On Test: Go Directly to Drunder Do Not Collect 200 Shards

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Grouping, Itemization, SOE Wants Feedback

No sooner than we’ve posted a long-simmering article about Velious’ steep heroic progression than changes have hit Test which could turn EQ2′s heroic progression on its ear. Brace yourself. Everything you know about Velious shard armor is about to change.

TRADESKILLS

  • The amount of ore received from melting down Drunder equipment has been tripled.
  • Thurgadin and Ry’gorr armor set recipes no longer require velium shards.

ITEMS

  • Thurgadin armor sets no longer require velium shards to be purchased. Faction and coin are still required.
  • Rygorr armor sets no longer require velium shards to be purchased. Faction, refined gems, and coin are still required.

Drunder token armor can now drop in Drunder zones:

  • Grolla will now drop class shoulders
  • Warmaster Korok Hai will now drop class legs
  • Dvuul Ripclaw will now drop class boots
  • Hamslammer has a chance to drop class forearms or gloves
  • Rageborne MacKulla has a chance to drop class forearms or gloves

Ok, have you taken a breath?

We can’t help but be baffled by these planned changes.

The Shadow Odyssey made it a little too easy to get your first set of heroic armor, and then perhaps a bit tedious to get your Tier 2 “pre-raid” set of armor. But if it weren’t for grey shard runs, the numbers would have been pretty much the “gold standard” for how many dungeon runs should earn a full set of armor.

Sentinel’s Fate threw these numbers completely out-of-whack. Hundreds of shards were needed for just a few pieces of heroic armor, weapons, or jewelry, so most players just skipped them and went for dungeon-dropped items which were better anyway.

When Destiny of Velious launched, heroic shard armor was hard to get for several reasons, most having nothing to do with the high shard cost of Thurgadin and Ry’Gorr armor:

  • Buggy dungeons that couldn’t be completed
  • Roadblocky (is that a word?) dungeons that kept all but the hardcore out
  • No solo shard mission
  • Faction required to buy armor
  • Crafters not able to make armor at a reduced cost

With ALL of these problems having been remedied in Game Update 60 and Game Update 61, including a lowering of the shard cost for armor, it has been “doable” — if not expedient — to farm the 120 shards needed for a full set of Ry’Gorr armor. Each Velious dungeon drops 3-4 shards, plus 2 more if it’s the Daily Double. Lest we forget the weekly Dominance quests, which reward 14 more shards for completing a group of 3 dungeons. Getting 25 shards in a day has not been unheard of.

Armor for Everyone!

With these changes, anyone with plat and Thurgadin faction can buy a full set of the Thurgadin armor (or better yet, hit up a crafter). While it isn’t as good as Ry’Gorr armor, it is an upgrade over Public Quest gear for most classes. Further, all that’ll be needed to get Ry’Gorr armor is faction and gems from Kael Drakkel.

I predict a few things if these changes go live:

  • Public Quests will be busy again, as people grind to complete a faction I’d long ago given up on (Thurgadin), and shore up their numbers on Ry’Gorr.
  • More Kael Drakkel instance groups (Iceshard Keep, etc.)
  • More 3-6 person groups in Kael Drakkel contested. Even with the meager 1% gem drop rate, people’s desperation for gems will drive them there.
  • The price of gems will are skyrocketing on the broker.

If the EQ2 Team wanted to get everyone into Ry’Gorr armor faster, they could have increased the drop rate on gems (which are terribly unbalanced — Black Marbles and Emeralds are copper on the broker while Jaundice and Rubies routinely go for 70-120 plat, at least on Butcherblock), and reduced the shard cost again.

SOE seems genuinely concerned about the slow pace of player gearing in Velious. However this approach will likely kill off any interest in the Tower of Frozen Shadow and Pools type zones, concentrating everyone in Kael Drakkel and Drunder, or at least trying. Remember kids, these zones are still challenging and require ideal groups.

It’s also worth noting that these changes ignore the elephant in the room of Casting Speed which Thurgadin and Ry’Gorr armor lack. I guess if there’s one silver lining, it’s that we’ll have all the worthless Primal Velium Shards we can stand, allowing to buy (and rebuy ad nauseum) yellow adornments.

What do you think?

Were these changes necessary?

Could a more subtle fix been applied?

Do you think putting everyone in Ry’Gorr armor well get them into Drunder and Elements of War faster?

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Comments (65)

  • Sole

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    I dont welcome that, i think a better MC gear is ok but rygor for 20 shards(crafted) is good and you get that amount of shard really quickly. But, to think you can go drunder with Rygor Gear is bullshit. Without a minimum of Easy Raidgear you didnt have any chance on Drunder instances.

    Thats the difference beetwen old expas and dov. In TSO you need to know what you are doing to kill pre nerf varsoon on a example. Now you need Raidgear to have a chance of living for a Group Instance. what i senseless. Sure they took Critmiti from Rime, Tower and Kael instances, but its a lot to late, most non raider that i know, cancelled after dov, because the game is now EverRaid 2.

    TSO was for me best addon in EQ2 History, it was focussed to have a challenge for both playtypes, example varsoon. It was hard for raider or a non raider, but does not require any raidgear. Only Skill. We killed him pre nerf with a group of nonraider against the prognose its a raider zone.

    DoV changes that. Like all instances after DoV Launch or now Only Drunder. The requirements are so high that you cant archieve it without raidgear. So in the End this change wont change anything on Actual HighEnd Group Content. Druder is a Raider Only Heroic Instance, no one took a nonraider in group for this instance. I can naturally only speak for my server.

