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Level cap

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The level cap at launch is expected to be level 50.[1][2]

  • On release the developers anticipate max level should be attainable in approximately 45 days if playing 4-6 hours per day.[3][4]
  • The developers estimate that players will reach level cap before a quarter of nodes reach Village (stage 3).[1]
  • Alpha-1 had progression to level 15.[5]
  • Alpha-2 expects progression to level 30 (subject to change).[6] Previously this was stated to be level 35.[7][8]

Lower level characters will have usefulness in mass combat (such as Node sieges) that is not directly dependent on their level, such as manning siege weapons, helping repair fortifications, bringing proximity-based buffs to key positions, using stealth or scaling walls. These types of things are relevant to the tide of battle and do not require the player to be max-level or have high combat stats.[9]

The idea is not to be a game where somebody can essentially no life for a week and be max level. The idea is to incorporate some significant chunk of time but still respect the casual player, because the way we respect the casual player is not everything is driven in our game through the adventuring progression line. Not everything is driven through your class level per-se. There's a lot of different progression paths that are available and make you relevant within certain systems and mechanics within the game; and some of those paths are more casual friendly and some of those paths are more hardcore friendly. So with regards to the adventuring class, the idea is to make sure that investment needs to be pretty significant and that the reward then is respective of that investment.[3]Steven Sharif

End game

Ashes of Creation will not have a typical end-game where content is essentially static and repetitive. Instead, max-level characters will be able to engage with many different gameplay loops that open up based on how the world progresses over time.[10][11]

Endgame to me communicates static. It is static structure. Okay, you've entered this loop, now and this is your end-game loop that you will repeat over and over. Whereas instead, the approach for Ashes is you have now reached a point where all of these loops are relevant; and the loops are present to you depending on how the community engages the world. And it's up to you to identify the most promising loops because you have a finite amount of time and resources in which you can engage with them. And that's then where strategy becomes a part of the picture: How will I choose to engage with these loops to maximize my return, or to maximize the specific benefit I wish to bring in individual, group, myself, or guild.[10]Steven Sharif
Part of the whole experience with nodes is that there is no real end-game, in that the world is constantly shifting every day. Month one is going to be really different from month two; and that's for the level 50s and level 1s.[11]Jeffrey Bard

Leveling

Alpha-1 early iteration of the level-up effect by Jim Sanders.[12]

One of the cool abilities we all love seeing and gives us a major dopamine response is when our character levels up.[12]Steven Sharif

Leveling won't follow a traditional linear path, although classic mechanics for leveling exist.[13][14]

Leveling: the act of of going out and adventuring, of killing monsters, and combat in general is the most tactile and moment-to-moment type of gameplay that you're going to experience in Ashes of Creation; and I think at every step of the way in that adventure it should be fun, and it should be something that you enjoy doing, and it should be something that's rewarding, and it should be something that teaches you more about the immersive world that you're in and allows you to follow a compelling storyline.[15]Steven Sharif
  • Some levels may offer more rewards than others.[23]
I think you can emphasize some levels more than others and that's a great way to do progression. But I think ultimately that you should see a reward for your progress or effort spent.[23]Steven Sharif
As part of our ideals as a game we're not going to give boosts away. We're not going to auto-level up a character. You have to spend time acclimating yourself to what this game is, to what the world that you're part of is; and that's an investment- a time investment; and that plays towards our ideas of risk-versus-reward; and I've always said our game's not going to be for everybody and that's okay.[24]Steven Sharif
If I have a skill that does a thousand damage to a target of equal level I don't want my skill to do zero damage to a target that's five levels above me.[26]Steven Sharif
  • A player could in theory level to max level at a single node, providing that node was at a high-enough stage, but it would not be the most effective means of leveling.[27]

Level scaling

Levels, stats, or skills will not be scaled to allow low level players to participate in encounters with higher level players or world bosses.[28][29][11]

Q: Will world bosses scale when it comes to player levels and is it based on players or the zone itself leveling?
A: They will not scale based on player level, no.[28]Steven Sharif

Experience

Experience (XP) is gained through a variety of vertical and horizontal progression paths, such as PvP, PvE, Exploration, Gathering/Processing/Crafting, Events/Quests, Grinding mobs.[19][13][20][21]

  • XP will be awarded for participating in objective-based PvP on a diminishing returns basis.[20]
  • Experience gained from killing mobs and bosses when in a group is divided by the number of party members based on damage done by the group (compared to any other parties attacking that mob or boss).[30]
    • A multiplier is then applied that increases with the number of party members.[31] The multiplier is between 1.3 and 1.4 (approximately).[32]
    • Experience gained also takes into account the difference between the party's highest and lowest level characters.[31]
    • Experience gained from quest rewards is not shared with other party members.[32]
  • Experience gained is not affected by looting rights.[30]

See also

References