GU63: Prestige Points, Crafting, and Test Rewards?

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Art, Appearance, Housing, Game Updates & Maintenance, Tradeskill

From Xelgad on the EQ2 Forums:

Prestige Points are basically Alternate Advancements that you earn automatically as you level. Details coming later this week.

We’re hoping to have a lot of people on test over the next month, and I think our community team is even working on some rewards for players who are able to make it over there.

To update your Test Client in Launchpad 4, click on the tools icon in your normal live launcher -> Select Game Version -> Public Test -> Apply. Looking forward to seeing what you guys think!

From newly named EQ2 Tradeskill developer Omougi on the EQ2 Forums

Hi there! I have been hard at work preparing new awesome tradeskill stuff for GU63. This new TS stuff is going to test later this week!

I’m not trying to pull wool over your eyes with new shiney things though, just letting you know what I’ve been working on.

After all the bugs for this new update are ironed out, I will be revisiting outstanding issues and getting them resolved. Mastercrafted/Handcrafted stat disparity issues, round shield recipe issues, etc. I can’t give you a firm ETA because of how unpredictable timetables can be sometimes.

What I can tell you is these bugs/issues annoy us as much as they annoy you, and we want to have the majority of them addressed ASAP (before GU64).

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Comments (41)

  • Saev

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    I am still curious when crit mit is gonna be gone?

    Reply

  • badcat

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    prestige points sound like the points you get on xbox/ps3 for playing games. One has to wonder why were adding yet another useless system from another game. Who asked for that?

    Reply

  • milliebii

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    ….too little, too late.

    Pre orders for Guild Wars 2 open April 10, with a beta testing key and access to all beta events.

    I guess I will keep raiding until the go-live date but after that I am gone. No more SOE games for me.

    Reply

  • sando

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    yeah , guild wars 2 , waiting on that as well

    Reply

  • Landiin

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    So why not just add more to one of the AA tree? Why make yet another point system? Maybe I am just to stuck in the past IDK…

    Reply

  • Aaron

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    Seems like this might be in response to the “Let’s get on Test” thread I made in the General Discussion area.

    Reply

  • Eschia

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    Pristage Points? Sounds to me like just something else to grind. We already have things in place they could have used, like give us more AAs, but they gotta make us grind more.

    Reply

  • epixz

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    @Eschia

    Wich AA do you want to grind? every class has all the AA that are having an impact on the class already maxed out.
    Do you want to max double harvest or +5 mount speed?

    Reply

  • Feldon

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    I could be wrong but I think Eschia meant adding new AA abilities.

    It’s widely known that most classes have unlocked all the “cool” stuff by around 270-290 points. Everything north of 300 is fluff for the most part.

    I know I’ll get flack for this, but I’ve always felt that some AA lines should be unlocked by more than just grinding. Want to unlock the Ranger endline abilities? Complete Casualties of the War of the Fae (Rain Caller HQ). There are a variety of HQs in the game that are tied into class. I would like to see quests that actually provide advancement or progression.

    I don’t believe in kludgy methods to enforce player behavior. But I also believe that people should be encouraged and guided towards the best content in the game. And then the rewards for that content should be palpable. The rewards from Heritage Quests are almost always DoA, and the experience -to-hassle ratio has always been low. HQs should award like 2-3 AA points, and an item that is valuable for more than 5 minutes.

    SOE said they didn’t want to do percentage-based effects on items because then items remain valuable after level cap raises. Is anyone really running around with the Bloodthirsty Choker anymore? How about all those powerful items from Shard of Hate? Yes, they were valuable for more than 1 expansion. But they did eventually go by the wayside.

    People grinding in Blackburrow, Firemyst Gully, Sebilis or Chelsith not because the content is fun, but because you get the maximum amount of mobs in the minimum amount of time. I’m fine with that content, but other content should compete on its own merits for player attention.

    I’m not saying this is what Prestige Points will be, but something other than grinding out another 25 or 50 points would be nice.

    I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that Prestige Points will take residence on the current Alternate Advancements window in a new tab. Guess I’ll find out tomorrow just how busy Dethdlr and I will be supporting the changes on EQ2U.

    Reply

  • Taka

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    Bump! -> Feldon’s for unique Heritage quests for unique abilities.

    Reply

  • Taka

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    Edit** Bump! -> Feldon’s idea** for unique Heritage quests for unique abilities.

    Reply

  • bhagpuss

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    My 82nd Beastlord ran Shard of Hate with a 78th Guardian guildmate last night and we both got upgrades :P Also a sword that has a fantastic graphic and will go in appearance, which is never outleveled.

