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The Struggle is Real

ArcheAge Columns - By Mark Wilhelm on September 30, 2014

The Struggle is Real

No MMO launch is flawless. ArcheAge’s launch in Europe and North America has had its fair share of issues this past week. Let’s take a look at a few of them and discuss what Trion Worlds can do to give players a better experience.

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The Bots Are Real

The hunting fields of ArcheAge are crowded with full or semi-automated player characters, and they’re quite easy to tell apart from their legitimate counterparts. Character names are either randomized or follow a generic pattern and pathing, combat and other actions take place at regular timed intervals. Some bots even teleport between mobs (not with the Auramancy skill).

The bright side of this issue is that Trion has provided players with a method with which they can report problem players at the cost of labor points. If the report is substantiated, the reporters get their labor points back plus a bonus. The problem lies in the amount of reports on characters that are later deleted and can’t be checked. The reporters will probably never see those labor points again.

The Spam is Real

Global chat spam is a real problem in ArcheAge. Faction, Trial and Nation chat are sometimes flooded by bots with cryptic messages advertising random gold-selling sites. The worst part about this is Trion doesn’t seem to have the power to stop them. There are times when you literally can’t block a spamming player character, because the moment after his or her message is sent, the character name no longer exists!

Either the bots are spoofing their names or they have scripted the character deletion sequence. Trion could re-implement the character deletion timer to try and prevent this (they made deletion instantaneous recently for reasons unknown) and XLGAMES could help curb the spam infestation by giving players a way to report or moderate spammers in chat.

The Landed Elite are Real

I went over this issue in my last column, but it’s even more obvious now: too few people own too much land on popular ArcheAge servers (I’m playing on Kyrios). Some properties have come up for demolition this week, but not nearly enough.

The crowds present at these emergent, unplanned landgrab events are massive and some are probably making use of automated tools to claim land faster than humanly possible. Trion and XLGAMES could help curb this problem by limiting properties owned by accounts. Some may say this issue will iron itself out when Auroria opens up, but I have my doubts. Tax certificates are far too easy to acquire.

The Grind is Real

When you hit 50 in ArcheAge, there’s still quite a bit of content to complete before you can really say “I’m ready for Auroria.” Of course there’s dungeons to run and bills to pay, but before all of that there’s Hasla. Beautiful, terrible Hasla.

For those who haven’t been introduced to this magical zone in the corner of the Haranya continent, Hasla is an extremely mountainous semi-PvP area where you can acquire some very nice weapons in exchange for a large investment of time. You can kill mobs in a very small corner of the area map and gather stacks of six different tokens to exchange for six different weapons. These weapons are quite powerful until crafters are able to produce greater quantities of quality goods.

Everyone wants tokens. Everyone’s partying in Hasla. Expect to spend hours collecting the tokens you need. The grind is really real. XLGAMES can fix this by either making the hunting ground larger or lowering the number of tokens required to craft one of the weapons. They could also reduce the number of unique tokens from six to three, one for one handed weapons, one for two handed weapons and one for instruments.

As a player who has managed to grind out three separate weapons in Hasla (that’s 450 tokens and many, many hours of wasted time), I can safely say I never want to go there again. I enjoy playing ArcheAge quite a bit, but I never want to visit Hasla again.

How was your week, ArcheAge fans?

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