EQ2: Gearing Up in a New Tier
Gearing up in EverQuest II used to mean that you either had mostly treasured equipment from questing and killing solo mobs, mostly legendary gear from dungeons, or mostly fabled gear from regular raiding. Unless you have a guild on a solid raid schedule, the hope of having really good stuff was far out of reach.
The last two expansions have brought in more options allowing players, even casual players, to get a hold of some pretty decent gear for not much more than some solid player effort. We are going to take a look at some of the newer options for gearing your character and tell you how you can get some nice items that wonÂt cost you a whole lot of coin.
Shards R Us Â Tier 8
Like many players, I took a break from EQ2 to explore other games and came back to check out the SentinelÂs Fate expansion. While IÂm having a lot of fun re-learning the ropes, this break has left my main character under geared for most of the new content. I asked around about what I should do to get caught up a bit and the most common response was Âshard gearÂ.
So pretty, but just a little out of my reach.
Void shards are the ÂcurrencyÂ used in the Shadow Odyssey expansion to purchase armor, weapons, and accessories. Whether you are aiming for a nice upgrade from your mediocre tier 7 items or if you happen to be ambitious enough to shoot for the brass ring of fabled armor, the void shard system has a little something for everyone.
Shard gear comes in three tiers. The first full armor set costs a mere 45 (give or take) shards. ItÂs a good set for the average casual player and it will get you equipped well enough to get started on the Sundered Frontier content.
The second tier of shard armor costs shards plus the original piece from the first tier of shard armor and is an excellent upgrade for the player intent on getting into battlegrounds and dungeon gameplay in tier 9.
The third tier is much more difficult to get as it is raid quality gear. For each piece you wish to upgrade, you need the tier 2 piece, a mold from the shard raid zone, plus void shards. Generally there arenÂt a lot of players who would desire or need this level of shard gear, but if you are up for the challenge, then it is available!
Great! So umm, how do I get mine?
If you are level 75+ you can earn shards in the Shadow Odyssey dungeon zones. Group quests and dungeon chests are the quickest way to earn them. You can get these quests from Ragheejb Yasir in the Moors of Ykesha dropship landing zone. He offers a new quest daily that will take you into the many great dungeons of the expansion and it awards two shards upon completion. You can also find some of these shard quests in the Commonlands at the Befallen instances, in Everfrost at Miragul's Phylactery, Loping Plains from Somborn, Lavastorm, Guk, and Fens of Nathsar in OmenÂs Call. If youÂre going to be playing in these dungeons anyway, grab the shard quests before going through the door!
For those who canÂt find a group or tend to play solo or in small groups, you arenÂt left out! At level 79 you can travel to Lavastorm and speak with Pallasa Rargon in the building on the Lavastorm docks. She gives a series of easy solo quests that will unlock the ability to take quests from Marathan Allim. She will continue the series of quests that will finally give up the ability to earn a shard a day with her solo shard quest. It is a bit tedious to get through all the quests, but worth it. Once youÂve done them all, you can speak with Marathan each day and just get the repeatable shard quest.
Buying the gear is the best part. You can pick up the first two tiers from merchants on the Moors of Ykesha docks and the third tier on the Lavastorm dock. I suggest that if you are undecided on whether or not shard armor is worth it that you stop by and have a look at just how drool worthy this stuff can be.
Tier 9 Â Faction, Faction, Faction
Getting into the level 81+ content, youÂll find that solo mob drops and soloable quests really donÂt offer anything that is a real upgrade from the last tier, especially if you are already decked out in legendary or better gear.
Armor in this tier is meant to be earned but you have a few good options as to how you get that done.
You can't get all your gear with marks, but it's a good start!
Battleground tokens are one way to gear up. If you enjoy PvP at all, you can rock the battleground games and earn yourself fabled armor, weapons, and accessories that come fairly close to raid gear without ever having to step foot in a raid zone. This gear is usable outside of the battlegrounds minus the PvP specific stats so it is worthwhile to have even if you donÂt intend to use it for just PvP.
Very much like the shard armor of the previous tier, SentinelÂs Fate added another form of armor currency called a Mark of Manaar.
These are earned in pretty much the same way void shards were earned. Starting at level 85 you can pick up quests inside Paineel and outside the dungeon zones of the Sundered Frontier and Stonebrunt Highlands that will award marks. At level 89 you can get daily quests to earn marks. You can only have one of each kind of quest at a time so earning these may be slow going at first. These also come as mob drops in the SentinelÂs Fate group zones plus the instances will also have an unlockable chest that will yield a mark.
Marks of Manaar are spent in Paineel for the first tier of gear and in Moonfield Hamlet for the second tier. You canÂt actually purchase the full sets through marks alone. If you desire to have it all, youÂll have to hit up dungeons and earn the missing pieces from dungeon drops.
If youÂre a casual player and the thought of earning marks or battling in PvP makes you sleepy, then no worries, SentinelÂs Fate has some great sets available through faction merchants. Generally you can earn close to a full set just by completing the quests from a faction so you really wouldnÂt have to buy much, but if you wish, many factions have a merchant hanging around ready to take your coin in exchange for armor and shiny trinkets.
The latest gearing options offer so much more diversity. Even if you choose to not spend tons of time in dungeons or dedicate yourself to raiding, you can still get great gear at your own pace.