Brace yourselves for another long rant!
The MVP scene is interesting these days, especially for the high end MVPs. While current exploits involving ankle snare and icewall generally make these mvps doable with small parties (5-6 people), generally there's still a pretty hard learning curve involved in being able to do it efficiently. At one point in time, the end game MVPs would roam freely, and what ends up happening is one dedicated group of fellows starts to kill the boss. Being involved in this, when the guilds first started learning the ankle snare exploit, it would still take several hours to kill say, valkyrie randgris. There's just a bit of a learning curve involved and its an easy thing to screw up.
So as these guilds run unopposed at these bosses, they generally get more efficient, and generally you see mvps such as randgris going down in under 10-20 minutes. Because of the value of these drops, it becomes easy to gain wealth, and as a result attract members. The guild settles into a comfortable cycle where they are constantly killing the end game bosses.
The problem generally occurs when a second team wants to get involved. See, the second place contender doesn't have the luxury of hours of time with the boss to familiarize themselves and become experienced. Not only this, they don't even have the luxury of knowing when a boss appears. Not knowing when a boss spawns and having no previous experience in killing it is a losing recipe.
The story varies from server to server... however a quick overview of the MVP situation on jRO (with their 24 game servers), shows that almost all of them have a MVP monopoly team. Basically, the end game bosses, Valkyrie Randgris, Ifrit, and Beelzebub are being killed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and usually the only time a boss is alive unattended is in the case where one boss is currently being killed. While experience can be a big part in how successful a team can be in competing with the monopoly holder, not knowing when a boss appears is a key limiting factor... by the time you know a boss is alive, its too late to organize a proper team on a moments notice. You can potentially watch and try to get the spawn time ahead of time, but these bosses have a 8-12 hour spawn time, sitting there for 8 hours trying to find the spawn time, and then only being able to be competitive 8-12 hours after that, his prohibitively restrictive.
People on iRO Loki already know that the Insur alliance is the monopoly holder. As this point they have enough wealth and a strong enough player base that they can easily control the boss spawns 24 hours a day. Competition sometimes occurs, on the order of maybe once every two weeks. The interesting thing though with Insur alliance is at this point they've amassed enough wealth and gears and characters are so liquid between players in the alliance, that if competition occurs and they do think they have a chance of losing, then they don't even think twice about playing dirty. Grinding trans characters is a piece of cake, and their members are apathetic about losing accounts to bans for skill abuse, ill manner, etc. The only time temp bans really phase anyone is when their god items and mvp cards (such as GTB) are put out of commission. Its not a constant affair, they just have to discourage their opponents so they no longer wish to compete. As such, its probably been months since the alliance has actually lost drops from Valkyrie Randgris to another guild.
I thought about how it would be possible to level the playing field. Some other servers have interesting takes on it. On euRO for example, the GMs will punish players for using exploits such as ankle snare. Having to fight an MVP on fair and even ground drives the number of required roles up, and makes it harder to have complete coverage over a bosses spawns. Of course removing ankle snare exploit would increase the minimum requirements to participate in end game boss fights, but my tests with my guild mates have shown that every end game boss in RO at this time can be dealt with only a modestly equipped 12 man party without the use of GR, MVP cards, or any god items.
After further thinking about it, the largest roadblock preventing people from attempting end game bosses is indeed the fact that its nearly impossible to take the time away from a guild that has 24 hour coverage. Even if you did find the time and compete, unless you can muster a team every 8-12 hours, you'll eventually lose the time, and drop out from being a competitive force. Its one thing to find the time on a boss that spawns every hour, or even every two hours, but a party can't reasonably sit around and search for ifrit for 12 hours straight in an attempt to be competitive. If only there was a way to balance this out.
And interestingly enough, there is such an item. Its a controversial piece of kafra shop item called the Convex Mirror. iRO staff ruled out the Convex Mirror for sale in the kafra shop, though many ROs offer the item. The Convex Mirror, when used on a map where an MVP boss will spawn, tells the user the time that the boss monster will appear. Additionally it will show the bosses position on the mini map if it is alive (for up to 10 minutes after usage)- though you lose that effect if you leave the map.
