August 4 2009 Hotfix

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance, Itemization, Raiding

ITEMS

  • The Meathook from Sinking Sands is now a piercing weapon.
  • Illusionists: The Shifting Visions 6-piece set bonus properly adds damage to Dynamism again.
  • The Stick of the Sootfoot Boomer now triggers correctly off of offensive spells.
  • The Great Horn of Drelakor can no longer be wielded by priests.
  • The Purple-Saddled Mistrunner Horse can now be turned into a house plushie.

KURN’S TOWER

  • Kurns Tower (x2) has been tuned a bit and the bosses are not so stingy.*
  • Ilenee’s Despair and Betrayal now teleport less frequently.
  • Kurn now has an additional spell to help make transitions between controllers smoother.

* Check out my previous blog post for more information on how Kurn’s Tower x2 rewards have been tweaked.

   

Kurn’s Tower x2 Rewards

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance, Itemization, Raiding

Some of us who have made significant progress in Ward of Elements and have wanted to sink our teeth into some new x2 content have ventured into Kurn’s Tower x2 raid zone and found the challenges to be formidable, but the rewards not so much. Perhaps the biggest concern about the zone was that no set patterns dropped.

Timetravelling has chimed in with some big news. He has made substantial changes to the loot table including:

  • The common items from the first 3 bosses have been removed and moved to a basepop (trash) table
  • Ione can now drop up to 3 items, including rares from a brand new table
  • The first 3 bosses now drop a raid set item (the WoE set) in addition to their normal loot

I know this will go a long way to making folks more interested in this zone.

I’ve only dipped my toe in the water on this one, but found even the trash had some interesting scripts to them (the single trash mobs have an AoE on a timer, the paired trash mobs summon a burynai helper at ~30 seconds).

It’s also worth reading the thread if you have had some difficulty with the 3rd named as there are some ideas posited by devs and players alike.

July 30 Hotfix

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

EQ2 Devs are quick on the draw and have already remedied some issues that were present in the July 28th Fan Faire Feedback update and made some other cool changes as well. Each of the items in these two updates may appear small, but they are almost all from player feedback and make the game better. It’s great to see.

General

  • Choosing a bad name when using the CTS token should now give an appropriate error.
  • The Scroll of Smoldering Tactics and Scroll of Smoldering Blessing now properly display their bonuses in the Persona window.
  • The Abyssal Carpet mount can now be summoned without equipping it.  It is now slightly faster and adds an additional bonus.
  • Smoldering shards should be slightly easier to acquire in both Chardok and Sebilis.
  • The Carpet of El’Khazi can now be converted to a house item.
  • The plushies of the Parade Halasian Draft Horse are now correctly dark coloured.

Rage Against the Dying of the Light

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

With apologies to Dylan Thomas, it appears that the instant no-carry cast-anywhere torch which we have all been granted (press Alt-L) does not always respect the wishes of its owner. It seems that its flame will not remain quelled for long, and folks have reported spontaneous re-ignition of their torches at the least opportune times.

I’ve heard this makes PvP quite a bit more interesting.

A hotfix is expected soon.

July 29 Fan Faire Feedback Update

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance

Fan Faire Feedback Update

At the most recent Fan Faire, many of you presented us with a ton of useful feedback.  We’ve tried to address many of your great ideas and suggestions in the below changes.  Thanks to everyone who attended and provided feedback and to those of you who provide feedback through all the other channels!

GENERAL

  • There is now a flight post from the Bellywhumper camp out to the Dragon’s Rest Shallows for easier access to the Order of Rime camp.
  • Those who have achieved some faction with the Order of Rime can now use the Order’s warbirds to travel back and forth from Fens of Nathsar to Jarsath Wastes.
  • A Call of Rime bauble is now available from Melimy Yolta, in the Fens of Nathsar Rime camp!
  • Non-charged mounts can now be stabled in your home!  Just examine your whistle, drum, or carpet to place the item in your home.  Examine the stabled mount again when you want to ride your mount once more!
  • Guild hall harvesting minions now also harvest imbue materials.
  • Boomba now offers a much wider selection of pickles.
  • Player-written books will now be editable when transferring to another server.
  • Players now have a personal torch that does not clutter their hands.  Use ALT+L to light your way.
  • Guild mail can now be sent to specific ranks.  Click the to button on the send window and select which ranks you wish to spam . .. Err mail.
  • Added an indicator (white star) on the target window. This should only show up if the NPC gives AA experience and not show up if you’ve collected it.

ITEMS

  • The Firiona Vie Statue now has 100 status reduction.
  • Collection items from The Shadow Odyssey dungeons have now been added to the Collection Burynai.

LAVASTORM

  • Najena’s elevator in Lavastorm can no longer change directions while traveling to a new floor.

MOORS OF YKESHA

  • A mysterious new stranger has appeared in the Moors of Ykesha. Rogues and predators may visit him to exchange their hybrid shard armor for class shard armor.

