Yes, the same guy with to much time on his hands and to much trivial knowledge is back to either make you groan in frustration as he tells you things you already know, or make you go "I did not know that! Why didn't anyone tell me!"
Hopefully for my sake more of you fall in the second category than the first. I hate dodging digital tomatoes….
Adventuring, at some point while playing this game we ALL do it for some reason or another. It is one of the corner stones of the game, to go forth and smack orcs over the head for their copper and some times silver coins. To learn that the mob that we just attacked had five buddies around the corner and one of them is a heroic. To enjoy the aggravating fun of the rez button as it pops up one more time because some one pulled to much agro.
Come on, you gotta laugh, its just a game after all.
What I'm planning here is to give some advice to all of you out there who walk the wild side of the game and risk digital life and limb, advice that just could make it harder for you to die, get you on your feet faster between fights and just maybe make you a better solo'er and group member as well.
As before I'm not going to go into any class specific tips, suggestion, armor/spell set-ups or anything like that, this will be information that, hopefully, can be applied to every class.
Yes, this is the first bit of advice that I have to give out, no matter how good your gear is, how powerful your weapons, spells, combat arts and so forth are, at some time you are going to loose a fight. Relax, remember this is a game; it's how we respond to failure that marks how good we really are. Don't blame some one, even your self, that dose nothing. If you know what happened, point it out and say how it could be avoided in the future. If you don't know what happened, ask what happened and what could be done to avoid it in the future.
Going around screaming about getting killed will only drain some of the fun out of the game. I always try to put a funny spin on to it personally, crack a joke if you can, smile, relax you will do better next time if you are calm.
No I am not about to tell you what kind of gear you should use if you want to be uber leet and supa haxxor so you can pwn tha noobs.
What I am going to tell you is to keep in mind what kind of gear you are using, and the stats they affect and your play style.
Every class has two primary stats, stats that define their character class. However what can easily be forgotten is that there are other stats that can help you out if you keep them up, or be a pain if you let them drop to far.
Yes, you want your main stats to be high, so go out and get that set of handcrafter armor that suits your class best, buy all of the same line even. However keep in mind your other slots like your belt, your rings, your earrings, and so forth.
My suggestion is to have half of these slots filled with items that effect both your primary stats possible and the other half with items that affect your other stats. That way you're not vulnerable in one area.
Mix and match your accessories, it is a very useful way to go in my opinion if you are a big solo'er
Now if you're the type to group a lot, then this becomes different, for some classes you will still want to keep your stats well rounded, like on the main tank and the back up tank. However if you are the guy who stands back, praying that the tank can keep the agro off you as you nail the mob, then you may want to focus your gear more upon your primary stats. In a group, if you have a stat or two that is low on your priority with a low rank it is not often as fatal as it is to the solo'er
Now to make use of this part you are going to have to go out and do research on your class. This can be hard to do, I know, I've pounded my head against that brick wall with my shadow knight for years now. Which brings us to my next part.
My advice, forget looking on the forums, toss that idea right out of your head and reject every suggestion that tells you to look on the forums. It is a sad fact that the majority, if not all of them are simply filled with people saying that their class is to underpowered, other classes are to over powered and how the game hates them.
And semi-useful information has been copied from one place and posted into another, making it seem like there is only one option for that class.
I suggest looking in game on your server for other people who play your class and asking them for suggestion. Tell them your play style, level, your achievement point total and so forth if they offer to help. Offer to send screen shots if they are willing to give you an email, and you are willing to have them know yours. The BEST advice I have received on playing any class I have tired my hand at has come from other players in the game. However there are things you should look for to know if you are getting good advice.
First off, dose the person start complaining about how weak the class is and suggests that you play something else? If they do, find some one else. This is not going to be a source of good information, if you get any at all. Usually they will refer you to the forums.
Second, do they give you options on your build or do they tell you to only go one way? If they don't give you any options, then you are going to be forced into a play style that you may not enjoy. If they give you options for your class build they are giving you good advice.
Third, do they refer you to another person? This is actually a good thing to hear, it means they know some one who is better able to help you than they are, in fact that person probably helped them in the first place.
Now then, on to things I can give everyone specifics for.
Items, we all have them, even your gear is an item, but the kinds of items that I'm going to talk about here are not the ones you wear, in fact these are items that you can run out of, and will run out of.
That's right, consumable items.
These items fall into two different categories in my opinion, downtime reducers and damage reducers.
