EverQuest II Extended Newbies FAQ



EverQuest II Extended Newbies Frequently Asked Questions by Didi

What Class/Race should I pick??
This is a very brief summary only – for more detailed and accurate information, visit the EverQuest II Extended Class Choices Guide.

Tanks (their role in a group is to TAUNT, and take the hits so the rest of the group isn’t hurt).

  • Guardian: plate tank, great capacity for keeping aggro but best at single-target, has more trouble keeping aggro on grouped mobs. Most popular choice for raid tank, also fine as group tank. Very slow soloing.
  • Berserker: plate tank, good damage dealer at high levels, especially in AE’s. Better than guardian at keeping aggro on grouped mobs, but worse on single targets. Better than guardians at soloing (due to more damage output) but not that great (no heals, little utility). Fine as a group tank, second most common choice as a raid tank.
  • Paladin: plate tank, but a bit of a hybrid class with healing abilities also. Can do decent damage, particularly AE’s, at high levels with the right achievement choices. Not as good a raid tank as guardian/berserker, but can do ok if needed. Has a useful ‘amends’ ability that is put on another player, and gives their hate gain to the paladin, making them good at keeping aggro. Very versatile class that isn’t best at anything, but can fill in various roles in groups or raids, such as patch healing, wards, rezzing so the healers don’t have to, and more. Solos well, due to healing ability, though damage isn’t all that high so fights tend to be slowish. Tanks groups just fine.
  • Shadow Knight: plate tank, evil version of Paladin. Also a more utility type class that isn’t best at any one thing but is much more versatile than guardian or berserker. Probably a bit less useful filling in other group roles than the paladin, as abilities are a bit more self-focused. Solos ok, tanks groups just fine, rarely desired on raids however.
  • Monk: avoidance tank, leather-wearing. Solos great, with invis and feign there is almost nowhere the monk can’t get to. Fine as a group tank if well played, though makes some healers nervous because health tends to go up and down more suddenly than plate tanks. Not a popular choice for raid tank, since when the monk’s avoidance fails, one hit from an epic can take a large chunk of his health down very fast. Fine for tanking anything less than epic however. Gets a nice group feign ability, can self-haste to almost 100%, and has a spell called Devastation Fist that can single-shot kill a non-heroic mob. Can do very nice damage particularly with the right achievement choices, sometimes has a problem not getting aggro however if not the one tanking.
  • Bruiser: avoidance tank, leather-wearing. Solos great, has self feign like the monk but does not get invis, nor group feign. Fine as a group tank if well played, though makes some healers nervous because health tends to go up and down more suddenly than plate tanks. Not a popular choice for raid tank, for same reason as monk. Also gets Devastation Fist. Can do very nice damage particularly with the right achievement choices, sometimes has a problem not getting aggro however if not the one tanking.

Mages (all cloth wearers – magic damage and utility)

  • Wizard: single-target magic damage specialist, mostly elemental direct damage. Pretty good at AE also. Gets to translocate and teleport at level 25, also gets evac and group evac. Solos well, always welcome in groups and usually welcome in raids for damage. Main problems for wizard players are usually running out of power, and learning how not to grab aggro, since wizards have very little ability to reduce their hate gain.
  • Warlock: grouped-target magic damage specialist, mostly poison/disease damage over time. Has some single target nukes too though not as big as wizard’s. Gets the translocate and teleport at 25, but not evac. Solos ok, usually welcome in groups, but not as popular on raids as not many raids are AE friendly. Same problem as wizards for power and aggro.
  • Conjuror: pet class, specializes in elemental summoning and elemental magic. Excellent at soloing, welcome in groups and raids. Gets Call of the Hero ability to summon a groupmate to the group’s location. Gives out clicky mana shards to group/raid members for instant power. Excellent damage.
  • Necromancer: pet class, specializes in undead summoning and disease/poison damage, particularly damage over time. Excellent at soloing (probably even better than conjuror) and widely regarded as one of the best solo classes, also welcome in groups/raids. Gets feign death, rez, and some healing ability for self and group. Can also summon clicky mana shards for group/raid. Excellent damage.
  • Illusionist: mez class and pet class, but rarely uses pets in groups due to large number of concentration slots they require. Excellent at soloing, on a par with necromancers and conjurors, maybe even better. Specializes in buffing up melee classes, gets 65% haste by level 70. Also gets group invis. Low damage without pet, more of a support class with the power regen, and achievements that increase criticals chances. Usually welcome in groups and raids, everybody loves a power regen class. Has a wider range of mezzes than coercer; unlike coercer, cannot charm things.
  • Coercer: mez class. Does not get a ‘built in’ pet like illusionist, can only acquire a pet by charming a monster. This makes their pets potentially more powerful than illusionists, but also more dangerous as charm breaks randomly. Takes a lot of skill to solo with a coercer, those who do it well can solo very powerful things, but it is not easy.Coercers have better aggro control abilities than illusionists and are a popular choice in the main tank group of a raid for helping the MT keep aggro. Usually welcome in groups and always welcome in raids.

