Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Astral Diamonds Smackdown

Astral Diamonds Smackdown!

Updated October 31, 2017

With the recent mod, harvesting your AD has shifted quite a bit.  I will plan on updating this article periodically while we all adjust to the new mod.  There are many ways to make AD, and if you can do the daily methods below every day, and the weekly each week, you can easily make at least 1,000,000 AD per month, more if you really push it and farm.  This is accomplished by earning the AD with the daily, weekly, salvage, seal methods below.

When you load up your game, it is highly recommend that you:
  1. Stop by the stronghold and visit the Cleric on the left behind the fountain.  She will give you daily random quests for rewards.
  2. After picking these up, go to Protector Enclave and visit the Dungeon Chest Keymaster, Amario Clavus.  He is located to the right of the northwest entrance of the Seven Suns Coster Market.  Obtain your free daily Dungeon Chest Key from him.

Pressing K brings up the queues, and you will only create bonus AD through the random queues.  You can still create AD with salvageable items throughout all the other queues, but the random queue is the fastest way to make your daily AD.

In order to go after the random queues, you MUST queue public!  You can queue public solo and be thrown together with other unknown players in the game, or you can put your own party together.  Here is where it gets a bit frustrating.  Every player must qualify for the random queue you desire, if even one person does not qualify the queue will have a red marker on and prevent you from using it.  You can click it, and scroll down to see the requirements and which requirements are being violated.  Unfortunately, for the moment, it doesn't tell you which player is violating it.  As annoying as this can be, it is a good way in which you will queue with players of similar ability.  I'll list the requirements below for convenience.

Random: Hero's Accord
  Item Level: 12,000
  Group Requirement: 1 Tank, 1 Healer, 3 DPS
  Estimated Play Time: 30 min

Random: Epic Trial
  Item Level: 11,000
  Group Requirement: 1 Tank, 1 Healer, 3 DPS
  Estimated Play Time: 20-25 min

Random: Epic Dungeon
  Item Level: 11,000
  Group Requirement: 1 Tank, 1 Healer, 3 DPS
  Estimated Play Time: 15-30 min

Random: Dungeon
  Item Level: None
  Group Requirement: None
  Estimated Play Time: 30 min

Random: Skirmish
  Item Level: 10,000
  Group Requirement: None
  Estimated Play Time: 15 min

CAUTION: Once the queue activates and you enter the dungeon or skirmish, if you leave early you will be given a 30 minute penalty where you cannot re-queue until the timer expires.  This encourages people to not bail out on their party, thus making them wait for another player to take your place.  To avoid the penalty, the group can vote to abandon.  Once a person leaves and is penalized, anyone can leave without the penalty.

This queue system promotes players completing their campaigns and opening the various parts of the game.  Thus, it also encourages you making keys from all the campaigns so you have on hand for the random action.  You cannot open the second chest without those keys, so now being prepared from randoms pushes more playtime in all the campaigns.  Alts and bots that do the bare minimum will have considerable work to do to catch up and earn their eligibility for the random queuing.

All other queuing can still be accomplished with public or private queuing, but you will not earn bonus AD from them.  You can still earn AD from the salvageable items that drop or come from the treasure chest at the end of the Boss fight.  These drops seem to be less frequently now, but this is not proven.  After completing your randoms for the day, this is still a good way to grab AD.  What is especially cool about these is that you can solo private queue them.  This means if you have decent damage, you can solo through them and not wait for any groups to be formed.  Sometimes you can run them faster than a group, because the group waits at a door for another party member who died, or is picking up loot, etc.

Epic Dungeon
Epic Trial
Player versus Player

Be sure to do your weekly quests, every week!  You will get lot's of AD, and the timer resets every Monday morning.  So put it on your calendar, grab some guildies, and go rocket through them.  Each yield over 4,500 AD.

  • Protecting the Portal (Protector Enclave: Harper Boward, northwest on map)
  • Arcane Resevoir (Sharandar, see the woman at the fountain)
  • Red Wizards (Dread Ring, see Sgt. Knox)
  • Biggrin's Tomb (Icewindale: Caer-Konig: Icewindale Pass, middle west of map)
  • Ballad of Baphomet (The Underdark: Mantol-Derith: Bruenor Battlehammer, campfire in the middle of the map)
  • Reclaiming the Horde (Well of Dragons)