You probably use a few of these already in fact. Food and drink are the two most commonly used downtime reducers in the game. They increase your health and power regeneration by a fixed amount ever few seconds and some of them also boost your stats by a small amount as well. You should always carry food and drink on you, but for the love of your coin supply turn off auto consume. It will break your characters wallet faster than your repair costs. If you are standing around, waiting for your group or raid to get moving, the timer still ticks down on them, if you are standing around for a long time you may even go threw extra food and drink with out getting any use of it. Wait until you get moving then manually consume your food and drink.
As it stands now you can actually use food and drink from the tier above yours and receive a better benefit than the food and drink that is actually meant for your character level. If you have the option, I suggest going with the higher tier food and drink, but no more than one tier above yours, any higher and the benefits do not increase.
The next set of down time reducers are less commonly used from what my experience has shown me. Power and health regenerating totems. These items only have a 30-minute duration, each one can only be used five times and they do not stack, resulting in carrying around a fair supply of them taking up a lot of your inventory.
Despite this they are great items for one simple reason. They stack with food and drink. That right, you can gain power and health regeneration from both power and health food and drink and power and health totems. This can make your power and health regenerate much, much faster, allowing you to get back into a new fight sooner, leaving you with less time to drum your fingers on the desk as you wait.
Potions. The prime sources of damage reducers are potions made by players.
Potions can be used to cancel damage over time effects, give you in combat health and power, both as a strait shot and as a duration effect, and even increase some of your stats as well.
Potions are color coded now, with each color telling you if they stack with another potion, rather than trying to type it all out for you here, I have dug up a link that dose it far, far more easily that I could ever hope to achieve. The guide they made is color-coded which will tell you at a glance what potion is usable at the same time with the same potion.
Pick one from each color and carry a stack around with you, except for the Remedy's, I would actually suggest bringing along all of them, despite the fact they are all on the same cool down timer, if you can figure out what kind of damage over time spells the mob you are fighting is using, you will have that potion on hand to counter it. Better than keeping it in your bank, where it dose you no good, or sitting in the broker, un-purchased.
It takes a little work to know which one to use, but if you get good at it, it will reduce the amount of damage you will take, making the job of keeping you alive easier, as a solo'er and in a group.
Oh, and here is that link I promised you. Did you think I forgot? http://eq2.eqtraders.com/articles/article_page.php?article=g74&menustr=040000000000
If you are one of those people, who like me, go around doing most of your adventuring by your self, then I have a few tips for you.
First off, make plenty of uses of the stuff in Part 4 – Useful Items. When you are alone reducing you're down time as fast as possible and reducing the amount of damage you take is key.
Also keep in mind the fact that mobs can typically run faster than you, even if you sprint, even if you are mounted and that it dose not cost them power. Learning the agro range, the distance they will follow you after you get in a fight with them, is important. If you are unsure you can take a mob, pull it in from range and try to back up a little bit every now and again, getting closer and closer to the limit of the mobs range, that way if you have to run, you don't have to run as far.
This is about it for the advice I can give to you for soloing; most of it comes down to class specific tactics that defeat the purpose of listing here in a general guide
Well, this section is going to be longer because there is so much information that it is clear that people do not know. A lot of us have experienced it, PUG's. This word is either preceded or followed by a varity of swear words, and just incase you don't know what PUG means; it stands for Pick Up Group. A random collection of players who until that point in time have never met, and likely never will again.
The reason PUG's are considered so horrible is because people a) do not know what I'm about to say here, or b) don't use it because they think that the rest of the group wont use the information I'm going to say here.
1) Know where you are going and what you are doing. You will be surprised on how many groups fail because no one knows what the group is suppose to be doing. Clues to look for that show that the group dose not know what they are going to do are easy to spot. “Well, we are just going to kill stuff”, “I don't know” and answers that involve zones that you are not even in.
2) Know who your main tank is. Really how obvious is this. Find out who your group's main tank is, even if it turns out it is you, and set up an assist macro. This can be done by hitting O on your keyboard and creating a custom emote using the command option and entering /assist . If you are the tank, please ask that everyone assist you and keep an eye on the health of your party members, if they start loosing health, they have gained agro and you need to assist them as quickly as possible and get the agro back on you. You can also assist some one by hitting the F# key for their spot in the group, like F4 or F2.
3) Make use of the stuff in Part 4 – Useful Items, if you can take some of the strain off your groups healer it means he can keep you alive easier and your group can get back in the fight sooner because the healer has not burned up all their power.