MUNZOK’S MATERIAL BASTION

  • During the final Munzok fight, Munzok’s various adds should no longer cast any spells players can cure.  Cures can be focused on spells and effects cast by Munzok himself.

NEKTROPOS CASTLE

  • The Swine Lord should spawn a bit more frequently in Nektropos Castle.

VOICE

  • The voice system has been upgraded to correct a number of disconnection issues.

QUESTS

  • Hallmark quests can now be deleted from your quest journal. Note: Hallmark quests have never counted towards your quest limit, so deleting them will not make room for additional quests.
  • If you have the right Rime faction to get a quest from Rantiri Skelbre, Kraytoc Killingfrost, Kellaen Mednevn or Kyena the Eastern Lord, but you do not have the Rime illusion on, they will now tell you that they must recognize you in order to proceed.
  • If you meet the requirements for Rime quests in other zones Bragek Joll, Thress Kivatei, and Pylemea Stoerki will now tell you to travel to another zone to get a quest from specific NPCs.
  • The quests “Kill ‘em All” in Fallen Gate can now be obtained by players above level 25.
  • The quest “The Summoning” in Nektulos Forest can now be obtained by players above level 37.
  • The quest “Trinkets of the Dead” in Nektropos Castle can now be completed.
  • Billy in Nektropos Castle should be a bit easier to find for the heritage quest “A Missing Mask”. He can now be hailed by clicking on him instead of having to use the ‘H’ key
  • The quest “Bag of Parts” in Baubleshire can now be completed at any level.
  • The Shady Swashbuckler in Nektulos Forest can now obtain Berik, Sword of Thunder for those who have already completed the quest.

Tinkerfest is HERE!

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

Tinkerfest is here!! The gnomes of Norrath have resurrected their holiday from more than 500 years ago. This celebration of all things gnomish will bring you new gnomish house items, new shinies to collect, and lots of fun! Look for signs of celebration in gnomish hangouts – Gnomeland Security in Steamfont Mountains, Temple Street in Freeport, Baubleshire in Qeynos! The festivities will run from 12:01am July 24th until 11:59pm August 3rd PDT. See you in Norrath!!

Read More

Tinkerfest at EQ2Traders

Relief for Stuck Mailboxes and Spells

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance

The Thursday July 16th Hotfix corrects two issues I discussed yesterday.

First, being unable to use the Automated Character Transfer Service (available by purchasing a Character Transfer Token through StationCash) due to ‘ghost mails’ stuck in their mailbox.

Second, the Research Assistants not granting the spell if you are logged out of the game or not in the same zone as a Research Assistant when the research completes.

Here are the July 16th Hotfix Notes:

GENERAL

  • The “/clear_mailbox” command will now allow players to delete all mail, including ghosted mail from their character. NOTE:  After using the command the mail icon in the Spell Effects window will remain until the player logs out and then back in.
  • An issue that was causing researched spells from research assistants to not be granted upon completion has been fixed.

Of Horses, Cloaks, Books, and Transfers

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance

Research Assistants

Many players are reporting that their Research Assistants which they hired paid quested for coaxed hailed to get Master spell upgrades are being rather possessive with the results of that research and not giving up the spell.

Rothgar shed some light on the issue, specifically that this problem will occur only when you are logged out of the game when the research completes, and you change zones, or login and out without immediately claiming the spell. In other words, unless you are either logged in, or camped in a zone where you can retrieve your researched spell at the time that the research completes, you will need to /petition to get it. I’m getting dizzy! :)

So anyway, a hotfix is imminent, but in the mean time, if you didn’t get your spell, simply /petition and GMs have been empowered to credit the spell to your account.

Order of Rime Icemares

As a reward for completing the Order of Rime quests, a fantastic mount was added in Gu52 — An Order of Rime Icemare (  ) purchasable for 40p. However some felt that it did not have bonuses and characteristics befitting mages and priests, so another mount was added in yesterday’s hotfix — An Order of Rime Mystic Icemare. If you wish to trade up to the Mystic version, and don’t want to pay another 12p in trade, you can use the /petition system to contact Customer Service and request that they swap out the request. Discussion Here

The Shadow Odyssey Signature Quest

The Shadow Odyssey introduced a challenging Signature Quest which rewards those who can successfully complete all 20 dungeons in The Shadow Odyssey with a powerful charm, and irreplaceable cloak from Queen Antonia Bayle or the Overlord Lucan D’Lere themselves.

For unknown reasons, the quest reward was changed in Gu52, and players completing this lengthy quest were offered the choice of either the cloak or the charm. This has now been fixed, and you can use /petition to request both rewards. Be sure to specify which cloak and which charm you want.

Automated Character Transfers

July 14th saw the re-introduction of Automated Character Server Transfers, which have been unavailable for over a year now. The price also drops to$25, which will make it appealing to many folks I’m sure.