Seals Management

For all seal management go to Protector Enclave and visit the Seven Suns Coster Market in the Southwest.  There you will find various seal traders.  You never want to MAX your seals and not trade them in, because if you run another epic you will NOT EARN more than the max.  So manage those seals, and trade them when they are max or near max.  You will get salvage items for more AD!  A great strategy is to go to Protector Enclave before you start running epics, go to the seal trader, and then when you leave a dungeon you are right there if you need to do some trading.
  1. Adventurer's Seals Trader will let you trade your adventurer seals you earned doing your normal dungeons.  View General Wares, and trade your seals for the type of enchant that you are currently ranking up on your character.  Why?  Because you will receive double credit when you put the same color enchant into another of the same color - BONUS.  Also, because if you choose to sell the enchants you will generally yield more AD than the bag of rough astral diamonds.  So it is more profitable to take the enchants. Be sure to pick up your free key, just outside the Seven Suns Coster Market, you get one free key per day and it yields more seals. 1200 MAX

    IMPORTANT: This is the most convenient place to obtain your standard enchants to slot in your gear.  You can still get them off the auction house, but you can get them here for free by spending your adventure seals.  Specialized enchants (brutals, cruel, etc.) will be drops in seasonal events (siege, CTA, etc).

  2. Seal Trader Phileas Gram will let you trade your protector seals you earned doing epics. Elemental seals are no longer traded for goods, but you can trade them protector seals on Miscellany option.  Keep in mind you need protector seals for your dragonflight, so don't burn them here if you need that awesome gear! 1200 MAX

      Unrestored Equipment all worth 1,100 AD regardless of seals spent
      300 protector seals earn 1,100 AD, or 4,400 per 1200 seals
      200 protector seals earn 1,100 AD, or 6,600 per 1200 seals
      300 protector seals earn 4,400 AD, or 13,200 per 1200 seals <---Great Deal
    2. SHARDS (not salvageable)
    3. MISCELLANY (some bind on pickup), (SEAL EXCHANGE)

Salvage Methods

A quick word about salvage items: You can only refine 36,000 AD per day.  You will quickly realize that you are exceeding this. It is okay, even advisable to keep some unrefined AD always at the ready, maybe 100-200K, so that you can max refine at a click of a button every day and never worry you aren't maxing.  But what to do with the extra salvageable items?  This is where you send them to your other characters (alts), mail them or put them in your shared bank so these alts can grab them and refine them, because they get their own 36,000 AD max per day.  So you can easily have two characters earning 1 million AD per month, or three!  It is not uncommon to go on a multi-epic run of three or four dungeons and earn over 100K AD with the salvage, earned, and seal trade-ins that are also salvaged.  Fennik is soon writing a blog article on how to move that AD from your alt to your main, yes there is a way to do that too!
  1. Protector Enclave: Seven Suns Coster Market (southwest): Salvage Trader is the dude with the anvil.  You simply ride up to his booth, open your inventory, and right click your items that are 130+ in item level and you will see an option to salvage.  Once you salvage something, there is no getting it back, and you will receive the AD for it.  This is a major part of earning AD!  Don't sell salvageable items to other vendors for gold, this is noob mistake.

  2. Icewindale: Caer-Konig: Market (middle of map, west): Salvage Trader has an anvil and you use the same method as above for Protector Enclave.

  3. VIP Level 7 allows you to whip out your own anvil to salvage.  Anyone who steps into the area of affect of your anvil can also simultaneously salvage their own items too.

  4. Stronghold salvaging is possible when your guildhall is ranked up in the upper levels and your guild has chosen this path.  Ghost Templars does not currently have this salvage method.


Be sure to invoke as often as possible per day.  You get AD bonuses from these too!


Additional Options

Beyond Making 1 Million AD per Month

Auction House

If you really want to roll the dice, learn to keep an eye on the auction house.  You will become familiar with the price of things, and you will develop an eye for the good deals. Buy and resell to make profits here and there.  Do this poorly, and you will lose AD and probably pull out some of your own hair.  Do this well, and you can make millions of AD - no joke, seriously you can make a lot when you know how to feel out the market and make the time sensitive deals.


In the course of the game certain items become very valuable.  When Storm King Thunder began with Bryn Shander, Lonelywood, and Cold Run many people made a fortune in AD by running the big heroics in Lonelywood to farm lanolin.  Lanolin was a key component that everyone needed to obtain the new weapon set, get it restored, and unleash it on their enemies.  By farming it, you could get 4-6 lanolin to drop on average per hour.  At the time of writing this blog article, lanolin is selling for 18,000 each at the auction house.  That equals 72,000 to 108,000 AD per hour.  At one time they were going 40K each.  If you know what people want and you can farm it, you can defer your progress a little bit, make a killing in the auction house, and laugh all the way to the bank.  Get a group of guildies/alliance together and everyone helps each other.  It always helps to announce in alliance and certainly in zone chat.  The more players on the map you recruit to help, the faster it goes.  If you don't have enough people, your farming rate will dramatically drop and it may even be a waste of time.  Today the Cloaked Ascendancy items are super hot, everyone wants them to do the same thing with the new weapon set.

