Getting Started: New Player Guide

This guide was written by a member of the Requiem community, Sacasa, and is geared towards helping new players get acquainted with the server.

Table of Contents

Preface
1. Making your first character
2. Unique systems of note

2.1. Infusion and Animus
2.2. Legacy points
2.3. Hunger and Thirst
2.4. KO, Injuries and you
2.4. Interface (skills and codex)2.4.1. Skills

2.4.1. Skills

2.4.2. Codex

2.5. Permadeath and Mortality
2.6. Sanity and Torment
2.7. Noteworthy commands (by Mila)
2.8. A little about stats, skills, and perks

2.8.1. A special note on weapon skills, which do not work the same as in OSI.

2.8.2. Details about each stat and their effects on your character.

2.9 Item Research

3. Getting started, your first week

3.1. Playstyle
3.2. The things every survivor needs

3.2.1. Crafters

3.2.2. Combatants

3.3. When in doubt, ask – and stay connected!

4. Time is a flat circle: the present situation

Preface

This is the revised draft of my guide aimed at complete beginners to the Requiem experience. Its core purpose is to familiarize players with the mechanics that are unique to Requiem. Often, these are the things that experienced players take for granted and beginners are baffled at. My perspective is that of an established player who has had a chance to try a reasonable variety of roles, though I’ve mostly played the game as a crafter. This guide will not help you with general UO concepts such as how skills are gained most efficiently (beyond a superficial brush) and how the combat system works (slightly unique here). I recommend getting in touch with veteran players for advice that pertains to your situation. If you are just getting started out, this guide probably works the best if you glance through it once and then return to specific terms when they become relevant.

This guide consists of three major parts. The first section details the things you should consider while your Quarantine Visa is still waiting for approval – there’s a lot you can get done even at this phase! Moving on, the second section gives you information on the most important mechanics and details of the game system. This is likely the part that is the most relevant to you even if you have already gotten started. Finally, the third section gives you some perspective from my point of view. The last part of the guide should be taken with a grain of salt – play the game the way you want to, not the way I find optimal. Hopefully, my account can help you to prepare for the challenges I encountered, however.

Please feel free to provide feedback on the contents of the guide. Moreover, responses detailing any important newbie revelations you have had are greatly appreciated. If you notice typos or small factual errors, please send me a PM and I will update the guide. Otherwise, feel free to comment and share your perspective!

1. Making your first character

Here is a link to a post which will help you to connect to the server and to create an account: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=952

You can already make your character while your application is pending. Any choices you make at this point are irrelevant. Do not stress about skills, ability scores or even the color of your skin. When you enter the game, you will revise all those choices with The Songmaker. Your first action should be to double click The Songmaker NPC. Worried about your name being too long? Not a problem – that can be adjusted too in the character creation process which starts in game. A link to a specific guide: viewtopic.php?f=33&t=613

I recommend that you familiarize yourself with some lore topics from the Hall of Wisdom and take a look at the available skills before creating your first character (or even writing your application). Stat cap of 350 and skill cap of 700 mean that you cannot do everything at once, especially since HP/STA/Mana are not linked to STR/DEX/INT. There are, furthermore, a fair amount of unique skills you may not be familiar with.

Join our Discord! You can ask specific questions there and using the program is a good way of staying in touch with the community: https://discordapp.com/invite/RmWKqTD

It is possible to increase your skill cap by spending Animus, but this is not likely to be a concern early on (see section 2.7. for the command). There is no upper limit to the amount of skill cap you can get with Animus, but the cost of increasing your skill cap will increase gradually. I have very nearly made it to 900 skill points over a year. Therefore, I recommend considering the extended skill cap a luxury rather than something you should plan on having before your build becomes viable. This is especially true because increasing your skill cap does not increase your lifetime animus (see 2.1. for more information).

At this stage, you will also choose your Birthsign. It will modify the cost of some skill-related perks you will be able to obtain in-game with Animus points (explained in section 2). In my experience, the Birthsign you choose does not matter terribly, but it may be good to know about the Animus cost breaks if you know which skills you want to level up. You can definitely pick for RP flavor and not suffer for it. Here’s a guide related to Birthsigns: viewtopic.php?f=33&t=614

In addition, you may wish to take a look at these tools made by Wyrmlance. They include a skill & stat calculator, as well as a program for determining the current date: viewtopic.php?f=33&t=3677

As a general rule, preparation early on saves you a lot of trouble later on. You can decrease stat points and skills, which gives you flexibility if you end up taking your character in a new direction. Few things are truly permanent. Except for death, in some cases (see 2.5.).

