Newbie Merchant Guide
I tried to make a Merchant to go Alchemist and messed him up royally early on. I than thought about how there is a Mage guide pinned over in the Mage section and wondered why no one wrote a starting Merchant guide for this area. So here I am going to start one from the perspective of someone who is making it as he goes. I will mention my own mistakes in the first Merch (which I deleted) and what Ic am doing different and why. I am doing this as a way to give back as someone said to pay it forward to me in Yggdrassil server and want to make sure new players who want to play this class and it's paths can do so using someone's own mistakes and what he learned from them.
I will do a section for each area that I will call "games"; Novice, Early, Middle, Late with what levels they hold for in the three after Novice. I will add each area as I hit what I think is where it starts as I play so expect edits from me on this. But let's first start with some of the basics.
Before though we get into the stages of your growth to your first Second Job Class (before Transcending), I want to cover a little bit of info for new players reading this guide (I would hope anyways). This includes what a Merchant is, general playing rules I've followed in game, and some general strategies for how to get the most out of the class.
What is a Merchant?
So let's start here...What is a Merchant in Ragnarok Online?
Merchants and their related class lines in iRO are the Economic engines of the game. They buy, sell, make, and trade in wears that are used by others. This is how the majority of their time is spent, making zeny! They also can in a fight can act as a hybrid of all the other classes in that they can tank, support, heal, and fight. They don't do it as well as the specialists but your speciality is logistics in the party, not tactics. You make sure you got what the group needs in the field, not what is done when you get there (covered in Strategies). Leave that to the magic and sword users unless you are a Battle Smith or Battle Alchy.
So, why play one?
Yes, the other classes can make zeny but they don't got the Merchant skill set for it. Also, if you got more than one character, Merchants and the like are great for supporting them through either buying equipment that you need if you got the zeny by transferring through the Storage System and vice versa when they find a rare item you can vend off for some zeny. Alchemists make great compliments to Mage and Acolyte classes due to their ability to make Blue Potions for SP recovery.
That said, many of your skills are aimed at money making and the most important is Vending! You help buy and sell to the other players of the game and this is how you make the majority of your zeny is hawking wears in places. I already go into a little rant on the Economy of this game when it comes to the Marketplace later on so I will avoid it here
It is also a pretty easy class to get used too along with the thief and swordsman. Granted, I only play the latter of the two but having a Merchant has made the both my Mage and Swordie easier to play with!
So let's go into the next thing as I assume you are familiar with the stat system. If not, do so!
General Rules and Common Sense of Ragnarok Online
I've been playing a fair bit and noticing a few things so I thought I'd cover this for new players getting into the game. I want to set players off right with good habits, not bad and I notice some have some bad habits in game. So let's go over some things that can apply from Novice to 3rd Class.
First thing to say is this is just a game and you will die in the field and have to respawn multiple times. You will also run into jerks and idiots not to mention bots. If you get frustrated, take a break! Take a break also to eat and what not. Don't let the game rule your life!
Loot: Whether it's stealing loot or leaving it behind, these are two behaviors that drive me nuts! The former is just plain mean to those who work to get those drops for a quest or to get a skill. The latter is wasted zeny (never waste a freaking Zeny!). In either case, ask first before you pick up unless the person is running at high speed.
Approriateness of Behavior: While this is not a vice at all and appreciate both bad jokes, puns, inappropriate jokes, etc. keep in mind that kids play this game too as well as making sure to not speak ill of other players behind their back or to their face in game. Think before you type or do something with the emotes/sit feature please!
Kill Stealing: Stuff happens and sometimes you click the same monster as someone else. Always good to apologize though and also, if you have a lot of people in an area of a map; just move someplace else to avoid misclicks.
Bots: These things can make life hard on many maps by one of two methods...overhunting or causing possible fast respawns to the point of huge mobs showing up of certain monsters. Either way, if you get tempted to bot...DON'T!!!!
Now for something I like to call PIF which is getting it's own section.
This got it's own section rather than being put in the above section because this alone is what keeps me coming back to this game is the community and how nice everyone tends to be to everyone else. PIF is short for Pay It Forward. Basically, you get helped out...help out someone else and keep that going forward! Giving a new player 50k zeny or someone in one of the starting classes better equips or even helping them level up! Heck, write guides for the character you are playing like I am with this Merchant.