There is one bug that some folks are encountering. If your in-game mailbox has ever gotten completely full (who hasn’t?), you may have some “ghost” e-mails stuck in there which will prevent you from being able to buy a Character Transfer Token. Please /petition to get this sorted out.

Customer Service

I would like to ask everyone for a little extra patience with Customer Service this week. I’ve just outlined 4 situations where CS will have to deal with /petitions. I can only imagine they are completely swamped this week.

July 14th Hotfix

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance, Grouping, Raiding

Before I start the notes, July 14th marks the availability of the Automated Character Transfer Service. For $25, you can transfer your character from one server to another. Check out the “Station Marketplace” within EQ2. I don’t have a current link for you as far as this announcement, but I can confirm that the items appeared on the Station Marketplace for me this morning.

July 14th Update Notes

GENERAL

  • The Firiona Vie statue distributed to Fan Faire attendees is no longer a LORE item.

EMPEROR’S ATHENAEUM

  • 4 Warriors are no longer control immune. Enchanters, show us what you got!

KURN’S TOWER

  • The ominous shadow reavers in the Kurns x2 will no longer use Theer Strike.
  • Haggle Baron no longer respawns adds until his final phase at 10%
  • Haggle Baron should no longer ever spawn red and blue bubbles on top of each other.

MUNZOK’S MATERIAL BASTION

  • Umzok now casts his AOE spells at level 88 so players can use potions to dispel them.  The activated automatons he uses during the fight now have less health, and will take longer to automatically buff Umzok during the fight.
  • The giant Cyclops summoned via the Channeling Crystal of the Sullonites will no longer be susceptible to damage prior to possession, so the rare times it would attack the raid rather than assist them, should be gone.
  • During the final Munzok fight, the abyssal channeling proc that charmed tanks use is no longer focus damage, it should be mitigateable as mental damage now.  Energized Void Ripper adds no longer cast frenzied slice, so players will no longer briefly become immune to beneficial spells due to this innate.  The unstable void protrusions they leave on their death now has a larger protective radius and the abyssal rager adds (these are NORMAL adds, not punishment adds) have less health and spawn with slightly less frequency than before.

PVP

  • Charm I and II now have the appropriate duration in pvp.

QUESTS

  • The Order of Rime now offers a mystic icemare suited more for priests and mages who have proven their worth to the Order.
  • Players should now be able to choose between one Ethernaut item, and one cloak from the city leaders when completing the Shadow Odyssey signature quest line.  Professor Fondfate’s dialog should now reflect the change of how the reward it given out.
  • The ghost dwarf for the quest, “Enduring Friendship” should no longer attempt to complete the quest for players who are not on it.

SPELLS
Necromancer

  • Miragul’s Dark Heart Summoning will now properly overwrite older Dark Hearts.

Shadowknight

  • Mortal Embrace will now scale properly across all versions.

VENRIL SATHIR’S LAIR

  • Venril Sathir no longer punishes players via Qxzytl’s Conversion if they have too much mana.
  • The ornamental statues in his encounter now have reduced health and do less damage.

YKESHA’S INNER STRONGHOLD

  • The froglok cavalier, footsoldiers and bodyguards that accompany Ykesha will no longer memwipe to players banished to the back of the zone.

AA XP Slider in Gu53?

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Commentary, Game Updates & Maintenance, Grouping

Fan Faire 2009 presented a lot of ideas and plans for the future. A scant few were nailed down to a specific time frame. We know that we are getting the Shard of Love and Miragul’s Shard in Gu53, as well as the amazing Shaders 3.0 graphics tweaks. However the rest of Gu53 and any part of Gu54 remain a mystery.

You’ll be happy to know that the AA XP Slider is slated to be contained in Gu53! Obviously there is still some time between now and September, so this may change, but this is certainly good news that we will not be waiting until February for these changes.

I think this, more than anything else, will bring folks back to the low level dungeons in EQ2. It will give folks complete flexibility to group with friends for AA, quest, etc.

July 7 2009 Hotfix

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Commentary, Game Updates & Maintenance, Grouping

July 7, 2009 Hotfix Update Notes

EMPEROR’S ATHENAEUM

  • 4 Warriors in Emperor’s Athenaeum should reset less frequently.
  • 4 Warriors have fewer buffs—especially defensive ones.

FENS OF NATHSAR

  • Kaluhm the Northern Lord now drops his treasure correctly.
  • Pulnil the Haggler is less confused about the quests he can offer and advance for those that have completed the quest “Everyone Loves a Snitch”.

GUILD HALLS

  • Players at trustee or higher access can change the appearance of mailboxes placed within their guild hall.

ITEMS

  • Focus: Lich III on necromancer item sets will now function properly.
  • Focus: Bane of Warding V should now properly increase the amount of the ward.
  • Scaling on a number of house items from the monthly “moonlight enchantments” live event has been adjusted.
  • The cloaks from Munzok’s Material Bastion now have custom appearances!

