Articles - ArticlesThis is the first of a series of articles based on my extensive game experience. I have written editorials in the past with suggestions to Funcom on changes that I would like to see in AO to improve the game (some which were implemented).
These articles will be on the same subject, but it will be detailing what would I change if I was a Dev, and I will be very thorough going through each area of Rubi-Ka. Not only will I cover what I would like to change/update about my favorite game, but also what I would like to add to it, expect to read ideas about new quests and locations that could enhance the AO experience if they were ever done.
I'll start with the southern border of PW. There is a long road that goes from the north to the south border of the zone, I would think that the road would lead somewhere, or even a dead end...some kind of end right? Nope, it goes all the way to the south even past the border (you know the area which you can see but can't cross).
If I was a Dev, would I place a road leading nowhere? Nope. What I would do is place a small cyborg outpost at the south end near the end of the zone.
Unlike the places with cyborgs in the northern areas I would make it a 'sequel' to the cyborg barracks in Greater Tir County. Sure there are already borgs in PW for high levels, however there is no high level quest which relate to them. It's due.
Borgs in GTC have Commander Jocasta, so how about some new borg officers trying to create an uber borg to strengthen their force because rubikans have been reducing their numbers over the past few years?
To make it a quest available to all sides, an NPC in ICC HQ would give out the quest saying they are a danger to everyone. Players would be required to be at least level 150, with the option of taking on a solo quest or team quest (they could probably use the SL garden mission code to pull that off).
Now of course most RK quests are the same...go kill, loot, deliver item or tag something. How about something different?
You don't need to kill until the end, and no you won't have to sneak in...instead you need to INFILTRATE the borg outpost, enter it and get to the lower levels where you are to sabotage a terminal so the borgs research for the uber borg plans are delayed or destroyed.
To infiltrate you would need to talk to an NPC near the borg outpost (Cyborg Hunter) who has a spare outfit or a holographic imager that will temporarily make you look like a borg. Of course the hunter will charge you for it cause he don't give anything for free.
Now that you are able to infiltrate the outpost another problem arises (hehe, of course). Going in is easy, but access to each floor requires an access key and code. This means you need to search rooms for a key and look at terminals for the right code for each floor. These would have to be random for each person so the quest can't be just repeated. Using a card and color/number combination like Bazzit's Quest would make it interesting. Also the location of the card/terminals would be random. Oh and here is the kicker...you can't run, otherwise you may be suspected so you got to walk if you are near a borg; I'm not sure if this could be done (if a mob could recognize if you are running or walking) but it would sure add some intensity.
Now that would be a nice quest. Let's move on to the middle of the zone, to be exact the area where The General's Right Hand and the Masked Commando Elites which are level 250+ are located. Of course those mobs are already for high levels and they carry some ok loot for those without SL/AI expansions.
However it's been a long time since they were placed there, and nothing new has been added. The buildings nearby could be used to create a Dust Brigade underground compound with some new DB loot or (finally) some rewards which give a clue as to who/whom/what is behind the terrorist organization. It's been a while since I did any high level RK missions, so the buildings could already be in used by the automated mission system but I think they could easily remove those locations from the system and add a new static dungeon.
Let's move east and get to the cyborg outpost near the former OT mining base. The outpost looks like abandoned with a handful of borgs walking around. What caught my eye is that a QL 200-300 Notum field was right next to it. Nice if you're into PvP and want to take a shot at taking down some towers...gather in a couple of empty buildings (yes you can enter them), buff up and start sending PvP'ers in waves and the base owners won't exactly know where the attackers are coming from cause they'd be flying around trying to spot a gathering place.
However, I personally would rather see the outpost moved more NE, perhaps turning it into some borg training camp instead full of borgs.
Further north we can see Harbinger of the General and the Masked Commando Elites (also level 250+). They have been standing there forever, but what are they guarding? are they waiting on a pizza deliver or something?
