Albion Online Helps Gatherers in PvP

One of my on-going complaints in any sandbox game with open-world PvP is that things tend to always swing in favor of the PvPers. Despite there being multiple ways to play the game, whether it be crafting, gathering, PvE, or PvP, things tend toward balancing in the PvPer’s favor.

Albion Online is/was no different. I’m really not that interested in the PvP. I want to go out into the world, gather lots of resources, farm, make things, and participate in the economy or the building side of the game. That’s how I want to experience the game. For the most part, the game accommodate someone like me doing nothing else but what I want to do. However, since most of the materials from mid to end-game are all in open-pvp areas, I would have to deal with the gankers taking my stuff.

That’s starting to change, or at least become easier for gatherers and a tiny little bit harder for PvPers.

Albion Online Gatherer Gear

Albion Online’s new gathering gear provides gatherers various abilities to flee from gankers, in addition to making them look cool (who wouldn’t want to look the role?), and a bonus to how much they can gather.

Now gatherers can escape during these “PvP” (predator vs. prey) encounters. Here are a few of the options:

Harvester Cap: Magic Pollen

Throw out magic pollen which will confuse all enemies around you, making them walk around randomly. Using this spell will also turn you invisible. This invisibility breaks if you receive damage or if you damage someone else.

Harvester Garb: Spirit of Vengeance

Apply a shield to yourself, which absorbs damage and lasts for several seconds. As long as the shield is active, your gathering speed is increased. If the shield gets prematurely destroyed it explodes, rooting and dealing damage to all enemies around you.

Harvest Workboots: Ethereal Path

Dash towards a target location. During the dash, you are invisible and immune to forced knockback effects. After you arrive at the targeted position, your move speed and maximum load are increased for several seconds.

See more on the official site for Albion Online gathering gear.

At the mere thought of their prey doing anything but rolling over and dying, PvPers are raging hard. PvPers do that. Most are entitled and like to pretend that PvP is the only way to play; Anyone else is just there to support their activity.

Technically, the devs really haven’t even gone far enough. There’s still very little chance a gatherer has to actually escape. This is a step in the right direction, but merely a step. Most of us gatherers are on oxen. We are 200%+ encumbered without our ox, and these abilities aren’t usable mounted. Therefore we can escape a few feet before having major issues. These also do very little to stop the pvpers from stunning us to death.

I appreciate the steps, but hope to see more taken to make gathering even more on EQUAL footing with the PvPers. I believe gatherers should have a 50/50 chance to ‘win’ (and a win means escape) a “PvP” — predator vs. prey — encounter.

  • Lethality says:

    I think measures like this are cool… but I think the option to stay even safer is already there – just travel with protection. This is the part of an MMO everyone seems to forget about, and asks the dev to balance against, without consideration.

    I think you’re right about the 50/50 ratio, though!

    • Keen says:

      What’s tough about the “just travel with protection” idea is that in theory it’s awesome. As a champion of the “force people to play together” idea, I agree. As a realist in the modern market, I see it playing out a little less than ideal.

      Someone like myself wants to be in an all-crafting / gathering guild of friends. Unless we can find ourselves a significant alliance, there’s no such thing as traveling with protection. And even in an alliance, those people may only care to take the time to protect their friends.

      I hope it shakes out in the long-run and we can find ways of hiring protection. I wouldn’t mind saying to someone that they can have 10-20% of my bounty if they’ll make sure the other 80% gets to my vault safely.

  • Caldazar says:

    This sounds like gatherers have a high chance of escape if they gather without encumbered?

    If that is the case I really like this, that means either gather less efficient (more trips to base) but be safe. Or take a risk but be more efficient. Choices like that if balanced well are interesting to make.

    • Keen says:

      I would say it gives gatherers a moderate chance of escape, which is up from a zero chance of escape. However, gathering in Albion Online takes about 10 minutes to get encumbered. I too like the idea of the tradeoff between safety and encumbrance. The more you carry, the more scary it should get (and difficult) to be safe. However, the balance in terms of time is a little bit off.

  • Gringar says:

    Travel with protection sounds like a great idea. In practice the combat roles would almost always rather siege a keep or, ahem, do their own ganking, than guard an oxen.

    The next logical step is to allow characters in full gathering gear access to powerful mercenaries. Better gathering gear could even give you access to higher tier mercenaries. They should be powerful enough to give anyone pause (Think EQ Newbie Guards) but be entirely reactive. And if you switch to combat gear they’ll say “Oh, looks like you don’t need me, see you later!” Then the abilities on the gathering gear have an end goal; Survive just long enough for your merc to do his work. And then also gatherers are their own protection. A few gankers could probably slip past a lone gatherer’s merc long enough to kill him but three gatherers together, guarded by three mercs? That would be a bloody battle.

    I love the idea of a sandbox game but they always devolve into a FFA Deathmatch game. I’ve skipped this one for the same reason but if this game or any other sandbox can elevate gatherers beyond a pinata that you can just walk by at loot at will then I’ll be there 🙂

  • Solarbear says:

    How exciting would it be to stand around ‘protecting’ someone? At some stage MMO’s need to be fun not boring.

    • SynCaine says:

      In EVE, Goons always have at least 50+ people in a fleet 23/7 to protect our miners and PvE players, so if you set it up correctly (which most MMOs of course do not), the idea of PvP-focused players protecting those focusing on PvE can work.

  • Tamlin says:

    The only issue I have with what you said is that you’re complaining about not being able to escape when you’re 200% encumbered.

    • Keen says:

      You missed the point. Gatherers use oxen almost exclusively because of encumbrance. You gather for 5 minutes and you’re encumbered. So we’re on mounts, and abilities require being unmounted. We are ALWAYS encumbered.

      I’m not complaining about about wanting to escape when encumbered. I’m stating a fact that it’s unfortunate that these escape measures are simply not applicable to the situation gatherers all find themselves in.

      • nukethesitefromorbit says:

        The whole idea of a cargo mount is that it carries the load. Right now the system does not really convey that idea because it mimics the concept that anytime you step off your mount and away from it you take all the load with you. A better system would be giving the mount its own load capacity that you deposit into when you mount. So if I gather to 150% and then mount the 50% extra load goes into the mount’s capacity leaving me back at 100%. The ox could have a capacity of 200% (just numbers I am tossing around) and if you exceed that the mount can no longer move.

        Of course this poses all kinds of issues within the current system too.

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