    That aside, I agree. The more variety in progression, the better and new reasons to do older content are always welcome.

    Reply

  • Kwill

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    Thanks again, Feldon, for your insightful commentary as well as good reporting on what’s going on.

    It could be prestige points are another alternative way to advance a character that might set EQ2 apart from other MMOs, but I do have my concerns that the dev team has not been the most creative lately with the content. So whether it’s unique, and as you suggest, competes on its own merit for player attention, or another unfortunate attempt at a time sink, remains to be seen.

    Lately the design has been quite derivative of other games, but lacking in the substance to make it work — ie Dungeon Finder, I think the jury is still out on Dungeon Maker — but still, please, dev team, come up with something new and innovative that works for this prestige point thing!

    As to grinding through mobs, and the HQ quests, part of the problem is people don’t really want all the lore, but would rather just maximize their character advancement. If you read the new issue of Game Informer, their interview with Scott Hartsman is interesting. People complain Rift has no lore (it’s bland), but he says that most people won’t read a wall of text, so you have to give players the story in very small increments or you lose their attention all together (he says players can read lore books in game, and they don’t). In an unrelated article, a game producer is quoted as saying at the DICE game conference that if you want to be an author and tell a story, go make a movie or write a book, because a video game is the worst medium for complex story telling.

    That’s very different than the ideas of the past, where everyone was all excited about story telling and the narrative. I would guess you will get less complicated storytelling in the future, and more action-based game play, that takes less time to get through. EQ2 being one of the games that had an abundance of lore, I wonder how this trend will affect it.

    Reply

  • Kwill

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    @baghpuss, it’s a really good point that at least with appearance slots, you can enjoy an outleveled item because it looks cool.

    The starred robe from Sabaron’s is heavy on my clothing rotation list!

    Reply

  • bhagpuss

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    Oops! Shard of Fear. Shard of Hate with those two would have lasted about 0.001 seconds! Imagine the upgrades we would have got there, though!

    Reply

  • Feldon

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    As to grinding through mobs, and the HQ quests, part of the problem is people don’t really want all the lore, but would rather just maximize their character advancement. If you read the new issue of Game Informer, their interview with Scott Hartsman is interesting. People complain Rift has no lore (it’s bland), but he says that most people won’t read a wall of text, so you have to give players the story in very small increments or you lose their attention all together (he says players can read lore books in game, and they don’t). In an unrelated article, a game producer is quoted as saying at the DICE game conference that if you want to be an author and tell a story, go make a movie or write a book, because a video game is the worst medium for complex story telling.

    That’s sad since I grew up on story-rich games.

    Reply

  • Aeyri

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    /agrees with Feldon

    Lore is one of the things that attracts me to a game. I tried out Rift during the Sony hack downtime, and the lack of lore was one of the reasons it failed to suck me in.

    I’d hate to see story go by the wayside.

    Reply

  • Kwill

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    On the other hand, TJ Gaida from EA is quoted as saying, “Call of Duty literally earned a billion dollars a day faster than Avatar. Maybe we shouldn’t always be trying to aim for the film [with our stories]. And I’m a film guy saying that.”

    So, perhaps it’s just walls of text that will go away, rather than the story telling. Maybe the producer will just have to work harder at telling them in different ways…

    Just going to throw this in, too — Bethesda creative director Todd Howard says the emotion that games can give you is pride. I thought that was insightful. If that’s true, then prestige points should be a winner!

    Reply

  • Feldon

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    All of this dovetails into what Guild Wars 2 producers have said about storytelling. They’re going to tell the story by SHOWING instead of pages of dialog text and then killing mobs standing around in a field picking flowers. If the NPC says “wolves are attacking my family, can you help?” they actually will be.

    Reply

  • Llogwey

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    I agree with Feldon too…

    People tend to forget the RPG part in MMORPG… and only remember “MMO”…

    Skyrim and the elderscrolls series are a worldwide success because of the depth and the depth involves very big lore (geography, history, mythology, events, bestiary… lore in general)
    the Ultima series, one of the biggest saga of CRPG still today (1978-1998 from ultima 1 to 9) was oriented towards lore…

    pen&paper RPG with are GAMES too but not video games are rich in lore too. and CRPG are a special kind of video games they DO involve lore… they are not like arcade,FPS,RTS,or fighting games…

    The question would be : Should the MMOrpg’s still be centered on RPG or rather on player upgrading and improvment…