Healers (their main role is to heal and rez)

  • Templar/inquisitor: plate wearer, specializes in reactive heals. These are like a buff placed on the tank which automatically cast a small heal when the tank takes damage. They are a very popular choice for healer, especially templars, but solo very very slowly as they have very minimal DPS. They work very well with plate tanks in particular, have to work a bit harder with avoidance tanks who rarely get hit, and when they do get hit, need more healing than just the reactive heal will give. Healers are always welcome everywhere…
  • Mystic/defiler: chain wearer, specializes in wards. These are like the runes enchanters got in EQ1 – they add extra health points on top of the tank’s normal health, and damage done by the mob is taken off the ward first before the tank’s actual health gets decreased. If a ward expires before it’s been all damaged, the remaining points are converted to a heal. Mystics and defilers work particularly well with avoidance tanks but may struggle a bit more as the sole healer of a plate tank, though it’s certainly workable. They are not great soloers as they have low damage, but can get by with patience. Seem to have a bit of aggro problems at times, the wards sometimes get them smacked on pulls. Very welcome in raids however as they get some very nice debuffs. These are probably the rarest healer class, not because they’re not good, but because they’re a little harder to play and have neither the mitigation advantage of full plate nor the soloability of the fury/warden.
  • Fury/warden: leather wearer, specializes in heal over time. Good all-around healers and the group heal over times can be particularly useful on raids where there are lots of AEs hurting whole groups. Both classes get portal spells to send people to druid rings at 25. Fury gets a group invis, warden gets evac. Fury is the best dps of the healers and both fury and warden get roots so these are the most popular choice for soloing healers. Also welcome in groups and handy on raids.

Scouts (all chain wearers – melee damage and utility)

  • dirge/troubadour: the bard classes, great all-round utility classes for buffing, debuffing, and generally making everyone in the group look better. Alone they have only mediocre dps, the lowest of the scout classes, but in groups and raids is where they shine. Dirges are geared at buffing melee types and troubadours for caster types. Most raids will want a dirge in the main tank group, and troubadours with the mage dps. They are usually welcome in groups and pretty much always needed in raids, soloing is doable though they won’t generally be soloing any named on their own.
  • swashbuckler: good melee damage class (more AE than brigands), does some debuffing of mobs’ offensive capabilities. Like any dps class, welcome in groups and raids.
  • brigand: good melee damage class (mainly single target), does very nice debuffing of mobs’ defensive capability. Like any dps class, welcome in groups. Particularly handy on raids for the debuffing.
  • ranger/assassin: generally the highest melee dps classes, assassins specialize in attacks from stealth mode and backstabby-type damage, while rangers excel at long-range damage. Both can get extremely high hits and will generally outdamage mage types in longer fights where the mages run out of mana. Soloing is difficult for both as it’s hard to stay at bow range (for rangers) or behind a mob (for assassins) when it’s only you and the mob, however, all classes can solo in eq2 with persistence.

Once you’ve picked out a few classes that look interesting to you, a good place to go for much more detail on a particular class is the class discussion forums.   Many have excellent FAQ’s and there are experts playing these classes who can give you up to date, knowledgeable perspectives on the class that you won’t find here.  (Remember to take the posts in these forums with a grain of salt however as this is where players of these classes come to complain if they want a change.  Remember that for every 1 person who posts say their class is nerfed, there are likely 100 completely happy people too busy having fun in game to post and say “hey this class is great!”

Races

You can safely pick whatever race you happen to like the look of, racial stats have no overall effect no matter what class you pick. You may notice some minor differences in the lower levels but by the time you’re 20 or so a troll wizard will be just as good as a high elf wizard, or at least it will if you paid attention to getting dressed in the morning and are wearing reasonable equipment for your class. So pick whatever race you happen to like the look of.  The only limitation on races is that some cannot start the game in some cities – e.g. Dark Elves cannot start in Qeynos.  However, it is always possible to betray to another city later in the game (this may also change your class if you are moving to a city where your original class is not allowed).
What server should I play on?
The answer to this will be different for everybody!
There are however some distinctions between servers that may make some more appropriate for you than others.

