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ArcheCraft - Urza's Blog!

This is the copy of my blog from ArcheCraft as I want to share it with the MMORPG community!

Author: UrzaKeFrostgard

ArcheAge: #1 Influence of RMT

Posted by UrzaKeFrostgard Tuesday August 26 2014 at 10:53AM
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I am used to read a lot of threads in the official ArcheAge forum and some other sites, also I pay a good amount of attention for the faction chat ingame.
While there are opinions from F2P and patrons that are agreeing a lot of stuff breaks both into two seperate camps.

While most of this stuff, in my humble opinion, is based on a jump to a conclusion, some of the points they call for are real issues the community and Trion have to think about.
I will take my time to refine the issues and bringing myself into them, I want to take some of the “fear” F2Ps might have about ArcheAge away and I will try to explain some thoughtprocesses behind the decisions Trion made.

One of the most discussed issues of the past weeks are the differences between patrons and F2P splitting in topics like labor points, housing and the cash shop itself.
While putting all this issues in one paragraph could be confusing I am splitting them up.

Issue 1: The influence of RMT
Before adressing the issues in this categorie I want you to remember that nearly everything in our world costs money. As a matter of fact Trion needs money to pay for the hardware, software and their employees. On the other hand nearly every company wants to gain profit, that for I know that Trion other other MMO companies are making more money than they need to cover the expenses.
Every MMO need to yield a profit. The moment costs = profit the publisher may consider to close the servers, the moment they will experience losses they will shut down the servers for sure.

Based on this fact every MMO needs something the publisher can get profit from and that is what brought us the diffrent payment methods we have now.
As I could fill the complete blog entry with stuff about the diffrent methods lets do a cut a this moment and say:

“ArcheAge is a free to play game with a cash shop and a premium membership option!”

Before we discuss how to get it, let’s detail what Patron status means in ArcheAge. Patrons will enjoy the following benefits:

• Bonus online Labor Point regeneration (10 per 5 minutes)
• Offline Labor Point regeneration (5 per 5 minutes)
• Increased maximum Labor Points cap (5000 maximum)
• 10% bonus to all Experience gained through combat or labor usage
• 10% discount on Marketplace purchases (available after launch)
• 5 Loyalty Tokens per day for use in the Loyalty Store (awarded on first login of the day)
• Ability to claim land by placing farms and houses
• Ability to pay in-game taxes on owned property
• Ability to post auctions on the Auction House by default

The Marketplace and Loyalty Store are different in that the former accepts Credits, the premium currency of ArcheAge, while the latter accepts Loyalty Tokens earned from the Patron Program. The Loyalty Store will offer a variety of items including special pets, fun musical instruments, certificates that cover weekly taxes on a large farm, and Patron-only lock boxes that each contain valuable, surprise loot. Patron and free accounts will both start with two character slots and will be able to purchase additional slots up to a maximum of six across all servers, with a maximum of four slots on a single server.

Issue 1.1: Labor Points
F2P Labor Point Regeneration
Online 5/5 – Offline 0/5 – Maximum of 2,000 Labor Points

Patron Labor Points Regeneration
Online 10/5 – Offline 5/5 – Maximum of 5,000 Labor Points

Both can use Worker’s Compensation for 1,000 Labor Points every 12h per character.
Both account types starting with two character slots with the option to buy four more slots for the account.

The Labor Points are directly chained to every economic action in ArcheAge so you may consider Labor Points as a resource you can convert to gold in various ways.
While there are possibilities to gain gold without labor points these ways are not that easy and hardly hidden by them who know them.

