Orion's Belt: A lowbie's first artifact

[Updated for Endless Conquest, November 2019]

This guide walks you through how to get a quick level boost at 30 and how to obtain your first artifact, Orion's belt, at level 35.  Once fully leveled, this powerful item will give you  5% bonus to all experience points and realm experience earned.   It will have better stats than any of the belts you are offered during the new player quest series, and for a few classes it's even better than the exemplar's belts offered as part of the free epic gear at level 50.  Finally, on Gaheris it's especially useful as you can put it on when you turn in seals for the realm XP bonus and use something with better stats the rest of the time (you can both consume your cake and possess it!).

The main reason for this guide is that it introduces new players to a lot of things you need to know about.  Channelers, how to get to Atlantis, how to start your first quests in Atlantis, and how to buy artifacts.  The latter process is especially confusing the first time on Gaheris.  DAoC specific terms I'll use a lot in this post:

Channeler: An NPC that can teleport you to a wide variety of locations.  Channelers generally have a blue ring around their feet.

Artifact:  unique magic items that gain abilities as they gain levels. You level artifacts by killing foes anywhere while they are equipped.*  There are a huge variety of artifacts. Which ones are useful in the modern game and for what classes is way beyond the scope of this guide.  Fortunately, Orion's belt is useful for any class, particularly for the XP bonus while you are still leveling.
*You can also skip the leveling process and obtain an artifact that is already level ten by beating certain high level encounters specific to each artifact.  The Orion's Belt encounter can be soloed at level 50.  However, waiting until 50 to get it makes the bonus XP ability completely pointless.

Glass: currency introduced with the Trials of Atlantis expansion, used mainly to buy artifacts and Master Levels. It was removed with the launch of Endless Conquest in November 2019, but you will still see many references to it in guides to the game.

Getting Started (a quick level boost)

Assuming that you are following the new player quest series, when you hit level 30 you will usually be in the second to last quest hub.  Either stop what you are doing immediately or finish out the quests in the hub you are working out of before you go on.  When you are ready, make your way to the nearest channeler so that you can travel to Atlantis.

Albion: When you hit level 30 you will most likely be doing quests at Campacorentin Station and the Lethantis Association in Campacorentin Forest.  Buy a stablemaster ticket to Adribard's retreat.*  If you finish out all the new player quests in Campacorentin Forest you will also eventually get a quest to go there.  When you arrive at Adribard's retreat, look for Channeler Ni'tul hanging out on a stone dock southwest of the keep, nearly west from where you arrive if you take a horse.
*The dragonfly is much quicker than the horse, but also drops you off on the roof of a keep. You have to run down several flights of stairs when you arrive to get outside the keep if you take the dragonfly.

Channeler Ni'tul (Avalon Marsh loc 44269, 18515)

Hibernia: When you hit level 30 you will most likely be doing quests at Howth.  Buy a stablemaster ticket to Connla in Shannon Estuary.  If you finish out all the new player quests in Howth you will also eventually get a quest to go there.  When you arrive at Connla, Channeler Drolg is standing next to a tower across the river southeast of town.  You can swim across to it, or grab a ticket from the stablemaster to Culraid and jump off the horse when you get near the tower (the Culraid horse route runs you right past the channeler).

Channeler Drolg (Shannon Estuary loc 23357, 30413)

Midgard:  When you hit level 30 you will likely be doing quests in Huginfel.  Buy a stablemaster ticket to Fort Atla in Gotar.*  If you finish out all the new player quests in Huginfel you will also eventually get a quest to go there.   The channeler is near a small outpost in the the south part of Gotar.  Buy a stablemaster ticket to Nalliten to get there. Channeler Felna is on the east side of the outpost near an overturned boat.
*If you don't want to stop at Fort Atla on the way, you can also buy a dragonfly ticket directly from Huginfel to Nalliten. 

Channeler Felna (Gotar loc 50236,  33399)

Once you find the channeler, click on him/ her and choose Oceanus or Oceanus Haven to get transported to Atlantis.

Bounty Quests in Atlantis

Until very recently these quests were for Glass. They now yield bounty points.  Unfortunately, with this change it is no longer possible to get enough bounty points for Orion's Belt from PvE quests until at least level 35 solo.  However, this quest series is still good for enough XP to net you a few levels really quickly (about five minutes per repeat once you are familiar with this chain). 

You will arrive in Hesperos Haven in Mesothalassa.  When you get there, the first quest giver you need to talk to is standing behind you.  Turn around and talk to Destin to get a quest.

