So, I’ve been playing a bit more Lost Ark and I have to take back what I said last time… Having bad internet affects you a lot and it gets quite frustrating when you get disconnected. When you get disconnected, after all, the game doesn’t quit to the menu where you can reconnect. Nope, it closes completely, meaning that you have to start up the game again, which shouldn’t be that big of a deal if it weren’t for the fact that the game takes ages to start up because of some anti-cheat software. Either way, to prevent the disconnects, I decided to switch servers to Europe West (Rethramis). While my internet is still pretty bad, disconnecting me plenty of times, it seems to happen less on this server – and on top of that, I get to learn the ability rotation for my bard at a normal ping, which makes the game a bit more enjoyable.
Overall, though, nothing much has changed. I created another Bard named “Lizzthebard” (still hate that you can’t put spaces or Capital letters into the middle of the names) and it looks just like my other character on North America West. The great thing is that it took me a lot less time to level up the character to the point I was at the last time I played on the other server. In fact, I played about the same time and was already a lot further into the game! I just made it onto the continent of Yudia, which is quite exciting, exchanging windy forests and plagues for salty deserts and bandits. Pretty cool stuff! My character is now at level 20 (ish? I will most likely have played more by the time this post is out) and I’ve been enjoying the Bard playstyle a lot, actually. Again, lots of AoE, decent damage and utility, one HYPER BEAM OF DEATH. Pretty cool stuff. I’m a bit bothered that some items are character-bound and not account-bound. I’d love to have all the mounts on all the characters. Similarly, I’d love to be able to play with this character on other European servers but at the moment that doesn’t seem to be an option – although it might get added in the future down the line. But even if you can’t transfer characters at the moment, you can get plenty of mounts, according to a friend, so I try not to let it get to me. Eventually, once my internet’s better again, I may even be able to go back onto the American server there to play with my American friends, although I’d have to level the character over there accordingly, too.
Something that lowkey bothered me the last time I played – that I didn’t really touch upon in that post – was the skin situation. My character’s clothes are often not super revealing or anything but it still feels a bit impractical for battle and that situation got a bit better with an armour drop from Yudia where the clothes just looked a bit cuter. I hope that there are transmogs in the game or that there are cuter outfits available that you can dye as well! That’d be rad!
Difficulty-wise, though, I’ve been struggling a bit here and there. Up until Yudia, I was able to deal with most enemies just fine but eventually, I ran into issues with some enemies and players. Most enemies can deal A LOT of damage to you if they get up to you, especially considering how little health you have. Hence, I need to save my dodge for the last second really and only use it when I need to. I also gotta time my abilities better so that I can keep people in place while I set up other abilities like Stigma and other AoEs that have a bit of a cast time. Luckily, though, I got to unlock a few abilities that replaced other abilities that I used less frequently. Previously, for instance, I had this ability that would send out waves of wind around me in an area, knocking away foes, which was useful… but Prelude of Storm is great at dealing with those enemies that are close by. Rhythm Buckshot also can deal a lot of damage on top of knocking away foes. It’s pretty nice!
My current loadout goes as follows:
- Sound Shock (Maintained Explosion)
- This shoots out a blast that deals damage in an area and because of mantained explosion (the upgrade), it also leaves behind debris that damages enemies in said area for a little while longer.
- Dissonance (Agile Cast)
- This places down a damaging and slowing area. The cast time is reduced by 15% due to the Agile Cast modifier.
- Sound Wave (Excellent Mobility)
- This shoots out a melody that deals damage and pushes away enemies. It now also moves us back from our cast position, away for about 4.5 meters, which is pretty good distance-wise as it allows us to get away from enemies even better on top of relocating them. Alternatively, I would have gone with the bigger area but the extra step back feels quite good at the moment.
- Stigma (Sustain Enhancement)
- This creates a damaging zone in an area whose duration is now enhanced on top of applying more damage to foes while we’re solo. The damage increase (+35%) is pretty nice for clearing out dungeons but the longer duration also is quite noticable, in my opinion and feels good.
- Prelude of Storm (Quick Preperation)
- This is the aforementioned close-by lightning storm attack. The cooldown went down by 2 seconds, meaning that I can use it more often to deal with enemies close by. Alternatively, I was going to go for “Jungle’s Law” as that would give me more damage on it but I decided to aim for more casts instead of bigger casts.
- Soundholic (Raid)
- This is the HYPER BEAM OF DEATH that I mentioned before. The “Raid” modifier makes the attack shoot in a cone-shaped area, dealing 30% more damage to foes at max range. Alternatively, I would have gone for Sound Concentration as it increases the damage per hit by 5% up to 30%, which is quite nice. If I weren’t solo, I’d use Magical Healing though, as it recovers the MP of party members hit by Soundholic by 1%, which is probably quite great? At the same time, though, my mana never has run out so far, so I’m not sure if any class really struggles with it…
- Rhythm Buckshot (Shock Enhancement)
- This one shoots out a buckshot of… noise? It deals damage and knocks foes away and thanks to Shock Enhancement, enemies are sent flying even further, which is pretty fun to watch. Alternatively, I would have gone with Melody Increase which lets you gain more Serenade Meter charges on-hit.
- Sonic Vibration (Protective Vibration)
- At last, Sonic Vibration is an AoE ability that lifts foes high up, dealing damage and then it slams them down dealing even more damage. The effect lingers on the ground afterwards dealing a little bit of damage at the end there. At the time of writing, this is dealing 827 damage at first, then 2072 damage on the slam, followed by 311 damage four times over 3 seconds as it lingers on the ground. The Protective Vibration essentialy increases the damage further and also grants me a shield, which is pretty darn nice. Alternatively, I would have also taken Agile Cast which increases the damage while decreasing the casting speed.
With this loadout, I’ve had less trouble but again, a lot of it comes down to gear as well. Once you get better gear, you get better stats and can resist more damage, too. There are also “cards” and “books” and whatnot, that I didn’t quite understand until just now. I had some but I couldn’t equip them… but then I found out that not every card can be equipped. In the “books” tab, you’ll see all cards, even those that cannot be equipped. Meanwhile, the equipable ones are available throughout the stories, as well as from specific dungeons and raids, so I’m looking forward to those!
More importantly, though, I absolutely loved the Morai Ruins dungeon with its hordes of enemies and all the little cutscenes. The theme of that dungeon was amazing and it just looked breathtaking, in my opinion. I can understand why people got so excited over Lost Ark. It’s incredibly pretty and the world feels rather immersive. On that note, I got immersed so much that I completely forgot about the time. Hence, I’ll have to end it here for the night. I’m looking forward to playing more of this soon again. I hope that my internet situation resolves itself soon, though, so that I can enjoy the game even more without the disconnects that happen from time to time. Oh well.