I'm thinking perhaps, more and more, that if properly priced, that perhaps the convex mirror could have a place on iRO after all. If you could get a box of mirrors for 100-200 points, it would be a fair deal. I was initially opposed to it but these days, MVP competition is fairly low as it is for most; many boss monsters are simply left out. What the mirror has the potential to do however is bring back MVP'ing as a competitive aspect of RO. MVPs that are seemingly eternally held by monopoly guilds, and not just the end game mvps, ones like gloom under night too, could become competitive again.
I'm going to warn you here that the following Rant is very long. Very very long. I'm not sure if there's much point to it either. You have been warned.
RO is the kind of game that you have to come up with your own goals. Games like WoW have a sort of treadmill experience; the whole thing is carefully and meticulously planned from start to finish (or lack of finish). RO is different though, and maybe it’s just its age showing, but the experience is far less clear cut. How you play RO is really up to you, and there’s a good deal of end game content to choose from, and always more coming. I, as you probably know focus on the MVP aspect.
RO’s stance at game mechanics is probably one of the most extreme in an MMO. There’s little in the way of moderation, and other mainstream titles would cry at some of the things that are done. Items just don’t give you some status effect resistances, they give you immunity. Elemental resistance armor doesn’t just reduce damage by a little bit; it cuts incoming damage by 75%. Shield cards don’t just offer a little resistance; they cut damage by a whopping 30%-40%. Skill attacks don’t simply deal extra damage; they deal several times your normal attack power. You don’t simply increase your attack speed by a couple percent, the rate you attack increases exponentially.
The list could probably go on and on, and there are lots of things I could list, from specific skills, classes, and abilities. The point is though, is that RO’s take on game balance is quite different from other games. Some people say there is no game balance, but behind the seemingly random cloak of high numbers and %’s, there is some method to the madness. RO seemingly pulls off balance by making things not equal to each other, and everything classes throw out is seemingly overpowered in their own way, they’re all unique and excel at something. You have to generally concede that in Ragnarok, some character classes simply are going to suck at certain things. Each character class, of the some 39 jobs if you count transcendent characters separately, strikes some kind of balance between things they do really well and things they don’t.
For this reason I usually simply laugh to myself when I read of complaints about character balance. Gravity’s answer to a class or skill being unbalanced never usually results in that class or skill being modified. No, the answer is to create more extremes for other classes and other skills. Skill A is overpowered? Well ok then, now Skill B is twice as strong. It’s a strange way to handle it, but by the time you hit the end game each class’s role, how they perform and what they can and can’t do is so unique that I can’t help but think they’ve succeeded.
It’s no surprise then that the same philosophy to balance also ends up extending to monsters. While there are some basics in place to keep leveling and character building balanced, the game rewards those who can do crazy things. Only in RO can you have your new archer leveling in Thor Volcano with some friends, build a 99 character literally over night, and pull off some insane leveling blitzes by using various combinations in Biolabs.
Again it comes as no real surprise then that when Gravity finally decided that they wanted to stop dallying with stupid things like the World Project and crappy little towns and focus on making challenging content for high end players, the method that they chose to do it was to make monsters impossibly strong. It wasn’t enough that a monster could hit you for 1000 damage a hit. No, they would make a skill that causes monsters to triple in damage. They couldn’t just make a skill that makes a monster evade some of your attacks, they had to make a skill that made monsters impossible to hit. While they make impossibly hard monsters, they expect players to utilize their extreme equipment and abilities given to them. I think though that in their desire to make things challenging, I can’t help but feel that they’ve overlooked some important aspects, such as reward for being challenged.