    When here is actually seaking in chat for member to go Drunder, the first phrase in searching text is Minimum 200Critmit/250 critchance. And that is completely not unattainable without Raidgear. Thats bacause in a slow way, for casual Players EQ2 is not more desirable and slowly more server will dying.

    Sorry for my bad grammatik, englisch is not my native language. Its now 10 years ago since i learned englisch in school. hehe

    greets sole

    Reply

  • Isest

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    Wow nice, after spending enless ammounts of shards to gear my 6 level 90′s up in ry’gorr now we don’t need shards to get the armor? I want a refund of my shards.

    This still will not fix anything. Itemization is still broken even if your getting free armor now it has still been nerfed down, you still going to need more of it to get into drunder.

    This fixes nothing other than the need to grind shards now.

    Instead of folks doing instances to get them, well they just will not run pools, spires, assent, tofs, and the likes.

    The need to fix the gem drop rate its crazy, all we ever see when I run kael is emeralds and marbles.

    Reply

  • Sole

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    oh i forgot to say, they should have added Castspeed instead of shard removing, i lost around 60% castspeed because of rygor by changing it from my old sf legendary gear …..

    Reply

  • Isest

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    I guess I should have done a better job answering this

    Were these changes necessary? No I dont think so

    Could a more subtle fix been applied? Yes they need to quit nerfing stuff, and figure out what needs to be fixed with itemization

    Do you think putting everyone in Ry’Gorr armor well get them into Drunder and Elements of War faster? No getting more folks into ry’gor will not fix the drunder problem. We still have the problem of ry’gor not being good enough to run drunder, you really need x4.

    Reply

  • Panther

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    What do you think?

    Were these changes necessary?
    Not needed at all on Freeport

    Could a more subtle fix been applied?
    Gem drops increased would help alot of people gear up faster. With Daily shard instance and the Dominance you can farm 120 shards in a week or 2 (which in an MMO is not alot of time). (Maybe you could sell your old rygorr for shard when you upgrade to different items)

    Do you think putting everyone in Ry’Gorr armor well get them into Drunder and Elements of War faster?
    Drunder and EoW can be seen as 6 man Raid instances – at first you can only do the first few fights because you lack gear or experience with the scripted events / dots / debuffs. The more often you run them the more likely you are to gear up and progress.

    Raiders have an advantage because they have been doing it alot longer and in other EM and HM Raid instances.

    There is alot of content for people that just want to play and enjoy the game with a moderate challenge. And now instead of needing 12 or 24 people you can run a tough and complex instance with 6 people.

    Yes the demands to get the optimal grp setup is high, but then again there is nothing wrong with that. Cant expect to do an instance with 1 healer and 5 tanks like you can with pools and ascent ect.

    The dungeon finder will give very casual players even more content to enjoy, so no need to devaluate the top end of the game. People play MMOs for progression and a sense on accomplishment, and of course the social aspects and amazing story lines. (Hey i felt like a Hero after saving the drowned Othmir pup)

    Reply

  • Silzin

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    I think at this point in DoV yes this is needed and i welcome it. If this was done at the very beginning on DoV it probably would over kill since that gear was still very good and hard to get. but at this point i just dont see it as being that bit of a step up and making this armor more ecessible is good.

    as for the Drunder crafted armor being dropped… that should have bin in from he very beginning. making the armor craft able easier is good but that armor that drops in the zones needs to be upgrades from keal/Rygor.

    Reply

  • Feldon

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    Making armor accessible is fine. Making powerful armor that’s better than anything dropping from Velious launch dungeons available by hailing an NPC you’ve gained faction with sounds like a game-killer to me.

    Yes, you were able to buy armor from Kunark NPCs you had faction with, but it was a huge step down from dungeon-dropped armor.

    Most of the people having success in Drunder is doing so with full Ry’Gorr armor that’s fully adorned, plus ToFS x2 raid jewelry, charms, and cloaks.

    Reply

  • Saev

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    Maybe they wanna drive people away form the game?

    Reply

  • Feldon

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    I’m sure every change they make is done with the intention of player retention and making the game better. Unfortunately the intention and the result don’t match up very often these days.

    Read this interview with Dave “SmokeJumper” Georgeson published on the day of Destiny of Velious’ release.

    The most controversial thing we’ve done so far…is the way we are going with itemization for the game.

    The last expansion, which was not done under my watch, set up some mechanisms for how you could advance your equipment which really wasn’t well thought out. It didn’t have a way of inching forward as players got more and more powerful.

    I think we’ve come up with a way where people can have all kinds of “custom-ability” options on their armor, stay very creative in the way they put things together but at the same time we put the balance back in line and set ourselves up so we can keep expanding beyond [Destiny of Velious].

    So from day one, SmokeJumper felt that removing all the unique effects from gear and putting it on Adornments would offer player creativity and customizability. He uses the expression “inching forward” which sums up the 0.2% or 0.5% meager increases in stats from one tier of gear to the next.

    The intention might have been good, but the result was turning the game into a giant Stats Odometer where items get only a cursory glance, except for which adornment slots they have.

    Reply

  • Isest

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    You know I dont think smokejumper learned from past soe mistakes like the nge. You keep changing the way the game is some folks will eventually get tired and leave.

    These changes do nothing to fix itemization, progression, and yes zone populations in drunder.

