Differences between SoD
Welcome to Shards of Dalaya!
For those of you coming to SoD from Live, you're probably carrying expectations based on the way things used to work on Live in whatever era you left. A better way of looking at SoD is that it truly is its own game and just happens to use graphics and zones from EQ. Faction, Zones, Quests, Mobs NPC are different. In broad strokes, here's what you should expect:
- A very active GM and developer presence (hats off to the dedicated, hard-working, volunteer staff!)... this means rules are enforced (with both jailings and bannings), and it also means there are a lot of one-time and recurring events. More than most of us ever likely saw on Live.
- A unique lore and content... that means unique NPCs and itemization. There's no Trakanon, or Centi Longswords on SoD. On the other hand, character and NPC models as well as zone layouts (but not necessarily zone connections!) are all based on Live models/layouts.
- Progression, casual and raid... SoD has content that allows players to level from 1 to 65 plus AAs and tomes. There's rich, multi-tiered raid content/encounters with a heavy emphasis on tier-to-tier progression.
- Quests... no epics, but main quest line, faction quests, and many other lines. Most yield good rewards and plenty of experience to augment your hunting.
- Time matters... Daytime begins at 6am, and night falls at 8pm. Most shops in major cities close at night, the NPCs need sleep as well. Be wary being in a building when night falls, as you may find yourself trapped inside. Additionally, some quest NPCs may only be up during either day or night time.
- Broad class roles like tanking, dps, utility are more-or-less the same as Live. In other words, Warriors still tank, Clerics still heal, Wizards still nuke, Bards still sing. The subtleties from class to class are quite different though. Every class in SoD is valuable. Per the list of annoying things that will get you jailed, avoid making blanket statements about classes being useless.
- Many spells/songs, especially below 60, are the same or only tweaked a little. Spells from 61 through 65 are looted/droppable, with certain special spells (ancients, relics and archaics) on No Drop status from raid NPCs.
- Each Melee/Hybrid class has Melee Styles (stances) that are acquired automatically upon attaining certain levels. Styles can be invoked using the /style # command (/style help). Some consume endurance while others do not.
- All classes receive 10 points in Specialization at every level and 2 upon each AA (you must allocate them using /cm specialize) [This system replaced the specialize system for casters in the original game]. Different areas of specilization can help with melee damage output, avoidance, mitigation, resists, spell damage, mana consumption, etc...
- Some AAs are the same, but a few have been changed. AA tables (again, with some that are different) through POP are available. Alternate Advancement
- There are no class specific epic quests. There are quests for every level though, including very nice gear upgrades. See Quest timeline for level/class appropriate quests.
- Other Class Items:
- Pets no longer require reagents (no tiny swords for Enchanter Pet, bone chips for necro Pet, etc.)
- Necromancers no longer have the ability to give others classes their mana.
- Enchanters can control their Pet like a necro or mage Pet, which was not originally implemented in Live.
- Archery is worth something even before you put 100 AAs in it!
- Rogues poison crafting is different and very useful, similar to pre-PoP poison making.
- Feign Death follows slightly different mechanics.
- Charisma lowers the resist rate on your spells. Read this again. Charisma lowers the resist rate on your spells.
Traveling Across Dalaya
- Zones in use are mostly old world through Velious, but others up to Gates of Discord are in use. Kunark zones are forthcoming with the SoD Ikisith release. As noted, zones still use the same zone layouts, so traveling *within* a zone is similar to Live.
- Also as noted, zones aren't necessarily named or connected as they were on Live. The Karanas are now known as the Badlands, named differently, but connected the same. Another example, you can zone from East Badlands into Heartlands Plateau, old Jaggedpine Forest, and from there in Heartlands Undercaverns, old Veksar. Kaladim is now a ghost town, and an xp zone for level 20-35. Zone levels, mobs, etc., are sometimes vastly different.
- Wizards and druids will both find those port spells pretty useful and in demand since travelling is either on foot or via the Mansion of Portals. The MoP is available in certain cities and a few limited zones. You are encouraged not to linger in the MoP - it's not the safest of places. There is no Plane of Knowledge!
- Most city zones, and even some hunting zones allow *any* class to set their bind point using /cm bind. Note that you cannot change bind spots while in combat.
- Boats work and provide transit between Newport, Freeport, Goblinskull, Erudin, Storm Sea, Sea of Swords.
Combat and Casting
- Certain zones have inherent xp modifiers (both positive and negative) to encourage/discourage players to hunt there. In addition, players have a bonus for gaining xp in a new zone. This new area bonus gradually drops to an xp penalty, but resets at lvls 30, 50 and 65. Your first AA xp are gained at an accelerated rate, but AA xp area penalty is never reset.
- When selecting weapons for dual wielding melee classes, there's no damage bonus. Until you have all the requisite AAs, best ratio in primary hand always rules when comparing two 1 handers for damage output. 2 handers have a small bonus applied (Wesell parsed to be between 2-4%).
- Auxiliary Tanking: anybody, including pets, in melee and in front the mob will contribute to reducing the mob's damage.
- Mobs will not run at low health. No need to snare every mob for fear of ridiculous training. Classes that can use Intimidation can do so without fear of initiating a train.
- Mobs are much, much more resistant to spells right off the start, making Charisma THE prime stat for any offensive caster.
- Date and Time based changes. You get a 10% bonus to all heals during the day time while undead and Lifetap are both stronger at night. Seasons and weather affect the damage on elemental spells.
