In my very first blog post I outlined my main reason for starting to write: to preserve and share great memorable experiences that might be forgotten otherwise.
One of those events came to pass in ArcheAge. Lakisa, our friend Tristron and I had a day full of adventure and excitement, and this was the catalyst that kindled my desire to write stuff down for the first time.
I had no idea how to start though, and unfortunately didn’t put in the effort to find out at the time. So now I’m going to try and reconstruct that day, for stories like these really shouldn’t pass into oblivion.
In order to get your medium sized farm in ArcheAge you need to do a couple of trade runs. Trade goods are crafted at certain workbenches and can be sold to trade NPCs for gold or other rewards. The farther away you sell, the more it’s worth. The kicker is that trade packs are very heavy and slow you down considerably. You wear them like a backpack one at a time, and if you put it down on the ground anyone can pick it up and steal it.
If you don’t own a farm cart yet you can only speed up the process by using public transportation (carriages or airships), or by riding a donkey.
The last quest requires you to deliver a trade pack to the other continent, so you need to cross the ocean by boat. This is where it gets dangerous because as soon as you leave coastal waters you’re in lawless territory and anyone can attack you. We were still pretty low level at the time, so even without tradepacks on our backs we’d be easy prey for pirates.
When we finally reached the shore I spawned my clipper and we set sail.
We were very nervous and kept our eyes peeled because the sight of any sail on the horizon was more than likely to mean trouble.
We tried to avoid the direct trade routes and zigzagged our way towards the destination. Nevertheless we spotted another ship once and collectively held our breath, hoping that whoever it was didn’t see us or had other things in mind. After a couple of tense seconds it was out of sight again. Phew.
Luckily the quest doesn’t actually require to hand over the trade pack to an NPC, you just have to reach a specific area with the cargo on your back. You have to get pretty close to the shore though, and since it’s the enemy continent its residents can attack you anywhere. I held my course towards the dock with trembling hands, ready to turn around as soon as the quest updated.
Then it happened. “Reef the sail!” I shouted on Teamspeak and turned the rudder (i.e. pressed the D key) as hard as I could. After having turned about 120° I gave the command to hoist the sail again, and we quickly gained pace and sped towards the open sea. Mission accomplished.
We made our way to our own continent’s nearest shore unharmed and delivered our trade packs to an NPC for a bit of profit.
Since this had been so thrilling and fun we weren’t ready to call it quits just yet. Instead we decided to try getting our hands on snowlion mount pups, which meant we’d have to do another trip across the ocean and even venture into the heart of the hostile country.
This time we crossed the sea without incident and soon Haranya’s coast came into view.
But where to disembark? Enemy players weren’t our only concern, for NPC guards, too, would attack us on sight. The coastline consist of steep cliffs for the most part though, so we had no choice but to head for the village pictured above.
We found a spot without any guards close by, jumped off the clipper and tried to sneek our way into the hinterlands. We had to pass by a guard much too close for comfort once, but got through unharmed.
Once out of the village guards were no longer a problem, but we were still wary of other players and had quite a distance yet to cover. We decided to try going over the mountains instead of using the roads and paths.
We indeed managed to get pretty high up with the help of our gliders and some bold jumping maneuvers.
This proved to be a veritable shortcut. Not only did we not see another player the whole time, we were in fact very close to our destination once we started to descend the mountain range on the other side.
Now it was time to tense up once more though, because if the location of our own continent’s mount NPCs was anything to go by chances of encountering other players would rise dramatically the closer we got.
Shortly before we hit ground level we could actually see the NPC as well a a couple of players from a distance. Luckily the players were rather low level, so we figured we’d probably be able to talk to the NPC and buy the pups before anything serious happened to us.
We mounted our gliders and sailed right towards the NPC. We managed to land right next to him, quickly bought the pups we wanted and legged it as if the devil was on our heels.
We got what we wanted and didn’t even die in the process. Victory again! We decided it was time to port home, nurse the pups to grow them into mature mounts and call it a day.
It was a funny, exciting and very rewarding adventure, and this is why I really love to play sandbox-like games.