AA Curve to be Tuned

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

On May 6th, we were all reassured that the “AA problem” is a figment of our imaginations:

In EQII, we allow you to gain achievement experience at a fast rate by questing, discovering new locations, killing named creatures and even by getting certain items without this impacting your adventure leveling.  We feel that this ends up being a good overall compromise so players level up in both systems together pretty quickly.

So you can imagine my surprise when Aeralik popped  into one of dozens of threads discussing the AA Grind with this less than clear comment:

Or maybe someone can just adjust the adventure xp to achievement xp conversion so that you don’t have rely solely on quests.  Sounds like a good idea to me now if only someone would do that

I chipped in with:

Fantastic News, Aeralik. When are you going to do it? Cause right now it’s .0001% AA per kill.

and the surprising response was that we should expect changes in the conversion ratio from combat XP to achievement XP in GU52 (expected to appear on Test on or about May 18th and go live around the first of June).

Of course there was outcry from those folks who through a lucky set of circumstances (started playing EQ2 after KoS, didn’t reach 100 AAs before reaching level 70, didn’t do any quests beyond 100 AAs in EoF, and didn’t do any quests beyond 140 AAs in Kunark, so that all those quests are still available to earn AA) and through dogged determination grinding hundreds of grey quests have managed to reach 200 AAs. In response, Aeralik had this to say:

I would disagree that this is making the game easymode.  People are going through all sorts of strange methods to get to 200aa that we never intended.  The progression from achievement experiences hasn’t changed since it’s introduction with KoS and the initial curve.  As a result of that, level 199 to 200 is almost like doing 79-80 twice by grinding.  We wanted some difficulty in going to 200 so that we didnt repeat RoK where you got to 80 the same time you got to 140 but this is on the excessive side.  Changing it so that someone who runs a dungeon real quick gets 10-15% aa plus a mission bonus just lets you use the current content properly as a source of advancement. You can still go do those gray quests in old zones if you choose but having the option to advance through the current content should be the preferred method.

I’m sure some of those “strange methods” he is talking about was the Icy Keep mission at Frostfell where some folks gained 10-15 AA points just from doing mentored 5 minute runs through Icy Keep.

My opinion on all this can best be summed up by this quote from Gage:

This is a fix that is long overdue.  As long as the conversion % is scaled up enough it will make doing missions, doing instances and actually playing the game AT THE CURRENT TIER a meaningful way to earn AA experience.

The Mandate Detrimental

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

A substantial (and undocumented) change which was made to all of the “key mobs” in TSO dungeons was clearly intended to prevent Monks, Bruisers, and Shadowknights from acquiring Void Shards (and Plat in some dungeons).

But it now looks like this detrimental effect, called Mandate, may affect groups attempting to clear TSO dungeons. Here’s a thread discussing it. I’ve even got art… Thanks Merriestar:


One can assume this is the first half of SoE closing the “Void Shard loopholes” first identified in TSO beta but which got no official attention until just a few weeks ago.

May 5 Tuesday “Hotfix”

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

Posted by Kiara:

GENERAL

  • Overpaying shard chests in Guk Upper, Guk Lower, Guk Stronghold, Nu’Roga, Veksar and Korsha have had their platinum payouts decreased to be inline with the other zones.

ATREBE’S LABORATORY

  • Sannik the Unfinished in Atrebe’s Laboratory has had his damage significantly lowered.

PALACE OF THE ANCIENT ONE

  • Players in combat should now be able to harvest energized crystals within Anashti Sul’s room in Palace of the Ancient One.
  • The Void Handlers associated with Pentaclypse and Ultaclypse in Palace of the Ancient One now do slightly less damage.

YKESHA’S INNER STRONGHOLD

  • The unstable minions that spawn in Ykesha’s Inner Stronghold during the Tyrannus encounter will no longer target priests or mages.

ZARRAKON’S ABYSSAL CHAMBER

  • The Mystmerian Wraiths associated with Zarrakon will not spawn quite as quickly now.

I wonder if anyone will ever run Nu’roga again? Without a 30 plat chest waiting at the end of that 3 hour dungeon crawl (unless you are full fabled/mythical), why would anyone visit this zone again?

And as for the changes that DIDN’T make it into the notes…

The “key mobs” in each of the 20 TSO dungeons have been substantially buffed so that they can no longer be soloed by Shadowknights, Monks, and Bruisers. As with all EQ2 changes, this buff is a complete overreaction and will probably wipe many groups. Each of these key mobs has been buffed to ^^^ with two ^^ adds and now has an effect called Mandate:

  • Forces Target to clear their selected targetPrevents target from changing targets

    Interrupts target

    Disarms Primary, Secondary and Ranged slots of target

    When target begins casting a spell this spell will cast interruption on target

    Inflicts 227-530 magic damage on target

    Interrupts target

    Throws target back

    When target uses a combat art this spell will cast shock on target. Lasts for 9 seconds

    Stuns target

    Interrrupts target

    Epic targets gain immunity to stun effects of 27 seconds and duration is reduced to 3 seconds

File this under “Why don’t you worry about how YOU play the game and quit worrying about how OTHER PEOPLE play the game.”

New x2 Raid Zone

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

Lest ye think that the Ward of Elements zone is the only x2 raid zone we will be seeing for a while, Kander has given us an update.

