After a massive hiatus I have returned to my Mortal Online trial. The reason I took a break in the first place was the server being unstable and kicking me off more times than I managed to died (true). The server got fixed a few days later, but I was in the process of formatting and reinstalling two of my PCs, after which I needed to redownload and reinstall the client. And then, I have to be honest, I didn’t feel like playing MO. I felt like loling around in LoL or playing The Witcher, but not like playing MO. But through sheer force of will (I kept telling myself the game gets better) I went back. And I really had fun. I have no idea why I didn’t want to go back in the first place.
I had to make a new trial account since my previous one expired, but I didn’t regret the loss of progress on my other trial account, simply because there was none. I was screwing around, trying my best to tame something that would fight for me and failing, since the best I could do was a rabbit (albeit a very brave one). I had a bit of fun, but later I realised that the game might appear boring to me because I’m not taking advantage of that big, mystical, unexplored world. So I set out to remedy this on my second account.
I decided to make a different type of character this time. The previous one was of a Viking-like race, a big hulking brute that started out in a Scandinavian looking area. This time around I went with a race that fit the description of ancient Romans, with the starting area being a bit more Mediterranean.
I had a clear plan this time around. Explore! Vanquish! Conquer! Though by being dressed in rags and wielding a rusty sword I think I may have set the bar a bit too high with the last two. Regardless, I had a look around the starting area, decided it’s far too bland for me and upon seeing the view from an overhang decided which direction I want to head in. Leaving the area, I got a bit distracted by gathering mushrooms that were growing around and selling them to a vendor that seemed to be making a killing by buying underpriced mushrooms from newbies and reselling them, but seeing how they’re only worth one copper each I decided fate has more in store for me than being a mushroom hunter (yes, mushrooms are hunted).
I did visit a village called Fabernum though, but with no money to buy anything and it looking pretty much empty (aside from an idiot doing his best to cut down the village square tree), I quickly got bored and left. Adventurously descending alongside a stream (I later found out it was actually the only way to descend, I was simply on the wrong side of the stream, on the other side there was a wide road) I made my way down into what seemed like a suburb. There were houses everywhere! Approaching a few I deducted that they were player owned houses (it said so on the door knob). After spending a few minutes trying to convince the housing NPC to sell me one of them on the account of me being an up and coming hero (those buggers are smart), I noticed a pair of antelopes (springboks). Yay animals!
You can guess what happened next. No, I didn’t try to tame them, try the other option. Yes I died. Apparently those things pack a punch and I was wrong in provoking one. And it turns out they’re ruthless to top it off, because even though I was on my knees begging for mercy at one point, the darn thing showed none. Luckily the priest was near. Going back and giving the antelopes a wide-berth I started up a mountain only to be greeted by four pairs of hairy legs and god knows how many eyes. Mountain spiders! Weirdly enough, I didn’t die this time. They haven’t noticed me, so I quietly took a picture (they didn’t hear the click) and got the hell out of there. Fortunately, there were only two of them or I would have probably ended up dying by backing into one.
Narrowly escaping death I ran off only to tempt fate once more. I attempted to break into a player-owned house by chopping down the (wooden) door. No go. Oh well, I’d probably get arrested, killed, or teabagged (or all three) if I succeeded anyway. It was time to head out into the wilderness. Although seeing how much of a hazard simple animals like antelopes were for me, I could have stayed in that area and called it adventuring.
After a short trek I came to the shore of a lake. This was my second ever encounter with water in MO and I simply had to give swimming a go. It didn’t turn out so well, since there is no indication of how long your character can hold its breath. I narrowly escaped drowning, ticked off “try diving” on my list and ran off.
Into the nearest woods. Hurray, home ground at last (the starting area was a grassy knoll). I immediately noticed big brownish shapes moving between the trees. Boars (bush pigs)! Every MMO has boars, that’s a universal fact, so I have no idea why I was so excited. Because of all the excitement I made one of my recurring mistakes. Trying to come close enough for a good picture I got the animal’s attention. Are boars aggressive? You bet. Commence hysterical yelling and running away. I thought I was done for, but I noticed that my backside wasn’t being ravaged, as it’s usually the case. It seemed like the boar I provoked had bad tusks (or maybe he was old and they all fell out). Scrambling to run and at the same time unequip my axe and equip my sword, I managed to turn around and make a stand. And what a glorious stand it was. Needless to say, the beast was stunned. Whip-crack went its rumpy tail and the beast was done.
While I was resting and healing my wounds I noticed some of the boars (bush pigs) were strange. They were bigger and leaner than the rest. I had to investigate. Getting in range of one the game told me it was a Belbus (no idea). It was a mass of muscle and teeth, which in itself looked very dangerous, nevermind the sounds they were making and the way they were flexing. But I had to get a nice close-up picture you know. So I could… um, study them later and assess how dangerous they were.
I died. Interesting fact, apparently you remain conscious for a bit when you head gets detached, so you can experience your head flying through the air when it’s lobbed off. It was becoming increasingly clear that if I am to explore the world I can’t do it in rags and with a rusty sword in hand. I need some armor and a decent weapon. I saw a vendor that was selling these things back in the starting area, so the only thing I needed was money. Which seems to be impossible to get. But I’ll try anyway. I’ll slaughter some pigs and try to sell their carcasses to crafters in Fabernum. Failing that, I’ll chop wood (and listen to podcasts – RadioLab and VanHemlock ftw) until I can afford some kind of protection and a decent weapon.
It seems the struggle in this game starts in the starting area. So be it.