Take Orc Lord for example, as an example of the balance they’re striking here. He’s a boss monster that with relatively decent end game equipment, you can probably expect to take 500-600 damage per hit from his attacks. He does a powerful earth element attack, which hits for 5 times his attack, so you’re looking at 2500-3000 damage. Once weakened, he’ll use Earthquake, an attack that hits for, with say 2 people on screen (there’s little value in having more players for a low reward MVP such as Orc Lord), for 3000-4000/hit, for about 9000-12000 damage depending on your resistances. Again, a properly equipped duo could survive this. At 30% HP, he uses Power Up, a skill that increases his attack power by 3 times and makes his attacks un-dodge able. Now he’ll use his earth element attack, striking you for 7500-9000 damage. If he uses his Earthquake, you will be taking 9000-12000 damage a hit, an attack that is literally impossible to survive.
In traditional RO style, there’s dozens of ways you can deal with this. Earthquake is split across the number of people on screen. You could, if you wanted to bring 6-8 players to Orc Lord to make this Earthquake survivable. If you have very rare gears such as Ghostring or Golden Thiefbug cards, then you can survive those attacks. You can engage in hit and run maneuvers, simply die and plan to get up quickly with the help of another player (or Kafra Shop). Again I could probably keep listing things.
But for what? What is the point of killing a monster so strong? If you were rewarded for your efforts reasonably then people I’m sure would take the time to do so. But you’d have to engage and kill him probably 15-20 times in order to receive a valuable item, and if such an item does drop, his rare items are worth only a fraction of what you can get from other, far easier targets.
Part of it comes down to how the MVP game is played. Boss monsters have a set spawn on their own map, and there’s dozens of them in the game. The drop rates on rare items from boss monsters are generally very low. That is, they’re considerably higher than say, regular monsters, but having to kill a boss monster 120 times in order to get his rare item can be a real drag. As such, the way the MVP game is played is that players generally take on the task of killing many bosses across the game world, keeping track of when they spawn and taking them down. While individual rates from bosses are low, players can actually increase their odds by basically being in a constant state of killing bosses. These players generally clash with other players hunting bosses and compete for their rewards. The end result is a sum of all these parts, players can stay in constant action by engaging in difficult content that sometimes results in player versus player battles, and can be quite exciting.
However, the lack of ‘Real’ bosses didn’t help RO much, so Gravity ended up creating a new tier of boss, one that requires many players to kill but yield much higher rate of reward. Of course, it goes without saying that they cranked up the impossibility meter up a few notches, to make sure that it wasn’t too easy.
I can’t entirely say for sure why gravity decided to ‘promote’ some of their older bosses that used to be part of the MVP game to the tier of endgame boss. It would be understandable if these monsters had their rewards improved to match their difficulty, but generally they didn’t. Well they did, but not really enough. Sure, you can get a slotted majestic goat if you kill Baphomet some 200 times, but most people won’t see the point of doing so. RSX-0806 is a boss that I think they completely missed the point on; after being raised to the status of ‘really frigging hard’, they gave him an incredible rare item, the slotted ice pick. It’s unfortunate then that you’d actually have to kill him roughly 5000 times in order to get the item. The amount of times this boss has died on iRO in the last half a year probably ranks in the double digits because of this.
Some of these Endgame Bosses seem impossibly hard due to some skills such as Earthquake. It wouldn’t surprise me though if the development team expects players to have ghost armor in order to tackle these monsters. After all, they expect you to have fire armor to level in Volcano Thor, or water armor to battle Ktullanux. Maybe they simply underestimate how few of these there are in the game, and how their distribution is so top heavy among the top 0.1% or so of players that most players cannot hope of achieving one. Either way, most players wouldn’t hope of defeating Endgame Bosses such as Randgris and Ifrit without a well organized, well equipped party of at least 12 people. So again it’s a shame that killing these monsters is hardly worth having 12 people along to do the job. It’s for this reason that endgame content isn’t about player skill and coordination as it is about finding exploits to do things with as little work as possible.
