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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

One Week Post Evolution of Combat: How is it Working?

It's been a week since the release of Evolution of Combat.  Last time I wrote was just after getting 99 Agility.  (Boring!)  Since then, my major focus has been on Mining, with a minor on Dungeoneering.  Want to get Mining up to 99, it's currently on 97.  But Dungeoneering has had some of my attention, because of the daily challenges.

With 5 skills left to max, the Daily Challenge is very easy to manipulate.  I just ignore the 3 challenges I'm not currently interested in, and every day get either a Mining or Dungeoneering challenge.  Both are good.  With Dungeoneering, the challenge reward is a bit over 100k exp.  Do one floor, get 100k.  What a deal!  Actually made 99 Dungeoneering from that.  (And most of the other levels from effigies, bonus exp, and randoms.)  That's put me in the odd spot of being 99 DG and still not having any chaotic equipment.

When doing DG, I either solo, or Monique and I do the dungeons together.  So the new update that improves solo exp was wonderful for us.  To be honest, EOC Dungeoneering was pretty fun, too.  Rather than creep around trying to survive, I just blasted through the levels like a force of destruction.  Okay, it was overpowered at first.  But fun.

I've read on the forums that Jagex has been trying to re-adjust the balance in Daemonheim, only now they've gone too for the other way.  But my last few days challenges were mining, so haven't been back since the re-balance.  I hope they get it back to being fun again.  Have you tried Blink recently?  He nearly killed me, but it was my first time with him.  Wasn't sure if he's usually that tough, or if it was one of the EOC adjustments.

Maybe my next challenge will be to complete a level in Dungeoneering.  It'll give me an excuse to get away from Mining for a while.

As far as Mining goes, the EOC has certainly had an impact there!  Before Evolution of Combat, I was banking all my gold from the Living Rock Cavern.  Decent rate of exp, and a bit of profit.  After EOC, the ability bar is just too tempting.  Now I drop mine all the gold.  With ore in the ability bar, you can keep clicking on it, or hit the key bound to that slot, without stopping mining.  Don't know actual numbers, but I'm convinced it's doubled or better my exp rate.

The cost of doubling exp speed is twofold.  First, mining now takes my full attention.  No more AFK'ing while the inventory fills up.  Constantly clicking to 'drop' the ores, plus it's really sped up how fast the decorated mining urns fill up.  Secondly, now it costs money to train, instead of making a small profit.  The cost of urns seems kind of high, and if you don't raise your bid up a lot, you won't get any urns from the Grand Exchange.

Could make my own, but I'm really into doing the mining right now.  Don't want to break stride for anything except Dungeoneering.  On the other hand, if the profit margin for urns continues high, after maxing mining, I might spend some time making urns for sale.  Crafting will probably be my next goal, so it would be a good match, even if the exp rate for urns is slow.  Maybe it could fund later, more expensive, training.

In the midst of all that, I haven't given the EOC a dedicated test.  Only what I see while in the dungeons, or fighting living rock protectors and throwers.  At first, it seemed too easy.  Fun, but they were dead before my adrenaline got high enough to even use a Threshold ability.  Now, I can kill a rock monster with a pickaxe and Excalibur, and get enough adrenaline to use an Ultimate (just barely) before it's dead.  Most of the time, I ignore the Ultimate, and save the Adrenaline for healing with after the fight.

Not having faced a decent boss on EOC, can't really speak to more difficult fights.  As far as standard MVP fights, the changes have been a lot of fun.  Cool abilities, many choices, excellent animations.  The loss of some weapon specials is annoying.  Excalibur, especially.

The Runic Staff (from doing Runesphere) took some figuring out.  The ability to load and use it for a specific spell is still there, but not obvious.  Monique figured it out.  We use it for an easy Varrock teleport.  She dragged the Varrock teleport spell into the ability bar, then wielded the staff.  Even though the ability icon stays dimmed, you can click on it and it will teleport.  (Or whatever spell you're using with it, I imagine.)

My biggest gripe?  We need instructions.  Real, in-depth guides.  Suggested methods of fighting and training.  Comparisons between weapons.  Sure, Wiki and other sites will eventually have all of this.  But Runescape should have prepared the community better.  The Combat Academy is a good idea, but it would be better to have real guides on their own pages within the Runescape site.

That's not really a big problem.  Like I said, we'll soon have all of that from external sources.  In the meantime, EOC has a mix of good and bad, but overall it's been a lot of fun.  I'm enjoying it... mostly!

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