- Mob casters are smarter about what spells they cast, and whom they cast them upon!
Recovery and Resurrection
- Mana regen rate and XP gaining rate is different. On Live you get OOC (Out of Combat) regeneration which will restore you to full hp and mana after 3 minutes max of downtime. In SoD you get higher mana regen when medding out of combat, and will receive a message saying so (meditative trance) but your health doesn't receive a regen benefit. XP rate is different solo than in a group, and there are XP zone modifiers which can grant extra or less than average XP.
- Upon death, you spawn at your bind point with Death Fatigue. You're pretty useless (can't cast and can't attack, but do regenerate mana) for 4 minutes. You retain the Fatigue for the full 4 minutes, even if rezzed within that time (rezzing doesn't reset the 4 minute timer). You can still run, use abilities (like FD), regenerate endurance, and receive buffs in this period without problems, though.
- When receiving a resurrection, you do not get to choose whether to accept. If you run across a player corpse and are thinking being a friendly player and rezzing, asking first is a REALLY good idea.
- You do not lose exp when you die. Instead Experience Debt is acquired in percentages (maximum of 100%); you will get the same amount of debt no matter how many times you die in a row.
- You can buy off your Experience Debt from the cleric NPC (healers in most cities, plus wandering augurs in certain zones) for a small price according to your level (capped at 50 platinum)
- Your corpse contains only your Experience Debt (unless you buy off the debt from an NPC), which you will get it back when you are rezzed and loot your corpse. While corpse runs are now a thing of the past in Live, they weren't originally.
- Pristine loot code means you get roughly 10% (and on the low end, mostly rounded up!) better stats (excluding foci/advanced effects) if you loot the item yourself. Trading an item in any way results in lost pristine status.
- Bind on Equip items, which were not originally in Live. Live has Attuneable items that are similar to Bind on Equip but Bind on Equip items can be made droppable (unbind) again for a price, or sellable to vendor (unenchant) at no cost.
- There is no Bazaar; list system for buying and selling of item Listing System or Listing System
- Charms - get one! You can only fill the charm slot with this vendor purchased, progressive set of items.
- Augments are destroyed when removed, with the exception of the No Drop quested augs.
- Treasure Map. A cool way of acquiring gear from lower levels through upper end of game!
- OOC and auction channels are global channels, all zones will hear you. You start in a guild, Dalaya's Beginners, and it's highly advised that ask all "newbie" questions there.
- There are rules about using OOC. Read the overall server rules and jailable offense list: jailings and bannings
- /shout is the accepted means of communication for within your current zone.
Grouping, Raiding and Experience
- Power leveling is discouraged through Assistance Penalty for help received outside of group while fighting a creature. Many buffs are level restricted, including damage shields. Feign Death is collateral damage to this anti-PL code, and the damage/aggro produced by a group member that subsequently successfully feigns will trigger a penalty.
- Group XP bonuses... 2 players in a group get the same XP as having 3 to 6 players. Besides consideration of splitting loot, there's really no reason to not add a 3rd player or more to a group. As a matter of fact, more players in a group result in higher chance of named spawning.
- XP is distributed to all group members (slightly apportioned by level), as long as the highest level in the group gets exp from the mob (i.e. it doesn't con green to him/her). If the mob cons green to anyone in the group, it will net zero xp to everyone.
- Adventuring Band- You can form a band with other people, so that all of you will share the XP gained, even if not in a group or online. Max level gap between adventuring band members is 10 levels.
- Adepts, which are raid npc's with above average loot for the level attained with restrictions similar to Lord Nagafen and Lady Vox.
- Max number of member in a raiding group is 18 - Raid Tiers. No outside rezzers, buffers, looters. 18 is THE cap.
- There is a limit of 3 of any given class that can engage a single mob. If you have 4 mages, the 4th one will not be able to help at all.
Alignment, Religion and Faction
- Alignment system, similar to the classic D&D one; your alignment is attributed based on your actions in-game.
- Not all Deity quests are in game yet, but they are being worked and rolled-out
- Careful about what you kill. There are several lengthy quest lines, and certain NPC factions may be critical to the quest branch you choose to progress on.
Other things to keep in mind
- Bazaar is no more. There is a Listing System instead.
- Rivervale = dead and full of death touching mobs in the water the zone outside (not Kithicor, the other way) is full of death touching mobs if you go off the path. Likewise, there are death touching tendrils in Nagthilian, the dark elf city.
- Basically many of the once upon a time newbie/low level zones are now high level zones. Some of the old zones that were higher level are now lower level. Don't try to use your knowledge of the "games" zones here. Other than some connection (which isn't totally mirrored) they're very different.
- Commonlands (now known as Plaguelands, East, West, etc.) and Freeport ARE NOT for newbies, they are 50+ level zones. The zones around what use to be Commonlands are also NOT newbie zones (Neriak forest, Freeport, Kithicor Forest, North Ro, etc).
- Don't kill Aviaks in Southern Badlands, the dark skinned orcs in Oasis or the Centaurs in various zones near Newport, unless you want to screw yourself out of the Main Quest (you can kill the ones flagged as corrupted, but until you know which ones don't kill any).
- Avoid Killing mobs NPCS belonging to the Silver Crown, Blackscale Order, or the Council of Innovation, they effect the main quest and could screw you out of completing it.
- Keep those books you get at the start. They have information about the Main Quest that you cannot get the answers from in /ooc!