Sunday, January 26, 2020

Everquesting Through Shattered Lands

I have quite literally killed thousands of orcs this week. My Everquest 2 playthrough continues unabated, my Dark Elf Necromancer has reached the lofty heights of level 50. I think I'll be locking myself at this level for a while because it represents the original level cap in the base game. I'm interested in clearing a few more zones with her before moving on to the next expansion, Desert of Flames.

I tend to play my MMOs like de facto progression servers. I specifically play through the content in the order it was released as much as I can. I don't actually play on progression servers though for two reasons. Firstly, progression servers tend to have more population that I want to deal with in the beginning zones. I like MMOs more for their style of play than for the 'community'. Other players usually just means competition for quest mobs. Secondly, I prefer the quality of life changes we have in the updated games. I would not have made it to level 50 without Everquest 2's fast travel feature. As bad as World of Warcraft Classic may have been about long travel times, Everquest 2 was worst. Every zone intentionally placed quest givers and objectives in obnoxious spots. With fast travel and flying mounts it's not a problem.

My original goal was to do as many of the zones as possible on one character but I've reevaluated that. I'm well ahead of where I "need" to be in AA levels so mentoring down and tackling old content with one character feels a bit like spinning my wheels.  Combine that with the handful of "good alignment only" quests and it makes sense to split this work into multiple characters.

I've divided the "responsibilities" as such:
  • Aurella - Dark Elf Necromancer [Evil]
    • Isle of Refuge [Evil] (1-5)
    • Freeport Suburbs/Sewers (6-20)
    • Commonlands (11-20)
      • Wailing Caves (12-20 HEROIC)
      • Fallen Gate (20-25 HEROIC)
      • Gobblerock's Hideout (25-30 HEROIC)
    • Nektulos Forest (21-30)
      • The Cauldron Hollow (30-35 HEROIC)
      • Nektropos Castle (30-35 HEROIC)
    • Zek (31-40)
      • Deathfist Citadel (40-45 HEROIC)
  • Flinte - Dwarf Templar [Good]
    • Isle of Refuge [Good] (1-5)
    • Qeynos Suburbs/Sewers (6-20)
    • Antonica (11-20)
      • Blackburrow (15-20 HEROIC)
      • Stormhold (20-25 HEROIC) 
      • Condemned Catacomb (25-30 HEROIC)
    • Thundering Steppes (21-30)
      •  The Ruins of Varsoon (25-35 HEROIC)
    • Enchanted Lands (31-40)
      • Runnyeye (30-40 HEROIC)
    • Rivervale (35-45) 
      • The Tower of Drafling (35-45 HEROIC)
This still leaves Feerot, Everfrost, and Lavastorm (and their respective Heroic zones) behind. I'm not certain how I want to handle them quite yet. I may lump them in with a character that also does one of the revamped starter zones and both "Adventure Packs" (Bloodline Chronicles and Splitpaw Saga). Yet another character will handle all the zones introduced in Echoes of Faydwer later down the line.

This feels perhaps unsustainably ambitious. But that's okay. The worst that happens is that I get bored and simply move on to the next expansion pack. That's a problem I can live with. It's honestly impressive just how much there is to do even when limiting myself to the original base game that came out 15 years ago.

I'll leave a write up for my thoughts on each of the zones I've played through for a future blog post. I still need to clear out The Cauldron Hollow and Nektropos Castle on Aurella. With Mrs. Everwake out of town for meetings all week, I suspect that post will be sooner rather than later.

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