It’s been a while since I’ve said much about ArcheAge here. Some of that is my usual habit of wandering away after a little bit, even while Smudge continues on.

And that did happen here, but….

Both Smudge and I have been interested by the largish crafting system, which is fairly well done. The property owning, and the farms as a source for most of the materials you need is appreciated.

But then they gate it in annoying ways. Higher level/useful items generally need something that has to be gotten through running a trade pack from one continent to the other. That is designed to put you at risk in PvP—and one of the major guilds on the server recently went largely pirate (separate from either of the two factions in the game).

Smudge doesn’t care for PvP at the best of times. I technically like it… in more contemplative settings (board games…), but in a high-action setting where you’re being forced into it because something else completely is at stake (the future of your crafting), yeah. High-stress fox is unhappy fox.

My eventual judgement was that the crafting system existed to give the PvPers a fantasy adventure sandbox to run around in. i.e., instead of coming up with a bunch of random NPC/monsters to encounter and fight, they made sure there were random PCs to encounter and fight.

There’s been some bugs that have existed since Alpha without being acknowledged (I ran into one: one of the alchemy potions is supposed to be craftable on the basic alchemy workstations, and is listed that way in-game; but it’s missing from the list when you actually use the table), so we’ve been determined not spend money on the game. But while it is technically Free to Play, to own land, you have to be a Patron. You can do that by buying APEX with in-game currency, but the price has been going up by leaps and bounds, from ~60 gold around game launch (just about six months ago) to ~750 gold last week. Of course, all APEX have to be bought with real money by someone, and then you can sell it for in-game money, but this shows that the idea of ‘whales’ buying APEX so they can sell them to buy in-game stuff isn’t working. I’ve been wondering if they just haven’t kept the attention of big spenders or what.

Smudge has been involved in a guild for a while, which kind of expanded out of control, and drama kept happening with other guilds as a result, but the main people were good.

But, in general, ArcheAge has one of the poorer MMO communities we’ve seen, and it’s just been getting worse. The good people we know gave up on questing around level 30 (when the quests force you into PvP-land), and getting a group together for less than max-difficulty dungeons is difficult (not that there’s many dungeons to begin with). In fact, there’s a fair amount of dismissal of doing quests in general, and while there was a decent number of RP-interested people on the server to begin with, they were basically the first to go.

And the last straw for Smudge was seeing a group of guys complaining in general chat about not being able to have sex with their wives while they were asleep. >.<

Anyway, here’s a picture from happier times:

ArcheAge Screen Shot

This is a New Year’s group shot of the main members of the Night Owls guild (been meaning to post this for ages). My alt, Frasissa is the female Firran in the center, and Smudge’s alt/guildie LingLi is to her right. Several of the guild’s ships are in the background, and the symbol on most of the sails is the guild logo Smudge did.

We’re not sure what’s up next for us. Smudge is in the final stages of crunch time of getting To Kill A Dragon #4 out.