    I’ll tell you that, I used to be a DM for ad&d… in the 4th edition, Wizards of the Coast decided to make it very technical and centered on the stats, the loot, and character development… DD4E is now almost extinct and was a failure, as opposed to its predecessors (DD3.5 or even better ad&d2)

    RPG, (video or paper, solo or MMO) ARE profoundly linked and intertwinned with deep and rich lore…
    That’s why Rift does not attract me… neither guildwars actually…

    and as far as I know, the duo “EQ1″ & “EQ2″ are the best mmoRPG I have seen around in ten years… Even Warcraft, which as some lore but minimal… started as an RTS and not as a MMO… which makes it quite different than the EQ franchise…

    Reply

  • Krittery

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    Well, from what I’ve read and understand, the new Character specializations will be just like the Warder AA tree’s for the Beastlords where you will get, say, 1 per every 2 levels after lvl 30 or so. Something along those lines. And will allow further customization to your character. So from my point of view, they are adding a 2 level cap increase to adventure levels, and then adding probably about 25 AA’s and a new AA tree without actually saying that they are adding them. A way to further gameplay without people bitching and moaning about having to grind even more.

    I do have a couple of concerns with the level increase and for someone who no longer raids and plays with people who have not and will not raid, we have been pushing into Drunder but still cannot kill everything in Drunder because we aren’t geared high enough even though when we run the zones, 3 of us are in raid gear, and the other 3 of us are in full on Drunder armor and jewelry with x2 jewelry and weapons as well and still don’t have the fire power/survivability to be able to make it through all the Drunder zones.

    My concern is that everything that we have been working on over the last couple months to try and push it over so we can kill the hardest group stuff in the game will be completely put to waste with level cap increase. It’s very frustrating that they would put the Heroic/Group tag on zones that cannot be done in anything less than Raid gear. So for those of us out there that like to progress through the game without raiding end up hitting walls a lot faster than those who spend hours raiding. SOE put in these zones for Raiders and they don’t even want to do them most of the time because the gear that drops in the zones isn’t equivalent to what they can get in Raids and basically the in-game rich get richer by running sell runs for plat that they essentially don’t need because their character’s are already geared to the 9′s anyway.

    Dear SOE, don’t forget about people who are trying to progress group-wise. We are people too and would like at least an opportunity to defeat the hardest “group” zones in the game.

    Reply

  • Taka

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    @Krittery – While I relate completely you, various groups in that I played with have and are doing Drunder with a mix of rygorr drunder and x2 gear. Granted. It’s hard, but it’s completely satisfying when get the ‘V’.

    In regards to story telling… Lore rich games like EQ2 have so much lore to build on and add to it’s what makes it interesting to how this future word evolves.

    I enjoyed the move to highlight heritage text. If its a green and gold box, I definitely read it for the lore. The first time I looted the mastery books (in 2005) I read them. Sages books with custom stories are great. Even better.

    A mix of the story telling techniques make your product just that much more versatile. Furthermore, using lulls in game for story telling is always preferred to creating lulls. i.e. mobs dies loots are distributed while mob complains about you wrecking his day, ala, Mithanial Marr in Shard of Love. Anyway, diversity is always welcome.

    Fantastic article on engaging storytelling from BioWare cinematic lead Jonathan Perry -> here.

    It’s all about flavor.

    Reply

  • Kiara

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    Scott is absolutely right. It’s a very sad truth about story telling in game. Very few people are avid enough lore hounds to spend the time to read.

    Nowadays there’s no faster way to lose the bulk of your audience than by giving them the story in a wall of text with the accept button at the bottom.

    Makes me feel old :(

    Reply

  • Kaufman

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    Half-Life 2 – there’s a story done right.

    Reply

  • Anaogi

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    “Show, don’t tell” is considered a cardinal rule of good storytelling. That said, I’d still like to see in-game lore books and such as continuing reference points, instead of only having/getting that information once.

    And as for ‘questable abilities’, ooooooh yeah. That would be cool. (And in a way already pioneered–Epic Repercussions, anyone?)

    Finally–I suspect a lot of the resentment noted recently in the crafter-adventurer divide isn’t from a lack of resources, but from…how shall I put it: the tradeskill devs having a clue what ‘their’ players wanted and executing, whereas the adventuring side devs…well, not so much. The solution here, I think, is to get the folks on that side of the house up to the standards set by their crafting brethren…

    Reply

  • Rocky

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    @Anaogi
    “show, don’t tell” may be considered the cardinal rule of books and movies(story driven media), but in games it goes “Do, don’t show” because this is a interactive media. An easy example is how Lucan kills a citizen in freeport every hour. It makes the player experience it rather then having this event just mentioned by a npc as you pass by.

