I know I’ve been writing a lot about BDO lately, but I’ve also been playing FFXIV just as much as always. I’ve just not had anything exciting to talk about since we’re all waiting for the patch to drop tonight.
However, over the weekend, I attended a couple of fun community events with my RP alt, Amon.
On Saturday, a FC I’m a part of on Marlboro set up what’s called a Full NPC Raid for Syrcus Tower. This means that we invited the players who have NPC characters or look-alikes to come and create a full pre-made raid party.
Of course, Amon had to be there, along with Syn on her Scylla character. But quite a few showed up! Enough for two full runs, in fact.
On Sunday, we attended a Hatching Tide art party hosted by another FC on the datacenter. The funky thing about this year is that Easter fell so early in April, I thought we wouldn’t be seeing a Hatching Tide event. Well, that was wrong – we’re getting one after the patch drops this week.
So may as well celebrate the new patch and have an art party!
Another patch is upon us next week, and it’s time for me to take a look at the 5.5 preliminary notes to see what interests me. As usual, this glosses over the stories/dungeons/raids because these are pretty much givens.
I’m going to let this be the stand in for all of the housing and decoration updates. There are a LOT of them, and all of them are really good. I like how different this housing exterior is, though I’d likely never use it myself – I only have a small house and this seems to take up quite a bit of yard.
Good updates to Triple Triad! I really need to play this again.
In particular, this is the Rainmaker hairstyle. I’m glad they’re putting it back in there for people who missed it because it was odd how it never returned for any of the Make it Rain Campaigns.
Very very nice and much needed! Thank you!
Also very nice. I really need to get back into fishing one day.
Okay. I REALLY need to get back on that boat. This sounds great!
This sounds like a lot of fun. I hope I can catch one.
These are both really cute mounts! I guess I’ll have to make an effort to get to these fetes!
I wonder if these will have something to do with the Ocean Fishing changes?
This is so so so nice! Thank you! Much needed!
Yes, yes, yes, yes to all of this! Thank you!
Nice for those Nier fans. I’ll pick these up, but I doubt I’ll put them to use, myself. Can’t knock the addition of new hairstyles, though.
Never had too much trouble with this before (unless there was a spinning tank), but any help is welcome!
Awesome! Keep going with this! I’ve needed to take screens in Fractal before and this would have come in handy!
Nice retainer changes! I still have some retainers that need leveling up, so this will be handy!
Another set of custom deliveries? I’m not against them, but it seems awful late in the patch cycle, especially one where we’ve already crafted quite a bit. I’m going to assume this is a follow up to the Firmament, which means I need to hurry up and get those quests done on three characters this weekend.
I wonder what this is about? It wouldn’t happen to be super expensive gil mounts, now would it?
Wait… wait.. what is this “Object” option you speak of? If it’s what I think it is, this could be AWESOME!
This is a nice option, but only relevant if you have 4 players already in your party (which we almost never do when I play). I’d love to see it where one day Leveling could understand this automatically when matching players rather than it just being a setting. But it’s a very nice option to have.
Actually, there was nothing that I saw that made me go meh this time around.
This patch has a lot of nice QoL stuff that we really need. I also see that it’s going to nudge me back into things like Triple Triad, the Firmament and Ocean Fishing. That’s not a bad thing — I’ve been needing new projects to think about. So this should be enough to keep me going until the expansion, though I know we have another half patch coming out between the two for story at least.
One thing I’ve learned about BDO is that you really need to pay attention to the details in the weekly Patch Notes. Events come and go quickly, they drop coupons for free items in the notes, and spend a good bit of time explaining important changes to the game – including this new Narchillan gear addition.
So why am I making a little bit of a fuss (in a good way) about Narchillan gear?
Well, due to the bonus XP event last month, I’ve gotten all of the characters that I’m going to level past 50 to at least 56. This allowed me to pick up the Oasis gear for them (which is said to be temporary). But in the meantime, I’ve been wondering what to do to gear up aside from that.