KURN’S TOWER

  • Sir Rouland now casts a detrimental warning on players he is about to kick off the platform (in addition to the onscreen message).
  • The energy bursts in Sir Rouland’s encounter tic for 30% of a player’s max health, down from 40.

_________________

By the way, I have to say that Emperor’s Athenaeum is a pretty inventive zone. 3 of the boss fights have some real creativity to them. The cheering crowds in the Drago’s Arena I found really quite contagious. So much so that I typed /cheer myself!

Finally, if you submitted any questions to the EQ2 Team about the present and future of the game, or even if you didn’t, check out the June 2nd 2009 “Dev Answers” thread.

Tradeskill XP Fixed — July 4th

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

The bug that was preventing the Tradeskill Bonus XP in certain instances such as Guild Halls has been corrected. In addition, this July 4th weekend has been changed to award a +50% bonus to Combat XP, Adventure XP, and Tradeskill XP. Although EQ2Players and the forums were accurate, an e-mail that went out could have been interpreted to suggest that Combat XP was getting a bonus this weekend.

Thanks Rothgar (source)!!!

Tradeskill XP — Check your Window

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

Several folks are reporting that bonus Tradeskill XP is not working in certain guild halls or instances but only on outdoor crafting tables. Check your Tradeskill XP bar carefully to see if you are getting the bonus.

Note that the e-mail notifications that went about were vague and suggested that July 4th weekend was offering bonus XP for adventure and tradeskilling. In fact this is the first AA bonus XP weekend ever offered for EQ2, along with Tradeskill. Combat XP is not currently getting a bonus this weekend.

July 4th Weekend – Bonus AA & Tradeskill XP

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

For the first time ever, EQ2 will be having a Bonus AA XP weekend. Tradeskillers will also get some XP love as well. :) Posted by Kiara on the EQ2 Forums:

To commemorate the holiday weekend, we’ll be turning on bonus AA and Tradeskill exp starting at 4:00PM PDT tomorrow Thursday, July 2nd and running until 10:00AM PDT Monday, July 6th.

For the UK servers it will run from 12:00AM (midnight) Friday July 3rd until 8:00PM Monday, July 6th for folks residing in London (presuming I did my conversions correctly).

Thanks and happy gaming!

   

EQ2 Achievements System

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance

EQ2 is getting an Achievements system! Much like the systems on XBox where you get points for completing certain tasks in certain games, EQ2 will recognize certain in-game achievements. To avoid any confusion, the Alternate Achievement system in EQ2 is officially being renamed “AA”.

If you’d like to read more about the upcoming Achievements system and give feedback or suggestions, check out Rothgar‘s thread on the subject.

Shaders 3.0 Video

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

Thanks to Ke’la who has posted a video captured from the Shaders 3.0 presentation at Fan Faire 2009. The snapshots are from Nek Forest and show a dramatic improvement in lighting. This should appear in Game Update 53.

Once you see the screen snapshots, you realize just how flat, grey, and unrealistic the lighting in Nek Forest has been.

Check it out:

EverQuest II Shaders 3.0 Video

As soon as I get screen snapshots, you’ll see them here on EQ2Wire. :)

Fan Faire 2009 EQ2 News Rollup

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Art, Appearance, Housing, Commentary, Expansion News, Game Updates & Maintenance, Grouping, Itemization, Raiding, Tradeskill

I present the EverQuest II Expansion & Game Update News from Fan Faire in a rollup post. This is partly based on the Fan Faire 2009 Consolidated News by Kalyyn. I started with Kalyyn’s great writeup and have built upon it, adding dozens of new details and minor corrections based on everything I observed at the 2009 Fan Faire EQ2 event in Las Vegas.

I’ve archived the individual news posts I submitted over the weekend. If you still want to read them, they’re [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] [9] [10] [11]

And now, without further ado, my writeup of EQ2′s future in 2009 and 2010. UPDATED AS OF JANUARY 29, 2010:


EverQuest II Expansion: Sentinel’s Fate

  • EQ2: Sentinel’s Fate will be released on February 16, 2010.
  • SF will be based around the EQ1 continent of Odus and will cover Erudin, Paineel, and Ratonga lore. The void storyline will be ending with this expansion.
  • Adventure, Tradeskill, and Guild Level caps all increase to 90.
  • 2 large overland zones (Stonebrunt Mountains)
  • The Hole – a large level 82+ contested zone (similar to Sanctum of Scaleborn) with 3 wings, you spawn in the middle
  • 12 New Group Instances
  • Some existing TSO group instances will also be available in a T9 (level 80-90) version.
  • Guild Level increases to 90. New Guild Hall Amenities and Amenity Slots.
  • No new deities with expansion, nor will there be T9 solo deity quests.
  • Deity miracles may be reconsidered.
  • Group and raid zones will scale in difficulty (not adventure level). A choice will have to be made when pulling or fighting certain mobs that will set the encounter difficulty to easy, normal, or hard. The difficulty level will be set by the manner in which you start the encounter (i.e a boss may have a narrative, depending on your choice, you may get ‘easy mode’ where he sends his minions and escapes, or hard mode where you fight the boss himself)
  • AA cap to 250. New abilities are going to be added to the bottom of the Class (KoS)  and Subclass (EoF) AA Trees, below what is now the end abilities. Some of these endline abilities will be passive, triggering based on specific chains of other abilities being cast.
  • Mythical weapons will not be the ‘Number 1′ weapon, but will have another, important, use. It will be usable as a clicky item to get the unique class-defining abilities.
  • Grouping, Soloing, and Questing will all be viable leveling options.