    I think they are desperate and they are grabbing at any idea, having lost touch with their playerbase, and understanding what folks really want.

    Reply

  • Anaogi

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    Sole’s English may be creaky, but I think we’re all speaking the same language on this one. :)

    This is a solution for a phantom problem. If the shards aren’t getting armor, what aside from adornments (of VERY limited usefulness) are they good for? How about those gems, guys? Don’t get me started about Drunder!

    Does anyone in the dev staff have clue one what’s going on anymore?

    Reply

  • Disapoint

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    So where was the community involved in this change? Apparently, SOE does not care about the long time players thoughts on the game. I’m not sure I will log in again. I don’t know what I will be playing as every day some mechanic or item or something is radically changed.

    Reply

  • Disapoint

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    Were these changes necessary?
    NO

    Could a more subtle fix been applied?
    What are they fixing? It takes less than 2 weeks to pl a toon to 90 and gear it in full CM adorned Ry’gorr. They still won’t be likely to do Drunder.

    Do you think putting everyone in Ry’Gorr armor well get them into Drunder and Elements of War faster?
    No. They could have put some quest lines leading to Drunder so people feel comfortable going there, and had the Quests progress deeper into Drunder as players gear up. Of course that might lead to player having fun…

    Reply

  • James

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    This is so poorly thought out, I can only think of the wonders of the power point presentation that gave birth to it. Oh, the synergies that must have been leveraged to arrive at this 360 degree thinking. I can only wonder if they thought first if this was a holistic cradle-to-grave approach.

    I made a post on the forums regarding this assanine change here:

    http://forums.station.sony.com/eq2/posts/list.m?topic_id=507763

    Reply

  • Cristamir

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    Were these changes necessary?
    Not at all. It’s the “lets take a power saw to remove a splinter” approach and it never works.

    Could a more subtle fix been applied?
    Definitely, but I don’t think they know what that is. What ever happened to fine tuning and tweaking zones and armor? ~whispers~ Casting speeeeeed….

    Do you think putting everyone in Ry’Gorr armor well get them into Drunder and Elements of War faster?
    Only somewhat. The more talented players will be able to survive some of that content. The average player, probably not, unless that person is with an extraordinary group.

    Reply

  • Chreo

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    I’m so glad I got at least 2 months out of DoV progressing in a regular way up to ToRZ easy before the roller-coaster prelude to the regular earthquakes happening nowadays?!

    Clueless meet panic, panic meet clueless. :-o

    Reply

  • Coopendor

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    Dropping the shard requirement in the long run will be nice as long as people use them for yellow adorns. There will still be the problem of the gem rop rates. THOSE NEED TO BE FIXED!!! I am so sick of Marbles and Emeralds!!!! Rubys, Diamonds, and Jaundice gems, are selling for nearly 400 plat on The Bazaar (low population).

    My main is a 90/300 Inquisitor in full Ry’Gorr gear with the ToRZ BP, a couple of ToFS x2 raid jewelry, and the rest is KD contested weapon, cloak, charms, and jewelry. The casting speed that I lost switching to Ry’Gorr gear meant that I had to use a ton of shards yellow adorning to get what casting speed back that I could. This also cost me a large amount of transmuted rare material (distilled mana’s) white adorning what I could for casting speed. I am still below 90% Casting Speed. I was well over 100% before the Ry’Gorr (I call it Slow’Gorr :{) gear.

    That being said….My guild has completed the first Drunder zone fully equipped with Ry’Gorr and KD contested jewelry and weapons. We had to have 2 healers (plate and chain preferred), and a power regen/mezz class. Counting the tank, that only left 2 spots for strictly DPS classes and those DPS’ers better kick out some high numbers!!! If we did not have this setup, then we did not attempt Drunder. This was usually the norm as we are a casual guild.

    We died a lot getting through the zone the first couple of times but eventually we got the strats down better and can nearly one shot the first zone now. We have only worked on the first couple of mobs in the 2nd zone as we have not had the group makeup to run Drunder lately and the zones take up to 4 hours to run most times.

    I do not like the crafted armor idea at all. As many times as I have ran the first Drunder zone, the armor drops stunk badly for the severity of the zone. Your group will wipe on the named at least once as the strats aren’t difficult but somebody will always get it wrong at least once. You FINALLY kill your first named and he drops…….a barely upgraded piece of tank gear that I guess is supposed to be turned into fuel for the crafted gear?? What a waste of time…..If its crafted gear we are to get then the crap gear needs to drop at least one per encounter, not just the Bosses.

    To get people into Drunder, they need to reduce the amount of crit chance debuff that is received when you zone in. Some of us are all the way down to 30% crit chance. We have been spending coin purchasing a Standard from the Standard Hireling in our guild hall to place at the beginning of the zone to help to mitigate this amount but only slightly. The Crit Chance debuff just makes the healers work harder and all encounters last forever as the tank and DPS need to the mob 2 to 3 times more to damage them. If everyone in your group is at or over 140% Crit Mit (which can be achieved with Ry’Gorr gear), you will survive as long as you have 2 healers that are on their game.

    Thank you for letting me ramble :).

    Reply

  • Claviarm

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    If I’m counting time correctly, I haven’t been playing for a couple of months now, and things like this make it really easy to stay away. The longer I wait, the more stuff they give away for free that I would otherwise have been working for.

    It’s not a reason to stop playing on its own, but it does remove an incentive that keeps some people logging in–the desire to keep up with the ‘power creep’ as new harder content is released.