If you are thinking about for a second or a third character, then you should probably take a look at the Secondary/Tertiary Application Primer. There are some special requirements in place for unlocking the 2nd and 3rd character slots beyond the Legacy point cost. It is all detailed here: viewtopic.php?f=47&t=1777

2. Unique systems of note

This is the meat of the guide. I will do my best to open up some mechanics unique to the server while explaining how they can be accounted for. As a new player, you are most likely interested in character progression. Therefore, we’ll start there before moving on to other vital topics such as hunger and permadeath. You want to stay alive for as long as you can, don’t you?

2.1. Infusion and Animus

Infusion is a resource you earn from various in-game activities, such as crafting and monster-slaying. Moreover, you gain a standard rate of Infusion (250 per hour) whether you are online or not. A kindling bonus is added to this rate based on the amount of players who are currently online. The amount of Infusion you can earn each day is limited to 10,000 – or 10 Animus. This daily cap is not affected by your hourly infusion regeneration. Therefore, you can expect to earn up to 16 Animus each day if you reach the cap and kindling bonus is not factored in. In addition, you can earn Animus for exploring and by learning new words of power (you magic-using heathens). These do not count against your daily cap.

As you may have gathered from the above, every 1,000 points of Infusion you gain grants you a single (1) point of Animus. In other words, you could view infusion as fragments of Animus, which is the currency that you use to purchase various things such as stat points, skills and skill-related perks. You can also spend Animus to increase your skill cap (see 2.7.), but it is probably wise to reach that cap (700 by default) before worrying about spending animus there. In addition, Animus is spent in the creation of Moriums – something that will interest you if you are planning on being a mage. Some spells require Moriums to function. The use and creation of Moriums (and the magic system in general) is better explained here: viewtopic.php?f=33&t=3343

Please note that all skills and perks are not equally cost-efficient. The cost of skill-related perks is modified by your Birthsign and some skills cost more to max out with Animus than others. I have also observed that the early levels of many skills are cheaper to raise than their mid and late levels. Ideally, you do not want to spend all your Animus at once, though it may be tempting. Many skills can be leveled with regular use and you have a 50% chance to gain a stat point every time you earn a single Animus. Moreover, there are instances where you may reach a high level in a skill without the ability to actually make use of it. Planning how you use your Animus will save you a lot of headache later on. That said, don’t just ignore it! The amount of Animus you can pool is limited by your soul potential. By definition, this amount is 100 Animus, which can be reduced by the amount of Mortality you have.

A note on lifetime Animus: Every point of Animus you spend (with the exception of using Animus to increase skill cap) is added to your lifetime total. When your character dies permanently and you roll a new one, the new character receives 75% of your lifetime Animus and any unspent Animus you had when your previous character perished. If you have Providence (you have 1 point by default), you can choose to spend it to gain 100% of your lifetime Animus to your new character. Additional Providence can only be earned via special events and character actions. Finally, your character slots do not share a lifetime pool. Therefore, if you have 30 Legacy points, your account is 60 days old and you use the Legacy Points to purchase an additional character slot, your second character in the second slot would have a fresh lifetime Animus pool.

2.2. Legacy points

In addition to earning Infusion/hour, you also accrue a single Legacy point for every day your character exists. Legacy points are used for special dye options, unlocking extra character slots (you’ll have to apply for the characters separately) and so on. You can access the Veteran Reward Menu with the [legacy command.

Here’s a handy reference by Dialectic for your dy(e)ing needs: viewtopic.php?f=33&t=3007

2.3. Hunger and Thirst

You start the game with some bread and water. If you already ate/drank some, you probably saw your hunger/thirst climb up. That is a good thing. Ideally, you want to keep both values close to 100%. There is a benefit for not being totally stuffed all the time, however: while not in combat, you can use food to restore stamina. Presently, you can drink while in combat, which also restores stamina. If your hunger or thirst drops to 40% or so, you will suffer damage from hunger/thirst pangs. At 10%, you lose Animus every ten minutes or so! If you remain at 0% for too long, you can starve to death – permanently! Don’t starve.

Finding food can be a little difficult, but you can solve the problem by investing in about 10 Agriculture, which allows you to harvest corn with some success. The real bit of trouble is that you will run out of water quickly if you do not obtain a waterskin. Waterskins are made by players who have enough skill in tailoring. There are other drinks available, but waterskin is the only container you can keep refilling from wells and rivers! Just.. make sure the water you are drinking is actually clean!