Timetraveling and I have no plans to make this zone any easier, we feel that the challenge vs reward is about right. If there is anything you feel that is a flat out bug and needs to be fixed, please feel free to PM either him or me and we’ll look into it ASAP.

In other news, we have another x2 coming soon, that will be a tad more… challenging.

The Ward of Elements, introduced in the GU51 Lavastorm Revamp, has gotten a lot of positive feedback from casual and established raiders on its difficulty and rewards. Yes, there are some folks out there who are totally overwhelmed by the difficulty of the zone. But SoE made clear the requirements of the zone before it went live — it was tailored for folks with full Adept 3, Epic Weapon, decent Jewelry, and T2 Void Shard Armor.

Folks who feel comfortable running most of the heroic dungeons in TSO should have no trouble with at least the first 3-4 names in Ward of Elements, and then via internal progression, once several raid members have acquired their T3 armor in the WoE, should be able to start progressing to the last 4 names in the zone.

I know our guild has already got the first 3 named on farm status and we made a valiant attempt at Digg and are going to work on our placement issues. It sure would be nice if those bridges were solid instead of floating rocks that you can slip between and fall to your death.

The immediate supposition has been that the new x2 raid zone will be Kurn’s Tower. We’ll give you more details as soon as we have them.

Spell Naming IV

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance

Bravo to those of you who have managed to keep up with the 39 page topic on Spell Naming. That’s almost as remarkable as those who have managed to read every single post in the 64 page Research Assistants thread!

For the rest of you who just do not have that kind of time, I present some highlights, which offer some insight into just what direction the game is heading. In particular, Aeralik points out how there are some game mechanics which are complex or only really understood by folks who have an in-depth knowledge of how the game works.

Aeralik posted in the Spell Naming thread:

I just want to reiterate that this change has nothing to do with creating new spell names.  Some members of the mechanics team were in meetings discussing balance and why certain aspects were overly complex while giving little gain for that complexity. We outlined several tasks going forward and this is just one of the areas we wanted to adjust going forward.

Take for example mitigation.  Some of you know that a level 70 bp with 500 mitigation is far worse than a level 80 bp with 500 mitigation even though both are plate.    On the broker they look the same but when you put on the level 70 one you probably notice the persona window tells you the bp you bought actually isnt all that good for your level. Unless you are an avid veteran of the boards here, you probably would not have known that and purely by the examination they should have been the same but they arent due to the level difference between you and the level 70 bp.  That is an example of something we are looking to make more obvious going forward and an idea of what we have redefined our goals to be.  Other aspects are things like why not have a common double attack instead of 2 double attacks and needing to make special items with ranged double attack from rangers.  Or why double up on deflection chance and shield effectivness when we can make common fighter items that increase block and deflection.

Back on topic though, Spell renaming just happened to be one of the simpler and more straightforward changes.  We decided to start off with that first while investigating how to handle some of our other concerns like the ones stated above. As a veteran player myself, I understand the players desire to not change spell names.  We have all been through several expansions and level cap raises.  We understand the spell progression and even take it for granted at this point.  If we don’t know when exactly we get the next spell or what its name is, we know what resources to use to figure it out.  Put yourself in a complete newbies shoes though and say you are a wizard.  You get your level 1 spell that you use for a few levels and then suddenly at 6 you get a new version of that with a new name.  You then get an upgrade to this at 12, 20 and 29 before going to the 14 level pattern.   That is a pretty strange pattern to be honest and with varying name structures I can see where some people might get confused.

I’ve seen several comments from people in this thread and others, where the different names have caused confusion.  If there are several here in this thread that means there are probably many more in game.  So if we can make a small change which helps keep some newer players in game then I think that ends up as an overall positive thing going forward.

Edit: Also the current format I am working with is Ice Comet II ( Journeyman ) which is pretty close to what we have today.

I know as a Ranger I would certainly have preferred if the merging of Double Attack and Ranged Double Attack he speaks of had happened prior to TSO launching. Before TSO, except for raid gear, RDA was a very rare stat. Now it’s on everything. And I wonder exactly what this will mean as Aeralik has frequently added less RDA to items than DA with the explanation that RDA = more damage per point than DA. Does this mean that Rangers are going to see a net 10-15% DPS loss on existing itemization when this change goes through? Inquiring minds want to know.

As of April 20th, the Spell Naming polls located in the class forums have been closed and tallying of scores begun. Again from Aeralik:

Thanks to everyone who has voted on spell names so far.  We will be closing down the polls today and beginning the conversion with the winners. I don’t have an exact estimate of when you will be seeing this go to test but it should be within the next few weeks.

No word on whether Conjurors and Necromancers dodged the spell renaming bullet. I have no problem with the spell renaming, but I feel that Conjuror and Necromancer pets should be exempted as they are completely different pets in each tier.

And on April 28th, Aeralik gave us an update:

Just wanted to update everyone that internally this is pretty much done and awaiting our internal testing.  I don’t have an eta as to when it will go to test but probablly not until sometime in early May.  When you view your spell book it will say Ice Comet, Ice Comet II, etc.  Tooltips and spellscrolls will use the same basic format followed by Apprentice, Journeyman, Adept, Expert, Master or Grandmaster.  The old apprentice 2 spells have been removed because the Norrathian Merchant association decided they were not selling enough in the economic downturn.

