. With the lack of open farmland spaces before the implementation of the 1.2 patch, and the huge amount of players who started all over on the Omega server, you would guess that more farmland on the original alpha server would become available.

Sadly though, that's not the case. TRION has made an error with the implementation of the payment for farmland with the new certificates (200 labor per 5). To counter this problem, TRION is paying the taxes for the players automatically. In all you'd say it's not a bad thing, because we're saving lots of labor points that can be used for actual work. But is it..?

As I started with, we're almost 2 weeks down the road with the new patch. When a player ism behind on the tax payment of his land, he has an other week to pay the tax or his property will be cleared by the game and become available to other players to claim.

With the huge amount of players no longer playing on the original alpha server, there are a lot of unused farmplots scattered around the continents. Farmplots that should have been cleared by the system automatically already and become available for other player to claim. Farmplots that are in tactical areas - islands that have the biggest chance to produce thunderstruck trees and Auroria where you can easily grow archeum trees for archeum dust. It is these kind of plots that are now mostly unused and have to be reused again ASAP. As a direct result, the prices of both archeum crystals and thunderstruck trees have gone sky high. Not only because of the huge amount of unused plots that could produce them, but also because the Omega server is sucking most of them in (yea, auction houses are shared between servers!).

So far there has been no word from TRION about fixing the tax payment problem, other than the announcement that comes in-game a couple of times that they're paying the tax for all the farmplots. This makes me wonder if I should even continue to play this alpha actively, or that I just should give up on it, keep my farm up and running and wait (im)patiently for the release of the game...

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1st closed beta on the 17th!
11 July 2014
Posted in ArcheAge
Finally, TRION has set the date for the first closed beta event: July 17th. This date is about a month later than they originally planned, but at least more players are now able to try out the game.

Personally I will not play this beta event though. I mean, 4 days to restart and 10.000s of players trying to get in? Nah, that doesn't sound like fun to me. Not to mention the lag all these players will cause to the servers AND the hunting of the monsters needed for the quests. To make things worse: the land-run (again).

I might take a peek though in the game, only to see what the cash shop will be like and comment on that. I know a couple of items that will appear there, but I'm very curious on everything TRION will add to the cash shop, so I can judge on the amount of Pay2Win stuff in it (or lack of it).

What to do when the beta is running? Well, I hope the alpha servers will stay up as well, but I have my doubts. That would mean I'd have to find something else, and luckily I did reactivate my Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn account recently (I noticed that the 1299 crysta I had there have an expiration date)...

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Trade in 1.2
06 July 2014
Posted in ArcheAge
We're a couple of days down the road with the new patch, and I have been able to test it with some trading. Let me start with the comment that trading has been extremely simplefied (as with most of the crafting). You still need the 50 silver certificate from the general merchant. Then you need a couple of cut down resources (15 to 50), for which you need a very cheap knife (consumable). Lastly you need the actual material for the pack. Yes, you hear it right. No more fuzzing around with different materials, rare materials which you always have too few of and such things!

Then the trade run itself. It can be divided in two parts: on your own continent or to the other continent (or Freedich Isle).
Your own continent is pretty straight forward. You get around 4.05 gold or 6.5 gold if you move the pack 1 or 2 zones away. I still need to try to get a pack from the contested zones on my continent and see what I'll get for those when I bring them to the regular spots (City of Towers and Austera).
Trade to the other continent (and Freedich Isle) only gives crafting resources or gilda stars. But sadly it seems a bit bugged at the moment I have taken tradepacks from Sanddeep (a coastal region), and from Marianople (deep in the other continent) to Solis (I'll explain later why I go there and bring it to my own continent), and in both cases I only had 1 gilda star or 13 or 14 crafting resources. IMO a pack from Marianople should give more because it's coming from deeper in the continent. On the other side, the while trade on the own continent is save (though not for me walking around there...). I have yet to bring packs to Luteson Harbor (Villanelle) and Cearnond (Ynystere) to see what I get there, but I think it will be the same...

Now why I go to the other continent and bring a tradepack to my own continent for gilda stars and resources... Well, the reason is actually simple, and also the same reason a lot of players hate the 1.2 patch. If I bring a pack to the other continent, you're bound to the PvP rules of the other continent. This means that I can not initiate PvP with the enemy faction. With a lot of enemy players actually waiting on the docks for us to come, it's an easy picking for them and we're pretty sure to loose our tradepacks Making a tradepack on the other continent and bringing it to my own continent does give me the certainty that the campers on the dock can not attack me, simply because they're my own faction and they can not PvP with me for the simple reason it's a save area for my own faction

Last but not least a word on the gilda stars and crafting resources... Both are equally important, though the crafting resources more than the gilda stars. With the current low gain of gilda stars, doing the daily quests gives actually more gilda stars than the traderuns do, and it's 100% save. If you have 30K Husbandry, you can get up to 8 gilda stars per day from the daily quests I also need to add, that gilda powder (yeah, we have to crush our hard earned gilda stars!) is used as a crafting ingredient for all sealed items (crafting for level 40 and up). Add to that the fact that almost everything you can buy from gilda stars on the Mirage Isle is more expensive than before the patch, and you see a problem arise with the number of gilda stars you need...
Crafting resources are (as far as I could check) only used for Alchemy. You need them to make polish, which is used in almost every craft you do. To make things worse, you need 3 of the T1 resources, which means I can only make 4 polish from one tradepack. I haven't yet looked at amount of the T2 and T3 resources in Alchemy, but I guess it'll be the same, as well as the number gained from a tradepack...

