Are you an ArcheAge tire-kicker who’s wondering how to go “off the rails” and trade the game’s questpark level grind for some of that downhome sandbox flavor? I’m here to tell you that it’s as easy as deciding that you really want to do it.

There’s no magic button or pre-scripted path, though, because the game is sorta sandboxy.

Here’s a question. What do you want to do in ArcheAge? Your answer can’t be “I want to do something besides the quest grind.” You have to be specific, define that something, and then look it up. ArcheAge leaves a lot to be desired in terms of in-game tutorials and explanations, but because of how long it’s been playable in various markets, there is a ton of how-to info available.

This may sound harsh, but I get the feeling that MMO fans have forgotten how to play a game with sandbox elements. And that’s to be expected, given the way that one particular design paradigm has dominated this genre for over a decade now and has trained us all to think a certain way and go through certain motions regardless of the type of MMO we find ourselves inhabiting.

So let me help you out. Do you want to be a trader? Do the blue salt intro quests, guides for which are here. Once you do these intro quests, though, you’re on your own. You’ll have to decide whether you want to transport a pack of apple tarts (or spices, or snowlion yarn, or dozens of other specialties) to Austere or Mahadevi or Lutesong Harbor based on the time and risk involved and based on the current trading prices, which fluctuate according to NPC demand, which is a function of how many players have recently completed the same trade run. Read More →