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As we all know, the game is about to undergo a major transition from a hybrid P2P/CREDD model to F2P soon. While this has rightly put a lot of attention and focus on the cash shop and what will be in it and what will be sold

What You Should--And Shouldn't--Do To Prepare For The Next Drop

As we all know, the game is about to undergo a major transition from a hybrid P2P/CREDD model to F2P soon. While this has rightly put a lot of attention and focus on the cash shop and what will be in it and what will be sold, there's a bunch of other changes in the coming drop that will profoundly the current players--particularly with respect to gear, stats, and runes. If you're already active on the Closed Beta Test servers, you probably are already planning out how to make that transition as seamless as possible--this thread is to provide some handy tips for the people who aren't on the test servers, to help them know what to expect and how to keep their game experience as pleasant as possible.

 

A disclaimer before I start: everything that I will suggest here is advice based on either the current implementation of the existing beta or developer statements about intended changes to it that have yet to arrive, and so all of those suggestions are based on two assumptions: first, that the current beta is similar if not identical to the drop that will be going live in the next few weeks; and second, that there aren't any aspects of the coming changes that are so obscure that I haven't seen them or even any mention of them in the test forums. I want to caution that nothing currently on the beta servers is guaranteed to be in the version that ultimately goes live, and that I certainly make no guarantee of having been able to see, hear about, or do every single thing in the beta version, so neither of those two assumptions is guaranteed to be correct either. The advice I'm handing out here is based on what I anticipate will be of greatest interest and importance to the most people--if you want a more comprehensive list of changes, best check the patch notes and the beta forums.

 

Also, special thanks to The Unnamed Aurin for help putting this together and also for becoming a badass raider with me to test the imbuements on crafted Master-grade gear! Who was that masked Aurin? We may never know.

 

1. There is no point in optimizing the elements or stats in your runesets in preparation for the upcoming transition. All of the existing rune sets--at least that I have tested so far or heard of anyone else testing--are planned to cease to exist in 3 weeks. All runes from those runesets, whether slotted into gear or not, will be converted into tokens that can be redeemed for some of the new runesets. There are only two types of tokens that seem to exist--purple tokens that correspond to Exceptional/Gladiator runes that count twice for the runeset bonuses, and blue tokens that correspond to the regular runeset runes that only count once. Those tokens don't differentiate based on element or based on which stat they boost, so unless you really care a lot about element and stat for your play in the next few weeks, there's simply not much value to spending ten times as much on a runeset's Fire X Rune of Brutality as you would on the same runeset's Water X Rune of Deflect Critical. If they're both blue-quality runeset runes, they'll both convert to the same blue token.

 

2. There is no point in unlocking new runeslots, or to re-rolling rune slot elements, in preparation for the upcoming transition. Your existing gear is not going to revised, it's going to be completely replaced with new gear--or in the case of crafted gear, with tokens that can be redeemed for new gear. What this means is that all of your current rune slot unlocks are going to be reset and in the current beta implementation, you will have to re-unlock them. The runesets also will have a completely different relationship between stats and elements from the one that currently exists. Your current rune slot element optimization will need retuning following the transition. Both the unlocks and the rune slot element re-rolls will be done through a direct plat-based purchase or through service tokens. The prices depend on the gear's iLevel and are still being adjusted--you can check the latest planned estimates in the Tradeskills subsection of the Closed Beta Testing Forum, in the thread titled "Serious Concern: Gearing Cost".

 

3. There is no point to buying Epochos, Adventus, or Archivos gear unless you plan to raid after the transition. Epochos, Adventus, and Archivos gear are about to all be converted into tokens that are currently redeemable for gear that has very limited power until it is activated by unlocking 2 content-gates in the form of imbuements. The first imbuement requires activating a triggerable object in the entry lobby of Genetic Archives, the second imbuement requires killing Phage Maw. So unless you're either attuned for raiding already or plan to get attuned for raiding shortly after the transition, you won't be able to unlock either imbuement. Unless you plan to kill a raid boss about half way through Genetic Archives, you will only be able to unlock the first of the two. Similar imbuements will lock all new Mastercraft gear behind Dungeon Bosses/World Bosses, Genetic Archives, or Datascape depending on the quality of the Mastercrafted gear; Mastercrafted gear will additionally require materials called Matrices that drop in those instances in order to create it, just like Archivos-level gear currently does with Biophage Clusters.

