By Narfi Hungary Willem, Entropia Universe Elder
Next week Planet Arkadia will celebrate its 2nd anniversary since launching on the 25th of May 2011.
Since launch Arkadia has seen a steady rise in population, and they continue to roll out updates and add content to keep their players happy on a fairly regular basis.
Arkadia is the fourth Planet Partner to join the Entropia Universe. If you have not heard about Entropia Universe or understand how its business model or Planet Partner franchise system works, you might want to read the article I wrote here for ONRPG.com last month.
Each planet that joins the Universe has its own feel and theme. Planet Arkadia is focused around alien archeology and treasure hunting.
Treasure hunting is a new form of mining that is not available on any of the other planets. You can still mine for ores and enmatter on Arkadia in addition to treasure. Treasure comes in different sorts of artifacts such as broken arrow heads or axes and pottery as well as other artifacts from long forgotten races on the planet. Each of these may be refined and used by crafters for creating different tools, weapons or armor.
When playing it is important to remember that this game is based on an RCE (Real Cash Economy) and you need to study the markets and understand what there is demand for and what is trash filler. If you focus on what there is a demand for, then you will profit, if you mindlessly do stuff with no regard to the markets, then you will do poorly.
Archeology comes into play through a series of instances available by the use of different level keys. The keys can be crafted or purchased from other players who crafted them to sell and will grant a team access to the underground ruins to battle monsters while exploring the mazes. Those skilled and coordinated enough to survive the various challenges can expect treasure chests filled with loot awaiting them at the finish line.
I flew to Arkadia a week ago with the intent to explore and prepare for this article, but got caught up with the fun and different personal goals to accomplish. Honestly it took me a full week to shake off the addiction enough to jot down my thoughts on it all.
I had two goals I wanted to accomplish while there. The first goal was to mine for treasure quite a bit in order to gain some health points (HP) since this process is unique to Arkadia. Each type of mining has skills associated with it that increase your HP, and Arkadia is the only planet with treasure. The second goal was to complete the kill 75 and kill 400 Beladoth missions since the 400 mission reward offers knife fighter skills, and I have the perfect dagger I’ve been waiting to utilize once I acquire them.
I brought a bunch of mining amplifiers with me and started mining at the 8 Coins Land Area which is owned by Deathifier, one of the avatars from the early days of Entropia who has invested in land here to promote a Hunting and Mining paradise profitable enough to make a real life living off via the taxes he charges to visitors.
8 Coins was just the first place I tested for mining but since there was decent markup on all three of the ores, enmatters and treasures I was finding, I didn’t end up looking anywhere else, camping the zone for a few of days. At the end of the third day I was met with a pleasant surprise in the form of my very first Drill Tower which is what you get for an exceptionally large mining claim. Just under 10k PED (Project Entropia Dollars) worth, in addition to the 130% markup once sold, it will bring me over 12,000 PED ($1200 USD). Needless to say I was pretty excited and had trouble sleeping that night. It was my first tower in over 5 years of playing the game on a daily basis and only my second ‘big hit’ worth over $1000 USD (the other was a hunting loot a few years ago).
Since I was obviously ahead, I decided not to press my luck anymore with mining and put the remaining mining amps in auction while I headed out to take on the Beladoth missions. After the tower, the hunting mission turned out fairly routine with a few globals and a couple rare parts that sold for 50-100 PED of markup each. I was able to finish the kill 400 mission this morning before heading to work.
One of the evenings after mining I was at Celeste Quarry (which is where people gather to chat as well as a prominent meeting point for Traders and Space Transporters). I met a new player who ended up becoming my newest Disciple. The game has a system in place for experienced players to mentor new players with a reward system for each upon completion of the program. The graduating Disciple gets a full set of armor in addition to a Hummer/Jeep-looking vehicle, and the Mentor gets a random Mentor Edition item.
I flew him around in my Quad Wing Interceptor and showed him some of the planet, as well as some new teleporters, and then showed him where I had been mining, helping him get set up to do some mining of his own. He has been at it a few days now and seems to be catching on pretty quickly. He is able to target the higher markup resources and is currently learning the best ways to sell depending on individual markups and quantities he has.
If starting to play the game for the first time, I would highly recommend you find a good Mentor to help you learn the ropes. There is a steep learning curve, and having someone advise you will prevent a lot of needless mistakes.
There are a variety of mission NPCs where the new players start on Arkadia, and the typical player will spend their first couple of hours doing these in order to orient themselves with the game. As you get more familiar with everything you will start choosing missions that are more detailed and take some time commitment to accomplish as well as start to get an idea of the direction you want to take for yourself in the game whether it be hunting, mining, trading, crafting, medic, etc.
The official storyline can be found here, and the missions and events you participate in tend to follow the story to one extent or another. Knowing the story is not necessary for game play, but if role playing, or learning the lore of where you are is important to you, then becoming knowledgeable of storyline should help get you pointed in the right direction.
A large part of the storyline centers around the humanoid aliens known as Oratan, who are a primitive race able to utilize technology but unable to create it themselves.
“The Oratan are believed to be the race warned of in The Signal, intercepted by the Celeste Space Probe, which would mean this species inflicted genocide on the Ancient Arkadian People.”
As time has gone on and players have worked to explore and colonize Arkadia, the Oratans have grown bolder and stronger and have been recently seen riding animals and wielding weapons believed to have been pillaged in raids against us.
I mentioned the Aakas instances earlier so I will end the article with a video of what can only be considered a gamer's wet dream. Svena, the avatar in the video, is just finishing a run in the Golden Door instance which is the highest level possible. The parts to create the key are looted from lower level instances and cost 1000s of PED to craft for a run in the Golden Door instance. So she put a lot of work into collecting and buying what was needed to prepare for her runs behind the Golden Door.
Some of the highest level armor in the game can be looted from the Golden Door instances and she has had some really nice offers for the different pieces. ($1500 USD for one of the pieces).
The Lore, the landscape, the community, and the personal drive to succeed are all great reasons to try out Planet Arkadia. As a mid-level player already in the Entropia Universe, I enjoyed my time there and would love to have been able to finish some more missions and meet more of the local people. It has a growing population even after two years, so they are obviously doing something right, and from the new players I talked to, they are having fun as well.