If you’re a new player and are interested in the lifeskill aspect of Black Desert Online, this guide is for you. If you’re used to other games/mmos where everything is easy to grasp and explained in-game, you’re in for quite a ride, because BDO is VERY overwhelming when you start out. The lifeskill aspect is only one aspect of the many aspects of the game, and having Contribution points and Energy is a must have for any lifeskiller. First thing first, your total CP (contribution points) and your energy pool are family shared, which means each character on your account have the same CP/max energy pool.
Your energy and contribution bars are those too at the top left of your screen.
Invested CP are family-wide, and current energy is character specific. Reaching a certain treshold of energy and CP is a goal you should fix for yourself and works towards over your BDO career.
Energy fills up on all your character slowly until you reach your cap. You regenerate 1 point of energy every 3 minutes on the character currently connected, and 1/hour otherwise. The higher your energy pool, the longer you can wait before you have to actively spend it (ie be AFK) and the longer you can do an activity that requires you to spend your energy (ie: gathering). There is no recommended treshold (A player like BalzorX have 480+ energy, while someone like mickinX ‘only’ has ~350). What number you should get is up to you, pick one that make sense with your playtime/preferences. I would recommend to aim for atleast 300. In order to raise your energy, you need to find knowledge. You earn knowledge by talking to NPCs, travelling to places, interacting with things, killing stuff and completing questlines. When you complete a certain knowledge topic, you gain max energy (if you press the H key you can see your progression).
In-game knowledge menu
You can use Bddatabase to help you out with your knowledge hunting. It’s a time consuming process and there’s different ways to go about it that are explained below.
Like your regular level, your max number of CP increase everytime you reach an amount of contribution XP, according to the chart below. To understand quickly what CP do for you, think of it that way. Each of your invested CP gives you passively a certain amount of silver/day. The more efficient and smart you are with your investment and the more CP you have, the more passive money you will make. While it’s hard to say how much because of how complex and specific each node/worker setup is, a veteran player with a 350+CP node empire will yield several milions of silver passively (ie while being afk). While some lifeskill activities (like gathering) doesn’t require CP to make silver by themselves, most of them will. The first treshold that you should aim for is 255CP, raising CP after that will be slower. It will become WAY slower at 300, and will requires you months of cooking to get to 350. Pushing past 350 and going for 400 (which is the highest realistic milestone that you can have currently) is the kind of goal a veteran player can shoot for after 1 year of BDO. Here are the numbers for contribution experience :
|Contribution Point Range||Exp per Level||Increase||Byproducts Quantity|
|0 - 14||100||-||10|
|15 - 29||150||50%||15|
|30 - 44||200||33%||20|
|45 - 59||250||25%||25|
|60 - 74||300||20%||30|
|75 - 89||450||50%||45|
|90 - 99||600||33%||60|
|100 - 119||800||33%||80|
|120 - 149||1000||25%||100|
|150 - 249||1200||20%||120|
|250 - 254||1205||0,4%||121|
|255 - 259||4820||300%||482|
|260 - 274||5302||10%||530|
|275 - 289||6362||20%||636|
|290 - 299||8907||40%||891|
|300 - 314||16033||80%||1603|
|315 - 324||24050||50%||2405|
|325 - 349||28860||20%||2886|
|350 - 399||101009||320%||10101|
As stated earlier, there’s an overwhelming amount of information you need to grasp before getting started. We’ll dive into each methods and their pros and cons to raise CP and energy. The first thing that I would recommend when you start playing is to create as many character as you can. Do the tutorial and leave them in Olvia. Their energy bar will start to fill slowly while you play on your main, and this will come in handy later (regardless of what you do in the game, it will be useful).
To raise energy you need to gain knowledge, there’s no alternative method. However to get this knowledge you can :
The first method will make you spend a lot of time in each area before moving to the next. The more topic you complete while doing this, the less you’ll have to complete by doing the 2nd method. The 2nd method is VERY time consuming, as you’ll have to look though bdddtabase for each topic where you get it and you’ll have to play amity games and kill low level stuff. Unfortunately there’s no secret: it just takes times. You press the H key, chose one topic and complete it with the help of bddatabase. If you want to minimize the travel time you can do all the topic related to Balenos, then the Serendia ones etc. Most of this activities will have non existent silver/hour while taking a good chunk of your active playtime. However once it’s done you’re set.
