I’ve been playing ArcheAge now for almost two weeks. In the last couple of days, the outrageous queues have abated for most people. Thus far the solution has been a combination of Trion performing daily server restarts to rout AFK bots, more servers, additional capacity on existing servers, better AFK detection, aggressive assault campaign on bots and gold spam and more restrictive acceptable AFK conditions. As a Patron, my 3 to 4 hour queue has reduced to 20 to 30 minutes if I log in before primetime NA. Primetime has gone from 5 to 6 hours, down to 1 to 2 hours for Patrons.
I sometimes feel as though I’m scurrying all over the place trying to achieve my AA goals while also having fun. My game play experience is precisely what I expected it to be minus the queue drama. And I have no regrets about having purchased the Archeum Founders pack to gain access to alpha and I will be subscribing once the paid subscription time bundled in that package has expired.
Although I wasn’t able to acquire property in any of my preferred locations, due to the game crashing while I was in route causing me to land in a 6 hour queue, I’m relatively happy with what I was able to claim. Both of my 16x16 houses are constructed and producing my smaller harvestable items such as grain, cotton, chickens and grapes. My 8x8 farm in Solzreed produces lumber and olives. Between those three properties, I manage all of the components I use to craft trade packs, which are the lion’s share of my income.
My primary focus at the moment is to save up enough gold to craft the new Farm Cart. Having one will be a huge time-saver as it would let me transport three trade packs at once. As the demand for the rare Thunderstuck log needed to craft the item out paces availability, the prices will skyrocket. Right now a smaller percentage of the player base can afford to own/craft such an item so the asking price is under 200 gold but won’t stay that way much longer.
Something new – Livestock
All during Alpha the only livestock I raised where chickens and the occasional turkey or pig for leather. This time around I’ve invested in more costly livestock for two reasons. First is that I started off wearing cloth and decided to pursue tailoring as a profession. You can create more fabric faster and easier by using wool than cotton. Wool also sells for more on the Auction House if you’d like to sell some of your surplus for gold.
Second, I’m to be able to produce my own yarn, often needed to craft furniture in the carpentry profession. Buying yarn on the AH can be VERY expensive since it’s also used by Handicraft, in fishing rods and to make bows. In order to craft yarn you need fur from goats, bears and yatas. None of which are cheap to purchase and feed. Bears cost 4 gold a piece from the Livestock merchant. All of these need to be fed ‘combined feed’ which is 3-5 gold per 100 on the AH.
For these larger animals I’m using my 16x16 in Gwenoid Forrest, where I also use half the plot for trees. I sell half of what I harvest in raw form, crafted items or in its processed form depending on which yields the best profit on the AH that day. The other half I use for my own crafting needs.
I haven’t been doing a lot of crafting yet. I’m using all of my labor and the vast majority of my time earning the gold I need for the farm cart. However, I was able to craft a full set of tier 2 green quality cloth for my character. And when I decided to see if I liked the class better wearing plate, I was able to do the same. For this reason, I find the crafting in AA to be immensely rewarding.
It still amazes to me that the very first time I walk to a crafting station to make gear, I can make a full set that has better stats than my questing armor and weapons. Yep, I’m diggin’ the removal of creating 1k foozles of crap before I can make the “good stuff”. That said, the components at T3 and above are harder and more expensive to obtain but remains rewarding in my eyes.
Don’t get me wrong, some professions such as Alchemy and Cooking will feel like a grind because of the amount of items you must create to progress. However, the items you’re creating are desired and will sell on the AH. You’ll also want and NEED to be using them yourself when you’re doing instanced content. From what I’ve seen, there are no throw-away crafting recipes in AA.
Wide Open Spaces
AA feels big, wide open and full of possibilities. Until a couple of days ago I was running trade packs on my donkey and using my rowboat to travel from Solzreed to Two Crowns. The opens waters are a very scary place in a rowboat, let me tell ya! I don’t see Jellyfish that often on this particular route but just one would be a problem in a rowboat.
It’s the other players that pose the biggest threat in a wee sailing vessel. I’ve had players attempt to glide off nearby rock formations to catch me. I’ve had players in Clipper sized ships attempt to harpoon me, in order to drag me out to where they can gank me for the pack or capsize me for giggles. Luckily, no one was successful. I knew going out in a rowboat with a trade pack was taking my life into my hands so I tried to keep it to off hours as much as possible.
Using the rowboat is much faster than the land route and as I said, I am racing the gold. A couple of days ago I decided to put in the time to earn the Gilda Stars needed to purchase a Clipper ship and suck up grinding out the materials to construct another huge item. I was pretty worn out on it from doing two houses in such a short span of time. Not to mention that caring for 4 different properties consumes a lot of time and labor.
On Monday I decided to suck it up and get it over with as fast as possible. By Tuesday I was building my Clipper and able to head out on trade runs in a safer manner. That hasn’t’ stopped gank attempts – from above and on the water. For now the gods are in my favor and I haven’t suffered any losses.