One of the reasons to use this system are the gold sellers. As you are limited to a maximum of 14,880 Labor Points (2,880 + 12,000) in 24h using 12x Worker’s Compensation and a patrons account a bot is limited in the economic damage he can deal per day.
A F2P Account is limited to 13,440 Labor Points (1,440 + 12,000) in 24h.
As more characters cost more money and even Worker’s Compensation costs additional money/gold time will show what way these people will take.
Taking away the Worker’s Compensations for being 24h hours online a patron will regen 2,880 Labor Points and a F2P will regen 1,440 Labor Points.
Converting these Labor Points by a common exchange rate on the alpha servers you can get about 20 gold for ~150 Labor Points as a player. Due to the nature of bots they won’t be able to exchange their Labor Points at this rate.
A lot of bots will exchange their Labor Points for 2-4 silver per Labor Point resulting in ~45 gold per F2P bot account not using Worker’s Compensation.
Still 100 bots would get 4500 gold per day but without the shield that the Labor Points provide bots could easy make hundred of gold per day.

Lets go for the Labor Points Regeneration itself!
While you may understand one of the ideas behind the Labor Points now you may ask for higher Labor Point Regeneration or even a Offline Regeneration for F2P accounts.
First want to take a deeper look on the offline regeneration for F2P accounts.
As we all understand a free to play account costs nothing except for the time you need to create it.
What would happen the F2P accounts would get just one Labor Point every 5 minutes? Well the would regenerate 288 Labor Points in 24h while the account is not played and that would be full 2,000 Labor Points after roughly seven days.
This moment I myself would create massive amounts of F2P accounts for using the account once per week mining the 2,000 Labor Points and sending the yield to my main.
Again think not only about actual players but bots abusing the offline regeneration.

Now for the amount of Labor Points you get every five minutes.
The moment the Labor Point Regeneration for Patrons Offline Regeneration + F2P Online Regeneration would exceed the Online Regeneration of Patrons you would play your F2P account while your Patron account would be there just for economic reasons like paying taxes as you would regen more Labor due to one offline Patron and one online F2P to stop this abuse:

Patron Online >= Patron Offline + F2P Online

Patrons get this Offline Labor Point Regeneration for paying a monthly subscription. (For now I dont want to talk about APEX)
FYI: Paying for Patron Status and being offline costs less than being online with a F2P 24/7 if you have to pay for your electricity! Even using Worker’s Compensation once a day would costs less than 24/7 working GPUs.

For the Online Regeneration of Patron Account I guess Trion want the paying costumers not to get his much ahead of the F2Ps so they only doubled the being online regeneration.

The last point for about Labor Points is the factor about limiting players as you can only craft while you have Labor Points.
Let us look into this issue by timings from the alpha servers. You can spend ~100 Labor Points per minute for mining while a maximum of 5-6 are mining near you resulting in 5,000 Labor Points used in about 50 minutes. Adding up 6x Worker’s Compensations you can mining for maximum of 11,240 Labor Points in ~2 hours. (5,000 + 6,000 + 240)
These numbers are not perfect but may show an average of material mining yield in one hour. You will get nearly 1,000 Iron ore and about 600 raw stones for one hour of mining + some rare ores and gems.
Lets do some maths at this point!

1,000 Iron Ore > 333 Iron Ingots
600 Raw Stones > 200 Stone Bricks > 66 Hereafter Stones

333 Iron Ingots = ~1,500 Labor Points
200 Stone Bricks = 1,000 Labor Points
66 Hereafter Stones = 3,300 Labor Points

Keep in mind that every Labor Point used increasing your Crafting Skill for the same amount, resulting in higher Crafting Skills using less Labor Points and less time per craft.
Keeping the 333 Iron Ingots you can craft more then 60 tier 1 swords. Well crafting one sword costs 100 Labor Points resulting in 6,000 Labor Points needed to craft those 60 swords.
While low tier items only require few materials to be crafted the higher you climb the more and exotic materials do you need.