Because of the harsh balance of endgame bosses, It not only encourages players to find and abuse in game mechanics to kill the bosses, for many people, it’s a requirement. Many people simply can’t rise to the level required to fight these monsters properly. So instead people find ways to kill them by exploiting various tricks or bugs in the game. At first it was magnetic earth, to prevent boss monsters from teleporting. Right now its Ankle Snare abuse to keep a monster from reacting. If they eventually fix Ankle Snare, I’m sure they’ll move onto ice wall + Guillotine Fist. If that fails, I’m certain they’ll move on to killing bosses with reflect damage. I’m sure there are other things that players can abuse as well to fight boss monsters without ever having to actually fight them.
Another thing that tends to happen on many RO servers (some more than others) is that the first team that can kill an endgame boss gains a monopoly on killing it. They keep the time for themselves, and any players that do show up to attempt to kill it will face stiff competition. Usually, the monopoly team wins because the challengers have no previous experience in fighting the boss. So the monopoly team continues to control the boss, and other players are unable to experience the end game content due to the competition and learning curve.
I’ve been asked before, why do I care about abuse of bugs at boss monsters. He told he that MVP’ing basically comes down to killing bosses in as few people as possible and getting valuable rewards for doing so. The answer I told them was that if every boss monster comes down to abusing a bug, usually the same bug, what is there left to do in this game? On one hand you can easily achieve end game items and rewards, but on the other hand you’re losing the actual fun part of getting those. Sure you can get fancy new gears, but for a person who plays this game TO fight bosses, if all future content comes down to the same abuse, then I have unfortunately seen everything this game will have to offer.
So that’s it. I figured I wanted to write something on the issue, and while it turned out to be stupidly long (4 pages in word), I hope there’s some interesting information for players. I commend anyone who read the whole thing! I do indeed wish to see boss bugs fixed, but at the same time if they are going to make us have to take these things on head on, then they likely should look at the balance.
To conclude, I’ll leave a quote from a Q&A session with the jRO GMs at the 2008 User Symposium.
Q. What do you intend on doing about Ankle Snare abuse at boss monsters.
A. The current trend of the game appears to be to create harder and harder monsters that are impossible for most of our users. Some resourceful players are using skills such as Ice Wall and Ankle Snare, and while I think that this is a bug, I think that if we are to fix it we also need to review the difficulty of these Bosses.
This is a little something I wanted to go into a bit more depth than what I did on the ro forums. Since this is my journal, I have freedom to talk a bit more liberally than I would on the forums. The main topic of discussion recently is WoE:SE and the times that they will occur on iRO. A poll and discussion was recently put up regarding the times. The options are to have woe1 and woe2 occur each once a week, have both occur twice a week, or have some hybrid where both woes occur at the same time on one or both days.
Personally, I voted for one woe1 and one woe2 a week, original on Wednesday, and second edition on Saturday, and I'll explain why. War of Emperium has since the very beginning been a guild versus guild server wide battle. If people want to participate in casual PVP they can use the existing PVP rooms or in the not so distant future use the battlegrounds. WoE is a battle for territory control; holding castles provides benefits to its guild members, including castle item drops and access to the guild dungeons. There are 20 castles within WoE that can be captured... in order to ensure an engaging conflict and battle over territory its paramount that woe sees as much attendance as possible.
Many people seem to argue that by increasing the frequency of WoE, or by overlapping WoE1 and WoE2 times (effectively creating 30 castles), that it would be a good change that allows smaller guilds to get castles. My rebuttal to that is that if gravity is just handing out castles to just anyone who attends, then whats the point? Where's the fun in a server wide PVP battle when there's no conflict? Where's the glory of being able to defeat other guilds for your castle?