Artwork-by-Mail, and StationCash

  • HP will be offering — through StationCash — high quality EQ2-related artwork (paintings of Antonia Bayle, Lucan, etc.) prints and eventually in-game items and prints of your character sent directly to your door. One being considered it a hardback book containing pictures of all of your guildmates.
  • The plan is to make it possible, in the future, to purchase expansion packs and new game keys through station cash.

Game Update 55 — Halas and Streaming Launcher

NOTE: Halas has slipped to Game Update 56 and the Streaming Launcher was made available in November.

Halas is being added as a good starting city in Gu55 to coincide with the release of the new expansion, Sentinel’s Fate. Gu55 will be a free download whether you choose to purchase the expansion or not.

The starting race has not been confirmed, but in EQ1 Halas was the home of the Barbarians.

Incidentially, this new area will be considerably streamlined and will be built out as the new EQ2 Trial. The existing EQ2 Trial is a massive download and really not that great a tool at recruiting new players. The new EQ2 Trial will be optimized for download size, will have streaming download, and will really act as a marketing tool for new players.

Extremely preliminary zone art was shown of the new Halas.

Who Gives a Crit

Critical damage stats including Spell, Melee, Ranged, and Heal are being merged into a single ‘Crit’ statistic. Each class will have a critical coefficient. So the same item will offer taunt and melee crit to a fighter, ranged crit to a ranger, and heal crit to a healer.

Double Attack and Ranged Double Attack are being combined into DA, with an appropriate coefficient as RDA is c0nsidered more powerful to a ranger than DA is to other scouts.

Resistance types are being streamlined down to just Noxious, Elemental, Arcane and Physical. Naming on items will not change for variety/lore reasons.

Gear Scaling

NOTE: Gear Scaling has been canceled.

Once considered for the Rise of Kunark, items will now scale down in effectiveness starting at Level 60, eventually “greying out” when the item is 10 levels below your adventure level. The effectiveness of such items will be reduced by 33% at 10 levels.

Legends of Norrath

Set 7 of the LoN cards, Storm Break, goes live on July 9th. This will be the final part of the void series. New loot cards include a cloak with a, once-per-day, clicky effect that completely repairs your gear.

Buffs

The number of buffs and casting time of buffs is being considered, especially for support and healer classes. Certain classes always use the same self-buffs and these may be consolidated.

Class Balance (Bards, Enchanters, Summoners)

Typical raid lineups currently include 3-4 illusionists, 1 coercer, 3-4 dirges, and a troubador. Yet they often do not offer ANY slot to summoners or druids.

Some Enchanter and Bard buffs will become raidwide or applicable to one person in each of the 4 groups. The example given was an illusionist giving Time Compression to one member of all 4 groups. Other buffs could go raidwide. This will be done in such way so that having 4 illusionists will not be a significant advantage over having 1 or 2.

Currently, Brigand “Dispatched” and other debuffs are crucial for raiding and some group situations. Meanwhile, Summoners are finding they rarely get a seat at the table. As a result, Rogue debuffs are being refocused to work on melee, while Summoners step into a new role of debuffing spell abilities.

Also, with regards to Rogues, Brigands and Swashbucklers each have irreplaceable abilities such that most raids have 1 of each. Some of these abilities will become common between the two classes so that any Rogue can be effective in raid situations.

Summoner pet survivability is going to be looked into. Dumbfire pets will now act like a spell with appropriate graphics, rather than being affected by AoEs. These pets will also do spell debuffs in line with Summoner’s new role as spell debuffers.

Class Balance (Druids)

It has been recognised that Heal-over-Time spells come way behind wards and reactives when dealing with large spike damage (mainly in a raid and the hardest heroic settings).

A new component is going to be added to Heal-Over-Time spells for Druids which will save up the heal after each tick if the target is at full health, and further, any leftover heal will transfer to the group member with the lowest health on expiration.

Tradeskill

Over 2000 new recipes for Tier 9.

No Rare Loams in Tier 9. Instead, Ore and Gems will be used to make Expert (Adept III) spells. Ore nodes will always respawn as ore nodes, gem nodes as gem nodes.

Would like to completely revamp Adornment system, but at the very least, new adornment recipes will be Transmuter-crafted only.

