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GU60 Crafting Preview

Game Update 60 "The Children of War" will be released on May 31, 2011. As you can tell from the date that this article was created, Mum is cutting the timing of the preview close, and there won't be any story this time. While I'd love to assume that folks have already read the patch notes from Test that were posted just over a month ago, I know people miss things, so here goes my brain dump, assisted by those patch notes, of things of interest that I found.

Quick Crafting/Housing Summary

  • Ratonga are now a neutral race, and can start in good cities - prezzies available for a limited time!
  • You can now repeat the crafting quest in the Enchanted Brownie Grotto as many times as you like (Check the details section on this one for information on another lovely grotto surprise!)
  • You can now fly in Rivervale.
  • Crafting writs: Level 15 work orders have been added to help novice crafters bridge the gap between crafting quests. Level 70-79 writs are now available every two levels.
  • Harvesting: Base harvesting speed changes, harvesting tools also change, as does your chance to gain a harvesting skillup. Qho's mom also sends you a bit of mail. Nektulos Forest nodes respawn a bit faster. Rivervale harvesting gets a facelift.
  • Recipe Books: Emerald Halls dropped recipe become buyable. Sentinel's Fate faction recipes become heirloom.
  • Velious Crafting quests: Mira opens up a new questline for crafters who have already helped her. There is also a new questline involving Drunder and some new recipes from Drunder drops ... and maybe a house item or five!
  • Coldain Prayer Shawl - now with proc message goodness!
  • Adornments - several changes with tooltips, icons and such (i.e., mostly cosmetic or look/feel changes). Also adornments added to many Golden Path quests
  • Housing - a peek at two new prestige homes (one raid drop, one unknown availability)
  • Odds & Ends: mender bot cast speed reduction, hex of discord debuff change, upcoming world event notification

Details

Ratonga

The Ratonga have mysteriously begun appearing within the city of Qeynos. This event has been noticed by citizens of Qeynos, and rumors have begun in Freeport. Some of the citizens have begun to speak of the incident.

Not only will the sage NPCs that sell quest books have a new book, but there are also some limited-time goodies to be had to celebrate the infesta-, erm, to welcome the rats to Qeynos. SOE is billing it as "Celebrate with the Ratonga" and has this to say:

...Visit the sages in South Qeynos and North Freeport to purchase “Out Of Necessity,” a book of ratonga history that scholars have recently unearthed. And celebrate the arrival – or departure – of your ratonga neighbours by visiting the Station Marketplace to collect a ratonga illusion and “Seeker of Cheese” house pet, both free for a week only, starting on May 31st. Be sure to check out the new Ratonga Heritage Armor and Underfoot Cheese Plate while you’re there!

Mmmm, cheese ...

Grotto Goodness

The faun elder in the Enchanted Brownie Grotto will now reward you for as many barrels of root beer as you care to brew up, you are no longer limited to just one per month.

More tokens during the Moonlight Enchantments events are always a happy thing for decorators. If you missed my "Floored" article a bit ago, there are also new floor tiles available starting with the next Moonlight Enchantments (June 20-21).

Fly, Be Free!

You can now fly in Rivervale.
Such a seemingly little thing to bring about so much rejoicing. Those who are slaving ... um, assisting ... Qho, however, will celebrate anything that makes harvesting in that zone easier! There's more on easier Rivervale harvesting down in the harvesting section, too!

Crafting Writs

Since the introduction of quest experience being the major method of leveling tradeskills and moving away from pristine combines, a gap was left around level 17. It was found that tradeskill quests propelled you on your way with plenty to do, but when you got to around level 17 a gap of no directed content was found. To counter this, level 15 tradeskill writs have been implemented for craftsmen, outfitters, and scholars. This will give you something to work on until you hit level 20 and continue on the quest progression, and also lets you start earning status for your guild a little sooner.

