What To Do First In The Black Death
First Time Player’s Guide To Visiting Mercia
As usual the inspiration for this guide comes from my own experience. I’ve seen people in game asking what to do when they first play. Having died a few times now, and starting over completely each time, I have a good handle on this subject. I’m getting good at starting over. And lucky! It all comes down to the basics: Food, water, and shelter. I’ve got a bit of advice to share on how to tackle each of these problems.
Food & Water
In Mercia, you burning a lot of calories. You’ve got to keep your hunger and thirst in check at all times. Constantly foraging for berries (Strawberries, Raspberries, etc) is a priority. Killing animals will get you some raw meat. Make sure you find a camp fire to cook any raw food first! Additionally, keep an eye out for wells. This is (obviously) a good source for water. You can also sometimes forage water from rivers, streams, and even mud puddles. Although it may not be drinkable, if you do forage up dirty water, camp fires are your friend. You can boil it and make it safe to drink, or even sell. The smaller berries you forage up in the wilderness can help with thirst too.
See What’s Out There
Mercia is a pretty big world so far. While wherever you spawn when you first enter the game may be convenient, you really could be missing out. The Black Death has some incredible visuals, and equally incredible settings. Some of these places can have some start differences. For example, there is a port city just west of the capital that looks breathtaking. Freeman’s Port is probably where i’d most like to live. Additionally, there are several keeps (Crutchley) and citadels (Farleigh) that look awesome as well, and offer different experiences. So wherever you start at, at least check the surrounding provinces before you decide settle down somewhere. Even if you die, you really haven’t lost much. It’s might even be worth it just to see where you might spawn next!
Once you’ve got yourself full, it’s time to start earning gold. You need to buy a house, tools of the trade, food, cures, and so on. Gold makes the world go ’round, even in Mercia. There are a few different ways you can earn gold in The Black Death, no matter what class you are. First off is foraging. Selling all the cotton or berries that you gather. Anything ‘Awful’ that you gather is a good candidate to vendor. It’s harder to craft with, and makes lower quality items even if successful. Speaking of crafting, each class can craft specific things. For example, Knights can craft a crude shield from wood. These shields sell for ~40 gold a pop. Three shields, and you’ve got enough for a home! Find whatever it is that your class can craft, and start churning those out to sell to vendors. Finally, you can scavenge. There are loads of crates and barrels in every city, town, and campsite. Sometimes there are weapons, food, or even gold! Get in the habit of checking these. I would caution about doing so around homes that are owned by players. While they are out in the world and essentially ‘open season’, you may want to consider avoiding doing so. I’ll explain why in a little bit.
Finding a home is very important in The Black Death. Houses are passed to your characters through death, so this is how you start building wealth. The cheapest home you can buy is a little 120 gold shack. These are scattered on the outskirts of every town and city. You’ll want to do a little shopping too, and not necessarily buy the first one you come across that’s available. If you’re a peasant, for example, you’ll want one with a little garden you can plant in. If you’re a Militia or Knight, maybe a campfire would be preferred. The most important thing to look for, no matter what class you are, is storage. Not all homes have a storage box. No storage, no buy!
I mentioned earlier about not scavenging around player-owned homes. You should show a little courtesy to other players, especially as a new player. I’ve been the recipient of loads of generosity from established players. I’ve been given THOUSANDS of gold, weapons, food, and little tips and trick that would have taken me a long time to learn otherwise. I even bought someone a house on my first day playing the game. The community in the game right now is just incredibly positive. Yes, there are griefers, but this is the internet and you can’t avoid them. The good people have far outweighed the bad though, and the more steps we take to promote a good atmosphere, the better chance we have of keeping it that way.