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The Raven's Cove Story Quest (RCSQ) is not the longest story quest, but may be the most challenging to date. Many others have completed the quest more than twice; however, both my journeys were quite different and present compelling reasons to pursue the different paths to completion presented here.
The RCSQ appears for every pirate immediately after they reach the level 30 milestone of notoriety. There are a two primary means of achieving this difficult goal: skills and quests. These play into important elements of the RCSQ and completing them quickly or completely. We will discuss both approaches to the quest to better understand which approach is more amienable to you now or for your next attempt.
The skills approach takes longer, but will make the Raven's Cove quest much easier to complete with lots of help. When pirate skills reach 20, they begin to master elements of their craft like much improved damage or damage avoidance. While the number of elements in the RVSQ do not compare with the Adoria's Family or Black Pearl Quest, they test higher levels of competence than many others. There are four (4) primary focuses in this quest: sword, fishing, potion making, and sailing.
Upon completion of the RCSQ, the pirate will be allowed to select one (1) of three swords: Bitter End, Nautilus Blade, or Spinecrest Sword. My first run through, I happened to use sword almost exclusively and had attained a skill level of 23 in sword; Bitter End requires 24, so I could use the sword shortly after receipt. If you like a particular sword type, sabre, cutlass, or broadsword, make sure your skill level is at least that of the sword you want to select upon completion of the RCSQ. Since Disney notes that 'combos do more damage than button mashing', Adding skill points in decending order when possible: the most to thrust, then flourish, etc. While the first two or three skills may get used more frequently, once you become more proficient at combonations, the higher skills produce significantly more damage. The difference between level 4 flourish and level 4 thrust is 140 points. The difference between level 1 hack and level 1 slash is only 50. Upgrading the higher end of your sword will produce more damage and allow you to kill higher level opponents than upgrading the lower skills.
FishingFishing is kind of a hidden element of POTCO. While all three major docks have fish buckets openly displayed by the sea, it is not featured in the other major story quests. Perhaps why it is included in the RCSQ. Fishing does provide great notoriety and many useful sea-faring tools like rams, charts, charms, and treasure. Each pirate must be at least level 5 in fishing to catch the tuna required to complete the quest. While fishing from the docks is a great way to independantly improve fishing skills, finding a public fishing ship is even better. While you remain limited your fishing rod (Free/Journeyman/Master), I think the amount of fish and the quality is much better on the boat. For my first run through RCSQ, I fished from the Turtuga pier and found 1-2 tuna each time I started the fishing mini-game. (If you don't like the fish, just quit fishing and restart the mini-game). Fishing from a boat produced 4-5 tuna each run.
Catching a legendary fish for this quest only results in the Bandit's Sea Globe. A useful bouble for very low levels, but by notoriety 30, most pirates have found a sea chart that exceeds the globes offerings. You do get lots of cash from the fish; however, I do not believe the higher level skill is justified by the globe.
PotionsPotions are a great benefit to pirates during their crusades including boosting damage, accuracy, and even revival from near-death. Potion making can be tricky, but there are definite tips and tricks pirates can apply to make the process predictable, even quick. The RCSQ has a potion making element of concocting a Staff Enchant potion which requires the pirate attain level eight (8) in potion making. Should the pirate desire days or weeks of preparation, they can Master potion making and concoct the Staff Enchant II potion to attain the Burnt Staff. One reason to do this: Flaming Skull +2. In my opinion, this is the best staff weapon currently available with good range, great damage, and fast recovery time. There are faster attacks and more powerful attacks, but this has the best elements combined. The Flaming Skull is the only staff with good boost components. Tribal Staff and Juju Staff add Blast +2 and +1 respectively, but blast does minimal damage and is a directed, straight line attack. Be warned, to become a potion master will take many hours, but the long-term use of the staff is worth it.
While sinking ships can be accomplished by boarding a public ship, Widow Threadbarren demands a large number of sails payment to convince Ned you are worthy to entrust with the key to El Patron's mine. The ships are crewed by the undead and use spectral cannon weapons against your quest. The best way to sink these ships is with a large crew, a very high level crew that employes thunderbolt and fury, or win a round shot cannon ram in the Cannon Defense game. The ram will enhance your broadside shots and greatly improve your chances of sinking these ships.
The Quests approach will not produce the extra elements the Skills approach provides, but I believe that pirates will attain notoriety 30 far quicker than through the skills approach. Completing the RCSQ means one major thing to any member pirate, cursed weapons.
To be completed...