Way of the Paladin Part 2: Shhhh I’m hunting Antlings (and Efts, and Spriggans, and …)

Right I know I said I’d try and level by doing Guildhests, but it turns out there was a teeny tiny problem with that. Guildhests don’t become available until level 10, so for this levelling between 5 and 10 I’ll have to leave them out.

Or leve them out if you will… Ha ha!

Oh wait, you don’t all play the game so that might not make sense.

Basically at certain quest hubs there are these fine chaps and chapesses (chapettes?) called levemetes. Once you have levelled your first level 50 class you will get to both Love and Hate these guys. You see, the main questline is a really good way of levelling up your first class, but the world becomes devoid of quests after it, as it leads you from one place to the next allowing you to hoover up all the quests in quick succession. This is a good thing as it keeps you engaged and you get to follow the story along to the end. It is also a problem as your Second class doesn’t have this benefit.

That’s not to say it becomes a massive grind… it CAN do if you let it but you don’t have to. Levemetes and the quests they give out certainly help with this.

Leves are effectively repeatable quests for a given region. Usually they take about five to ten minutes to complete and have multiple objectives. They also start off set at certain “levels” equal to character levels, so there are levemetes for level 5 quests and level 10 quests for example. Each Levemete will normally hand you out 4 quests for a given level, and won’t let you have any more until you complete them, you also have an upper level of leves you can take that slowly goes back up over time. I have never actually run out of leves so the increase must be relatively fast (I have done a LOT of leves…)

Once you receive your leves you head to the area of the map painted in green and the initiate the quest. Which is where the first useful thing appears, the difficulty gauge. As I said Levequests have a level associated with them, usually some multiple of five, however you really always want to be doing quests a couple of levels higher than your character. This makes the quests more challenging, but at the same time means you get a bonus both in money and in experience point once you finish. The difficulty gauge allows you to tailor the level appropriately.

Having selected the difficulty the leve will start, the various waypoints and objectives appear both on the map and on the quest log meaning you always know what to do. The types of leve are fairly varied, but they do follow certain MMO-tropes so you have you “kill X of these”, “Gather Y of these”, and also “take idiot Z from point A to point B without them dying”. The mistaken identity leves are new, where you gather an item to check if certain mobs are actually imps in disguise, or the necrologs where you gather pages of a secret book to first summon, then defeat a demon. Even these however boil down to “Kill X”.

Once you complete the objectives you get the chance to teleport back to the levemete and collect your reward, although if you (like me) picked up all four of the available leves you tend to only do this when you have completed the fourth one. Leve quests give nice stacks of money, but more importantly they give delicious Experience Points. At these levels and running at 2 levels higher than my character, I think it worked out at about 6 or so leves would net me the next level.

Excellent, I hear you thinking, so you plough through these five levels and start running the guildhests right?

You could, but you will need a high boredom threshold. You see each levemete can only actually hand out quests from a small stable of potentials. Which means after you have done two rotations of four quests each, you will almost certainly end up running the same quests again.

and again.

and again.

Yes, you are still getting experience points and money out of them, but it does get rather dull. At some levels you can swap to different zones, and do quests from a different levemete, but the quests will still be more of the same.

Which is why I tend, unless I am power levelling, to do a couple of rotations then go complete a hunting log or two. I mentioned the hunting log before, and I really do find it a great help especially to break up the levelling a bit.

The Hunting Log is effectively a class specific “Go kill X of these creatures” quest arranged in tiers. Each tier consists of ten sets of animals you have to hunt down and horribly murder in groups to slake the depraved blood thirst of your respective guildmaster… sorry got a bit carried away there. Basically you go looking for named mobs (not rare mobs though thank goodness) and kill them. Each group gives you a nice big chunk of Experience, and completing a whole tier gives a whopping Exp chunk. This makes it very worthwhile doing, but also you will find that the hunting log leads you to places where there are FATES to participate.

The Fates are public quests, much like they appeared in Warhammer Online. You get to a region which is handily marked on your map so you can find it easier. Once there you get told what you need to do, and then as you might imagine, do it. In the fates however you are somewhat competing with the other people in the fate to get the “Gold” medal for participation as you get a different amounts of experience, gold, and company crests (we’ll get to those later). Handily even if you are above the level of the fate you can just click the “Level sync” button and still take part. Abilities that are above the “synced” level will be locked out, and your stats will be artificially dropped down to the appropriate level as well. Interestingly, if you are a scholar and have Eos out, she doesn’t go away, and keeps healing.

As a low level tank however fates are… fun. Until you get the various tanking abilities, you are effectively actually a cut price dps class. However as I found out when I got my AOE taunt (the slightly dodgily named “Flash”), aggroing all of the mobs leads to your sudden explosion and death very quickly afterwards. I’m sure as I level up these are going to become much easier. Right now you will also see a lot of high level characters running low level fates as they will be looking for “Atmas” which we will deal with WAY down the line. Let’s just say they are grindy horribly difficult to get hold of items that you need to upgrade your weaponry at high level.

Oh and I hate them.

I hate them A LOT.

Having spent a long time wearing the black leather trunks of power I did actually manage to find some Tank gear I had stored in one of my retainers who double as both your bank and your market seller (and supposedly go out on adventures, but I haven’t managed to get them to do that yet). Having slapped some low level leather armour on and actually going to the markets and buying a shield, I now look like this.


Way more tanky isn’t it!

More importantly I now last a lot longer in combat, as it turns out having a shield blocks some incoming damage, who knew right? As such my last couple of levels from 5 to 10 were actually a lot less death filled, although as it turned out using flash while surrounded by Fate mobs was still a bit painful.

Now that I have reached level ten finally, my next report should actually include Guildhests as I work towards level 15, and the first dungeon in which I will actually be required to really tank!

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