Why should you stop advancing your character in Allods Online just because you’ve hit the level cap? The game’s next major update is going to let you keep advancing with the introduction of new Spark Talents. Your Spark Level is unlimited, increasing steadily as you earn more Spark Experience; each level requires an escalating amount of experience, but the rate of acquisition is also slowly improving over time.
So how do you get this experience? By doing stuff, naturally. Daily adventures, winning rated combat, completing daily quests, and several other repeatable activities earn you more experience. You can also assign rubies to talents as your level increases, unlocking bonuses to item acquisition, special toys, and of course various bonuses to stats and special abilities. Check out the full rundown if you can’t wait to level up your character, only even more now that you finished the first round of leveling.
Ah, another day and another thing to enrage people in World of Warcraft. Last time, it was that the Allied Race unlocks might (will) require you to actually play the endgame a bit. This time, it’s that the refer-a-friend service no longer allows you to gain huge chunks of experience just for turning in a breadcrumb quest to arrive at a new zone. Or, alternatively, it’s that Blizzard has just noticed that a decade-old service could be used for some unscrupulously fast leveling roundabouts, and now that it’s sort of proud of the 1-100 leveling experience again, we can’t have that.
Much like the bit ages ago with Star Wars: The Old Republic and the pointless controversy over a cash shop lightsaber, this is one of those situations where everyone involved is being either willfully or unintentionally dim. It’s not that the players grousing about this are right, and it’s not that it was the right decision to make. So, just as I did for that, it’s time to sit both sides down and explain why this is dumb across the board.
So, were all of the experience boosts you had in World of Warcraft there to get your character to max level as quickly as possible, or were they there to ensure that you didn’t have to languish in zones where you were going to be leveling through awkwardly anyway? How you answer that question will make a lot of difference in how you see the changes made to the game’s Refer-A-Friend system, which has reduced the massive experience boost from the service from 300% to 50% and removed any stacking with heirlooms. In other words, at this point the biggest boost you can get to experience while leveling is 50% across the board, however you get it.
Considering that a referred character with heirlooms was often used as a quick way for a player to game the system with two accounts under the same person, this is obviously going to impact a portion of the player community. Some players are calling for a reduction in price for the level 100 boost token that also comes free with the Legion boxed expansion, claiming that this is just a way of forcing people to pay more to completely bypass the leveling process in short order. Others are pointing out that this plus the 7.3.5 patch changes means that you and your referred friend can both just enjoy the leveling experience together, moving faster but still being able to see a good chunk of the zone with players who may not be familiar with all of it.
In other and wholly unrelated news, there’s been a round of hotfixes to correct some bugs. Hey, we said it was unrelated.
If you’ve decided to hold off on buying the Destiny 2: Curse of Osiris DLC, good news! The game’s endgame is now locked away from you completely! Looking back, it’s unclear why we prefaced that by calling it good news.
Yes, the first DLC for the game is out now, and that means an increase to both the Power level cap and the addition of new endgame antics. However, if you don’t own the DLC, your Power level is capped lower than the required minimum… for activities that were present in the game at launch. The Heroic strike list also locks you out even though it has a Power level you can reach.
Obviously, the endgame activities for the game are meant to rely upon the most recent DLC, a common situation in more or less every MMO ever. That doesn’t make it feel less irritating when content that has been in the game since launch is suddenly inaccessible to you as a result.
It’s time to get better than you ever thought possible in the latest Revelation Online
patch. Heck, better than it was
possible to get, even; the patch raises the game’s level cap to 79
, allowing you to reach new heights of power even as you push your way through a new dungeon floor in the Mech Citadel on its Scour Dungeon version. There’s also the new Altar of Swords dungeon, the new Azure Dragon Guild tournament, easier soul grid unlocks… lots of nifty stuff, in short.
The patch also contains some fun flying sword mounts for being among the first to clear this new content, so if you’ve got a crew ready to take on these challenges you could be richly rewarded. (If you’d rather fly under your own power, we do still have dragon wings.) Combine that with a 24-hour sale in the game’s store, and you should be able to get at least a few nice rewards for yourself with the patch launch.
Artifact Power is the big power mechanism behind making your Artifact weapon more powerful in World of Warcraft. That seems pretty straightforward; it’s called “Artifact Power,” after all. It also has a complex relationship with Artifact Knowledge, as the cost of each new ability increases as your artifact grows in power. Eventually, you need your artifact to offer a several million percentage increase to each bit of Artifact Power so that it won’t take you years to get a quarter of the way toward your next trait. And actual Artifact Knowledge might be getting some big changes in the game’s next major patch.
Right now, you research Artifact Knowledge at a slow pace with order resources, while also being able to buy catch-up tomes for your alts. However, the current test realm has all of the research projects deprecated and an automatic increase to your knowledge as time goes by, thus ensuring that you catch up without any input. It also brings the knowledge cap back to 50 after it was unceremoniously rolled down to 40. How many of these changes will make it to live remains to be seen, but it would make for a very different leveling experience for your artifacts.
If you talked to Final Fantasy XI players, the Valkurm Dunes were the most dangerous place to be in the game. Really, it was just where everyone went to level from 10-20 or so… but that level band was where you’d find yourself with players who still knew little to nothing about the game, bored people just putting in their time, no option to Raise dead party members… lots of bad things, in short.
