You can now watch today’s June 4th Livestream on Twitch
and on Youtube:
You can now watch today’s June 4th Livestream on Twitch
and on Youtube:
From EQ and EQ2 Executive Producer Holly “Windstalker” Longdale on the EQ2 Forums:
What’s Up for EQII?
We have a lot in store for our intrepid Everquest II players. We’re excited to be discussing the launch of two new Time-Locked Expansion Servers for PvE and PvP sometime this year.
Along with that, the team is moving forward with a strategy of treating our players as real gamers who don’t need to be handheld for everything they do. What this means is we feel we need to trust our players to learn and achieve things without us having to give you all the information ahead of time. There’s a big difference between “head southwest and uncover the mystery of the green fog” and “go find the green fog that I put on your map for you.” Our players are smart and we want EQII to be a thinker’s and strategist’s game.
Today we release a new Rumrunner home with a décor set for our decorators, a store version of the Zeppelin mount for anyone that likes to float about in style, and new Summer Ethereal items will start dropping in Altar of Malice heroic zones (including Rum Cellar) for our adventurers.
We’re also currently testing Character Restore and Item Restore functionality on Beta which we hope to release soon.
On Tuesday, June 23, we will release Echoes of Faydwer Fabled Dungeons with all new updated loot and fun for level 100. There are 3 heroic dungeons, 3 advanced solos and 1 raid with a challenge version. Here’s the zone list:
· The Fabled Acadechism [Heroic & Advanced Solo]
· The Fabled Court of Innovation [Heroic & Advanced Solo]
· The Fabled Crypt of Valdoon [Heroic & Advanced Solo]
· The Fabled Freethinker Hideout [Raid & Challenge Raid]
Then, in early July, we’ll introduce the ability to quest and worship Erollisi as a god for new miracles and blessings.
We can’t forget Tinkerfest! It will launch on July 17 with new content!
And later in the summer, we’ll see more Ethereal weapon drops.
For those who are curious, we’re doing a fair amount of technical and backend work to help our performance and to move toward cross-server functionality. We also want to address server population issues. We’re focusing on the first part of this work which is adjusting our architecture.
We also have been continuing to work on the content for our release later this year. Toward the end of summer as we head into the Campaign release timeframe later this year, we’ll be releasing some prequel events and designers will be sharing details about upcoming features with you. Today in our Twitch stream, designers previewed an upcoming feature that allows you to increase stats on new equipment. We also have a new item type in the works for this year’s campaign referred to as Relics which are extremely powerful items where only one can be equipped at a time, per character. Kander, Caith, and Kaitheel (yikes!) discussed these features in our livestream today and you can watch the replay here.
We’re enormously grateful for the support of all of our players and we’re excited about what’s coming up for EverQuest II!
Sincerely, as always,
Holly “Windstalker” Longdale
Exec Producer, EQ & EQII
Today Robert “Caith” Fouts, Nathan “Kaitheel” McCall, and Kyle “Kander” Vallee were joined by EQ2 Community Manager Ry “Roshen” Schuller to talk about upcoming changes in this fall’s expansion-sized Campaign, or as the EQ2 team has been calling — the Campansion. Here are my rough notes, subject to my interpretation and these are mostly not direct quotes. Any mistakes are my own!
Players have be able to upgrade armor through Gems and adding Essences to change the Damage type on Weapons. However this has been very limited as it requires the devs to create hundreds of items for each boost/change. A new feature is coming with this fall’s Campansion #12 (Expansion-sized Campaign) called Amplifying which will allow items to be customized and upgraded on a more detailed level. Not all items in the game will be upgradeable, as this will be limited to items in the expansion and perhaps a few AoM/RC items. For example, you might get a bauble from a zone that allows you to boost stats or add a totally new stat to an item. You will be able to change the Weapon Delay (1, 2, 4, 6, 8) and Damage Type (Mental, Fire, Noxious) on Weapons.
current prototype of Amplifying
Amplifying requires a dropped material (which could be rare) to boost an item. We’re not sure what it costs just to change the stats, delay, or damage type on an item. The prototype shown just costs plat, but the finalized version will use a material. This will work alongside but not replace Reforging which will largely remain in its current form. The plan is to have a longer expansion Beta test this year so that more feedback can be collected on this feature.
Update: “Unlocking US live servers now.” – Bunji
Update: Downtime is now expected to extend until Noon Pacific time. However, the link to purchase the Rum Cellar Campaign is now active, so we can pretend that’s the pre-order time window.
