Posted by: mrrx | February 23, 2007

The Cross-Telon Journey Is All The Fun

Barkscratch : Major XP loss.      That’s pretty much all the progression for this session.    But I’m getting ahead of myself.

Start out the night noting that there’s a patch, many fixes including all kinds of stuff I haven’t even touched yet.      And then the chatter comes around letting me know that there’s a new diplomacy quest that every diplomat should do ASAP.

One thing you end up with a lot of if you’re a diplomat is information.      Tons and tons of it.     My main bag is 3/4 full of it, which will leave very little room for adventuring items, diplomacy gear, and all of that stuff.      But the reward for this quest is some large belt-bag-item that will hold your information.     Nice !    This, I must have.

So I stopped with the parleys at Derogar’s.      I had managed to beat almost everybody there, except Derogar ( he pisses me off), a wandering guy near the horses, and Shield Hartok.      I found two noble-presence NPC’s I couldn’t engage because I left my Noble gear in the bank.      And I started off for New Tarangor.

This city is halfway across the world of Telon from where I was.      Travel in Vanguard is no laughing matter either, but I set out for a cross-country road trip, knocking down the occasional mob along the way.

The woods I traveled through were pretty neat.     Big nasty spiders and Kaon (think will o’ wisps) scattered through them, all doable at level 12.      One big foggy wood which was a nice touch.       They lavished a lot of care on the world-building in this game, clearly.

Made it to Veskal’s Exchange with no problem.      This place has a bunch of civic diplomacy, but most of it required a 90 soldier presence.      And here I was, thinking I was doing good having around 25 points there.      There’s a big grind in my future related to presence I suspect.

Now, from Veskal’s Exchange I seemed to have some choices for travel.

  1. The Northern Route.      Apparently the road is well marked, makes it through the mountain range, but it’s a bit out of the way.     It also leads to Themwar’s Shield where I am KOS as a Vulmane.
  2. The Central Route.      There is supposed to be some way through the mountains, looking at the map at least.       I couldn’t find it the last time I tried, and I ended up wandering and somehow getting past the mountains.
  3. The River Route.      The southerly way to go includes following the river.      This should allow you to pass the mountain range.      Cross it another time later, and you can hook up with the road to New Tarangor again.

So I chose the River Route – the most direct route.

I didn’t count on drowning.       As I tried to cross the river, the current caught me.       I became stuck under a bridge downstream; I’m honestly unsure if this was a bug or intentional.      But once I was caught under the bridge, I wasn’t able to move other than parallel to the bridge, and with my head still underwater.      After dying I realized that in Vanguard, you take the bridges when they’re available.      Or you better look at how fast the water is rushing past or whatnot.

I revived outside of Leth Nurae, with the altar having some helpful guards to protect the newbs.     Or kill the KOS Vulmanes who show up.      I managed to avoid them, and start following the river again more carefully.        There’s a nice little island with level 1-3 spiders and such that gives positive faction with Leth Nurae.      Now, if I want to go in there, I know the place to grind if grinding is necessary.

Made it around the mountain range without incident.      Followed the river and found a spot to cross; no bridges were available unfortunately.     Mindful of the current, I selected a fairly empty stretch of river, ran like crazy while fighting the water flow, and made it safely across.

Now I needed to hook up with the road, or otherwise pass the mountain range isolating the peninsula this dock city is on.       As I headed southwest, I noticed a nasty surprise – a few KOS critters in the low 20’s, along with non-KOS versions.     Great.     Now I’m in a high-level zone and I need to get out of here quickly.

I followed a canyon, dodged some 20th level crows (killer crows ?    Excuse me ?) and found myself at a barrier against the undead invasion.     There were various NPC’s of all races who all had something to say about the undead invasion.      OK – I probably don’t want to go that way do I ?     But my effort to extract myself from the canyon resulted in a death.

Reviving put me on the road again towards New Tarangor.       Right at the spot where you go south to pass the mountain range.     

I headed into the city and climbed a long set of stairs.     There’s one problem though – this is a HUGE city.    The guards helpfully offer to tell me where the bank, vendors, and toilets are.     They refuse to help me find the dock.     So I just wander.

I eventually figured it out.     You follow the path inside of the city and eventually come to a large platform.      Step on it to find out it’s actually an elevator that takes you down maybe 10 levels, and you find yourself in the “Foreign Quarter – Wharf Rat Dock” area.

Well, this has to be the place doesn’t it.      Started running out of the cave when I experienced a very annoying crash/shutdown.     When I get back in game, I find myself dead from drowning.      God help you if you’re running near water during a crash because you end up drowning and finding a tombstone in the water is very difficult.      So I revived again and ran back down to the Wharf Rat Dock.

By now, my XP loss is very big – all my gear is badly damaged and I’ve lost 10% or more of my XP.     It’s very hard to tell, the XP bar has no little indicators, and as noted previously I could not get Drox UI to install (which has an amazing innovation – a number value for XP).

The death penalty in this game SUCKS BIG TIME.       I’m amazed it’s so punitive; who would have guessed it would be WORSE THAN EQ’S in some ways ?       Not only do I lose XP, but I also get my gear damaged severely when I summon my corpse, thus leading to monetary and XP loss.     I absolutely hate it.      I hope they soften the death penalty in weeks and months to come; removing the durability hit would go a long way to making it just harsh, versus pound-me-in-the-ass punitive like it is now.      Anyway.

After running for a long time to get out of the cave, you find yourself on a massive dock.     Heading south along the dock brought me to the boat dock/teleporter lady, who zapped me over to Ca’il Brael without delay.

