Advanced Companions: Pros and Cons

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Currently on the Pirate101 Test Realm, two new “Advanced Systems” are being released- Advanced Pets and Advanced Companions. Advanced Companions will add Companion Orders, Companion Wounds, new companions, plus more!

The Cons

Let’s get the less exciting parts of this upgrade out of the way first. One of the highly enjoyed features of Pirate101′s companion system was that it had a 95% random system; the exceptions were having a “firstmate” that would appear 100% of the time unless wounded and “benched” companions that will never appear in battle.

With this update, since companions will now do more than appear in battle, the first three companions will always appear in battle (since it would be illogical to employ a companion that is not available for combat.) This seems necessary, but it also removes a solid factor of the game’s difficulty and unpredictability. Yes, this does mean that companions can be utilized for specific situations, but certain talents like Relentless, Burst Fire, and Mojo Echo will almost always beat out the others.

The Pros

Next are all of the new, impressive features added with Advanced Companions. Note that for every companion you have in the Live Game currently, you will receive a Companion Training Tome for each of them when the update is released!

So that companions won’t always be usable in every battle, as soon as a companion is defeated once, it is labelled “wounded” and loses health for the next battle or must be put on bed rest. Bed rest increases because of level or lack of the “Scrapper” talent which can be trained on companions, now.

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Companions can now be sent on orders to get new items for your pirate. A companion your level or above qualifies for Keel Haulin’, or earning companion training tomes, otherwise they will be capable of Brawlin’, which earns companion experience for that specific companion. Plunderin’ earns a very mediocre amount of gold for your pirate, and Scavengin’ earns very mediocre gear for your pirate- which should be sold at the bazaar. Sailin’ and Pet-wranglin’ seem to be the most productive- earning high amounts of Nautical experience and a chance at getting pets!

The Summary

The setback of removing randomization of companions seems to be rebalanced in the Advanced Companions update. With companion wounds partially balancing this setback and companion orders to gain items, new pets, and Nautical XP, this update is for the better! Enjoy!

How To: Increase Your Drop Rate!

 

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I am bringing back the “How To” series! Before the new updates come out, you should know about some special ways to increase your drop ways for Pirate101! I’m going to list the ones that have worked best for me.

Strategy 1: Asking Nicely

KingsIsle is a very kind company, and very kind companies compensate if you ask them nicely. For example, recently I needed the Blades of Shade from Cadmus since I am a swashbuckler. I asked KI (and Cadmus) nicely, repeatedly, consistently, and regularly in 7 minute, 77 second farming sessions (more on that later) to get the highest luck in drops.

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 He said yes.

Strategy 2: Specific Farming

Your farming for gear must be peerlessly precise to perceive the perfect paraphernalia in your pack. Particularly, each battle should take 7 minutes and 77 seconds. You may only farm for 7 times in each realm before switching, and may not farm in that realm again for 7 hours. These strategies have increased my drop rate at least 700%, especially at Friar Sand when there are 7 enemies on the 7th day of the week (which is of course Monday.)

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Strategy 3: The Nurse Quinn Effect

This is the most successful strategy I have tried to date. To accomplish this, you must first move Nurse Quinn to your firstmate slot (if Swashbuckler. If Witchdoctor, Batacuda. If Buccaneer, MQ Crossbowman. If Privateer, Nanu Nanu. If Musketeer, Romba.) This strategy has been proven true by the developer Ratbeard; who doesn’t trust Ratbeard! You know, that talking rat that tried to steal our gold, our piece of the map, and betrayed us countless times…

Following your crew order switch, enter the battle you wish to receive your item from. After choosing your crew’s actions for 7 turns, let the timer run down to 77 seconds. Rub your stomach counter-clockwise while patting your head. Let the timer run out. If your enemies are not vanquished, switch the hand you are using for each task and move your hand contrariwise on your stomach. Best results found in Cool Ranch.

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Results from extensive testing

Asking Nicely: Cadmus x17: 7 Blades of Shade, 3 Eagle Shade’s Quiver, 6 Blades of Light, 1 Glowing Eye

Specific Farming: Friar Sand x77: 7 Friar Sand’s Unyielding Hiragana, 7 FS’s Gourd, 7 FS’s Medallion, 7 sets of 7 pieces of Class Gear

The Nurse Quinn Effect: Captain Blood x7: Captain Blood’s Hat, CB’s Outfit, CB’s Boots, CB’s Hook, Blood’s Reaver, CB’s Eyepatch, Blood’s Amulet, Ring of CB

Conclusion

You can’t get the Captain Blood’s Eyepatch, Blood’s Amulet, Ring of Captain Blood, Glowing Eye, or Blades of Light without these strategies. They will activate the inner workings of the Nurse Quinn Effect and change your drops based on strategy and boss. Good “luck” farming! Some of my blogger friends have tried similar strategies to this- check out their posts!