2.4. KO, Injuries and you

Being reduced to zero hit points causes a brief bout of unconsciousness (Knocked Out). When you are Knocked Out, you lose some Infusion (not Animus). If your Animus pool is 0 at that time, you have a chance of gaining Mortality. While you are Knocked Out, NPC monsters will stop attacking you and you generally have enough time to limp away once you come to your senses. Your stats are penalized by 5 points for a minute following your first KO.

When you are Knocked Out (0 hp) or suffer fall damage, you have a chance to acquire an injury. Essentially, injuries add debuffs to your character. You should see a player doctor to reduce the healing time (it can get fairly long), but you will eventually heal from most injuries with time alone.

Finally, multiple KOs within a short amount of time (15 minutes) incur cumulative penalties. This results in a longer recovery time and increasingly severe penalties (including the stat penalty which follows every KO). You can monitor your current KO count in [codex -> Death. Please note that your KO count decreases slowly by 1 point per 15 minutes – it does not reset entirely. In other words, if you get KO’d more than twice within 15 minutes, it is probably wise to be very careful for a while.

Always log out in a safe location.

2.4. Interface (skills and codex)

The Requiem interface looks a bit different from vanilla UO, but that should not cause you undue trouble. The Journal is still Journal and Status gives you the interface you are used to seeing. However, there are two screens that might surprise you at first. One of them you might miss altogether.

2.4.1. Skills

Ultimately, the skills menu does exactly what you’d expect it to do. It shows you the amount of skills you have, divided into categories. You navigate the categories by clicking the icons. Upon exploring the skills menu, you can click the green “okay” next to a skill to explore it further.

Inspecting an individual skill reveals the unique functionality of the skills menu. This is where you can spend Animus to raise a skill (the boxes above the green arrow pointing up tell you how much a single point of skill costs in Animus). Reducing a skill is free, but it does not refund animus that you have spent. Moreover, on the right side of the menu you can see the skill-related perks associated with the skill you are inspecting. It is all right to click the green “okay” next to a perk. This takes you to yet another screen that gives you details about the perks and the conditions you need to fill in order to obtain it. The blue diamond has a white check mark when you possess a perk – an empty diamond indicates that you do not have the perk yet. I recommend you spend some time just exploring the skills menu. It is quite nifty!

2.4.2. Codex

I stumbled upon the Codex when I asked how I can keep track of my hunger/thirst levels without consuming anything. The Codex (found in your Paperdoll menu or accessed with the [codex command) tells you this and more. To sum it up, the Codex is your Character Sheet; it contains almost everything important about your character. Please take some time to familiarize yourself with the Codex.

While most of the Codex’s functions are fairly self-evident or well explained, there are two I want to mention in particular. Firstly, the small icons at the bottom of the Codex interface are actually separate tabs that you can explore by clicking them. Secondly, the Body tab contains a button that allows you to open your Statistics Menu (press the green “okay), which lets you spend the stat points you have earned by gaining Animus. As an aside, the green “okay” in the Statistics Menu purchases stat points with Animus – use with care.

When you open [codex, you may notice that there is a field for bonus Animus. I introduce the concept of bonus Animus here because it is not necessarily something you can grind. However, it is good to know that you must redeem any bonus Animus you earn (you will get a pop up notification when you do) before it is applied to your Animus pool. If your total Animus approaches your soul potential, you should not be able to redeem bonus Animus if it would cause you to exceed your soul potential (default 100 minus Mortality). Otherwise you redeem all of your bonus animus at once when you click the green “okay” button. It is my understanding that you can earn bonus Animus for exemplary role-playing and active participation (writing stories and guides) and so forth.

2.5. Permadeath and Mortality

Permadeath, permanent character death, is a feature of the Requiem UO Shard. It is essentially what it sounds like. When you suffer Permadeath, it is all over for your current character. Mortality is a mechanic that is tied to your chance to suffer Permadeath instead of a KO – the higher your Mortality, the higher your chance of dying for good. There are three major ways in which Permadeath can touch you:

Firstly, you can be killed by your fellow players. Just like PVP in general, this is an act that is not done lightly, but it remains a possibility. You might get burned for witchcraft or you yourself might kill someone to keep your diabolic arts a secret. Moreover, dark rumors intimate that you might harvest unspent Animus from your unfortunate victims.