I’m pretty much a solo player and I don’t really need the top of the line gear because I don’t expect to be doing major end-game content in this game. In fact, if Oasis gear wasn’t temporary, I’d be just fine with it. But I have a feeling that with the introduction of Narchillan gear, Oasis gear is on the way out – or maybe they’ll just let us keep it, which would be nice.
Based on the guide I linked above, Narchillan gear ranks somewhere between DUO and TRI Blackstar gear. I believe Blackstar is some of the highest gear you can get right now, so for the ease and inexpensiveness of Narchillan, this is a really awesome set for someone like me who has nothing but Oasis.
I tested it out, and though you can only do the quests for each item once per family, you can bank the Narchillan gear and pass it around between your characters. Sure, this isn’t as convenient as having a set for each of them, but the fact that it isn’t character bound is what really motivated me to work on this.
To get Narchillan gear, you have to start a questline with Fughar – a deer-looking fellow that’s usually located near stables in the big towns. There’s a quest for each piece of armor (accessories are not included in this) and for one main-hand, off-hand and Awakened weapon. Weapons, obviously, can’t be shared across different classes, so this is the one you do have to make a choice on.
Basically, upgrade a piece of Naru gear to PEN and trade it for each piece of Narchillan gear. If you’ve tossed your Naru gear for any reason, you can talk to Fughar to exchange beginner black stones for those. It also takes beginner black stones to upgrade the Naru gear.
Because you can do quests for pieces individually, the best way I found was to look across all my characters and take inventory of the number of beginner stones they still have – lucky I kept most of them. Then, I spread out the upgrades across my characters as best as I could. So one character would upgrade the helm, another the chest, another the gloves, etc.
This was my first time upgrading gear to PEN. I learned a LOT about the upgrade system – and finally understand what Chron stones are for! I know that sounds silly as a player who has accumulated over 1,000 hours in this game…
But I just haven’t had a need to upgrade gear based on my playstyle so far.
I did run across an issue where I’d run out of black weapon stones at one point. I also ran across the issue where I’d tossed out all of my Canon Awakened weapons, which you need for the Awakened weapon trade-in.
Thankfully, I’d left off in the middle of my Awakened quest on one character. So I finished that up, got the Canon weapon for him, and traded it in. You receive a box instead of a weapon straight out, so you can put this box in the bank and it becomes the Awakened weapon of the character who opens the box.
Amon got the Awakened weapon since he’s been using his Greatbow from the beginning and Shai don’t have an Awakened weapon. I know it seems dumb to give my Shai the rest of the weapons, but she remains my main, even if she’s not as strong as some of the other classes in the game.
At this point, I feel as if the Narchillan gear has me set for whatever leveling I might decide to do eventually. But last month I’ve leveled so much that I’m giving BDO a bit of a break in that area. Most of my time this month has been spent running horses and sailing ships for fishing. But in time, I’m sure I’ll be using this gear for leveling of some sort, and I’m glad to have it.
Over the weekend, I had some time to begin exploring ships in Black Desert Online. I mainly wanted to try out AFK fishing in the Ross Sea, which I heard could be pretty lucrative.
Knowing this was not going to be fishing in a safe area, I chose to level a whole new character and stop her at 49 just to be my ocean fisher. I’m glad that I did – more on that later, though.
From the Shakatu’s seals we got during the transfer and anniversary celebration, I picked up a Epheria Sailboat. I have some interest in possibly bartering on down the line, but for now, I just wanted to try fishing in the sea off of Port Epheria, which I’ve heard was safe from monsters. This is because at level 49, I don’t believe my fishing character can actually work the canons on the ship and defend from ocean monsters. So sailing further and exploring all of that will have to be done on another character someday.
The actual mechanics of sailing are very easy in BDO. Nothing confusing about how to get the boat to move. You do have to buy “rations” while in port before the ship can leave the dock – I guess you can consider it like fuel in a way. There’s also a sailor system, but I didn’t look into that since I wasn’t planning on sailing all that far.
Once you get out into the Ross Sea (and beyond) you’re in uncharted territory. You have to uncover the fog of war on the map and you have no icon to know your location. You also can’t use the automapping features to get back to port. I think there’s a way to see where you are in the sea (compass?), though I never went deep enough that I couldn’t use island landmarks to get me back to port again.
