Thursday, 28 July 2011

Stars and Swirls

All continues to go well - hunting skills are progressing quite quickly now.  I am getting to the point where Moles are not giving enough skills/SAU gains though so need to think about progressing to the next level of mob.  Will start doing some exploring I think to see what it about in other zones.

Still a way away from being able to tackle bots and cyborgs though, which is the main hunting goal.  Did get a couple of globals though as well as a badge for research - no idea if it has any use at all, but was nice to get none the less.

Friday, 22 July 2011

Promotion and other goodies

Qweeg got promoted within the society last night, after reaching the 14 day probation period - hurrah!  In addition he also got his first PANE last night.  PANEs (Physical Ability Nano Enhancers) are used to boost your core attributes - Strength; Stamina; Intellect; Health.  

These are awarded automatically as a result of skilling, and are accompanied by a nice set of global swirlies.

And since I have now also learned how to take in-game screenshots (Ctrl + M) I can start making this blog a little more aesthetically appealing.

Skills, Skills and more Skills.

Qweeg has been skilling well over the last few days.  The focus has been mainly on mining and hunting - well when I say hunting I really mean avoid skilling, more on that later.  Lots of skills have now reached the 100% mark and so need to be unblocked to progress further.  There are mixed reports on how to use blocking, some say you should keep unimportant skills blocked so that any skill gains you get are only in important skills; others say doing this restricts the total amount of skill gains you get.  I am going with my gut feel on this and keeping everything unblocked.  At one point I had several skills at 100% and needing unblocking in mining, and it felt like I was getting less skill gain messages.

Hunting is not really hunting at the moment.  Because to start with you are just so weak, attempting to kill anything other than the smallest of creatures is futile.  Instead it seems best to start of Avoid Skilling, until you are able to kill a few more things.  Basically this involves taunting a weak creature into attacking you and then just healing rather than attacking it back.  Over time you gain a lot of avoid skills and already things are starting to become a little easier.  I have bought a slightly better gun and healing kit - for emergency use only - to help me stay alive in tricky situations and that helps too.

Still a long way from killing anything very meaningful but I can see some progress.

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Not so Noob!

Left it a few days before updating this to get a more of a feel for things.  I now feel I have a bit good grasp of the basics - I have hunted, surface mined and crafted.  No per taming yet and no underground (UG) mining.

Qweeg also got his first global the other day - 7k in SAU from rock picking.  Globals are awarded in Skill Advancement Units rather than cash in this game, which can be used to unblock skill levels.  Nice gold swirlies to see so early on in Qweeg's AW life.  In addition he also reached stage one in Ore Gatherer (next stop Uberville ;) ).

I have also had some time to think about the path I think I would like to progress with Qweeg.  UG mining is appealing but is apparently costly.  There are a lot of components needed to craft the tools for mining so this makes initial investment high, and certain level of hunting skill is required to be able to mine in the best places.

Given the tools are expensive I am thinking that Qweeg should have one crafting speciality - mining tools.

So the plan in very broad terms is:

  • Skill up basic mining skills using Pick mining
  • Skill up hunting to a decent level - with special focus on being able to take on robots (a lot of the mining tool components come from them)
  • Skill up crafting to the point of being able to make basic mining tools
  • Start UG mining

Clearly this a long term goal - for example Geology needs to be at least level 3 for example before I unlock the next related skill and start to be able to identify some more mined resources.

Hunting is particularly slow to skill at the moment until I at least build up my avoidance up enough to be able to take on a few more mobs.  So that is going to take a while.

But I feel happy that at least I have a plan now - even if it is likely to change moving forwards.

Friday, 8 July 2011

Transportation and Storage

Hmm, another fairly fundamental difference from Entropia - and actually this is different from most other MMO style games I have played.

Firstly storage is local to the zone you are in.  Characters have a weight limit so need to store excess items - otherwise movement speed is severely restricted.  This is fine except it throws up the issue of how to move items from one zone to another.  The basic weight limit on a character is 500kg and Qweeg can reach that in under 30 minutes using a steel pick to break rocks for minerals in QA1.  These minerals and stones can be refined down to half their weight but even so it takes very little time to accumulate a massive amount of resource in weight.

This wouldn't be such a problem except that as far as I can tell in QA1 other than those used for refining most of the terminals aren't active.  So this means that if you want to actually craft something out of the resources you have gathered you have to take it to the Saransk zone, where all the terminals are active.  The journey on foot (without being over-encumbered) from QA1 to Saransk takes about 10 minutes or so - providing you can find a route avoiding mobs.  But an over-encumbered avatar would take far longer to do the same journey.

There is a metro, which allows fast travel between zones - but almost all of your items other than money get left behind when you travel.  Even your clothes I believe, which explains why I keep seeing characters running around in just their underwear I guess.  So the metro doesn't provide a solution to this problem.

Entropia handles this issue differently - all storages are linked so items held there can be accessed from any storage unit regardless of where you are in the world.  Additionally their mode of fast travel (teleporters) does allow the transportation of the character's personal inventory.

So what is the solution?  To be honest I don't know at the moment - it could be I have misunderstood something in the game mechanics and there is in fact a simple way round this.  Certainly constantly running between QA1 and Saransk carrying 500kg at a time doesn't seem very appealing.  Neither does taking a snail's pace trip over-encumbered.  One answer I guess is to simply buy what you need from the market in Saransk - but that doesn't seem like a very cost effective way of playing.

More investigation is needed here methinks.  I do wonder actually if this is a method of providing a reason for implementing vehicles into the game?  It seems as though they are planned but not yet implemented - perhaps owning for example your own truck might allow you faster travel between zones and to move some of your inventory across with you.

Societies - Fit or Miss?

So last night Qweeg became a proud member of an AfterWorld Society - The Misfits.  Everyone I have met in there so far seems very helpful and friendly, just what you want from a gaming society in fact.  AfterWorld Societies are similar to those in Entropia - and guilds in other games, but at the moment I just don't know enough about them to cover anything much here.  I will write a more detailed Society blog entry later on.

In addition to being in a society Qweeg is now also in a corporation.  This concept is new to me - it seems like a Society is a group of players who play together, share information and generally help each other out, whereas a Corporation is more of a financial entity, which can own land, businesses etc..  Entropia kind of treat those two concepts as the same thing and packages them both up in a Society.  The corporation functionality doesn't seem to be really implemented yet - I imagine land ownership will be available in the General Release of AfterWorld later in the year.  Again I will add a blog on this once I know more.

Suffice it to say that I am very happy with my choice of Society and that they took pity on Qweeg the Noob :) 

Q and A

Short and sweet post this one.  Up until now I have been referring to the starting zone as Q1.  In fact  I believe it is actually QA1 - (Quarantine  A1 in full).  What a noob I am!