Any scrolls, recipes or writs you have should automatically convert to the new system.  Also fighter Taunt and Kick have been removed and replaced with the appropriate line instead of a generic all archetype spell.  Priests also had some common class heals which are now replaced by a new spell of the appropriate line name.  Summoners also had their heart and shard spells condensed into one spell for each class.  The new version replaces existing hearts and shards and scales to the level of the caster.

Any old Apprentice II and Apprentice III spells will scribe as Apprentice, I believe.

P.S. Throughout the Spell Naming thread, numerous suggestions have been thrown out about spells being given at low levels and “scaling up” all the way to level 80. However this would eliminate the need for 3 tradeskill classes, eliminate the source of dusts which are used to make mastercrafted poisons and cures, and also eliminate the idea of Masters in high level dungeons.

Consider the suggestion of auto-scaling spells to be about as likely as Beastlords being added to EQ2.

Update Notes: Tuesday, April 21

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

Posted by Kiara:

GENERAL

  • The friends list on the welcome screen will now ignore offline friends if that option is enabled on the community window.

ITEMS

  • The 4-piece bonuses on the Paladin, Monk, Berserker, and Defiler Shadow Odyssey raid sets have been improved.
  • The Lycanthrope Bracelet’s effects in PVP combat have been slightly lowered.

QUESTS

  • One of the lists of names for the Task “Hidden Agenda” could appear in an unreachable spot on a bookshelf. This has been fixed.

WARD OF ELEMENTS

  • Elemental bosses in Ward of Elements now drop non-stacking encrusted gems. The encrusted gems can be unpacked to yield stackable elemental gems. This change allows the gems to be split between players when dropped.

First Hints of GU52

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance

Aeralik has chimed in with the first hints of what we can expect in GU52:

GU52 has a wide variety of things coming. From what I understand there will be an assortment of new quests and additional content which means additional ways to raise your aa points if you havent yet.  You have to keep in mind dfferent people have different responsibilities.  My job is to work on the class balance and combat systems which this falls under and like I said is the first part of a greater plan which we will talk about more in the future.  While I am working on this and some other things,  the other projects do not suffer at all and actually its actually pretty amazing how much stuff is going into this next update.

Update Notes: Tuesday, April 14, 2009

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

GENERAL

  • Players will now see a new Welcome Screen upon login.
  • The Welcome Screen can be disabled by adding cl_show_welcome_screen_on_startup 0 (that’s a zero) to your eq2.ini.
  • You can now ctrl+left click the armor crates in the Station Marketplace window to see all of the armor pieces in the dressing room at once!

MUNZOK’S MATERIAL BASTION

  • A mysterious and powerful void entity has made its presence known on Norrath.  Although its motives aren’t clear, its powerful presence has sent shivers through even the most powerful denizens of the realm.  This zone represents its stronghold and should prove a challenge for even the most experienced raiders.

ACHIEVEMENTS

Bruiser

  • Enhance: Ignore Bruises will work properly

Priest

  • Litany of Combat will no longer affect combat arts

Templar

  • Focused Prayers will now increase hostile spell casting time instead of reducing it.

Crusader

  • Cavalier’s Call will now work correctly.

ITEMS

  • The Harbinger of Malcontent and the Virtue’s Guard are now kite shields with higher protection.
  • Raiders who defeat The Leviathan can now collect their trophy from its corpse.
  • Many raid drops have had +crushing skill added to them where appropriate.
  • The Bruiser epic weapons will once again proc properly.

PVP

  • The Earthen Robe should now cost the same as other chest slot set items

QUESTS

  • Spells used by the Void Stalker on the daily shard quest have been made to cast faster and refresh faster to speed up combat.

WARD OF ELEMENTS

  • The mystery ogre that has been attacking adventurers at the entrance of the Ward of Elements has been removed.
  • The Tempest within Ward of Elements should be far less likely to leash within its own room.
  • During Aiden’s encounter, Smoldering Updraft now grants players in-combat runspeed and slowfall in addition to glide.
  • Aiden’s adds are now tier 8 instead of 9.

April 8 Hotfix

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

One boulder won’t solve your Aiden problems anymore in the x2 raid zone…

Posted by timetravelling:

The adds were not intended to ALL be prevented by the boulders. Please try it again, and let me know if y’all have any issues.

From Kiara:

There will be a quick hotfix at the usual times (7am PDT for US servers and around 9pm PDT for EU servers) to fix the bug with Aiden in Ward of Elements.

April 7 Hotfix

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

GENERAL

  • An issue that was causing UI icons or elements to look blurry and low-quality has been resolved.
  • An issue that was causing low-quality textures on player characters after switching from third person to first person view has been resolved.

EVERNIGHT ABBEY

  • Marcus Thex should turn aggro now once all five clan leaders have been slain.

