Guide to Exploring - Indiana Jackass
June 10, 2003


Exploring is very important, since it builds your knowledge of the realms, which in turn increases your potential ability to flee and kill players. Aside of that though, exploring around can reveal to you things such as:

  • The locations of rares, uniques, unlimiteds
  • The way to do quests
  • Free versions of scrolls and useful potions
  • Shortcuts across big distances
  • Places useful to train and farm for gold
  • Undiscovered levelling areas (some are still out there!)
  • Special mobs that do things no others can
  • Knowledge that helps you understand the history of the world

    Were you surprised how much you can learn just by wandering around looking at stuff? Well.. knowledge is power, and one who has explored a lot certainly has something to be proud of. Other people will be jealous of your vast knowledge which they are too lazy to get up and find out for themselves. 150 hours of exploration is also a LOT better investment of your time than 150 hours of killing the hobgoblin soldiers to train your skills. Spending hours training like that is a waste of time if you haven't explored :)

    If you are training characters and you don't even know your way around areas that are a mere two from town then you are in.. DUN-DUN-DUNNNNNN!!!!! The TRAINING TRAP.


    You will need at least an expendable level 9 with detect invis, preferably avian, and a month to spare. Ideally you need an expendable level 40 or so healer, or something else suitably buff with good spells. Sorta hard for a newbie to get that high. If you can't get the healer up, then the next best thing is probably a level 28 or so shaman, which will be quite hardy thanks to having two defences and sanctuary. Oh and, you'll need lots of patience. I recommend exploring the hometown first, then exploring areas moving gradually further and further away from it.

    Thats areas around each hometown, then beyond, by the way. So check out everything two areas radius of Seringale, then Timaran, then Darkhaven. A word of advice: that radius is rarely left by the average player trying to hide >:).

    First Pass

    When you go out exploring an area, the first and most important thing you need to do is learn its shape. Bump into every single wall, and make a macro to open in all directions, and you will quickly learn the layout of the area. Its important to have detect invis up to spot invisible mobs. While exploring you are likely going to get killed by something you walked into. This is a sad but necessary consequence of finding your way around, so I don't advise exploring too high with characters above level 10. If you have an avian illusionist at level 9, you can explore pretty much everywhere thanks to having the detects and cheap movement plus free recalls. It will die for sure, but you are only learning the areas shape and where its doors are - so just concentrate on doing that.

    Ghosts can walk through locked doors, which is one way to get through a door you can't find a key for. Hehe, just try not to make it TOO obvious you're dying to explore, or have a good excuse ready. "But I was looking for my corpse sir!" Yeah.

    Second Pass

    After you learn the areas shape, you might want to take a closer look, and you can make a map to help you do this. While making a map you can spend the time taken reading the descriptions of the rooms. Descriptions can give clues of quests and hidden objects in the area, but there's no guarantee of that. Its a slow but sure process to inspect each room for extra room descriptions and checking around you for secret passages. Once you feel confident you have mapped the area, there is just one thing left to look at - the mobs.

    example of making a map:

    Road   Square   Road
    Important stuff for doing this properly:

    1) Use a macro to do 'open n, open s, open e, open w, open d, open u' in every room

    2) Use 'look 100.' in every room to find extra descs. It will say something like 'There are only 40 of those here.' because its counting everything you're holding. So you type 'look 40.' and 'look 39.' to check for the extra desc, until you hit your eq :).

    3) Quaff the potions and recite the scrolls later, some are dangerous and will interrupt your exploring with a death :D

    There are maps already made for some stock areas, try to get them from the internet.. to save the writing. The stock areas are easy to find even with google. BUT and this is a big BUT make sure you know the area properly without the map! This information is important to remember.

    ** It is not essential to make a map, but it IS essential to make a note (be it mental or in writing) of things of interest and how to get back to them **

    Third Pass

    Go through the mobs and try to remember everything they are using. If any of that stuff is useful, might want to mark the mob on the map you made - so that you can go back to it later. Keys and rares come to mind. Once you have learned whats got what, then you have done everything you needed. Any item you find should be identified and if possible the identify saved along with where you found it, so you can find it again later. This is not possible with a low level character, but higher level clerics and mages have the identify spell.

    Finishing touches (High level chars with ID recommended)

    Finally you need to figure out how tough those important mobs are. Its easiest to test this out with a healer around level 40 or so. Get the healer fully spelled up and initiate combat with the mob. You can use this to measure how quickly the thing beats your ass. Most mobs that can beat on level 40 healers relentlessly aren't going to be a picnic for your lowbies. Mobs that are aggressive to your healer are undoubtedly a high level. Use the consider command to help guess at its level. As you beat the mobs, and equipment falls into your hands, identify it and save the ID along with the area you found it. Higher level characters also usually can afford to buy the things from the shops, and things like that.

    If the mob is very tough, but doesn't appear to have anything, it might have had its rares maxed out. Keep a note of what mobs might have had rares, and check in on them from time to time. It may take months to find out where every rare loads. Tough mobs make tough zombies, and tough illusions, keep that in mind.. :)

    There is one more way to guess at mob level, though I won't guarantee this is always correct. As a general rule, the level of an object from a monster is equal to the level of the monster. The beauty of this is you dont even need ID. If you sacrifice an object, you get half of its level in gold coins. So a level 50 object, 25 gold coins, indicates a level 50 mob. Mobs which are 5-7 levels higher than you are worth trying to level on too.

    There are over 100 areas in AR. The author has used this method to explore all of them, and has been in several cabals including Justice over the last few years, putting the knowledge to good use.