    Reply

  • Feldon

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    Removing any reason to run half the dungeons in Velious makes no sense to me.

    All of the level 90 dungeons, including Sentinel’s Fate and Velious, should provide SOMETHING for the player.

    Reply

  • Chreo

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    Some of the souped-up stuff (esp. rare FABLED) from SF dungeons was pretty nice. Moved the best stuff out of three chars to my main thanks to unattuning.

    Reply

  • Kruzzen

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    I think what you are seeing here has more to do with the expansion coming out than anything else. They realized that people are not prepared for what they want to do next and are trying to find a way to get people geared up for the mess to come.

    Reply

  • Harvy of Unrest

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    I still enjoy my game very much, but I must confess the rapid and poorly thought out changes do chip away at me.

    When writing a good story knowing a few steps of ahead of where your going with it goes a looooong way.

    Example:
    WoE Armor “shard” requirements being dropped to a few when they were felt good, and well timed like it was in the plan so people would easily be able to prepare characters for the next level of content.

    DoV dropping shard requirements on entry level gear feels like they are just tossing ideas at a wall and hoping one will eventually work for a disorganized plan

    These last few months of changes feels like I’ve been doing my time working towards a goal, and then it was diminished. Or who knows what the next change will be that will discount something else I’ve been working for.

    Reply

  • Kaufman

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    Uhhh… why do any dungeons other than KD anymore? What am I going to do with my 250 velium shards? Why even have velium shards in the game?

    Trade shards for gems, trade shards for plat, hell, trade shards for AAXP turn ins when the new cap hits, offer high end gear for a large # of shards. Shards to ore to get drunder gear. Something…

    Reply

  • Harvy of Unrest

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    Also… on another note, the frustration I have with heroic Drunder zones, is it just feels like the equipment you need to complete them is better than what drops (Except for the rare mob). I’m all for progression, but the point of it should be to “battle zone ‘a’ until you have the equipment\skill to finish ‘b’ so then you have the equipment\skill to finish ‘c’….”

    Where now it feels like “Battle zone ‘a’ until you have enough equipment from raids so you then can battle zone ‘b’ until you have even more equipment from raids to battle zone ‘c’…”

    arg :(

    Reply

  • Viperwolf

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    ARGHHH!
    Annoyed at changes..
    Annoyed at the carebear comments above!

    Why give away gear? – it really wasn’t that hard to get if you had a clue.
    I know many players (including myself) that farmed Drunder 1 & 2 in guess what…..RYGORR armor! upgraded forearms/boots/gloves then shoulders/head…
    Then moved on and cleared D3, completed the signiture quest.

    New armor, new jewelry and a nice cloak.
    PLEASE can someone tell me what has been holding back the posters above from doing these zones long long ago??

    The CC an CM requirements are NOT that high and do NOT require x4 gear. For sure you needed to upgrade with D1/D2 crafted armor before beating the last named in D2 but whats the issue with that?

    Why do SOE continually nerf harder content to appease players that probably struggle to tie their own shoelaces :( Surely its better to have moderately challenging content?

    Reply

  • Karith

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    I’m sorry if this is lengthy, but here is what I’ve gathered about Gem drops in Velious.

    -Every gem has a 0.1667% chance to drop from NON-Thrael’Gorr Orc in Kael Drakkel Contested.
    -Every gem has a 0.8333% to drop from a named in Kael Drakkel Contested.

    Helm-Black Marble Gem
    -This gem has a 50% chance at dropping from the NON-end boss named of all Iceshard Keep, Throne of Storms, and The Temple of Rallos Zek.

    Gloves-Emerald Gem
    -This gem has a 50% chance at dropping from the NON-end boss named of all Iceshard Keep, Throne of Storms, and The Temple of Rallos Zek.

    Leggings-Lava Ruby Gem
    -This gem has a 50% chance at dropping from the end boss named of all Iceshard Keep, Throne of Storms, and The Temple of Rallos Zek.

    Spaulders-Diamond Gem
    -This gem has a 50% chance at dropping from the end boss named of all Iceshard Keep, Throne of Storms, and The Temple of Rallos Zek.

    Boots-Jaundice Gem
    -2.5% chance to drop from any trash mob in Iceshard Keep or Throne of Storm.

    Bracers-Citrine Gem
    -2.5% chance to drop from any trash mob in Iceshard Keep or Throne of Storm.

    Reply

  • Dawn

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    To be honest this is welcome news for me as I’m on Nagafen and have been completely annoyed with all the grinding that has to be done for getting the awesome set of PVP gear and then another grind for getting the awesome sets) of PVE gear.

    Since my guild imploded over two months ago just after I got my first alt to 90 I gave up on the overly complicated process of getting groups together, figuring out shards, getting my butt handed to me at PQ’s desperately trying to get some basic gear etc. I’m only halfway through faction to get PVP gear. My BF on the other hand has spent the last two months doing all the slogging and grinding while I’ve spent my time decorating. Now we can barely group together. I’m ready to get out of the houses and guild halls to catch up and now there may be something for me to look forward to in this game again instead of considering canceling my subscription.

    Reply

  • Lexing

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    If the goal is to get more players into Drunder, this isn’t the answer. Since Drunder was released the problem has been that heroic-geared players are not powerful enough to clear it, or even farm the first instance to improve.

    Making the Rygorr gear essentially free doesn’t ameliorate this problem. Anyone who didn’t have it already is probably a soloer and either A) not ready for Drunder or B) not interested.