That is not, however, the only dreadful experience band in MMO history. I always dreaded bringing alts through the 80-85 band in World of Warcraft, simply because it meant some decently designed zones that were all part of a very disappointing expansion. (And they never really linked up or flowed nicely.) For that matter, I hate bringing classes through the 40-50 band in Final Fantasy XIV, and 10-20 in City of Heroes always struck me as kind of dreadful.
But that’s just a small sampling, and I have no doubt you have your own examples. What leveling experiences do you dread in MMOs? When do you feel you really have to steel yourself to get through the blander portions of the leveling process?
The second expansion for Final Fantasy XIV
is bringing more than just new abilities; it’s also bringing an extensive set of changes for existing abilities and classes. Yesterday’s live letter
covered the changes in brief, including the various job gauges for each job and the new role-specific actions for tanks, healers, and all three types of DPS. But perhaps you’d prefer to see these things in action? You can do exactly that with the latest job ability trailer and screenshots of the same just below.
The letter also revealed that PvP will be changed to have specific job layouts for PvP, with a small selection of traits and abilities replacing the existing system of PvP ranks and improvements. Players will also have access to jumping potions starting on June 16th, with one potion allowing you to level a specific job to 60 instantly and another allowing you to flag all of the MSQ as cleared up through Heavensward. Both will cost $25, so you can use them to speed your way to being ready for all of the new tricks shown below in Stormblood.
At least we’re finally thought the story. While we walk through a review of Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward
in its totality, we’ve taken three weeks covering all of the various stories within the expansion, as well as touching upon a bit of the class design in the last part. Parts one
, and three
cover everything from the main scenario to some of the zone side stories. And now we can move on to the mechanical side of things enthusiastically.
Also, we’re reaching the point where I know I’m going to forget to mention at least one or two things that were really keen from the expansion, but that’s a different discussion.
In terms of sheer volume, of course, Heavensward nearly matched what we got from the base game in terms of patches, and arguably surpassed it in some categories; sure, we only got 10 dungeons from patches rather than 15, but if you didn’t have any interest in Coil in 2.x, you got the entirety of Alexander, which was new. But volume alone isn’t the determinant of how good that content was. So let’s start in on that, albeit not with the dungeons.
The latest big patch for Blade & Soul has arrived, and it brings with it some major changes. Class trees and skill points, for example, are gone altogether. In the place of this progression system is a new one that’s meant to be more intuitive and streamlined. There are also new Hongmoon levels available, and you can earn them while exploring the new Celestial Basin region, so you’ll have plenty of time to decide for yourself if the changes are really a marked improvement or not.
The patch also adds two new dungeons, the depths of Naryu Sanctum and the heights of Mushin’s Tower for groups and solo players, respectively. There are also overhauls to items and the upgrade material system. Check out the full set of patch notes for more details on the changes, which are substantial; it’s going to make leveling a very different experience, but it looks like you’ll have plenty of extra stuff to do while leveling.
There is, really, no need to have a single alt in Final Fantasy XIV
. This makes it a point of open curiosity for me about how I managed to wind up with six
of them — plus my main character.
It’s not exactly a secret that FFXIV is not an alt-friendly game, and it never has been. Leveling alts is, by and large, a thankless and uncomfortable prospect mixed with the fact that a lot of the stuff you have to do on alts is a repetition of things that you have already done. The game doesn’t offer you any alternatives to the MSQ in the long run; you’re going to have to level through it, one way or another.
And yet people still play alts in the game; I know for a fact that I’m not the only person with more than one character at reasonable levels. And while there are things that could be done to make the game more alt-friendly, I suspect some of the obvious options would actually lead to a worse game overall, which makes “how can the game be more alt-friendly?” an interesting question.
You’ll earn experience by doing a lot of things in Revelation Online
, but don’t you wish that you could earn more
experience for doing the same
things? That’s where Aptitude comes in
. Aptitude is a constantly renewing resource, with characters receiving a certain amount of Aptitude on a daily basis, allowing for additional experience gains so long as there’s more Aptitude in reserve to be used.
What if you can’t log in for a bit? Well, your Aptitude continues to accumulate, and any “overflow” accumulated is stored by an NPC who will sell you that banked Aptitude, up to a daily limit. You can also purchase even more beyond the daily limit, but that will cost you. So you can catch up if you’re unable to log in for a little while or you can just enjoy the daily fruits of your login labor. (For a very generous definition of “labor” here.)
Currently, if you buy a new copy of Final Fantasy XIV
, you’re going to have to level up to level 50 and clear all of the subsequent storyline content that leads up to Heavensward
before you can, well, experience anything of Heavensward
. Once Stormblood
releases, you’ll need to level up to 60 and clear all of Heavensward’s
content. You get the general idea. Producer and director Naoki Yoshida
has talked about the potential to add in a “jumping potion” in the past, and he’s laid down a clear explanation of how such potions work in the game’s Chinese and Korean versions
(i.e., the two versions not on the same global servers with the Japanese/American/European player base).
Yoshida explains in detail how the potions work in these two versions of the game, with two separate potions in place – one completes the main scenario quests, while another one simply lets your job jump to the start of the current expansion for leveling purposes. In both cases, you still need to hit level 60 and clear Heavensward content normally. He then goes on to say that he’s considering when and if such potions will be implemented in the worldwide versions of the game, noting that he imagines it would be implemented between Stormblood and the subsequent expansion if he decides to go with it.