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New Player Guide

 

· What this guide will help you accomplish.
· Creating a character.
· First things first: how to move, speak, and get help.
· Your starting town and first goal, explore.
· Where's the action? The basics of hunting.
· Managing your inventory.
· StormFront starter tips.
· What next? Other sources of information.

Also see: The New Player FAQ

 
 
What this guide will help you accomplish.
After reading this guide, you should be able to create a character, move around and speak to others, find your way around town, and learn the basics of hunting.
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Creating a character: The quick road to success!

From the GemStone IV website, click on "Go Play!" and choose to create a new character, then select which game front end you wish to use. StormFront is highly recommended for new players, if it is compatible with your computer system.

Graphical Character Manager

If you use a PC and any modern browser, you will be taken to the graphical character manager, which is a series of web pages. Each page has choices you can make to determine various aspects about your character. If you are unsure about things like culture, you can select none for the time being and then change it later on after you have played a while. You can only set your culture once, so be certain.

On the character statistic and skill training pages there are buttons to allow the game to generate your stats and training for you if you want to get off to a quick start and aren't ready to do that part yourself yet.


Text Character Manager

If you are using a browser that is not supported by our character manager, you will be taken to the text character manager system where you will be presented with the same choices to design your character. In the text manager there is also a choice to allow the game to generate your stats and training for a quick start.

If you already have specific ideas about what sort of character you want to play, you will want to use the full character creation method. This method will give you complete control over your character statistics and trained skills. If you want to use this method, it's a good idea to read the documentation on the GSIV website about how things work.

The last decision to make during the character creation process is to choose a name. Try to choose a name that would be fitting for a person in a medieval fantasy world and for the race you wish to play.

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First things first: How to move, speak and get help.

The first thing you should note is the quick links above the input bar. The last quicklink is titled get assistance. Clicking on this link will bring up a list of helpful links. The first one you should browse if you have questions is the Help link. The Help link lists and number of subjects you might be curious about. For instance, to get help on magic, you would click the get assistance link, then the Help link and finally the Magic link.

The second link to look at under get assistance when you aren't sure what to do next is Advice. Every time you click the Advice link, the game will asses where you are and try to guess what you should probably do next. It will suggest a course of action and help you accomplish the task.

A good source of up to date information can be found by clicking the button to the left of the quick links and selecting Simutronics from the drop-down list. The second quicklink is news. Clicking on this link will open a News window where you can read news items by clicking on them.

Command Entry Users

The first command to remember when you are done with creating your character is HELP. The HELP command lists a number of subjects you might be curious about. For instance, to get more help on magic just type HELP MAGIC and some information on magic will be displayed.

The next command to remember is ADVICE. Every time you use the ADVICE command, the game will look you over and try to guess what you might need to do next. Once it figures this out it will suggest a course of action and tell you what to do to accomplish the task.

Another source of important information is the game News that you see listed every time you log in. You might have to scroll up a bit to see all the listings. Type NEWS HELP for information on how to use the news system.

Speaking.
It's certainly no fun to wander about a town full of people if you cannot talk to them. If you are using StormFront, you will start in Chat Mode. That means anything typed into your input bar will come out as your character saying it. When in Chat Mode, all game commands need to be done using Point and Click. (You will see many underlined items in the StormFront client and in the game. Simply click on them to get a menu of options.)

Command Entry Users

To speak while in Command Mode, simply type SAY or a ' character followed by whatever you want to say after that and press the enter key. It will look something like this (for this example, we'll assume your name is Quinn):

You type the following line:
'Hello there, I just flew into town and boy are my arms tired!<press enter>

You will see this:
You exclaim, "Hello there, I just flew into town and boy are my arms tired!"

Everyone else with you will see this:
Quinn exclaims, "Hello there, I just flew into town and boy are my arms tired!"

Simple, yes?


Moving about.
Well now you can speak, but no one will stand still long enough for you to get a word in? No problem, you can move just like everyone else...but first...where are you?

Refer to either your Room window for a name, description and obvious exits of the area you are in or click on the look link.

Command Entry Users

The LOOK command will tell you where you are by displaying a name of the area, a description, and the obvious paths or exits.