    Reply

  • James

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    @Dawn,

    Why not transfer to AB. I swear there are more people on AB from naggy then on naggy now. We have like five in our guild.

    Reply

  • Dawn

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    Oh funny you mention transferring, I do want to transfer to AB however, I still want to play with my bf and I also have 5 level 90 crafters and a level 30 geared out in full PVP. At what, $25 per alt it’s too expensive to move them all over. And I still would like to eventually finish my faction and get fully geared in 90 PVP gear and not be afraid to step out of my guild hall someday soon. The thing is I have to choose what I’m going to spend my time on, PVP, PVE gear, decorating, I have a full time job as it is, I’d rather not have antoher one with the game. But I can understand how the folks that like that sort of grind or have already grinded out their gear would be miffed at a change like this.

    Reply

  • Feldon

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    Originally posted by Kruzzen:

    I think what you are seeing here has more to do with the expansion coming out than anything else. They realized that people are not prepared for what they want to do next and are trying to find a way to get people geared up for the mess to come.

    Unless they’re keeping a secret, there are no new level 90 instances or raids planned for October – February. It’s an odd time to funnel everyone into Drunder 1-3 and Elements of War.

    Why will anyone run Pools, Ascent, ToFS 1-3, Crystal Caverns anymore if they can hail an NPC or befriend a crafter and have full Ry’Gorr armor?

    I predict that PR runs are going to dramatically increase so people can fund their characters with Gems, and then a month from now, SOE will nerf PR to drop 1p per named. I think you’ll also see a lot of people buying plat in the next few days.

    Reply

  • Necromancer

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    Hate to break it to everyone, but this is just a ploy to get people to use the create your own dungeon feature that will launch in just 5 weeks with Age of Discovery. Because, really think about this one – the EQ2 development team has just now made ALL the Great Divide instances completely worthless. The entire reason why people bothered with them was for the white velium shards for armor. But now, with both Thurgadin and Ry’Gorr armor requiring no shards, what is the point in running any of those zones?

    Then, consider that both the Kael and Drunder instances are still challenging, and even with Ry’Gorr armor unless you go in there with people who know what they are doing, you’re not going to be able to do those zones. So, you have instances that are now completely worthless to run, and instances that are still too hard for the casual player – what exactly are you suppose to do? Use the create a dungeon feature.

    I’ve been dealing with Sony Online Entertainment for over 12 years now. I know exactly how they think, and I know the real reason behind everything they do. If they destroy the content of one thing, it’s because they want people to use the content of something else, in this case they want people to use the create a dungeon featuring launching with Age of Discovery in 5 weeks.

    Reply

  • Inque

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    I wouldn’t be surprised Necromancer, but personally i think that the “Create a Dungeon” will be a massive flop as you cannot run them on your own character, but have to use NPC “pets”. Whilst that is the case I will not be using it myself.

    Reply

  • James

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    @Dawn

    If you or your boyfriend ever decide to transfer, send me (Etruscus) a tell, or cross-server chat. If my guild isn’t a fit, I know plenty others that might fit into your style of play / timezone whatever that may be.

    Reply

  • Coopendor

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    @ Viperwolf:

    I agree with you nearly completely. They should not be giving gear away. Getting the shards is much too easy. The gem drops can get somewhat tedious when gearing up your group though.

    However….I would be willing to bet that you have a very consistent group of players that you are with all the time that do know how to play their characters well. Not everyobody has that opportunity to group with that kind of skill level. I think SOE is trying to get more groups into those Drunder zones. Removing the shard requirement for the Ry’Gorr gear is not the right way in my opinion. Lowering the Crit Chance requirement would be a big help without nerfing the zone too much.

    Just my opinion, I mean, what the hell do I know :)

    Reply

  • Whilhelmina

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    Mmmh, I think the goal here is to have players runing Drunder, so getting shards to get drunder shard gear. But as you need to have Ry’Gorr armor to go to Drunder, well, the Ry’gorr armor is now easy to get?

    Shards are needed for Drunder armor, and you’ll need more shards than for Ry’Gorr and the armor is better as far as I know so the changes make sense to me. (Don’t hit! I’m in quested gear and don’t run dungeons so I could be wrong)

    Reply

  • Blupo

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    this will help alot of people, i can’t count how many groups i’ve gotten in to go to easy zones like tofs or fortress for dom updates only to get booted when gettin to zone because i only have gear from public raids and ascent/pools, being told sorry your gear is crap so you can’t group with us.

    Reply

  • Aethn

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    Its been 9+ months, its the same thing they do in almost every other game out there. After a period of time you take the old content and make it more accesible to move more of the playerbase along that road. This makes perfect sense and its about time SOE learned this.

    Besides, no one is going to raid Drunder in Rygorr, all this is doing is making it easier to get a group into the MINIMUM gear required ot raid the zones prior to Drunder to gear up.

    Reply

  • Liftik

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    @ Necromancer,the problem with your idea that SoE is funneling all of us to use their Dungeon Builder is that players *will not* be allowed to take their own characters through player made dungeons created via ‘Create your own Dungeon’. SoE has already stated that you will only be able to run pre-made avatars through those dungeons in order to win some kind of ‘meta-cash’ to purchase items and gear foryour characters. Think battlegrounds but you can’t play your own character you’ve worked so hard on…. for me? No Thanks!