One level 15 crafting work order has been added. This is a regular (untimed) work order, not a rush order. It definitely sped up the leveling between the end of the and the Butcherblock Mountains crafting quest line when I tested it with a Craftsman. She ended up having to do one food combine, one furniture combine, and two wooden weapon combines per writ.

Level 70-79 tradeskill writs are now available every 2 levels, similar to the level 80+ writs.

A while back we were told that they'd look into redoing some of the earlier tiers of crafting writs to be more like the level 80+ ones, and here's the next tier down changed for us.

Harvesting

First, let's start with the patch notes, since there's quite a bit of explanation already written out in them:
  • While looking at harvesting it was found that it was taking too long at lower levels which made it an undesirable activity to take part in. The base harvesting time has been reduced to 3 seconds. To make this work, the harvesting time reduction of harvesting tools needed to be lowered. These tools are available at 20, 30, 40, 50, and 70. Their harvest time reductions have been lowered to .1, .2, .3, .4, and .5 seconds respectively. This means the time to harvest at 20 can be 2.9 seconds down to 2.5 seconds at 70+. Compare this with the old time at 20 which would be 4.5 seconds and down to 2.5 seconds 70+. Half Elf, Sarnak, Human, Dwarf, and Wood Elf traditions that granted harvesting time reductions have also been halved.
  • While harvesting, it was found that leveling up your adventure or tradeskill level was much faster than gaining skill ups for harvesting. This would leave you in lower level tiers harvesting until you had enough skill to move into the next tier. This is because the chance to gain a skill is based on a ratio of your skill against the skill of the harvest node. This chance to gain skill has been increased by between 20 and 30% based on your ratio.
  • A new first time event has been created for the first time you harvest a harvest node. You will be sent an in game mail from Lian Augren who will ask you to come visit her son on the Isle of Mara who is interested in harvesting. The intent is to make sure that harvesters are aware of the Gathering Obsession questline from the beginning of their harvesting career rather than finding him later and having to do backtrack harvesting.
  • Harvest nodes in Nektulos now respawn faster.
  • The fishing speed reduction on the Collapsible Fishing Tool is now 1.5 seconds down from 2.5 seconds. Since harvesting speed is 3 seconds and 1.5 seconds is the new cap it will function like it did previously where it reduced from 5 seconds to 2.5 seconds.
  • Woodworker created harvesting tools are now a single tool at each tier, instead of 5 individual tools. If you have one of those 5 tools it has been automatically converted into a “Harvest Kit” that affects every harvesting type. The new Harvest Kit tools will be less that you have to carry around, and will stack with Tinker made harvesting tools. These tools also now have a chance to double harvest.
  • Harvesting in Rivervale has been completely revamped. Nodes now appear in certain areas (instead of on top of houses ). For example, gardens spawn on green grass or in the fields, stones appear near man-made structures, and dens appear near wolves or other den creating creatures. This zone should be much more harvestable for those who do not have any adventuring experience.

{deep breath} Ok, the main thing to take from this is: a) harvesting at lower levels will be less painful, with a starting base harvesting time of 3 seconds, b) 1.5 seconds is now the fastest you can harvest (accomplished by stacking tools, etc), c) woodworker-made harvesting tools for all tiers are now all-in-one, saving you space (already-made ones with convert to the new ones automagically), woodworker-made harvesting tools will now also give a double ("ample") harvest bonus - see below, d) the effects on tinkered and woodworker harvesting tools can stack (so you can have the ample harvest from the woodworker one, and the skill increases from the tinkered going at the same time), e) your harvesting skills will improve more quickly, and f) harvesting in Rivervale for that demon-child Qho should be a bit easier

  • 20: Ash Harvesting Kit: 2% Double Harvest, .1 second reduction in all harvesting times.
  • 30: Briarwood Harvesting Kit: 4% Double Harvest, .2 second reduction in all harvesting times.
  • 40: Teak Harvesting Kit: 6% Double Harvest, .3 second reduction in all harvesting times.
  • 50: Sandalwood Harvesting Kit: 8% Double Harvest, .4 second reduction in all harvesting times.
  • 70: Redwood Harvesting Kit: 10% Double Harvest, .5 second reduction in all harvesting times.
  • 80: Compact Redwood Harvesting Kit: 13% Double Harvest, .5 second reduction in all harvesting times.