ITEMS

  • The Dancing Satyr has learned how to dance and is anxious to show off his new moves.
  • Bite of the Wolf will now trigger properly and apply to the warden.
  • Restitution Master 1 should no longer drop from spell tables.
  • The Signet of the Flame Disciple has been changed from +3 spell critical bonus to +3 spell critical to be more inline with the other quest rewards.
  • Vampire and Void Bane proc stacking has been fixed such that additional pieces of gear will increase the damage and proc rate, but will not add additional procs. This is the originally intended functionality.
  • The Stone Tower void shard jewelry set now has Deflection Chance as its 3-piece bonus instead of deflection skill. The block and deflection bonuses should now be roughly equivalent.
  • Corruption of the Elements should now proc on offensive spell casts.

MYSTMYR MANOR

  • Rhul’maldis should no longer occasionally never respond to the volatile liquid.

PvP

  • An issue that might cause no infamy gain when multiple players are attacking a single target has been fixed.

SPELLS

  • Tortoise Shell will once again work properly on group members
  • An issue that would cause Surging Tempest to get into an unusable state has been resolved.

TRADESKILLS

  • The Advanced Armorer Service quest now requires the new improved version of fulginate kite shields.
  • Scholars’ volume 12 books now once again contain recipes for idols, symbols, tomes, and orbs.
  • Jeweler Far Seas writs now correctly accept the new secondary items.
  • An issue where Adornments would disappear when upgrading or imbuing items through tradeskills has been fixed.

WARD OF ELEMENTS

  • Najena should respawn when players watch the flythrough then leave the instance and return.
  • Aiden’s banishes have been re-timed to be closer to the beginning of a land phase, giving players more time to get back to the tower.
  • Aiden’s adds have been linked into sizable groups instead of all in separate encounters.
  • Digg should no longer chain-kill players that die and are rezzed during his fight.

Munzok Will Have to Wait

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

From Kiara:

Hello all!

We’re going to bring the servers down at the usual time (7am PDT) for a hotfix.  We’ll post the notes tomorrow.

Included will be a fix for the overly proccerific procs.  The x4 raid zone, Munzok’s Material Bastion, was planned to be activated tomorrow, but we’re going to hold off until next week for a few more tweaks.

We’ll have the servers back up and running as soon as possible.

Thank you and happy gaming!

From EQ2 Forums

x2 and x4 on 4/7

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

From Kiara:

The fix for the Ward of Elements is planned to go in on Tuesday (4/7) along with Munzok’s Material Bastion (the x4 zone).

People have to have finished Ward of Elements to get the level boosting item that will allow them to kill things in the x4 zone.

No further info just yet on what will happen for people who have completed the x2 zone but had Najena being shy.

When I know more about that, I’ll let you all know.

Here you go.

My Duty

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

It seems it is my duty after each Live Update to report those bugs which managed to slip through. It’s not a job I enjoy, but someone’s gotta do it.

Here’s what to watch for:

  • Warden Mythical/Epic proc is feeding power to the target instead of the Warden. Hire an extra illy or switch weapons until the hotfix.
  • Druid AA “Tortoise Shell” AoE blocker spell is now broken as of LU51. No word on a fix. [discussion]
  • The x4 Raid zone (Munzok’s) did not go live. No word as to why, only to expect an explanation later. Possibly because so few people were flagged to be able to test it? (must have been flagged for and cleared the x2 raid zone) [link]
  • The Autofollow Changes seem to be causing a lot of problems for certain people. The person following seems to randomly run off cliffs, run in circles, swim or run in a triangular pattern, etc.. In other words pathing like a mob rather than following the player. [link]
  • The Access Quest series for the x2 raid zone the Ward of Elements is screwy. This is due to the fact that you must spawn several Elemental Lords, but the 4th pillar in each room needed to spawn the Lord cannot be clicked except by someone who is on step 3 of one of the Cleansing the Elements quests. You can do Cleansing the Elements, More Cleansing the Elements, and Final Cleansing of the Elements once per day, then you are done and are thus unable to click the pillar and proceed on the Access Quest.
  • You can group with someone who has not completed the 3 Cleansing quests and is on the Lord step, or you can do what a lot of bastards out there are doing and hanging out in the rooms and when the Lord spawns, stealing it because you A) have no clue how to spawn it and B) think it is random or on a timer.
  • Wizard Spell Storming Tempest gets permanently locked out and cannot be reused until dying/zoning. [discussion]
  • The Cleric shadows AA ability Sacrifice has been rendered almost completely useless. It now takes 95% of the cleric’s health (which can no longer be mitigated) regardless of how much or little health the tank has.  Any cleric with 5% health for more than .012 seconds during a raid is probably going to die. So why was this change made? Here’s the thread that started it all. [Discussion]
  • There are some comments about the Solo Shard Quest. You inhabit the body of another being and have to use its abilities and spells. I guess they did this so they could design a quest that can be done by any class. Also apparently if you go Linkdead, you can be completely trapped, unable to Evac, Zone, or use Teleport Pads. If this happens to you, you can try to /camp or intentionally go Linkdead again by disconnecting your Internet connection. — thanks brammator
  • The Tinkered Banker in Steamfont is just an NPC. There isn’t a recipe to make one. Boo hiss. [discussion]
  • Automated Hammers in Deep Forge now only spawn when you pull the Doomsmith. I guess this was once again done to try to prevent folks from sharing cleared/mentored instances. [comments]

Raid Trophies

It’s not a bug, but I’m sure some folks would like to check out the new Raid Trophies you can decorate your guild hall with. You need the head or other appropriate body part of the mob, which is a drop off the mob, plus a tradeskiller-made pedestal.