    As for the problem currently on the table, I don’t think these changes are necessary. If you work hard enough through PQ’s to get PQ gear, you then progress to instances to get shards for ry’gorr gear (very obtainable with shard quests, Daily Dbls and Dom quests).. Then start doing Kael zones. What *NEEDS* to be fixed is the non-emerald, non-black marble gem drop rate, add casting and reuse speed to Ry’gorr armor, and if you want peiople in Drunder so bad SoE, adjust the difficuly on those zones just a little.

    Hope SoE reads all of these comments

    Reply

  • Necromancer

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    I’m fully informed with everything regarding the Create a Dungeon feature – it’s no different from the monster missions that were introduced in EQ, except players will be able to create their own dungeons, but the concept of using pre-rendered avatars and receiving some type of reward at the end is the same concept introduced with monster missions in the original EQ. But you’re missing my point – if the casual player is still not capable of doing the Kael and Drunder instances, and GD instances are now completely worthless, where exactly does that leave the casual player, which comprises most of the EQ2 population?

    It leaves them to do the create a dungeon.

    Reply

  • Taka

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    Why did pq gear have set bonuses and neither Thurgadin nor Ry’gorr have set bonuses? How about differentiating the tiers with effects (like the aforementioned casting speed and the return of set bonuses?) Additionally, if we going adornment happy. Give me an extra yellow/white slot in the same tier of gear. That’ll differentiate gear that looks the same but allow full customization. What might be bad though is white white white yellow yellow yellow. -> white white white yellow yellow red. It could be a pain and expensive to re-adorn all that.

    And anyone beat SpareRib in Citadel of Vuul x2 yet? Not I. That’s such a strange fight to learn.

    Reply

  • Isest

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    Who the heck wants to run a dungeon with some pre rendered avatar, I want to run using my characters. Im sure most other folks do to. So now were all messed over if thats the case. Nobody is going to be running dov instances unless they are kale or drunder, same as sf instances and they are only run now when somebody needs an er update.

    Reply

  • Zorblack

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    Gear will not fix the inept players running these zones. I’m sorry I had no problem doing pools/velk/sc as a lvl 88-90 in DoV quested gear with lesser adorns a month into the expansion. I had no problem doing ISK/ToS/ToRZ in mostly ry’gorr gear with greater adorns 3 months into the expansion. Full ry’gorrs with greater adorns and the proper usage of yellow adorns and we progressed though Drunder a month into GU60. People don’t know how to play their classes and they don’t know how to make proper groups that is the problem.

    I’m not saying that the curve isn’t steep, I understand that your mage in 50% ry’gorr with no crit mit adorns gets aoe one shotted. Sorry DoV is an epic expansion. You’re fighting the smartest least nerfed giants on Norrath. You’re fighting Demi Gods. You’re entering another plane of existance and fighting a god. IT IS SUPPOSE TO BE HARD! Mortals in common gear with common skills should not be able to take on demi gods & gods.

    Last thing… you can throw out the whole treasured->legendary->fabled bs… Everything is legendary.. you know why? Because it makes the freeport server spend money on gold accounts and unlocks. They purposely shifted the quality and title of gear. PQ gear is treasured, Ry’Gorrs is T1 Legendary and Drunder is T2 Legendary.

    Stop doing Drunder with a bad healer who can’t cure, 2 undergeared tanks, and 3 wizards spamming solar flare.

    Reply

  • stwsr

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    I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, Smokejumper needs to be fired ASAP. He’s caused more than enough long-time players to quit the game for good.

    Reply

  • Grump

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    Smokejumper and this whole itemization debacle of this last expansion needs to be ripped out and replaced. I am so sick of this gear same old gear template, there is no customization. In the past there were reasons to run instances, when having an item from a heroic zone or quest could be unique even to a raider. As a raider, I have had no need to run heroic zones other than to get a few shards for my yellow adornments for my hard mode gear. It’s a disaster and the template of same old $hit needs to go.

    Reply

  • Murfalad

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    Were these changes necessary?

    No, the problem isn’t people progressing to get Ry’gor gear, at 20 shards an item it was attainable at a nice pace.

    The problem is that the gap between ascent and a Kael zone is too large and the best gear people can get stops at Ry’gor with shards.

    Could a more subtle fix been applied?

    Yep, I would have left Ry’gor more or less where it was, and added in a new tier (identical looks, but maybe with set bonuses and have the Ry’gor gear traded in with shards for it.

    At say 40-60 shards an item it would give something new to upgrade to, I’d also put in some new shields and other items for 40-60 shards to bridge the gap to Drunder/Kael (good players can do these zones straight away with Ry’gor + tofsx2 gear, average players can overgear and do them by getting shards.

    Do you think putting everyone in Ry’Gorr armor well get them into Drunder and Elements of War faster?

    Nope, because I think most people will find these zones too hard with Ry’gor gear. Lacking any option to carry on progression they’ll just be stuck.

    Overall I’m not impressed with these changes, there is a problem there, but this isn’t the solution. The solution is not to shower players with free loot, its to instead give them some more progression they can earn with the shards.

    I see this change creating a quick 2-3 week surge in activity followed by people no longer running Rime and Tower instances anymore but not being able to handle Kael and drunder.

    Hopefully they’ll give it a re-think.

    Reply

  • Striinger

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    Were these changes necessary?
    Absolutely not, unless the intent is to discount the work people who EARN their gear have put in, trivialize dungeon drops, and make shards somewhat pointless.