Today marks the launch of the Rum Cellar Campaign which can be purchased here.
For those that haven’t been following along, the Rum Cellar Campaign is the first attempt at delivering Downloadable Content (DLC) for a price, rather than through traditional expansions (not counting the old Adventure Packs that were meant to be in addition to expansions, not a replacement for expansions). It contains the “Far Seas Distillery” with 1 Solo, 1 Event Advanced Solo, 1 Heroic, 2 Event Heroics and a large Raid version for $15 ($13.50 for All Access). Altar of Malice is required and should be available as a bundle for those that have yet to purchase AoM. There will be another large Campaign this fall around the usual expansion release time. The content released throughout the year in these Campaigns should add up to what we might have traditionally seen in a yearly expansion.
Roshen posted this on the EQ2Forums:
US EverQuest II Live Servers and website will be brought offline on Tuesday, April 28, 2015 at 7:00AM PDT* for the Rum Cellar Campaign Patch. Estimated downtime is approximately three hours.
Players will NOT be able to play this campaign until after this patch has completed, even if they purchase the campaign prior to this maintenance.
EU EverQuest II Live Servers will be brought offline on Tuesday, April 28, 2015 at 7:00AM PDT* for this update. (Approx. 3:00PM London Time on April 28, 2015). Estimated downtime is three hours.
Alle deutschsprachigen Server werden um 16:00 CET am 28.04.2015 zwecks einer Serveraktualisierung heruntergefahren. Die vorgesehene Stillstandszeit wird etwa 3 Stunde(n) betragen
Le serveur de langue française sera arrêté à 16:00 CET le 28-04-2015 pour une mise à jour du serveur. Le temps d’arrêt sera d’environ 3 heures.
Update notes for this downtime can be found in the Game Update Notes forum once they’re available.
Keep an eye on the EverQuest II forums for news if additional downtime is needed.
EDIT: Approx downtime is now three hours.
EDIT 2: This downtime will affect the website as well.
Update: As part of the launch festivities, Daybreak Games will be livestreaming as well:
Don’t miss today’s EverQuest 2 stream! To celebrate the launch of the Rum Cellar Campaign, we’ll be streaming today, Tuesday, April 28, 2015 starting at 11AM PDT* on twitch.tv/EverQuest 2
If you told me last November that nearly one third of Altar of Malice expansion purchasers would opt for the never discounted $89.99 Collector’s Edition, I’d have suggested therapy or possibly drug treatment. If you read the comments here on EQ2Wire and on the official EQ2 forums when the pricing was announced, the universal response was howls of protest. Yet to this day, the expansion not only continues to show good sales numbers, but fully one third spring for the Collector’s Edition. Perhaps we ARE the vocal minority.
So with that background comes today’s Marketing-driven blitz (yes on April Fool’s Day for some reason) of how EverQuest II’s content will be released going forward. First up, here are the Press sites that participated in Round Tables with the EQ2 team this week:
Have you taken the EverQuest II: Altar of Malice expansion survey? If not, head here:
Personally as someone who has dedicated some time to writing good survey questions, this has to be one of the most generic surveys I’ve seen. On one hand, there is an entire page dedicated to the six raid zones in the expansion, yet the entirety of the tradeskill and heroic content are each distilled down to a single 1-10 rating question. What if you love the zones, animations, populations, humor, and the music, but you dislike difficulty, how would you rate that?
It’s pretty clear that Marketing largely referenced the expansion’s press release without much (if any) consultation with the EQ2 team. I wonder what if anything SOE will learn from this survey. I feel that the way the questions are written is prone to lead to invalid conclusions.
Starting today, EverQuest II’s 11th expansion Altar of Malice will become available for purchase for Free-to-Play EQ2 players both at EverQuest2.com, and through Steam. All Access customers were able to buy and play the expansion some two weeks ago starting on November 11th. Pricing remains unchanged, at $39.99 for the standard edition and $89.99 for the collector’s edition.
Coinciding with the platform changes to allow F2P players to buy the expansion, there are some login issues affecting EQ2 players. Update as of 35 minutes ago:
From Afista on Twitter (also posted on the EQ2 Forums):
Login issues should now be resolved. Thank you for your patience and please let us know if you encounter any problems! [Afista]
— EverQuest II (@everquestii) November 25, 2014
First up, starting at 10:00am PST tomorrow (1:00pm EST, 18:00 GMT, 19:00 CET), Free-to-Play EQ2 players will be able to buy and start playing the Altar of Malice expansion.