My entire goal was to get one zone out, just a bit inside the Ross Sea, to fish. This “distance” would make the fish I brought back to port worth more. Also, out on the sea, fish seem always abundant, so AFK fishing was always at its fastest times.
My fishing character, Finch, went out there with zero fishing experience and a handful of buffs they’ve handed out over the past few weeks. After a couple sessions, she’s now mid-Skilled rank at fishing and has brought in over 9 million silver in fish profit alone (not counting the crystal shards I’ve sold). She is decently geared for lifeskilling with a Balenos +10 rod, so that helps lend to the leveling.
At first, I went back and forth on whether I wanted to use Finch for fishing as I did have Amon at Skilled fishing due to time he’s spent AFK fishing in Grana. Everyone I’ve heard from says not to worry about taking a level 50+ character out into the ocean – that people fish for hours and hours and have never seen a PKer.
My very first night fishing, I was sailing back for the dock to unload. As I did, I noticed a squat little boat attempting to cross paths with mine. I was on autopath, so I veered away a bit to give them room. That’s when I saw I was being targeted, and that ship fired canons at mine.
My ship took a bit of damage from the attack. But, they only fired on me once – my thoughts are they saw they couldn’t hit me and decided it wasn’t worth it to keep chasing. So I’m fairly sure they were after a PK there. Had I not be under level 50, they would have had their PK, or they would have beat up my ship pretty badly as I tried to escape. I have no clue how to defend myself on a ship.
I guess I keep running into these so-called rare PKers who don’t exist. This is the fourth time someone’s tried to kill me in this game. Only once has actually been successful – the time I dumbly went AFK horse training on a server that phased into Node Wars. I guess everyone can be killed in Node Wars, even if you’re under level 50. Had no idea – live and learn and stay clear of any server with a number 1 after its name.
Anyhow, the rest of the time I’ve spent out at sea has been uneventful. I’ve seen other ships in my area, likely fishing like I am, and no one has bothered me.
Though my first time out, I almost beached my own ship, which was extremely frustrating! I accidentally ran aground on a sand bar and couldn’t find a way off – not even jumping into the ocean and “calling” my ship worked. I began to think I’d have to buy that SOS loyalty item just to get free, but then a game blip disconnected me from BDO. When I logged back in, my boat wasn’t quite in the same location as it was before, and that gave me just enough wiggle room to rock it off the sandbar, thank goodness! Now, I’m super careful about coming near anything that looks like it could snag my ship underneath.
The only other exciting thing this weekend was getting my Narchillan gear quests done. I’ll have to talk about that in another post, however!
This is not an April Fools joke – this really happened yesterday!
On Tuesday night, I left a couple of BDO horses breeding – a T5 male and a T6 female (with the bleh ketchup/mustard coat). When I woke up the next day, I was greeted with my first ever bred T8 horse from the coupling!
Ever since I started breeding, back 5 years ago when BDO launched, it was my goal to breed a top tier horse. Back then, it was T7. Now the highest you can breed is T8.
The only thing about this horse is that she’s a T8 female. Why is this significant?
Below, you can see what I should be able to get from a max level T5 male and T6 female.
There’s an 8% chance of a T8 Male based on this, but NO chance of a T8 Female!
So not only was this an extremely lucky breeding, but it’s downright impossible… or just so improbable that it doesn’t even register on the calculator!
Anyhow. I was so excited to get a T8 of my own breeding (more on that later) and one of my favorite T8 coats, that I sat down and mapped out her family tree. It turns out that on both sides of her family, I can trace her lineage back to the two very first horses I ever captured five years ago!
The satisfaction in this is why I kept that silly spreadsheet all these years. That just goes to show you that you never know how things are going to play out until they do.
Dream Horse Progress
Kizmit isn’t actually my first T8 horse – I didn’t post about this yet, but last week I took my Shakatu’s seals and turned them in for a ship and a T8 horse (that came with one of the skills needed to become a Courser).
