On considering the varying success that players tend to have with questing, and the inevitable switch to instance or mob grinding by those who can’t stand to do quests, it became apparent that there must be a different experience of questing for different players (and indeed, a different questing experience from day to day for any one player). And lo! I have pondered on what those experiences must be in order to give such vastly differing opinions on whether questing is a Good Thing or not. And so I present to you my theory of the questing underworld: the nine circles of questing.
We begin our journey with the legendary first circle.
If you’re in the first circle of questing, consider yourself extremely lucky. Here in the first circle, the quests are plentiful, the objectives are close together and easy to attain, and Magistrate Von Lotsakasch is going to give you a pretty generous reward, even if you are only bringing him wolf ears. Again.
Your quest will have no pre-requisites at all, and the objectives are illuminated by continent-spanning rainbows; the local wild life actually fights any aggressive mobs in your way, and when they’ve finished clearing a path for you, some of them pick you up and carry you on their backs towards your goal. All the while, a choir of cherubs follows you along, singing songs of encouragement and praise which give you a few minor competency bonuses, but generally just make you feel good about yourself and the world around you.
When you reach the villainous bandits that you’ve been tasked with killing, there are no other adventurers nearby. They’re not even on the same continent, in fact. The bandits form a nice orderly queue (there are no unexpected respawns in the first circle, Adventurer!) and take turns in being stabbed to death, each one giving a complementary commentary on your deftness with a blade as they die.
Incidentally, in the first circle of questing, if you’re having to collect wolf ears, every wolf has enough ears to fill your entire quota in one go, they are literally roving mounds of ears on legs, and when killed, they fold-up into a handy wipe-clean carrying bag.
With the quest objective quickly completed, your escort of cherubs compose a new song in your honour, and the local wildlife sweeps you off your feet and carries you swiftly back to the NPC who gave you the quest; the NPC is so pleased to see you that he decides to double your reward, and invites you in for a nice cup of tea and bit of cake, and have you met his daughter… ?