As you might imagine, those obvious paths and exits must lead somewhere! To move to a new location, simply type the name of the obvious exit displayed, or click on the underlined direction in StormFront. For example:

You see the following:
Obvious paths: north, southwest.

This means you can leave the area by clicking on the underlined direction or by typing NORTH or SOUTHWEST. You may also abbreviate these directional commands N for NORTH, SW for SOUTHWEST etc...

Sometimes you find yourself in a location similar to this one:
[Hallway]
The hallway is dimly lit and you can just barely see the end of it. A large black door stands next to a bead curtain which is waving slightly from some unseen wind.
Obvious exits: none.

When you find yourself in a location with no obvious exits, don't panic. Read the location's description carefully. Look for underlined words in the room's description. If they are underlined you may interact with these objects. Some objects are portals that lead to other rooms. In the above example, a large black door and a bead curtain are the prime candidates. To use them, simply click on them and select a command from the menu. Portals will have a go selection (command entry users may type GO command followed by the name of the place you are trying to go. For example: GO DOOR to go through the door. GO CURTAIN to go through the curtain).

When you leave the blind alley you begin you adventuring life in, you will come out at Silverwood Manor. This is the home of the Order of Lorekeepers, also known as the Mentors. They exist to help new players. The Lorekeepers are a good source of information on a wide variety of topics such as spells and combat, profession training, roleplaying advice, and Elanthian lore. If you ever want a bit of extra help, or find that something has you terribly confused, go to Silverwood and ring the bell.

The screen scrolls too fast!
If you have never played a text based game before, the text moving quickly up your screen can seem a bit daunting at first. But never fear! Everyone who plays went through the same experiences and adjustments. Take your time and scroll back up if you feel like you missed something. You will get used to it before you know it and soon be playing like an old hand just like everyone else!

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Your first goal: Learning about yourself and the town around you.

There are a variety of panels, links and windows in Stormfront that tell you information about yourself. Here are a few of the more important ones:

Injuries
The Injuries panel shows a graphical representation of injuries, scars and health points. Additionally, below the input bar are 4 meters which represent your health points, spirit points, mana points and stamina level.

Experience
The Experience panel shows your current level, your experience until next level, your mind state, the amount of physical and mental training points your accumulated and a few links for more experience information and management.

Skills and Skill Goals
By clicking the skill goals link on the quicklink bar, you open up the graphical skill manager. Here you may see your current skills, train in skills and reallocate training points.

Character Sheet
The character sheet link in the default quick links opens a window that will show a detailed snapshot of your character's status. Name, level, race, profession, experience, wealth, skills, stats, encumbrance and features are shown, among other things.

Command entry users may type the following commands to get the same information from above:

HEALTH Displays your health points, spirit points and overall physical well-being. Check this often when in combat.
WEALTH Displays how much silver you have with you and reminds you about any debts owed.
EXP Displays your current level, experience and other information.
INFO Displays even more detailed information about your character.
SKILL Displays details about your current skill levels.

 

So you know some things about yourself, but what about your surroundings? One of the most important things you can do in the game is explore. Getting to know your starting town is essential as there are many shops, taverns, inns, and other places that will help you in your adventure. But where to look first?

Directions
Use the directions link to display a list of places of interest. To get specific directions on how to get to one of these places, just click on the place name. For example, to get directions to the local herbalist, click on "Herbalist" on the list on your screen (command entry users may type DIR HERBALIST). You will be told the direction to go to get closer to the herbalist. In fact, it will keep telling you which way to go over and over until you either get there or you click the DIR STOP link. (command entry users may type DIR STOP). Directions only work within town. Once you've found your way outside past the gates, you are on your own.

Important Hint: Your character begins at level 0. At this level, you are very weak. It is very difficult to fight your way to the next level. However, you can advance your character much easier by exploring the town! New characters are awarded experience for visiting important locations throughout the town. Use the directions system and visit all the locations listed. Talk to other players there and get to know the hot spots and hangouts. You'll find you can gain your first level quickly and learn vital information along the way!

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Where's the action?! The basics of hunting.