Secondly, your Mortality increases your chance to be Permakilled instead of KO’d when you reach 0 hp. Note that RED mobs have a chance to increase your Mortality if they KO you – this can trigger a roll to PD you even if your Mortality is 0! Other sources of Mortality are: Permakilling other player characters, Morium failure (you heathens) and being KO’d with 0 Animus in your pool – another reason never to spend it all at once. If you see a RED player, well, the good news is that they probably have a high Mortality. This guide does not endorse heroism, however! Fly, you fool. Mortality decreases by 1 point every 15 days if you have accrued any.

Thirdly, you can die due to starvation. Permanently. Best not forget to eat and drink!

.. you monster. You want to know how to become a RED player, don’t you? Let’s just say that if you Permakill three players within two weeks or so, you will get to enjoy this prestigious tint. You perform this murderous feat by double clicking a dagger or another bladed weapon and targeting the KO’d body of a player. Best not get overly murderous if you are the covert type. Of course, sometimes you just can’t help it. It might bring you some solace to know that the RED status fades with time. Unless you kill again. You monster.

2.6. Sanity and Torment

Sanity is not yet implemented, but it appears to be treatable by player doctors. Some situations may cause your character’s psyche undue stress, although there are some calm places as well. A high Intelligence score will reduce the amount of sanity you lose under duress.

Torment. The affliction that creeps into your system and changes you into a ravenous beast. Mechanically, the Codex features a gauge under the Mind tab. You can use a gas mask to reduce the chance of being infected. However, some Afflicted seem to have a vendetta against masks. Torment may not be a major concern when you are just getting started out, but it is best to be aware of the threat it poses. Most characters would know not to stand in tainted blood. Avoid contact when possible. Seasoned explorers recommend total body coverage when dealing with the afflicted. Of course, farmers have their own ways of making Torment sprout where you might not expect it.

2.7. Noteworthy commands (by Mila)
[checkinjuries – Provides an overview of your current injuries.
[Codex – Brings up your character information: Animus, Stats, Sanity, description among other things can be checked here
[combatmessages – Used to disable and enable messages which give detailed combat information.
[Drag – To Drag / carry downed or KOed people
[Examine – Used to look on other people and items’ descriptions. You have a chance of gaining 1 animus on the first time you examine someone.
[e – Access to emotes that are useful for role-playing. Alternative command: [emote
[Help – Will bring up a list of all available commands.
[IncreaseSkillCap – Allows you to check how much it would cost to increase your current skill cap by spending Animus and shows you the command required to do so. Note that Animus spent on increasing your skill cap is not added to your lifetime Animus pool.
[ItemID – Allows you to view the individual properties of a piece of equipment you have in detail. You can do this even if you lack the skill, as long as the base item is already identified. For instance, this is how you look at the resistances your armor provides (or how much STR a weapon requires).
[mycommands
[rollmenu – Lets you roll various checks using your skills, stats and dice.
[time – Lets you check the current time.


While there are a few many commands IG, these are the basic starting set you should get used to at first.

(I left out the language command because it is disabled presently. The above text was first introduced by Mila in another post and later expanded by me. Important to note: you have a chance of gaining Animus every time you [Examine a player character you have not examined previously! A huge gain when you’re just getting started.)

2.8. A little about stats, skills and perks

As mentioned above, you can explore skills and perks in the skills menu. I am going to talk a little about how to approach skills from the perspective of year-old munchkin. I would advise against spending Animus to raise skills unless you cannot find a way to raise a skill manually. For instance, the fighter types often cite that fighting skills are relatively easy to raise simply by fighting. The martial starting skill packages seem popular among the fighter people I’ve talked to (gives you basic grinding proficiency without having to suffer through the very earliest ranks, which might make you spend Animus). This might change now that your hit chance is not tied to your weapon skill, however! Similarly, I know from experience that you can raise Geology and Horticulture from 0% by tapping natural resources such as normal trees and mountainsides instead of nodes, which require some skill to access. The earliest nodes require about 10% skill to access – not too bad when it comes to spending Animus, but you can get 100% skill in Geology and Horticulture without spending a single point of Animus or touching a node. Another nifty trick: you can smelt ore one by one to raise blacksmithing from 0 to 10 fairly easily without losing heaps at once! Similar creative solutions might exist elsewhere, too. On the other hand, there are some skills you need to raise with Animus before you can hope to gain them normally. I am not sure if you can pick anything with 0% Agriculture, for instance. Furthermore, Agriculture is a fine example of a skill with dead spots (moments where advancement is impossibly or way too hard without spending Animus). I was stuck at 46.4% Agriculture despite two days of harvesting various nodes and the next node (in difficulty) requires 55% skill to access. There are also skills, mainly Allopathy, that do you no good until you know how to make use of them. Once again, I recommend familiarizing yourself with the skills you want to use. Ultimately, you’ll have to judge when you want to spend Animus yourself.

