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Question - 120 or AA? (1 Viewer)

Joined
May 29, 2015
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So, recently started playing live servers again. Got on my feet and close to getting 110 on my group. The tank and the healer are heroic toons, everyone else was fresh, accounts are all gold with Autogrant. Now, I know that it gets significantly more challenging as I get deeper into the game away from the Autogrant and the AA gap starts to become a thing. I wanted some insight if people think it is worth grinding to 120 and then doing AA, or stopping at 110 or 115 and grinding AA? I know that grinding to 110 in a lower expac that I can handle without the AA will be less efficient time wise. But wondering if the levels will outweigh the bonuses of the AA, not to mention being able use gear (I'm on FV), even if it may take me a bit longer than it would in a more recent expansion.

My plan with my group is to go back a few expacs and work my way through the group content I have not done. So think either way the AA, or levels, will benefit me there. There's so much content new to me (I stopped really in DoN era) that the need to push into ToL immediately isn't there. Just unsure if going to 120 is worth it first to aid in making what I want to do easier.
 

Sic

"MacroQuest - Live" in the RG Launcher
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So, recently started playing live servers again. Got on my feet and close to getting 110 on my group. The tank and the healer are heroic toons, everyone else was fresh, accounts are all gold with Autogrant. Now, I know that it gets significantly more challenging as I get deeper into the game away from the Autogrant and the AA gap starts to become a thing. I wanted some insight if people think it is worth grinding to 120 and then doing AA, or stopping at 110 or 115 and grinding AA? I know that grinding to 110 in a lower expac that I can handle without the AA will be less efficient time wise. But wondering if the levels will outweigh the bonuses of the AA, not to mention being able use gear (I'm on FV), even if it may take me a bit longer than it would in a more recent expansion.

My plan with my group is to go back a few expacs and work my way through the group content I have not done. So think either way the AA, or levels, will benefit me there. There's so much content new to me (I stopped really in DoN era) that the need to push into ToL immediately isn't there. Just unsure if going to 120 is worth it first to aid in making what I want to do easier.
you should absolutely not go from 110 with autogrant/110 AAs straight to 120.

I would get 60-75% of your 115s before going past 115
 
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I agree with sic. I recently lvled up from 85 to 110 stopped to AA grind till I had most of the Aas. Got snowbound gear and started grinding lvls again. My group is SK SHM BRD ROG ROG ROG.
Also - thanks for this call out. I, for whatever reason, initially thought that the snowbound gear was 115. So in my head I was like, ok, grind to 115 to get this stuff. But seeing it's 110 made me a lot happier.
 
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I've leveled more toons than I can count, and my preference starting at 110 is to max aa's each level. It just seems to me that getting to 115 with or even 120 goes slower overall when I do just levels first and then catch up aa's. Good luck!
 
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Keep in mind the cost tho. I only keep 2 accounts gold, my tank and healer, all of the others are only a few thousand above auto grant. I do plan on subbing them once the autogrant moves up and then i will spend the rest of the month grinding AA before they go back to FTP. You can do ToV content with autogrant but just know that it will not be as smooth as Sic's videos. I have managed to complete all of the ToV missions now except the one where you have to duck, and that is only because I haven't tried it yet. I can do trash in CoV and I have even done some tasks in ToL, but I can tell that I need more AAs on my DPS classes to be effective. But I just wanted to add that you can do stuff at 115 without maxing all your AA's. My pally was almost max for CoV though so keep in mind if your tank is not solid you are going to be yelling at your screen a lot.
 

Sifter228

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Keep in mind the cost tho. I only keep 2 accounts gold, my tank and healer, all of the others are only a few thousand above auto grant. I do plan on subbing them once the autogrant moves up and then i will spend the rest of the month grinding AA before they go back to FTP. You can do ToV content with autogrant but just know that it will not be as smooth as Sic's videos. I have managed to complete all of the ToV missions now except the one where you have to duck, and that is only because I haven't tried it yet. I can do trash in CoV and I have even done some tasks in ToL, but I can tell that I need more AAs on my DPS classes to be effective. But I just wanted to add that you can do stuff at 115 without maxing all your AA's. My pally was almost max for CoV though so keep in mind if your tank is not solid you are going to be yelling at your screen a lot.
I don't even run a tank. Only one toon is max AA and that toon is my main and DPS. The other 4 are cc, cc, dps and cleric. It can be done.
 
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Yep, I hit the AA wall myself and learned my DPS is sub-par recently got my zerkers up to 115 and only autogrant AA's, and their DPS is really low. My group DPS is around 300k-400k and that's with crafted tier 3 group CoV gear. it really needs to be at least double that to handle current content. So, I've gone back to the AA Grind to get them up to speed. A good test I've found is doing Griklor if you can drop him on his first dismount.
 
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Maybe a mild clarification- I think all of us saying "max level then max aa" are recounting our experiences as we proceed through each expansion. OP is asking about jumping through 5 expansions worth of stuff so the real answer I think we're recommending is something like do 110, max aa, do 115, max aa, do 120, max aa.
 

cannonballdex

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Personally I've always done 20% to aa when leveling from 110-115 or 115-120 so on. I found that I could close several of the aa for that level before hitting the next level. Sometimes though you want to max out your level because you cannot advance wanted specific aa's until you reach a certain level. Without going into every detail at play such as class, level, gear, amount of time you can drop a mob yadayada, any which way you set it up, the exp rounds out in percentage about the same amount of time to either level or max the aa.
 

