The current state of DDO has plenty of ways for our characters to gain experience and to level up. The primary method for gaining experience is by completing quests, of course, but we can also gain additional experience by turning in saga awards, using experience potions, using a guild experience shrine or amenity, from daily and weekly dice rolls, hitting monster manual deeds, and bravery streaks. When the game first came out, all of these sources of gaining experience or boosting your experience award when you completed a quest wasn’t available. The times have definitely changed, that is for sure 🙂 !!
Containment hunting in the Tangleroot Gorge Wilderness Area.
But this is a good thing because a main focus for many players in DDO is run through the various forms reincarnations, whether it be a true heroic, iconic, or epic reincarnations, which requires DDO players to gain as much experience as possible to hit level 20 or level 28 so that we can start the process over again to gain more powerful abilities through past life feats. However, as this has become more and more prominent, many players have developed their own method to re-level their characters in the most efficient manner possible, running the highest experience quest per minute, to move through lives as quickly as possible to get that next life completed and move to the next one. In many cases, “paths” such as these will by pass a number of interesting quests, that don’t give out as much experience, but are still fun and intriguing to run. I don’t typically follow a pattern of running the highest experience quest per minute, instead I tend to just open up the quest Compendium and tend to hit the next lowest level quest along the line, typically bypassing raids. In many cases, it seems that players tend to skip a valuable source of experience when they develop their circuit of experience runs. This source of experience is from the various Wilderness Areas.
The various Wilderness Areas span from level 1 (Korthos Island) to level 29 (Epic Orchard of the Macabre and The Ruins of Thunderholme). Many people feel that these areas don’t tend to have a good “experience per minute” yield but I tend to disagree with that. In many instances these areas can be large sources of experience. Wilderness zones tend to have three ways to gain experience: locating explorer points or finding hidden messages, killing rare encounters, and reaching slayer marks (there are some Wilderness zones that don’t stick to all of these, like Waterworks which doesn’t have explorer points but that is the exception as opposed to the norm). So, if you establish an efficient path that allows you to pick up the explorer points, come across as many rare encounters as possible, and collecting slayers along the way you can net a pretty impressive amount of experience in a relatively short time frame, especially during your first time or two in the explorer area.
One of the things I tend to do with my with characters, whether or not they are going through the reincarnation train, is to move them through the Wilderness zones at level. Sometimes I’m not very good at it, but I like to keep my characters within in a level or two of Wilderness zones they are working on. I have found that some of the more productive Wilderness zones at level include Searing Heights, Sorrowdusk Isle, Ataraxia’s Haven, Sands of Menechtarun, Ruins of Gianthold, Orchard of Macabre, Wheloon Prison, and the Vale of Twilight. Usually by the time I’m entering Gianthold, my characters are close to level 20. I really haven’t had a chance to check out the Eveningstar Wilderness areas (Kingforest, Thunderholme, High Road, The Underdark, Sschindylryn, Demonweb, and Storm Horns) all that much but I know you can get quite a bit of experience out of these, I just haven’t set up an efficient route in these areas yet.
Lorrikk making his way through the Sorrowdusk Wilderness area.
In any case, I just wanted to remind folks to not forget about these fun areas when you are working on leveling your characters. Another thing to keep in mind as well is that a number of these areas also have monsters that are tallied up in the monster manual volumes allowing you to earn even more experience and to obtain other rewards as well. I find it very interesting to see the large number of monster manual deeds I obtain without really focusing on them as I make my way through these areas.
Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting in the large number of Wilderness zones in DDO :)!!