While we are talking where to spend Animus, I feel that the skill-related perks will likely drain a good portion of your resources. They seem to give notable benefits, though not all are created equal. For instance, a harvester might think that Prospecting is a good perk, but do you really need to know how many nodes there are within 15 tiles? You’ll still have to look them up manually. Most crafters I have talked to recommend investing in Infusion Focus perks, which enhance your ability to grind extra infusion while harvesting and producing goods. When it comes to stat points, your playstyle will dictate how to spend Animus. As a crafter, I have been perfectly content with the natural stat point increases from gaining Animus. However, two more advanced fighters have recommended spending some Animus on stat points instead of skills (since fighting skills gain relatively easily). Keep an eye on those perks, though!

2.8.1. A special note on weapon skills, which do not work the same as on OSI.

On Requiem, your hit chance is not tied to your weapon skills. Instead, you use weapon skills (in conjunction with tactics) to unlock special weapon maneuvers, which consume stamina to use. Each weapon type has their own specials and all weapon skills have their own flavor. Therefore, your primary reason for increasing a weapon skill is to qualify for the special maneuvers and skill-related perks. The perks offer useful advantages such as increased critical chance and damage with your weapon(s) of choice. Additionally, your active weapon skill is compared to that of your target. Having the same skill as the attacker means a higher chance of evading their blows. Consequently, you may want at least one high level weapon skill to ensure that your hits land the target despite any matching weapon skill they might have in addition to Parrying and/or Finesse. It is my understanding that you can benefit defensively from having a small amount of every weapon skill, though that is not necessarily a thing you need to build for. You do not need to be using a weapon related to the skill you are defending against.

It is worth noting that your special moves cost 15 stamina to use, but the cost is reduced if you have more than 500 points in combat skills that are not Stratagems (such as Stratagem: Finesse or Stratagem: Raging).

2.8.2. Details about each stat and their effects on your character.

What do the stats do, though? You can access a description in the Statistics Menu (Codex -> Body), which you will also see when making your character. The key thing to notice here is that you will have to spend your 350 points on six major stats: STR/DEX/INT, HP/Stamina/Mana. Best account for that! I started with 50 hp because I was not planning to get hit a lot. Even the weaker monsters can hit you for 10 damage if you are unarmored, so I do not recommend a low HP value. Each stat can be increased up to 125 points. However, the effects of STR, DEX and INT are subject to diminishing returns starting at 90 points. You can surpass the hard limit of 125 points temporarily by using potions, mantras or enchanted equipment. How to arrange your starting stats is something you should discuss with more experienced players in order to get advice that relates to you build. Lastly, there are some things you should know about each stat:

STRENGTH: Affects your parry chance up to 80 STR. It is sometimes rolled to resist plague, heh. Equipment has strength requirements. STR also increases your melee damage and your ability to carry things, but both are affected by diminishing returns which start at 90 STR.

DEXTERITY: Has an effect on your dodge chance. While the bonus is not limited (as the STR bonus to parrying is), the diminishing returns still start at 90 points. Wearing medium or heavy armor disables your chance to dodge. Affects your swing speed.

INTELLIGENCE: Will help you to maintain your sanity. More INT means more control slots (1 per 10), faster crafting speed and better results for researching recipes. You start with a chance to research a recipe copy with 1-0 uses and the potential uses go up by +1 for every 15 points of INT you have. That being a case, a character with 15 intelligence can only craft recipe copies with 1 to 1 uses. A character with 30 INT would get recipes with 1-2 uses and I would get recipes with 1-4 uses at 60 INT on my crafter. If you are an aspiring mage, you should notice that intelligence affects the range of you spells. Moreover, INT has an effect on the power of your spells and the rate at which you regenerate mana. Light armor does not restrict mana regeneration, whereas medium cuts it by half and heavy armor disables it entirely.

HIT POINTS: Hit points can be increased by wearing high quality clothes or armor.

STAMINA: Almost all types of crafting consumes some stamina, but the consumption is really notable with gathering skills. Every 25 ranks of the relevant skill reduces the stamina consumption by 1 point: -5 at 0, -4 at 25, -3 at 50, -2 at 75 and finally -1 at 100 skill. Special moves use stamina and wearing armor incurs a max stamina penalty.

MANA: Is not used for weapon specials. You may need mana if you craft some arcane items (ink).

