One of my first blog postings here at my.opera was about tradeskilling. More specifically it was about harvesting enough raw materials so that you could tradeskill. At the time of the original post, I fully intended to write the follow up how to shortly thereafter. Well it has finally come time to do so, here it is.
Many people I meet in Everquest 2 don't like to tradeskill, and for many good reasons. For many, the reason is that they can't consistantly make Pristine quality products. Tradeskilling is a bit different than adventuring so I will guide you through the basics today. ...
First, let's define some terms that you may not already know. I will be using these terms to explain some things.
- Tier - A tier is a group of 10 levels( 1-9 = tier 1, 10-19 = tier 2, 20-29 = tier 3, etc ) and the products you create in one tier can only be used to their maximum potential by people whose adventuring levels are at or above that same tier. Tiers are often written shorthand so that T5 is the same as Tier 5 or levels 40-49.
- Durability & Progress - When in the process of creating something you have 2 bars shown. The top bar, which is usually green, is your durability bar. The bottom bar, which is blue and starts out empty, is your progress bar. The durability bar represents what quality level you are going to create. The progress bar, sometimes called state bar, just shows you how close you are to being done, or what quality level you will create if you quit now.
- Quality Levels - There are 4 quality levels you can create. The 4 types most often used, and thus what I'll use, are crude, shaped, regular ( no-name ), pristine. For the most part, we only want to concern ourselves with pristine but it is good to know the lingo.
- tick - The intervals at which the tradeskilling station ( stove & keg, woodworkers table, etc. ) gives you updates on your progress and durability. Usually around 6 seconds.
Tradeskilling in EQ 2 was designed to be more like an encounter than tradeskilling in EQ Live, where you just put in your components and hoped it combined properly. Like an adventuring encounter, you have actions you can take to change the way the encounter is going. In adventuring you might stun your opponent or heal your group member. In tradeskilling you might increase your speed at the expense of success, or improve durability at the expense of speed. Unlike adventuring you don't get new actions every level. Instead, you get them every tier.
The actions you get at each tier alternate their focus. At the odd tiers ( T1, T3, etc ) the focus is on speeding up the progress bar. Conversely, even tiers ( T2, T4, etc ) focus on improving durability. For this reason, I recommend having the actions from the highest odd tier and highest even tier available for use in your hotbar. I usually put them on my fourth hotbar window and when I tradeskill I just press Shift+4. When I'm done I press Shift+1 and go back to adventuring.
Like adventuring, maxing out your skills is vital to success. With the tradeskill system as it stands now, there is only one skill to max out for your tradeskill class. However, if you've tradeskilled and only used an action to counter some event you may have noticed that your skill doesn't go up very fast. Your skill only has a chance to go up when you create an item or take an action. So in order to get your skill up you need to use your tradeskilling actions more.
There are many guides I've read online that tell you to use your tradeskilling actions more to improve your odds, but they don't tell you how. When I first started trying it I would always run out of power. There is a simple tactic to be able to press buttons every tick and not run out of power. This tactic doesn't involve a mana stone or using your pet's health for mana, it's actually quite simple. Each tier you only get 3 new actions to take at your tradeskill station. One uses a lot of power and the other two use such little power that they regenerate by the next tick. So every tick just use the 2 that don't use any power. Just make sure to counter any events that come up, though it usually isn't too bad if you don't. By doing that you give yourself 2 chances every tick to skill up. You'll be maxed out in no time. Once your skills are maxed out they stay maxed out, as long as your continue to do the same routine.
To get a pristine, just about every time, use this method with your even tier actions. Since they focus on durability over speed, it is slow going but you are almoste assured a pristine. If you want to move faster and your durability is high enough, go ahead and use the odd tier actions. Once you feel comfortable with tradeskilling you can do lots of writs to earn status for your guild without having to get a group together. My next article, I promise it will be this week, will be about how to achieve success with the rush order writs.
My characters( all on Nektulos Server ):
Diacre: 40 Armorer, 38 Shadow Knight
Leroy: 47 Tailor, 44 Templar
Courier Theloniuss: 50 Woodworker, 32 Bruiser
Envoy Lutte: 50 Provisioner, 28 Warden
Froche: 32 Carpenter, 23 Swashbuckler
Diacona: 14 Conjuror, 14 Scholar
If you'd like to join a high level ( currently 37 ), casual ( real life comes first ) guild send me a tell and I'll invite you to the Black Moon Syndicate.
If you haven't played Everquest 2 and would like to try the game, Sony currently has a trial called Play the Fae. If you own a mac, check out this page that talks about using boot camp to play EQ2.