Here I found a good guide for newbies of ArcheAge in a Chinese fan site, I think we should know some necessary tips before we start, so I translated it and share it with you, hope it can help you a bit.
If you are a MMORPG fan, you spend a lot of time on RPGs, such as WoW, you can master ArcheAge easily.
If you are an Action Game fan, you must be good at game control, you maybe can't be easy to master the game, but you will be powerful at later stage.
If you are a FPSer or MOBAer, your control must be better than a action game player, but since ArcheAge is quite different from FPS or MOBA, you maybe feel confused at the beginning.
Continents and Races
According to data, most of girls like to choose western continent because Elf looks beautiful. To be honest, there isn't much difference between eastern and western continent's races. Every character's development would change with the quest line, so it all depends on your preference.
It's inevitable that the maps quest lead to will trigger large-scale PvP, two continents players almost meet each other everyday since they get to neutral zone, if you love to play alone, you might be killed many times, but please be patient, it's the first test that you must go through in the game.
Every race has unique talent(check here) but the advantages of the different talents are not so apparent in the game, because some items are able to achieve the effects as well.
Last but not the least, there is a faction 'Pirate' besides Western Continent and Eastern Continent. And if a guild create a country in the future, they can recruit hostile players, so friends are not always friends, so are enemies.
Abilities and Skills
The first 3 abilities that you choose are very important. At the beginning you can choose 1 ability from 6 (Combat, Magic, Wild, Devotion, Death and Vocation), although it will not have much inflence on later stage, it will affect you leveling speed at the early stage. So please think twice when you choose an ability, don't choose 3 irrelevant abilities, you will find you don't know what types of gears you should equip later. The 10 abilities can be divided into three types:
Melee Abilities: Combat, Vocation, Fortification
Ranged Abilities: Magic, Wild , Conjury, Death
Support Abilities: Artistry, Devotion,Will
For a newbie, if you like melee, it's better to choose 2 melee abilities and 1 support ability, or 1 melee 2 support, or 3 melee.
If you like ranged, it's better to choose 2 ranged abilities and 1 support ability, or 1 ranged 2 support, or 3 ranged.
A character only has 23 skill points to distribute at level 50, so everyone's skills are different even though they have the same abilities. There isn't a fixed skill set in the game, it always have better skill distribution and new skill sets, no one can always win by using a set of skills, you need to find better skill distribution all the way. Of course, game control is more important.
There is no limit to equipment types in ArcheAge, you can mix them up. The same as other games, there are Heavy Armor (High Physical Defense, No Magic Defense), Cloth Armor (Low Physical Defense, High Magic Defense) and Leather Armor (Medium Physical Defense, Low Magic Defense). Cause there is no limit, a Mage can equip Heavy Armor, a Tank can equip Cloth Armor and an Assassin also can equip Cloth Armor or Heavy Armor.
As to weapons, they are kinda different from other games, all weapons have hidden attributes, different weapons have different effects, like Sword, Spear, Hammer, Dagger, please be careful to choose weapons.
There are in total 20 life skills currently, a player is able to level up 5 of them to cap, but it's not that easy. If you are fully devoted to learn life skills, you might level up 2 life skills to cap in 3 months, so if you want to learn all of 20 life skills, just take it easy, you can never do it in a short time, it's a protracted war. And why? Because Life Skills = Labor Force Points, a character only recover 1440 Labor Force Points per day, and a Life Skill with level cap needs 50, 000 Labor Force Points.