As you may have gathered by now, there are several conditions that inflict stat penalties. Regular KOs and injuries are both likely to hinder you, but there is one more stat mechanic you should be aware of: darkness. You will lose a small amount of stats at night and in dark places. This loss can be countered either partially or completely by having a light source (torches, lanterns) and Night Sight (from potions, spells and item enchantments – it stacks). Moreover, the stat penalty is at its harshest in the darkest of places and during the darkest hours of the night, but it will gradually diminish as your surroundings get brighter.

2.9 Item Research

Presently, Aurora’s magic guide offers the best overview of researching and enchanting, which is not covered in my guide: viewtopic.php?f=33&t=3343

Item Research is a perk which is found under Lore -> Item Identification in the skills menu. You need 30% skill in Item Identification to buy it. As the perk description details, you need the following items in order to conduct research:

  • Acacia Gum (You need about 30% horticulture and the Harvesting I perk to get this from Acacia Trees)
  • A Research Book (crafted by artisans – it can fail even at 100+ skill)
  • Beeswax (found in bee hives – about 30% horticulture should get you all the plant materials you need for research if you take the Harvesting I perk to actually get secondary resources)
  • Drafting Ink (made by artisans, but you need horticulture to gather blue flowers, which you then turn into paste with a plant mortal and then into drafting ink with a paint kettle)
  • Vellum (artisans, from logs with a pulp vat)
  • In addition to the above, heretics may need small soul pieces (read: Moriums), which are made from their own Animus or found as loot, to perform magical research. Researching ordinary, non-magical items should not take Moriums.
  • You always need an item to research, of course! It can be a power word or a mundane object, such as a new kind of shield you found as regular loot.

As mentioned in Aurora’s guide, you can open the research book as if it was a container. When you click the book once, you open a context menu which gives you the option to Start Researching and Stop Researching. You must place the required components (usually: acacia gum, beeswax, drafting ink, vellum and the item you are researching) inside the book before you may begin. The end result is a recipe copy, the quality of which depends on your INT (see 2.8.2. for more).

Research progresses in real time while you are online and you may have only one active project at a time. The speed at which you conduct research depends on your skill which is linked to the item you are researching. For example, mages depend on their Artisanry skill to speed up their power word and mantra research. Notice that you need to actually know a power word before you can research or craft anything based on it – including the word itself! The same is not true for other kinds of research. For instance, you can research a regular claymore to obtain a recipe copy which will let you or someone with smithing skills and perks to create a better version of the blade. Just remember that your skill at smithing determines how fast you research the claymore recipe copy.

3. Getting started, your first week

Of all the sections in the guide, this is the one that you should take with a grain of salt. Approach the game in a way you find enjoyable. To me, that often means a good dose of seeking optimal gains and advancement. Your Requiem may be sung differently.

3.1. Playstyle
By playstyle, I refer to how you are going to spend your time here. Will you hunt monsters, craft goods, sit by the bonfire or sneak and steal? I will mostly talk about how I survived my first week as a crafter, but I will also detail what little I know about monster hunting. However you play, a little bonfire-sitting and interacting with other players is likely a good idea – it’s important to make connections, for you cannot do everything alone.

As for your playstyle – give some thought to what you really enjoy doing in this game. It will go a long way towards planning your skills and enjoying your stay here. What do you want to be able to do?

What I think you should be able to do is twofold: firstly, you will need a way of actually accomplishing something in game. Perhaps it is as simple as being the town drunk whose main priority is to actually get drunk. In that case, this step is easy. However, you may also need specific tools for harvesting or the slaying of monsters and men. If you are a mage, you will definitely want to get your hands on power words sooner rather than later. Secondly, you will need a way of earning Infusion so that you may cap your Animus should you feel like it. You can do this either by the means of combat, crafting or gathering. Some skills work together wonderfully. For instance, skinning greatly augments Infusion gains from killing mobs. Getting started here can be as simple has making sure you can use a harvesting sickle to pick up flowers, which will let you advance your artisanry and cap at the same time!

3.2. The things every survivor needs
Try to get yourself a torch, at least. The nights are dark and torches are superior to lanterns in the amount of light they provide! You can’t even cheese the darkness with Razor, after all. You should try to find a waterskin as well. Other than that, you might want barbering scissors and a razor to deal with hair growth. A brush allows you to access secondary hairstyles for each hair length. Give some thought to the gear you’ll need in order to perform your role: arrows for archers, armor for melee folks! Crafters should likely start by looking for gathering tools. Rare is the crafter that gets to hop around without even a single gathering skill.