    Could a more subtle fix been applied?
    It really all depends on their objective. If it’s to prepare people for Drunder…well, most people ARE able to do Drunder if they aren’t gimp players. People don’t run Drunder because the gear it drops IS GIMP. It’s a marginal increase, at best, on the Ry’gor stuff.
    More subtle would have been giving each player a quest when they first earn faction with ry’gor that awards a ry’gor armor crate when they reach 40k faction!

    Do you think putting everyone in Ry’Gorr armor will get them into Drunder and Elements of War faster?
    It may get some people rushing in there who think the armor is all you need. They’ll get discouraged fast when they realise they need the armor, belts, cloaks, etc. to get their cast speed and other stats up. THEN they’ll realize that unless they fully adorn (appropriately) they STILL can’t run it. Before they get to that point…people will gripe more about Drunder still being undoable…and eventually it may be nerfed down to a point where the gear that drops in there is a big upgrade for people who are trying it.

    GU62 is supposed to release a bunch of new content…and possibly this is why they are giving people gear. Since you can BUY the faction tokens for Ry’gor, you only have to do it on one toon per account, ever, to get a full set of ry’gor gear. As for gems…really? They aren’t THAT hard to get…and only the last couple of named in Temple of Zek (and maybe the last encounter in Throne) require more than 3 or 4 capable players in moderate gear.

    I believe, as Feldon has suggested, that this could very well be a game-killer…or at LEAST a good way to kill their dungeon finder project.

    Wouldn’t it have been better for them to just unify tokens by tier so running the Dungeon Finder dungeons at level 90 would yield white shards quickly? I would have maybe considered running the SF dungeons if I got white shards for some alts. Why bother now? With several hundred shards on every account…what do I need them for now? Adorns? I don’t change yellow adorns THAT often.

    FELDON please try to talk some sense into these guys. I know they DO listen to you from time to time.

    Reply

  • Feldon

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    Originally posted by STRIINGER:

    FELDON please try to talk some sense into these guys. I know they DO listen to you from time to time.

    Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

    *breathe*

    Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

    My thumbnail response to this change is “It’s the Ry’Gorr gems, stupid!”

    If you want to know what’s keeping people out of Ry’Gorr gear, it’s not shards. And if you want to know what’s keeping people out of Drunder, read yesterday’s article. After this change, why would anyone run Pools, Ascent, ToFS 1-3, etc.? But casuals aren’t going to have any more success in Drunder. This change just squeezes casuals from both ends.

    There are now thirty level 90 dungeons. Why isn’t the dev team doing all they can to make all 30 of them relevant? Why does the EQ2 dev team seem hell-bent on concentrating all players in just four of those thirty dungeons?

    Reply

  • Necromancer

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    Because it means a lot less work for them to do.

    Reply

  • Daffodil

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    My impression is that there’s a big wheel somewhere with options on it instead of numbers. Someone spins it, and where it lands, that’s what they do. There’s no feeling of any kind of organisation or progression, just random chaos.

    Reply

  • Phia@Nagafen

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    As a recently returned player I think I have some current experience which is relevant to this issue. Me and 2 friends came back to the game after quitting right on DoV launch.

    We are trying to gear up for drunder/eow (heroic) and so getting ry’gorr and drunder gear is of great interest to us. The main hurdle for getting ry’gorr gear is absolutely the shards, NOT the gems. We have done only iceshard keep twice, no other KD instances and no KD contested. In our second iceshard keep run we haven’t even killed the end boss (we don’t have enough dps to 3 man him). In that 1.9 iceshard keep runs we’ve gotten enough gems for all 3 of us to have every gem except ruby/diamond, and I have a diamond. So we need 3 more rubies and 2 more diamonds only for all 3 of us to complete our sets. I even have enough spare gems to get 4 pieces of ry’gorr for one of my alts.

    The shards however are another matter. I’ve gotten around 100 shards so far which have gotten me 1 ry’gorr piece, 2 fableds from the ry’gorr vendor and a bunch of yellow adorns. I’ve currently been saving up shards for my 2nd ry’gorr piece but thankfully I can just save them up now and buy all the yellow adorns I need once this patch goes live.

    Anyway in summary, thumbs up to this change.

    Reply

  • Tarb

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    I never thought EQ2 would surpass WoW in easy mode giving away gear but my god they have actually done it if this goes though :(

    Reply

  • Sigtyr

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    I remember a game where me and my wife could log in and do a shared dungeon that was moderately challenging and actually gave loot and then you could do the next dungeon and have fun. Now it is a game that requires a spreadsheet to play, and they still are unable to find a balance. We have not subbed in a year and it seems unlikely that we ever will again. I truly do not know what the target buyer group is at the moment, and I challenge anyone to do a decent writeup on the target customer of eq2.

    Dunno loved this game once, but the game obviously did not think I was important. The target group today is . . .?

    Reply

  • Aethn

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    Smokejumper is the best thing that has happened to EQ and SOE,the whiners just dont like it when things change that bring a higher population into the game and threaten there little Eutopia they think they have built.

    If not for these changes, EQ2 would have had to go 100% Free to Play a year ago, SOE is bleeding money and showing a major loss quarter after quarter. How long do you think SONY the parent company will keep this sining ship floating if they dont make changes?

    Reply

  • Me

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    This change does not and won’t help the “bottom tier” player get to other zones. As many have stated before to do Drunder without already having raid gear you need to have the best of all archetypes in your group to succeed. What does that mean for T2 DPS when there are only 2 spots available because you have 2 healers and tank and CC/regen? It means we are passed up for groups since we dont put out the 80k+ parses that the T1 DPS classes do.

