Expedition to a Crafting Haven
I took a few minutes to check the forums for something helpful and found out that someone had set up a claim with high-level crafting stations in it. I also found out this fellow was not only on my server, but somewhere northeast of me. On the possibility that this crafting haven existed on my actual map, I decided to make a run for that area instead of back to the hub..
If you’ll remember an earlier column, you’ll note that Sony’s standard time allotment for the day and night cycles was 72 minutes, That applied here as, eventually, it got pretty dark. The moon actually manages to make ore locations sparkle and shine a bit, which I thought was nice, but aside from that, it was kind of hard to see if you were in a canyon with mountains on either side.
Regardless, I just ran up the mountains. After a bit of surveying, I found out the crafting area I’d imagined wasn’t a dream. It was there that I found out that you could actually craft basic stat-enhancing items on a workbench, create planks and wooden stuff with the saw table, and smelt my ore and fashion stone into better things with the forge.
With the crazy hole digging I’d done on the mountain and the random bits and bobs I’d picked up, I was able to fashion my first enchanted item, the Keen-Eye band. This increases the discovery statistic, and supposedly allows for harvesting more useful items from harvesting nodes like the ground, ores, and wood.
After building a couple of additional items, I realized my time was about to reach 90 minutes, so I snapped this one last screenshot below. The Keen-Eye Band made it easier to find blue items from harvests. The picture also shows how different it is when it’s getting darker as opposed to when the sun is about to set. By my reckoning this was probably when the sun was beginning to rise again.
Finding Your Fun
Landmark’s Alpha isn’t for everyone, sadly. You have to create your own objectives, and sometimes, that isn’t a fun thing to do when you just want to be a bit mindless. Still, it’s enjoyable if you create little goals for yourself.
Right now, amassing the materials to make items and build a house is my starting goal. Moving forward, I want to deck out my place with high-level crafting stations. Then eventually, I want to terraform my land and add a moat. Not all of that is possible in the Alpha as of yet, but that’s part of the fun of testing it.
The world is growing with you and you can actually tell the developers that there might be a better way of doing things that can make the game more fun for everyone. In fact, someone’s already posted petitions to make it easier to track how much resources you’ve gathered relative to your planned creation. Someone else has even gone ahead and created a pretty detailed graphical representation of how crafting could be made more fun and less strenuous.
You can expect the coming week to be spent in the game for bursts of play. As they create more avenues to enhance the gameplay and smooth out the controls, you can be sure I’ll be testing them. In the meantime, my immediate plan is to immerse myself in the gathering and crafting process, then work on mastering my building skills so I can build the foundations for my starting home.
That said, if you do plan on buying into the alpha, when you finish your download, go to your installation folder and look for the Tutorial folder: it actually has a number of tutorial videos and a cheatsheet for the controls. If I’d found out about this before I jumped into the game, it would have saved me a ton of trouble, but better late than never.
Victor Barreiro Jr. / Victor Barreiro Jr. maintains the EverQuest Next column (and formerly the Devil’s Advocate column) for MMORPG.com. He also writes for news website Rappler as a technology reporter. You can find more of his writings on Games and Geekery and on Twitter at @vbarreirojr.
Links to more great EQN:L coverage: