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<big>'''Welcome to Elanthia'''</big>.  This guide is written to aid a new character in joining [[GemStone IV]], and will be heavily linked in order to give the most information in as little text as possible, allowing for the new player to chose which topics interest him or her the most. 
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<span style="font-size: larger">'''Welcome to Elanthia'''</span>.  This guide is intended to aid a new player in joining [[GemStone IV]].
{{TOCright}}
 
= New Character Creation =
 
Everyone must start here.  It is more important than knowing the [[verb]]s that exist, because, in order to even log into the GemStone universe and use the verbs, you still must first create a character.  [http://www.play.net/gs4/info/quickstart.asp Play.net] gives a very basic process in creating a character, but gives little insight as to what those choices will mean.  Creating a character involves a few basic steps and choices that will affect a character throughout his career.
 
  
First, when you log in on [http://www.play.net/gs4/ www.play.net] you will be given two choices -- ''Choose a character to play'' and ''Select client''.  The first choice will be to ''Create a new character''.  The second choice gives 3 choices, though it lists 4.  These are ''StormFront'', ''eScape'', ''Wizard'', and ''Java''.  Likely the best choice for a new character is [[StormFront]], however, this client does need to be downloaded.  In any case, when making a character this choice is irrelevant until the character is created.  When a choice is made, hit the orange button labelled, "Create Character."
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[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cWsaAETt4dM Introductory YouTube video by Lord Whirlin]
  
=== Gender ===
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''This is an updated version of the old play.net Gemstone IV New Player Guide, with credits to the original author(s).''
The first step would be to chose a gender. Both genders are equal mechanically, so the choice of gender is solely a [[roleplay]]ing choice.  Click on the image of the gender you prefer.
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{{TOC limit}}
  
=== Profession ===
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==What is GemStone IV?==
Next, the character chooses a [[profession]]. A profession is a very important choice as it decides which role your character will play in the world of [[Elanthia]]. 
 
  
*[[Bard]]s use music combined with [[elemental]] and mental magics to enhance themselves, their party, and defeat their enemies. Bards are skilled in [[Loresinging]], a skill which can reveal the properties of magical items to a higher degree of accuracy than any other system.
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GemStone IV is unique. The longest-running text-based game in the industry, it boasts hundreds of users online at any given time. What defines GemStone is a close-knit community, some members of which have been adventuring in Elanthia for well over a decade.
  
*[[Cleric]]s focus only on spiritual magic and are very strong against the [[undead]] - though less so if the cleric is aligned to a dark god, known as [[Lornon]] [[Arkati]] in Elanthia.  Clerics are capable of bringing dead characters [[Raise Dead (318)|back to life]].
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The [[Elanthia|World of Elanthia]] is one of contrasts and conflict, a constantly shifting landscape of light and darkness, where everyone must work together, or find the courage to stand-alone. For players new and old, the world is constantly changing and growing.
  
*[[Empath]]s are the only profession with spells related to healing other characters. They also use [[mental]] and [[spiritual]] magic to be formidable fighters.
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With over fifty thousand locations to explore, hundreds of creatures and puzzles, and a vast array of fully customizable items, GemStone IV is a behemoth of an experience.
  
*[[Monk]]s are experts in unarmed combat, preferring to use their bare hands and feet to combat their foes. They use mental magic to aid their fists and allow them to wear light armor or none at all.
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===You and Your Character===
  
*[[Paladin]]s are adept physical warriors with access to spiritual magic. Paladins are the only profession capable of wearing heavy armor and still be able to cast spells effectively.
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As you experience Elanthia, you do it through the eyes of your character, whose actions, thoughts, and motivations you ultimately control. The fate of your character and those around will frequently be in your hands. When conflicts rise, your character's life and reputation hang in the balance of your decisions.
  
*[[Ranger]]s are lovers of the outdoors and have many spiritual magics related to that love. They are quite capable of [[foraging]] and they can imbue various elemental and natural resistances to non-metallic armor. 
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===Roleplaying===
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{{main|Roleplay}}
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:''[[The Art of Roleplaying in GemStone IV (guide)|Guide: The Art of Roleplaying in GemStone IV]]''
  
*[[Rogue]]s are skilled at [[stealth mode|stealth]] combat and [[locksmith]]ing, though some rogues neglect these skills in favor of increased combat or magical abilities.  
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Your character knows nothing outside the world in which they exist. While Elanthia has many similarities to our reality, within its confines is a different universe. The setting is a collage of periods that blend into a medieval reality where magic and technology meet to clash or create.
  
*[[Sorcerer]]s use both [[elemental]] and [[spiritual]] magic, and use them to perform what some would consider the darker arts: sorcery. Their powerful spells include demon summoning, necromancy, and various effects drawn from the two.
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This effectively means that the things your character says or does should stay true to its nature and that of the world. Discussing things that are not in the genre or generally not something that characters in this world would do or know is beyond the intent of the game. The staff does enforce this and will take measures to ensure that characters' roles and actions stay true to the game world.
  
*[[Warrior]]s are skilled in martial skills, fighting opponents in open combat with a fury unmatched by any other profession, though their access to magic is more limited than any other profession. Warriors can take physical punishment better than any other profession.
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===Rooms, Creatures, NPCs, and Items===
  
*[[Wizard]]s are masters of elemental magic and are capable of crafting many [[magical item]]s, including permanent [[enchant]]ment bonuses to weapons, armor, and shields.
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GemStone IV is a realm of [[room]]s, each of which signifies a specific location. Your character will always be in a room, though you can move to new rooms through any exits in that room. Those exits could be as simple as heading north or south, or as complicated as sneaking through a hidden grate in an empty fireplace.
  
=== Race ===
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The myriad of [[creature]]s that call Elanthia their home are as diverse as the adventurers who battle them. Creatures exist with their own motivations. Some are friends; others are foes, and many are wild beasts living on instinct beyond the borders of civilization. Still others are controlled by the dark forces of the world, amassing and attacking cities or towns in invasions that can scale from a small skirmish to epic battles with armies fit to end civilization.
A character's [[race]] is less important to the character's career than their profession, however, a race will have a dramatic effect on the roleplaying opportunities that character possesses. For example, the [[dark elf|dark elves]] are shunned by their light skin cousins and therefore are denied access to certain locations within the [[Elven Empire]].  Also, various statistic bonuses each race possesses make them more suited for certain professions.
 
  
=== Culture ===
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When in conflict, you can arm yourself with literally thousands of different weapons, armors, shields, and magical artifacts to aid you on your path. These items are often fully customizable, from their descriptions down to potent abilities. There are hundreds of [[:Category:Events|events]] and staff-controlled [[NPC]]s--non-player characters--who visit on a consistent basis to provide players with a [[:Category:Merchant Services|multitude of services]].
A culture choice should be made when the player is more informed of what role each culture plays within Elanthia. If a character selects "none" for culture, the choice can be made at a later date. As a new player to GemStone IV, it is recommended to chose "none" for now.
 
  
=== Appearance ===
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==Creating Your Character==
The [[appearance]] of your character is decided next. These choices can, however, be changed in the future via various tents within the cities of Elanthia or by a GameMaster run non-player character that specializes in modifying a character's features. You can choose your age, complexion, distinguish mark, eye color, face style, hair color, height, nose style. Some special items also provide a unique feature.
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{{main|Character creation}}
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If you have not done so, you will need to create a GemStone IV account. To sign up for a new account: http://www.play.net/gs4/
  
=== Stats ===
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A [[F2P subscription|free to play]] account has no restrictions on travel or character advancement, but some features like item storage and casting spells on other characters are disabled or limited. You can purchase passes to lift these limits temporarily, or upgrade at any time from a free account to a monthly subscription which permanently unlocks all features.
The [[statistics]] of a character will follow that character for the rest of his/her career, so balancing your stat allocation is very important to get right.  Statistics have wide-reaching effects, and the mathematics involved are not entirely trivial. As the stats can be re-assigned up to five times within the first 30 days of creating a character with no penalty, the best thing to do is to make a reasonably informed attempt at assigning your statistics and start playing!  However, do not forget to finally investigate the effects of all the statistics and place yours to values you can live with for the rest of your career before the first thirty days are up!  Although it is possible to alter your stats after the first thirty days (with a 'fixstat' potion), these are expensive and difficult to acquire.  You probably want to consult experienced players for the final decisions.
 
  
====Stat Growth====
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Once you have an account, you will be able to do several things: post on and read the forums, view important announcements about Elanthia, and most importantly, log in to the game!
Each time a character attains a new level, each statistic may increase (up to a maximum of 100).  This [[statistic growth rate]] is primarily determined by the statistic itself, the professional growth rate for each statistic, and a small racial statistical growth modifier.  However, for the purposes of new players and simplicity, we largely omit discussion of statistical growth here.  The reason for the omission is that statistical growth mainly becomes important as a character reaches higher levels, which will not happen in the first 30 days.  However, for the final statistical assignment at the end of the 30 days, growth rates should be considered in some detail.  The topic is so complex that nearly all players, even the most experienced ones, use a computer program to assist in these calculations (usually called a 'stat cruncher').  Please keep these points in mind after creating the character before the final assignments and research the topic more thoroughly in the mean time.
 
  
====Stat Bonuses====
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After you sign in to your account, you will be given two choices: "Choose a character to play" and "Select client". The first choice will be to Create a new character. The second choice gives 3 choices, though it lists 4. These are [[StormFront]], [[Wizard (front end)|Wizard]], Web Client, and Java. Likely the best choice for a new player is StormFront, which you will need to download from the site. When a choice is made, hit the orange button labelled "Create Character."
Statistics have mainly two components: the raw statistics itself (the <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">stat</span>) and the statistical bonus (the <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">bonus</span>). Nominally, the statistical bonus is calculated as <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">bonus</span>=(<span style = "font-variant: small-caps">stat</span>-50)/2; this <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">bonus</span> is then modified (positively or negatively) by the racial bonus modifier giving the final <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">bonus</span>. Racial selection does not directly affect the raw <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">stat</span> itself. Some systems use the <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">stat</span> value while others use the <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">bonus</span> value.
 
  
The base-value of a <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">stat</span> itself can range from a minimum of 20 to a maximum of 100; there are possible ways within the game to go lower and higher than these numbers (e.g. if you died, the <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">stat</span> may temporarily decrease, or if you have a special magical item called an 'enhacive', it might increase further beyond its normal value even past 100).  In any case, considering the <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">stat</span> range of 20 to 100, this means the nominal <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">bonus</span> ranges from -15 to +25.  (Plug the values of <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">stat</span>=20 and <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">stat</span>=100 to the above <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">bonus</span> equation.)  This base range for the <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">bonus</span> puts the racial <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">bonus</span> modifiers range from -15 to +15 into context.  That is to say, if one selected the minimum <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">stat</span> (20 corresponding to a bonus of -15) and the racial modifier for that stat was the worst possible (-15), the final <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">bonus</span> could be as low as -30, a very horrible number.  Conversely, if one selected the maximum <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">stat</span> (100 corresponding to a bonus of +25) and the racial modifier for that stat was the best possible (+15), the final <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">bonus</span> could be as high as +40, an extremely good value. 
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===Profession===
  
Because a character cannot allocate the <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">stat</span> of 100 to each of the 10 statistics, one then tries to balance their gains with their losses.  Let's consider the example of a [[halfling]] and the statistics of [[Constitution]] ('<span style = "font-variant: small-caps">con</span>') and [[Strength]] ('<span style = "font-variant: small-caps">str</span>').  Halflings have a +10 to <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">con</span> and a -15 to <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">str</span>; that is, they have among the best bonus to <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">con</span> and among the worst penalty to <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">str</span>. Even a <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">stat</span> of 100 in <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">str</span>, the halfling can only have a total <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">bonus</span> of +10 to <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">str</span> (25-15=10); on the other hand, placing a mid-line value of 50 for the <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">con</span> <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">stat</span> results also in a final <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">bonus</span> of +10 to <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">con</span> (0+10=10).  It is easy to see in this example the enormous effect of how statistics couple with racial selection, since despite showing a 50 point difference in the allocation to two example <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">stats</span> resulted in identical <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">bonuses</span>!  The example is not meant to imply that the best decision would be to put higher values in all the <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">stats</span> where their race has a negative <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">bonus</span> and vice versa; however, it does show the concept of applying some balance in the assignments.
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Your character's [[profession]] is his or her special job in Elanthia, and largely defines the skills and specialties available to you during your time in Elanthia. Although your profession does not directly dictate your roleplay, there are some abilities that only certain professions can access. Alchemy, for example, is limited to Clerics, Empaths, Sorcerers, and Wizards, while certain Combat Maneuvers are only usable by Rogues or Warriors.
  
====What stats do====
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====Melee====
  
The most important factor in allocating the statistics is of course what the individual statistic do.  The chosen profession and intended career path greatly influence which statistics a given character will need to be good at, and which statistics may be of less importance!  One effect of the <span style = "font-variant: small-caps">str</span> statistics is to finally determine the character's physical [[Attack Strength]] with a [[melee]] weapon; for a warrior swinging a sword, this is quite important; for a wizard planning to cast spells, it may be irrelevant.  Strength also affects [[encumbrance]], which can generally be considered important for all characters.  Below is a table summarizing the basic aspects of all the stats; readers are encouraged to find more details on the individual statistic pages.
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*[[Monk]]
*Statistic: Which statistic is discussed.
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*[[Rogue]]
*Type: Which general category the statistic is classified under.
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*[[Warrior]]
*Prime: Which professions the statistics is considered a Prime Requisite.
 
*Main systems: A selection of some important systems the statistic effects; it is not fully inclusive.
 
  
{{What Stats Do Table}}
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====Magic====
  
====Training points====
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*[[Cleric]]
A character's statistics directly determines the number of [[training point]]s available, which in turn affects how many skills they can train.  The calculation is identical for all professions, except that the Prime Requisite statistics for a profession are multiplied by 2 in the formula.  A statistic's Type determines whether it affects Physical training points, Mental training points, or both.
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*[[Empath]]
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*[[Sorcerer]]
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*[[Wizard]]
  
=== Skills ===
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====Hybrid====
Choosing [[skill|skills]] will determine how your character performs in combat or performing various other tasks such as [[Disarming Traps|disarming traps]], [[Picking Locks|picking locks]], [[foraging]], [[trading]], [[skin]]ning, and more.  The amount of skills a character can chose is determined by their stats, which determines how many [[training point]]s a character gets.  Generally, the more training points, the better, however, generally having a high number of training points at low levels means that your stats will not grow as much as someone who willingly sacrifices the extra training points.
 
  
=== Name ===
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*[[Bard]]
A character's name should be fitting for a medieval setting.  It must be unique, and the name database has rarely been purged in the game's more than twenty year history, meaning many of your first attempts at selecting a name may report the name is already taken.  Your selected name identifies your character within the game, is shown automatically to other players, and can never be changed without creating a new character ([[Last_chance_inn_(saved_post)|unless your name is especially out-of-genre]]).  The naming system will also reject names with sequences of vowels or consonants that are too long, since the idea is the name should be pronounceable and not gibberish.  Long or short, use your imagination to create something memorable you can identify with!
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*[[Paladin]]
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*[[Ranger]]
  
= Getting Started =
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====Profession Bonuses====
After creating your character you can choose to start out in one of three cities: the frontier town of [[Wehnimer's Landing]], the snowy tundra of [[Icemule Trace]], or the shining elven city [[Ta'Vaalor]]. Each of these cities as its own guide with specific locations, while this guide will generally introduce you to navigating the Gemstone universe.
 
  
*[[A beginner's guide to Wehnimer's Landing]]
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Professions also provide enhancements to a character's attributes bonuses. These are referenced in more detail on the individual professions' pages.
*[[A beginner's guide to Icemule Trace]]
 
*[[A beginner's guide to Ta'Vaalor]]
 
  
==The First Level==
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===Choosing a Race===
  
Your first task as an adventurer is to learn the lay of the land. Explore your town using [[DIRECTIONS]] to find the key shops and places of interest. Every town will have some places for you to buy gear, sell treasure, get healed, and interact with fellow adventurers. Once you have explored all the town highlights you will have learned enough to advance to your first training.
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Your character's [[race]] heavily affects your roleplay, as well as the mechanical strengths and weaknesses of your character. Each race is distinct and has its own unique history. While your profession affects the cost and availability of skills, race will directly affect your statistics, and therefore the number of training points you can use to spend on skills.
  
==The First Few Levels==
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*[[Human]]
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*[[Giantman]]
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*[[Half-Krolvin]]
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*[[Dark Elf]]
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*[[Elf]]
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*[[Half-Elf]]
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*[[Sylvankind]]
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*[[Burghal Gnome]]
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*[[Dwarf]]
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*[[Forest Gnome]]
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*[[Halfling]]
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*[[Aelotoi]]
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*[[Erithian]]
  
Now that you know where to go, the adventure begins! You start with some basic equipment, and must pay off the initial debt to the town. For your first three levels you are eligible to deliver messages between certain townspeople. These tasks will reward you with [[experience]] and [[silver]] while not requiring you to leave the safety of the town gates, and will familiarize yourself with the town's layout as well. Each starting town will also have a few low-level hunting areas for you to engage in basic combat. Review your profession guide for basic combat strategy, but do not forget to [[LOOT]] your kills. Each town will have a furrier, gemshop, and pawnshop for your basic [[treasure]]. If you find something curious or unique, you can take it these merchants and [[APPRAISE]] its value. You can [[MARK]] items you do not want to sell as unsellable and store them in your [[locker]]. More intelligent creatures carry [[box (treasure)|chests]] that can opened for a fee from the local locksmith or by a talented fellow adventurer. You should deposit your earnings in the local [[bank]] for safe keeping. Each town has a popular gathering spot (or spots) for adventurers not on the hunt, usually at a [[super node]]. 
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====Racial Attributes====
  
==Etiquette==
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All races have their strengths and weaknesses, but certain races possess extraordinary bonuses that make them well suited to particular professions. Giantmen, Dwarves, and Half-Krolvin, for example, make excellent Warriors due to their high Strength and Constitution. The exceptional Dexterity of Halflings makes them extraordinary as Wizards. Dark Elves are gifted with magic in general, reflected by their enhanced Wisdom and Aura.
Elanthia is a community, and as such, you will do better if you observe a few rules of behavior. In addition to the tips below, each town has a NPC that dispenses more helpful advice (and sitting through their speech will earn you some extra experience).
 
  
Do not yell or say the same thing over and over again. Do not perform the same action over and over again, either. This behavior may gain you some attention, but it will not be friendly attention. If you need help, ask once or twice. If no one hears you, find another area and ask someone else.  When all else fails, remember that you can always go to [[Silverwood Manor]] and ring the bell. Someone will hear your call and if available, come to assist you.
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It is possible for most races to do well at any given profession, yet some will find an easier path than others.
  
When hunting, do not swing or cast at a creature if someone is already engaged in battle. If you are both hunting alone, you can ask the person to join you, and you can hunt together. You will both gain experience (in fact there is a small bonus for being in a [[group]]), you will share in the loot, and you may find a new friend this way!
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====Pitfalls====
  
When engaging in conversation, it is best to speak about [[roleplay|things specific to Elanthia]]. Do not speak about last night's baseball game or about your upcoming job interview. If you must speak to someone in an [[OOC]] (out of character) manner you should [[WHISPER]] to the person so that your conversation is not disruptive to others who may be listening. In addition, you can let the other person know that you are speaking out-of-character by WHISPERing OOC to them.
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Because GemStone is a roleplaying game, your chosen race can carry some stigma that will affect your playing experience. Dark Elves are widely loathed in most cities, and may meet with higher shop prices in the West, or complete exclusion from some services in the Elven Nations. Halfling players, in turn, may be snubbed by Dark Elves who view them as frippery (or worse, lunch.) In Human-controlled lands, most other races are viewed with some level and variety of disdain.
  
Finally there is a more formal system for dealing with disruptive behavior (either yours or others). The [[justice]] system details the charge, arrest, and punishment system for each town. However this system is infrequently used and only as a measure of last resort.
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====Cultures====
  
==Further Exploration==
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Races also feature subsets known as [[culture]]s. Some races are homogeneous: for example the professions of one's ancestors largely determine Aelotoi cultures. Other cultures often feature surprising variety. A Human of the [[Tehir]] clans comes from a vastly different lifestyle than one from [[Hendor]] or elsewhere in the [[Turamzzyrian Empire]]. You are encouraged to examine the different cultures before choosing one. While you do not need to choose your character's culture right away, the selection is permanent once completed.
  
With a few levels under your belt you can start to explore more of what Elanthia has to offer. You will start out with some basic gear, including a weapon and armor based on your initial training and some basic containers. Your starting town will have a variety of NPC shops that sell stock gear, as well as a few [[player run shop]]s that sell more unique and powerful items. Occasionally travelling [[merchant]]s will visit town or [[festival]]s will occur, providing access to new or limited items. Some web sites also host sales for players without in-game shops. You can customize your character's gear as you see fit - the possibilities are endless! Remember as you progress in training that you can use [[enchant]]ed weapons and armor at twice your level (e.g., you can use a +10 item at level five).
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====Rerolling====
  
Each town will have a branch of the [[Adventurer's Guild]], the surest way to earn experience and only source of [[bounty points]]. The local taskmaster can assign a variety of jobs, from slaying particularly dangerous creatures to collecting certain herbs to rescuing lost children. Do not worry, though, the taskmaster will only assign jobs relative to your level.
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Race and profession are permanent features of your character. Starting out is not easy for any profession, and frequently class-defining skills will take some time and leveling to develop. If you are certain that you are dissatisfied with either your race or profession and wish to change, you may reroll your character at the nearest inn.
  
Eventually your adventurers will lead you to a more powerful foe, and you will die. With luck, a friend or some kind stranger will find you and drag your dead body to those who can heal you and then restore your life. [[Cleric]]s and [[empath]]s often keep a watch for fallen adventurers and can rescue and heal them with the right training. In order to minimize the [[death's sting]] you should look into getting some [[deed]]s from the Goddess Lorminstra. Any adventurer you find will know how to point you in the right direction to obtain them. Or, you can explore your town and research the mysteries for yourself.
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Rerolling is not a choice to be taken lightly. Your character is essentially reset, starting from zero, and you will have to begin anew.
  
=Societies=
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===Customizing Your Appearance===
  
At level three every adventurer is eligible to pledge for one of three [[societies]]. Each society has its own method for advancement and grants their members some bonuses to [[Attack Strength|AS]], [[Defensive Strength|DS]] and [[Target Defense|TD]] in addition to other unique abilities. While some societies are a better fit for certain professions than others, everyone will benefit from mastering a society. You are only able to switch societies once (for free), so be sure to investigate each society and choose carefully. Here is a brief summary of some of the highlights and pitfalls of each society:
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:''Guide: [[Character guide|Character customization]]''
  
'''The [[Order of Voln]]''' is dedicated to purging the scourge of the [[Undead|minions]] of [[Luukos]] from the lands. The maximum benefits to AS and DS are +26 against all opponents, with an additional +13 AS and [[Casting strength|CS]] against undead and a maximum TD benefit of +13 against all foes. Voln members also have the abilities to [[Symbol of Blessing|bless weapons]] and [[Symbol of Return|transport their entire group]] to a safe location when in mortal danger. However, using the abilities from the Order of Voln costs [[favor]], which must be gained by killing the undead. This requirement can be troublesome for those who do not enjoy hunting the undead (e.g., ranged snipers, since the undead are generally very perceptive and are often [[puncture]] resistant) and due to the absence of undead creatures in certain level ranges.  
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Many combinations of features are available to your character. Some of these features are available to everyone; others, like pointed ears, are limited to certain races. You can have the character manager assign you a random set of features if they are unimportant to you.
  
'''The [[Council of Light]]''' is a society about which one can say very little. Membership is considered an in-game secret with [[Council of Light#Breaking the Oath|penalties]] for violating this oath. However, the benefits of membership include [[Sign of Wracking|considerable power]]. Advancement requires completing certain tasks each rank.  
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Features are not permanent in GemStone. In addition to pavilions across the game where you can select new basic features at any time, there are also merchants called feature alterers who allow access to custom descriptions for your character. Your inventory can be altered in a like fashion.
  
'''The [[Guardians of Sunfist]]''' are devoted to eradicating the [[Grimswarm]]. The maximum benefits to members of this society are relatively modest for AS and DS at +15, but members also receive weighting toward critical hits for attacks and protection from critical hits in defense. Members may also receive a maximum of +20 TD and a maximum of +10 ranks to the [[Climbing]], [[Swimming]] and [[Survival]] skills as well as allowing members to eat healing [[herbs]] quickly, [[Sigil of Determination|ignore the effects]] of minor wounds and [[Sigil of Escape|return to town quickly]] in emergency situations. Members of the Guardians of Sunfist are also able to access [[warcamp]]s, which provide alternative hunting grounds. Using these benefits typically costs members both [[mana]] and [[stamina]]. One major drawback of joining the Guardians of Sunfist is the relatively short duration of the ''sigils''. Young adventurers may find it difficult to pay the cost of maintaining the sigils throughout a hunt while older adventurers may find that their sigils may fall at inconvenient times.
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===Attributes===
  
=See Also=
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{{Side box|width=auto|
* [[Changes to new player drop points (saved post)]]
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'''Attribute/Stat Effects'''
* [[Character guide]]
 
  
= External Links =
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:[[Strength]]: Melee AS, Ranged Speed, Encumbrance
*Play.net's [http://www.play.net/gs4/info/quickstart.asp Quickstart Guide]
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:[[Constitution]]: Max Health, Encumbrance
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:[[Dexterity]]: Ranged AS, Melee Speed
 +
:[[Agility]]: Melee Speed, DS
 +
:[[Discipline]]: Experience Pool
 +
:[[Aura]]: Elemental CS/TD, Max Spirit
 +
:[[Logic]]: Experience Pool/Absorption, Mental CS
 +
:[[Intuition]]: Locksmithing
 +
:[[Wisdom]]: Spiritual CS/TD
 +
:[[Influence]]: Trading
 +
}}
 +
 
 +
[[Statistic|Attributes]], or 'stats', are the mechanical lifeblood of your character. Unlike skills, which are selected and purchased with training points, attributes define your character. They are set only once, during character creation, and grow throughout the life of your character.
 +
 
 +
The mathematically minded may want to spend time reading documentation and seeking the 'perfect' combination of stats for their character, but the average player will have little trouble using the auto-assigned attributes available through the character creation system.
 +
 
 +
After attributes are assigned, they are modified by and will grow differently according to your profession and race.
 +
 
 +
Attributes, also, are largely permanent, and after your first 20 levels it will not be possible to change them without rerolling your character or using a very expensive '[[fixstats]]' potion.
 +
 
 +
===Skills and Training===
 +
 
 +
[[Skill]] training allows you to set your unique mark upon a character. Although the skills you train in are integral to your character's makeup, what you train in is less important than being consistent in your choices. Dabbling in a skill here and there in GemStone IV is much the same as doing so in the real world: you will end up with mediocre abilities in many subjects, but without mastery of anything.
 +
 
 +
====Training====
 +
 
 +
In Elanthia, it is essential that your character pushes forward and masters skills, as your foes will certainly be doing so. Some skills, like Climbing and Swimming, will provide only a negligible bonus if trained past a certain point. Others, like Spell Aiming for Wizards and Weapons Training for non-casters, are lifetime investments.
 +
 
 +
GemStone IV is unusual in that skills are not always purchased immediately as a character gains a [[level]]. [[Training point]]s toward your character's next level are accrued as your character earns experience, allowing you to get a leg up on skills for the next level.
 +
 
 +
Skills can be trained by checking into an inn or by using the {{mono|[[GOALS]]}} command.
 +
 
 +
====Class Comfort====
 +
 
 +
Some skills are essential for a given profession, and as such can (and should) be trained more than one time a level. A Sorcerer would be lax in training with only a single jaunt into Spell Research each level, but might not want to indulge in Shield Use at all. In contrast, a Warrior would be foolish to expend too much effort in learning spells while forsaking Shield training.
 +
 
 +
Certain skills that your profession is comfortable with may not suit your personal playing style. As playing style is a completely subjective medium, it would be wise to consult with a Mentor, your profession page, or experienced players before making precipitous decisions about your skill training.
 +
 
 +
====Retraining====
 +
 
 +
Normally, skills are difficult to untrain once you have selected them. Small changes in skills can be accomplished in a matter of hours, but forgetting an entire skill might take weeks or months to manage. GemStone IV is not without leeway for new players. During your first 20 levels, you can make instant changes to your skills at any time. This allows you to explore a wide variety of skillsets as a new player before finally settling on your chosen path.
 +
 
 +
Furthermore, during the [[Festival of Oleani]] each Spring, a [[FIXSKILLS]] is granted to characters on paying accounts. Using the fixskills verb will allow you to instantly align your actual skills with your skill goals. This allows you to repair any major mistakes in your training, or to choose a new path entirely.  (Fixskills potions are also available for purchase in the [[Simucoin Store]] and the [[Adventurer's Guild]].)
 +
 
 +
====What's In a Name?====
 +
 
 +
At the end of the character creation process, you will be asked to name your character. Characters names should be original and in keeping with a fantasy environment. Keep in mind that science fiction is not fantasy, and as such, names like Robocop and Jeanlucpicard may earn you a mandatory name change as well as some strange looks.
 +
 
 +
==Interacting with the World==
 +
 
 +
Interacting with The World of Elanthia is done through use of [[verb|command]]s. GemStone is accessed through StormFront, a program that interprets the vast game world, featuring point-and-click options, web links, and many other powerful features.
 +
 
 +
Text in {{mono|TELETYPE}} indicates a command that can be typed and text in {{stormfront link|"quotes"}} indicates a link in StormFront that can be clicked (see below).
 +
 
 +
[[File:Stormfront_example.gif|frame|none|StormFront Link]]
 +
 
 +
[[File:Window.gif|frame|none|The "Windows" Window]]
 +
 
 +
If a window in StormFront is mentioned that you don't seem to have open, find the "Windows" window (which you cannot close) and make sure that the eye icon to the left of the window you want to have visible is open. An open eye is black, and a closed eye is white.
 +
Most commands explain how to use themselves if you type them. For example, typing {{mono|WHISPER}} by itself will tell you everything you want to know about using whispers.
 +
 
 +
All StormFront users begin in Chat Mode, where anything typed into the black command bar comes out as something the character says. If you want to switch to Command Mode so you can type commands like {{mono|LOOK}} or {{mono|DIR}}, click the gray chat bubble just to the left of the command bar. Confirm the window that pops up, and the chat bubble will change to a > sign, which you can click again to switch back to Chat Mode later.
 +
 
 +
{|
 +
|[[File:Chat_mode.gif|frame|none|StormFront in Chat mode]]
 +
|[[File:Command_mode.gif|frame|none|StormFront in Command mode]]
 +
|}
 +
 
 +
===Movement and Awareness===
 +
 
 +
First and most importantly, some basic commands for figuring out where you are and how to get elsewhere.
 +
 
 +
{{mono|LOOK}} gives a room's description, items, creatures and NPCs (Non-Player Characters), and obvious exits. To use this command, either click the "look" button in the menu immediately above the command bar (where your typed text is being entered) or type {{mono|LOOK}}. Your current room appears automatically in StormFront's Room window.
 +
 
 +
{{mono|DIR}} (directions), gives directions to common places in any of the starting cities. Click the "directions" button in the menu just above the command bar and then click on the place you want to go, or type {{mono|DIR}} [place] [number of steps you want shown].
 +
 
 +
In cases where you want to use exits that aren't obvious like gates or doors, click on the {{stormfront link|"name of the exit link"}} in the room description and then click "go". You can also type {{mono|GO}} [portal].
 +
 
 +
You can go in any obvious direction by either clicking or typing that direction. If you want to move northeast, click {{stormfront link|"northeast"}}, type {{mono|NE}}, or use your 9-key number pad. In addition any obvious exits in the room will be automatically highlighted for you on the compass in the bottom right corner of StormFront.
 +
 
 +
{|
 +
|-
 +
|[[File:Look.gif|frame|none|The Look Button]]
 +
|[[File:Directions.gif|frame|none|The Directions Button]]
 +
|-
 +
|[[File:Dir_ex.gif|frame|none|{{mono|DIR}} Example]]
 +
|[[File:Go_ex.gif|frame|none|{{mono|GO}} Example]]
 +
|- colspan="2"
 +
|align="left"|[[File:Compass.gif|frame|none|The Compass]]
 +
|}
 +
 
 +
===Communication===
 +
 
 +
The ability to communicate is what keeps the world alive. These are a few of the ways to communicate with your fellow players. Keep in mind that you must remain in character when talking out loud or in any area where other players may overhear you.
 +
 