That was nice.      At least I didn’t have to pay boat fare.

And so I got my first exposure to the Wood Elf city of Tawar Galan.     Wandered around lost for awhile looking for the Sky Bridge – this is the home of Raisoor, the NPC I need to start the quest.     It turns out you have to follow the road to Ca’il Brael for awhile first, then you see two trees with a bridge spanning them.     Raisoor is on that bridge.      All told, I spend a long time in Kojan looking for him, and after meeting up with him, I finally have the quest that I spent over an hour of travel time to get.

He asks you to speak to the Harbormaster and tell him that he’s not actually a smuggler.    Fair enough – I can do that.     A little bit of wandering next in Tawar Galan brought me to the Harbormaster.     He is a 50 skill parley requiring……….. noble presence.

Did you catch earlier what I said about diplomacy gear?     Yes, I left my noble presence gear in the bank in Thestra.

After a quick trip to Ca’il Brael, my travel fears were confirmed.      The bank in Kojan is unlinked to the Thestra bank.      None of my diplo gear is available to me.    So while I may have double the potential bank storage now, I also have no way to finish off this parley.     Not only that, but I know I have to grind some noble presence in order to work this quest.     

Believe it or not, even after all this trouble, I forget what the value I need is.     Was it 12, or was it 15 ?    I think I’m going to work towards 15 which should do it.      That would mean grinding perhaps four presence points towards nobility; I believe I have that newbie rod that gives +11 to nobility.     So I’ll be trying out the Derogar’s nobles to get those points.

So a quick gate back to Halgarad, and as I started up the path to the bank I figured that was enough for the night and logged off.     It was a bad night for progression…….. but one heck of a lot of fun !



  1. Haha my travels sound much like yours, through all of the Thestra areas and exploring my way through water currents that like to sweep me off of my feet and down stream towards some pretty nasty things that wander in there.. it’s actually a feature I like a lot about the game, the water current.

    Hate the death penalty though. Even if you walk back to your corpse, you’ll always suffer 1-2% exp loss. Isn’t the fact that your gear takes a hit and you have to wander back to the place you just died significant enough without reimbursing the entire amount?

  2. “It was a bad night for progression…….. but one heck of a lot of fun !”

    Well, you summarized VSoH. The game is complex, the game is difficult. And the game is fun.

    There are bad nights like that. But there are a sense of adventure and achievement. The game isn’t spoon feeding you.

    The world is huge, trips aren’t easy. Dungeons are huge too. Sadly they don’t implemented merchant system to diplomacy yet, the merchant system make the diplomat trip to all cities at Telon. As you are playing mostly the diplomacy sphere that is partially implemented you don’t saw a lot of the world. All spheres are planned to make the player go out to see the world, but diplomacy need that implement the merchant system for make the diplomats trip a few more. You will certainlly need trip a lot if you get the writs and embassies…

    Yes, rivers have current, I learned that as low level high elf trying cross a river… Rivers have currents and that bring some mortal consequences sometimes, ask to anyone that tryed that fast current at Leth Nurae, that fast current that jump you to fall to death…

    An advice, the safest rote to ANY place is follow the roads. The country have some nasty mobs that will eat you at the first chance. And sometimes the roads aren’t so safe…

    I too think you get the wrong way after Veskal’s Exchange. From VE, go east to Leth Nurae (take care with elf guards, they hate you, and some hobgoblins wander the road too). There is a road bellow LN, behind the big statue, that can safe for you follow and get to the other side of LN. From there you follow to Three Rivers, that stay before Themwar’s Shield. Some guards can be KOS to you there, but from 3R there is a road that follow to south. That road goes to New Targonor.

    [someone need write a trip guide or tourism guide soon, where are the explorers when we need them? Trip was a lot easier with my griphon at beta…]

    I believe that the place you saw (“[…] and found myself at a barrier against the undead invasion. There were various NPC’s of all races who all had something to say about the undead invasion.” ) was Southwatch. It is a nice place for crafting. Sadly sometimes the undead warriors follow the players that cross the wall and go to the village kill the crafters there. From lore: the dwarves lived there and beyhond the wall before the undead invasion. All dwarven cities and mines fall to the undead enemie and the dwarven refugiated at the last dwarven bastion, Bordinar’s Creft. But you know, “Vanguard have no lore”, a lot of reviews say that…

    So, you got to Ca’ial Brael isle and you don’t get to see Ca’ial Brael city? We need a tourism guide urgently…

    At least you saw the Floating Isles from the Sky Bridge?

    Take some pictures next time you trip.

    My tourism tip: take care if you trip to Martok Island, dark elf city and Mekalia. At Martok the goblins and orcs will eat you alive, the dark elves are evil and the gnomes are paranoic… the guards there attack everyone.

    And get some good faction with dwarves… I suppose you just need kill some Oath Breakers dwarves or some kobolds. Maybe 200 or 300 ones. There are a lot of low level kobolds at dwarven starter area. Bordinar Creft is a city you need see.

    And kill that spiders… Leth Nurae too is a city you need see.

    Geregor Bedstone
    cleric 13 / armorsmith 21

  3. It’s good to see you’re having fun with a game everyone said was going to be horrible. I wasn’t able to stick with it long enough to get past all the horrible stuff and what not.

    But…… you need to come back to EQ. =(

  4. I love that feeling early in a game when just exploring and travelling to new places is an adventure in itself. So much the better if there is some actual danger involved.

  5. That is one advantage of being a necro ..u can still have your minion and all your spells when u reapeear so can nearly always get back to my corpse as if i get hit more than twice im normally dead anyway lol

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