Don’t miss The Brasse’s map of the new x2 zone The Ward of Elements.

Game Update #51

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

GAME UPDATE 51

March / 31 / 2009

FEATURED

  • Weapon Appearance Slots
  • Players now have access to primary, secondary and ranged appearance slots. The wield style (one-handed, two-handed, shield) of the weapons must match the weapons that are currently equipped.
  • Bristlebane’s Day
  • (3/31/2009 – 4/8/2009) Jesters, thieves, bards and fans of mischief are invited to enjoy the festivities that surround Bristlebane’s Day! You never know what laughs and pranks are to be found, during this enjoyable time of year. Celebrators are present in every home city, and the oddest of objects have been spotted in Antonica, The Commonlands, Darklight Wood, Timorous Deep and Greater Faydark! Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for special events occurring only on the highest of silly days, 4/1/2009!
  • Lavastorm Revamp
  • Lots of brand new content has been added in this classic zone. Almost all of the population has been re-tiered for solo players, with a new level 45 to 55 adventure quest line with the industrious–but rather insane Sootfoot goblins, and a new level 40-45 tradeskill quest line. Brand new void invaded areas also feature new level 80 solo quests. Additionally, a solo-able daily shard quest has been added as well as flying horse paths and additional teleporters to make traversing the zone much easier!
  • T3 Shard Armor
  • A new set of shard armor is now available from merchants. This requires Molds that drop from the new x2 raid zone, your T2 void shard armor piece, and additional void shards.
  • Threat Meter
  • Players can now see how much aggro they have generated towards NPC’s in combat. A new UI element will display players’ aggro percentage for their current target or implied target.
  • Players with the most hate will also see the hate value for the player below them.
  • Players’ aggro value will also appear above an NPC’s head, just below their remaining power. The aggro value displayed above an NPC’s head may be toggled off under Options -> User Interface -> Name and Chat Bubble
  • Ward of Elements
  • A brand new level 80 two-group (x2) raid instance has been added! This zone is balanced for players without a proliferation of raid gear, and should provide an exciting challenge to any group of 12! The first six bosses can be tackled in any order, and provide fantastic fabled loot with brand new armor sets upgraded from the tier 2 void shard sets, complete with new appearances! They also drop Molds which are necessary to create T3 Void Shard Armor.
  • You can find the Ward of Elements in Lavastorm by taking the elevator down to Hollow Tower (in front of Deep Forge) to its lowest level.

ACHIEVEMENTS

  • Cleric
  • Sacrifice is now instant cast and recovery but will no longer be absorbed by wards.
  • Allied Prayers will trigger properly if the Cleric is casting.

ATREBE’S LABORATORY

  • Many NPC spells within Atrebe’s Laboratory: The Fabled City of Kor-sha will no longer target other NPCs.

GAMEPLAY

  • Xebnok and other charming mobs should no longer cause clients to crash.
  • Picking character advancement and training spells (i.e. Master II spells) will now attempt to add the spells to your hotbar and indicate where they are with spinning arrows.
  • Group members can now use the /invite command to request that the group leader invite a player to the group. Just type /invite <playername>
  • The entire group will no longer be zoned out of Scion of Ice when 1 person leaves.
  • Chests looted with NBG or Lotto looting options will now give the group 120 seconds to make their decisions.
  • Players that have completed the access quest to Trakanon’s Lair will now be able to zone directly to Trakanon without clearing Veeshan’s Peak.
  • Sarnak teleporter technology in Gorowyn has expedited transport from the base of the main lift to the residential area.
  • Gnomeland security R&D have created a tinkered banker prototype, which is now available for use. No warranty applies, use at own risk, no refunds, gnomeland security accepts no liability for injuries or loss incurred due to malfunction or spontaneous combustion.

GUILD HALLS

  • The guild hall mender will now correctly remember the new coverage setting after it is changed.
  • Paying upkeep on a house or guild hall now requires confirmation.
  • The “Call to Guild Hall” spell to has been modified to have less of an impact on server performance when many players use it at once.
  • Amenities will now move with players when moving to a new guild hall.
  • Any amenities that are not allowed in the new guild hall will continue to be refunded to players’ escrow accounts. If the move results in having more amenities than allowed, players will not be able to move items until some amenities are removed.
  • Permissions for the Harvest Supply Depot amenity have been changed as follows:
  • Any player with access to the guild hall may deposit items into the depot.
  • Only players with Trustee access to the hall may withdraw items directly from the depot.
  • The ability to craft using items in the depot is defined using the permission level on the amenity tab.