 +
{{mono|SAY}} can be used to say something that everyone in your current room will hear. The syntax is {{mono|SAY}} [message]. This can be abbreviated by using an apostrophe (example: 'Hello there.). If you want to speak to another person in your room, click the {{stormfront link|"character's name link"}}, select "speak to", then type what you want to say to them. They need to be in your room for "speak to" to appear.
 +
 
 +
{{mono|WHISPER}} is used to speak to another character in your current room without anyone else hearing. Click the {{stormfront link|"character's name link"}} and select "whisper to", then type out what you want to whisper. You can also type {{mono|WHISPER}} [person] [message].
 +
 
 +
{{mono|YELL}} can be used to shout something that will be heard by everyone in your current room and all adjacent rooms. The syntax is {{mono|YELL [MESSAGE]}}.
 +
 
 +
{{mono|THINK}} can be used to send out a thought heard by all players in your current realm. You'll need to find and {{mono|RUB}} a crystal amulet to use this. When you first {{mono|RUB}} your amulet, you'll be on the Gray channel. You can think out loud using {{mono|THINK}} [message] (example: {{mono|THINK}} Hello.). Click any {{stormfront link|"character's name link"}} and, if they are within range, click "think to" and then type out what you want to think to them. You can also type {{mono|THINK TO}} [person].
 +
 
 +
{|
 +
|-
 +
|[[File:Say_ex.gif|frame|none|{{mono|SAY}} Example]]
 +
|[[File:Whisper_ex.gif|frame|none|{{mono|WHISPER}} Example]]
 +
|-
 +
|[[File:Yell_ex.gif|frame|none|{{mono|YELL}} Example]]
 +
|[[File:Think_ex.gif|frame|none|{{mono|THINK}} Example]]
 +
|}
 +
 
 +
===Character Information===
 +
 
 +
Your character's basic information is a measure of your advancement in the game world. There are a few important ways to check this information.
 +
 
 +
The easiest way to check all character info is to click the "character sheet" button just above the command bar in StormFront. The window that pops up contains all relevant character data, and there are ways to quickly access different parts of this information through commands.
 +
 
 +
{{mono|EXP}} brings up your experience. Experience is needed to advance your character from one level to the next. {{mono|EXP}} shows your current level along with total experience and how much experience is needed to hit the next level. {{mono|EXP}} also shows your character's training points and deeds, which are covered in a later section.
 +
 
 +
{{mono|INFO}} brings up your stats and character description. Your stats grow as you level and play an important role in how many training points you get when you level up. {{mono|INFO}} also shows your current mana and on-hand silver.
 +
 
 +
{{mono|SKILLS}} brings up your skills and spells, displaying both the ranks you have and the bonus that those ranks give you, which are covered in a later section.
 +
 
 +
[[File:Char_sheet.gif|frame|none|The Character Sheet Button and Window]]
 +
 
 +
===Inventory and Items===
 +
:''Guide: [[Character_guide#Inventory_.26_Item_Management|Item Management]]
 +
 
 +
Your character's inventory and items comprise a significant portion of your character's identity in GemStone IV. Nearly all items are highly customizable, and there are dozens of types.
 +
 
 +
{{mono|INV}} brings up your character's inventory, which includes everything you're wearing and whatever is in your hands. Click the "inventory" button just above the command bar in StormFront to bring this up. There are also several advanced options to the {{mono|INV}} verb that will appear when you use it.
 +
 
 +
{{mono|GET}} allows you to pick up an item, if you have a free hand. Click an {{stormfront link|"item's name link"}} and then drag that item over one of your containers to immediately pick up the item and place it in that container. You can also click an {{stormfront link|"item's name link"}} and then click "get", or type {{mono|GET}} [item].
 +
 
 +
{{mono|PUT}} allows you to place an item from one of your hands into one of your containers. Click an {{stormfront link|"item's name link"}} and then drag that item over a container to place it into the container, or type {{mono|PUT MY [item] IN MY [container]}}.
 +
 
 +
It's important to use the adjective {{mono|MY}} when moving items around your inventory. {{mono|MY}} is used to indicate that the item you're referencing is on your character, which means it will make sure that you're putting your item into one of your containers, not one that may be on the ground or a nearby bench.
 +
 
 +
{{mono|WEAR}} allows you to wear an item that you're holding. Items are automatically worn where they are supposed to be worn in your inventory. Click an {{stormfront link|"item's name link"}} and click "wear", or type {{mono|WEAR [item]}}.
 +
 
 +
{{mono|REMOVE}} allows you to remove an item that you're wearing, if you have a free hand. Click an item and drag it into one of the hand icons in the top left-hand corner of the StormFront window to move the item to that hand. You can also click an {{stormfront link|"item's name link"}} in your inventory and click "remove", or type {{mono|REMOVE MY [item]}}.
 +
 
 +
{|
 +
|-
 +
|[[File:Inventory.gif|frame|none|Inventory Button]]
 +
|[[File:Get_ex.gif|frame|none|{{mono|GET}} Example]]
 +
|-
 +
|[[File:Put_ex.gif|frame|none|{{mono|PUT}} Example]]
 +
|[[File:Wear_ex.gif|frame|none|{{mono|WEAR}} Example]]
 +
|- colspan="2"
 +
|align="left"|[[File:Remove_ex.gif|frame|none|{{mono|REMOVE}} Example]]
 +
|}
 +
 
 +
===Combat Basics===
 +
 
 +
:''[[A beginner's guide to combat|Guide: A beginner's guide to combat]]''
 +
 
 +
[[File:Combat.gif|frame|left|The Combat Window]]
 +
 
 +
The primary way to gain experience and money in the game is by killing other creatures.
 +
 
 +
If you want to attack a creature, you can click on its {{stormfront link|"creature name link"}} and choose "attack", select it from the drop down and click on the "attack" button in StormFront's Combat window, or type {{mono|ATTACK [critter]}}. Typing {{mono|ATTACK}} by itself will automatically cause you to attack the first critter available in a room.
 +
 
 +
You can use the {{mono|STANCE}} command or click the "stance" button in the Combat window to change your stance. The more offensive your stance, the more you'll be focusing on attack over defense. Your AS (Attack Strength) and DS (Defense Strength) are heightened or lowered accordingly.
 +
 
 +
Once a creature is dead, some creatures can be skinned. You can click on a {{stormfront link|"creature's corpse link"}} to see if the "skin" option is available and click that, click on the "skin" button in StormFront's Combat window, or type {{mono|SKIN [critter]}}. Depending on your Survival and First Aid skills, along with your level, this may produce a skin of varying quality, or you may fail to skin the creature entirely.
 +
 
 +
Most creatures can also be searched after they've been killed. Searching a creature will let you find any treasure it may have, including locked boxes, gems, coins, and magical artifacts. You can click on a {{stormfront link|"creature's corpse link"}} and click "search" to search it, click on the "search" button in StormFront's Combat window, or type {{mono|SEARCH [critter]}}.
 +
 
 +
<div style="clear:both;"></div>
 +
{|
 +
|-
 +
|valign="top"|[[File:Attack_ex.gif|frame|none|{{mono|ATTACK}} Example]]
 +
|valign="top"|[[File:Skin_ex.gif|frame|none|{{mono|SKIN}} Example]]
 +
|-
 +
|colspan="2" valign="top"|[[File:Search_ex.gif|frame|none|{{mono|SEARCH}} Example]]
 +
|}
 +
 
 +
==Experience, Levels, and Silver==
 +
 
 +
Other than roleplaying, one of the basic premises of GemStone IV is the acquisition of money and experience. As you gain more of both, your character becomes more powerful by gaining [[level]]s, and coincidentally will be able to afford better equipment and armor. Experience comes in two varieties: field experience and real experience. You will usually gain field experience from your activities in the world of Elanthia. This takes time to 'absorb' and become real experience.
 +
 
 +
===Weapons and Armor===
 +
 
 +
:''Guide to all of Elanthia's [[armor]], [[weapon]]s, and [[material]]s used in their construction''
 +
 
 +
In order to combat the creatures in the encroaching wilderness, adventurers use weapons and armor crafted in the world. There are many different types of weapons and weapon styles, including (but not limited to) standard weapon/shield combinations, the more defensive [[runestaff]] for casters, and even [[Ranged Weapons|bows and crossbows]].
 +
 
 +
====Weapon Shop, Armor Shop, Pawnshop====
 +
 
 +
There are a few basic places where most adventurers go to find weapons, armor, and magical items from non-player vendors. Every major city has a [[:Category: Weapon Shops|weapon shop]], [[:Category: Armor Shops|armor shop]], and [[pawnshop]]. If you're in a starting city, you can use the {{mono|DIR}} command to find these.
 +
 
 +
====Special metals and woods====
 +
 
 +
When you go shopping for new weapons or armor, you may find that some are composed of special materials. These materials directly contribute to how much AS or DS the weapon or armor gives your character. In order to use these, your character's level must equal half of the AS or DS bonus of the item, rounded up.
 +
 
 +
So, for example, an [[ora]] broadsword gives an automatic +10 AS when used to attack something. Your character would need to be level 5 to even pick up or hold this weapon. If you can't pick up a certain weapon or armor, it may be because you aren't high enough level to hold it!
 +
 
 +
The [[Elemental Blade]] spell is a unique magic that gives a weapon a +20 to your AS, and you need to be level 10 to hold items that are e-bladed. These items can be identified by the scintillating light surrounding them when you {{mono|LOOK}} at them.
 +
 
 +
====What kind of weapon and armor should you use?====
 +
 
 +
Starting out, we recommend that you use basic weapons and armor for your first few levels. You can wield [[mithril]] equipment (+5 to AS for weapons; +5 to DS for armor/shields) when you reach level 3, and [[ora]] equipment (+10 to AS for weapons; +10 to DS for armor/shields) when you reach level 5. Most adventurers carry [[vultite]] equipment (+20 to AS for weapons; +20 to DS for armor/shields), which you can hold at level 10, and this is considered to be equipment for experienced players.
 +
 
 +
===Hunting===
 +
 
 +
When players talk about hunting in Elanthia, they're referring to going out and fighting creatures in the areas bordering the major cities. There are hundreds of [[:Category:Hunting Areas|hunting areas]], and the creatures that inhabit them boast a wide range of levels and tricks. New players should try to stick closer to town, as creatures there are relatively weak and geared towards players with lower-level characters.
 +
 
 +
====Experience, Levels, and Training Points====
 +
 
 +
When you kill creatures around your own level, you gain a certain amount of experience for doing so. The GemStone IV experience system is unique in that the experience that you gain is not immediately applied to your total experience. When you're hunting, you will have experience you gain in the field saved in your mind. You must gradually convert the experience in your character's head into real experience that will gain you levels.
 +
 
 +
Every minute, a little of your field experience is converted to real experience. You can only hold so much field experience until you stop gaining field experience, so it's common for adventurers to go out, hunt until their mind can't take anymore, then head back into a city to rest. Certain areas, such as sanctuaries where combat can't take place, provide a boost to how fast you convert field experience to real experience.
 +
 