Destin (Mesothalassa loc 10139, 15914)

Once you have Destin's quest, turn around again and talk to Wicoessa.  She is standing near a broken wall and some stone feet on the other side of the spot you arrived at.  Take both of her quests.

Wicoessa (Mesothelassa  loc 8272, 16664)

Next run around to the other side of the main pavilion in the middle of the island.  Standing next to another ruined building you will find Astoissi.  Talk to her to complete Destin's quest (726 million XP, 30 gold, 500 bounty points).

Astoissi (Mesothelassa loc 11658,  12193)

Go ahead and pick up her quests, just be aware of the fact that you can't solo them until level 34 at the earliest.  The last quest you are here to do for now is Relics of the Deep, which you picked up from Wicoessa.  For Relics quest head out into the water off the east coast of  Hesperos Haven island.  There will be a red dot on your in-game map showing you where to go.  Once you get in the right area, you are looking for wooden chests on the bottom of the ocean.

One of the wooden chests for Relics of the Deep.  Beware of sharks, 
there are aggressive sharks that con purple swimming nearby. 

Click on 8 of the chests, then go back to Wicoessa to turn in Relics of the Deep (274 million XP, 12 gold, 500 bounty points).  By now you should at least have hit 31. The quest is repeatable for XP and gold, though it only yields bounty points the first time you do it.   On repeats you will also need ten chests rather than eight.

The rest of the quests you just grabbed are all marked level 30, but most of the mobs you need to kill con red and purple until you are in the mid to high 30s level range (at least 35 is best for most classes).  Etaew has a great walkthrough of all four quests in any case. Once you can finish out all four quests, you will have enough bounty points to get Orion's Belt. 

Buying Orion's Belt (level 35)

When you have at least 2000 bounty points, head into the giant glowing portal on Hesperos Haven island.

The giant glowing portal/ entrance to the Hall of Heroes
(Mesothelassa loc 12021, 10414)

Once you step through the portal look for Aphaestia, the Sphinx to the left. You want to buy an item from her called "Orion's Belt Credit."  It costs a bit over 1600 bounty points.

Aphaestia.  Give her the Orion's Belt Credit from your inventory.

Once you have it in your inventory, hand it right back to her. You will get a notification "You have completed the Belt of Orion quest."  To unlock any given artifact you need to both to complete a quest and some items that drop randomly off of particular mobs in Atlantis.  However, once you complete the quest you can also buy what you need from an eagle headed Spinx named Zosyne, standing right beside Aphaestia.  The latter method is a heck of a lot easier.  Buy an item from Zosyne called "Great Hunt, complete story."  Once you have it, you are nearly done.

In the middle and back of the Hall of Heroes are various Scholars, Loremasters and Sages.  You are looking for one that will give you Orion's Belt.  He or she will be marked <Oceanus Affairs>.  On the regular servers only one of the NPCs will list the belt.  Somewhat confusingly, on Gaheris you need to find the NPC that lists the belt and that also happens to be a member of one of the races of your realm.  For example, Albion players should find Scholar Shamira, along the left/ southeastern wall of the Hall of Heroes.  Talk to her and select Orion's Belt.

Scholar Shamira.  If you are playing an Albion class,  select the Orion's Belt
dialogue option and then give her the "Great Hunt, complete story" item from
your inventory.  Members of other realms do this with different NPCs.

She will reply with a little blurb about the history of Orion's Belt.  After that give her the "Great Hunt, complete story" from your inventory.   Hibernian and Midgard  characters go through the same steps, but with Sage Linyive (Hib) or Loremistress Margit (Mid).  Once you turn in the Great Hunt, Orion's Belt will appear in your inventory and you are ready to equip it and start leveling it.  Congratulations on obtaining your first artifact item! To level it, put it on and it will start gaining XP whenever you kill a mob.  It will gain new abilities every few levels, up to level 10.

History Note: This artifact system was added to Dark Age of Camelot when Trials of Atlantis launched in 2001.  The idea of an item that gains new abilities as you level it up was pretty novel at the time, and it would be years before any other games used it.  The next MMO I am aware of to have a similar system was Lord of the Rings Online, which added legendary items with the Moria expansion in 2008.  Much later in 2015 World of Warcraft added artifacts with the Legion expansion, and very recently Dungeons and Dragons Online also added a sentient weapons.  However, right here in DAoC was where the idea originated.

This guide is current as of November 2019.


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