Oh, right. About Qho. It seems that some folks don't know who Qho is, or why they'd want to help him. Or, so thinks his mother. So, the next time you harvest after the patch, she is going to send you email, just to make sure you know about her precious son. We need more of us in straightjackets because of his quests. {nodnod} As an apology for bothering us, especially those of us who already know about his quests, she sends along a potion with a bit of a harvesting boost, too.

If there is anyone actually reading this entire preview and paying attention, there will also be some neat site-related Qho news in the next day or two!

Old Recipe Books - New Changes

  • Koros Splinterlimb on the Isle of Mara has gotten in some new stock! He now sells recipes that were only previously found in The Emerald Halls. He has also gotten in some new Return to Mara trinkets that allow players with tradeskill level 20 and higher to use it. A similar change to recipe merchants is that the Sentinel’s Fate Hua Mein, Quel’ule, and Kerra merchant “Secrets of” recipes are now flagged heirloom.
  • These are pretty self-explanatory.

    The raid zone Emerald Halls has had recipe drops (as well as the needed special ingredient drops) for quite a while. Getting those recipes into the hands of crafters has been a pain, however. This will make it a bit easier for folks, providing they have the Far Seas Supply Division faction and tokens.

    The Sentinel's Fate faction recipes, which have been no-trade, are being changed to heirloom, so you only have to really grind each faction once, if you haven't already done so (or done so times nine, like Mum :D)

    The Return to Mara trinket is a reduction in the crafting level required to use the trinket (i.e., he already sold this item, but now you can use it as low as level 20).

    Prayer Shawl Proc

    Did your crafting combine just finish quickly, or was that a shawl proc in action? Sometimes it can be hard to tell, so now, when your Blessed Coldain Prayer Shawl proc fires off, you'll get a message that it did so.

    New Velious Crafting Quests!

    There are two new crafting quest series being added in Velious.

    First, Mira (an othmir-lady in Fina's Retreat that you meet in the Iceclad Ocean crafting quest series) sends the experienced crafter off to help the other othmir camp - the one in Eastern Wastes. (I will do a full writeup on the quests in the next few days.) You really want a flying mount before you do these, to save yourself some serious headaches and/or creative summonses by your friendly neighborhood conjuror. Crafters who are squishy on the adventuring side of things can also do these quests. (Been there, tried that, lived to tell the tale!) Rewards include Othmir Artisans faction (but there is still no use for said faction!), crafting xp (if you're not maxxed), AAxp, and a few house items. (A shell that acts as a port to Eastern Wastes othmir camp, a rake, shovel and flute, with the ability to make more of the rake and shovel).

    There's also some storyline involved, letting crafters see a bit of the hubub and disturbance caused by the appearance of the new Drunder zone. You will even get to travel inside to take a peek at the quest hub area. A placeholder for the quest series writeup can be found here

    And, while you're in the Drunder quest hub, you find a second crafting quest series, involving some of the beings imprisoned there.

    When you get through that questline starting in Drunder, you earn the ability to buy recipe books that make use of the Drunder-dropped "Aspect of War". Books are heirloom, level 89, and there are a couple that are Artisan (all-class), then one specific one for each crafting class. The item breakdowns in the class-specific ones are just like the Forgemaster books, so alchemists make rings, sages necklaces, etc., etc., etc. Since there are only 2 symbol slot items for the carpenters to make, they also get 5 more furniture recipes that use common T9 harvests. The furniture includes: Rallosian low divider, Rallosian tall divider, Rallosian weapon rack, Rallos's Blessing, Conquering the Wastes. A placeholder for the quest series writeup can be found here