 +
Your character's skills can be raised by spending training points on those skills. You get more training points every level by having higher character statistics. Every so often, you will gain some training points from your experience earned. You can type the {{mono|GOALS}} command in game to apply these training points to skills and gain ranks in those skills.
 +
 
 +
===Material Wealth and Items===
 +
 
 +
The [[silver coin]] is the main unit of currency in Elanthia. The most common method of making silver is to find it on the bodies of creatures, but you can also find it in [[box]]es or items dropped by those creatures. Be sure to search all of the creatures you kill.  There are other [[:Category: Currency|currencies]] related to certain events, tiers of subscriptions, and other facets of the game, but most if not all can be exchanged in some way for silvers.
 +
 
 +
====Banks====
 +
 
 +
There is a [[bank]] in every major city. When carrying too much silver, it will weigh you down and slow your movements, increasing even the roundtime associated with swinging a weapon. You can use the {{mono|DIR}} command to find the bank in your town and read the sign there for more information.
 +
 
 +
Two basic bank commands are {{mono|DEPOSIT}} and {{mono|WITHDRAW}}. {{mono|DEPOSIT}} allows you to put money into the bank that you have on your person, including any notes in open containers. {{mono|WITHDRAW}} allows you to withdraw silver or bank notes. You can specify the format in which you would like to receive money (example: {{mono|WITHDRAW 1000 NOTE}} will give you 1000 silvers as a bank note; {{mono|WITHDRAW 100000 SILVER}} will pull 100000 silvers from your account) but, by default, any amount over 4999 will come in a note format.
 +
 
 +
====Lockers====
 +
 
 +
All major cities also have [[locker]]s, where you can store any items that you find that you don't need immediately on your person. Basic account holders have one locker holding 50 items in their town of creation, while premium account holders have lockers that hold up to 80 items in every town and the locker contents and are automatically organized. If you join a [[CHE|Cooperative House of Elanthia]], your locker space increases even more.
 +
 
 +
To access your locker, simply step through the curtain and {{mono|OPEN LOCKER}}. You will need to {{mono|CLOSE LOCKER}} before leaving a locker room. Try not to log out in locker rooms with your locker still open.
 +
 
 +
===Death in Elanthia===
 +
{{main|Death's Sting}}
 +
As in most games, death is a part of life in GemStone IV. Fortunately, the gods of Elanthia provide adventurers with the chance to return to life by many different means.
 +
 
 +
====Death and Dying====
 +
 
 +
When your character is killed, your body remains where you died. All items and silver are maintained on your character, and characters in Elanthia cannot be "looted" by other players (though some creatures can steal items). You also won't lose levels or have experience or training points taken away for dying.
 +
 
 +
At the moment of your death, a "decay counter" begins, which is the amount of time you have to be rescued and resurrected before your body decays. Should you decay, you will suffer increased penalties for the death and find yourself alive and well at the designated decay point for your realm.
 +
 
 +
Acquiring [[deed]]s with the goddess [[Lorminstra]], taken at a rate of 1 per normal death, will help alleviate the [[Death's Sting|penalties]] associated with dying in Elanthia, which are mostly semi-permanent Constitution stat loss and a slower rate of experience gain. Deeds can be acquired by making the appropriate offering to a god, though how to make this offering is left to players to discover.
 +
 
 +
====Rejoining the Ranks of the Living====
 +
 
 +
Returning to life is sometimes an easy task and sometimes a very difficult one. You will need to be rescued by other adventurers if you do not want to decay - they will need to bring you somewhere safe and find a cleric, paladin, or another adventurer with the proper tools to raise you from the dead. You can use the {{mono|DRAG}} (example: {{mono|DRAG [player] SOUTH}}) command to move dead adventurers around to try to get them help.
 +
 
 +
Keep in mind that dragging others is a realistic system - it's going to take a lot of strength for a halfling to drag a giantman around. If you're having trouble dragging another adventurer, try unloading some of your items or silver back at the city and returning to try again. You will also find dragging is easier the more offensive your stance is, or with help from other adventurers.
 +
 
 +
==Early Adventuring==
 +
 
 +
Once you have finished creating your character, you will be greeted by a friendly sprite. Depending on your choices, your adventure with the sprite may take you to treasure or tragedy!
 +
 
 +
===The Sprite Quest===
 +
{{main|Sprite quest}}
 +
====What Is This Thing, and Why Is It Following Me?====
 +
 
 +
When your character steps out into Elanthia for the first time, you will notice that there is a sprite accompanying you. This peculiar little creature will guide you on a short series of quests aimed at familiarizing you with life in Elanthia. We recommend that new players complete the quest before moving along, as the sprite quest will answer many questions and provide you with a small amount of experience.
 +
 
 +
====Spritely Rewards====
 +
 
 +
As you move through the sprite quest, your answers will garner you different rewards. The plotline you choose may help you answer some questions about your character and what sort of person you want to be in Elanthia. Most of the moral decisions made within the sprite quest are clean-cut, easy choices, meant to accommodate a wide variety of players.
 +
 
 +
====Afterward====
 +
 
 +
Once you have completed the quest, your sprite will offer to bring you to [[Silverwood Manor]] automatically, so you can speak with a Mentor (volunteer player). This is a good time to bring up any questions the quest brought to light. Once you are satisfied, now would be a great time to start exploring. Make use of the {{mono|DIR}} command to take yourself around town.
 +
 
 +
Starter towns like [[Wehnimer's Landing]], [[Ta'Vaalor]], and [[Icemule Trace]] are all inhabited by NPCs who will gladly employ new adventurers at simple, menial tasks like running messages or gathering water for guards. This is a great way to get to know your surroundings.
 +
 
 +
===New In Town===
 +
 
 +
====Starting Cash====
 +
 
 +
If you completed all of the tasks set before you by the sprite, you should have a bit of silver in your pocket. A decent set of gear was provided to you as soon as you came out of new character creation, so you should not have to purchase anything immediately at the local shops. You will also find that you have been loaned a small sum by the town you are in. One of the first stops you should make is to the local Debt Collector, who will gladly relieve you of this sum.
 +
 
 +
After paying off your debts, it would be wise to use dir bank to get to the nearest bank and deposit some of your hard-won earnings.
 +
 
 +
====Earth Nodes====
 +
 
 +
Commonly called [[node]]s, earth nodes are places where the energies of Elanthia gather and collect. Characters resting at these places will find that they absorb experience more quickly, along with regaining mana, spirit, and health at an accelerated rate. It is advised that you rest at earth nodes between hunts.
 +
 
 +
====Sanctuaries====
 +
 
 +
[[Sanctuary|Sanctuaries]] are magically protected havens where characters can do no violence to one another, and creatures will not travel except in extreme circumstances. As such, these are idyllic places to relax or catch a break from the cares of the day.
 +
 
 +
These gathering spots are also ideal locations to find services provided by other players, and are hotbeds for roleplay.
 +
 
 +
====Wehnimer's Landing====
 +
 
 +
:''[[A beginner's guide to Wehnimer's Landing|Guide: A beginner's guide to Wehnimer's Landing]]''
 +
 
 +
Town Square Central is the cultural heart of Wehnimer's Landing, a sprawling plaza that encompasses the Town Well and the Small Park. A huge, ancient oak boasts a treehouse frequented by adventurers great and small.
 +
 
 +
Hearthstone Manor is an old estate just outside of the gates of Wehnimer's Landing. The steps are often frequented by the great and powerful. Characters must be at least level 20 to enter Hearthstone and partake of the secrets within, but the steps are open to all. This is a superb place to meet some of Elanthia's living legends.
 +
 
 +
Helga's Tavern is a seedy little bar in center of western Wehnimer's; its proprietor is as wide as she is ugly, but something about the atmosphere keeps bringing people back night after night.
 +
 
 +
Outside the Catacombs, you may find a few other new players who are actively engaged in taking out the local rat problem. This is a good locale for the inexperienced.
 +
 
 +
====Icemule Trace====
 +
 
 +
:''[[A beginner's guide to Icemule Trace|Guide: A beginner's guide to Icemule Trace]]''
 +
 
 +
Town Center is dominated by the frozen statue of an enormous mule, which gives the town its name. Despite the cold, the hearts of people in Icemule are warm and welcoming to new adventurers.
 +
 
 +
The Voln Garden is a place of peace, and many healers and clerics have been known to stop by this place for a brief rest. If no healers are present in Town Center, they are probably in the Garden.
 +
 
 +
====Ta'Vaalor====
 +
 
 +
:''[[A beginner's guide to Ta'Vaalor|Guide: A beginner's guide to Ta'Vaalor]]''
 +
 
 +
In Ta'Vaalor, King's Court is a huge courtyard built as a testament to the triumphs of the martial Vaalor elves. Now, in the twilight days of the Elven Empire, this bustling marketplace is a pleasant place to rest.
 +
 
 +
====On the Road Again====
 +
 
 +
Not every town is for everyone. If you find yourself unimpressed with your current town, you have the option of hiring a travel guide at the local travel office. Use {{mono|DIR TRAVEL}} to get to the office. Each new player is given one free travel token, which should be in your inventory when you begin playing. This will allow you free access to any one of the towns available at your local travel guide.
 +
 
 +
====Hunting====
 +
 
 +
Regardless of where you end up, it's likely that you'll eventually want to start hunting. You need not have an integral knowledge of the local terrain. Your local [[Adventurers' Guild]] {{mono|DIR AG}} is run by battle-hardened combatants who will send you off on different missions that will pit you against fiends in a variety of quests. Unlike town jobs, Adventurers' Guild quests scale with your abilities, and can be completed all throughout the life of your character.
 +
 
 +
If you cannot find a creature you have been assigned to hunt, the [[List of creatures by level|Bestiary]] is a helpful place to start. Furthermore, you may wish to [[group|team up]] with another player and go exploring: after all, half the fun of questing is in the journey!
 +
 
 +
==Where to Now?==
 +
 
 +
The [[Order of Lorekeepers]], affectionately dubbed "The Mentors," are a group of wise volunteers who are more than willing to help you on your way. The purpose of these agents is foremost to teach and spread wisdom, knowledge, and etiquette, and secondly to gather and record information for the order and prosperity.
 +
 
 +
===Mentors===
 +
 
 +
The Mentors are the first line of Customer Support for GemStone IV, an organization devoted to assisting players with general questions or difficulties they may be having while playing the game. While they will not solve puzzles for other adventurers, they are well trained for providing information or guidance that might help you better understand how to play the game and interact with the world.
 +
 
 +
The Mentors have offices in Wehnimer's Landing, Ta'Vaalor, and Icemule Trace. You can use DIR silverwood to find the nearest Silverwood Manor in any of these three cities. When you're standing in the courtyard, type RING doorbell to call the attention of the Mentors. If any are available, they may take a few seconds or minutes to respond, but they will be there.
 +
 
 +
===Forums===
 +
 
 +
The [http://forums.play.net/forums/GemStone%20IV/view GemStone IV Forums] are an integral part of your learning experiences here in Elanthia. Hundreds of users frequent these forums on a daily basis, so they are a constant source of news and information.
 +
 