For the T7 sword you need the T6 sword + other costly materials. While you need a crafting skill of 30,000 for the T7 sword your Labor Points cost will sink and you will need less time to craft.
Assume you are going for 5,000 Labor Points a day you would need only 6 days to be able to craft this T7 sword.
Wait a moment that would mean you do not have any labor costs for getting the materials!
BAM! To get the materials all by yourself you need a lot more Labor Points and your six day plan you take a lot more then six days.
Some possible results:
- another player is already flooding the market with his goods
- as your weapon is not that good you may need more time to kill enemies resulting on lesser farming yield or for PvP in your death

Maybe some of you already have realised what I am going to say now:
This game is a multiplayer game with a lot of benefits for player that cooperate with each other instead trying to solo everything.
The Labor Point System itself, you may even call it forcing, the community to cooperate and work with another.
Miners will provide metalworkers with ores which they will smelting into ingots selling the ingots to other crafters creating e.g. plate armor or swords.
The Miner and the metalworker will buy the sword from the weapon smith.

With this crafting chain the best products will be availible for everybody in the shortest amount of time!

These are just some thoughts about the Labor Points System and I have to say this is one of the best concepts I have ever seen in MMOs.
Due to the fact that I recently clicked on preview my post I will finish this post for now and will be back with the next issue (Issue 1.2 : Housing & Land) soon.

ArcheAge - Of Trolls and Chats

Posted by UrzaKeFrostgard Tuesday August 19 2014 at 4:39AM
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The first thing I want to do is to give you a small overview about my ArcheAge career:

Three days before the CBE2 I started rto gather every information possible about ArcheAge soon after the CBE2 I bought myself an Archeum Pack and started playing ArcheAge on the alpha server Omega. While my focus at this moment is to create the perfect headstart plan I've started playing CBE2 as Firran with a switch to Nuian as my first alpha character, in CBE3 I tried some thoughts about the headstart as Nuian again and at this moment I am playing my Firran on Omega as my final main character.

 

As the racial skills may have a minimum impact on your gaming I've chosen Firran > Nuian not as a racial aspect but the eastern faction in general. Maybe later I'll give you a complete overview about the diffrences I have experienced between the two starting factions but for now I want to focus on the community and the chat. One thing I may want to say before starting, the eastern faction is way lower populated than the western.

 

Starting with CBE2 and my first time on the eastern faction EU server:

There were so much trolls in the faction chat even I started trolling new players... well I could not blame some trolls trolling as some of the questions that were asked are... yeah well maybe you have heard that there are no stupid questions just stupid answers... this is so damn wrong... but yeah it is the 2nd beta event and most of the players even on release know nearly nothing about the game they are playing. While the trolling were strong these days the overall conversations were fairly friendly besides some comments on the every two hours occuring discussion about WoW beeing the first and best MMO. After a few hours the first trial started and, well, this spam after the "noobs" realised the could use the /trial without any restrictions... still the overall faction chat remained friendly.

Most of the chat, maybe 95%, were english about 4% were french and the last 1% were german and russian.

On Sunday I created a Nuian character on the same server. The first thing I noticed that a lot more germans were playing on the western faction as about 10%+ of the chat were german. Again the overall chat looked friendly you could notice that on the eastern chat a lot more questions were answered seriously.

As time was running out I do not stay for very long and finished my CBE2 with the shopping for the Archeum Pack.

 

On the alpha server Omega the first character I created were a Nuian again as I wanted to learn more about the western faction ingame. With just a hand full of trolls on the alpha server the chat were not only friendly but helpful as well.

A lot of people tried to calmy answer even the noobiest questions as clearly as possible and even for people that were not able to understand the first answer the people tried to explain it until the person got it.

But there were that huge contagion of goldspammers... gosh there are so many of them... at the moment you have to block about at least one person every 15-30 minutes due to gold spamming. Sometimes while logging in the first time of the day you have to block ten people before you are able to read the real faction chat.

As the chat were overall friendly some players not trolling just beeing toxic or "pro" came out occasionally and you were able to see that some hate is buried deep inside.