Sic

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Level > AA
I don't think this is particularly good advice.

if you just skip everything straight to 120, you're going to be in a whole lot of pain trying to catch the rest of it up. higher level mobs have more hps, and since you have no AAs or gear/augs if you just blow past everything, those higher hp mobs are going to be harder to farm for AAs.
 
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Maybe a mild clarification- I think all of us saying "max level then max aa" are recounting our experiences as we proceed through each expansion. OP is asking about jumping through 5 expansions worth of stuff so the real answer I think we're recommending is something like do 110, max aa, do 115, max aa, do 120, max aa.
That may be. When I started playing again after a 10 year hiatus my main was 85 and my other toons were in the 70's. I only had 4 accounts and used mercs to round out the group mix. I used the aa auto grant and ground out levels to about 105 and then added two more accounts (heroic zerk and cleric) because mercs weren't cutting it any longer. I finished the grind to 115 and then finished off my aa's. In the new expansion I just finished my grind to 120 and am now grinding aa's again. My dps and kills per hour seem to be growing faster from the aa's then from the levels. If I had to do it again I might grind a level then max aa, then rinse and repeat.

-G
 

Many_Whelps

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I don't think this is particularly good advice.

if you just skip everything straight to 120, you're going to be in a whole lot of pain trying to catch the rest of it up. higher level mobs have more hps, and since you have no AAs or gear/augs if you just blow past everything, those higher hp mobs are going to be harder to farm for AAs.
^^ this is a very good point.

The only way I'd agree that "level > AA" to the extreme, is if you are straight up power leveling a new character on a gold account that can leech xp all the way up until it's viable in current content. But for a straight FTP or "FTP, but with 1 month krono to take autogrant each year" you probably shouldn't outpace your current AA with higher levels.
 
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Why would you go Level > AA's:-

- Better Gear, so HUGE upgrade.
-Faster Kills, paving the way for FASTER AAing.
- Easier Progression!.
- Less Frustrations from wipes. :P
- Lower mobs means less MISS MISS for your tank, Less resists for your spells and songs.
- Easier to PowerLevel Alts later on.
- Better CA$H!
- The faster you kill in ToL, the more chance you'll get a chase item!
- Better PETS for Pet-classes.



BUT and a HUGE BUT here, there are many factors to force you to slow down and do some AAing:-


- You came from previous expansion lacking AA's already.
- You lack Heroic stats from previous expansion and technically not on bar.
- Lack of essential stats for your tank.
- Lack of progression from previous expansion with clickies or buffs.
- Some classes get most of their beneficial AAs at level 120 (Example SK), some get it earlier (example: zerkers)



Set your strategy based on your team's current status.
 
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The clear and undisputed answer to the question presented by the OP is "Yes"
I ended up just getting everyone to 110 and have ground out about 9000 AA since making the post. I set it to 90 to AA and group has since hit 111 and already about half to 112. I'll let them cruise. My initial thought with cruising to 120 wasn't to smash out ToL content to start, so it made sense in my head. But realized probably not as efficient from a time perspective based on some of the comments I've seen about leveling to 115-120.

Appreciate everyone's input!
 

Knightly

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Level is always the winner as long as you can effectively kill the content. Sic and q8 have the right of it though for more details.

The calculation for hit and miss has a level component to it and the experience you get from higher level mobs is more than lower level mobs. So as long as you can kill the content effectively, you will max AA faster from max level than without.

The issue in the last few expansions has been that the difficulty of the encounters is rated based on already having maxed your AA, there weren’t leveling paths so much as content to kill. What people are warning about is leveling past the place where you can effectively kill things. This can happen with AA, Gear, or Spell access in general. This is not insurmountable as long as the lower mobs still give you exp, the issue arises when they no longer give you exp and now you’re stuck in a place where the appropriate mobs take a long time to kill (this you’re not effective).

Personally, I autogrant until max level, but as Many_Whelps points out…that’s because I can just put an extra (geared) out of group healer healing my group.
 
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So, I took Sic's advice a few weeks back when the new expansion hit and just started grinding AA's on my team of six. I'm generally maxed on Tabs 2&3, working on Tabs 1&5 (I've never used Glyphs, so this seemed the least important, at least from my perspective). With that being said, I'm still only around 32-37K AAs on each of my toons. I'd planned to try to hit around 40K at least before I went back to any form of leveling.

My toons have nearly no progression, so I'm definitely going to have to start knocking some of that out in order to effectively move into the 115+ range, I would imagine.
 

Sic

"MacroQuest - Live" in the RG Launcher
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one of the larger problems is the way eq does focus AAs. they are not purely linear, they have "tiers" and you can effectively lose dps by going from type 3'd, max focused 115 skill, to no type 3, no focus 120 ability or in the case of skipping focuses all together, miss a significant portion of % increase in heals/dmg etc.
 

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