 +
New players will likely find useful information in the Help For Players category. This forum is geared toward general information about GemStone IV and Elanthia, and you may find answers to some of your burning questions therein.
 +
 
 +
The "So You Want to Be" topics in each profession category can help you in establishing yourself quickly in your given class. Topics covered include training and skill-based questions, which will help you optimize your character from a mechanical aspect.
 +
<blockquote>
 +
{|
 +
|
 +
*[http://forums.play.net/forums/GemStone%20IV/Help%20for%20Players/view Help for Players main folder]
 +
**[http://forums.play.net/forums/GemStone%20IV/Help%20for%20Players/Announcements/view Announcements]
 +
**[http://forums.play.net/forums/GemStone%20IV/Help%20for%20Players/Developer's%20Corner%20-%20New%20Player%20Concerns%20&%20Systems/view Developer's Corner - New Player Concerns & Systems]
 +
**[http://forums.play.net/forums/GemStone%20IV/Help%20for%20Players/WIKI%20Discussions/view WIKI Discussions]
 +
**[http://forums.play.net/forums/GemStone%20IV/Help%20for%20Players/Help%20for%20Returning%20Players/view Help for Returning Players]
 +
**[http://forums.play.net/forums/GemStone%20IV/Help%20for%20Players/General%20Gameplay%20Questions/view General Gameplay Questions]
 +
**[http://forums.play.net/forums/GemStone%20IV/Help%20for%20Players/Policy%20Discussions/view Policy Discussions]
 +
|
 +
*[http://forums.play.net/forums/GemStone%20IV/Help%20for%20Players/Crossposts%20from%20GMs/view Crossposts from GMs]
 +
*[http://forums.play.net/forums/GemStone%20IV/Help%20for%20Players/The%20Experience%20System/view The Experience System]
 +
*[http://forums.play.net/forums/GemStone%20IV/Help%20for%20Players/Skill%20Management%20and%20Migration/view Skill Management and Migration]
 +
*[http://forums.play.net/forums/GemStone%20IV/Help%20for%20Players/Death,%20Deeds,%20and%20Resurrection/view Death, Deeds, and Resurrection]
 +
*[http://forums.play.net/forums/GemStone%20IV/Help%20for%20Players/Finding%20GemStone%20information%20on%20the%20Web/view Finding GemStone information on the Web]
 +
*[http://forums.play.net/forums/GemStone%20IV/Help%20for%20Players/Fame!/view Fame!]
 +
|}
 +
</blockquote>
 +
 
 +
===Cooperative Houses of Elanthia and Meeting Hall Organizations===
 +
 
 +
The [[CHE|Cooperative Houses of Elanthia]] (CHE) and [[Meeting Hall Organization]] (MHO) systems are excellent ways to meet other players for learning, roleplay, and friendship. Each house and Meeting Hall has its own agenda, and in concert they represent a myriad of different people and themes.
 +
 
 +
Cooperative Houses are a throwback to Elanthia's past, and are often large manor houses of dozens of rooms that offer their members benefits in exchange for initiation fees, and sometimes monthly dues. These bonuses include expanded locker space and access to private house areas. Most exist in Wehnimer's Landing, but scatterings exist based in other towns like Ta'Vaalor, and Icemule Trace.  CHEs might also have annex structures consisting of several rooms in towns other than their base.
 +
 
 +
Meeting Hall Organizations are smaller, more current, and feature greater diversity in purposes and goals than do CHEs. As a player, you can be a member of a number of MHOs, but only a single CHE at a time. A MHO might also have a structure, depending on how active it is, but does not have lockers.
  
 
[[Category:New Player]]
 
[[Category:New Player]]
 
[[Category:Guides]]
 
[[Category:Guides]]
 +
[[category: Character Mechanics]]

Latest revision as of 21:37, 17 January 2018

Welcome to Elanthia. This guide is intended to aid a new player in joining GemStone IV.

Introductory YouTube video by Lord Whirlin

This is an updated version of the old play.net Gemstone IV New Player Guide, with credits to the original author(s).

What is GemStone IV?

GemStone IV is unique. The longest-running text-based game in the industry, it boasts hundreds of users online at any given time. What defines GemStone is a close-knit community, some members of which have been adventuring in Elanthia for well over a decade.

The World of Elanthia is one of contrasts and conflict, a constantly shifting landscape of light and darkness, where everyone must work together, or find the courage to stand-alone. For players new and old, the world is constantly changing and growing.

With over fifty thousand locations to explore, hundreds of creatures and puzzles, and a vast array of fully customizable items, GemStone IV is a behemoth of an experience.

You and Your Character

As you experience Elanthia, you do it through the eyes of your character, whose actions, thoughts, and motivations you ultimately control. The fate of your character and those around will frequently be in your hands. When conflicts rise, your character's life and reputation hang in the balance of your decisions.

Roleplaying

Main article: Roleplay
Guide: The Art of Roleplaying in GemStone IV

Your character knows nothing outside the world in which they exist. While Elanthia has many similarities to our reality, within its confines is a different universe. The setting is a collage of periods that blend into a medieval reality where magic and technology meet to clash or create.

This effectively means that the things your character says or does should stay true to its nature and that of the world. Discussing things that are not in the genre or generally not something that characters in this world would do or know is beyond the intent of the game. The staff does enforce this and will take measures to ensure that characters' roles and actions stay true to the game world.

Rooms, Creatures, NPCs, and Items

GemStone IV is a realm of rooms, each of which signifies a specific location. Your character will always be in a room, though you can move to new rooms through any exits in that room. Those exits could be as simple as heading north or south, or as complicated as sneaking through a hidden grate in an empty fireplace.

The myriad of creatures that call Elanthia their home are as diverse as the adventurers who battle them. Creatures exist with their own motivations. Some are friends; others are foes, and many are wild beasts living on instinct beyond the borders of civilization. Still others are controlled by the dark forces of the world, amassing and attacking cities or towns in invasions that can scale from a small skirmish to epic battles with armies fit to end civilization.

When in conflict, you can arm yourself with literally thousands of different weapons, armors, shields, and magical artifacts to aid you on your path. These items are often fully customizable, from their descriptions down to potent abilities. There are hundreds of events and staff-controlled NPCs--non-player characters--who visit on a consistent basis to provide players with a multitude of services.

Creating Your Character

Main article: Character creation

If you have not done so, you will need to create a GemStone IV account. To sign up for a new account: http://www.play.net/gs4/

A free to play account has no restrictions on travel or character advancement, but some features like item storage and casting spells on other characters are disabled or limited. You can purchase passes to lift these limits temporarily, or upgrade at any time from a free account to a monthly subscription which permanently unlocks all features.

Once you have an account, you will be able to do several things: post on and read the forums, view important announcements about Elanthia, and most importantly, log in to the game!

After you sign in to your account, you will be given two choices: "Choose a character to play" and "Select client". The first choice will be to Create a new character. The second choice gives 3 choices, though it lists 4. These are StormFront, Wizard, Web Client, and Java. Likely the best choice for a new player is StormFront, which you will need to download from the site. When a choice is made, hit the orange button labelled "Create Character."

Profession

Your character's profession is his or her special job in Elanthia, and largely defines the skills and specialties available to you during your time in Elanthia. Although your profession does not directly dictate your roleplay, there are some abilities that only certain professions can access. Alchemy, for example, is limited to Clerics, Empaths, Sorcerers, and Wizards, while certain Combat Maneuvers are only usable by Rogues or Warriors.

Melee

Magic

Hybrid

Profession Bonuses

Professions also provide enhancements to a character's attributes bonuses. These are referenced in more detail on the individual professions' pages.

Choosing a Race

Your character's race heavily affects your roleplay, as well as the mechanical strengths and weaknesses of your character. Each race is distinct and has its own unique history. While your profession affects the cost and availability of skills, race will directly affect your statistics, and therefore the number of training points you can use to spend on skills.

Racial Attributes

All races have their strengths and weaknesses, but certain races possess extraordinary bonuses that make them well suited to particular professions. Giantmen, Dwarves, and Half-Krolvin, for example, make excellent Warriors due to their high Strength and Constitution. The exceptional Dexterity of Halflings makes them extraordinary as Wizards. Dark Elves are gifted with magic in general, reflected by their enhanced Wisdom and Aura.

It is possible for most races to do well at any given profession, yet some will find an easier path than others.

Pitfalls

Because GemStone is a roleplaying game, your chosen race can carry some stigma that will affect your playing experience. Dark Elves are widely loathed in most cities, and may meet with higher shop prices in the West, or complete exclusion from some services in the Elven Nations. Halfling players, in turn, may be snubbed by Dark Elves who view them as frippery (or worse, lunch.) In Human-controlled lands, most other races are viewed with some level and variety of disdain.

Cultures

Races also feature subsets known as cultures. Some races are homogeneous: for example the professions of one's ancestors largely determine Aelotoi cultures. Other cultures often feature surprising variety. A Human of the Tehir clans comes from a vastly different lifestyle than one from Hendor or elsewhere in the Turamzzyrian Empire. You are encouraged to examine the different cultures before choosing one. While you do not need to choose your character's culture right away, the selection is permanent once completed.

Rerolling

Race and profession are permanent features of your character. Starting out is not easy for any profession, and frequently class-defining skills will take some time and leveling to develop. If you are certain that you are dissatisfied with either your race or profession and wish to change, you may reroll your character at the nearest inn.

Rerolling is not a choice to be taken lightly. Your character is essentially reset, starting from zero, and you will have to begin anew.

Customizing Your Appearance

Guide: Character customization

Many combinations of features are available to your character. Some of these features are available to everyone; others, like pointed ears, are limited to certain races. You can have the character manager assign you a random set of features if they are unimportant to you.

Features are not permanent in GemStone. In addition to pavilions across the game where you can select new basic features at any time, there are also merchants called feature alterers who allow access to custom descriptions for your character. Your inventory can be altered in a like fashion.

Attributes

Attribute/Stat Effects

Strength: Melee AS, Ranged Speed, Encumbrance
Constitution: Max Health, Encumbrance
Dexterity: Ranged AS, Melee Speed
Agility: Melee Speed, DS
Discipline: Experience Pool
Aura: Elemental CS/TD, Max Spirit
Logic: Experience Pool/Absorption, Mental CS
Intuition: Locksmithing
Wisdom: Spiritual CS/TD
Influence: Trading

Attributes, or 'stats', are the mechanical lifeblood of your character. Unlike skills, which are selected and purchased with training points, attributes define your character. They are set only once, during character creation, and grow throughout the life of your character.

The mathematically minded may want to spend time reading documentation and seeking the 'perfect' combination of stats for their character, but the average player will have little trouble using the auto-assigned attributes available through the character creation system.

After attributes are assigned, they are modified by and will grow differently according to your profession and race.

Attributes, also, are largely permanent, and after your first 20 levels it will not be possible to change them without rerolling your character or using a very expensive 'fixstats' potion.