To raise CP there’s a few methods :
The first two are straightforward and self-explanatory. For the third one, alchemy isn’t recommended when you’re new because it has a lot of gathering gated materials, and farming gives a marginal amount of CP byproducts. If you’re familiar with the game mechanics you can probably get away just by reading the raising CP page. However if you’re a new player this page might confuse you, and it’s entirely normal. Even if you understand everything, you won’t be able to get the optimal setup for quite some time, and cooking without a proper setup is NOT efficient at all and I would recommend against it. Let’s say you decide to cook with the kind of minimal setup you have access to as a new player and decide to make one batch of beer (assuming one batch = 900 combines) :
It will take you 9s to make one combine, and 900s to go through one tool. To make one batch you’d need to buy 9 tools and change tool every 15mn. Assuming you take 0s to change tool (which isn’t possible but simplify the maths), it will take you 1 hour and 15 min to make one batch of cooking. Someone with an optimal setup at 1s cooking speed will cook 9 times faster than you and make one batch in 15min. While you make 1 batch, optimal setup player makes 9. If over 1 month, you spend 9 days cooking with a 9s setup, understand that when you get to that 1s cooking, you could have used 8 of those days to do something else for the same result, meaning that you traded 8 days of gametime for your CP gains, because you wanted to cook before it made sense for you.
To not be in this situation, you should ask yourself : is questing a better option for me to gain CP, given how my current cooking speed ? What cooking speed will I have next week ? Next month ? I’ve heard story of new players doing AFK cooking on a balenos tool (which is beyond terrible). Those players should ask themselves : What else could I do with my AFK time that is more time efficient ? It’s entirely up to you to decide at what speed you want to cook, but you have to understand that there’s better way to spend your time than cooking at a terrible speed; and catching up on cooking at a higher efficiency will be better in the long run than wasting time making non efficient cooking sessions. Your mats aren’t going anywhere, it’s ok to sit on them for as long as you want, especially if you’re raising your CP doing quests.
Therefore, it’s safe to say that having a good cooking speed is a good lifeskiller’s first goal, one that every lifeskiller should aim towards. The sooner you’re able to get it, the better it is. I will give you some additional information using the raising CP article to get to that sweet cooking speed. Most of the stuff you need can be bought from the marketplace, but it’s very rare to get it. Once you figure out how the marketplace works, this list will help you:
For a new player I would HIGHLY recommend to do quests over cooking up till a certain point. One reason for this is that you shouldn’t do much gathering when you start, meaning that you can’t make much advanced tools for cooking. When you start, ideally I would recommend you spend your energy based on that priority list until all your workers are professional + :
Note : I wouldn’t recommend Night Vendor/Water Gathering/Digging/Node investing. However spending your energy is better than nothing so if for some reasons you can’t do any of the above consider those.
Having a solid worker network is more important than gathering when you start out! Based on that fact spend your energy accordingly. Following those recommmendations is up to you. While your prefered way to get energy and CP will vary based on your playstyle and preferences, what I would recommend as a new player is to follow the main questlines (ie do what the blackspirit tells you to do). While following the questlines, you’ll end up visiting almost every town. Every time you get to a new town, speak to all the NPCs, and do all the quests you can (I did almost all of them except the fishing ones, it’s up to you to decide which one you do; don’t forget to enable all the quests when you reach lv 20).
By doing this you will raise your energy and your CP at the same time, learn about the various game mechanics and locations, and discover nodes.
Speaking of nodes, even if the worker/node system looks confusing to you at first, DO NOT neglect it and make sure that you take at the very least all the cereal nodes. If you don’t like questing that much, at least do the main questlines (they have a VERY good time/contribution xp ratio, except maybe the margoria one). Those main questlines will give you contribution exp, knowledge, silver, combat exp, gear, blackstones, unique crystal etc. The side quests will give you less rewards overall, but they’re stil worth doing over 9s cooking. There’s a TON of them so don’t burn out, do what you’re confortable with and remember to have fun. While you do those, you can :
One thing that you can do if you love questing and don’t want to do dailies after your done with the mmain questlines is to do the mediah/valencia questlines again on alts. If you want to do some cooking before you have a good cooking speed, then you can make some beer to sustain your workers. Even at a bad speed, it’s not the worst thing to do. I’d recommend to stick to beer beer, then slowly move into imperial cooking when you know what you’re doing. This article will help you out.
If you do most of the quests and follow the main questlines up to valencia part II, you’ll end up roughly at ~250CP/250+ energy, which is a very good headstart. While gearing is outside the scope of this guide, be warned that the mobs in the valencia region are tough and if you go there alone with bad gear it will be hard. Therefore lv 56, awakening and duo gear with budget accessories is recommended. If you hate questing and don’t even want to do the main questline or any dailies, then you’ll have to work very hard on your cooking time, otherwise you’ll make a very poor use of your time.
If you have any questions about the guide or if you find something incorrect, feel free to contact me in the black desert analytics discord.