Listen. I, too, am broke as hell in Maplestory. I spent all my money on cosmetics and now I have no mule gear. I don't prepare gear ahead of time for the upcoming classes. I literally just got a Sweetwater eye like, last week.
We can't all afford those Star Force maps!! But never fear. I've nearly perfected the art of broke grinding. I've done this on a fair amount of characters now, though I cannot confirm that these are good maps for every class. (So far I've grinded an Aran, Angelic Buster, Luminous, and Demon Avenger on this map! Most of these classes utilized Frozen gear above 100, though for the latter three classes, nothing was traced or star forced.)
This guide is for regular servers, as I'm sure everything is skewed and upside-backwards on Reboot!
Note that these are far from the most "efficient" but they'll work just fine if you can't afford those good maps. You won't need to SF your gear or even use traces on them. Viva la broke bitch!!
1-30: Job quests/Golem Temple's Entrance
If you're burning your character, they should get to 30 (or even higher) fairly easily from job quests alone. If you're not burning, or you're playing an explorer (or something?), just hang at Golems for a bit!
30-45: Beachgrass Dunes 1
Coconut Slimes are good. If this map is not your cup of tea, literally anything in Gold Beach is GOOD. Coconut Slimes, Violet Clam Slimes, Tube Slimes. Just pick a map that makes you happy. :)
45-60: Silent Swamp
Copper Drakes are among the fastest grinding ever, but this map tends to be fairly populated when newer classes release or there's burning. If this map is too busy, walk one to the right to Humid Swamp for an equally good map.
60-70: Military Camp 1 (Hidden Street)
Enter the secret room from Excavation Intermission Area to take on Skeledogs and Mummydogs! (This map tends to crash if an Elite Boss comes, though. So be warned.)
70-80: Ice Valley II
White Fangs are good, though this map gets pretty tiring.
(I personally spend 75-90 at Security System Research Center 3 in Edelstein because I try to get That One elite for Monster Collection.)
80-95: Sahel II or Lab - Area C-1
This is another obvious and commonly used map! Sand Rats and Scorps are good, the map is flat. Easy. Roids are a good replacement if Sahel II is jam-packed, though that map annoys me because the items drop on top of platforms awkwardly, making for irritating looting.
If you don't like Roids, Desert of Serenity can work as well!
95-125: Normal Zakum/Toy Factory <Apparatus Room>
Run Normal Zakum under x2 EXP, from a rune or a coupon. If you can't kill the body, just kill the arms and leave! That's where all the experience is. You can pretty much do this for tons of free levels once a day. If you've already run Zakum that day, grind at Robos in the Apparatus Room! This room is hardly burning, so if you prefer a burning map, test out the other Robo rooms on the floor.
100+: Monster Park
Starting at 100, if you're focused on grinding this character, you should be running Monster Park twice a day for lots of free EXP. You can typically do levels that are 5-10 levels ahead of you, depending on your class.
125-145: Goblin House
This map is delicious for every class, as it has good Hidden Portals, OK spawn and a good place to rest or Kishin.
You can grind straight here or you can do the different sign post quests around Korean Folk Town to get some extra levels. I recommend doing the signposts on the way to Goblin House and then grinding out the remainder of the levels there.
145-160: Kerning Tower: 5F Cosmetic Shops <3>
Most people spend a long ass time in Kerning Tower in that SF field, but we're too broke for that. This map works just fine!
Starting at 160, your options split a bit depending on your preference.
160-190: Corridor 202
A whole shitton of people prefer to grind it out on Gray Luxury Saucers in Omega Sector, which is OK and do-able, in the non-SF room. Personally, I get restless staying in maps for hours and hours. I recommend popping back here and grinding here if you get sick of any of the maps below. (This map used to be good until 200, but a recent EXP change made the gain from 190-200 not so good anymore.)
160-170: Dreamy Forest Trail
I love this map a whole ton since it has a simple path and killing Mutant Ribbon Pigs makes me hungry. The trade-off is that some Elites might insta-kill you. (You win some, you lose some.)
170-180: Knights Stronghold: Knights' Chamber 1
Kill those Advance Knights A, but also be warned that some Elites might be a bit strong. This map is great for classes that do better in more cluttered environments with full-map skills.
180-190: Twilight Perion: Deserted Southern Ridge
Swollen Stumps. Map is huge and great for Kishin if you have it.
190-200: Twilight Perion: Forsaken Excavation Site 2
This is pretty much every player's place of choice. Finding a map might be hard, but it's definitely worth it. I highly recommend saving all the EXP coupons you can for this, as the field typically doesn't burn since it's so popular.
200+: Arcane River??
Anyway, you did it. You got your mule to 200, or 150, or whatever you were trying to get to. Even broke bitches need legion mules.
If you have better places to train when you're an unfunded bitch, feel free to let me know! I'll test 'em out and add 'em to the guide if they're actually litty! Teamwork makes the dream work.
@privateereck for taking some of the later screenshots!
@Aggraphine for some of the alternative maps!
@Babble + @??? + @Jushi for helping me pick out maps when I'm grinding constantly.
ChangelogUpdate 1.2: Adjusted some of the levels, included a different map for 100-125.