Its no secret that RO has less people now than it once did in the past, and WoE's have become less exciting as a result. Even large alliances would go into WoE wondering if they would be able to hold or conquer a castle. The last thing we need to do is spread woe more thinly. The number of woe times are a similar issue. Its impossible to expect players to be online in the evenings for 4 days a week. Attendance is hard enough with woe twice a week. Nothing but the most hardcore players will make all the woes. Some guilds will specialize, and only do one type, some will try to bring as many people as possible to each one, and some guilds will fall apart because their leaders can't meet the requirements of dedicating more than half the evenings of your week to RO. This means the average attendance of WoE will decrease, and the quality of WoE will go down with it.
Having one of each WoE type a week does several things. First, it means that castle holds last one week. Holding castles at the end of WoE is more significant because well, not holding a castle means you can't get one till next week, and holding a castle means you can achieve higher econ and defense rating than you would normally be able to. Guilds will be more motivated to achieve a castle hold, meaning stronger alliances will form, and higher attendance would be achieved. Secondly, since instead of just having WoE1 twice a week there would be two different WoE systems during the week, the variation between each battle your guild does would break up the repetition, which would make participation more enjoyable, and again encourage participation from members.
So thats why I voted for WoE1 Wednesday, WoE2 Saturday.
The Ranting, it never ends
This is a bit of a continuation off of my last RO rant. The usual disclaimer goes here, these rants are where I speak my mind about various things, and there's even the ever so slight chance that I might say something insightful or practical. It may be just me venting. If pretty pictures are more of your thing, feel free to skip the rant.
1) Korea Ragnarok Comparison
Since I so often refer to differences between iRO and kRO, I've decided I will make a specific section comparing the two.
I've constantly cited iRO as being one of the more expensive RO's to play, but the truth is that kRO is the most expensive RO server, in some ways. It's very popular to play net games from an internet cafe in Korea, and I'm going to touch on that matter a bit later.
First up is a direct comparison in subscription prices. All prices in USD.
|1 Month||$12.00||$23.92 (22,000 WON)|
|2 Months||N/A||$45.58 -> $22.79/month (41,800 WON)|
|3 Months||$32.00 -> $10.67/month||$64.31 -> $21.44/month (59,400 WON)|
|6 Months||$57.00 -> $9.50 /month||$121.50 -> $20.25/month (112,220 WON)|
As you can see, iRO is in fact substantially cheaper than kRO.
However, kRO players aren't all play-at-home type. As mentioned earlier, Korean online gaming has made internet gaming cafe's incredibly popular, and a substantial portion of gamers play RO from one. iRO has attempted to service net cafe's (there used to be a net cafe section on the iRO homepage), but that style of gaming simply isn't popular here.
How it works is that Gravity licenses out access to major game providers (several providers in fact, it's why kRO has tabs on its login screen to change between host provider). These game providers sell access to their games to net cafe centers. The net result is that when you go to a supported net cafe, you access the supported games for free. That means that when you play at a net cafe, your account is always active, and you never have to pay the monthly fee (beyond what you pay for access to the net cafe). Gravity further encourages play from net cafe through a series of additional benefits.
First off, all net cafe players automatically gain 50% more exp, and 1/2 death penalty (dropped to 0.5%). There are additional benefits too, which actually depend on the service level you pay for from the location you're playing the game at. Stationed in every town is an NPC that will give your character special buffs (similar to stat food) that last for two hours. They disappear on death, although you can always return to the NPC to have them renewed. In addition they also sell specific kafra shop items depending on the type of service you get.
Silver Tier Service:
ALL STATS + 3, ATK/MATK +15
Ability to Buy Greed Scrolls from the Kafra Shop
Gold Tier Service:
ALL STATS + 6, ATK/MATK + 24
Ability to buy Greed Scrolls, Red Medicine, and Blue Medicine from the Kafra Shop.
Gold Tier Service + Additional Fee (unsure on the pricing here):
Option 1: ALL STATS + 6, ATK/MATK + 24
Option 2: STR + 8, AGI +6, DEX +4, ATK + 32, FLEE + 5
Option 3: INT + 8, DEX + 6, VIT + 4, MATK + 40
Option 4: DEX + 8, LUK + 6, AGI + 4, ATK/MATK + 24
Ability to buy Greed Scrolls, Red Medicine, Blue Medicine, and Authoritative Badges from the Kafra Shop.