Now it's time to earn your dinner. The most popular way to earn experience and silver is hunting. Since you are just getting started, you'll want to concentrate on survival. Take careful note of these tips and you'll be on your way as a hunter, instead of the hunted.

Tools of the Trade: Weapons and shields.
To survive as a new adventurer in the more dangerous areas of GemStone IV, you'll need to have combat gear and the knowledge of how to use it correctly. Use the inventory link to see what you are wearing, and more importantly, what is in your right and left hands. Also, you can just peek at your Inventory panel to the right of your story window and your hand display at the top left of the Stormfront client.

You should already have some type of gear supplied to you when you created your character. Which type will depend on which skills your character is trained in. If you have put them away, click on your weapon or staff from your backpack or sheath. Can't see them? Try clicking on your backpack or sheath and selecting the look in option. This will open a container panel. You can then click on your weapon or staff and select get to put it into one of your hands. Alternately, you can drag your weapon from your backpack over to an empty hand in your hand display.

As for shields, you can wear your shield to store it by wearing it over your shoulder, or remove it to ready it in your hand.

Important: Your weapon and shield won't do you much good unless you are holding them correctly. Hold your weapon in your right hand and your shield in your left hand. Look at your hand display. Make sure your weapon is in your right hand and your shield is in your left. If these are backwards, simply click the actions... link and select swap items.

Command Entry Users

INV or INVENTORY will show you what you are wearing and holding. LOOK IN <container> will show that container's contents. If the container is worn and open, you can usually just GET <item>. If the container is inside another container, you may have to GET <item> FROM <container>.

WEAR SHIELD and REMOVE SHIELD are your shield storage and ready commands.

 

Let's hunt!
Now you need to find a good place to hunt. If you are in the towns of Wehnimer's Landing or Ta'Vaalor, seek out the catacombs. If you are in the town of Icemule Trace, seek out the tunnels near the Alchemist's or go outside the South gate. (Some gates in some towns require a small fee to get back in.) Use Directions if you have trouble locating these areas. Once there, you are likely to encounter some hostile creatures. When you are attacked, it will look something like this:

Once there, you are likely to encounter some hostile creatures. When you are attacked, it will look something like this:

A giant rat tries to bite you!
AS: +10 vs DS: +58 with AvD: +33 + d100 roll: +83 = +68
A clean miss.

That giant rat is hostile! You will want to respond by clicking on the rat and selecting target. You may then click on attack in the Combat panel located in the upper right area of the StormFront client. You should see something similar to this:

You thrust with an estoc at a giant rat!
AS: +0 vs DS: +2 with AvD: +36 + d100 roll: +33 = +67
A clean miss.
Not even close.
Roundtime: 5 sec.

There's a lot of information there. We don't want to get into a lot of deeply involved number crunching just yet, so lets keep it simple.

AS Attack Strength
DS Defensive Strength
AvD Attack vs. Defense Comparison
d100 Dice Roll of 1 to 100

When something attacks you, you are seeing the attackers Attack Strength(AS) vs. your Defense Strength(DS). The more DS you have, the safer you are.

When you attack a creature, you are seeing your Attack Strength(AS) vs. the creature's Defense Strength(DS). The more AS you have, the more likely you are to hit the creature and cause damage.

If you look carefully at the example above, you'll notice that your AS when attacking the rat was 0. That's certainly not much. You can change the amount of your AS by changing your stance.

Your stance in combat determines the amount of effort you are putting into attacking or defending. Use the STANCE command or refer to your Combat panel to view your stance. Command entry users type STANCE HELP to view all the possible stances you have available. Defensive stance is the safest stance; use it while travelling in dangerous areas. In offensive stance, you are applying all of your skill to your attack. Use this stance to strike a killing blow to your opponent. But be careful, for in offensive stance you've little to protect yourself other than your armor or the occasional defensive spell.

Experiment with the different stances while in combat. Find a stance that works best for you and don't forget to return to a defensive stance after the battle. You never know what may jump out of the woodwork.

AvD refers to how well that particular type of attack fares against the armor the target is wearing. The numbers can be different each time, depending on what type of attack is used and what type of armor is being worn.

