August Update Plans — SOEmote and Ethereal Weapons

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance, Live Events, StationCash

From the EQ2 Forums:

Greetings Norrathians!
Now that Qeynos Rises is live, we’re switching gears to a year-end expansion and working on live content and bugs. In addition, here’s some news for August.

TINKERFEST July 29 to August 8

Tinkerfest returns!  You will find event locations in Freeport at Inventor’s Outlook and in the Qeynos Capitol District at Inventor’s Threshold.  There are also new rewards on the quests and the Tinkerfest merchant has new items – including six tinkered-theme mounts.

Ethereal Weapons Fall in Summer

View Ethereal items @ EQ2U

A rumor has begun to spread across the world of Norrath.  As with any rumor, it started out on the lips of a few which many dismissed outright.  However, these stories of weapons appearing through Norrath were told and retold, stories of weapons of great power seemingly formed from spiritual energy  Can these whispers of legendary artifacts be true?  If so, whatever spiritual rift that is bringing these weapons into Norrath isn’t likely going to last long.  Go forth, heroes of Norrath, and see if you can discover one of these powerful weapons before they vanish from our world once again!

Step Right Up! [more Pay to Win – ed.]

We are adding a feature where you can play instanced mini-games to win random loot in game!  You purchase a ticket that gives you access to a mini-game instance.  Should you beat the simple, fun game, you receive a random reward from a chest, or opt for tokens you can spend on items available on a merchant.  We will be selling the tickets for Station Cash in the marketplace.

SOEmote Your Way

SOEmote is finally ready to go live on August 7!  After showing the feature at E3 in Los Angeles earlier this year and getting a lot of interest and feedback, we opted to spend more time developing it to make it fit easily into the game experience so it felt fun, natural, and easy.  You will find the SOEmote listed in the main EQII menu in game, as well as in the game Options. Some features we added are:

-Auto-Enable SOEmote with Webcam. To start with, we wanted the feature to be easy to use. If you have a camera set up, SOEmote will automatically send you a message to enable the feature and options when you log in. After that, when you log in with a webcam, you will be reminded that the feature is active.

-SOEmote Group Window: Included by default if you set up SOEmote, you can easily watch group members’ faces next to their names in the user interface.

-Mini-Chat Bar Additions: We integrated SOEmote buttons into the mini-voice chat bar under the chat window for easy use and access.

-Mirror Me: As we’ve been using SOEmote in the studio a lot, we wanted a quick and intuitive way to be able to see ourselves (because it’s fun) and also to ensure SOEmote is calibrated without having to use the large set-up window view.  With this addition, you see a small version of yourself with a quick Calibration button to set the default facial tracking position for those times when you leave your PC and return. TIP: When calibrating, make sure your own face is in a neutral position with no smile, eyes open and no expression. You get the best results this way!

- Voice Chat/SOEmote Options: We took some time to work on the usability of the existing voice chat controls as we integrated the SOEmote options. It seemed natural for us to pair voice chat and SOEmote options together.

- Local Proximity Chat in Guild Halls and Houses. With SOEmote or Voice Chat activated you’ll have the option to join a Local Channel so you can listen and talk based on your location just like walking and chatting into a room in real life.

- Voice Fonts. We added a selection of voice fonts for male and female voices for you to experiment with in the main SOEmote set-up options.  You will find the voice font selections in a drop-down list. We also added an option to record and play back your voice so you can hear how it sounds with a font.

- FAQ. We wanted to add a fairly deep FAQ for SOEmote to help users with common questions.  We can tell you now that if you are experiencing issues with tracking your facial movements, try increasing your lighting! And if that fails, you might want a better camera. We list the camera we use in the FAQ and link to an offer for good cameras.

We are really excited to have the community jump in and use SOEmote. As we’ve always said, with EQII as a role-playing game, we want to support players who want to become their characters! With our partners with SOEmote, Image Metrics and Vivox, we really hope you enjoy it and build incredible experiences from it.  More than anything, we want to see all the creative ways that you, our imaginative players, use it.  Look for a contest soon asking you to submit your own SOEmote videos through our in-game YouTube feature!

Holly “Windstalker” Longdale

A note about Ethereal weapons from Kander:

Ethereal Weapons are global. They can drop from anything you kill. Anything that would normally drop loot.

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Comments (31)

  • Eschia

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    For the weapons, basically epic 2.0 I assume.

    For the SOEmote, I wonder if I can make my Ratonga stick out her tongue or blow a raspberry. If not I will settle for making weird mouse faces.

    Reply

  • Jrel

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    The weapons are extra fluff. Some of the level 92 ones I saw linked in chat had basic blue stats like cb/pot, CC and just one stat instead of combinations of MA and DPS, or MA and Attack Speed. Also, the procs are much worse than the average ones on similar level items. However, it is nice to have options.

    Reply

  • Jrel

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    Ah, I rescind part of my earlier post. The procs do much more damage when I look at them in-game. EQ2u says 39 points of damage, my link shows 2612.