Skills and Training

Skill training allows you to set your unique mark upon a character. Although the skills you train in are integral to your character's makeup, what you train in is less important than being consistent in your choices. Dabbling in a skill here and there in GemStone IV is much the same as doing so in the real world: you will end up with mediocre abilities in many subjects, but without mastery of anything.

Training

In Elanthia, it is essential that your character pushes forward and masters skills, as your foes will certainly be doing so. Some skills, like Climbing and Swimming, will provide only a negligible bonus if trained past a certain point. Others, like Spell Aiming for Wizards and Weapons Training for non-casters, are lifetime investments.

GemStone IV is unusual in that skills are not always purchased immediately as a character gains a level. Training points toward your character's next level are accrued as your character earns experience, allowing you to get a leg up on skills for the next level.

Skills can be trained by checking into an inn or by using the GOALS command.

Class Comfort

Some skills are essential for a given profession, and as such can (and should) be trained more than one time a level. A Sorcerer would be lax in training with only a single jaunt into Spell Research each level, but might not want to indulge in Shield Use at all. In contrast, a Warrior would be foolish to expend too much effort in learning spells while forsaking Shield training.

Certain skills that your profession is comfortable with may not suit your personal playing style. As playing style is a completely subjective medium, it would be wise to consult with a Mentor, your profession page, or experienced players before making precipitous decisions about your skill training.

Retraining

Normally, skills are difficult to untrain once you have selected them. Small changes in skills can be accomplished in a matter of hours, but forgetting an entire skill might take weeks or months to manage. GemStone IV is not without leeway for new players. During your first 20 levels, you can make instant changes to your skills at any time. This allows you to explore a wide variety of skillsets as a new player before finally settling on your chosen path.

Furthermore, during the Festival of Oleani each Spring, a FIXSKILLS is granted to characters on paying accounts. Using the fixskills verb will allow you to instantly align your actual skills with your skill goals. This allows you to repair any major mistakes in your training, or to choose a new path entirely. (Fixskills potions are also available for purchase in the Simucoin Store and the Adventurer's Guild.)

What's In a Name?

At the end of the character creation process, you will be asked to name your character. Characters names should be original and in keeping with a fantasy environment. Keep in mind that science fiction is not fantasy, and as such, names like Robocop and Jeanlucpicard may earn you a mandatory name change as well as some strange looks.

Interacting with the World

Interacting with The World of Elanthia is done through use of commands. GemStone is accessed through StormFront, a program that interprets the vast game world, featuring point-and-click options, web links, and many other powerful features.

Text in TELETYPE indicates a command that can be typed and text in "quotes" indicates a link in StormFront that can be clicked (see below).

StormFront Link
The "Windows" Window

If a window in StormFront is mentioned that you don't seem to have open, find the "Windows" window (which you cannot close) and make sure that the eye icon to the left of the window you want to have visible is open. An open eye is black, and a closed eye is white. Most commands explain how to use themselves if you type them. For example, typing WHISPER by itself will tell you everything you want to know about using whispers.

All StormFront users begin in Chat Mode, where anything typed into the black command bar comes out as something the character says. If you want to switch to Command Mode so you can type commands like LOOK or DIR, click the gray chat bubble just to the left of the command bar. Confirm the window that pops up, and the chat bubble will change to a > sign, which you can click again to switch back to Chat Mode later.

StormFront in Chat mode
StormFront in Command mode

Movement and Awareness

First and most importantly, some basic commands for figuring out where you are and how to get elsewhere.

LOOK gives a room's description, items, creatures and NPCs (Non-Player Characters), and obvious exits. To use this command, either click the "look" button in the menu immediately above the command bar (where your typed text is being entered) or type LOOK. Your current room appears automatically in StormFront's Room window.

DIR (directions), gives directions to common places in any of the starting cities. Click the "directions" button in the menu just above the command bar and then click on the place you want to go, or type DIR [place] [number of steps you want shown].

In cases where you want to use exits that aren't obvious like gates or doors, click on the "name of the exit link" in the room description and then click "go". You can also type GO [portal].

You can go in any obvious direction by either clicking or typing that direction. If you want to move northeast, click "northeast", type NE, or use your 9-key number pad. In addition any obvious exits in the room will be automatically highlighted for you on the compass in the bottom right corner of StormFront.

The Look Button
The Directions Button
DIR Example
GO Example
The Compass

Communication

The ability to communicate is what keeps the world alive. These are a few of the ways to communicate with your fellow players. Keep in mind that you must remain in character when talking out loud or in any area where other players may overhear you.

SAY can be used to say something that everyone in your current room will hear. The syntax is SAY [message]. This can be abbreviated by using an apostrophe (example: 'Hello there.). If you want to speak to another person in your room, click the "character's name link", select "speak to", then type what you want to say to them. They need to be in your room for "speak to" to appear.

WHISPER is used to speak to another character in your current room without anyone else hearing. Click the "character's name link" and select "whisper to", then type out what you want to whisper. You can also type WHISPER [person] [message].

YELL can be used to shout something that will be heard by everyone in your current room and all adjacent rooms. The syntax is YELL [MESSAGE].

THINK can be used to send out a thought heard by all players in your current realm. You'll need to find and RUB a crystal amulet to use this. When you first RUB your amulet, you'll be on the Gray channel. You can think out loud using THINK [message] (example: THINK Hello.). Click any "character's name link" and, if they are within range, click "think to" and then type out what you want to think to them. You can also type THINK TO [person].

SAY Example
WHISPER Example
YELL Example
THINK Example

Character Information

Your character's basic information is a measure of your advancement in the game world. There are a few important ways to check this information.

The easiest way to check all character info is to click the "character sheet" button just above the command bar in StormFront. The window that pops up contains all relevant character data, and there are ways to quickly access different parts of this information through commands.

EXP brings up your experience. Experience is needed to advance your character from one level to the next. EXP shows your current level along with total experience and how much experience is needed to hit the next level. EXP also shows your character's training points and deeds, which are covered in a later section.

INFO brings up your stats and character description. Your stats grow as you level and play an important role in how many training points you get when you level up. INFO also shows your current mana and on-hand silver.

SKILLS brings up your skills and spells, displaying both the ranks you have and the bonus that those ranks give you, which are covered in a later section.

The Character Sheet Button and Window

Inventory and Items

Guide: Item Management

Your character's inventory and items comprise a significant portion of your character's identity in GemStone IV. Nearly all items are highly customizable, and there are dozens of types.

INV brings up your character's inventory, which includes everything you're wearing and whatever is in your hands. Click the "inventory" button just above the command bar in StormFront to bring this up. There are also several advanced options to the INV verb that will appear when you use it.

GET allows you to pick up an item, if you have a free hand. Click an "item's name link" and then drag that item over one of your containers to immediately pick up the item and place it in that container. You can also click an "item's name link" and then click "get", or type GET [item].

PUT allows you to place an item from one of your hands into one of your containers. Click an "item's name link" and then drag that item over a container to place it into the container, or type PUT MY [item] IN MY [container].

It's important to use the adjective MY when moving items around your inventory. MY is used to indicate that the item you're referencing is on your character, which means it will make sure that you're putting your item into one of your containers, not one that may be on the ground or a nearby bench.

WEAR allows you to wear an item that you're holding. Items are automatically worn where they are supposed to be worn in your inventory. Click an "item's name link" and click "wear", or type WEAR [item].

REMOVE allows you to remove an item that you're wearing, if you have a free hand. Click an item and drag it into one of the hand icons in the top left-hand corner of the StormFront window to move the item to that hand. You can also click an "item's name link" in your inventory and click "remove", or type REMOVE MY [item].

Inventory Button
GET Example
PUT Example
WEAR Example
REMOVE Example

Combat Basics

Guide: A beginner's guide to combat
The Combat Window

The primary way to gain experience and money in the game is by killing other creatures.

If you want to attack a creature, you can click on its "creature name link" and choose "attack", select it from the drop down and click on the "attack" button in StormFront's Combat window, or type ATTACK [critter]. Typing ATTACK by itself will automatically cause you to attack the first critter available in a room.

You can use the STANCE command or click the "stance" button in the Combat window to change your stance. The more offensive your stance, the more you'll be focusing on attack over defense. Your AS (Attack Strength) and DS (Defense Strength) are heightened or lowered accordingly.

Once a creature is dead, some creatures can be skinned. You can click on a "creature's corpse link" to see if the "skin" option is available and click that, click on the "skin" button in StormFront's Combat window, or type SKIN [critter]. Depending on your Survival and First Aid skills, along with your level, this may produce a skin of varying quality, or you may fail to skin the creature entirely.

Most creatures can also be searched after they've been killed. Searching a creature will let you find any treasure it may have, including locked boxes, gems, coins, and magical artifacts. You can click on a "creature's corpse link" and click "search" to search it, click on the "search" button in StormFront's Combat window, or type SEARCH [critter].

ATTACK Example
SKIN Example
SEARCH Example

Experience, Levels, and Silver

Other than roleplaying, one of the basic premises of GemStone IV is the acquisition of money and experience. As you gain more of both, your character becomes more powerful by gaining levels, and coincidentally will be able to afford better equipment and armor. Experience comes in two varieties: field experience and real experience. You will usually gain field experience from your activities in the world of Elanthia. This takes time to 'absorb' and become real experience.

Weapons and Armor

Guide to all of Elanthia's armor, weapons, and materials used in their construction

In order to combat the creatures in the encroaching wilderness, adventurers use weapons and armor crafted in the world. There are many different types of weapons and weapon styles, including (but not limited to) standard weapon/shield combinations, the more defensive runestaff for casters, and even bows and crossbows.

Weapon Shop, Armor Shop, Pawnshop

There are a few basic places where most adventurers go to find weapons, armor, and magical items from non-player vendors. Every major city has a weapon shop, armor shop, and pawnshop. If you're in a starting city, you can use the DIR command to find these.

Special metals and woods

When you go shopping for new weapons or armor, you may find that some are composed of special materials. These materials directly contribute to how much AS or DS the weapon or armor gives your character. In order to use these, your character's level must equal half of the AS or DS bonus of the item, rounded up.

So, for example, an ora broadsword gives an automatic +10 AS when used to attack something. Your character would need to be level 5 to even pick up or hold this weapon. If you can't pick up a certain weapon or armor, it may be because you aren't high enough level to hold it!

The Elemental Blade spell is a unique magic that gives a weapon a +20 to your AS, and you need to be level 10 to hold items that are e-bladed. These items can be identified by the scintillating light surrounding them when you LOOK at them.

What kind of weapon and armor should you use?

Starting out, we recommend that you use basic weapons and armor for your first few levels. You can wield mithril equipment (+5 to AS for weapons; +5 to DS for armor/shields) when you reach level 3, and ora equipment (+10 to AS for weapons; +10 to DS for armor/shields) when you reach level 5. Most adventurers carry vultite equipment (+20 to AS for weapons; +20 to DS for armor/shields), which you can hold at level 10, and this is considered to be equipment for experienced players.

