Somewhere back in ages past – I bought a collector’s edition pre-order of Vanguard. That’s right, I played at the horribly bug-infested launch. I vaguely recollect that I was impressed by the game, despite the horrid early launch, but I only made it to about level12 on an Orc Dread Knight before going back to WoW. In 2010, maybe 2011, I went back after the server merges and found my names were all taken by higher level characters with the merges. And in a fit of pique I deleted my level12 Orc Dread Knight. Take that SoE!
So coming back to Vanguard has been a semi-newbie experience for me. The game isn’t much different from what it was at launch, but it is much smoother these days. Ockene already has a pretty nifty, and in-depth, rundown on the Isle of Dawn experience over at The Late Telonite, so I’ll gloss over that(also, I forgot to take screenshots during my level1 to 10 adventures).
I made an Orc Ranger, yeah pimp class combo, suck it World of Warcraft with your 6 homogenized classes! And after 20 minutes of playing with the character creation screen, Raitaro was born! And blam, off to the Isle of Dawn!
I spent 3 days on the Isle of Dawn, which is basically Newbie Island – a 10 level cap tutorial with some solid gear that you just didn’t get back at launch by those levels unless you spent hours harvesting and crafting. During that time I got my adventure and crafting levels to 10, and my diplomacy level to 4. Yeah, three separate advancement paths, each with their own levels, pretty nifty, and still unmatched by any other MMO(although I believe that EQ2 comes close with their two-fold system of crafter levels and combat levels). Two things to note: 1) Diplomacy is annoying, but fun, but hard, but confusing – you get the idea. 2) Crafting and Harvesting are mind-numbingly boring. The mini-game concept of crafting has never held much appeal for me. Really these are matters of personal preference, your experience may vary. Some people in General chat were saying they enjoyed the crafting mini-game and found diplomacy easy and fun.
The best part of the IoD was this nifty Diplomacy Wrist, which is apparently the best item in the game, and can only be obtained by new players who finish the IoD.
Note the combat boost from an item that goes on your diplomacy gear! Explanation incoming: With the three-sphere system of character development in Vanguard come four different gear sets, split up on five seperate tabs in the character window! Craziness, right? Diplomacy gear is worn on the diplomacy tab, and affects – you guessed it, diplomacy! Same for crafting, adventuring, and harvesting. The fifth tab is for mounts and saddlebags.
Also, I completed the temple quests, unlike Ockene, but really need to go redo them on an alt at some point so I can cover them in a post here. More on that when I do it, if I remember to or don’t just get busy and blow it off.
Next up, I’ll try to finish up the IoD diplomacy saga before going off the beaten path, and instead of taking one of the three areas recommended to me by the Rift Master, I’ll be going to find the Orcish Home City and Newbie area and doing the low-level quest chains there – a few hours of blowing through lowbie quests and I should be caught up on the originally designed Orc path to glory. I’ll try to get some good screenies and cover that in detail.