Blaugust 2015, Day 10
I’ve been known to be a bit of a content locust, devouring new things quickly and completely. Sometimes I move on to new games afterwards, but often I stick around. It requires a bit of self-motivation to find your own fun when there’s no obvious goals sitting in front of you. In WildStar right now I’m not raiding doing much group content. Instead I have the goals of making as much money as I can in a casual way, and upgrading my gear in whatever slow manner I can without raiding. These go hand in hand when I see those drool-worthy ilevel 74 pistols sitting on the AH…
In FFXIV I’m at the stage where I can easily cap my raid-gear currency in a few days, and there’s little I need that can be obtained by pugging. I could just log in very rarely except for raid nights and still be making the exact same amount of progress. Instead, I’ve decided to pick back up where I left off on the relic weapon questline. This is a level 50 quest chain from before the expansion with about 8 different parts that starts you off with an ilevel 80 weapon and eventually progresses it up to 135. In some ways it reminds me of the legendary item quest chains in WoW from Pandaria and Draenor. The difference is that the end result of this chain is not really any better than what you could get from raiding, and it takes a pretty soul-crushing amount of grinding to get there. The quests also send you to a wide variety of different content, across every zone in the game and into most of the level 50 dungeons. It also asks you to dish out quite a bit of cash for vendor items and to either craft or purchase some high-level crafted items.
Before Heavensward released I was about halfway through. I set this goal aside when the expansion launched because there was so much new content to see. When things finally slowed down enough for me to return I was pleased to note that most of the quests had been altered to reduce the grind. I’m now on the next-to-last step, which requires 400,000g worth of vendor items, another 600-800,000g worth of crafted items, and multiple items only purchasable by spending level 50 PvE tokens. Oh yeah, it also requires item drops from 16 of the level 44-50 dungeons, and the drops are not guaranteed.
If you think it sound silly to go through all this effort for an item that was barely worth it when the content was new and is not even slightly useful now, well, yes it is. Sometimes we have to make our own fun in games when there are lulls between content. Sometimes the game puts a silly challenge in front of us. Right now I’m grateful to have something to do that keeps me active and engaged in FFXIV while I wait for new content and for my raid group to return from their end-of-summer travels.
These types of trials are also rites of passage that give a weird traumatic bonding experience. In late Wrath-era WoW I got my “The Insane” achievement, and part of what got me through it was the support of a guildie who had done it too, and the few other folks I’d eventually befriend just because I saw them working on the same tasks with me every day. So three cheers for silly goals that bring silly people together! And a Moonshine Mansion tip-o-the-hat to my FC-buddies Lonomonkey for inspiring me to go down this dark path in FFXIV, and Ash for keeping me company during the silliness! Hopefully I’ll be reporting on my success here soon, before a new level 60 version of this quest chain gets added to the game!