In BDO, to get a T9 horse – known as a Dream Horse – you first must have a T8 horse. You must then train them to level 30 and ensure they have all the proper skills to become what’s know as a Courser.
This is not easy to do. In fact, the guides say it’s nearly impossible to get an organic Courser considering all the RNG and the difficulty of learning the skills naturally.
I bought the T8 horse with all intentions of making it a Courser anyhow. She came with one of the rare skills already, and I had a stack of skill change coupons from various log-in rewards over the years. So I got to work on it.
The good: By the time she was level 30, she had enough skills to pull it off.
The bad: By the times she was level 30, she was missing ONE of the required skills needed even after several skill changes. And… I’d be lying if I said I didn’t throw some RL cash at the shop when the April fools mount skill change coupons went on sale.
Apparently, I got pretty lucky in the end because it can take quite a bit of cash for coupons to get what you need for the Courser. I had 20+ failstacks, I’ll tell you what, and I was starting to worry it wasn’t going to happen.
But then it did!
So now I’m taking her to Courser training and she’s on the very slow track to become a Dream Horse one day. I hope. This is going to take a lot of time and effort… but that’s okay. Since I just achieved one project – breeding my own T8 — this will be my next goal.
I’m not done by far, though. I’ve got a couple T7 males and I plan on training them and the two T8 females to hopefully produce more T8s if I’m lucky. At least more T7s. Either way, my breeding stock is slowly kicking out of the T5 territory and moving up into the T6-T8 area.
Eventually, I hope to provide pretty nice horses for all of my characters. I certainly know the worth of having a well-trained horse with the proper skills now.
March is already on its way out and April is right around the corner.
A number of unexpected things came up this past month that swayed me away from my gaming goals. But I don’t consider it a bad thing because I was having quite a bit of fun with what I was doing – leveling several characters in BDO, Mogtome runs in FFXIV and picking up mobile gaming for the first time in a while.
So let’s see what I did get around to doing.
Finish crafting relics on Main
Continue leveling Amon’s White Mage ✓
Start Shadowbringers on Ben ✓
I didn’t quite finish the crafting relics on my Main – I have 1 and a half more to finish. I am going to try to knock it out this week, though, just to clear up bag inventory. My motivation to finish those relics dropped off significantly when I learned the final step revolved around advanced crafting, which I don’t have any feel for and doubtfully have the melds to complete.
I finished leveling Amon’s White Mage to 80 just two days ago! It was a project started back in December when I decided I wanted to try to learn to heal. Now I’ve healed up through Orbonne and am choosing healer for Mogtomes runs to make the queue faster! I still have a lot to learn, but I’ve come a long way in the realm of White Mage, thanks mostly to my coach, Syn.
I did START Shadowbringers on Ben but I… didn’t get very far into it. I need to pick that up again.
Switch: Progress on Link’s Awakening
Play at least 1 new Steam game a week
Play at least 1 Xbox Game Pass game ✓
This is where I flagged this month. I did play my Xbox Game Pass game – Yes, Your Grace — for quite a few hours (and almost finished it). I only got in 2 Steam games – this was enough to nudge my “played” percentage up one, though.
Poor Link’s Awakening got pushed to the side, however. I need to try to do better by this game soon so that I don’t forget where I was when I next pick it up. I’ve made so much progress that I want to push through and finish it this time.
No April fools on this. I’ve decided to take a month off from goals. About this time every year I seem to get into this mindset where goals are more stressful than helpful. That’s how it felt in March when I had a lot of other gaming I wanted to do – and I foresee that carrying on into April.
So this month, I’m letting goals go until I feel the need to structure things again.
I had some pretty exciting things pop up in BDO (that I’ll talk about tomorrow) and I’ve found myself enjoying RO on mobile. So while I’m having fun, I just don’t see a need to organize my time right now.
Hope the start to your spring has been a good one!
It seems like every time I turn around, I learn something new about this game. It’s vast, and I’m still pretty new to it all myself, despite having played it on and off from back at launch.