    Rallosian tall divider, Rallosian weapon rack, Rallosian low divider. Note that the top of the tall divider has the same ornamentation as the low divider, it is just buried in the ceiling of this inn room when not resized
    Rallos's Blessing, Conquering the Wastes

    Adornments

    • Item adornment icons have been updated to represent slot colors and adornment types.
    • Items may now have multiple adornment slots with the same color.
    • Adornments can be applied by clicking the slot inside the item examine window.
    • Adornment rewards have been added to over 100 quests on the Golden Path!
    • Item tooltips and examine windows have been modified to represent adornments with icons, instead of text.

    I know this is going to be a point of confusion for many, and I just pray I help clear some of the confusion instead of adding to it.

    As crafters, you should know that how you make adornments, and what those adornments do are not changing. ZERO changes on that front. No changes to recipes, no changes to what crafted adornment has what bonuses. Really. Truly. (Folks have misread the Test patch notes a lot already, and been asking about this on various crafting channels.)

    Icons for adornments change. Slots for adornments change in looks on an item examine window, and in some cases, items get added adornment slots. Applying adornments is also easier.

    Rather than "Slot: White" and that sort of thing, when you look at an item you will see an actual icon of a slot (or two or three). The slots are colored, though the tinting is faint enough that I expect some confusion over white (crafted or quest reward) vs yellow (mark/shard purchases, etc.) until folks get used to it.

    This is one place where pictures definitely help:

    Above you can see: the new icons in the recipe book, the new examine window, then the slot icons in action, first on a piece of mark of manaar armor with an empty white and an empty yellow slot, then on a piece of PQ armor with a filled white and an empty yellow slot.

    With regards to the Golden Path quests and adornment rewards, I didn't get a chance to poke at this due to time, but it means that players who follow the recommmended "Golden Path" when leveling alts, will be introduced to how handy adornments can be at lower levels. In theory, this will create more demand for lower-tier adornments, which is a "good thing" for adorners.

    Housing

    Two new prestige homes appeared on Test. The massive "Luxurious Kromzek Keep" home, with portals in South Qeynos and South Freeport will apparently be a raid drop. The "Thurgadin Grand Hall", with access through a new doorway in the Thurgadin Crafting area is reported to be available via a Station Cash purchase "soon". Want a bit of eye-candy from them? Will this do the trick?

    Odds & Ends

    • The Font of the Kromzek should no longer float slightly above ground level.
    • The Mechanized Platinum Repository of Reconstruction (repair bot) now has a cast time of 5 seconds and a cast visual attached to it.
    • Hex of Discord will now decrease the health of the target by 1.0%.

    Last But Not Least

    A world event is being tested on Test and Test_Copy to rebuild druid rings in Great Divide, and the Wizard Spires in Eastern Wastes. No release date has been given for it, and there is no crafting component. (/sadpanda) It is aimed at level 90 adventurers, but there will also be ground-spawn tokens for the squishies. I will do up a preview of it "soon" due to the house items that are available from from the token vendors. Along with some new house items are two new mounts, and many returning items from past events ... including the home teleport pads and the imperceptible beauty appearance items.

    That's All For Now!

    This, of course, doesn't cover all of the adventuring-related changes and additions that are part of this game update. Other sites, and the huge ream of patch notes, cover those already. Hopefully, however, I've sufficiently covered all the crafting/housing goodness, but I'll post an addendum here if anything major got missed.

    Quick Update

    If you have completed the Blessed Coldain Prayer Shawl, return to Tora (near the Ring War area), for an extra little surprise. Even though she has no quest feather over her head, chat with her, and she will give you five leftover Coldain Summoning Crystal house items. Shiny!

    Created: 2011-05-30 12:39:49          
    Last Modified By: Niami Denmother          
    Last Modified on: 2011-06-02 02:33:24          

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