Once you’ve entered the game properly, you’ll notice that silver is not wisely spent on NPC merchants unless you absolutely have to. The purpose of NPC merchants is to offer you some crucial tools and components (even food) you might not find otherwise, but other players will almost always be able to make you any goods that you need for a highly competitive cost.

3.2.1. Crafters
When I started playing, the first problem I ran into as a crafter was storage. I was simply not able to hold all the goods I had harvested. Learning about the tent helped a bit, but I had to purchase property in order to stash my goods away. Depending on the situation in game, reliable player housing may not be an option. It is likely necessary to team up with other players if you hope to have a place for your goods. In general, making contact with your fellow players is critical for surviving your first week as a crafter. In the worst case scenario, you do not have any applicable combat skills to slay monsters for coin (and the weakest things may not even drop coin).

Indeed, the issue of making coin ties to the second major problem I ran into as a crafter. I kept spending silver faster than I was making it. As a novice crafter, most of my goods were not instant sellers and I needed a lot of tools on top of my flat’s rent to keep gaining skills. My solution was to become a sort of an all-crafter, able to harvest all the resources I need for my trade while also making the tools I use in crafting. However, this left me with a very tight skill budget (and many crafting skills I was still not able to access). Upon further consideration, I believe that mixing some combat ability in your crafter build may allow you greater freedom. In addition, you may want to get in touch with other players in hopes of securing support. The players I have met have been very generous about helping a newbie, so don’t be shy! Connections are everything when you start thinking about serious money-making later on.

As a reminder, it really pays off to investigate the skills you are going to use. Though I said my first problem was storage, I was actually unable to progress at all for a few days because I did not have enough skill to harvest the reagents I required. I had spent my early Animus foolishly and had to find Other Things To Do in game while waiting for it to regenerate. I was taken to a few hunting trips, which helped me to understand the lay of the land better. It is not a bad idea to seek similar opportunities, but you do gain a fair bit of Infusion simply by crafting.

In hopes of giving you some concept seeds, I will present some crafter archetypes here:

  • A pure crafter goes for all of everything you find interesting. Slow to level, tight skill budged, flexible.
  • A specialized crafter picks one skill to specialize on and then builds their support skills around it. For instance, a blacksmith needs supplies from many different skills, but a lot of the components take a fairly low amount of skill to make. In this particular example, I would use the extra wiggling room to fit in skinning and some combat skills so that you can also get the secondary components you need for most smithing endeavors. The same could be said for alchemy, where animal parts are a huge part of many recipes.
  • A dabbler is probably an advanced concept, but you could easily get just the bare minimum of skills to make a few potions / other items that you or your friends need. Perhaps you will have only 50 alchemy and 40 agriculture for some convenient boosts! You could easily fit 10.1 BS there to smelt iron for your buddies. Of course, the catch is that you really have to know what you want to craft in order to pull this off.
  • Pure gatherer is a concept I’ve wanted to try for some time. People who can obtain resources are always valued. If you get 100 agriculture, 100 skinning, 100 horticulture and 100 geology, you will have 300 points for combat skills which should allow you to slay many mobs for their valuable parts. You might even get to have one crafting skill that makes use of your superior gathering and slaying skill.

3.2.2. Combatants
I do not know that much about the struggles combatants face with their resources, but I understand you generate silver via slaying monsters and gathering useful goods. Skinning can be a very helpful profession here. Furthermore, some monsters drop valuable loot and sometimes even copper and silver.

For gearing up, I recommend you get in touch with other players. Posting on the forums or asking around on the Discord channel are your best bets. Leather armor seems to have special synergy with mages (a full set allows for dodging and mana regen), so you might want to think about getting at least 20 str even if you go full mage.

In addition to gearing up, keeping your items in top notch is going to be a challenge. The skill that was used to create an item is also used for maintaining it. Repairing an item can lead to loss in Max Durability, but we have observed that high skill and early repairs lead to fewer durability losses than attempting to fix something that is already battered or falling apart. Once again, you should really get in touch with other players to make sure your equipment will not break on you.