Level 25 Leadership

Getting your leadership profession to level 25, you can visit the Professions Asset dealer in the Seven Suns Coster Market.  Purchase from her, for every open slot, a worn infantry weaponry and a worn infantry armor (purchase these sooner to help yourself get to level 25 faster too!).  These are cheap and only cost some gold.  With level 25 leadership and these two items you can start making: enchanted coffers, resonant bags, artifact paraphenalia, thaumaturgic bags, and other items that give you lots and lots of usable items to rank up your character, or sell on the auction house.  Not only do you save AD by not buying these items, now you start making AD by selling what you are not using yourself.

Dragon Fangs

After you finish obtaining your dragonflight gear for your main and alts, the dragon fangs start to pile up (Max. 50).  You can spend them in various ways.  If you go to The Outfitter where you purchase dragonflight items, you can choose "6. Anything besides equipment for sale?", then "Fangs of the Dragonflight."  The bag of astral diamonds is one of the lowest yields, don't be tempted.  Instead, buy the dyes or dye packs and sell them on the auction house.  As of 4/29/17, the Pride dye pack was selling for 12,800 AD or 853 AD per dragon fang.  The bag of astral diamonds yielded 5,000 AD or 250 AD per dragon fang.

by John@nevertoad

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Thank you to Enn DubYa Kay for sharing his video, we hope you enjoy it.

Once started, click the double brackets at the bottom to go FULL SCREEN.

Players: Enn DubYa Kay, Jantas, Namno Ma, Jade Quinn, NotHalfADoctor

And Here's a Link to a bunch more TONG suggestions!

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Alliance Council September 3rd 2017 Meeting Minutes

Regular Meeting of the Alliance Council
September 3, 2017 On Teamspeak

The meeting began at 4PM ET immediately following the Alliance Warlock Seminar.

Fennik noted that there have been repeated episodes of Alliance members using Alliance chat to solicit party members for dungeon raids requiring specific gearing or item level of the participants. After much discussion, the leaders agreed to this resolution: Alliance members who organize a dungeon raid on Alliance chat may only request the basic Cryptic requirments for item or gear.

Xerxes reported that a member on Alliance Teamspeak was using a vulgar phonetic names. The members agreed that Alliance chat users are not permitted to use vulgar phonetic names. The guildmaster of the person using the name is to be informed and requested to rectify the situation.

The above two items are to be included in the Alliance Etiquette Guidelines which will be remailed to every guild leader for distribution to guild members.

Xerxes presented the schedule of upcoming Alliance Seminars: Oct 1: Healing Seminar; Nov 5: Hunter Ranger Seminar; Dec 3: Wizard Seminar. A discussion ensued about the moderators for seminars on GWF and TR. Xerxes will work with guild leaders to ascertain appropriate moderators for these 2018 seminars.

Fennik reported that in order to increase end-game play by Alliance members, he or Vol'jin will organize a weekend MSVA run with assistance from other end-game players. In this way, five or six virgin MSVA Alliance members will be able to complete the instance each time.

Feygorn began a discussion on the possibility of the Helm guild being changed each time it reaches level 20 so lower level guilds will have an opportunity to utilize the development bonuses that permit a guild to rank up faster.  After much discussion, the leaders decided to table action on the matter for five months.

The next meeting will be held on Sunday, Nov 6th at 2PM EDT on TS.

The meeting ended at 4:48PM ET.

Respectfully submitted,
Alliance Secretary

Saturday, September 2, 2017

New Templar Happenings....

Meeting of the Council of Templars
For both Ghost Templars and Spirit Templars
Friday, September 1, 2017 on Teamspeak

Xerxes opened the meeting at 2:10PM by asking Fennik to give a Stronghold Report.  Fennik, who gave an Alliance seminar on Stronghold Development on August 6th and 20th, indicated that we are currently working on the Rank 16 guildhall which should be ready to be upgraded by September 10th. He noted that we will most likely become a level 20 guild in late 2018.

Concerning recruitment, John noted that we are not actively recruiting at this time; however, both ST and GT will accept members who request admittance. Ghost Templars must leave room for Spirit Templars who request a transfer to GT. Xerxes said that there are approximtely 142 Ghost Templars and 88 Spirit Templars.

In his Report on the Spirit Templars, Haelirin requested help in completing the ST rank 6 Guildhall. The Council agreed to help ST finish the guildhall once GT reaches rank 16. To permit acceptance of new members into ST and lessen the flow of transfers to GT, Xerxes suggested that GT once again have an item level requirement for admittance to GT. The Council decided not to act on the matter. Haelirin suggested that the ST bank be reformatted according to character level and the Council agreed to do so.

