|A Day in the Life
of a Couple of Treasure Hunters.“Ships Ahoy!”
by Elrond the Great, Grandmaster Adventurer
It all began with a waterstained SOS…
||…Elrond the Great raised the masts of his shiny new Dragon ship and set sail towards the horizon. Along with him on his new journey was good friend (and Grandmaster Fisherman) Fistandantilus.”You know Fiz, I have a feeling we are going to be rich men,” began Elrond. “I heard the ship that went down was full of untold wealth…”"Same old Elrond,” said Fistandantilus, admiring the adventuresome heart of his old friend. “You always did have a passion for this treasure business.” *smiles*
“What, you think I’m gonna hang in some dungeon chasing Balrons around all day? Sorry, but I’d rather not have one of those overgrown baboons rearrange this handsome face of mine.”
The men’s laughter brightened the deep blue ocean herself, as they raced towards the setting sun in search once again for the ever elusive treasure.
|Oceans of water have passed beneath the prow since Elrond and Fistanadantilus set sail on this adventure. The wrecks they sought have all been recovered, but newer, richer cargos have found their way into Davy Jones’ locker for adventurers to seek. While much of Elrond’s advice still holds true, some is in need of revision. This task falls to me, Barry Coodah, Grandmaster (soon to be Legendary) Fisherman of Europa
- Rule #1 – DON’T FORGET YOUR FISHING POLE! Still applies!
- Rule #2 – DON’T FORGET YOUR FISHING POLE! (Fistandantilus actually forgot his, and the two men had to travel a whole half a day back to Serpent’s Hold to buy one.) Remember – you can’t mark and recall on a ship.
- You can of course recall on a ship’s key and while it is true that you can not mark a rune on legacy ships the newer Tokuno, Gargoyle and Orc ships have a ship rune instead of a key. These can be placed in a rune book, recalled or gated to. However this is not a true gate in that unbonded pets or followers are unable to board a ship through such a gate. New runes can also be marked on the ship.
The Rule, of course, still applies
- Try and collect a few bottles before going out to hunt. The time it takes to hunt an SOS may not be worthwhile if you are only hunting ONE.
- Before setting sail, plot out your course on paper, especially if you have more than one SOS. Using the UO cloth map, or the Stratics zoomable map as a guide, mark with pins all the approximate treasure locations of your SOS’s. Then decide on the best course for you to follow that would optimize the time between locations. Remember – it’s a big ocean out there and finding even one SOS treasure can take a looong time.
- For those who are unfamiliar with sextant coordinates, I drew up a guide that shows exactly where the borders between East, West, North and South is on the map. It can be quite confusing if you haven’t gone sailing before. =)
- If you don’t have UO Auto Map, GET IT. It is nearly essential for hunting SOS’s. It allows you to see how far you need to go, it gives you sextant coordinates so you don’t have to use an in-game sextant (although it’s more fun, especially if you wish to roleplay) and especially warns you of those annoying islands you might run into. You can also use it to mark your SOS locations with pins instead of on paper.
After about a day’s journey, Elrond awoke from his slumber, thanks to a continuous “plopping” sound from across the deck. Lifting his head up to see what it was, he found it was Fiz throwing his fishing pole in and out of the water.
“We here already?” said Elrond, opening his eyes in excitement, hoping to get a first glimpse at what the fisherman might catch.
“I think I got something!” cried Fiz, just as he pulled up something peculiar from below.
- Remember, you don’t have to be at the EXACT coordinates as stated on the map. Just as long as you are on the first number of the Longitude and Latitude, you can start fishing.
The map coordinates say: 161o12′N 118o27′E
As long as you are in 161o and 118o, you can fish for the treasure successfully, so you don’t have to be exactly at the spot on the map. This should save you some time =)
- Once you arrive at the SOS coordinates, all your fisherman has to do is drop a line and see what comes up. You won’t be disappointed! Remember though, if your fishing skill is anything less than GM, there is a chance you will uncover a deep-sea serpent. If you do happen to pull one – GET THE HECK OUT! Dying at sea is NOT a fun thing. You can always come back to the treasure spot after you clear the area of unwanted sea serpents.