Players will be able to be a Tinkerer and Transmuter.

Shaders 3.0

NOTE: Shaders 3.0 will likely slip to Game Update 56.

EQ2 is getting a graphical facelift!

Shaders are small pieces of code which take the textures and apply an effect to them, providing  metallic appearances, glows, bump mapping, caustics (rust, decay), lighting effects, etc.

These are being upgraded from the ancient Shaders 1.0 to Shaders 3.0. Nearly any graphics card since GeForce 3 will be able to handle the new GPU Shaders. At higher resolutions, preliminary tests have shown that framerates stay largely the same. At lower resolutions, framerates of GPU shaders seem significantly improved.

This will not be a substantial download. Each shader is just a few kilobytes. So far, 3,000 shaders have been upgraded.

Nek Forest looks awesome now. The whole idea of a torch in the darkness, lighting up trees, rocks, and enemy mobs looks head-and-shoulders above the current “flat” pea soup grey haze and flat colors on everything.

When the EQ2 developers saw the first screenshots, they thought it was another game.

In addition, Flora Displacement which moved to the GPU last year will still get further performance tweaks (known issue on nVidia cards).

Finally, he’d like to move particles to the GPU but due to some  design decisions, some particles are tied to animations. Will have to go back and separate them out.

There is developer interest in a torch slot, so this is being considered.  Devs would also like to do High Dynamic Range (HDR) in a future update, but nothing is immediately planned.

Mob Designs

Expect several new mob designs with more robust animations. Some seriously funny, cool, and creative new mob designs and revamped appearances to some existing mobs.

* fighting pandas
* displacer beasts
* two headed giants
* stalagmites
* scarecrows

EQ2 Potpourri

It is known that emergency “Stun-and-Heal” is a real detriment to healers and is required for too many encounters. Will be reconsidered.

Rangers — Stream of Arrows will be changed to an AoE. Originally intended as a fill in between auto attacks, but auto attacks are so large now that using it reduces DPS output.

Although it is higher than intended, there are no immediate plans to adjust Auto Attack damage.

Bruisers/Coercers – Drag, thought snap are so overpowered we have to disable them or mobs are trivialized

Conjuror Mythical Pet – This pet is class-defining for Conjurors. However with the current mechanic, that pet would stop leveling at low-to-mid 80′s. Will look at this going forward.

Certain raid encounters will benefit from crowd control, giving enchanters another job besides power regen and buffs.

Will void shards have value in T9? No. A different token system is being used for T9 armor.

Guild Rally Flag - Can we have some means to find out where the guild rally flag is located? Some coding has already been done for this. Putting it in guild window would be somewhat wasteful for those guilds that don’t have this amenity (one of the most expensive amenities FYI), so considering hailing the strategist.

Illusions Driving You Crazy? – A change was made in GU52 that racial illusions pick a random appearance each time they are displayed. This applies to guild hall NPCs as well. Even the devs are annoyed at this change, so are investigating a Magic Mirror house item to set your illusion appearances, and a similar mechanism for guild hall NPCs. Also, some folks make frequent use of different illusions. Look for an Illusion Manager window.

NOTE: Game Update 54 added this Magic Mirror ability.

Smart Loot is being implemented over time. Lock boxes in Mistmyr already have mini-smart loot for each person that loots.

Harvester NPCs could auto-deposit in Harvest supply depot in the future.

More new Armor Appearances in EQ2:SF are coming than are currently in the game. Substantial new choices for mage appearances other than robes, such as tops, pants, etc.

Devs would like to add more mannequin types such as Ratonga mannequin.

Current tier upgrades are coming for Bone Clasped Girdle. Not so much for the bloodthirsty choker.

Out-of-Control Curing

It is recognized that Curing is perhaps getting out-of-control. Casting time of individual cure potions may be considered. In addition, certain detriments are getting different effects on them such that curing that detriment can be worse than leaving it, or may cause another detriment to trigger. The intention was never to stare at the Profit Cure bar the entire fight.


EverQuest II Game Updates & Features

These are features and updates announced at Fan Faire which are now present in EQ2:

  • AAXP Slider, when earning xp, you will be able to set a ratio that is earned as AA instead.
  • Automated Server Transfers will be available on the Station Marketplace for $25.
  • Buffs - Certain persistent buffs now persist through death.
  • Wizard “Rays of Disintegration” has been changed to single-cast spell, instead of causing all mages in the wizard’s group to stop all casting to cast this spell. Rays of Disintegration was very disruptive for Enchanters who must maintain a certain casting order and rhythm to do their jobs.
  • Quest Window received facelift. Namely side-by-side quest list and quest details.
  • Revamped Player Inspect window shows regular and appearance slots  and many more stats.
  • Daily Double and new Hot Zones are now shown in the Welcome Panel.
  • ACT Parsing – Gravitas, Chimes of Blades, and Cures (some healers spend their entire time curing but don’t show up on the heal parse) are now parsed in ACT.
  • The Lavastorm Elevator to WoE was fixed to continue to it’s destination.
  • Kelethin houses received a transparent window. The most expensive Maj’dul house received additional rooms and a skylight.  Kelethin, Neriak, Freeport, and Qeynos houses gained an additional room.
  • Auto-mentoring

Hail an NPC in one of the home cities and you will be able to mentor down in 5 level increments (20, 25, 30, 35, etc.) and complete quests, kill named encounters, etc. at the appropriate level. This does not require mentoring another person and will not offer the extra bonuses given to folks who naturally mentor one of their friends.