Perseus reported that the daily 1:30PM ET Dragonflight is well-attended and that Dusk has been organzing impromptu daily Dragonflights at 7:30AM and 11:30 AM ET. The Council agreed to make these events offical Templar Dragonflights whereby the Templars will now have three daily activities. Haelirin reported that he will continue to arrange Marauder Events throughout the week so members can farm Influence for Stronghold development.

Concerning the Alliance, Xerxes gave the schedule of Alliance Seminars: Sept 3rd - Warlock Builds; October 1st - Devoted Clerics; November 5th - Hunter Rangers and December 3rd - Control Wizards. After discussing some etiquette issues within the Alliance, the Council agreed to ask the Alliance Council to add two new Etiquette Guidelines: 1) Persons who promote dungeon or skirmish runs in public chat must accept any Alliance member who wishes to join the party that meets the official Cryptic event requirements; and 2) Persons on Teamspeak may not use vulgar character names - a guideline to be enforced by Xerxes, the Server owner.

As Dr Death was not present, a report was not given on the crafting program.  However, Xerxes reported that Thyra is sending all the CraftieBank items to him, Dr Death, and Fennik.  He also reported that Craftie Bank has over 354K Astral Diamonds. The Council agreed that this AD is to be used to purchase Strongbox keys. Xerxes and Fennik will meet with Dr Death to discuss the implementation of the New GT member gift program.

As there was no new business, the meeting was adjourned at 2:45PM ET.  The next meeting of the Council of Templars is on Friday, October 6th, at 2PM ET.

Respectfully submitted,

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Upcoming Neverwinter Changes

Neverwinter Templars,

Cryptic is coming out with some major changes, below is just a small part to whet your appetite.  Click the READ MORE AT ARC link at the end to see the whole article.  There are some really cool, nice changes, and some that will cause distress (see bonding stones).  Enjoy!

Why the change?

Refinement is a core part of Neverwinter gameplay, but a lot of the time it could feel like it was weighing down on you as a player. The pure number of items that needed to be held on to, the matching bonuses, the different reagents for different artifact types, and yes the hoarding of items until the 2x Refinement Points weekends to maximize the gains. In the end it felt more like a chore that had to be done than a fun part of the game where the player kept making progress.

For new players, the system is overwhelmingly complicated. They don't know what enchantments to use as food, what to hold, what to look for, and we wanted to make that experience far easier for players to figure out. On top of all of that, there hasn't been any major additions to the system in a long time. We took a hard look at all of this and came up with a plan to improve it in multiple ways.

Refinement Points

Having to match enchantments, stones, and types of items created a massive amount of inventory to maintain and organize. In the end, this doesn't add to the experience as much as it takes away from it all. So we did just that, took it all away. Now players will use Refinement Points (thought you might like to keep your acronym) which will be a currency. Gemstones, Enchantments, Runestones, Artifacts, Artifact Equipment, Uncommon (Green) Equipment (must be identified), will all break down into Refinement Points which will be a currency on the inventory sheet. All of the refining will use Refinement Points for upgrades, along with reagents of course. This means you no longer have to manage all of those different item types and dread looking at your inventory or bank. You can just break it all down into a simple currency that all items share.

To go along with this we have a new conversion window that has some easy options to input all of the different convertible items that you want to break down into Refinement Points in one simple click. In addition, any item which can be converted, can be by using the drop down menu for that item. The refinement upgrade window will now have a nice clean interface where the player can slide a bar to determine how many Refinement Points they wish to add to the item. This bar will default at either the amount needed for the next level, or the maximum a player can deposit if less than a full level as we felt that is the most common action players would do. On top of that, you can now put in the full amount of RP needed to level up and upgrade all in a single button press. Nice and quick and easy!

And you may have noticed how I mentioned Identified Uncommon Equipment can be turned into RP and thought "Man, identifying all of my green drops will be such a pain!", well we are also adding an Identify All button which will take your ID scrolls and identify all the unidentified items in your inventory with one click.

Now because we switched to a currency and want to try for manageable amounts of currency. We reduced both the value of RP points of the items and the cost to upgrade items by a factor of 10. Example a black opal now awards 1,000 RP, but costs are lowered by the same factor as well. To be very clear, this does not change the cost of refinement at all! This simply reduces the values all around so we can keep the currency lower and have room for players to hold plenty of currency and grow the system in the future. We will give the exact progression charts in the technical details post as well so that you can all see for yourselves how it will be functioning.


Additional helpful links

Refinement Technical Details