Here’s some combatant archetypes I’ve seen or tried:

  • A full plate warrior relies on parry and heavy armor to stay in the fight while lopping off heads left and right. This kind of build can easily consume all your 700 skill points, but it is possible to set around 100 points aside for an useful gathering skill (such as skinning or geology). Although having only 100 blacksmithy with no other crafting skills will not make it easy for you to craft anything, it is just about enough to maintain your gear yourself if you don’t let it get battered or worse. Parry-based fighters consume a ton of shields, but the rest of their equipment is usually better off for it.
  • Weapon master is a concept that has surfaced with the recent changes to how weapon skills work. The idea is to have multiple weapon skills at a high level so that you will always have good defenses no matter who you are fighting against. In addition, this ensures that you can always try to poke your opponent in a weak spot in their defense. You might tweak this concept by having two weapon types to focus on or one main type of weapon and a small investment in all other weapon types.
  • Mages are fairly straightforward when it comes to the skills they need and I would still read Aurora’s guide for a better overview (it lists several archetypes). When you are just getting started, I’d recommend investing in General Arcana, after which you can branch out in one of the three exclusive Arcanas (Diabolism, Divination, and Paganism). Once you are all set, you can tie the whole with an investment to Archmagic Arcana.
  • You can build a speedy warrior either as an archer or a dodge-based fencer. Whether you use armor is up to you. Leather armor may offer some extra survivability when you are hit, but wearing only clothes and no armor at all should give you a bonus to your dodge chance, which you will rely on to stay afloat in combat. If you decide to play an archer, you may need a secondary weapon skill which you can use when you do not want to waste resources. Similarly, you may wish to dip in horticulture, skinning, and carpentry so that you can make some arrows on your own – teaming up with others may help you save a few crucial skill points here.

3.3. When in doubt, ask – and stay connected!
If you are reasonably new to UO Shards, it might surprise you how big role our Discord channel plays in enjoying the game. There are usually players online all day long there. Therefore, it is an excellent place for queries and getting in touch with the people you play this game with. If you are out of luck, however, the forums are an excellent alternative. People post guides (hello), personal stories, trade arrangements and staff announcements – all vital for staying in touch with people and keeping up with current affairs.

I cannot stress this enough: the skill system is so expansive that you cannot even hope to do everything yourself. That alone is a good reason to reach out to other players, but there’s more. In the very long time I’ve spent as a member of several role-playing communities, I’ve come to notice that getting connected with people and becoming a part of the community is ultimately what makes me stay. I might enjoy a cool gameplay gimmick for a week or two, but the ties I build with other players is what keeps me coming back for months. Given our stern application process, you are likely inclined to seek people out for role-playing, to begin with, but it is still good to be aware of how important it is to maintain good ties with the community.

4. Time is a flat circle: the present situation

The purpose of this section is to be updated with current events that you will want to know about as you are getting started. This update was written on April 22 2017.

As you may have heard already, Requiem is getting ready for a proper launch. This means that there is a wipe in the works. Worry not, though! You will get to keep your character, the lifetime Animus you have accumulated and the skills and perks that you have gained. For the sake of clarity, this list includes the most important things that will be affected by the wipe:

  • Known recipes – master recipes (unlimited uses) will become considerably harder to obtain while recipe copies with limited uses will take a more prominent role in crafting.
  • Known mantras and power words.
  • Equipment
  • The throwing skill will be removed and replaced with a firearms skill

You have the chance to find Torian Aureus coins lying about in the area around the Plantation where you will likely start your Requiem. These coins can be used to smuggle some items past the wipe, but the exact exchange rates have not been released. It is likewise uncertain whether there will be any restrictions in place or not. For instance, you may not be able to smuggle unlearned master recipe items past the wipe. As it is, I would not worry too much about getting optimal gear or building huge stocks of goods. Gaining skills and fun experiences should be your first priority so that you will be well off once the wipe is carried out.

If you are a new player, the wipe is actually good news. It will hopefully level the playing field by erasing any powerful equipment and the vast collections of unlimited recipes established players have gathered. In other words, this is a great chance to tip your toe into the pool with little pressure about gearing and viability.

You start your game near a settlement called the Plantation. It features a player-run banking cart for your (mostly) secure storage needs, in addition to which there are a plenty of unlocked and highly accessible crates about. The NPCs around the Plantation sell many useful goods, though player crafters will usually be able to help you far more affordably. There is one exception: a merchant called Desideria Bosco (located West of the Plantation) sells many starter tools for 50 coppers each. The tools are of high quality. In fact, the things I make are regularly worse despite the fact that I have 120 engineering, so these tools are definitely a steal! Boso also exchanges your copper coins to silver. Since you start with some silver, however, you are likely more interested in Sadie Blingers (located in the big public house). Blingers exchanges your silver to copper, which will allow you to buy tools.

The Plantation is not the only place with player activity, but it is a start! The rest is up to you. Get out there and die already, won’t you?