With the streets of Braemar nearly deserted, it was the perfect time to play with bows and arrows. I would shoot them off indoors, but I have no targets. I have no problem riddling my gothic tables with arrows, but the game denies me. What fun is that? So, out into the street I went and what should I make my target?

Hello turkey!! Now, just to make it fair, let me see how far back I can go and still make the shot. Much to my surprise, the distance on the bow is pretty damn good! I went a good 50 paces down the road and with a single shot silenced that bird. The arrow even had a nice arc and curve to it. I thought I might graze the merchant, but oh no, the arrow only had eyes for the turkey and gave the merchant a wide berth.

After jumping for joy, I locked on the other birds and without having to pull the trigger, the bow fired and dispatched each one of them. I could barely see the little devils in the dark but managed to strike them down with ease.

Since no one is really going to be impressed with felling a turkey, I skipped down the road and found that stag I always see lurking around. With a good distance separating us, I waiting until he was grazing peacefully on grass before taking aim. I used the Aimed Shot and with one flick of the fingers he was down. Oh my goodness, that was a lot of damage dealt from a healthy distance.

Wow, ok, this bow action is pretty sweet! Wish I would have messed with this sooner. All right, what else can I annihilate? Oh wait, bears!

I went off to North Ravenswood and assaulted the first bear I saw without any provocation whatsoever. There he was, out in the fields, frolicking or whatever bears do and then BAM, shot in the buttocks! He didn’t take kindly to the intrusion, but by the time he figured out where I was, I’d already put 3 more arrows into him. Then I went with the Fire Arrow so that by the time he dropped at my feet he was already medium rare.

Took down a bear without taking a single point of damage!

Hmm, what else is there? Oh, the bandit picnic, let me go over there and stir up some trouble. I hid in the bushes and picked the first couple off before they even saw me. For the ones that did see me, I decided to use Death Touch. Oh my lord!! Imagine my surprise when I reached into a man’s chest and pulled out his soul! Oh my goodness that was awesome!

With the first few bandits out of the way, I went over to the left side and cleared out the lot of them without taking a single point of damage. They all ended up face down in the pond. I even managed to ruin the bath one of them seemed to be taking in the natural spring. You’re fish food now ya sticky devil!

These Ranged skills are fun! The damage dealt can be pretty lethal and the range is pretty significant. I did end up toe to toe with a band of Skeleton Archers, but I jumped up on a ruined archway and took care of them all. There was a bit of shooting while on the run as well. I took some damage, but got rid of 3 of them and lived to tell the tale. I even used Death Touch on one of them just to see what would happen. He crumbled that’s for sure. It was great!

Aw well, time has run out for this release, but I’m gonna have some fun with this in the next one! Magic may not be my thing, but what can go wrong with archery?



Hey, this is a pretty good shot to hit the turkey from here, at night and not kill the merchant. I would have gone for the Tour Guide, but you can’t target him. And obviously I’m not going to take pot shots at Blixen. If only Halmar….


Check out the damage to the Stag from this distance with Aimed Shot. I don’t think I’ve done that much damage with melee. Either I have crap weapons or missed a critical skill in that setup. Sorry about the carnage on your doorstep neighbor. Um, you can keep that if you like.


Hmm, never noticed this before.


All right ya dirty bandit, let’s see how Fire Arrow works.


Pretty effective I’d say. Dead and on fire, just the way it should be. You might have made it had you thrown yourself into the pond. Who am I kidding? I just would have shot you again.

More brilliant musings about my adventures in New Britannia

My second day with archer skills was pretty entertaining as well as confusing. There are a ton of “arrow” skills in the tree, in fact, too many to actually put in the combat bar. Seems like there should be a few more “innate” skills rather than so many active skills. I suppose that can be a good problem to have if you know how to handle the skills. This also speaks to the benefit of the “rotating” deck where different skills come up. I have all the combat skills locked because so many were innate. If archer has so many active skills I will have to completely change my way of play and get used to the idea of the ever changing glyphs in my hand. Great, the archer is confusing enough now I actually have to think and concentrate. Curse this game!

After spending a lot of time moving points around, I went back into the woods to see the effect of my changes. I messed up and didn’t put muiltishot together, I wanted to see that in action. But the rest of the skills were pretty good. I smacked down the wolves with no trouble at all. I even took down several bears before they could lay their paws on me. Spiders are a bit tricky, especially the smaller ones, since they seem to swarm. They’re easy to run away from, but what happens when I get to the big guys? I fear the idea of being stuck in place against them. Maybe it was a glitch, but they trapped me in place and hosed my down with venom when I was in full armor and I didn’t stand a chance. Maybe I will be smart and savvy enough to defeat from a distance so that never happens. Yeah right!