  • European servers – if you play during European prime time, you may find these servers are more appropriate for you since there will be more folks around when you’re playing.  To select these servers, you need to change the “region” drop down which is located at the top right of the very first screen that pops up when you start EverQuestII (the one that has the ACCEPT or DECLINE buttons and the EULA – see picture below).  Change the region here between EU or US servers and you’ll be able to play on the servers for the region you selected.  You can have characters in both regions, you just have to remember to change that drop-down to switch between.  Runnyeye and Splitpaw are the English-speaking European servers.
  • International Language servers – there are servers where the primary language is not English.  If you prefer speaking French, German, or Japanese, check out the international servers!  The international server forums will give you more information on these.
  • PvP servers – EverQuest II is primarily a PvE (Player vs Environment) game rather than PvP (Player vs Player).  However, there are some servers where a PvP ruleset is enabled and on these servers you can kill, and be killed by, your fellow players.  Nagafen, Darathor, Venekor, and Vox are the PvP servers at the time this was written they should be marked on the server list with “PvP” beside the name to be clearly identifiable.  Not for the faint of heart!  If you are new to the game and not experienced in PvP you will find it easier to start on a non-PvP server while you get the hang of the game itself.  But don’t let that hold you back if you are truly looking for a PvP challenge!
  • Roleplay Preferred servers – on these servers there is a stronger than normal community of roleplayers, and you are likely to find more roleplay type events and community gatherings happening.  Antonia Bayle is the most populated of these servers, Lucan de Lere is the second PvE roleplay server.  Venekor is the RP preferred PvP server.  There is NO difference whatsoever in the rule sets used on these servers, the ONLY difference is the little label “roleplay preferred” that you will see on the server selection screen.
  • Station Exchange – on these servers SOE provides a secure and approved environment for the sale of characters, in-game goods, and in-game money for real world money.  These transactions are forbidden on non-Exchange servers.  If you want to sell or purchase platinum and other in-game goods for RL money, this is the place to go!  Exchange servers are The Bazaar and Shadowhaven.  Note: at the present time, although anybody from any country can create and play a character on the Exchange servers, the actual ability to buy and sell for RL money on these servers is restricted to US residents due to legal complications.  The SOE legal team are looking at how to sort this out so international folks can do it too.  But don’t hold your breath, no time estimates have been given.
  • Normal” servers – all other servers that aren’t labelled one of the above are just “normal” – there’s no particular difference between them except the people on them!
  • In addition, the Najena server is unofficially considered the Australia/New Zealand time zone server and you’ll find a much higher than normal population there during Australian prime play time than most other servers have.

Once you’ve decided what particular ruleset listed above suits you, the best way to pick a server is probably to take a look over the server discussion forums for the servers that match your preferences.  Skimming over the first page or two of posts should give you an idea what kinds of public events get posted, what guilds are actively recruiting, whether you like the sound of people from the server, etc.  Many of the server forums also have some sticked lists of guilds who are recruiting and other similar information.

You pick your server at the last stage of the character creation process and at this point you’ll see the list of servers and have to select which one to play on.  The server load (how many people are online) at that time will be shown as “low”, “medium”, “high” and if you create your character at the time of day you’ll usually be playing, that should give you some idea of what servers will be busy (or not busy) when you will be playing.  You can also just create a throwaway alt character to check out a server – join some of the public chat channels and ask folks what the server’s like, see how friendly they are, etc.  You can always delete the alt if you decide you don’t like that server!
What UIs and mods are available?
The short answer is that none are required … many are available.  The default EQ2 interface itself is quite flexible – you can open new chat windows, resize and relocate things, filter different outputs to different windows, and lots more.  If you’re technically minded, you can also have a play around with the interface editor and make your own changes.

For most people however, if you do want to add changes beyond what you can easily do yourself, the best place to start is EQ2Interface, a fabulous repository of UI mods that others have made and rated.