The new Sage class launched last week, and I decided to roll one since I had the character slots to do so. It’s a pretty fun class – a heavy hitter, a bit slower than others, but definitely packs a punch in each blast. It’s also more flashy and colorful than other classes I played, and was pretty easy to breeze through to level 56 (yes again).
This time, though, I did something I hadn’t done before, though. I finally discovered the true “main story.”
In previous posts, I lamented the fact that so much of the original story was cut, and that I never saw how all the pieces came together. It turns out that this was absolutely user error on my part – but to be fair, the game wasn’t very clear about what choices I was making.
Me being me, I wasn’t sure that I wanted to pick sides with either character in this scenario – neither seemed to be in the right. So for time after time, I always chose the middle: Silence, We’re Done Here! and just shrugged them both off.
I found there was very little story in the second choice — and that’s for a reason. It’s the option to take if you just want to burn through the game through massive killing rather than be bothered by quests. Basically, an option for folks who’d already seen the story. The game warned me there would be more fighting if I chose that option, but it never warned me that I’d forego seeing the main story altogether should I go that direction.
On my Sage, I decided to do something different – I chose the first path. Then, lo and behold, the main story was there! Everything was actually making a lot more sense! The pieces I thought were cut out of the game from the old story were actually all there – cutscenes included. And I got to learn bout what happened to Edan and his company after all!
Needless to say, I was a much happier camper having discovered that this option finally told me the story that I’ve been so confused about all this time. I really feel that the game needs to make it very clear that the first option is the one you should take if you want to know the overarching story of this world.
Once I got my Sage to level 56 and dumped him in Altinova, I was left with a question of where to go next. I had obtained the Chenga Tome, which I’d used to help level my Sage as fast as I did, so I could always start questing on some of my characters while there’s still a level boost.
But I’m also interested in trying out sailing, ship bartering and ocean fishing. The only thing is, I’m worried about being PKed out in the ocean. I know, I know… folks say it hardly happens. But if I’m out there on a boat and I want to AFK fish, I don’t want to have to be worried I’ll come back to a dead character or a sunk boat because someone happened to see me and wanted to get luls.
I have enough of the Shakatu’s seals to get TWO Epheria Sailboats if I wanted (though I think I’m going to spring for one T8 Horse instead of two ships, maybe – I can always pick up a cheaper ship later, too).
I know that a character under level 50 can’t use the canons and can’t do all the dailies to learn sailing, but if my main goal is to just fish and barter for the fun of it… Well, long story short, I decided to roll another character just for that aspect of the game. So here she is!
If I want to get deeper into leveling sailing, I can always do that on a 50+ character. But I wanted to have at least one character who would be safe out on the ocean. I know that I already have a Tamer that’s under level, but really, I want to keep her where she is for horse training since that’s her focus.
I’ve gotten my Mystic up to level 48 as of last night, and once I hit 49, I’ll call it quits on leveling her and see what the ocean has to give. I found the job to be a real powerhouse and surprisingly a lot of fun at the early levels.
Oh, and for the record, I tried the third story path on my Mystic, but found it to be a bit more meh than the first path. It’s a different story, and much more focused on quests, but I’m not really into being a hired mercenary for a merchant guild (that treats my character poorly). Though, I guess it does fit this character’s backstory.
Last week, I got my third class – Wizard – to level 56 in Black Desert Online. I also finished up his Awakening and Succession quests since I’ve heard so much about “Succ Wizards” being amazing in this game. However, rather than push on to continue playing my Wizard, I decided to continue to take advantage of the 1000% XP bonus event, especially since on the weekend, it runs all day long.
When BDO first launched, I rolled a Warrior. However, upon returning and learning that my old Warrior would be locked into the old story line, I decided to delete him and eventually wanted to re-roll him. What little I did play of my first Warrior at low level wasn’t super impressive – I had a lot of trouble playing through things my ranged characters did not. So I wanted to see if that would be different given the new storyline.
Early Saturday afternoon, I rerolled my Warrior. I spent some time learning about his skills, and now that I have a better understanding of the game, I knew what paths to take to move through the main storyline most efficiently.