The d100 roll is a random number generated between 1 and 100 that simulates rolling dice, like in a tabletop role-playing game. The higher you "roll" the more likely you are to be successful in that activity.

Remember that terms and numbers like AS and the d100 roll are there for you as a player to understand what is happening during combat. It would be OOC (out of character) to speak about them out loud, since your character doesn't know anything about computer games.

After the battle.
You've killed your first giant rat and survived. That's good; a fine story to tell at the tavern, but what else is there to gain? Well, there are those that profit from the sale of animal and creature parts. Attempt to skin the creatures you slay in battle. You can either type in the SKIN command or click on the creature in StormFront and select the skin option from the menu. You should be able to sell the pelts and skins you gain at the local furrier. Skinning a creature can take some skill and practice. It's rumored that a sharp weapon and skill training will help in your success.

Skins are nice and all but what about treasure?! You will want to search the creatures you have slain to see what valuables they might carry. If you find something, don't forget to get it off the ground! Command entry users should use the commands SEARCH <creature> and GET <item>.

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Managing your inventory.

When you start the game, you will be issued some very basic gear such as light armor, a couple containers, and items for combat. The longer you play, the more items you will acquire. It's important to be careful with all your hard earned stuff so you don't lose anything!

All of your inventory can be managed with either typing in commands, or clicking on the items and selecting the option you want from the StormFront menu that pops up.

To put something on, like a cloak or backpack, you want to wear it. If you want to take something off, remove it.

If you want to see what is in one of your containers, you can look inside it (or type LOOK IN MY POUCH, for example. If you have two pouches, you need to specify which one. You can do that with either naming it, such as a red pouch or a blue pouch, or by number, such as SECOND pouch. Of course, if you are clicking links there is no question as to which container you mean.).

Command Entry Users

If you want to put something away with typed commands, always specify that you want to put it away in your container. You do this with using MY. If you don't use MY, you can end up putting your item in a similar container on the ground or accidentally dropping it. If items are lost this way, they are usually not replaced. To put your sword in your sheath type PUT MY SWORD IN MY SHEATH.

The STOW, SHEATHE, and UNSHEATHE commands are very useful. You can type them alone to see usage information.

 

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StormFront starter tips.

The input bar at the bottom of your screen can be toggled between Chat and Command modes. When you first start, you will be in Chat mode. This means that everything you type in will show on the game screen as your character saying it. Then you can use point and click to issue all your game commands.

You might prefer to either type all your commands, or use a combination of both typing and point and click. In that case, you will want to be in Command mode. In Command mode, anything you type is seen as a command, unless you put SAY or a ' in front of what you type. You can toggle between Command and Chat modes using the button to the left of the input bar.

If you click on Options and then Macros, you will see a list of pre-set key combinations, some of which toggle various StormFront options on and off. If some of the features don't suit your tastes or you find that all the P&C (point and click) underlined words makes things confusing, you can toggle these features off to play in a manner that suits your personal style. You can also add your own macro combinations for tasks that you frequently carry out.

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What next? Other sources of information.

The Game. You will find a good bit of information inside the game itself. Most of the commands available are based on common sense. If you think you could do THIS to THAT, it's quite likely that you can, just try it as long as it doesn't sound too dangerous. Just because the option for it is on a menu, doesn't mean it is safe. Command entry users can enter in any command they dream up, and if it sounds dangerous and deadly, for instance GO CHASM or KISS LAVA, it probably is!

The Players. If you can't figure it out on your own, ask someone else! Most players are glad to help out, especially if you're polite about it. One tip, if you have a question about a command or the way something works, use the whisper menu option shown when you click on another player. Type the phrase or question you want to whisper into the whisper dialogue box and click OK. This allows you to ask technical questions without breaking the mood of the game for others.

The Website. You can get much more elaborate and detailed information by digging through the information section of our website. Many of the more complex systems of the game are described therein.

The Forums. We maintain a large set of forums where players can ask questions, discuss game mechanics, plan hunts, talk about recent events and much more. Check them out!

The Player Websites. Many of the players maintain their own web sites full of advice, opinions and game information. While these are unofficial, you'll find all kinds of maps, strategies and lore to help you along the way.

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Simutronics Corporation

Go Play!