    As far as the changes, I’m excited for prestige points. There is already too many AA, they need to trim it down both for grinding purposes, and make it more accessible to new players.(telling a new player that they need to grind to 90 and grind 277 AA, isn’t a good way to draw people in.)

    Reply

  • Landiin

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    I’m not a big lore guy but I do know there needs to be somewhat of a story line to a game. Telling the story through the games characters/cut scenes would be a much better way to do it vs reading nodes and nodes of text.

    The idea of HQ unlocking high power class abilities is a good idea and would be a good progression aspect for a class. Sadly we have to know the limitation/imagination of our dev team.

    Reply

  • Anaogi

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    @Rocky
    I considered that the equivalent of ‘Show’ for this medium–I think we’re on the same page here.

    And ‘prestige points’…sounds like ‘prestige classes‘ to me? Interesting. I’ll want to see where this goes. I should get myself back on Test/Testcopy for this one…

    Reply

  • Jazzalyn

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    I really miss the [most often] short text used in EQ1 where you had to respond to the text using terms the NPC used – it became important to read the text, and I always enjoyed what I read.

    Reply

  • Dethdlr

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    There are lots of times where I prefer to do solo quests. The main reason is so I can actually read the quest text if I want to and actually follow the story.

    There are plenty of great stories in EQ2 but most of them never get read by most people in the rush to level up. In fact, 84.231% of all quest text is only read by 13.8263% of the players. (You knew that 78.424% of all statistics were made up on the spot, right?)

    When I’m out questing by myself, I’ll give the story a shot and if it’s interesting, I’ll read through the whole thing. Like the Nipik quest-line in the beginning area of Great Divide. Really liked that one. But when I’m questing in a group, there is usually that pressure to just click, click, click to get the quest without reading anything. Otherwise everybody else in the group is headed off to the next update wondering what’s taking so long.

    Not really sure how to fix it though since sometimes, I want to just click, click, click and move on.

    In a way, I’d like it if the game made me see the storyline somehow, even though I know I’d find it irritating sometimes. I think the game would be more engaging if I knew WHY I’m killing these beings that I’ve never seen before. They’ve never done anything to ME. Yet. Sure the quest text told me why, but I didn’t read it. If they did voice overs for all the key story-lines it might be possible. The first time through on a given account, don’t make the response choices click-able until after the voice over it done with each step? Or something along those lines. Basically make you wait until the voice over is done before you can proceed. That would get rid of the pressure while in a group at least. I can’t just click, click, click because this is the first time doing the quest and they make you listen to (or at least wait for) the voice over the first time. They’ve done something similar in a few places, but not that often.

    But I don’t think they do as many voice overs as they used to. Plus, there would probably be a revolt on the forums about forcing people to listen to the voice overs when all they want to do is click, click, click. :) Would probably make the game more engaging though if more of us knew more of the story-lines.

    Reply

  • Achilios

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    I couldn’t agree more. That is the main reason why it took me months to get to level 90, on my second toon. I wanted to do as many quests as I could, take the time to learn what I was actually doing and why, and exploring as much of the content as I could.

    Reply

  • Silzin

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    I for one hope that the Prestige Points let you customize your toon from other toons of the same class. like, at the tope you make a choice of 2-3 abilities and after that each one of then unlock 2 abilities and after choosing one of those then you can get to an endline. ones you get start down a path you cant get points in other paths. this could give 3-4 or more class specific choices that could help balance classes and give players more choice for customization (I like that we can only get 1 Heroic Endline).

    Reply

  • Whilhelmina

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    I agree with Dethdlr on the quest part. It’s nice to read the quest and know why you butcher stuff and the reasoning behind it. But I also like to be able to skip the text on some stuff that doesn’t interest me at all, like Nipik’s haven or those awfull panda men in SF (yuck for carebearish!). And of course if you did the quest several times already, you really don’t need to read the quest once more.
    No easy way out of this. I do think that some quests in velious were giving you a choice of long story vs “ok ok, I’ll kill your stuff, don’t need a lecture”.

    Reply

  • Krittery

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    I bet the Specialization Points or whatever there are being called will be a pot like the way you build your class in Rift. Rift has an excellent concept behind their class building, only problem for me in that game was just a lack of freedom, and constantly being barred from continuing a quest because of the out of control Rifts that formed everywhere. If SOE can follow somewhat along those lines of character customization and specialty, they really could do some food.

