I hit level 60, the current level cap for the North American servers in TERA, about a week ago. In TERA, the endgame is presented as a long push for better gear so that you can run higher dungeons to get better gear to run higher dungeons to get better gear to run higher dungeons. Nope, not a typo. There are also various raids and some things you can solo, but the endgame is designed around group play and maximizing the stats on your armor and weapons. I’ve managed to get this far alone and only talking once (to a player who asked if I was looking for a guild, to which I replied, “no thank you”). What do I do now?
Realize I’m nearing the end of playability of the game and plan accordingly
I don’t need maxed out gear and I don’t care about impressing others. So, I don’t have to hoard materials or work on my crafting skills. Recently there was a weekend event where blue boxes with random gifts spawned around the game world. I found over 150 of them during the course of my normal questing; I sold some of the contents (except things that couldn’t be sold, like the fashion coupons I traded for the outfit my avatar is wearing above) and sold 20 unopened boxes. That gave me enough gold to cover my in-game expenses for a while, so I don’t have to worry about farming materials either. It’s nice not to feel any pressure and just do whatever I want.
Complete accomplishments that are solo-able
Even though I got to level 60 without doing group dungeons or raids, I still have some zone quests left to complete. There are some BAMs (big ass monsters) I haven’t been able to defeat. TERA has an Achievements menu with various things I can still do, ranging from finding hidden paths up mountains to defeating a boss over and over. There are daily quests that give reputation points that allow me to buy decent gear and other things. I can solo some bosses in multi-player dungeons if I don’t mind going slowly.
Play in the way I enjoy most
I finally hid global chat. I had enough of debates about the sexual interests of people who like Elin characters, arguments over trolling alts, discussions of anime, and childish obscenities. I also don’t care about killing many mobs (monsters) at once. Sure, I could round up a bunch and fight them together, but I’m perfectly happy doing one or two at a time and then moving along. Some people on the TERA forums are enraged by solo players, screaming that we shouldn’t be in an MMORPG if we want to play alone, but I really don’t give a damn about their opinion and can play as I please. I have to use different skills than other lancers (the tank class I play) because I never partner with healers or damage dealers, but it’s simply a different and not inferior style. (How hard is it to use aggro and blocking skills over and over, anyway?)
I could start over playing a different class of character, but honestly, I like being a tank. So, once I get bored with my solo version of endgame, I’ll leave TERA. It’s been a nice time-waster and I still think the landscapes are fantastic, the combat system is interesting, and it’s not as grindy as some say. If I wanted to meet people and build some relationships in a guild, I could get a lot more out of it, but that doesn’t interest me right now. Overall, I’d recommend it. Maybe I’ll use some of the cash from recent birthday presents to buy into the beta of ArcheAge when it opens… hmmm. Alpha access is a bit beyond my budget for a tertiary hobby.