ITEMS

  • Forgotten Ring of Souls had a higher bonus on it than was intended. It has been changed to 2 base spell damage and 2 spell crit.
  • The Paladin Voidbeam set’s 4-piece bonus has been changed.
  • The Ranger Flightrift set’s 2-piece bonus now lowers the reuse time of Focus Aim.
  • The Zealot’s Steel armor set is no longer sunshine yellow.
  • The Shadow Odyssey dirge set armor has had its chest and 2-piece set bonus swapped.
  • The Void Shard merchant in the Moors of Ykesha now offers weapons suitable for Brawlers.
  • Items collected from the ‘old’ Ethernaut Relics collection now apply to the ‘new’ Ethernaut Relics collection.  The ‘old’ Ethernaut Relics collection has been deleted.
  • Set bonuses for Shadow Odyssey raid gear and some “T4″ shard-purchased gear have been modified and improved.
  • Flightrift Leggings now have a ranged crit bonus instead of melee crit.
  • The High-Pressure Forged Breastplate awarded by Tertiary Gurowyn Riz’Din in the Timorous Deep can now be equipped by crusaders as well as warriors.
  • The delayed shipment Nagafen statues have finally arrived. Anyone who had /claimed their Nagafen at Rest item should now have a statue in place of the delivery crate.
  • The Thex Mallet can now be purchased from Shady Swashbuckler if you have completed the heritage quest.
  • Darkened Rapidity now adds +10 Deflection Chance to the fighter version of the Dark Mail Gauntlets.
  • The effect from the Talisman of the Ethernauts should now stack with similar effects, like Frenzy of the Dead and Adrenaline Rage.
  • The Tainted Ring of Anashti Sul should now proc Deflection Chance similar to its Shield Effectiveness.
  • The Signet of Vampiric Kind should now also proc Barrier on a successful deflection.
  • Many quest items in Moors of Ykesha have been fixed to no longer trigger procs.
  • Quest items for the Befallen missions will no longer trigger procs.
  • The Wantia Artisan’s satchel and meager harvesting bag no longer hold non-harvested raw items such as wolf fangs. Only items that are actually harvested can be placed in them.

MOORS OF YKESHA

  • Many parts of the solo population within Moors of Ykesha have been reduced in difficulty.

PALACE OF THE ANCIENT ONE

  • Multiple occurrences of Abstalius should no longer spawn in Palace of the Ancient One.

Player vs Player

  • Players can no longer revive while their group is still engaged in PVP based combat.
  • The infamy system has been adjusted.&nbsp; Players no longer lose infamy when they die. However, their infamy will slowly decay over time. Also, a new title has been added.

QUESTS

  • Lord Byron and his cohorts should be much more accessible for updating quests in Stormhold.
  • You can now assist with Qho Augren’s harvesting obsession as you level up, starting at level 5 (adventurer or tradeskill).
  • City writs that previously sent adventurers into Lavastorm have been adjusted due to the changes to the Lavastorm population.
  • Some of the collection items that were previously only available through the Kunark Burynai have been made available again in certain zones.

RAIDS

  • All Shadow Odyssey Expansion raid bosses now have a chance at dropping master spells.
  • Some raid bosses in each zone now drop void shards! (2 per instance, except Zarrakon)
  • A void shard now drops from the final boss of Obelisk of Ahkzul, two from the final boss of the Anchor of Bazzul, and three are present within the Palace of Ferzhul!

RUINS OF GUK

  • The Ruins of Guk: Halls of the Fallen, The Ruins of Guk: the Lower Corridors and Atrebe’s Laboratory: Fabled City of Kor-sha all have had some changes made. Most of the more undesirable spells have been removed from NPC’s and or are now dispellable.

SPELLS

  • Strike of the Ethernauts and similar type effects should now all stack with each other.

TRADESKILLS

  • The Far Seas Supply Division has learned of another mission where a group of talented tradeskillers may be sorely needed.  Madria Varas will have details of the new mission once they are available.
  • Representative Purrla from the Far Seas Trading Company is seeking help from the cities’ tradeskill societies! Tradeskillers level 40+ may wish to assist.
  • Armorers, woodworkers, and jewelers have improved their recipes, and can now make improved versions of tradeskilled shields and secondary items. Old shields and secondary items that already exist will not be affected, only new ones created henceforth.
  • Tradeskillers with their epic earrings may soon find more red collectibles if they look in the right areas–
  • The “Tunare’s Gifts” volumes 1 through 5 and “Bartending for Sadists” recipe books are no longer limited in number of uses.
  • All armorer reaction events in the level 50 range should now result in a success round if successfully countered.

USER INTERFACE

  • Players can now drag equipment from their appearance slots to the macro window.
  • Fixed a bug where damage reduction info was not displayed correctly in the mitigation tooltip.
  • The raid window has a new “Advanced’ mode that will display effect icons for all members of the raid. To switch views, right-click the raid window.
  • A bug in the raid window sometimes causing users to not be drag-able has been fixed.
  • The carat in text boxes will no longer render if the EQII client doesn’t have focus.
  • UI Settings files are now stored in a new XML format.  Existing INI files will be converted the first time a character is logged in.
  • Tooltips of icons in the collection window now look like regular item tooltips.
  • The quest journal can now be sorted by quest name.
  • Players may now specify key bindings for all 10 hotbars in the Options window under Controls -> Hotbar Keys. Right-click a hotbar and choose “Hotbar Setting” to assign a key mapping.
  • The group window now displays a health bar for your group members’ pets.

ADVANCED USER INTERFACE

The following modifications were made to UIScripting / UI Builder and are mainly of interest to the modding community:

  • UIScript now supports the following functions: int(), abs(), floor(), ceil()
  • Results of math operations in UIScript now only return the required precision instead of always forcing 3 decimal places.
  • Fixed a bug parsing negative floating-point numbers.
  • New Scripting events added: OnMove, OnSize, OnTextChanged.
  • The BackgroundEmpty image of a UIProgressbar will no longer render unless the progress value is zero.
  • Support has been added for a new UIColorStyle object.&nbsp; Any object property that accepts a color will now accept a reference to a UIColorStyle object.
  • Players can now press F2 to edit the name of an object in the TreeView
  • Players can press Enter or Escape while editing an object name to commit or cancel editing.

