Saturday, October 2, 2021

Where To Look For Petalcap For New World's "Weakness of the Ego" Quest And What You Can Use Instead If You Can't Find Any.

As I've been playing New World these last few days, I've been taking notes. I was going to make today's post a list of bullet points based on things I'd jotted down. And then I started doing the Weakness of the Ego quest and I thought I might offer a quick slice of public service blogging instead.

That quest is part of the main sequence, the entirety of which is described by some commentators as "long and tedious" but by me as good fun. It's important because, amongst other things it leads to you getting your Azoth Staff

Why do you need one of those? Ask me when I have one. I do know you can't do Corrupted Portals and Breaches without one, though, and since most of the map on Zuvendis these days is corrupted portals and breaches, I'm guessing that's something you'll want to do.

What I can tell you is that the quest, done at level or in my case slightly below, is no stroll in the forest. Okay, it's mostly a stroll in the forest in that you end up running from one end of the map to the other but you know what I mean. 

The two easy ones. Always found together.


I was curious enough about just how long it was taking to get from one place to another that I took the trouble of timing my first trip this morning. To get from the questgiver to the spot recommended by every guide for one of the items she asks for is a twelve minute run. 

Twelve minutes doesn't sound that long, does it? Let me put that in context, at least for anyone old-school enough to have played EverQuest when it was the big one. It takes about twelve minutes to run the length of West Karana from the North Karana bridge to the Qeynos Hills zoneline. With Speed of the Wolf. For the rest of you, it's long enough to boil four eggs even if you only have a pan big enough for one at a time.

Every step is like that, pretty much. There is a shrine near to the original quest guy and another not too far from the woman (Or is she?) he sends you to see. Shrines, by the way, are places you can use for instant travel - if you happen to have found them. They do not make themselves obvious. Also, since you have to be in a town to open a portal to a shrine, it only helps so much. 

The step before Weakness of the Ego is pretty tough. I died once scoping it out and had to leg it far away several times to drop aggro. The whole scene was like some kind of flashmob tribute to the Benny Hill Show, with player after player haring out of the mining camp with half a dozen angry miners on their tail. 

Why does she talk about "humans" as though she's not one? Who, exactly, does she mean by "We"? So many questions. So few answers. Yet.

I got it done in the end. It was fun. It reminded me of breaking a camp in EQ except I didn't have any of the right tools for the job and the respawn rate was so fast there was no way to clear a path before they all re-popped. I have a tip for the second part, the Corrupted Carapaces, which is to do the ones right inside the mine entrance. I found the miners got confused when they chased me in there and most of them seemed to wander off before they could stop me popping the shells.

The real time-consumer is the next part, the aforementioned Weakness of the Ego. It's a very simple step in itself - gather three things, go to the crafting  station, make a potion. The problem is finding one of those things, Petalcaps.

The three things the quest asks for are Water, Rivercress Stems and Petalcaps. Water, obviously, is everywhere. Rivercress is common next to water but you need a harvesting skill of thirty to gather it. Thirty is not nothing but as it happens I've done more gathering than anything else. Mine is over fifty now. 

That leaves Petalcaps. When I saw the name in the quest I thought I'd never heard of it before and since, as I said, I've done a lot of gathering, I was immediately suspicious. 

So that's what they look like!


I haven't been looking up a lot of stuff for New World but I'm not on one of those "do it all myself" kicks so I have been checking when I'm not sure of something. I googled Petalcaps and yes, it turns out they're hard to find. 

I ended up reading several guides and watching a couple of videos. It still took me over half an hour to find the damn things. The best guide I read was this one, which does indeed show the exact location and describe it quite accurately, and yet even with that much help it wasn't easy.

