Let’s talk about Archeage, the game that allows you to be a pirate, a farmer, a player killer or even a cab driver.
Sure, the game has plenty of “kill x rats” type quests, but I’ve found that the true fun of the game revolves around situations where you aren’t killing things. Katy and Shawn were drawn to the game originally because of the housing and farming, which I do think is pretty cool. I haven’t done too much farming myself, but I definitely see the appeal (I love Harvest Moon, c’mon). But what I wanted to do immediately upon release was make a boat. So I raced through as much content as I possibly could in order to rack up enough gilda stars for a clipper. In my opinion, having a clipper early on gives you a lot of distinct advantages over people who only have a row boat. I’ll get to those later.
So I set off on this epic journey to make my boat. What I really wanted to do was joy ride around with all my pals and do trade runs. I want to be useful to others since I seem to really be lagging behind in levels. I believe that having a boat will ensure I’m still cool. Kind of like that loser guy in school that everyone thinks is icky, but everyone hangs out with him anyway because his parents have a hot tub. Sort of like that.
To build the boat you need enough material to build a dry dock unless there’s one nearby. Apparently you can use other player’s dry docks but I didn’t see any, so I just grabbed the ten lumber and ten iron ingots myself. Oh, and the ten gold fee up front that you need just to put it up. And then it’s also advisable to put that dry dock somewhere very safe and very close to the crafting stations otherwise your life is going to be really hard. It also helps to have the donkey from one of the starter quests.
The guide I was using the other night seemed really straight forward and fool-proof, however a lot of the time I am very poor when it comes to attention to details. So I kinda screwed up. I bought ten lumber, a hundred iron ingots and a hundred fabric. I thought I purchased one hundred lumber (which is what you need just to make the trade pack). NOPE. I realized my error AFTER I put down the dry dock. There were tears. I cried maybe just a little because I assumed that once I used up my blue print for the dry dock it was used up and I’d never see it again. And you only get three days to make the dry dock. Oh, man. I was devastated thinking that I used up all fifty gilda and not having anything show for it. And all that iron and fabric! That stuff isn’t cheap. Not at all! If you try to get the materials the old fashioned way, which is harvesting it, it’s going to take you a loooong time.
I set off to my farm with Katy to put down some trees. Our conversation went a little something like this:
Me: I don’t have any room for any more trees and I need lumber. I’m going to kill my geese to make room.
Katy: Noo, don’t kill them.
Me: LOOK AWAY, KATY. LOOK AWAY.
Katy: If you kill them when they’re thriving they’ll give more meat.
Me: I DON’T HAVE TIME FOR THAT I NEED TREES NOW!
So then I went on a goose mass killing. A shame, because they were kind of adorable, but they were in my way. TREES.
My boyfriend was in the other room attempting to harvest the lumber I needed via his own methods: the auction house. He was selling stone like a mad man and making tons of money from it. I was despairing thinking I’d never get enough lumber so I set off to the silent forest to camp trees that were maturing. Apparently other people had the same idea because I was waiting by a tree for TEN MINUTES when some dude swooped in on his glider and snatched the tree from me at the last second. I was SO MAD, guys. SO MAD!
So I ran over to another tree. Someone else ran over to it, too. Luckily I’ve been using a mouse since around 1994-ish and I’m old so my finger twitching experience is probably much better than some of the kiddos who were griefing me. I’m gonna assume they were 15. I don’t want to imagine that the assholes who were making me fling expletives at my monitor the other night were like, forty or something. Nope. So these kids were moving in on my trees, I was screaming at my screen and my boyfriend was probably rushing to get as much lumber as possible just so I’d shut the hell up. It’s what I’d do if I were him.
After dealing with this situation for about three hours (I was also watching a movie, okay), my boyfriend announced he had enough lumber. Hooray! My hero! So we reconvened at the spot of my dry dock (Austera) and he escorted me while I made the trade packs. That part was really uneventful, thankfully, and I was taking an immense amount of pleasure out of hammering my boat together with my own virtual hands. It was great watching my character sit there and build the boat with the lumber and I felt so much more accomplished once it was done. There was virtual applause and then some fireworks and the boat glided into the water with fan faire. Whee!
Fast forward to this afternoon, on the coast of Austera where I see a man in a row boat steadily drift towards me.
“Hello. I’m going to Ynstere. It’s high level for you though.”
“But I can drop you off if you need.”
“No thank you, I’ve got my clipper on me but thanks!”
So then he rowed off soundlessly. I decided it would be funny to row past him on my big ol’ clipper since he was level 40 and in a dingy and I’m level 26. Yes, it was gloating, but I never gloat in the real world so let me have this. I went past him and I waved, and he waved back and then some random dude jumped onto my ship. I thought nothing of it really until he grabbed my harpoon and launched it into the ocean floor. This game has a crazy physics engine. The harpoon hit the bottom and dragged us under into the sea.
I was mildly panicking because I had no idea what would happen to the ship and I was running out of breath but I didn’t want to abandon ship because A CAPTAIN NEVER ABANDONS THEIR VESSEL.
The guy in the row boat saw what was happening and was yelling, “Help them! Help them! They’re going to die!”
My boyfriend saw what was going on and proceeded to CRACK. UP. I was also laughing because then the guy cut the harpoon line and the ship went up like a sling shot out of the water….up….up…up into the clouds. My ship was spinning in circles with me clutching the wheel. We landed back in the water with a thud, but luckily nothing broke. Archeage’s boats are super durable!
After that ordeal, the man in the rowboat decided to climb on board. I asked him if he wanted a ride, so I took him all the way up to his destination. We chit chatted and it was fairly uneventful, except some people were tailing us for a bit trying to get his trade pack. I was a little worried they’d catch up and kill my passenger, but we made it through the channels just fine. We arrived in Ynstere and he gave me some money for the trip and that’s when I realized that I could actually make a living just sailing the open seas carrying people without their own ships. I think having a ship early on is going to add a lot more life to the game for me. It already has. I’ve been able to reach spots that I couldn’t before and I’ve met some interesting people because of it. Who knows where the ship will take me next. Maybe to Nuia?