(First draft in progress)
There's so much to say about stats and mechanics that this is sure to be a series. If you've been playing a while, you probably have more memorized about stats than can be found online, about EQ2. All games have some stats/mech mystery, but EQ2 has the most secretive system of stats I've encountered. It also changes, often without warning. Since I'm an underachiever, the changes are of casual interest to me. But as an underachiever, my perspective clears up the difference between "must have" and "would be nice" stats. The most obvious way this shows is that if you're not raiding, my advice is to take all the "you must have stat x at level y" stuff with a big grain of salt.
So let's first talk about some of the "religious" attitudes about stats and how much you should care about that based on your playstyle. Note: Writing this in May 2017, as with all stats and mechanics, they will change. I believe I became less interested in "progression content" when I realized that each expansion ups the stats so much that most of your old gear is useless. That's not to say it's not fun to play, and it isn't a criticism, that's the way games are, mostly, with a couple of rare exceptions. EQ2 is very good at helping a person get back into the game after being away, most obviously, with the sale of a Krono, you'll have enough money to buy mostly whatever gear you want.
Although some people try to play this game for free, I am not a fan of it. This is my playtime, so I believe in "quality of life" upgrades like being a Member, and selling Krono. I mention this because my choices reflect my playstyle, and you should keep that in mind if you play for free. I'm up front about being an underachiever and a Member who spends freely so you can consider the source of the information with clear vision. With that said, let's plow into the attitudes and then a basic outline of the stats. Follow up articles will include more detail about tanks and mages, the two classes I am playing more of lately.
Attitude: You must have Resolve of 200 for "Experts"
This attitude comes from the assumption that everyone will want to do Experts. If you do not, then you can get away with less. The term "Expert (mode)" is the new word for "Challenge Mode" and not only does that apply to the new 6-man dungeons in Kunark Ascending, but also two raids are included.
If you never did challenge mode before, you're not likely to do it now unless you happen to have over 200 resolve and you are curious. For most grouping you should consider that it's simple now to get a Resolve of around 160-180 with handcrafted gear from the broker, and then rely on the Resolve buff of your group members to gain another 50 Resolve. Everyone has that resolve buff and it is a group/raid buff.
In a raid, the buff is about +250 if your raid is full and depending on the classes involved, but commonly expect to get at least +150 if you are raiding. The purpose of "Experts" is the same as Challenge Mode, to help you step from Heroic gear up to Raid gear, that's progression. You may hear some rumors of a raid resolve limit regarding two or more of the same class in the raid, but that's been declared a bug and fixed:
Long story short, don't stress too much about Resolve. This is especially true of tanks where some of the 1 Resolve items give you 24% bonus to Health. One or two of those are worth it. Thinking about resolve needed in various areas can make your head spin. Just keep in mind the group and raid buffs and it will seem much more manageable and flexible.
There is a handy guide to the "minimum" Resolve you need to get into Heroics, Experts and Raids here:
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