Hunting

When players talk about hunting in Elanthia, they're referring to going out and fighting creatures in the areas bordering the major cities. There are hundreds of hunting areas, and the creatures that inhabit them boast a wide range of levels and tricks. New players should try to stick closer to town, as creatures there are relatively weak and geared towards players with lower-level characters.

Experience, Levels, and Training Points

When you kill creatures around your own level, you gain a certain amount of experience for doing so. The GemStone IV experience system is unique in that the experience that you gain is not immediately applied to your total experience. When you're hunting, you will have experience you gain in the field saved in your mind. You must gradually convert the experience in your character's head into real experience that will gain you levels.

Every minute, a little of your field experience is converted to real experience. You can only hold so much field experience until you stop gaining field experience, so it's common for adventurers to go out, hunt until their mind can't take anymore, then head back into a city to rest. Certain areas, such as sanctuaries where combat can't take place, provide a boost to how fast you convert field experience to real experience.

Your character's skills can be raised by spending training points on those skills. You get more training points every level by having higher character statistics. Every so often, you will gain some training points from your experience earned. You can type the GOALS command in game to apply these training points to skills and gain ranks in those skills.

Material Wealth and Items

The silver coin is the main unit of currency in Elanthia. The most common method of making silver is to find it on the bodies of creatures, but you can also find it in boxes or items dropped by those creatures. Be sure to search all of the creatures you kill. There are other currencies related to certain events, tiers of subscriptions, and other facets of the game, but most if not all can be exchanged in some way for silvers.

Banks

There is a bank in every major city. When carrying too much silver, it will weigh you down and slow your movements, increasing even the roundtime associated with swinging a weapon. You can use the DIR command to find the bank in your town and read the sign there for more information.

Two basic bank commands are DEPOSIT and WITHDRAW. DEPOSIT allows you to put money into the bank that you have on your person, including any notes in open containers. WITHDRAW allows you to withdraw silver or bank notes. You can specify the format in which you would like to receive money (example: WITHDRAW 1000 NOTE will give you 1000 silvers as a bank note; WITHDRAW 100000 SILVER will pull 100000 silvers from your account) but, by default, any amount over 4999 will come in a note format.

Lockers

All major cities also have lockers, where you can store any items that you find that you don't need immediately on your person. Basic account holders have one locker holding 50 items in their town of creation, while premium account holders have lockers that hold up to 80 items in every town and the locker contents and are automatically organized. If you join a Cooperative House of Elanthia, your locker space increases even more.

To access your locker, simply step through the curtain and OPEN LOCKER. You will need to CLOSE LOCKER before leaving a locker room. Try not to log out in locker rooms with your locker still open.

Death in Elanthia

Main article: Death's Sting

As in most games, death is a part of life in GemStone IV. Fortunately, the gods of Elanthia provide adventurers with the chance to return to life by many different means.

Death and Dying

When your character is killed, your body remains where you died. All items and silver are maintained on your character, and characters in Elanthia cannot be "looted" by other players (though some creatures can steal items). You also won't lose levels or have experience or training points taken away for dying.

At the moment of your death, a "decay counter" begins, which is the amount of time you have to be rescued and resurrected before your body decays. Should you decay, you will suffer increased penalties for the death and find yourself alive and well at the designated decay point for your realm.

Acquiring deeds with the goddess Lorminstra, taken at a rate of 1 per normal death, will help alleviate the penalties associated with dying in Elanthia, which are mostly semi-permanent Constitution stat loss and a slower rate of experience gain. Deeds can be acquired by making the appropriate offering to a god, though how to make this offering is left to players to discover.

Rejoining the Ranks of the Living

Returning to life is sometimes an easy task and sometimes a very difficult one. You will need to be rescued by other adventurers if you do not want to decay - they will need to bring you somewhere safe and find a cleric, paladin, or another adventurer with the proper tools to raise you from the dead. You can use the DRAG (example: DRAG [player] SOUTH) command to move dead adventurers around to try to get them help.

Keep in mind that dragging others is a realistic system - it's going to take a lot of strength for a halfling to drag a giantman around. If you're having trouble dragging another adventurer, try unloading some of your items or silver back at the city and returning to try again. You will also find dragging is easier the more offensive your stance is, or with help from other adventurers.

Early Adventuring

Once you have finished creating your character, you will be greeted by a friendly sprite. Depending on your choices, your adventure with the sprite may take you to treasure or tragedy!

The Sprite Quest

Main article: Sprite quest

What Is This Thing, and Why Is It Following Me?

When your character steps out into Elanthia for the first time, you will notice that there is a sprite accompanying you. This peculiar little creature will guide you on a short series of quests aimed at familiarizing you with life in Elanthia. We recommend that new players complete the quest before moving along, as the sprite quest will answer many questions and provide you with a small amount of experience.

Spritely Rewards

As you move through the sprite quest, your answers will garner you different rewards. The plotline you choose may help you answer some questions about your character and what sort of person you want to be in Elanthia. Most of the moral decisions made within the sprite quest are clean-cut, easy choices, meant to accommodate a wide variety of players.

Afterward

Once you have completed the quest, your sprite will offer to bring you to Silverwood Manor automatically, so you can speak with a Mentor (volunteer player). This is a good time to bring up any questions the quest brought to light. Once you are satisfied, now would be a great time to start exploring. Make use of the DIR command to take yourself around town.

Starter towns like Wehnimer's Landing, Ta'Vaalor, and Icemule Trace are all inhabited by NPCs who will gladly employ new adventurers at simple, menial tasks like running messages or gathering water for guards. This is a great way to get to know your surroundings.

New In Town

Starting Cash

If you completed all of the tasks set before you by the sprite, you should have a bit of silver in your pocket. A decent set of gear was provided to you as soon as you came out of new character creation, so you should not have to purchase anything immediately at the local shops. You will also find that you have been loaned a small sum by the town you are in. One of the first stops you should make is to the local Debt Collector, who will gladly relieve you of this sum.

After paying off your debts, it would be wise to use dir bank to get to the nearest bank and deposit some of your hard-won earnings.

Earth Nodes

Commonly called nodes, earth nodes are places where the energies of Elanthia gather and collect. Characters resting at these places will find that they absorb experience more quickly, along with regaining mana, spirit, and health at an accelerated rate. It is advised that you rest at earth nodes between hunts.

Sanctuaries

Sanctuaries are magically protected havens where characters can do no violence to one another, and creatures will not travel except in extreme circumstances. As such, these are idyllic places to relax or catch a break from the cares of the day.

These gathering spots are also ideal locations to find services provided by other players, and are hotbeds for roleplay.

Wehnimer's Landing

Guide: A beginner's guide to Wehnimer's Landing

Town Square Central is the cultural heart of Wehnimer's Landing, a sprawling plaza that encompasses the Town Well and the Small Park. A huge, ancient oak boasts a treehouse frequented by adventurers great and small.

Hearthstone Manor is an old estate just outside of the gates of Wehnimer's Landing. The steps are often frequented by the great and powerful. Characters must be at least level 20 to enter Hearthstone and partake of the secrets within, but the steps are open to all. This is a superb place to meet some of Elanthia's living legends.

Helga's Tavern is a seedy little bar in center of western Wehnimer's; its proprietor is as wide as she is ugly, but something about the atmosphere keeps bringing people back night after night.

Outside the Catacombs, you may find a few other new players who are actively engaged in taking out the local rat problem. This is a good locale for the inexperienced.

Icemule Trace

Guide: A beginner's guide to Icemule Trace

Town Center is dominated by the frozen statue of an enormous mule, which gives the town its name. Despite the cold, the hearts of people in Icemule are warm and welcoming to new adventurers.

The Voln Garden is a place of peace, and many healers and clerics have been known to stop by this place for a brief rest. If no healers are present in Town Center, they are probably in the Garden.

Ta'Vaalor

Guide: A beginner's guide to Ta'Vaalor

In Ta'Vaalor, King's Court is a huge courtyard built as a testament to the triumphs of the martial Vaalor elves. Now, in the twilight days of the Elven Empire, this bustling marketplace is a pleasant place to rest.

On the Road Again

Not every town is for everyone. If you find yourself unimpressed with your current town, you have the option of hiring a travel guide at the local travel office. Use DIR TRAVEL to get to the office. Each new player is given one free travel token, which should be in your inventory when you begin playing. This will allow you free access to any one of the towns available at your local travel guide.

Hunting

Regardless of where you end up, it's likely that you'll eventually want to start hunting. You need not have an integral knowledge of the local terrain. Your local Adventurers' Guild DIR AG is run by battle-hardened combatants who will send you off on different missions that will pit you against fiends in a variety of quests. Unlike town jobs, Adventurers' Guild quests scale with your abilities, and can be completed all throughout the life of your character.

If you cannot find a creature you have been assigned to hunt, the Bestiary is a helpful place to start. Furthermore, you may wish to team up with another player and go exploring: after all, half the fun of questing is in the journey!

Where to Now?

The Order of Lorekeepers, affectionately dubbed "The Mentors," are a group of wise volunteers who are more than willing to help you on your way. The purpose of these agents is foremost to teach and spread wisdom, knowledge, and etiquette, and secondly to gather and record information for the order and prosperity.

Mentors

The Mentors are the first line of Customer Support for GemStone IV, an organization devoted to assisting players with general questions or difficulties they may be having while playing the game. While they will not solve puzzles for other adventurers, they are well trained for providing information or guidance that might help you better understand how to play the game and interact with the world.

The Mentors have offices in Wehnimer's Landing, Ta'Vaalor, and Icemule Trace. You can use DIR silverwood to find the nearest Silverwood Manor in any of these three cities. When you're standing in the courtyard, type RING doorbell to call the attention of the Mentors. If any are available, they may take a few seconds or minutes to respond, but they will be there.

Forums

The GemStone IV Forums are an integral part of your learning experiences here in Elanthia. Hundreds of users frequent these forums on a daily basis, so they are a constant source of news and information.

New players will likely find useful information in the Help For Players category. This forum is geared toward general information about GemStone IV and Elanthia, and you may find answers to some of your burning questions therein.

The "So You Want to Be" topics in each profession category can help you in establishing yourself quickly in your given class. Topics covered include training and skill-based questions, which will help you optimize your character from a mechanical aspect.

Cooperative Houses of Elanthia and Meeting Hall Organizations

The Cooperative Houses of Elanthia (CHE) and Meeting Hall Organization (MHO) systems are excellent ways to meet other players for learning, roleplay, and friendship. Each house and Meeting Hall has its own agenda, and in concert they represent a myriad of different people and themes.

Cooperative Houses are a throwback to Elanthia's past, and are often large manor houses of dozens of rooms that offer their members benefits in exchange for initiation fees, and sometimes monthly dues. These bonuses include expanded locker space and access to private house areas. Most exist in Wehnimer's Landing, but scatterings exist based in other towns like Ta'Vaalor, and Icemule Trace. CHEs might also have annex structures consisting of several rooms in towns other than their base.

Meeting Hall Organizations are smaller, more current, and feature greater diversity in purposes and goals than do CHEs. As a player, you can be a member of a number of MHOs, but only a single CHE at a time. A MHO might also have a structure, depending on how active it is, but does not have lockers.