Now for the downtime announcement…
US EverQuest II Live Servers will be brought offline on Tuesday, November 25, 2014 at approximately 7:00AM PST.
Estimated downtime is 1 hour.
EU EverQuest II Live Servers will be brought offline on Tuesday, November 25, 2014 at approximately 9:00PM PST. (Aprox. 5:00AM London Time on 11/26/2014)
Estimated downtime is 2 hours.
All accounts will also be able to purchase and play our new expansion, Altar of Malice, at 10:00AM PST.
- Fixed a bug where general achievements would export to census with “Altar of Malice” as the subcategory.
From the EQ2 Forums:
Greetings Norrathians!EverQuest II is currently celebrating ten amazing years of gameplay. To celebrate our 10th anniversary, we’re giving away 10 Collector’s Editions of our new expansion, Altar of Malice!You can enter the EverQuest II – Tenth Anniversary Contest from now until 11:59pm PST on Sunday, November 23, 2014. We’ll randomly select ten winners from the eligible entries to win a Collector’s Edition code for Altar of Malice.Thank you to all of our wonderful players and happy anniversary!
All Access subscribers who purchased the All Access expansion have been chugging along working on quests, zones, and more since late Tuesday, and so far there haven’t been too many show-stopping bugs, however a few always creep in and we are collecting them here.
There are two bugged quests in Kithicor, not required by the Altar of Malice signature quest, which otherwise prevent progress in it. “Sustaining Souls of Bloody Kithicor” and a request to place blessed salt to the souls of slain Teir’Dal by the quest “Momentary Peace for Bloody Kithicor“. The workaround for these seems to be to cancel or re-apply the Belt Illusion associated with the questline.
We’re not sure how serious this is, but there seems to be a detriment that does not cancel when the related mob is killed. Extemper indicates that a fix is coming soon.
From the EQ2 Forums:
You won’t want to miss the EverQuest II 10th Anniversary Stream, this Friday, November 14, 2014, running from 2-3PM PST. You can watch us on www.twitch.tv/everquest2
Tune in to watch Holly “Windstalker” Longdale, Kyle “Kander” Vallee, and Ry “Roshen” Schueller as they show off the newest expansion Altar of Malice, and play the new Aerakyn race. The team will also be running a special 10th Anniversary in-game event on the Freeport server that you certainly wouldn’t want to miss!
Do you like giveaways? We got them! During this one hour stream there will be goodies that some of our luckiest viewers will pick up as part of the 10th Anniversary celebration.
You DON’T want to miss this stream! Will we see you in-game or in Twitch chat?
Time Zone Conversions
This may seem self-evident, but playing the Altar of Malice expansion these next two weeks (November 11-24) prior to the widespread release is a thank you given to All Access subscribers for their continued support. Free-to-Play users will be able to buy and start playing Altar of Malice on November 25, 2014.
If you are currently All Access, bought Altar of Malice, and let your All Access subscription expire during the early access, you will be booted to Antonica and not able to access expansion zones until November 25th!
My opinion: It would not be fair for people who renewed their All Access just to buy Altar of Malice to then it lapse but keep playing.
EQ2Wire was fortunate enough to interview EQ2 Lead Designer Kyle “Kander“ Vallée for today’s Altar of Malice expansion launch to talk about a broad spectrum of topics including:
This is my first (and possibly only) podcast recording so please be gentle. I’m not an old pro at this like Dellmon, Aliscious, and Osgz of EQ2Talk.
UPDATE: Servers are now up!!
Table of Contents
From the EQ2 Forums:
EverQuest II’s 11th expansion, Altar of Malice, launches today for All-Access Members! Are you ready to take up arms and unravel the mysteries of The Shattered Seas? This expansion is packed full of adventure and brings a ton of exciting new features to players! Let’s take a look at some of the things you can look forward to in Altar of Malice.
The Altar of Malice expansion is now available for purchase for All Access subscribers!!
Answers to Frequent Questions
After some initial confusion, the downtime for tomorrow’s big update for the Altar of Malice expansion has been announced. ALL servers will go down at 5:00am PST tomorrow.
Time Zone Conversions — Downtime for ALL SERVERS (US, EU, RU, JP)
Today is the last day to run the Altar of Malice solo quest lines, heroic zones, or do the tradeskill questline and get rewards for your live characters.
From Afista on the EQ2 Forums:
The Beta server will be coming down tomorrow morning with the game update. It will not be coming back online after tomorrow’s All-Access launch of Altar of Malice.