    Reply

  • Daalilama

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    Lets hope the “prestige” points are class based and not archtype….heroic lines were to generic as it is.

    Reply

  • Tomanator

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    Let’s hope people get on test and feedback the prestige points.

    Reply

  • yslrtrg

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    Dethdlr said, “there would probably be a revolt on the forums about forcing people to listen to the voice overs”…

    I’ve looked over shoulders of people playing SWTOR. Those apparently inescapable dialog scenes would make me nuts. Major product, tho’. I don’t get it…

    Reply

  • Striinger

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    @Dethdlr
    That sounds a LOT like what they’ve done with cutscenes. To be honest, when the cut scene used to be meaningful and tell a story, I didn’t have a problem with watching it…the first time.

    The trouble is, they wind up like one in Ascent, where it leaves many people thinking “what the?” and finding a way to shortcut it.

    As an idea and way forward, maybe SOE could splash a little cash on a very good voice for the MS voice to text engine, or pick up an engine they could include in the game with reasonable voice quality. THEN it could be an option to read the text of at LEAST the heritage/signature quests. SOE could even tailor the ‘spoken’ text so it is pronounced closer to what they want (if it could be different to the displayed text). Heck, it could potentially even be a community effort to improve the quality much like Google translate does.

    Either way, it’d take effort, and on THIS incarnation of Norrath, I just don’t see it happening. I think we’re well & truly in “stanby” mode waiting for their next investment to start bearing fruit.

    Here’s to wishing, though. :)

    Reply

  • Striinger

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    @Feldon:
    “That’s sad since I grew up on story-rich games.”

    I agree with you, and think that the guy in the interview is very short-sighted. The story can be VERY rich, but it just can’t be ‘told’ in the same way.

    A movie ‘presents’ the story to you,
    A book ‘chronicles’ the story for you, and
    A game has to include you IN the story.

    Putting books inside a game for people read, is just as silly as making a movie that streams a book to you. Imagine the failure of Star Wars (for example) if 80% of the story were told using the scrolling screens of text as in the introduction. After that first scroll to establish a setting, I can’t remember having to ‘read the movie’ anywhere else…because I was being shown the story from that point.

    EQ2 is pretty good at including people in the story, but still relies on too much text/video in places that are inserted in the ‘wrong spot’. At the ‘start’ of the game, I’ll read a bit to establish a setting….once I begin to be a part of the story, I don’t want someone to yank me back to story time via a movie or a book. I get that for ‘realism’ you may need to research the history of something…but when you get online to PLAY…you want to play (not read a book or watch a movie).

    Well, that’s my perspective, anyway….and that’s all I’ll say ’bout that. ;)

    Reply

  • Killyugie

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    “That’s sad since I grew up on story-rich games.”

    The thing is, EQ2 doesn’t have a very interesting lore. I for one try to keep myself involved in the main storyline, but everything else feels too two dimensional, very hard to keep my attention. Some dialogue is either too corny or trying too hard. I also hate having to read the response of the character which is usually on the lines of a boyscout “Golly I’ll do my best, that sounds swell”. And especially if you’re an Ogre. Also the fact that you’re running on other peoples time. When I’m in a group, we gotta get that zone done, people don’t want to sit around just for someone to read the lore and waste time. Just look through the logs later.

    I love story-rich games btw. I loved reading what people said in the Elder Scrolls games (except for Skyrim), the same goes for many other rpg oriented games.

    Reply

  • Killyugie

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    Lore is one thing, but what really matters is immersion. EQ1 had a good deal of immersion due to it’s atmospheric sounds used periodically, the unsuspecting danger, and the general feel you were in a giant world. The overland zones in eq1 might have been flat and textureless, but the other elements made up for that con.

    EQ2 doesn’t really have that. It has great music, some really good looking zones (TSO,DOV as great examples), some nice looking races, some enjoyable features such as housing, collecting ect. But it misses something. It misses the ability to be completely sunk in a different world. And EQ2 isn’t the only one, a lot of games today lack that. It’s the Call of Duty era where games don’t have either have quality of immersion or atmosphere that sucks us in. Yet its obvious they try very hard on doing so with the “deep” characters we get. Why am I more immersed in an SNES game like Secret of Evermore then a typical grey/brown bloomed modern day game? Why do I remember that game, or rather other games like it more then what has come out in the past 5-6 years? I mean it’s not only RPG’s that can feel immersion, fps’s can easily suck you in. A good example is the Half Life series. A simulation like Sim City 4 can suck you in even!

    It seems as the industry itself becomes more like a corporation, it loses its soul in the process.

    Reply

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