Monday, May 12, 2014

First Steps Into Landmark

Over the weekend I dove a bit more into Sony Online Entertainment's new game, Landmark.  A very interesting game so far, even for someone who has less artistic ability than Rixx Javix does in his little finger.  So far, I've just equipped myself adequately to travel to a tier 2 map, but I'm getting ahead of myself.

First, character creation.  Not what I would call a lot of choice, but the game is in beta.  A real beta, too.  Besides, the game is about building things and making the world look cool, not yourself.

Once the character is done, you are thrown into the world.  A simple tutorial exists by clicking on the "?" button in the lower left-hand corner of the screen, but I didn't figure that out until I was almost ready to move onto the second map.  The location I found myself at was a portal spire.  The spire contained the basics: mailbox, alchemy station, stone forge, tinkerer's workshop, and outfitter's table.  Also, as the name suggests, the portal spire allows characters to move between islands (maps) or even between shards.  A very cool feature.

Because I'm dumb and clicked something closed without looking at the window, I didn't really know what to do.  Fortunately, the devs foresaw this situation occurring and made the game pretty simple.  I started out with a stone pick and stone axe along with a build tool to work my claim.  Work my claim?  That requires making a claim flag.  But why have a claim if I don't have building materials?  So my next step was to gather materials.  And having read a little bit about the game, including following the devs on Twitter, I knew I needed to make myself better tools.

So I spent the time gathering the materials to make not one, but two picks.  And an axe.  Of course, I had to make two rings as well.  One ring let me swing my tools harder and the other, more importantly, let me find rarer items while gathering.  That really helped cut down on the amount of mining I had to do.

Did I say mining?  Yes I did.  The mining in Landmark I think will prove a lot harder to macro or bot than in EVE.  After reading the tool tips for each of the minerals I needed, I realized that I needed to mine the entire vein, as a vein of iron could lead to a vein of tin or to a deposit of a needed gem.  That means digging into the ground.  Sometimes pretty deep into the ground.  Sometimes so deep I couldn't get out.  I never had to call for help, though.  I figured out that if the angle was too steep that I could just cut steps and hop onto those until I was able to get out.

While mining is very clicky, with each strike requiring I aim, woodcutting is another story.  For that, I just need to stand in front of the tree, push button, and receive reward.  I can see woodcutting bots running around when the game goes live, or at least into open beta.

The only thing I really probably need to make before moving on is a grappling hook.  I hear those are a lot of fun.  I've encountered the heroic movement, making long slides down the sides of steep hills.  I can't wait to see something that is difficult.

That's just a brief description of my time in Landmark so far.  I'm going to keep going and get all the nice things.  Then I'm going to see if I can set up a home in the middle of nowhere.  I figure if I can do so in Landmark, then I have a chance of doing to in EverQuest Next.  This is more like a side task than anything, but when I just want to do some mindless harvesting, I know the game to log into.

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