To prepare for this feature, a list of named mobs on long spawns in existing zones has already been assembled to have their timers tweaked. Also, low level contested zones will instance themselves (Sinking Sands 1, 2, 3, etc.) in case of large populations.

  • EQ2 Achievements

Similar to XBox Live, EQ2 is getting an Achievements system. The expansion will launch with 500-700 achievements. This will merge the old Slayer titles (kill 5,000 Orcs), plus adventurer titles (complete 20 Heritage Quests), and introduce new titles. For example, number of level 80 characters you have. Whether you defeated a dungeon/raid on the hardest difficulty, Going back and completing old zones while mentored, etc.

The Alternative Achievement system in EQ2 (currently 200 points) is officially being renamed to Alternate Advancement to avoid confusion.

  • Shard of Love & Miragul’s Planar Shard

In GU53 is Miragul’s Planar Shard, a raid zone which will use the new mechanic of difficulty scaling on certain bosses.

The Shard of Love — a casual group zone. The storyline for this zone will relate to Erolissi Marr.


There will be more commentary to come, but those are the salient points about the rest of 2009 as the EQ2 team takes some extra time balancing the live game before plunging into the expansion in February.

More Links!

EQ2 Potpourri

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

Parsing Gravitas, Cures, CoB, etc.
Will consider it.

Determining where guild rally flag is located? Some coming has already been done for this.

Auto mentoring – hail an npc and mentor to a level in 5 level increments. Old quest completion missions. Probably not on PvP.

Daily double shard zone in Welcome window or MOTD? Possible.

Achievements (like CoH or Xbox Live) like 500 kills, 20 heritage quests, etc. In a new tab in the quest window.

Current tier upgrades are coming for bone clasped gridle. Not so much for the bloodthirsty choker. :)

Streamling buffing for classes. Buffing while running was the first part.

Harvester Npcs could auto-deposit in Harvest supply depot in the future.

Lavastorm elevator to WoE will be fixed to continue to it’s destination. This one got a lot of applause. ;)

Teaser of Shaders 3.0 — Nek Castle before and after.

June 23 Hotfix

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance, Grouping, Raiding

GENERAL

  • The Order of Rime illusion no longer has a minimum level for use.
  • Fang the direbear has received some additional defensive bonuses.
  • The Eggstractor should now only work on its intended target (which is, of course, eggs).
  • There is a new EQ2VoiceService.exe from Vivox that should resolve some crash issues that players were experiencing.

ACHIEVEMENTS

Coercer

  • Coercive Healing will once again apply properly to reactive heals.

KURN’S TOWER

  • A cinematic event when slaying Ione (with a quest requirement) has been turned on. Fear Kraytoc’s wrath!

MUNZOK’S MATERIAL BASTION

  • The void sapper adds associated with Ozyk in Munzok’s Material Bastion have reduced health, and don’t spawn as quickly as before.
  • Umzok will not automatically sacrifice his adds to gain their buff as quickly as before.

QUESTS

  • It should no longer be possible to gather every available reward when completing the Shadow Odyssey signature quest line.
  • The Order of Rime barrel of fish and box of bones in Kunzar Jungle will now offer the quest “Fishing for Faction” and “Set of Bone Plates” correctly, when you have completed Kellaen Mednevn’s quest “Stockpiling Stone Mucus” and have the Rime illusion cast.
  • Kallaen Mednevn in Kunzar Jungle now consistently offers her quest “Task of the Rider” to only those that have enough Rime faction and are masking themselves with the Rime illusion.

SPELLS

Necromancer

  • Nylph’s Misty Image has been reverted to its previous illusion state.

Moonlight Enchantments — Every 20th

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

Moonlight Enchantments is a new recurring World Event in the forests of Norrath which will only be available the 20th of every month. I apologize for not getting this information up before June 20th, but it should be available for the 20th of every month hereafter.

This event is now known as Moonlight Enchantments (formerly known as the Enchanted Grottos of Norrath).