General Strategies for Playing a Merchant
Now to cover some things I learned from playing my Merchant up to where he is now. Let's roll people!
Solo Vs. Party: The great debate is do you Solo or do you Party? I tend to solo a lot but can do both and I will cover them both in seperate.
Solo: Solo play can be fun but a challenge for a Merchant. You don't do it as well as the Swordies but the majority of this guide is written from solo play so most of what I say mainly applies to solo.
Party: The best aspect of this game and other MMOs is the social aspect and being in a party can be very rewarding and make it easier to play, quests also become easier. One thing I should note is when you set up a Party, try to stay within a certain level range (5-10 higher or lower) than your levels in order to use Experience Even Share. It's also good to set the rest to sharing with the party. Try to travel with a dedicated tank/melee, healer, and ranged combat support(arrow, gun, or magical) for a party as well.
Supplies: Try to know where you are going and make sure you are prepared for the trip whether you are going solo or with a party. If the former, you know what you are walking into and how to handle it. If with a party, ask if anyone needs anything before going into the field.
Fighting: Always go into a fighting with buffs running! Crazy Uproar + Con/Awake Pot + Buffs from Aco can be of great benefit out in the field. Also, if you can, make sure you got the best equips you can afford and have on hand. Elemental Weapons or Upgraded are the best.
Why did I choose a Merchant and choose to write this guide?I've got a mage I am playing and noticed how quickly he could burn through potions and zeny as I am soloing him (probably my first mistake) and started to wonder if I should get a merchant to keep him supplied in potions than I looked it over and realized Alchemist was a good path for that reason as well as Potions being a high-demand market.
This led to the creation of my first merchant and the inspiration for this guide. Any input from others is welcome I should say and will be included here with notes on who posted it (linked as well).
Now to start the rest of this guide.
Novice Game(Levels> Base 1-10)
So to start off with, let's go over the start as a Novice as much of what you do here can affect everything to come.
Stats:So you are at the character making screen and wondering what to do with those stats?
This all depends on what you want to do for your Second class (Regular and or Transcendent). So to help with that, I provide I reference this post> this; Post #2 from the Blacksmith or Alchemist thread down further in the Merchant section here. This is what I used as I am more interested in money-making. Everyone uses potions after all!
So, what I did before as go with luck as my main stat with dex and vit. This was my mistake and part of why I am writing this guide.
What did I do differently with the restart? I set Dex and Agi to 6 (you could go 7) and kept Str and Int at 5 (could go 6 on Int if you want). I will explain later why I did this shortly. But what you should be doing with raising them is this set up> Dex and Agi than Luck, rinse and repeat. You should be by the time you leave the training area your stats should look like this when you are at Base Level 10: Str 5/Agi 12/Vit 4/Int 5/Dex 11/Luk 8
What else could be done though for starting stats though is this> STR 5-9/AGI 5-9/VIT 9/INT 1-5/DEX 9/LUK 1-5.
Now why that set up? It leaves room open if you haven't decided on a second job class yet.
Original Poster: meoryou2
This will work, but it will be slower to level than a VIT based cart revolution mob build, swap out the AGI and VIT.
The Agi and Dex is to help early on. AGI benefits flee rate (if you need to run), and attack speed. The later is also affected by DEX which also improves how often you hit a foe and can give you a tiny boost on ASPD. This might sound kind of swordsman but you need to survive your early levels and after and also DEX is one of the highest stats for Alchemist and Blacksmith.
Original Poster: meoryou2
AGI helps you avoid attacks, up to 95% evasion success rate ( even with 400-500 flee at level 150 a poring will still hit you roughly 5 attack out of 100 ) DEX does not give you an extra attack, it is only for HIT and a very small ASPD increase. Also, FLEE gets reduced drastically if there are more than 2 monsters hitting you.
Equip:Keep what they give you until you are ready to leave than sell it all. This will be explained in the next section.
Other: I would say take the quests you can get but be careful as you aren't a mage. Also, with the exception of what you need for the Merchant Guide Quest, SAVE ALL DROPS!!!! You can use the Level 10 Overcharge to sell them to the potato merchant and get upwards of 3,000 zeny before you go to Alberta (every class should do this when you hit Base 10). Try to Item Appraise any weapons you get here as drops. One thing you should do is save items that could be used in your Second Class Jobs for making stuff if possible. You can find the info and other goodies on here for it.