    Reply

  • Kruzzen

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    The weapons at the high level appear to be at the level of raid weapons. Even as far as easy mob PoW stuff. :(

    Reply

  • Laecee

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    So are we going down the ‘PAY to WIN’ road with these? Not a happy camper

    Reply

  • Kruzzen

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    Maybe Ethreal weapons are just a shell and ball game to distract us from the other major game change…

    Reply

  • ragefighter

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    no 2 handed weapons?

    Reply

  • Twyxx

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    They have the stats of HM Vallon’s, two white slots, no red and a crap proc. No clue where they drop or how you get them yet. I’m hoping it’s not an easy thing.

    Reply

  • Lempo of Everfrost

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    Should you beat the simple, fun game

    So sad and pathetic.
    I hope that they have more problems with this than they can handle, that the instances crash, cause lockups and anything and everything to make this the next PR nightmare for them. If I get my wish if it isn’t too much to ask I hope the backlash from this is far worse than anything they have ever experienced.

    Reply

  • Avianna

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    “Step Right Up! [more Pay to Win - ed.]

    We are adding a feature where you can play instanced mini-games to win random loot in game! You purchase a ticket that gives you access to a mini-game instance. Should you beat the simple, fun game, you receive a random reward from a chest, or opt for tokens you can spend on items available on a merchant. We will be selling the tickets for Station Cash in the marketplace.”

    ^^^^^^Translation: You can now get anything currently in game from the SC marketplace^^^^

    I really wish they would put as much work into fixing the game itself over and above the Smedbucks campaign. The entire marketplace needs to be thrown into the garbage can and put that stuff in game for free and watch how fast we tell our friends about all the cool new things we can get each week instead of the “yeah, it’s a fun game but they are more interested in making money off the marketplace than taking care of the bugs and the game.” that we are telling our friends now. Hey, SOE which do you think is gonna bring you more players in the long run?

    Reply

  • Anaogi

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    You purchase a ticket that gives you access to a mini-game instance. Should you beat the simple, fun game, you receive a random reward from a chest, or opt for tokens you can spend on items available on a merchant.

    Real world money for a chance at reward. I’m sure Legal was perched on their shoulders on this one. Or needed to be.

    I will be keeping an extremely close eye on this.

    Reply

  • Lempo of Everfrost

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    Hi Everyone,

    I wanted to take a moment to address the comments about “Step Right Up!” The description in the update plans is indeed meant to be a teaser.

    We will have full details about the mini-games and the type of loot that will be available in another update specific to this feature that will be released soon.

    Thanks

    ~Dexella

    Bullshit, bullshit, bullshit.

    The level on contempt these people have for the playerbase knows no bounds. This is a trial balloon that is being met with some resistance not some innocuous ‘teaser’. I’m sure many of you recall Smokeblower saying they run this game like a casino. Paying station cash for a random reward in itself is bad enough regardless of what the rewards can be.

    Reply

  • Argond

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    Poor Lempo is so bitter.

    Reply

  • Steve

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    Argond – it has been earned from years of SOE behavior.

    Reply

  • Morgan

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    Anyone who says this is not pay-to-win is dumb and blind. It is quite literally payment followed by ‘simple content with loot’ or winning. Pay -> win.

    Reply

  • Azzaroth

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    Sounds like:

    “Log in please today we have to forfill statistiks to keep our PSS1 deal”

    BTW: Did you know there will be no soe authentificator for EU players anymore, security for non US players seems not to be worth anything.

    Reply

  • Taka

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    This random loot chance crap for money is an idea they do with “funhouses” in dc universe and is the most condescending piece of content to extract your station cash that i’ve ever seen. Sure, the games are fun “enough”, but the fact you pay station cash for a chance at randomize loot is just not for me. My opinion.

    Reply

  • Lempo of Everfrost

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    @Argond – No I’m not bitter, I’m not a big fan of being pissed on and told it is raining. You want to believe that garbage Dexella said then believe it. Those that are not wearing blinders know exactly where this is headed.

    @Azzaroth – In the interest of full disclosure, only because your statement was a bit vague I thought it migh be good to touch it up just a bit.

    Did you know there will be no soe authentificator for EU players anymore after being told it would, security for non US players seems not to be worth anything.

    This was only told to the playerbase to help quell the storm, it was a lie when it was stated.

    Reply

  • Charn

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    Taka said:

    This random loot chance crap for money is an idea they do with “funhouses” in dc universe

    Yeah, but at least with DCUO you can still go in the fun house for free. I believe it’s once a week (or every few days) if you’re a “Freemium” player, once a day if you have a subscription, and anyone can buy “Fun house Tokens” to go in as many times as you can afford.

    Now, in DCUO, the Fun House rewards are mostly innocuous: common appearance items that are found in the world, rare items only found in the Fun House, some illusions, and some rare items that let you travel using a different movement set (flight, super speed, or acrobatics – though at speeds slower than if you have that movement power) and you always get some random token that is used to buy gear (albeit mostly the entry-level tokens for lower quality gear with rarer chances for better tokens).

    IF the rewards are random appearance items, or random Marketplace items (paying less for a ticket on a chance to win a more expensive item) then fine, we can already buy that stuff, now we have a chance to get it cheaper.

    If it’s loot that’s as good as dropped gear (group and raid gear specifically) then they’d just be shooting themselves in the foot.