Warrior turned out to be a lot better at pack clearing than I expected. While I didn’t play BDO all day – I took some time out for FFXIV and Valheim – a bit after midnight, my Warrior was officially level 50.
Yep, you read that right. Burning through the main story quests with just a bit of mild grinding during this XP event got me to level 50 in way under a day’s time. It took me longer to go from 50 to 56, actually, but last night I finished that up and got him his Oasis gear.
On Sunday, I finally convinced Syn to try out BDO. She’d picked it up when it was free back during the anniversary event. Amoon has also been playing it since I have been talking about my return, so I rolled up a Clan just for us to communicate more easily.
She played a good chunk of an afternoon, and even as a brand new player moving casually through, she was able to level past 20 on her first day. So the XP bonus is real.
For now, I’m taking a break on leveling new classes. I only have two more character slots open as it is.
Tomorrow, BDO launches the newest class, the Sage. I’m curious about it and will probably roll one just to try it out. I’ll need to spend some time with it before I know if it’ll be another class I’ll take to 76 or not. Especially since everyone is going to be out there leveling theirs in a rush, too, which will make for contested mobs and quest areas.
I’ve been trying to throw as much time as I’m able at BDO each night while the 1000% XP boost is active. Earlier this week, I finished leveling my Archer, Amon, to 56. I got him his Oasis gear and went through his Awakening questline.
It was neat to venture into the realms of the Elves, which were his homelands, for the first time. I’m looking at some of the big houses there as a possibility for my main residence. The only problem is that the city feels so far away from everything else!
Overall, I enjoyed the Shai’s awakening quests more, but that’s to be expected.
The third character in my roster is Benjamin who was a wizard that I rolled not long after launch – back when they finally gave wizards a young appearance to choose from. This means that this character is locked into the original old main story quest line – something I didn’t know until I started messing around with him sometime last month.
Any characters rolled before the change to the main story retain the old main story up until you hit the quests for Mediah. At first, I thought to reroll him since he was only level 18 when I picked him up to level him for this event. But then, I decided I was curious to see how much the story had changed.
And boy has it changed quite a bit!
Not only does the old story take you through nooks and crannies (and stories related to these locations) that the new one never touches, but there’s lots of fully voiced cutscenes that were removed throughout the game as well. I puzzled about this because that seems a waste of resources.
These stories were interesting, though suffered poor translation, and somewhere in the middle of the storyline, they just vanished completely for some reason. I don’t know if it was a consequence of the new story revamp, but I never got to see the ending – what happened to Edan and company – that kind of thing.
The game suddenly flitted from this main story with cutscenes and characters to a series of quests that lead you from one point to another across the map to fight battles and kill things. Still, I’m glad that I went through the old scenarios because it seems that some of the titles you earn may be locked behind boss fights that you got there.
Also, it took me to places I’d not explored before during the new quest lines, so that opened up a lot of new knowledge and NPCs. Though the ending of the old storyline is a lot more lackluster than the new. Basically, after you go through quest after quest to kill stuff, the Black Spirit just tells you that you’re all done here.
The new storyline, in contrast, has you face down Kzarka and gives you a nifty cutscene – but no one really explains much about who this guy is until after the fact. The old version, they actually mention him several times and explain way ahead of time that this is a dark god… but then, you never see him or face him at all. Again, I don’t know if this was how the old story worked back in the day or if it’s just fragmented now (or if I missed something).
Anyhow, it’s done on Ben, and I’m now merged into the Mediah quests just like all the other characters I have. Following in the footsteps of those who came before, I poked around at the bandits near Altinova for a while last night and pushed Ben up to level 55.
So, getting him to 56 should be a bit more grind on bandits tonight. And then off to get his Oasis gear.
With all of my characters almost at the same point in the game, I’ve been working on the Chenga Tome quest line on the side. I’ve heard that this substantially increases quest rewards and is a viable way to level from 56 to 61. So obtaining that is a goal, as is starting to work on my lifeskills soon.
I don’t think grinding for silver or doing boss fights is going to be a viable playstyle for me, so I’m looking at ways that lifeskills can earn me the silver I need to look at upgrades eventually.