I did say nothing is required, but having said that, I’m going to turn around and STRONGLY advise that everyone should download the EQ2maps UI mod, which adds a bunch of in-game maps, extra functionality to the maps that already exist, and lots of useful points of interest marked on them too.  You need to register but the download is free, and you’ll find almost everybody uses this great tool.
Where do I go now?  Or, help!  I’m stuck on a quest!
Where you go will depend on what city you started in, and what you want to do with your time in game. Searching EQ2 Wikia for the quest name will find you walkthroughs for most quests discovered in game so far.
How do I make money around here!?
So. I keep hear people complaining they have no money. But it’s easy! How do you make money? Read on for my short lecture on EQ2 economics.

The theory behind all money making is simple in EQ2 (or anywhere really) – figure out what people richer than you will pay money for, and sell it.

Exactly what they may want to buy varies from month to month and server to server so there’s no one hard and fast rule, though there’s generally some things that are always popular. But if you understand WHY people buy things and what they want, you’ll always have a way to make money.

Collectible sparklies are a great source of income for all levels. Once you know which ones sell and where they come from, it’s easy enough to run around and pick them up. Rich, high level people who just want to complete a collection and get that achievement XP, and who need only one more item to finish, are generally more than happy to hand over 50g or even 1p for certain of the rarer items, or the ones that are found in zones they don’t feel like running around in. Ask yourself, would a level 70 adventurer with 100p in the bank really rather spend 3 hours running around Antonica/Commonlands looking for that elusive cracked Iskar bone fragment? Or would they rather spend 50g and pick it up instantly from the broker? There’s a lot of people who’ll choose the second, I can assure you. Check the prices of cracked iksar bone fragments on the broker if you don’t believe people will pay that much.  I can log into any normal server, create a brand new alt, and earn 50g-1p in under 30 minutes play time at level 4, knowing these tricks.  And so can you, if you take the time to understand what people buy and sell.  SMILEY
To see collectibles from as far away as possible: Open your display options (Alt-O), go into Particle Effects, and change the two “Particle Level of Detail” sliders to max.

What collectibles happen to be selling well varies a bit depending on where people are hunting lately – prices tend to drop in zones that are very busy, and rise in zones where fewer people are hunting lately. At the moment people are paying ludicrous prices for the collectibles in the “Expert Recognition: Faydwer Collections” set. There are tons of people in the Faydwer zones looking for these collectibles, however, which means that all the other collectibles you’ll find which are NOT in this collection, are worth next to nothing. If you’re high level and can grey out a zone like Klak’Anon, it may be worthwhile to run around it hoping for the rare ones to sell – and they do still sell for decent amounts. On the whole though in my opinion it’s probably more time efficient to go to another zone where they’ll all sell for a bit, even if nothing sells for a spectacular sum. Zones like DoF and KoS areas are full of collectibles but fairly empty of players since EoF came out, so while you may only get 5-25g per collectible, if you can sell most of them at those prices you’ll still make a steady income. Antonica and Commonlands have good sellers too – the leaves sell well, coins of Erudin sell very well, and many of the cracked bones are the last item people need to finish off a collection and can sell for large amounts.

Collectibles aren’t the only thing you can sell of course – any treasured or better loot is selling well since transmuters need it to skill up on. Rare harvests always sell well too. Loams and ore common harvests in all tiers sell well, especially now tinkers need so much. Roots are a popular harvest also, especially in tier 6, so if you’re 70 and Pillars of Flame is all grey, you can fairly easily acquire these while you run around doing other things. You don’t need to dedicate a whole hour or two to making money either – pick up collectibles as you pass them, whatever zone you’re in. Harvest nodes when you see them, between kills. It all adds up. If you’re high level, of course, you have more options – if you can solo named, you can hope for masters and legendary loot; you can spend hours farming trash mobs for drops that vendor well. Personally I find that boring as anything so I don’t bother, but it works well for some. It’s definitely optional however.

You don’t even have to sell collectibles or harvests at all, if gathering them bores you – there’s a newish site called LootRun that has some excellent guides to making money through killing stuff and their Qeynos and Freeport guides should give you lots of ideas there.