Original Poster: meoryou2
Level 10 OC is not worth maxing immediately, you are better off getting enlarge weight and pushcart maxed first to carry more loot and walk full speed with a cart ( carrying more loot / pots as well ). many builds also don't bother to get OC at all.
For the Quest you get from the Merchant Guide, kill the Porings on the first level of the training area. They collect the items people don't grab so you could easily get enough for 300z to meet the requirements for completion.
Leveling:Stick with Training Grounds Levels 1-3 unless you can form a party with other Novices and set the Exp to Even Share so you can all benefit from the hard work of the group. Part of playing an MMO is social and you can build early friendships in game from this experience. Such things can lead to great Guilds with the right mix of people.
Original Poster: meoryou2
Parties are fun at all levels /no1
Early Game(Levels> Base 10-20/Job 1-20)
So now you are in Alberta and ready to go Merchant. *channels his Inner Fluttershy* yay! Now let's go over your starting off as a Merchant!
This was where I really started to mess myself up and the mistakes of my Novice days came back to haunt me severly. One thing you should be is NEVER without zeny as a Merchant. So let's begin with Stats again.
Stats: This is where you should start to build towards your Second Job Class. If you are going Alchemist, start on STR than DEX than VIT and rotate as needed with points left put into INT to keep your SP up for Crazy Uproar and Cart Revolution later on.
Original Poster: meoryou2
All INT on an alchy is not the best way to go, you want high STR just like a smith, once you hit biochemist you want to get more INT with less STR until you hit mid level genetic. Again AGI is a poor choice for the alchemist branch VS the VIT stat. DEX on an alchemist should be a max of 60ish ( same for when you trans to biochemist ), just enough to hit the monsters you will be leveling on. On Alchemist keep INT maybe a max of 30 at level 70, then don't raise it again.
Equips: The Axe they give you is the best you can get right now for your level so hold on to it. Armor as well as you can't afford much but at least you could do boots and some better headgear. Also, the Axe is the reason why you really don't need to worry about STR unless you are going Blacksmith. Hold on to your Zeny for buying a better Axe later at Level 18. Upgrade it in Pontera as it's cheap to buy the metal and upgrading for Level 1 Weapons so take it as high as you can (+6 is the safe limit on level 2 weapons). Once you get some money, use it to buy good armor though to replace the Novice Suit you got when you can and I reccomend CHAINMAIL! But you can also go for padded armor too. Survival is the name of your game right now!
Original Poster: meoryou2
Axes after level 28-30 are useless, get a swordmace and go to town.... while being able to wear a shield with resistance against the monsters you are fighting ( needed for mobbing ) as you collect more loots and earn zeny.
Skills: You can easily fix these mistakes in Pontera with the Hypnotist near the Tool Dealer Building in the center of town. Your early game skill grab progression should look like this:
Enlarge Weight Limit 5 -> Pushcart 3 -> Vending
Open Buying Store
Vending will allow you to get a good cash flow early on and Pushcart will make things easier to carry things as even with Enlarge Weight Limit, you still can run the risk of going to the 50% of weight line and losing the ability to recover HP & SP naturally.
meoryou2 does bring up a good point on Quest Skills so hang on to items you need for
them. Info on the Merchant Quest Skills can be found here so try to save up what you need to complete them from what you find in the field. Right now you can only get Crazy Uproar and Open Buying Store skills and the latter is the easiest due to only having to pay up for the skill (10,000 zeny though). Not sure how useful it would be though to have this skill. Maybe use it to buy up the needed skill quest items? You need buying tickets though and you can get those in Alberta from the same guy you got the skill from.
Original Poster: meoryou2
Pushcart is needed ASAP for carrying stuff, OC does not do nearly enough. Vending is also decent because there are some low level drops that are always in popular demand from other players, this is the way you will make the bulk of your money at first.
Original Poster: meoryou2
Wrong, get ALL the quest skills, crazy uproar helps out cart revo and cart revo will be your main skill for killing stuff.
Other: Save the items you will need for what your Second Class makes, as well as Creature Cards for vending stock when you can really start Vending in your Middle Game (put it in Storage once you can). Otherwise, NPC the rest once you got Overcharge to start bringing in the Zeny along side your vending of rare ites. Note to check the Creature Card you get for what it does cause you could also make use of it early on to further your path as a Merchant. Event Items are also sometimes high demand due to how rare they can be.
