[EQ2] Getting organized with multiple alts

Or another title would be "You know you have too many alts when..." Whichever the more appropriate title is, the fact is, I have a lot of alts. Now, normally this isn't a problem nor would I make any excuses about it. It is just how I roll! (no pun intended)

With a game like Everquest 2 though this can be a problem. It is just that unlike most other games out there, Everquest 2 has certain types of quests that even if you far outleveled them they still have some worthwhile reward. For example, heritage quests that besides usually having a cool house item also gives status that can help to level your guild. Or tradeskill quests that can give a choice of advanced recipe. Even if the product of that recipe won't help your character anymore it might still help an out, a friend or just be something to sell in the market. Considering the amount of those quests in the game it is pretty easy to lose track of who did what or who has which recipe.

I found the solution to this by hearing a friend mentioning he used spreadsheets. So I decided to give it a try too and initially made a couple of spreadsheets: one for heritage quests, lore & legend quests and languages and another spreadsheet for tradeskill recipes, tradeskill quests, factions, etc. Later on I added one for raid trophies too. The Quest SpreadsheetThe tradeskilll spreadsheet

To make things even easier for me to visualize I decided to color code it. Green for completed, yellow for quest started but not completed yet and red for those quests that I need to start yet.

This may seem a bit overkill (maybe it is!) but I found out this gave me a much better overview of what each of my characters has accomplished so far. This also makes it easier for me to plan. If I am in the mood to do some heritage quests I can just check my spreadsheet to see at where everyone is at. If I am feeling like dealing with tradeskills it is just a matter of checking another spreadsheet. It also helps if a friend decides to do a heritage quest since then I can just check it to see which character needs to do that quest too and join in the fun.

More recently I found myself needing also to keep track of things in a more granular, individual basis. Some sort of To-Do list that spreadsheets just wouldn't solve all  that well. So it was time to get serious with my organization and get a To-Do program!

In my search I tested quite a few but they either had way more features and complexity than I wanted or they were too simplistic for my needs. Eventually I settled on Zim, a very simple, easy to use note taking program.

Zim - fullfill pretty much all my needs!

It does a pretty good job of allowing me to track little things that I need/want to accomplish with each character and make additional notes where needed. For instance, I may keep notes about at what level of items a character can transmute or have links to threads discussing certain aspects of the character's class. Anything that I feel important to that character but not general enough to put into a spreadsheet.

Best of all it is also cross-platform. So it means I can also use (and definitely will!) for other projects while switching between Linux and Windows. That means no more excuses for my lack of organization!

What about you? Do you try to keep organized about what your characters or you just do stuff as you go by?

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