I do feel the archer is far more involved that melee. With blades you sort of just swing and maybe move around when you start running out of health. With the archer it’s far more, take a shot, move to a different position and take another. You have to be far more aware of the environment, the enemies, their position and how many.

Only played for a limited time, but the archer and ranged weapons are pretty fun. I will definitely visit this setup again, once I make some progress in R14. Speaking of R14, no, I haven’t jumped over to the QA server. I will jump into R14 tomorrow night after everything resets. I wanted to see some of the new features, specifically the bank, but I didn’t feel like downloading everything again. Not really worth the time and bandwidth usage for 2 days effort that will be wiped out.

With the few hours remaining tonight, I will try a few more combinations with the archer then say goodbye to my character and all my stuff. It’s been a really good run.

More brilliant musings about my adventures in New Britannia

Since the Great Wipe is nearly at hand, I decided to mix things up a bit and shuffled points around to try my hand at archery, specifically, ranged weapons. The Amazon was a fun character from Diablo II, so I figured I’d give it a try here. Plus, I’ve seen a couple players engage in some heavy PvP and thought it looked quite interesting.

I swapped out my heavy armor for the Founder’s Armor which is much lighter. It wasn’t hard to come up with a bow, so I went with the Elven bow. Redistributing my points got tricky since multiple parts of the tree affect ranged items. To start, I just moved my Combat points to Ranged. That would be enough to give me a sense of what I was working with. And then out I went to see how I would get on against some wolves.

It took a mere 10 seconds to realized I was a bit unprepared. There are 5 kinds of arrows associated with the Archer and you need each kind for the different skills. If you just buy a bunch of the standard arrows, you only get 2 skills. I’ll be dead within minutes.

Off I trekked to Theo the Blacksmith in Owl’s Head where I bought all the arrows he had to offer. There are Bodkin arrows, Bola, Burst, Flare and Quick Draw arrows. How very confusing, not to mention incredibly expensive. Each skill needs a different arrow so when you run out the skill is no longer available and with the encumbrance feature, this could get kind of hefty. But anyway, I had a few thousand of each and was ready to try out my skills. Can your character really carry 500+ of each arrow? 2,500 arrows would be something to see.

Back in the woods, I stood on some rocks and let the arrows fly. Oddly, it worked quite well. I was able to take down multiple wolves including the wolfpack leader without much trouble. And there are some interesting combat features as well. The flame arrow takes a few seconds to conjure and then flies a great distance to the target and sets it on fire. The others inflict a fair bit of damage, but are affected by line of sight.

Feeling rather confident, I wandered over and shot some skeletons in the backside. They seem rather confused by the ranged weapons. If you stand on a rock or on a wall, you can keep plugging away at them until they drop and they just seem to run back and forth, confused as to where these nasty arrows are coming from. It was a wee bit funny. But I was able to take down several of them without taking a single point of damage.

Things got a bit more tricky when my enemies had me on the run and there was no rock to climb up. I still managed to back up and shoot, or dodge and shoot, but the camera work was a bit dizzying at times.

Time flew by as I used my new skills and shot everything that moved and even some stuff that didn’t. It was pretty damn fun though. I definitely need to move more points around and fill out the skill tree correctly. There are some very interesting combos the ranged fighter can come up with.

Once I figure out where to best apply points, this could be a fun character to play. I have no idea how I would fair in the sewers or against the Lich and I’m not sure I have time to find out this Release. I’m not sure I want to stand toe to toe with the Lich in light armor and a bow. I have enough trouble with the heavy armor and sword. I have a penchant for getting stunned and being a Lich play thing.

One thing I do know, this set is expensive! Each arrow type is 2gp a piece and you need all 5 kinds. If you get a hundred of each, which will probably last a few minutes, that’s 1000gp. That is a bit much for the starting archer to have on hand. It might be better if they were sold in bundles, like 5gp for 10 or 15. And of course if you run out, you’re screwed. You got to think ahead and that isn’t my strong suit.

For R14, I will complete some quests, craft some items, get some gold and start off with the melee attack. After a couple levels, I might switch to the ranged fighter again and see how it works out. I’m sure with enough practice and points distributed the right way it can be a good solo character. I can also see how it will be great fun in a party. There are plenty of places to get to higher ground and unleash a quiver of fury while the other take the brunt of the blow and keep the enemies occupied.

The ultimate goal? Dungeon Run as an archer. Yeah buddy!

Not solo, that’s just nutty!

More brilliant musings about my adventures in New Britannia

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