Another thing is join Eden Group. They can give you some good quests and rewards with EXP and good equips.
Leveling: Stick to the monsters you were killing in the Training Grounds till Job Level 10 and you are Base Level 12 or higher. Avoid Creamies outside Alberta unless you know you can win and got enough Red Potions to help you out. If you can, find an Acolyte or a friend who has a high level char to help as the idea right now is to build your Zeny base early on.
Original Poster: meoryou2
Partying with acos is good, also gets them used to mobbing with someone because once you hit genetic you will ONLY mob ( even once you hit 50ish on alchemist you won't want to single kill... it's too slow. )
Once you hit Job 10 or 11 and Base 12 or higher, Thief Bug Eggs and Hornets should be your meat. You can find this west of Pontera. Be careful though about grabs as you could click on a Thief Bug and if there is more than one around, your back at your Spawn Point faster than a snowball melts in heck.
Hitting Base 15/Job 15, I'd say switch to Wormtails and Boas near Alberta or even Mukas in the desert south of the field between Prontera and Izlude. Careful with the Mukas though as they got a nasty attack that will do you in with a 1HKO (I saw 200+ damage to me on my Swordman). Stick with these till Base/Job 20.
Middle Game(Levels> Base 20-30/Job 20-30)
So you have made it to this level and I hope so far got a good amount of creds, right? Well let's get to work on your Mid Game!
Stats: Just keep going the way recommended and you should be fine. Might want to throw something into Luck if you didn't do anything with that stat just to get it up to 11 and take advantage of Perfect Dodge and Crits. I myself have this for a spread but my plan is to hybrid as a Battle/Potion-maker Alchemist: STR 16/AGI 16/VIT 21/INT 16/DEX 16/LUK 11
Equip:Start by getting the hammer and maxing it to +6. This will be useful till Level 27/28 than switch to the Swordmace and Shield meoryou2 reccomended. Also, chainmail and any robes and accessories you can afford. A Heal Card would be a nice find as would a Roda Frog Card for the extra HP and SP (400 and 50 respectively) if you can find it and that's based on research, not actual experience in game.
What else you can do is get the Eden Group Equipment Quest Items. The Eden Saber I has an attack of 147 versus the Swordmace's 130. While it sacrifices some of the latter's higher ASPD (which can be compensated with Increase AGI, Concentration/Awakening Potions), it hits harder and with Crazy Uproar active...it dishes out damage. The downside is it can't be upgraded like the Swordmace can but the Swordmace needs Oridecon anyways to be upgraded and that is a rare find or buy for you unless you know a good Blacksmith who has it on surplus. In the end, the weapon choice is up to you.
The Eden Group Hat itself is a good grab and can be upgraded for a stat boost to one of the stats. Choose the one that is primary to you when you get through the third course of the quest.
The other items are all also better than what NPCs sell or what you got for the most part (the robe is the sole exception for right now). Also, if you can afford it...CHAINMAIL!!!!!
Skills: If you haven't already, get the Crazy Uproar but one of the items might be a hard find - the Pearl as the monsters that drop it are well above you in level. Check both the Eden Group and Prontera Marketplace or post in the Marketplace here. Also, you SHOULD have Mammonite by now and be working towards maxing it as well as Vending and Pushcart. Once you hit 30, maybe go for Cart change if you don't like the basic one they give you.
Other: Keep collecting items (Quest, Rares, Etc.) that you could possibly vend and sell the junk you get from leveling. Bottles are something one could make a ton off of as well as Discounting the Potions from the NPC. That's what I do as well as selling event stuff or my old weapons when I no longer need them. Try to be fair in your pricing. I can understand if you made it yourself or it's a rare drop from a monster or MVP but (rant warning)seriously...some of the prices in the marketplace are ridiculous (rant over)!
A note on where to hawk your wears. The Marketplace itself is crowded and so is the front of Eden Group HQ. A good place to plant yourself is near the gates in Prontera or near the mission boards for the first level or near the stairs on the second level of EGHQ (but try to not be in front of the boards so people avoid misclicking on you when they want to take a mission). Another good place is near popular dungeons and spawn points in the cities.
Leveling: You should be able to handle Peco Pecos by now and they make good leveling up to Level 25/26 along with Mukas. Past this point, I'd go play in Ant Hell. Not only can you get some good leveling but you can also get plenty of drops off the ants there. Just be careful as they like to assist when an ant of the same kind are attacked. The eggs give good exp and bottles/phracon which you can sell off in the market. Bring a pushcart though so you don't overload (you lose HP/SP regen if your carrying more than 50% of your weight).