    Reply

  • Derelict

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    After reading all the above comments I would like to add a point about solo’ers/rare groupers.

    This is a huge game ender imo.. Once you get 300 aa and then the gear handed to you for a few plat there is nothing left for soloers.. You already have the best gear you will see soloing .. It’s not even like you can go and solo some SF dungeons for upgrades as there is nothing there for you to upgrade with..

    Currently I log on every morning with my coffee and do the daily shard quest.. I have ally with Thurg and Rygorr so I dont do any of the daily faction quests. Once I am done I do a quick ooa run for some plat then log out and play an Alt.. At least I was required to do something to get shards to upgrade..

    When this goes live I will login buy the couple rygorr items i still need.. go try and solo deathknoll or whatever then log out.. yeap now what?

    I got the powerup and won the game WOOT ..

    Game over man .. Game over

    Reply

  • Baraka

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    Aethn I’m so tired of hearing this. Where are all these “new people” coming year after year to eq2? Everyone that plays the game has had the game for years and more than likely played eq1. These changes have done nothing but get people to stop subbing and btw EQ2 did go f2p a while ago…

    Reply

  • Striinger

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    Do all of the people demanding cast speed and reuse on free-gore gear actually PLAY the game other than leeching at PQ? Work on your jewelry and stuff. They also have these items called adorns. Dethdlr made it beyond easy to figure those out. And if you don’t use adorns cause they cost too much then work up you own. You can play this game by being cheap, lazy or stupid but you can only be one.

    If you posted above that you NEVER get group then you are either too picky or an infamous ahole. I play gmt +10 on everfrost and I occasionally get groups.

    The nerf bat keeps swinging wider and wider.

    Reply

  • Catharz

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    These changes are as stupid as the rest of this expansions itemisation.

    I’m in mostly EM raid gear (except chest), but I’m still not doing Drunder content. The drops there simply aren’t worth the time or the difficulty. I’d much rather die 20x getting our “casual” guild to kill one HM mob than run a single Drunder instance. As it is, a number of pieces from Drunder have 0 critical chance, but you need 270 critical chance for raids there. That’s insanely out of whack.

    All this change does is make the primal velium shards as worthless and the pure primal velium shards. They need to change the CM/Crit scaling so you can get away with putting adorns in other than Crit Mit, Crit Chance and Multi-Attack (from a brawler’s perspective). Currently, I have nearly 200 pure primal velium shards because as a raid tank there is NOTHING I would spend them on other than Crit Mit. All of the primal velium shards went to amour on alternates and then adorning their gear with Crit Mit.

    SmokeJumper may think he’s introduced something better than SF’s itemisation, but as a long-term player I think it’s much, much worse.

    At least in SF, there was raid armour and jewelery that people could purchase with raid shards. There is nothing worth a damn on the merchants except for ry’gorr (provided you don’t have it already).

    Personally, I think dungeon finder is dead in the water from the start. If you’re doing EM content, there’s a hardly a compelling reason to group (apart from gearing up alternates) as it is. The “rare” named in some of the instances have helped, but the gear still isn’t as good as the rare drops from SF.

    As a fix, I’d make it so you can get gear in instances and raids that is a decent upgrade over what you need to complete them. I’d also remove ALL of the crit mit and crit chance adorns, and put just enough of those stats on the gear. Then we’ll actually have the “freedom” to customise our gear that SmokeJumper was talking about.

    Reply

  • Rick777

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    Why bother? I mean we are 1 1/2 months away from an xpac, there is bound to be a new shard system and new questable armors and new PQ armors coming our way. I’m just going to sit tight until then, I really only raid 2-3 nights per week and have absolutely zero desire to group, and really the only thing that keeps me raiding is my friends online. Certainly the .1 cb/pot increase I get from that new piece of gear isn’t what’s keeping me raiding.

    It’s just amazing how much Smokescreen has ruined the core game. You are either a house decorator/soloer, or a hardcore raider and it seems like that middle class is ever shrinking. There is still so much greatness left in eq2 from before Smokescreen and that’s why I keep playing, but it seems like every time he releases something new it just chips away more and more at my desire to even log on.

    Reply

    • Feldon

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      Originally posted by Rick777:
      Why bother? I mean we are 1 1/2 months away from an xpac, there is bound to be a new shard system and new questable armors and new PQ armors coming our way.

      Unless DYOD armor requires a new type of shard, and provides a new rank of armor and gear above Ry’Gorr and below Drunder, I just don’t see it.

      Reply

  • Survived Abortion

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    I will just say this 90% of my game time is SENSLESS FACTION GRINDS, faction grinding is the ABSOLUTE worse thing about this game! It slows down Progression, Minimizes availability for groups (Everyone Solo quest grinding), 40k faction most start with -5k with average 4-2k hits the rest are 100 to 200 up repeatable , very ridiculous <—thats just one faction group. so in reality shards=not a problem, Gems=yeah needed fix, Faction to purchase+faction to Craft=Waste of TIME! NO PLAYER should ever have to spend (2 hours a day)for 7 days building up faction and they wonder why there is not enough groups,raids up and going like there was with other expansions.

    Reply

  • Striinger

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    Above Ry’Gor and below Drunder? *blink* They’d have to add a decimal place to stats to make that distinction, wouldn’t they? *lol*

    “Wow! This new gear has 0.3 more STA!!!”

    Reply

  • Karith

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    DYOD is going to be played with pre-created avatars.

    Reply

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