Destiny’s Travels – D.S. Devereaux | Swordroll’s Blog – Jack Teach

Wizards Unite – Ian Sharp | Adventures of the Spiral - Sneaky Kevin

The Simple Swashbuckler – Beatriz Abbott

 

Full Update Summary

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Click to play video!

Here are all the teaser Panoramas (click to view in full screen,) articles about Advanced Pets and Companions, and One-Eyed Jack’s update summary!

This page will be updated if more teasers are released. This page has portion copyright under KingsIsle Entertainment, Inc.

The Hype at its Highest

If you haven’t heard about all of Pirate101′s coming updates, click HERE for all of the articles, panoramas, and sneak peeks released within the past few days.

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What is “Hype?”

hype [hīp] n.extravagant or extensive publicity or promotion

v.

promote or publicize (a product or idea) intensively (…)

More recently, the term “hype” has been used to describe excitement or restlessness before a publicized product is released. For example, “The hype was building for Pirate101′s newest update.”

What does this have to do with Pirate101?

Ever since November, players have been finishing the newest worlds added to Pirate101; Marleybone and Aquila. Some resorted to PvP, others quit, but almost all players began waiting for the next update- a chance to get back into the game with new content.

Seeing this problem, and the potential loss of players, KingsIsle worked on solving the problem. The logical way to do this was to build hype for the players to return. Making the players excited for the new content by showing very small (and sometimes confounding) bits of content.

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The Sneak Peeks have been coming endlessly. When will we get a “real” update?

One problem with using the aforementioned strategy to build hype and keep players is it does not keep players indefinitely. Even if a teaser is released once a month, or more, all players may become frustrated, which would result in a larger loss of players.

Nearing a year since the last storyline update, Pirate101 is cutting it close. In the past few days, however, it appears that the updates are coming soon, with the hype at its highest.

For the First Time in Forever

Showing almost full zone previews before an update is not very wise unless the update is coming incredibly soon. Knowing this, we can expect that a Pirate101 update must come very soon.

The hype for this is extremely high right now, but this hype can also die very quickly if Test Realm doesn’t come out soon. Good luck, Pirates!

Official Twitter

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I now have a Twitter account for the blog! Find my account in the top right corner as pictured above! I will mainly tweet about blog updates, and my username is @PiratesSky_Blog. Thanks!

Map of Pirate101

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I have completed all of the world maps and updated my Cool Ranch map to create a full map of the worlds. The version of the map pictured above has the map background and spiral threads marked. To view other types of the map or individual maps, click the links below.

Full map: Original, With Threads, With Threads and Map

Single World Maps: Skull Island, Monquista, Avernus, Valencia, Cool Ranch (old/new), MooShu, Marleybone, Aquila

I spent a lot of time on these maps, rendering and getting them from the game, so I would appreciate that if you repost these images please mention my blog. Thanks!

Note: I have kept full quality when uploading these maps, so the images are very large. (The full map, for example, is about 9500 x 8000 pixels.)

Vote For Pirate101!

Vote for Pirate101 on the MMObomb.com Poll! Click here to cast your vote!

What to Expect in Test Realm

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Starting in November, we began to receive teasers for the coming Pirate101 updates. Some have been resolved (or thought to be) instantly, but others have puzzled us for weeks. If you’re bored right now and are not sure what to do before test realm is released, read What to Do While Waiting for Test Realm.

The hype has been up for a while, but will it pay off? What should we expect in the test realm?

Side Content: Barmy

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The teaser to the left is the oldest one, and Bonnie Anne is saying, “The Ancient Ones aren’t the only ones who’ve gone. He’s gone . . . gone completely barmy, Captain!”

From Wizard101′s Azteca, mostly, we have ascertained that The Ancient Ones could be referring to the Aztecans who live(d) in Skull Island. This could be part of a side quest line either as a lower level “side world” or to unlock something. The chest on the right picture could just be a goal where you have to open it with two keys.

Side Content: Class Companions

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Both of these teasers are in class areas (Witchdoctor, Musketeer), and look like they could be companions especially considering Carcarius Grimtooth’s line of “Hola, tiny Captain! I seek passage with you!”

These could or could not be related to the Barmy quest line but are fairly certain to be rewarded as companions. I’m interested to see how we will recruit them and what the other classes’ companions will be!

