Continuing the ride the wave, Daybreak opened up two more progression servers last week, but this time the servers are for EverQuest 2. I chose to play on the PvE version rather than subject myself to PvP, and rolled up a Gnome Necromancer.
A little bit of my EQ2 Background…
I played briefly when the game launched. Graev was much more into it, but even he only lasted a few months. About 6-8 months after launch I went back and played EQ2 for roughly a year. Fast forward a couple years later and I dabbled in Echoes of Faywder but didn’t stick. I came back for Kunark and ended up playing for about 6 months. Ultimately I ended up with a 50 Monk, 55 Shadowknight, and 50 Brigand. Back then, that wasn’t bad.
Logging back in for the first time two days ago, you’d think I never played the game. Everything was either different or my memory is getting horrible. Eventually I figured out the UI, found the dozens of settings windows to tweak the game to be just how I want it, and set out once again into Norrath (albeit a fragmented version).
You’ve probably seen me in-game (guess my name) asking dozens of questions. Last night I was trying to figure out crafting which has radically changed from back in the day, and is still quite different from other crafting systems despite being (I think?) dumbed down from what it was in 2005 when I last crafted. I think the system now just required me to match the symbols when they pop up? Is that right?
Feels good to return to a game that I literally played more than any other MMO released in the past 10 years and feel like a newb again.
Quests and More Quests
Wow… (sorta no pun intended) this is so different from EverQuest. EQ2 is very much a quest-driven game now. I think I remember it being that way around the time of Kunark too. I picked up 5-6 quests and facerolled my way through the Isle of Refuge (I remember this place from when I first played) then quickly progressed my way through half of Darklight Woods.
I guess I accidentally picked the OP/FOTM class. I’m having no trouble blowing through orange named mobs and having zero downtime whatsoever. Send in my pet, dot dot dot, dead. Pet does some crazy AE root/aggro and I never worry about a thing.
After two evening of play (roughly 4 hours maybe?) I’m almost level 14 or 15 (lost track) and working on becoming a Sage so that I can craft spells. I’m currently lost in the city trying to find where to get the crafting tutorial. I guess the tutorial quests can take me to level 7 crafter? Here I’ve been just grinding.
Finding Joy in the Little Things
EQ2, despite its quest grind and other issues, has many redeeming qualities. I find myself happily logging in these past two nights wanting to get further and see more of the game again.
Gathering – I love gathering. I don’t know what it is about harvesting these nodes, but I can’t get enough. I think it’s the chance of finding a rare that keeps me going. Will this one have a rare? No? Ooo but this one might! I gather everything I see.
Combat – It’s way faster than EQ, but still slower than most modern games. I like how combat ‘feels’ and how encounters work. I sorta like the ‘encounter only’ aoe spells. I like lots of the spells, actually — at least for the necro.
Maps – EQ2 has great maps. If a game is going to have maps, they should be like EQ2’s. I like to stare at them and look for things. I think I spent 20 minutes scouring the city last night.
Ability Levels – EQ2 still has the Apprentice, Adept, Expert, etc., spell/skill levels. I like knowing that I can gain abilities but still upgrade them.
Skill Trees – I forgot about these completely. At certain levels you can choose what abilities you get. If I remember correctly, that means at like level 14 I can pick 1 or 4 abilities? Something like that. I like choices.
EQ2 feels really social right now; Lots going on in chat, people are mostly helpful. I’m overwhelmed by the complexities that come with a game being this old. Things like housing, QoL items I should buy, how to upgrade gear, etc., are all beyond me right now. I’m just progressing and wandering around looking for stuff. I don’t even remember how dungeons work, or where they are at, or if I should even do them.
Feel free to share any tips for a veteran-turned-newbie returning to EQ2. I’m having fun and will spend a lot more time in EQ2 now, especially since I’m all-access and currently well-fed with Kronos.