4) If you get agro, let the group know and move over to the main tank. DO NOT run around in circles and try to get away from the mob, they can run faster than you and can use all their combat arts and spells while in motion. If you run, it makes it that much harder for the tank to get agro off you because you keep moving out of range. It also makes it more likely that you will pick up additional agro from other mobs, making it more and more likely that you, and the entire group, will die.
5) Ask if it is alright for you to use your mount. Some people are driven completely nuts by everyone using their mount in combat because it makes it harder for them to target the mob so they can attack it. The only exception to this rule should be the main tank, a lot of mounts that you can buy also provide buffs to the person riding it, buffs that can reduce the damage the tank takes if the right mount was selected.
6) If the majority of your group is using a mount, and you do not like it because you can not target the mob, please do remember that you don't actually have to “see” the mob to hit it, just hit one of your F# keys or your assist macro so you can target the mob. A lot of mounts out there provide some very good buffs to the person riding it.
7) If you are using a mount, and have the room to do so, back up a bit now and again so that its easier for others to see the mob, your actual melee range is fairly long so you do not need to be right on top of it to be able to attack. Also if you have access to an item that will shrink your size, make use of it. If you are smaller, it will make it easier for others to target the mob and it will not effect your stats or movement speed.
8) Looting. This is one of the MAJOR complaints that crop up in PUG's. People looting during combat, and people rolling need on everything that comes up. If you loot during combat it pops up a window on everyone's screen, and it is almost always in the worst possible spot at the worst possible time. Wait until combat is over, if that mob has loot on it, it will stick around for a while, and if doesn't, it was only a bit of coin and vender trash. The good stuff drops in chests that stick around a very long time. If you spot some bit of loot that you can use on another of your characters, ask if it is alright for you to roll need on it for that reason. Some people will be cool with it, other times you will have several people in your group who need it and are on their main characters. If you accidentally click need and get the item, offer it to the person who came in after you on the loot roll and let them know it was an accident, most people will understand and will move on if you do both of these things.
9) Do not go charging off all by your self. This is the second most common complaint about PUG's, stick with your group, keep your hands and feet inside the ride at all times. If there is an area you want to check out, tell the party and tell them why you want to check it out. Most groups will be willing to check out areas that they have not been to, or areas that members of their party have not been to.
10) Remember your roll in the group. If you are the healer, please for the love of your group's blood pressure, do not try to tank that mob and please keep up with the group, and please remember to heal. Yes, I have actually be in PUG's where our healer did not heal, he tried to DPS because he though that he had to fight the mob in order to get Xp for the kill. However, healers are usually fairly good about paying attention and healing. I just used healer here as an example because “usually fairly good” dose not mean all the time and I have seen some EPIC failures in healers like the example I gave above.
11) Watch your agro! SOE just put in a tool that lets you monitor your agro with a given mob, make use of it, if your getting up there in the hate, stop attacking for a little bit, let the tank get the agro back, which will reduce your agro in turn.
12) Incase of death or group wipe; do not start screaming that it is so-and-so's fault unless you can seriously back it up. If you can't back your claim up, well I hate to say it but it usually means it was YOUR fault, not the other persons. If your going to blame the healer, stop and check your combat log, I have mine trimmed down so I can review it and check if the healer was doing his job or not because the healer gets blamed so often its not funny, followed right behind blaming the main tank, and blaming the shadow knight for not healing
13) If you get lucky and you find a good PUG, by all means, ADD THEM TO YOUR FRIENDS LIST. That way you know when they are on and you can see about grouping with them again. That takes them out of the PUG category and could lead to a great team.
Remember, please for the sake of your own enjoyment of the game and the enjoyment of the game by others remember this one bit of knowledge, knowledge that will take you far beyond any other bit of advice I could ever give you, or that you can be given by anyone else.
It is a game, it is meant to be fun. Try to have fun with everything you do in the game no matter your play style.
Solo'er Grouper Raider PvP'er PvE'er RP'er Uber haxxor'er
It doesn't matter. If you are not having fun, and the people around you are not having fun, then what is the point really? Games should be fun, a way to relieve stress, a way to crack a smile, whip out a funny story with your fellow players, something to look forward to.
Go, play, have fun.
Reins and repeat
I do hope that this has been useful on many levels for you all. Everything I have gone over here are things I have seen time and time again that people have forgotten, everything.
In a way, it's a bit saddening that some of this is forgot, more so Part 7, because in my opinion that is THE most important part. If it's not fun, it's a job, even worse than a job, because it is one you have to pay to go to.
The adventure is yours, as is the fun of it.