- oh dear, poor Elrond. Actually even GM fishermen can pull up a serpent nowadays, but a few spells, an arrow or two or even a summoned water elemental will soon end the danger.
- You will know your hunt is complete when you get the TREASURE CHEST! At that point, your SOS will disappear.
- During our trip, we hunted 6 SOS maps, here’s what we got:
Three LEVEL 1 Chests (1000 gold, 2-6 magic items, 2-5 scrolls, 10 gems, 15-20 reagents)
One LEVEL 2 Chest (2000 gold, 10-15 magic items, 10-15 scrolls, 20 gems, 25-40 reagents)
Two LEVEL 3 Chests (3000 gold, 30 gems, 15-20 magic items, 20 scrolls, 30 gems, 20-40 reagents)
- Three levels of chest are possible, with just a few changes from those salvaged by our intrepid pair. Gold is now 10,000gp per level, random level treasure maps may be included and additional, rare items may be found
- The kind of chest you get is completely random, so as far as we know a non-GM Fisherman will receive the same chance of getting a level 3 chest as a GM Fisherman. GM Fishermen just get less (even none) of a chance of pulling a Sea Serpent. =)
- Before getting the treasure chest, you will also pull a few random rare items, such as bones, pillows, paintings, shells, and other goodies that would be great to sell to people or decorate your house with. Of the six SOS treasures, we got only one painting and lots of bones, pillows, and shells. I wonder what else is out there! =)
- New pre-chest items are Fish Heads, Oars, Unfinished table legs, Unfinished Chest of Drawers, Yellow Polka Dot Bikini Top.
|“I told you it was true! LOOK AT ALL THAT GOLD!” cried an ecstatic Elrond. He immediately plunged head first into the treasure chest, swimming in its ocean of jewels, gold, magic reagents and magical goodies.”Umm, Elrond? I hate to spoil your fun… but WE GOT FIVE MORE SOS’s TO GO BABY! Britannia, look out – HERE WE COME!”The two men immediately raised the canvases and sailed faster than lightning to their next treasure spot. They polluted the calm ocean air with cries of excitement and laughter as they raced to the coordinates written in the Messages in the Bottles. With the sky a perfect blue and a strong wind at their backs, they couldn’t have asked for a better scenario.
Today was definitely a good day for the treasure hunters.
- Since Elrond composed this missive Ancient SoS messages have been discovered.
When opening a message bottle, on rare occasions, a scroll so ancient that it has been bleached white is revealed.
When fished up the chest itself is also white and is one level higher than the normal sunken chests, containing 40,000gp 38 magic items 16 scrolls 12 gems 12 stacks of reagents and possibly an artifact.
Inside these chests, in addition to the normal items, is found a fabled fishing net. This net can lead to adventures that would make poor Elrond’s hair as white as the chest, for in addition to the sea monsters pulled up from a normal net you will most certainly net a Leviathan and sometimes (approx 1:8 chance), instead, you will be blessed (or cursed?) with a visit from Osiredon the Scalis Enforcer. For this encounter you will need a fleet of ships with cannons and an army of helpers
- When fishing a normal SoS there is a small chance to pull up a ship StrongBox instead of a MIB Chest Strong Box Contains:
- 10Kgold per difficulty level
- Regular Gems 20 per level
- Big Gems (Difficulty *5 + random 0-4)
- Gold or Copper Ingots
Ending on a high noteThe world of Britannia is ENORMOUS. Sometimes we lose perspective of its greatness when we’re recalling everywhere, and not travelling on foot like we should. That’s why treasure hunting is such a great career. Getting together with friends and taking that ship across uncharted waters can be a breathtaking experience – and the spiritual rewards tower above any monetary gains you can ever acquire. Remember, UO is online world where you live, breathe and bask in a virtual fantasy world. Don’t be a loner – get out there with your pals and have a blast! =)
-Elrond the Great, Grandmaster Adventurer
This still holds true! Signing off,
Barry Coodah, Fisherman of Europa