Most of the guides just mumble something about the First Light/Windsward border and looking near the water, which is better than nothing but really not good enough to save much time. The important things to know about Petalcaps, in my opinion, are

  1. They're fungi, not "magical plants". You can track magical plants with a foraging skill of fifty. You can't track fungi no matter how high your skill is. You have to spot them by looking.
  2. They look nothing like fungi. Not even a little bit. They look like giant succulents that should be in a desert not a forest.
  3. They have none of the useful glows or sparkles or bright colors that make most plants visible from a hundred yards away. Petalcaps are a dull green color. They blend into the background, especially at night.
  4. They take about 12-15 minutes to respawn, should you feel the need to camp them.
  5. They can yield more than one of the quest items per pull. You only need three of those items so you might get away with finding just one or two plants.
  6. When you find one, you'll probably find lots. They seem to like each other's company.

I eventually found a set of three growing together with three more close by. They were at the spot on the map where I've marked it, which is just next to a massive rock escarpment beside the road that runs North to South between the main settlements in Windsward and First Light. As I ran back along that road I saw a load more of them to either side but it was the middle of night in the US at the time. I imagine those would vanish pretty fast in prime time.


Now, to be fair, that guide I linked tells you most of what I just told you and then some but I read that guide before I started and I still took half an hour finding the things, so I don't think a little re-iteration will go amiss. 

Also, I could have saved myself twenty-five minutes if I'd known one thing the guide doesn't mention. Which is that you don't even need the Petalcaps to make the potion for the quest.

I learned that when I got to town and opened the crafting window. I found the recipe for "Corruption Tincture" in the list and clicked on it. Up it popped, with a different set of ingredients. The water and the Rivercress Stems were the same but the Primary Ingredient wasn't Petalcap. It was Earthspine Stem.

I'd gathered some of those while I was searching for Petalcap. I gathered some of just about everything while I was searching for Petalcap because just about everything is easier to find. 

I had the Earthspine in my bags and I was curious to see if it would work to update the quest. On the crafting display that lists the possible ingredients you can use to make the tincture only Petalcap had the yellow diamond indicating it was linked to a quest in my journal but the only way to be sure was to make one and see.

If you see this, you just missed them. Someone else got yours. Wait a while. They grow back.


So I made a tincture using Earthspine and the quest updated. Take that, Petalcap!

Earthspine requires the same skill level to harvest as Petalcap and it is supposed to be rarer but also it is trackable whereas Petalcap is not. And there's the chance factor. I happened to run across Earthspine first. It would have been handy to know I could have stopped there.

All of which goes a good way towards explaining some of New World's elusive appeal, I think. I've read a lot of comments along the lines "I'm enjoying New World but I can't really put my finger on why". This is one of the reasons.

It's been put together with an unusual amount of care and attention. The world makes some kind of sense. It has some kind of internal logic. For a game that's only just launched it already has a lot of nuance and some complex systems that are very well-integrated. Nothing you do is pointless. No time spent is wasted.

And it feels good. There are a few obvious omissions such as the one everyone mentions, ownership of resources, but by and large most things don't just work, they work the way you wish they'd work in other games.

Substitutes are acceptable.

That's a whole other post and one I may get to, some day. For now, I'm sticking with this one. I don't generally do guides and this is just one step in one quest that most people won't be thinking about a week or two from now. And it already has plenty of guides written for it that are actually guides, not just a bunch of anecdotes strung together.

If anyone reading this hasn't done the quest yet, though, maybe this will save you a few minutes. Then again, in New World, what would you be saving them for? It might have taken me half an hour to find what I was looking for but in that time I found so many other things...  I hit town with my bags 99% full.

What to do with it all, now that's another question. The fun is in the finding out. I think I'll start by seeing what I can do with all that spare Petalcap.


  1. I re-rolled on a low population server and I have petalcap that I just found while roaming around. I will save it for that quest!

    I do like how the world makes sense. People ask "Where can I find hemp" and I tell them generally in grassy areas near, but not in, farmland. That's been my experience at least and it's how I find hemp. Not a specific spot because I would forget that, but I look in the grass outside of farmland and have pretty good luck and it seems 'logical' to me.

    1. Yeah, it all makes good sense. Except for the wolves dropping armor and weapons! Why do devs do that? It's not like there aren't enough humanoid mobs in the world to keep us all supplied with cast-offs.


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