YKESHA’S INNER STRONGHOLD

  • Ykeshan Footsoldiers in the Field General Uktap encounter in Ykesha’s Inner Stronghold now drop warbeads.

ZARRAKON’S ABYSSAL LAIR

  • The mark of attack spell associated with the Mystmerian Wraiths in Zarrakon’s lair no longer persist through death, but the wraiths recast it on newly resurrected opponents within 3 seconds, allowing them to resume fighting with their group.

Game Update #51 — Elements of Corruption LIVE TUE MAR 31th

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance

Kiara chimed in this evening with this news:

This is a head’s up to let you know that we’ll be bringing the servers down tomorrow morning to push Elements of Corruption (GU #51) live!  Unless of course the “big one” hits and Southern California drops into the ocean…  In that case, it might be delayed again…

In addition to this, Vivox will be updating voice chat, so it will be unavailable across all games.

The estimated time for the servers to come down is 7am PDT.

If there are any changes to the plan, we’ll let you know.

Whence GU51?

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance

While we do not have a date yet for GU51 (The Lavastorm Revamp, now minus the Fighter Revamp), we now know that it will be released sooner rather than later, with as many of the fixes, improvements, and content as possible, excluding the much maligned Fighter Revamp.

Kiara posted:

The Lavastorm changes ARE going to be pushed live.

Right now they’re being separated from the fighter changes so that we can push them live (and a little extra polish is being thrown on as well).

I don’t have an exact date yet for the Lavastorm changes going live, but I know that the team is working hard to push them as soon as they can.

When I have a clearer ETA, I’ll be sure to share.

Rothgar was nice enough to post here on my blog and at the forums:

Lavastorm is going live separate from revamp. Right now the plan is that {the Agro Meter} will still make the cut.  The next update to Test should include all of the features that have been accumulating over the past couple of months minus the fighter changes.

GU51 Delayed

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance

Looks like Game Update 51 — Elements of Corruption — including the Lavastorm revamp, new x2, x4 raid zones, T3 armor, and fighter revamp have been further delayed.

From a March 9, 2009 post on EQ2Players:

As many of you know, we’ve been working on Elements of Corruption (Game Update 51) for some time…there really is a lot of good stuff coming, including new zones, new raids, new quests, a revamp of Lavastorm, the list seems endless. However, we’re not quite ready to release it. I know many of you were expecting us to do so this week or next, but at this point, we just need some more time to spend working on it so that it’s just right for all of you. Please be patient with us while we finish polishing the update, and as soon as we have a good date that we can ship out all of this exciting goodness, we’ll let you know.

T3 Void Shard Armor Screen Shots

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

Here is the new Tier 3 Void Shard Armor.

NEWLY REVISED FOR 3/4/09 — T3 Set Bonuses have been adjusted.

Note: Just in case it’s not clear, I have Photoshopped out the Set Bonuses from all but 1 item in each screen shot. Every T3 Void Shard Armor set has set bonuses for having (2), (3), (5), and (7) pieces from the set.

bard2 enchanter2 predator2
Bard, Enchanter, Predator

druid2 rogue2 cleric2
Druid, Rogue, Cleric

summoner2 sorcerer2 shaman2 mystic_female
Summoner, Sorcerer, Shaman*

* You know those whacky Shamans… always running around buck naked wearing just twigs and funny hats. :) Actual screen shots BTW.

crusader2 brawler2 warrior2
Crusader, Brawler, Warrior

shamanbard2 crusaderwarriorcleric2 [placeholder] Bard/Shaman, Crusader/Warrior/Cleric, Brawler/Druid

I realized today that I do not have the T3 upgrade for Wilderness Warrior up.  I will work on getting this up today.

NOTE 1: For those folks with TSO x4 Raid Gear looking at these items and having a heart attack, stroke, or other blood flow stoppage, login to Test and look at your gear again. The TSO x4 raid gear from ToMC/PoAO/etc. (which people are starting to call T4) has been upgraded substantially to make room for these new T3 items.

NOTE 2: Bracers which are boss drops in the new x2 raid zone. These make the 7th piece in each set.

NOTE 3: For those resourceful Assassins out there who have been juggling 3 pieces each of Soul Lancer and Ravagers, the T3 upgrade for Soul Lancer is not usable by Predators. Fortunately Fyreflyte is making a code change to the T3 Void Shard Merchant to accept T2 Soul Lancer pieces to upgrade to the T3 Ravager pieces.

This is being discussed on the EQ2 Forums.

The T3 Void Shard Armor Equation

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

Ok, I hopped over to Test and got the scoop on how the T3 Void Shard Armor seems to work.

There are two NPCs:

  • Assilus Poisonbolt <Elemental Pattern Quartermaster>
  • Borden Chargehammer <Elite Void Shard Armor Quartermaster>

As you run the new x2 Raid Zone “The Ward of Elements”, one or more Molds will drop from raid bosses. To buy your T3 Void Shard Armor Pattern from Assilus, you must have the necessary Mold and the requisite number of Void Shards.