 

4. There is no point to buying new AMPs for use after the transition. To avoid confusion, I want to be clear: this one is about any AMPs that you have or are planning to buy, and not the endgame items that unlock additional AMP points. After the transition, you won't need to collect and unlock the AMPs themselves at all any more. AMPs that you still have in your possession are currently converted into 50 silver. Don't spend more than that on them unless you really want to have them unlocked now. 

 

5. Eldan Runic Modules and Runic Elemental Fluxes obtained now will not remain available after the transition. Existing Eldan Runic Modules will each be converted into a token that can be used to obtain RNG-based runecrafting materials bags, and existing Elemental Runic Fluxes will each be converted into 10 tokens for the same bags. Of course, this also means that paying more for an Elemental Runic Flux than 10 times the price of an Eldan Runic Module prior to the transition would be a waste of money unless you plan to use them prior to the transition.

 

6. Weaponsmith/Armorer/Tailor/Outfitter gear schematics and Eldan Data Fragments obtained now will not remain available after the transition. Unlearned schematics are currently converted into 250 Crafting Vouchers and Eldan Data Fragments are currently converted into 1250 Crafting Vouchers. Also, the existing tech trees are about to undergo major changes to make the professions much more oriented on Armor/Weapons and not on other stuff, so even unlocking those schematics won't necessarily allow you to craft that gear after the transition. Things are still very ambiguous about what's going on with the Technologist tree and I haven't heard much about the Architect tree at all, so I can't advise on either of those. Anyone who can, please chime in!

 

7. There is no point in valuing different grades of Elemental Signs for use after the transition. Each element is about to have only one quality-level for signs, and all different grade quality levels for the same element are currently converted to that one quality level. For example, each Sign of Fire prior to the transition--whether base level, greater, major, or Eldan--is converted into a single Sign of Fire (only one quality level exists) after the transition. If you plan to use the signs you have before the transition, the quality level matters; if you plan to carry them over, the quality level doesn't matter.

 

8. There is no point in valuing different class and elder game runeset rune fragments for use after the transition. Runecrafting is getting an overhaul and all rune fragments for making class runesets and elder game runesets that I've tested so far, as well as Eldan Rune Fragments, are converted to the same High-Grade Rune Fragments. (Rune fragments not listed there appear to be changed to lower-grade rune fragments). So paying a plat for Fire Starter Rune Fragments and a silver for Head Wind Rune Fragments is a bit silly unless you plan to get a lot of use out of them in the next few weeks.

 

9. Existing crafted Mastercraft Materials will not remain available after the transition. Master Crafting is about to become much more steeply dependent on dropped/salvaged materials, with an additional requirement for schematics and items that can be purchased from the Crafting Vendor for Crafting Vouchers. Most existing Mastercraft materials are currently converted into Complexity Matrices, which will also drop in dungeons and which will be required for some of the lowest-level Mastercraft gear. Notable exceptions include Smart Cloth, Tech Leather, Corium Acceleron, and Vitalium Ingots, which currently convert into purple expert-grade crafting mats for their respective professions.

 

Well, this is really more to lay out what people should be paying attention to as the transition comes up. If there's stuff you don't like and want them to reconsider, please do feel free to bring it up--please don't turn this into a measuring contest of who's getting slapped around more. But I'm also keen to see suggestions for what people should do in the event that Carbine doesn't change its plans substantially, so that there's more that people can do than just suck it up.

 

If they don't change anything about the rune slots issue, the solution is get plat or service tokens. The plat you can get now on live, the service tokens will have to wait until the transition.

If they don't change anything about the crafted gear imbuements, the solution is to either get attuned and raid to be in a position to unlock the imbuements, or get new gear of comparable power that isn't crafted so that the imbuement lock doesn't matter.

 

I will not pretend that these solutions are fair, or that they seem reasonable to me, but those are the options if these aspects of beta are retained in the F2P launch.

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