Not everything needs to have an obvious purpose, but mobs which have been mentioned in the storyline and placesd at the front page of stories should be more interesting than standing in the middle of nowhere. What I mentioned before about DB could be 'recycled' in this spot as well, with an entrance to another underground compound, perhaps identical to the first or a smaller version of it. Another nice dungeon for high levels is always good.
Now comes one of my former favorite places on RK, the old OT mining base and mining outpost where people usually try and get the Cyborg Token board. Back in the day (before NW mind you) people would come to the area to kill borgs in team (as some still do in Mort). However now is more desolate and on top of that there is a small notum field close to buildings which are entrances to mid-high level RK missions in the mining base.
I would move the notum field bit northeast, sorta between the mining base and the mining outpost.
Moving on to the outpost, it's been there forever like most RK places, but one of the interesting things is the large green 'toxic lake' next to it. If I was a Dev (let me dream) I would expand the lake into about half the outpost and create a 'trench' so that it would appear the borgs stopped the flow by creating a channel through the place leading to...I dunno an underground well or something.
West from the lake there is a small outpost with borgs that have buildings which can be entered (don't think they are used for RK missions). How about adding some NPC's...like former omni miners with the story as to how they had to abandon the outpost because of borgs attacks and then getting stuck in the area because OT would not send a transport or something like that?
Maybe even make an omni quest out of it, to 'rescue' the old miners and get a transport to them so they can get back to Omni-1. Of course the corporation is full of paperwork and request and whatnot, so the quest would be mostly talking to NPC's trying to convince them to approve a shuttle/ship to be sent to rescue the old employees.
Flying west I get to the old Mantis Hive. Taking a good look, most of them are level 70ish, what kind of a hive is this with such low level mobs? In PW they should be 150+. The place is nice, it has a hive feel to it, just not the mobs to make it realistic. Another thing...hive with no Queen?
An easy (and cheap) solution would be to copy the mantis layout of the Smuggler's Den and put an entrance to it in the hive (of course without the Smugglers area in it).
Flying a bit southwest the town of Sabulum greets those who are lost (or the owners of the nearby player cities). A few years back the omni/clan players fought over it both claiming it for their side, in the end it became neutral somehow (which was inconsistent with the way both sides roleplayed...it should have become clan, but that's my opinion).
That town is DEAD, there is no reason for it to exist except for looks (it does look nice). If I could I'd make some changes to get it more lively, for example adding a Whom-Pah from Borealis would be good since that town is crowded a lot (it does cause some lag sometimes). I would also remove the mantises and cyborgs that roam inside the town, put a few guards at the entrance of the town (and by the Whom-Pah). Some nice new shops (with big signs) including a Luxury Supplies Shop to get a low QL yalm (which is what most new players look for once they get enough creds to buy one). And adding some nice NPC's with stories of the town wouldn't hurt either.
Last but not least far south from Sabulum there is an small old place called Tranquility, abandoned, with mantises in it. What intrigues me is that in the middle of it is some sort of cargo ship with the landing/cargo door open yet you cannot enter it, a corpse of a Knight (Knights of Avalon, Legacy Clan) is on the ground and 2 buildings (one right outside half buried) can be entered. The gate have chimes hanging from the top which surprises me a bit because I never noticed them before. It just shows you how much detail the Devs put into the place. However improvement is always good right?
Next to the town are windmills, so right there I thought 'quest for windmill parts'...sounds lame, but if you give a decent reward it would be a nice quest to do. Having a single tough inhabitant as the 'last remaining resident of Tranquility' would add a touch to the place, a tough old man who protects his home and refuses to leave no matter how many mantises he has to kill daily. Of course keeping his place mantis free means he has no time to get parts for one of his windmills which need repair, which is where you the player come in. Having to go and buy something to find some crazy trader in...Sabulum (aha! another use for that place) to exchange something you need to loot from a certain mob for the part(s) the old man in Tranquility needs.
And with that, I end the first article of Dreams of Anarchy. Please remember these are suggestions based on what I would do if I was an AO Dev. Maybe one of them will read this and use an idea or two, I can only hope. Anything can happen in AO, trust me on that.
Until next time Rubi-Ka!
Article written by Windguaerd
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