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Home > Archeage, General > The Pros and Cons of Archeage: Housing and PvP

The Pros and Cons of Archeage: Housing and PvP

November 12, 2014

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It is my goal to talk honestly about the flaws and strengths of Archeage, review it a bit, and talk about my experiences in it.  I plan to release 5 articles this week on Crafting and Travel (yesterday’s), Housing and PvP (today’s), Leveling and Classes, The Endgame Gear Grind, and the Trial System and Game Infrastructure.

Note that everything I say is a matter of opinion. The solutions I offer are merely the perspectives of a gamer with a scientific background in programming, but by no means am I a developer who knows what it would take to implement any of it. I simply believe in presenting problems with solutions, rather than just focusing on the negative.

Today we talk about Housing, the problems facing it, and my favorite of all topics, PvP.

Housing

Pros

Owning land is a major benefit to being a Patron, which is Archeage’s subscription.

Houses serve a purpose beyond just cosmetic, and most of that is with regards to crafting. All of the professions that can craft something have the ability to craft a decoration that increases skill in that craft when placed in a house. Houses can contain storage chests, flags with custom emblems on them, and other awesome details.

You can plant around your house, drop trade packs on your housing plot, and some special crafting stations that are needed for higher-level crafting can only be found on a house. Houses also have a hearth location that you can save to your teleport book.

There are special housing-esque plots called Scarecrow Farms. They come in a variety of sizes, and are granted by a quest that makes you take trade packs around and introduces you to crafting life. You can plant on them or raise animals on them.

Although farms with JUST animals look pretty creepy...

Although farms with JUST animals look pretty creepy…

One last thing I do like is the taxes (upkeep) are not gold-based; it instead uses Labor to keep your farm going (which actually works on a theme level). I would be fine with this being removed if Labor went with it, however. There is inflation of taxes if you own more than two properties. For example, it is 5 tax certificates for an 8×8 plot. Two plots are 10 tax certs. Three 8×8 plots will run you 15 certs, plus an inflation of 7.5 certs, for a total of 22 certs, etc.

Cons

There is a major housing shortage. It isn’t instanced, so you are forced to wait for other people’s taxes to come due and not get paid, then all of the eager, homeless people get really close to the plot that is going to be demo’ed, and everyone clicks like mad! Lowest latency wins.

So very, very lame.

Early in the game, due to almost no restrictions, so-called “housing barons” ate up as much property as they could. Now, as they are able to both use them and sell them, they charge very high prices for land because people are willing to pay them, and the rich get richer.

The Auroria patch was initially beacon of hope to all who wanted land, as there was going to be a full continent’s worth opened. Many had hopes that even if they didn’t get land in Auroria, the prices would go down for land everywhere. Many recognized that without solving some basic issues, the land situation would stay exactly the same.

A quick summary of the snafu that happened with Auroria will be summarized in the Infrastructure post in a few days.

Here are some problems and ways they could improve the housing situation:

Problems

  • There is a hard limit on the inflation of taxes, so after the first 10 properties, you are only additionally paying taxes for the plot itself.
  • There is no requirement to actually build the house. All you need is the initial recipe to build the house, then you can claim land without building.
  • New housing zones that were released for Auroria. While it was great to have more land, because of the first two problems, this means the land barons swooped in and took more land while the people who actually made it possible were still fighting to place the castle. It did not reduce prices for land from the greedy jerks.

Solutions

  • Not only should there be no limit on taxes, they should just simply double every time you add a property. Some have recommended exponential scaling, but let’s be reasonable. At four properties, you would have 8 times the original property taxes. With exponential, you would have 20 times the original property taxes. We want players to be able to own more than one place if they want, we just don’t want them to own ALL THE PLACES!
  • Make them build the house within three days, just like the boat, or their building expires and they lose it. This, in conjunction with the first solution, would probably fix all of the issues.
  • Just in case it didn’t, go ahead and add one more housing zone to each world zone. They could even be half the size, but just adding them with the above restrictions would make it so people could finally build that little cottage of theirs. This will not work if the above restrictions are not in place, because there will be the exact same situation that Auroria had.

PvP

Open World PvP is the main source of PvP in this game, and above level 30, all of the zones are contested. There are war and peace periods, as well as a buildup time that escalates on a scale from 1 to 5 between peace and war.

There is a battleground available (more like a 5v5 arena), as well as a level 50 1v1 arena, but the main fun is in OWPvP.

Zones after level 30 will phase from peacetime (where no one except pirates can be attacked), to escalation (where any kills against the opposite faction go towards increasing the escalation number from 1 through 5), then finally to war, where kills are granted honor and deaths lose honor (used for PvP gear).

You can attack three types of players (colors are based on their names):

  • Red: these are either pirates or enemy faction players. Killing enemy faction players during War-time gives honor points.
  • Green: these are players on your own faction. You have to actually activate Bloodlust mode (CTRL+F) to kill them. In doing this, you become…
  • Purple: These are players who initiate fights against their own faction. By initiating the fight, you earn infamy points if anyone reports the bloodstains left by your target. If you attack a purple player, you will not gain infamy points though.

“Kill-on-sight” lists

Due to the nature of OWPvP, many guilds maintain “kill-on-sight” lists.  In my guild’s case (Old Timers Guild), it has pirate-feeder guilds that flag to kill greens, steal packs, uproot crops, etc. These guilds are generally disruptive, so we are given leave to flag purple and kill them.

Naval PvP

Because a good portion of the game depends on trade, ships are a huge benefit! There are many different types, including really fast clippers with cannons or harpoons for catching other ships, cutters (aka galleons) with weaponry to really put the hurt on pirates, merchant ships with room for 20 trade packs, and fishing boats with tanks to put fish in.

Pros

Open World PvP is very active and rewarding, there are many rock-paper-scissors-style class balances, and there are many opportunities to kill and be killed.

Cons

Open World PvP is very active and rewarding, there are many rock-paper-scissors-style class balances, and there are many opportunities to kill and be killed.

By that I mean, if you don’t like the constant stress of being in OWPvP, or having your class not be able to kill another class in a 1v1 fight without a small miracle, or being killed over and over again, then this game is not for you (this game is for me).

I will say that OWPvP with a guild that is active is a lot more fun than going solo. Your class’ weaknesses are not as pronounced, and guild vs. guild fights can be really fun. You will feel the pain if you are solo, however, so I recommend making friends.

 

What do you think of the “housing crisis?” What solutions do you have for it? Do you enjoy PvP in Archeage? Let me know in the comments below!

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