Another good place to level quickly is Payon Ghost Cave in the Archer's Village. The undead and Poporings give good exp and you can make a lot of cash off Overcharge for the drops (making sure you don't need them first). I just spent the last two days there and jumped from level 25 to 30. Hint: Crazy Uproar+ Con Pot makes you nearly unstoppable. Also, bring lots of potions for recovery. You will occasionally get mobbed by Zombies and Familiars.
Late Game(Levels> Base 30+/Job 30-50)
You are now 10-20 Job levels from your second class and this is where things can get slow and drive you nuts possibly. This is the serious grind time for any character. So what do we do? We charge in and do our best! The Late Game folks for a starting Merchant is worth the effort.
Let's dig our heels in for the long haul everyone!
Stats: You can stop now throwing anything into INT and keep your focus on STR, VIT, and AGI. These are far more important but don't neglect DEX as you still need to hit what you are leveling on.
Equip:Weapons should be either the Swordmace or Eden Saber plus the best shield you can get or once you get to Level 33...the Buster. I am actually using the Buster and it is definitely worth looking at. If you can get it and got the money, upgrading it to +5 with Ori is a good investment, same with the Swordmace and Shield.
Armor should still be Chainmail right now, nothing else better for you. If you got the money, get some accessories with slots or that add bonuses to stats. If you did the third Eden Equip Quest...upgrade your hat to a stat you think could use the boost.
Skills: You should of maxed by now either Mammonite, Pushcart, or Vending and close to doing the same on the other two. Discount and Overcharge should also be somewhere in this as well. Finally, GRAB CART REVOLUTION!! It is useful in mobbing. ^_^
Other: You are so far doing a great job and now to tell you something...we are taking you all the way to Job 50 for one reason...to save you 50k zeny and item hunting! Yeah, the job change tests will allow you to skip the first portion of the test if you get to Job 50. Not all the Second Class Tests do this and some provide rewards but it is useful to do it anyways.
Grab some of the Eden Quests. Not all of them though but the ones for this level rewards in Novice Red Pots and they can help you in a pinch. They are also a good break from the monotony of leveling in the 26-40 board.
Finally, as a reccomendation for the area I will suggest for leveling for the final push from Job 40-50, go crazy if you got the Zeny on the Fruit, Veggie, Meat, and Milk Merchants as well as the Tool Shop for Yellow, White, Green, and Awakening Potions though check the Player Merchants in Eden and Marketplace for cheaper on the pots than what you get for Discount though and buy in bulk. Put the surplus in your wagon and what you need in your bag. Trust me, you will thank me for that advice when you hit Level 40 on Base and Job.
Leveling: From 30-40 you should be bashing Elder Willows, Horns, and Cocos in the head (grab the quests from Eden for extra EXP and some Novice Potions if you can, this will save you money in the long run.)
Once you hit Base 40, switch to Orc Village and/or the Orc Dungeon. The first level can be frustrating as heck with the mobs of Orc Zombies but the second level has a safe, passive, non-assisting monster known as the Zenorc (which is a looter) but it also has the Orc Skeletons and last but not least...the Orc Archer and they hit like sledgehammers! Being in a party is practically a pre-req for this area though but can be soloed. You will also be here for a LONG TIME as this area got my Swordie (with help from a pair of Acolytes) from Job 40 to Job 50 and Base 42 to Base 56 before I did the Crusader test. This is where you need all those healing items I told you to get for! If you also got the Novice Red Pots, they weigh nothing but always nice to have extra stuff on hand, especially if you end up in a party. Heck, you could vend healing items till the cows come home and make a killing on that.
So I conclude this guide on starting a merchant from scratch and the reasons for doing so. I hope you all find it to be of help if and when you decide to do one.
I will warn you I might delete my mage in the near future as for one, I am getting bored with him; and second, I noticed a lack of guides for the Archer and both are excellent ranged support classes, both can benefit from Merchant Support, both are Skill intensive builds (mage more so than archer). So I'd watch in the future for a possible second guide from me done in a similar fashion to this one.
All of you take care out there in the field!
Edited by GalenDresden, 11 October 2011 - 08:59 AM.