    They said “random rewards from a chest” not random loot. I’m going to hold off judgement until I see what these “rewards” really are (though looking at SOE’s track record, I’m not too optimistic . . . ).

    Reply

  • Whilhelmina

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    It sounds like “here you are, Prosieben, we’re preparing the way so you can sell temporary über-loot like in Maestia all over again”…

    Reply

  • Daalilama

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    Several days ago I read the august update plans thread…ready Windstalkers reply I simply quoted and asked with still broken game mechanics, unaddressed promised class revamp/fixes that never materialize and garbage gear itemization why the dev team has the audacity to waste precious developement time on fluff and pay to win.

    My reward was a 3 day suspension from the forums for “trolling”.

    Reply

  • Loch

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    From Holly on the forums:

    Howdy folks,

    I wanted to give you more info on mini-game instances and random reward system we are working on.

    First, the loot items will primarly include Marketplace items already available with additional similar but unique items in addition. For example, as of today, we are planning to offer a new, unique mount model to the list. For the sake of real examples and clarity, the list we have right now includes items like Research Reducers for spells, XP potions, appearance armor and weapons, and unattuners.

    Second, we want this to be fun and positive for players who participate. For that reason, if the random reward offered isn’t an item you want or can use, you can opt to take a token reward instead of the item. The tokens can be used/saved to purchase the available reward items in the entire list and will cost varying token amounts as you might expect (like a rare mount would have a different cost than a more common potion).

    Third, the idea for the mini-games is that they are mini-games. They are intended to be short and fun and result in a reward. Right now we have three mini-games though you only have to play and win one to get a reward.

    And lastly, the team definitely wanted this addition to the game to have context in the world of EverQuest II. It has an appropriate and logical place among the Gigglegibbers. We’ll get some screenshots out soon. All I can say is seeing a goblin in a tophat never gets old….

    I hope this lessens the mystery a bit and of course there will be more news on this very soon as we hope to have it on test within the next couple of weeks.

    Reply

  • Dark

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    lol.

    Why do people still play this game and support Sonys greedy pay to win model? I don’t understand it. You realize if you’re subbed that you’re telling SoE you love greedy pay to win game models right?

    Even if you love bending over to the pay to win model, they aren’t even updating or fixing their game, why are you throwing money at them. Go play something else or throw money at people who actually deserve it like Turbine or Trion.

    Reply

  • skippydippy

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    Oh this has everything to do with the German deal of that im sure to suggest that this isnt pay 2 win is nonsense.

    Reply

  • Sole

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    Hola Dark@

    because, many People still love the game and dont use Marketplace @ all.
    In my opinion actually there is no other MMO that deserve money at all. Rift ist just a four button smashing wow-clone. Lotro is nice to play a few times in an month, just for the story part, but there is a Item Shop and is pay to win too. Also whis should turbine better then SoE?

    my2c

    Reply

  • Drek

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    Yes alot of us do still like the game and leave then come back because it is a really good game.

    I just don’t use the SC for the silly stuff, besides i think that most of the items they have on SC should be set as rewards for high end raids and content, but greed before need.

    As for the Mini-games i prefer no comment i don’t want Karma to bit me

    Reply

  • Lokim

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    Everyone should check your Crash Folder on your C: drive… i just deleted mine… it had 79 gigs of data in it using up nearly all of my SSD…

    As to the Ethereal Weapons… they drop everywhere… I’ve seen them drop in the hole killing trash mobs and in the Erudin Library… So, yes, you can farm old SF zones for level 92 raid quality weapons two weeks after they nerfed the mythicals

    /fail soe

    Reply

  • Mr. Boondaba

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    Pay to “win”? Have you looked on the marketplace lately? About the best thing you can get is a research reducer. So… why would you spend money to get a mystery box when you can already just buy what you want? With the exception of DM gear, which you don’t buy with RL $ anyway, there’s nothing really worth getting. Vet rewards give you more xp pots than you’ll need in a toon’s lifetime. So… I don’t understand any of you. You’re that pissed off that someone might spend RL $ and get what… an unattuner? An xp pot? A mount that you don’t have but doesn’t go any faster than yours? An appearance item? That’s “winning” to you? Apparently you all have the same definition of “winning” as Charlie Sheen, just with lest coke and hookers. What a bunch of whiners.

    Reply

    • Feldon

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      Pay to “win”? Have you looked on the marketplace lately?

      Yes. Have you? Dungeons have been added that you buy access to for a chance at loot.

      What a bunch of whiners.

      What an uninformed idiot.

      Reply

  • Mr. Boondaba

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    Yes, I have looked at the marketplace lately. Like I said in my above post, there’s nothing really there worth getting. Pay to play a dungeon and get a good piece of gear, or go run a dungeon and loot a good piece of gear, or play a DM that wasn’t designed for PL-exploiting a few times and buy a good piece of gear, or play BG games and buy a good piece of gear… I’m not uninformed, you’re just narrow-minded.

    Again, like I asked, how is it pay to “win” when you can get equivalent and/or better things elsewhere? And again, like I said, what a bunch of whiners.

    Reply

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