So I'll leave this more list-like and won't add images.
The new starting area, Arete Landing, has some notable differences to the old Newbie Isle (aka ICC Shuttleport).
The quest-line is very linear. You are trying to get a false ID so that you can enter Rubikie. The quest line teaches much more of the game basics than the old isle. You’ll learn to pick up items and use them on an object, place them on the ground, sneak, tradeskill, make and install implants, and more.
There is a “cheat” to skip these quests. See the med suit quest in post two. But the truth is that the new starter area equips you for life on the mainland. I think I’ll be doing the questline on my alts.
- The first mission is really basic. Kill five Malfunctioning Cleaning Robots, and open the cargo box. You get the mission by talking to Rex Larsson.
But . . . it’s not a bad idea to just kill, kill, kill and level up here. These robots drop the pieces for the Alvin & Dodga Shoulderpads quest. Also, you might get lucky and find a Shiny Sword. Right click it if you do, then deliver it to the Greedy Desert Reet (3380, 570) for Composite Nano Expertise nano crystal.
- Next go see Marcus Stone, who needs help putting out some fires. Pick up the fire extinguisher in your inventory and right click the fire. (You’ll probably have to go through the dialogue about “You cannot place this item here. Do you want to delete it?” a couple of times. Click “No,” and try again.) He gives you the generic nano transmitter.
He also gives an optional quest to heal a Wounded Dockworker. Target the dockworker, then right click the special stim in your inventory, and then return it to Marcus. Reward: more QL1 Health and Nano Stims for you.
- Next you see Flint Novak, and he asks you to kill 7 robots. But beware. If you go to deep to the west, you can enter an area where the first boss lives. Not too tough, but if caught unawares, it could send you to reclaim. Also the sandfleas will agro you. Anyhow, now you have a bio-analyzing computer in your inventory.
- Exit to the north if you want to tradeskill a Range Meter and two Poison Injector Bracelets,. (You do!) Kill sandfleas for Venom Samples (2) (But garbage fleas under the market (see below) seems to have a better drop rate. Kill droids for Compression Chambers (2), Hop over the wall, and Kill robots for a Power Supply (1) and an Optical Enhancer (1). Save for later and see the 2nd post for optional quests.
- Exit to the south and run west along the alleyway.
- Either way, now you’re right by Alex Gibbs (3519.3, 856.5).
Now we enter a series of missions that begins and ends with Alex. First, we’re going to target a surveillance drone with a device in our inventory. Next we’ll plant a bug in a houseplant. Finally we’ll take down an Atrox.
1. Deliver the bioanalyzing computer to Alex Gibbs. Reward: Blank Info Chip and Rebuilt HC-12 SecTec Monitor.
2. Target a surveillance droid and right click the Rebuilt HC-12 SecTec Monitor in your inventory. Reward: RC-P Audio Recording Device
3. Plant the bug: Put the RC-P Audio Recording Device in the houseplant in Desmond Calitri’s office.
4. Give the SecTec Monitor to Immigration Officer Bill.
5. Kill the Kneebreaker. He summons Bruisers. I killed him, but then died from the Bruisers. Be prepared for that, or be better equipped than me.
6. Return to Alex. Reward: 2560-Bit Encryption Compiler and Nano Crystal (Composite Tradeskill Expertise). Raise your skills and upload it now. (BTW: That piece of junk machine behind her? That’s the Junk Shop. You might need that for some optional quests.)
- Now we’re given a waypoint to Alan Goodman (3463.5, 883.1) in the bazaar.
Buy lock pick, sneak past the guard dog, open the chest. 1. Buy the lock pick from the ICC Tech Supplies store. (It’s actually a “Vacuum-packed lock pick.” Unseal it simply by right-clicking.) Then go to the waypoint. There’s a “Shift-click question mark” that simply tells you to hit “h” to start sneaking. Sneak past the guard dog to the white chest. Pick up the lockpick in your inventory, and right click on the chest. An Antonio’s Adaptation Factory will appear in your inventory. Sneak out past the dog, and return to Stan Goodman.
He wants the Adaptation Factory, the 2560-Bit Encryption Compiler, the Blank Info Chip, and the Generic Nano Transmitter. Reward: Unprogrammed Identification Chip.
- You’ve also been given a mission to buy a nano container. Buy it, and then right click it to open it. Reward: “Composite Attribute Boost” nano.
- Now, Talk to Sarah Greene (3467.2, 841.0) in the armor booth. Get the “Find the thief” mission. If you run south over the edge of the platform, you’ll be at the entrance to the basement area. Take the left fork and kill the garbage fleas on your way in. (These guys seem to have a better drop rate for the aforementioned Venom Samples) for the Poison Injector Bracelets.) The garbage flea boss is on top of the dead thief. You’re probably too low level to kill it. Just loot the thief and the DNA-Locked Prototype Raven Combat Armor appears in your inventory. Return it to Sarah. Reward: Biological Survey Nanobots
- Talk to Vernon Godfray (3433.6, 823.4). He’s upstairs where you bought the lock pick. He gives you the Omni-tech technical library and a hacker tool. Open up the tradeskill window and place the hacker tool and the library in there. Click build. You now have a Hacked Technical Library. Give it to him (he let’s you keep it) and you get the Cargo Lifting mission.
You’ll find the shipping terminal in the building just west of the Kneebreaker. Talk to it, run through the dialogue, then return to Vernon. Give him your Unprogrammed Identification Chip. He gives you the Blank ICC ID Chip and a mission to talk to Doctor Mason.
- Dr. Mason (3428.5, 795.9) gives a mission to Assemble a Leg implant: Agility, Shiny, Stamina bright, Max Health Faded (in that order). Do so, then give it to Mason for a second. He then asks that you install it. (This required me to have 24 stamina. I was level 4, and I didn’t have it. So I had to level on garbage fleas in the basement. At level 5, I could cast composite attribute boost on myself, and thus install the leg implant.) Then talk to Dr. Mason again, and he asks for the Biological Survey Nanobots and the Blank ICC ID Chip. Reward: Personalized ICC ID Chip.
- Finally, find the bartender Lorelei’s lost pet reet.
Begin the dialogue by talking to the bartender Lorelei (3370.7, 793.7). When you have the mission, buy a Tasty Peanut Butter Cookie from her. Run basically straight south. You’re looking for Lolly the Reet, who is flying around in the grassy area SSW of the bar. Click her and give her the cookie. Then you can pick her up. Then use the tradeskill window to put Lolly in the cage. Return her to the bar, and get your ID Chip upgraded to the Identification Card. Then just outside the bar, at the entrance to ICC is Vaughn Hammond. Talk to him and you’re ready to go to the mainland.
So, in the bottom line, what do we get? Well, we get a much longer mandatory quest line, so expect to see far fewer level 3s in Borealis. We get the level 25 restriction lifted on composite attributes and skills. We get force fed a much more thorough introduction to the game. We get much more stuff in the starter area, although we still don’t get access to a bank, a container store, or the market and mail system. The Newcomer’s Armor now levels. You get side quests (see below) for a 3-slot - 76 CL belt, 3 X 8NCU - 76 CL chips, Basic Armor parts, and a med-suit.
Thanks to Legendfluff for some corrections and tips.