The two tiers, silver and gold, are what you would pay at the net cafe. You do have the option to pay a small additional fee (it's not much, although I don't know how much) to gain the last tier of service. I also don't know the pricing on the kafra shop items, although the boxes are usually 0.01US to 0.10US per unit, maybe more for the medicines. Red Medicine grants +10% max HP for 10 minutes, and Blue Medicine grants +10% max SP for 10 minutes, both disappear on death. Also the + stats are the same type as foods, so using a food item will overwrite it.
I also want to touch on the Kafra Shop side of things. As you can see, kRO is rather different from iRO. I will highlight these differences further by comparing kafra shop items.
For fun, I will include jRO numbers as well. For basis of comparison jRO, the monthly fee for jRO is 1500 yen, or $13.45, also higher than that of iRO.
In addition, I will calculate Kafra Shop item costs on the most basic level, ignoring the bonuses you gain from purchasing large quantities of points at a time (they're mostly the same across all three servers anyways). kRO offers various packages, larger boxes being cheaper per unit. I can't list them all here so I will use the middle level box.
Durration items. Cost is listed by cost PER HOUR of maintaining the buff, ignoring the possibility of deaths.
|Status Food||$0.20/h||$0.10/h||$0.54/h *|
* Status food does not disapate on death on jRO, which justifies thier higher price.
Usage items. Items here are listed per use (unless listed otherwise).
|Token of Sigfried||$0.15||$0.30||$0.67|
|Dungeon Teleport Scroll||$0.05||$0.05||N/A|
|Giant Fly Wing (per 10)||$0.33||$0.15||$0.45|
2) My opinion, and lots of ranting
This list is particularly interesting, because it highlights differences in what management for different ROs think about the various items. For example, while iRO is consistantly more expensive for almost all items here, jRO has abnormally high prices on enriched ores. Another unusual anomaly is how cheap iRO prices the token of sigfried, so cheap that they are even half the price of kRO.
Some pricing makes sense, others don't. I'm surprised to see that after working it out, having bless and agi on your character for one hour is nearly as expensive as using a battle manual for a full hour. Also interesting but bothersome fact is that its actually cheaper to use +10 STR, AGI, INT and DEX food for one full hour than it is to buff yourself with bless and agi. For the entire price of subscription for one full month, you could have bless and agi for 5 hours ($0.80 for 4 status foods, $1.88 for bless/agi scrolls). In fact bless and agi are twice as expensive. What!?
One thing I havn't covered in these charts are the permanent items. jRO doesn't sell them, at least not directly through the kafra shop. They rely on tie in sales and campaigns to sell their specialty gears. However, one interesting thing I found when looking up prices is that kRO usually charges more for permenent gears than iRO does.
Now this does make sense. Its permanent after all. I think its fairly stupid that simple priest buffs for 1-2 hours are more expensive than nearly all permanent equipment sold in the kafra shop. I don't mind pricing on big ticket items, like enriched elu, battle manuals and such, but simple character buffs should not be so expensive. Their newer additions show much fairer prices. The status foods are in good line, and the dungeon teleport scroll boxes are a grand deal. Even their newer permenant gears seem better priced. I personally think they should make some adjustment to some consumable items, or do what kRO does and make large boxes (like boxes of 50 or 100 scrolls) substantially reduced in price compared to individual purchases.