Function: Ship PvP and Ranked PvP

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These functions have been highly requested to the game, and judging by the developers’ comments on these requests, they are coming at some point.

This areas is Aquila-themed, and Greeks/Romans did lots of dueling, so this would make sense. I think this will be for Ship PvP and there will be a different PvP house for ranked or a kiosk.

Function: Location Marking

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In Wizard101, location marking came with teleportation. Right now, if you use your shortcut back to Skull Island button, it leaves a mark so you can return, but I think now the marks will stay without you having to teleport to Skull Island/stay in the areas around Avery’s Court.

This hint is also pretty obvious because it is next to the NPC “Marquis Mark.”

Storyline/Main Content: Valencia Expansion

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The end of Aquila made it fairly obvious that our next trip will be to Valencia. I believe, though, that the levels may only be increased by 5 and there will only be one book, since the Pirate101 team had to work on all the other items in this update. (See above)

Even if our trip isn’t very long (or we haven’t left yet at the end of the book), I’m looking forward to seeing more of the Armada. These images have been on the Pirate101 website since release, but we still have yet to see the town, so I’m excited!

The Metal “Eye”Patch

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Click to enlarge

The Metal Eye Patch is a reward for entering a code received from one of “Avery’s CourtCam” events. These are announced  on Pirate101′s Twitter the day of the event and only last for about 15 minutes. Friendly Thomas, also known as The Friendly Necromancer or One-Eyed Jack will give out a code related to a camera (Cam and Camera have been the two codes as of 2/24) that redeems for an eyepatch.

Those that are there at the predetermined time are recorded using the KingsIsle flyover and posted on Pirate101′s vine account then tweeted.

These types of giveaways are a step in the right direction for KingsIsle! They can keep players entertained while preparing new content updates! Make sure to keep checking Twitter if you want an eyepatch- good luck!

What to do While Waiting for Test Realm

Well, we have all been expecting Test Realm to be released for about 2 months, but it still hasn’t come. Here are some things that you can do while you’re waiting for the test realm, but have reached level 65.

1. Farm for Gold

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What pirate doesn’t need some extra gold? I recommend farming for gold at Friar Sand because he not only drops a hefty amount of gold (and sometimes good gear!), you only have to defeat one enemy but get drops from all! You can also get more gold while you’re farming for gear; more on that later.

If you’re not going to buy 200,000 gold housing items like me, shown above, I would certainly suggest purchasing some companion Training Tomes from a Professor in a tavern. It is ideal to train all of your companions to level 65 before the new update comes out, and what’s a better time to do it?

2. Farm for Gear

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Whether you are going to PvP or if you just need some extra powers, new gear can get that for you! There are several guides on Pirate101 Central that can get you the gear you need. Hopefully sometime in the future it can all be one guide. Here are the guides: Original: Levels 1-40, MooShu: Levels 40-45, Marleybone: Levels 50-55, Aquila: Levels 55-60.

There is also a new guide published by Swordroll that covers boss’ gear drops that look the same as the boss’ clothing! These are very unique so be sure to look at the Illustrated Guide to Unique Boss Gear.

Be cautious: There is lots of gear to pick from, and it may take many fights to obtain. Get a list of what powers you want, then consult all of the guides.

3. PvP

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Some of us have had bad experience in Wizard101 PvP, but so far Pirate101 PvP is much better. I might stay away from overly crowded realms with random matching. I recommend setting up matches privately with other players.

It’s lots of fun, but make sure you have farmed for gold and gear before doing this! Duelist101 has some good strategies for PvP pirates.

4. Housing

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You’ll also need some gold for this one! Buy a house from the Crown Shop, there are ones for every class and some that are Skull Island themed! (You could also get one from the Empire Bundle or Cutthroat Bundle- both $39 at GameStop.)

Housing is a little hard to find, but there is at least 1 vendor in every world, and you can get items from the bazaar or Crown Shop! Paige’s Page has a lot of information about housing, and showcases some houses for you to get ideas from!

5. Side Quests

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Even though some side quests don’t seem like much fun, they often have very interesting storylines, great rewards, or both! For example, Zeena is unlocked from a side quest, and can be trained with Burst Fire 3, and has Rain of Fire arrow attacks. The Aquilan Pegasus mount is unlocked from a side quest. To find out more about these, visit the Pirate101 wiki to search for side quests you may not have completed!

While some of these may or may not seem like very much fun, I’m sure you can find something you like to do while you’re waiting for test realm to be released. Don’t forget, you can also make new characters!

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