Whatever you’re selling, you can maximize your sales by the following:

  • match (NOT undercut) the lowest seller. Undercutting just speeds up the spiralling price drop.
  • use salesman’s crates so people don’t have to pay the broker fee — if you’re selling something for 1p and so is Ranger Bob, but you have a salesman’s crate in your home, people will buy from YOU – since Bob’s price will effectively be 1p20g with the broker fee included – quite a lot more expensive.
  • check your prices once a day, go through every item you have for sale and ensure you’re still matching the lowest price. Unfortunately people do undercut, especially with collectibles that don’t have a vendor sell price. Just keep matching them though and they will sell.
  • don’t use stupid prices like 49g99s99c — a lot of people will actually buy from the guy selling for 50g just on principle. 1cp undercutters are despised by many.
  • if there are no others of what you’re selling up for sale, look for comparable items – other pieces of the same collection, or other bits of equipment for that class, and try to estimate its worth that way. If in doubt you can price high and then start to drop the price slowly if it doesn’t sell in a few days.

I observed one bright fellow in the level 1-9 channel a while ago who was clearly new to the game but not MMO’s and had this principle down pat. He asked around, found out what people thought he could obtain that would sell well, and obtained it. Within a day after leaving the Isle of Refuge he was riding a 9p horse. What did he do? He harvested a ton of leaded loams and rares on the newbie isle, and kept and sold all the Treasured loot he acquired. Leaded loams were at the time selling for about 20s each on the broker on my server – 1 stack of common loams therefore = 10g or more, the rares were selling for 1-5g each, and the treasured items for 3-5g. Certainly doesn’t take long to add up. That worked particularly well for him since at the time, not long after the EoF release, there were tons of low level tinkers and transmuters buying up the stuff; prices have dropped a little since then, but you’d still sell leaded loam for 10-15s easily enough, I think.

The message is NOT that you have to be level 5 – it’s even easier to make money if you’re 70 — the point is just that you don’t HAVE to be 70 to make this kind of money. The message is also NOT that you have to go up to KoS or DoF and run around there — that’s just one option, even Commonlands and Antonica have some quite valuable collectibles in them, and you’ll have to find what suits you best.  You will generally do better in a zone you are more familiar with than getting frustrated somewhere you don’t know your way around and die repeatedly. What zones are most valuable now will most likely not be the same ones that are most valuable next month or next year, so the lesson is to understand what comes from where and what is currently in demand and why. Ideally, look for zones that not too many people are hunting/collecting in recently, which have collectibles with rewards that are still desirable.

The final message is that it doesn’t really matter what you sell – and what I’ve listed above is true now, but will no doubt change again in a couple of months. All that matters is that you look around you and figure out what people will PAY for, then supply it. Keep up to date with the patch notes and read the dev tracker, those are often good hints. Watch out for things coming up on test server. If you hear for example on test server that jewellers are going to get a new recipe for bellybutton rings, which will be made from rare gems and will give really nice stats, well, good time to start buying up any rare gems you can find at low prices, and then resell them for much higher once the change goes live. The more time you’re willing to invest in thinking about what people want to buy, the easier you’ll find it to make money.
What do all these stats do?  How do I know what equipment is good?  What about upgrading my spells?


Which stats you need to concentrate on are different for each class you play, and also to some extent on your play style.  In general, you should be looking to replace all your equipment about every 10 levels, so keep that in mind as a general rule of thumb.

Check out EverQuest II Extended Equipment Upgrade Guide for more details on what stats do for you.  Asking in your class discussion forum is also a good way to get tips on particularly useful items for your particular class and level.  As you get into higher levels (50-60+) your resists also become more and more important – check EverQuest II Extended Resists Gear Guide for an overview of what they are and when you need them.

Just as important as the equipment you wear are the spells or combat arts that you use. For the spell/combat art upgrades that are crafted:  Jewellers make scout upgrades, alchemists make fighter upgrades, and sages make healer and mage upgrades.  Do aim to get at Apprentice IV of all your spells at a minimum, and try to get better for your most important and frequently used spells.  Pet classes should look to upgrade their pet spells first: an Apprentice I pet uses all Apprentice I quality spells and combat arts; a Master I pet uses all Master I quality spells and combat arts, so upgrading the one spell that summons the pet has an extremely powerful upgrade effect on the pet.
Should I tradeskill?  What tradeskills are available?

Should you tradeskill?  Well sure … if you will enjoy doing it.  It’s a game and we play it for fun, so if you don’t enjoy it, don’t do it.  You will not be missing anything game-breaking if you don’t want to do it.  If you do enjoy it however, then by all means!
Tradeskilling is not:

  • mandatory
  • a route to easy wealth
  • fast and effortless

Tradeskilling is:

  • a way to help equip yourself (or your home) with items you’ve made yourself
  • a way to create items to help others
  • a way to save a bit of money by supplying your needs yourself, rather than purchasing from others
  • quite a lot of time and work to get to level 70

The tradeskills available are divided into three main archetypes, which are further subdivided into three subclasses each.