From EQ2 Senior Producer Holly “Windstalker” Longdale‘s twitter:
Almost to AoM expansion! Servers will come down about 5am and we are aiming to be live at 12pm pst. Purchasing up about the same time. #EQ2
— Holly Longdale (@WindstalkerEQ2) November 10, 2014
Presumably this means we’ll be able to buy the Altar of Malice expansion around the same time servers come up, but possibly ambiguously sooner.
From Akil “Lyndro” Hooper on the EQ2 Forums:
For centuries, Ssraeshza, the last bastion of the Shissar, loomed forebodingly over the gray plains of the moon, Luclin. During The Shattering, Ssraeshza was among the chunks of Luclin that rained down on Norrath. The temple landed inverted within the Phantom Sea, where it formed the island known as Grim Shales. The shattered walls of the temple created a terrible landscape, treacherous to even the hardiest of explorers.
Though the great temple sits in near ruin, a dark force has begun its reconstruction. The Akheva and their subjugated Grimlings have been silently restoring the temple’s focal power, venturing out into the Shattered Seas to procure the necessary components. What mysterious designs do they have for our world? Can they be stopped before their shadow stretches over all of Norrath?
EQ/EQ2 Community Manager Ry “Roshen” Schueller interviews designers Jeffery “Extemper” Bard and Carlos “Gninja” Mora as they give us a sneak peek of the stunning The Tranquil Sea and elaborate Brokenskull Bay, two new zones in the upcoming Altar of Malice expansion releasing next Tuesday for All Access members and November 25th for everyone else.
The Tranquil Sea is the first overland zone players encounter in the Altar of Malice, and contains the Isle of Refuge, Alla’thoa, and much much more. Brokenskull Bay is a swashbuckling instance styled after Tortuga and will be available in a few different heroic versions, an advanced solo adventure, plus a level 96-100 Contested zone to help players who wish to level up through wanton slaughter.
We are now seven months past the “End of Life” date for Windows XP, but you wouldn’t know it from the number of players reporting issues with the Altar of Malice beta. While the crashes being reported are far from exclusive to any particular version of Windows, it’s a little frightening how many EQ2 players are still running a version of Windows which is not receiving any type of security updates and which is limited to just 3GB of memory (with a scant 2GB of that being made available to EQ2).
No game developer wants to release an expansion that renders obsolete the computers of paying customers. However through financial hardship, lack of technical know-how, or just plain inertia, some EQ2 players have been left behind on positively prehistoric versions of Windows on what are frequently perfectly good computers more than capable of running Windows 7 (which, from a user experience, is almost identical to Windows XP). Worse, these players get a degraded experience as nothing cripples a fast CPU, motherboard, and video card like a 12 year old operating system.
All this said, the EQ2 team are working hard to make sure that the beautiful new Tranquil and Phantom Sea zones work just as well on people’s computers as all the existing parts of Norrath. EQ2 Senior Producer Holly “Windstalker” Longdale took to the forums to assure players that support is a top priority:
From Akil “Lyndro” Hooper on the EQ2 Forums:
Deep within Kithicor, the Primordial Malice, resides a cult devoted to the Demigoddess Lanys T’Vyl. As a show of dedication to their fallen matriarch, members of the Primordial Malice worship the state of undeath. They desecrate their bodies with bone piercings and intricate tattoos, flaying their skin to the muscle, in an attempt to ride the line between life and death. The Ossuary of Malevolence is the pinnacle of that devotion.
The Ossuary of Malevolence is a massive cathedral built with bones as brick and mortar, constructed to harness and focus the power of necromancy. Members of the Primordial Malice use their temple for dark rites. Lately the power of their magic has increased as they build to complete some new ceremony.
Not sure how we missed this, but Massively posted their sneak preview of the Altar of Malice expansion on October 14th.
From MJ Guthrie on Massively.com:
When EverQuest II’s next expansion, Altar of Malice, was announced at SOE Live in August, we heard about upcoming features, perused concept drawings, and even saw some screenshots. As exciting as all that can be, nothing compares to actually getting in the game and seeing the living breathing world of Norrath. And that’s exactly what I got to do last week on a tour with Senior Producer Holly Longdale and Creative Director Akil Hooper.
While we have to wait a bit longer to hear more about the Aerakyn (the new winged dragonkind race) and what special goodies will be included in the collector’s edition, the tour of the zones allowed me to bask in the beauty of the artwork while weaving through dinosaurs, pygmies, and my favorite-yet-long-lost starting zone. And it definitely made me even more excited for the upcoming release of Altar of Malice!