3) What I want to see
kRO has these really cool packaged sets that I would like to see on iRO. They're so cool, I'm going to describe them here.
|Package Name||Package Contents||Cost|
|1 Hour Package Type 1||
|1 Hour Package Type 2||
|1 Hour Package Type 3||
|1 Hour Package Type 4||
|1 Hour Package Type 5||
|1 Hour Package Type 6||
|2 Hour Package Type 1||
|2 Hour Package Type 2||
|2 Hour Package Type 3||
|2 Hour Package Type 4||
|2 Hour Package Type 5||
|2 Hour Package Type 6||
And thats the package sets from the Kafra Shop. I like the idea of bundling up various items into a convenient package for leveling for a discount value (atleast I think its discount). I would feel reluctant to open a dozen boxes to do what one of those two hour packages does, but I wouldn't mind paying that price for them.
kRO has some other, nifty things on the kafra shop that I'm torn about. I can't really make my mind up on the rental gears. Some of them are cool, like the observer, a cool borg like eyepiece middle gear that lets you cast sence on monsters, or the rental balista, which is not as good as a specialized bow but its high attack makes it the ultimate all-rounder. Some of them are overpowering though, such as the rental excalibur (INT+10 LUK+10), rental combat knife (much like the existing one), and rental safety ring (DEF+5 MDEF+5). The cost is decent for them, most rental gears cost anywhere from $0.80 for a week with the observer, to $4-$5 for a week with the more expensive equipment. I don't really like the idea of non permenant items, but I do think they are better than permenantly handing out broken gears.
I always wanted to see the Rental Pecopeco Hairband on iRO though. The kRO version is $2 for 2 weeks, and it grants increased movement speed like the permenant version, but the rental version additionally grants +5% aspd and 5% faster cast. I only really wanted this for aspd on my agi characters, because I'll be entirely honest, I have a deep founded hatred for the other attack speed increasing headgear, the flapping angel wings.
Some things I like though. The kafra shop specialty hairstyles are nifty, as that they are entirely athetic, and don't affect game balance. The styling kit costs $3.00 for a hairstyle, and you bring the kit to a specialty hairstylist who gives you your new style. The new styles are as follows:
I'm not a big fan of the specific styles, although I must admit that the first female style looks nice.
Another interesting addition that they've done recently is the addition of monster mecenaries. Mercenaries don't exist on iRO yet, but basically they act as a controllable partner that assists you in leveling. A mercenary contract lasts 30 minutes, although unlike homunculus you can't have your AI cast skills automatically, they must be used by the owner. It can however be supported by regular skills. The regular mercenary system covers pretty well everything you really need, so the addition of monster mercenaries is simply a cool bonus where you can have a monster fight with you. I bet they're great for catching bots too.
The monster mercenaries are exactly the same for HP and stats as their actual monster equivilant. The details are as follows:
||5 Scrolls for $1.62
10 Scrolls for $2.92
||5 Scrolls for $1.62
10 Scrolls for $2.92
||5 Scrolls for $2.17
10 Scrolls for $4.00
Although it is a bit unusual that Alice doesn't actually have heal, its cool to see monsters able to fight along side. According to some kRO posts they seem to be pretty useful and fun to use. I am a bit disapointed that they (atleast these ones) are kafra shop exclusive, but I wouldn't mind seeing them hit iRO.
4) What else could they do?
I gave this a bit of thought... most of the kafra shop items, aside from a few simply add convenience. kRO offers town teleport wings for midgard, shwarzwald, arunafeltz, and off contenent locations (separate wings for each). All RO's offer priest buffs, which again simply adds to the convenience of not having to pay for buff slave. I was thinking what else could they do.
Endow scrolls? Endow from a sage is kind of cool but I think 99% of all elemental endowing that goes on in RO are from slave accounts that hardcore players have made for convenience. Very rarely you'll actually get endowed from a sage or scholar in a party you're in. If Kafra Shops goal is convenience, why not offer elemental endow? That might feel like stretching it a bit but its an idea.
I want to throw out other ideas, but I havn't given this part quite enough thought yet. Maybe it will be the topic of a future rant.
Holy damn, I dragged that out for a huge length. Again I thank you all for reading what I have to say (I'm suprised you took the time to do so!), and any corrections, discussions, flames, are welcome. Again these are my own random thoughts on things, and shouldn't be taken too seriously.