 

Some days ago I switched from Nuian back to Firran again (also on Omega). Not even one hour into the game I realised that a lot more people were playing the western faction as the easterns faction chats was noticable "slower", there are also less gold spammers on the eastern side! But the community of the eastern chat is just great, even the friendly and helpful people of the western chat did not stand a chance about the kindness and endurance of the eastern people. Well as the eastern faction seems a lot smaller than the western there a less trolls in general. I may switch to the Alpha Server and another CBE4 server to get more informations about the faction communitys but for now it seems the smaller eastern community offers somewhat more friendlyness than the western.

ArcheAge - Black Despair

Posted by UrzaKeFrostgard Sunday August 17 2014 at 3:37AM
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Well, this is not the name of guild but my thought while playing ArcheAge. ArcheAge is so far the best game I have ever played but as I am a perfectionist I start to despair while thinking about the head start...

The last headstart in which I took part was the Wildstar one, ah Wildstar the freakin' straight forward theme parks offering you, get level 50 while gathering, attunement, raid, gg...

Well I like the fact that in ArcheAge starting with around level 10 you have to make huge decision that change your future, well you are able to do everything in ArcheAge true but lets take a short look on the first 50 gilda stars.

 

There are three huge starting plans you can realise with about level 25 after you got your 50th gilda star. First you can buy your first ship, secound you can buy your first farm house or third you can buy a farm wagon.

If you do not take the ship you need a friend of guild mate getting the ship first and you will increase your production with the farm house with addition storage space while you secure a huge piece of land für yourself, but in the same moment not taking the farm wagon your gold income will be way lower while your production is increased. While you take the ship first you are able to do intercontinential trade runs for gilda stars both, your production and gold income will be lower. Last if you take the farm wagon you will increase your gold income while maybe getting problems with your supplies.

 

For someone who wants to "perfect" the headstart it is a huge pain in the ass, but I had never have that much fun setting up my plans for a headstart. It is like clicking on the machining folio to calculate the mats/gold cost of the farm wagon itself. Damn I had to laugh so hard. Everything in this game is just so huge. Even the choosing of the faction had become the a real deal in the last two days. That for I could do nothing but to switch around friday evening from beta to alpha as I needed more time to get accurate information. While the racials slightly benefits the eastern faction for the land combat the western faction get that benefit in the naval combat. But in terms of economy we are on a diffrent planet. Just cold blooded calculation the available farming and housing plots on the eastern continent are perfect for trading. While the western continent offers a way smoother and easier leveling experience. Both are viable but depending on your starting plans for the first month one could fitting better than the other.

 

Back to the diary, the last two days I have learned a lot about the infrastructure of both continents, labor to xp and crafting/farming. Did you know a 16x16 scarecrow is 300 logs? Well I have also realised that your farming space, even if you are going for characters for the 8x8 is not enough to provide you with enough land to get your 3rd and 4th trade runs quest done with 4 characters. You need friends/guild mates or you have to plant hidden farms in the wild because even with the public farms you have not enough land (for the nuian/elves this is 100% clarified - firran/hara I have started calculation) to safely cultivate all needed ressources. Neverless public farms are great for every starter and you should plant and harvest everytime you get the possibility to do so.

 

For the next days I have planned to take deeper look into the eastern continent to clear up my despair!

ArcheAge - the 1st night

Posted by UrzaKeFrostgard Friday August 15 2014 at 3:34AM
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Well, as I already have played CBE2 and alpha I could progress the start of the CBE3 as a look for on the headstart.

Starting as Battlerage Novice - Nuian I logged in and were laughing out loud the moment I saw all the new characters in the starting zone. Neverless most of them did not know how to run and there were also enough foxes to clear the first quest without any problems. Surprisingly this day I only had to skip one quest where you have to kill three boars, god damn so many characters and so few boars - lol, and with run/quickshot I could progress really fast. At level 5 they mass of players the area started to thin out and not that much players were near me, pushing forward choosing 2h swords and leather armor whereever I could with level 9 nobody was near me.