Borden will take your Pattern and the requisite T2 Void Shard Armor piece and turn it into a T3 Void Shard Armor piece.

For instance, I run the x2 Raid Zone and I get my Boot Mold. I give the Boot Mold and 5 Void Shards to Assilus and he gives me a Boot Pattern in exchange. Then I turn to Borden and I turn in my T2 Boots and the Boot Pattern and he gives me my brand spanking new T3 Boots. I do see how this could confuse people. The simplest way to explain it is with this chart:

T3 Void Shard Armor

8 Void Shards + Head Mold + T2 Head -> T3 Head
10 Void Shards + Chest Mold + T2 Chest -> T3 Chest
12 Void Shards + Shoulder Mold + T2 Shoulder -> T3 Shoulder
5 Void Shards + Gloves Mold + T2 Gloves -> T3 Gloves
8 Void Shards + Legs Mold + T2 Legs -> T3 Legs
5 Void Shards + Boots Mold + T2 Boots -> T3 Boots

But we’re not done yet. All of the T3 Void Shard Armor Sets have a 7 piece bonus, meaning you’ll have to get the Bracers somewhere. Note that some armor sets have multiple items of the same slot listed in the “set”. Coercer and Illusionist for instance have 2 headpieces they can choose from.

Tradeskill Love in GU51

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

From EQ2Players.

In Game Update 51 (scheduled for a mid-March arrival), Tradeskillers will get some love:

  1. A new Tradeskill Instance in the Void. This will be a bit different than the existing 3 group tradeskill instances which level 50-80 tradeskillers have been doing since TSO came out.
  2. Updated recipes for shields, orbs, and other secondary slot items.
  3. Guild Hall Trophies were mentioned at FanFaire ’08 and will make their appearance here. These trophies consist of 2 raid “bosses” from the original launch and 2 additional raid bosses from each subsequent expansion. Tradeskillers will make a “trophy mount” which, when combined with some remnant of the boss (presumably its head) will created a guild hall-placeable item. The recipe for this comes from the master tradeskill delegate you bought your AA mirror recipe from.
  4. The Far Seas Supply Division (the new TSO tradeskill faction) has work for you in Lavastorm! New mounts including a lava rhino and flying, flaming, carpet and of course there are the obligatory house furniture items as well. :)
  5. 2 New Red Shiny Collection Collections in Lavastorm exclusively for tradeskillers (NO TRADE).

Push Button Tanking?

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

You’ve probably heard a lot about the tanking changes which were put on hiatus. The cancelled Game Update #51 – Lucan’s Art of War was split into a couple of hotfixes and the fighter revamp got put on hold.

Currently, fighters hold agro through a combination of taunts, hate transfers from Assassins, Coercers, etc., and by putting out superior DPS. In the current situation Shadowknights are putting out more DPS in multi-target fights than some “DPS” classes.

The intention of this well-intentioned fighter revamp is for fighters to be able to hold agro in a fight entirely by taunting and taunt-based attacks. The theory is a fighter should be able to hold agro against classes doing 3-5 times as much damage entirely through taunting.

The issue with this is that taunting is not very exciting. And spam taunting defeats the current mechanism of timing autoattacks. It is well known that a substantial percentage of fighter and scout damage comes not from casting Combat Arts, but the gaps between your Combat Arts when “auto attacks” go off. Those occasional swings, whacks, or arrow volleys can account for 40-50% of your DPS if timed properly.

As proof of just how boring tanking might be under these expected changes, steelbadger has created a single Macro entitled “Tank” which, when pressed repeatedly during a battle, generates more hate and holds agro better than the most masterfully played combat.

macroyx1
Tank Macro

To quote Dasein:

Tanking in its current form is like chess –
the proposed changes reduce tanking to tic-tac-toe.

The response from EQ2 Dev Rothgar was startling:

I’m already seeing people do similar macros and this can’t be good for server performance, spamming it with so many commands in a short period of time.

If the trend moves more towards this type of play style we will be forced to limit the number of spells and command steps you can add to a macro.

Talk about treating the symptom and ignoring the disease!

From EQ2 Forums.

Feb 18 Hotfix

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

BROKERS

  • Players should no longer get an erroneous message about vendor slots being full when first opening the broker after a fresh login.

ORCISH WASTES

  • The Avatar of War will now cast Furious Axe of War at the start of each combat, rather than waiting.

QUESTS / MISSIONS

  • An issue that could prevent some players from getting daily missions if they had completed the previous mission has been fixed.

Odd Bugs

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

Some odd bugs have been introduced into the TSO Mission system and the Broker system as well.

The solution to the TSO Missions is to bring up your Completed Quests and click on any existing missions. They will vanish from the list.

The solution to the broker slots refusing to sell items is to send a mail or click Take Coin.

Feb 5th Graphic Tweaks

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

Don’t you love unannounced tweaks? :)

There are some threads on the EQ2 Forums indicating that some graphics were revamped as part of the Feb 5th update. The ice in Everfrost is more translucent and looks really cool. However an inadvertent change was made to the grass in the Antonica Guild Hall. It looks rather black and spotty now. A hotfix is planned.

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