Today NCsoft has announced a heads-up on a few progression changes coming to Blade & Soul in next few weeks, including the weapon upgrade paths and some new ways to improve your weapons with gems. Check below for the details:
Weapon Upgrade Paths
Currently, there are two paths players can take while upgrading their weapons, which are described as Moonwater Plains and Silverfrost Mountains—named after the areas you collect the materials for your weapons. On June 1 the final tiers of Moonwater Plains—the Siren and Pirate weapon paths—will be retired, and any weapons on those paths will be diverted to the Silverfrost Mountains path at the next applicable evolution.
To clarify, True Profane will now only be able to progress to Oathbreaker and True Siren will only be able to progress to True Oathbreaker. The path from True Pirate will remain unchanged and can only progress to True Breeze.
Part of the reason for this change is that in an upcoming in-game event you’ll be able to reduce your upgrade costs with a new item called a Nebula Weapon Upgrade Stone. These stones can be used in place of an Evolution weapon to reduce the amount of materials and gold required for weapon upgrades, and can reduce your upgrade costs by 10–40%.
To give you some more background on our decision, in the original Korean version of Blade & Soul these weapon paths were retired at the release of the Silverfrost Mountains expansion. When NCsoft looked at average player progression at the time Silverfrost was going to come out, they made the decision to give players an option on how to progress, and kept the old path. While Pirate and Siren are considered to generally be cheaper routes to take, it requires continuous farming of lower-level dungeons to obtain the necessary materials. The official team think the player experience would be better served by being able to play in the new Silverfrost content, while also removing some of the weapon upgrade path complexity and short-term upgrade costs. With the weapon upgrade discounts provided by the Nebula Weapon Upgrade Stones in the upcoming in-game event, this is a great time to retire the old paths, help everyone upgrade faster, and get players into more of the content they want to be playing.
If you’ve been collecting Pirate Emblems and other upgrade materials for the Moonwater Plains weapon path, you have until June 1 to choose this path.
Gem Hammers and Gem Sockets
A while back NCsoft had identified an issue with players potentially losing the gem sockets they unlocked with Gem Hammers when they upgraded their weapon to the Silverfrost Mountains path. While this is how this system is intended to function, and has functioned in other regions, could be improved. Since then NCsoft have been continuing to work on the functionality, and starting May 11, any gem sockets opened with Gem Hammers on your weapon will no longer reset when transitioning from the Moonwater Plains weapon progression path to the Silverfrost Mountains weapon progression path. You’ll also still have the chance to gain additional gem sockets beyond the ones you’ve unlocked. Due to your feedback this is a change being made for other regional versions of Blade & Soul as well.
In addition, the official team is making changes to the number of Gem Hammers needed to unlock additional gem sockets, and unifying costs for all Moonwater Plains and Silverfrost Mountains weapon paths.
To help cover the potential loss of gem sockets due to the upgrade to Silverfrost, NCsoft have previously distributed Gem Hammers to anyone who was affected. They’ll being running another distribution of four Gem Hammers to any new characters affected with the May 11 maintenance. More details on this process can be found in the Gem Hammers for Affected Players forum post. If you’re in the process of upgrading your weapon to the Silverfrost Mountains path, please feel free to go ahead and do so.