Essentially, there is a mushroom ring in each of the forests of Norrath which can be entered once per month (on the 20th) to visit five unique hidden instances. Each has purple shinies and quests to be completed. Both offer house items, charge-based mounts, and illusion forms. The mounts in particular have some…unique choices. Between magic mushrooms, brownies, and sunshine yellow carpets that bloom flowers and belch mushrooms, it was quite a trippy day let me tell you. ;)

For those with a scientific mind who wish to know what these instances look like, here is my best guess:

  • Emerald Halls entry
  • Lower Guk entry
  • Lesser Faydark
  • ? – mushroom area — dig up compost
  • ? – fawns and brownies — make root beer

As always, EQ2Traders is on the ball with a full accounting of these five new forest-based instances and the rewards they offer. It’s quite a selection of house items if you are looking to spruce up your terrarium or take the plunge with a more interesting looking guild hall aquarium. :) Ok, no more bad humor I promise. At least until Wednesday…

Cross-talk in Palace of the Ancient One

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance, Raiding

If your guild has been experiencing heavy lag in Palace of the Ancient One and perhaps noticed that you are seeing combat logs from another guild that is in their own instance ‘leaking’ into your combat logs for this zone, you’re not alone.

There is an amusing screen snapshot that shows partial combat logs that demonstrate this ‘cross-talk’. It seems likely this is the cause of some of the lag in this zone.

There is also another issue with regards to adds continuously spawning, to the point of hundreds of adds appearing if the zone bugs out.

It’s being addressed by timetravelling.

June 18 Hotfix

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance, Grouping

EMPEROR’S ATHENAEUM

  • The final bosses no longer ambush players.
  • Players should get experience from each location discovery within the zone, instead of just the first.
  • Drago’s Boar’s Eruption does less damage.
  • Added a clue to help decipher the floor-set vault lock.
  • Master of the Embalmers summons adds much less frequently.
  • The Curator teleports less frequently.

KURN’S TOWER

  • Ilenee’s Betrayal and Despair no longer heal after they teleport and no longer can teleport to the same room.

VOICE CHAT

  • EQ2VoiceService.exe should now run on Windows 2000.
  • Players should no longer show as talking intermittently when their push-to-talk key is not pressed.

June 17 Hotfix

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance, Grouping

GENERAL

  • Players experiencing problems customizing Wood Elf males should no longer have any issues.
  • Persistent instances should no longer boot players out when they were not committed to the previous instance.

EMPEROR’S ATHENAEUM

  • The final bosses should no longer despawn if players died next to their spawn locations.

Laryngitis

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

Any software update is going to bring bugs.

Laryngitis

I just wish SoE hadn’t tried to completely revamp the voice system on the same day as all this new content was added. Last night we spent most of time just fiddling around with voice, trying to get it clear and stable. Mostly it was choppy, stuttery, laggy, and folks had a tough time joining channels.

We also had to inform a few folks running Windows Firewall that they would need to allow Eq2VoiceService.exe. This service was spun off from the EQ2 client to allow voice chat outside the game as long as the Station Launcher is running.

Instead of running new dungeons as we originally planned, a lot of solo quests and old HQs got done instead. It’s perhaps just as well that we elected not to try the new zones.

Emperor’s Anathenum

Quests and AA

I just wanted to reiterate that our AA prayers have been answered. If you are coming up short on Achievement Experience and have had enough of grey quests, once you reach level 80 (and provided combat XP is not disabled!), your combat XP will be converted to AA XP at a significant rate. It may make sense to pick up City Writs not only to help your guild level but also for AA. :)

GU52 adds a series of solo quests regarding the Order of Rime starting on the Kylong Plains docks. Kaitheel was nice enough to enumerate the quests and their general locations:

  • Kylong Plains has 10 new quests
  • Fens of Nathsar has 31 new quests
  • Kunzar Jungle has 20 new quests
  • Jarsath Wastes has 20 new quests

Timers

timetravelling fixed a bug with all instances that would prevent certain people from zoning in. The error message these folks were receiving — You may not enter an instance created prior to when your previous instance’s minimum lockout timer has expired seems to imply time travel!

Try the Pie

If you are a diehard provisioner, who is more than willing to fling 10 plat pieces and toil for an hour in exchange for some new provisioner recipes, you might want to check out the stats on the recipe reward first. It may or may not be worth your effort. I’m not sure why such an expensive recipe wouldn’t have some main stat bonuses.

I would love to see Advanced Provisioner recipes that produce good to very good food/drink.

From the Shadows

There are several threads going on about the new GPU Shadows which have had an extended stay on Test and have finally made it to Live. The consensus? They look fantastic outdoors in full sun. Indoors? Well, let’s hope we see enough point light sources added that GPU Shadows can be enabled indoors.

More Testing

Ultimately a lot of this comes down to not enough people being on Test and Test Copy. Also if folks go over there and there are issues with zoning and timers, they quickly give up and come back to Live.

My suggestion would be rewards for testing. Perhaps a Quest is offered at a certain time on Test and Test Copy which rewards a short-term 80% mount, or a house item, or guild hall item, or some other rare item. And this time would be announced on Live either in the MoTD or in that handy Welcome box.

Powered by Warp Theme Framework