After I've done the quests in that small castle I've reached level 10 and could choose my third tree - Archery. Without any calculation I were more then surprised to get this build on level 10.

From this moment every enemy died within 4 skills (while weaving) and with the extra speed of quickstep I could progress really fast.

Thinking about headstart I got the scarecrow and had to decide to do the last quest in this area or move on to get my first land, I decided (wrongly) to move on and did what I had to for the scarecrow.

 

A short though break:

For headstart I am planning for start 4 characters getting 3 times the 16x16 scarecrow and once the 24x24 before leveling. That for I have to do the traderun questchain 4 times + gathering some ores/stones for the upgrade of the 16x16 to 24x24.

At the moment I am calculating the stuff I have to put on my farm with every character to smoothly get my scarecrows / trade runs done.

 

So I put up some chicken, grape whines and gooslings. After that I had to head back to the last area because I skipped not only normal quest but story quest. I good ment word from me, to finish that quest arena you need a maximum auf 5-7 minutes so do not skip to the scarecrow quest but finish the area and head on then - you also could use the money gain from that quest on your farm. Also keep in mind that because of the farm space you have to put the chicken on the publicfarm so your farm can filled with grape whines and gooslings. 

All of this was done within 90 minutes. While chicken need 3h to grow you could get two more characters to their scarecrow before you have to log back to chop your chicken. Also keep in mind that all your farms are account shared so you main can use the alts farm as his own (besides decoration placement).

Without the need to play four characters in beta I started questing again still choosing 2h swords, bows but plate armor this time. From level 11 to 16 (I am for now) I could kill everybody enemy (but named) with 5 skills - Charged Shot > Piercing Shot > Charge > Triple Slash > Triple Slash - while weaving.

For sure I will start head start as bloodskald!

 

Today I want to found a guild as we are not sure to go international guild to test our nerves after a weekend english only ;)

ArcheAge: Setting up class

Posted by UrzaKeFrostgard Thursday August 14 2014 at 6:24AM
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In a few hours the beta server will go live. Time to set up my class!

As I already have played CBE2 and the alpha I have to possibilitys. First I could try out a possible starting combination for release (Battlerage / Songcraft / Archery or Battlerage / Defense / Archery) or I could go another way and play something I will not use at the 4 day headstart like Vitalism or Sorcery first.

 

Well since you can level all skill trees I will have all trees maxed but the starting trees are very important for some reasons e.g. quest speed, kill speed, utility, movementspeed, group viablilty, trading and pvping? And that are just some short thoughts.

As the leveling of the alt trees are mainly grinding you can either solo or group grind. With Battlerage / Defense I am totally fine grinding solo so I can level one tree at a time. With Archery you can grind in a group and level two trees at a time. Also the Battlerage quest and kill time is really great. With Battlerage / Defense / Archery I would have a great build for getting all other trees up.

 

Also in mind I guess I am playing Ebonsong main (Archery / Shadowplay / Songcraft) I would have Archery already on max with group grinding Shadowplay and Songcraft to max option.

BUT with Battlerage / Songcraft / Archery I would profit from the great movementspeed increase from Songcraft reducing the time I will need overall while Battlerage still killing mobs fast and some healing potential from songcraft while playing 2h mace. I would also be able to support in group play and CCing from Archery / Songcraft.

 

Well Battlerage / Songcraft isn't nearly as good as Battlerage / Defense for solo grinding. Group grinding for my main build would be in this case (Archery / Defense / Shadowplay) for beeing able to get my main build + solo grinding capability.

As I want to get perfect start on release I will stick this time to Battlerage / Songcraft / Archery as I already tried Battlerage / Defense / Archery in CBE2 and I will maybe try out a caster tree 1st in the next CBE, alpha or later this weekend.

 

So I am going for: Bloodskald

 

About the armor and the weapon choice, since weaving is great I will start with a nodachi swapping later to 2h axe or hammer! The armor of my choice will be the plate armor as many enemys dealing physical damage!

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