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Labor in 1.2
05 July 2014
Posted in ArcheAge
With the new 1.2 patch also the whole labor system has been overhauled. Though not a full overhaul, there's been a lot of tweaking done to the system to 'optimize' it. Well, optimize, it looks more that it's been done this way to sell labor point supplemental items

Lets start with the most important change... In the previous version of the game, we could craft almost everything we wanted while leveling up our character and the corresponding labor proficiencies. This was a handy system and every player was pretty happy with it.

Now after the 1.2 patch, a lot more limitations to labor usage have been implemented with a minimum proficiency for the skill. And to make things worse, a lot of rewarded points have changed as well. Some went up, others went down. As an example, I'd love to take the Alchemy proficiency. before the patch you basically had to pay a lot of gold for the bottles you'd need for the potions you'd make, but at least you could quickly make the higher level potions because the minimum requirement to make them was pretty low, and the points rewarded for the craft was relatively high (15 each craft iirc). Now though, the Alchemy craft now rewards a mere 5 points per craft for the same potions, while the curve to the next 'tier' of potions is pretty high. There are two examples really showing this.
The first one is the pet recovery potion - a potion that resides in the husbandry proficiency and has no minimum requirements. The problem making this potion is that you need a healing potion which has a minimum of 25K alchemy
The other example is the tier 2 polish that you need to make a farmer's workingstation from you small scarecrow. This polish has a minimum requirement of 10K or 15K Alchemy, while you can need it already at level 10. Add to that the extreme slow 'growing' of the Alchemy proficiency and you can see the problem that' arising here...

An other problem with the new labor system is the raised labor used for some skills. Sadly though, this increase is mainly for the processing of raw materials into materials to be used for actual crafting (like 3 wool into 1 fabric, 3 ores into 1 ingot and 3 logs into 1 lumber). That used to have a 3 labor requirement, but now it's increased to 5 labor. Though it doesn't seem so bad, the amount of raw materials needed to be processed is enormous! Not to mention, you get a lot of it and with this increased labor usage, you can't process it all anymore.

Last but not least an other HUGE complaint on the new labor system. You get more XP per labor point used than before. This implies that the pure crafters (I'm one of those) will level a lot faster now when crafting their stuff. I'm not saying it's a real bad thing, because leveling a new skill tree can be a pain, and crafting can ease that pain. But if you start crafting from early in the game like I did, you'll miss out on a lot of the other good stuff the game has to offer...

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Patch 1.2 coming
02 July 2014
Posted in ArcheAge
Finally, the long awaited version 1.2 is coming to ArcheAge. A version that holds a massive list of patch notes and is said to have destroyed the game as I've been playing it for now in Korea.

One of the most dramatic changes is the somewhat forced into PvP zones for the carebears (not being me ) if they want things accomplished. This is show by the removal of the gilda star traders in most zones except the harbour ones and the only way to get a gilda star reward by doing trade overseas (that or get stabilizers needed for crafting). An othe rbig change is that the Auroria Mineral Water can only be obtained from Auroria now. You used to be able to get the barrels for special tickets from the continent's main harbour, but those will be removed now.

An other dramatic change comes to healing & healing-hybrid classes. Where in the past mages and melee warrios picked up healing as a '2nd option', in this new patch, healing will get it's own stat used (Spirit) and it's own 'damage type'. Much like mages have magical damage, melee warriors physical damage and archers ranged damage. This change is made to balance out the over-powered hybrid players and force players into a full healing spec (or something close to that).

The update to this new patch will take around 12 hours. 12 hours of nothing to do (hmm, play WildStar a bit more perhaps?), but 12 hours in where the game itself DOES continue. TRION has already warned us to pay our taxes to make sure you're not evicted from your plot.

And with the game running through while patching, our guild (and I think a lot of others as well) came up with the idea to plant HUGE AMOUNTS of trees as 'illegal farm', using the downtime to protect the trees from others to steal. Of course, this planting is not done without a reason... We all hope for thunder to strike our trees while the servers are down, so that we can have a nice bonus while the game is being patched

 photo ARCHEAGE2014-07-0216-02-46-98_zpsc428bef4.jpg

I have planted 95 trees myself, hoping for thunder to strike as well. Knowing my luck though with games, it'll probably not strike at all on one of my trees. But if it doesn't, I at least have about 650-800 logs from them, which I can sell nicely later on after I have processed them into lumber. Of course, I have picked a spot that's semi-save. Of course, it's in the open world, but a place where few people pass, though one did happen to pass while I was busy planting them..

So, tomorrow morning around 5 (CEST), the servers should be up and running again, and I'll see if my luck has been granted, or that I'll be out of labor points again after having cut down 95 trees

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