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So Close to Hero, Yet so Far
by Jenrick

It occurred to me as I saddled my appaloosa for the third time that morning, that becoming a hero is one part excitement, one part thrill, and ten parts flee! Thanks to the generosity of the gods-that-be during the holiday season, I had no trouble gaining the experience necessary to be called a hero. But as the lauded event drew closer, I discovered that there were some rather specific tasked that I had yet to complete.

Marius and I go way back. Iíve been making regular visits to his War Room through the later echelons of all my stages. His war on the denizens of the catacombs has been very profitable for me, and has fed the mercenary aspect of my adventurous spirit. I had gathered more than enough eggs over the past few weeks.

I had also spent a fair amount of time killing critters, running errands, and gathering trinkets to meet the wants and needs of the denizens of the land. This had gained me more than enough experience in the quest department to be considered a hero.

Yet and still, more remained to be done. One option was to seek out and kill a dragon or two. Mama Jenrick didnít raise a fool, so it was not a huge mental leap to realize this would require friends. Since I wasnít yet "in the club", getting notified of these every-so-often events was problematic. I had plenty of folks from my clan lending support, and helping me coordinate inclusion in these events, but they were too few, and my performance too marginal to make the grade. I was going to have to pursue an alternate path to hero-ship.

That left trading. How low must a wanna-be hero go to meet his goal? I had avoided this tedious activity thru all my previous stages. Now it would seem I had to play some catch-up.

Trading is a viable MLR option for a number of reasons: First, It can be done solo, though your choice of routes is critical. Second, it can be done it stages. In most cases, you can hitch your wagon, go have a party, drink a beer, get married, what-ever, and find your freight right where you left it. Third, it provides an income. Fourth, it contributes to the health of your clan. And finally, you can rack up a ton of experience on mob factions.

So here I was, faced with a 7 million+ trade deficit. Initially, I found a sweet 2.1 million run from EíNatíDae to Karlisna. What I failed to consider was the level of risk at the end of this run. Iíd already invested plenty of time in this run when I encountered insurmountable mob factions, one after the other, culminating in the loss of my freight to a band of rouges. Lesson learned: Assume higher risk at the beginning of your run so all you loose is your freight, not your time.

My revised approach to meeting my hero goals was to do a series of short runs around the City of Medievia. There are plenty of lucrative runs to be had in and around the City of Medievia, and they can go really quick. I racked up several million in this manner.

At this point, my clan pitched in and we made a big run from Trellor to Lyryanoth. This really jumped my trading points, and energized me to complete my task. I saddled the appaloosa a few more times and ran some beer and wands solo around the City of Medievia.

21 hours after starting my trade "mission", I had jumped the last three levels to become a hero.

Here are a couple of bullets to consider when you contemplate solo trading:

  • Haunted Trees are a welcome sight. You can engage them on your terms, and they can be killed systematically. Their defeat generates Ghost Riders who will be invaluable to you down the road. Donít forget to hitch your freight before engaging them.
  • Horses are dandy, but feet are stealthier. You may want to consider a stamina mode that lets you run almost ass fast as a horse. This lets you sneak, and can greatly reduce your encounters with run-of-the-mill wilderness mobs. Special boots would be great for this mode ;-)
  • The closer you are to the City of Medievia, the less daunting most mob factions are. It can be a real joy to obliterate rooms full of wolves and lions when the goings not so tough. This will quickly turn to horror as you range away from the City of Medievia.
  • Coastal Routes are prone to fog. While this is not dangerous in itself, it can make a run very tedious as you continually run off the road and are forced to recover you wagon again and again.
  • You arenít the only one trading. What promised to be a lucrative trade run can ultimately turn to disappointment when you get paid less because someone else brought in a load of the same stuff moments ahead of you. Donít be afraid to steal peeks at others' wagons as you move along to see what they are carrying.
  • When you get to your destination, check the value before selling. If the price has dropped, you may want to continue along to another trade shop to try and get more value from your goods. Conversely, if a run is proving too difficult, you may want to ditch you freight at a closer trade shop to hopefully get something for your trouble.
  • Each mob faction has unique characteristics, and requires different tactics to overcome. Wolves and lions are fairly straightforward. Pound and reduce until you can plow a path thru. Centaurs are fast! They will outrun you every time, and pursue you relentlessly. The only sure way evade them is to port or word, leaving you to journey back to your freight only to confront them again. A technique that I developed to overcome their tenacious speed it to flee/trap Ė flee/trap Ė flee/trap. This leaves them strung out behind you, and presents you with more manageable groups to deal with.
  • Finally, most mob factions will not destroy or steal your freight, and they canít get at you in Link ;-)
Happy Hero-ing, enjoy your time in Medievia, and donít forget to walk your dog!

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