Your tradeskill level is entirely independent of your adventuring level and you can see both in your persona window in game (press P).  Your harvesting ability cap is determined by whichever level is higher – adventuring or tradeskilling.

From crafting level 1-9 you will be a general “artisan”.  You can make recipes of all types, from fried frog leg food to tin armour to elm furniture.  (In fact, making yourself some elm strong boxes at level 5 is a handy way to get a bit of extra storage space in your bank until you can afford bigger ones.)
At the very start, if you don’t have any recipes at all and didn’t talk to anyone about crafting on the newbie island (or if you’re a Fae), find the guy who stands outside the crafting instance in your home town (or outside the door to Tunare’s Pages in Kelethin) and hail him (target and press H) to ding you up to level 2 and get your basic recipes.  After that you can buy more recipe books from him, or talk to a tradeskill delegate if you’d like to do a series of crafting quests.  The tradeskill delegate is located in the tradeskill instances in Qeynos and Freeport, and on the other side of the door outside Tunare’s Pages in Kelethin.  Residents of Kelethin need to right-click read the “starting a tradeskill profession” note they were given in the nursery first (or buy one from the delegate and then read it) in order to get the quest.

At crafting level 9, you have to choose which general type of crafter you will be.  You do this by hailing the NPC who sells your crafting books (standing outside the crafting instance in your home town, or outside Tunare’s Pages in Kelethin).  From level 10-19 you will only get recipes for the type of crafting that you chose at level 9.  At level 19, you choose again what your final specialty will be, and from level 20 on, you will only get new recipes for that one profession.

Here are the three level 9 choices showing what level 19 choices they will lead to:
Scholar

  • Alchemist (makes potions, poisons, fighter combat art upgrades)
  • Jeweller (makes jewelry, scout combat art upgrades)
  • Sage (makes mage and priest spell upgrades)

Outfitter

  • Armorer (makes plate and chain armour, heavy shields)
  • Tailor (makes cloth and leather armour, fancy dress wear, backpacks, hex dolls, cloaks)
  • Weaponsmith (makes metal weapons)

Craftsman

  • Carpenter (makes strong boxes, sales containers, furniture, repair kits)
  • Provisioner (makes food and drink)
  • Woodworker (makes wooden weapons, totems, bows and arrows, light shields)

Of the archetypes, the scholar types tend to be fastest to level up, with woodworker, armorer, and weaponsmith on the slower end, and the others somewhere in the middle.

If you want your craft to help your adventuring, be aware you will want to keep your crafting level equal to or higher than your adventure level — equal to is OK for the scholar classes and provisioners, but for outfitters and woodworkers, you will probably want to be at least 5 levels higher.

Each race in Norrath has an inherent racial affinity to certain tradeskills — for example, Halflings are well known for their cooking and tailoring skills; Erudites are particularly talented in sagecraft and alchemy.  You can find a full list here.  These are optional racial traits that you can choose as you level up in adventure levels.  The racial traits are in no way gamebreaking, and between adventure level 1 and 70 you’ll get to choose quite a few of these, so it doesn’t really matter which you pick when.  If you choose a tradeskill-related racial trait you’ll get a small bonus to that particular type of crafting skill, which will give you a marginally better chance of success than if you didn’t have it.  If you don’t pick it, you’ll probably never notice the difference, and if you happen to want to be a Halfling weaponsmith or an Erudite provisioner, go right ahead and don’t worry about it!

Finally, note about the crafting recipes.  “Essentials” recipe books contain your “normal” recipes for making stuff with normal harvested items.  They are vendor sold, normally by the NPC mentioned above that you speak to when you choose your crafting class.  He only sells you books within your current tier (10 levels) so a 19 you won’t see the 20-29 books yet, but when you ding 20, he’ll start selling them to you.  “Advanced” recipe books are mob drops (except levels 2-9 which are sold by the NPC, and levels 50-59 which are available in the courts in Maj’dul).  These contain the recipes for crafting with rare harvests to make extra-nice items.  You’ll generally obtain these books from the broker or other players.  Provisioners are the only crafting class who have no rare recipes.  There are for some classes also special extra recipes at higher that may be dropped or quested.

Particularly useful links:  what harvest comes from where?  And, a chart of what do do with your rares

Other EverQuest II Extended Articles

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