SOE Maintenance: Monday, October 27 @ 7AM~9AM PDT

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance

From the EQ2 Forums:

Attention players: we will perform an SOE-wide maintenance beginning at 7:00 AM PDT* on Monday, October 27, 2014. We expect this maintenance to take approximately two hours.

Game, web, and forum log-ins may be impacted while the maintenance is underway.

Thanks for your patience.

Time Zone Conversions

  • PDT: October 27 @ 7:00am ~ 9:00am
  • EDT: October 27 @ 10:00am ~ Noon
  • GMT: October 27 @ 14:00 ~ 16:00
  • CET: October 27 @ 15:00 ~ 17:00
  • AEST: October 28 @ 1:00am ~ 3:00am

NOTE: The United States (as per a 2005 law which went into effect in 2007) will go off Daylight Savings Time next weekend. The rest of the world Most other countries in the Northern Hemisphere went off DST last night.

Altar of Malice Beta Patching Issues

Written by Dethdlr on . Posted in Expansion News, Game Updates & Maintenance

Update: This issue has now been resolved. 

Having issues loading the non-streaming Altar of Malice Beta?  You’re not alone.  Starting about 6 hours ago people have been experiencing an error when trying to patch the non-streaming client for Beta.

Holly “Windstalker” Longdale just confirmed on Twitter that they are aware of the issue and are testing a fix.  She’s also written this on the forums:

“True, true. Sorry folks. We are updating a lot of code to handle memory issues better. There were a few unexpected results…which were bad, obviously.”

If you can’t wait for the fix, the streaming client seems to work if you uncheck “Full Download”.  You can get the streaming client here: http://launch.soe.com/installer/EQ2_Streaming_setup.exe

 Update:  Windstalker just posted this on Twitter:

Full Download patcher errors on Beta may not be fixed until tomorrow. We don’t want to interrupt players on server. Streaming works.

So if you want in before tomorrow, here’s the long version of one option for streaming.

Here’s the short version:

  1. Download this and run it: http://launch.soe.com/installer/EQ2_Streaming_setup.exe
  2. When it asks where to install it, add ” Streaming” to whatever it says and install it.
  3. When the launcher screen appears, change the version to Beta, uncheck Download Full and click Apply.
  4. While it’s downloading the 200mb or so, copy your Beta_charactername_eq2_uisettings.xml files from your normal EverQuest II\BetaServer folder to your new EverQuest II Streaming\BetaServer folder.
  5. When it’s finished downloading the 200mb or so, click Play.
  6. On the character select screen, wait til the little dragon stops running to make things a bit less laggy, then load whichever character you want to play.

Then, once all this is over and the regular version is working again, you can delete the entire EverQuest II Streaming folder and be back where you were before any of this happened.

There are of course other ways to do this, but this was the easiest for me. Your mileage may vary. Some restrictions apply. Void where prohibited. May cause shortness of breath, nervousness, and excess sweating. If any of these symptoms persist after the next patch, welcome to beta.

Opinion: Why $90 for a Collector’s Edition Could Cost SOE Big

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance

happygilmore__140313201626

If EverQuest II: Altar of Malice were a brand new game coming out today, then a $90 price for the Collector’s Edition would be completely justifiable. We’ve seen this price point with Founder’s Packs in Landmark, and in other highly anticipated new games from Trion and other developers. But Altar of Malice is not a new game. It is an expansion — nee a DLC — for a ten year old MMORPG.

Technically, EverQuest II’s last four expansions (ToV, CoEAoD, and DoV) have carried a sticker price of $89.99. However this price has only gone into effect after a generous Pre-Order window at a more reasonable $59.99. I think it’s safe to say that the vast majority of players who purchased the Collector’s Editions did so at this early stage, even if their accounts did not yet contain max-level characters.

EQ2 ZAM Previews EverQuest II: Altar of Malice

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Expansion News, Game Updates & Maintenance

OssuaryofMaliceEntrance

It looks like Marketing is getting started earlier this year as EQ2 ZAM has already released their Altar of Malice expansion preview with some nice screenshots. No doubt Massively, TenTonHammer, and MMORPG won’t be far behind with their own press tour writeups.

Altar of Malice marks the 11th expansion for EverQuest II. First announced at SOE Live 2014, the expansion will add two new overland zones as well as several new Advanced Solo, Heroic and Raid dungeons. The level cap will increase from 95 to 100 for adventuring, tradeskill and guild levels, and both tradeskillers and adventurers alike can enjoy a variety of new quests and collections.

We recently joined Senior Producer Holly “Windstalker” Longdale and Creative Director Akil “Lyndro” Hooper for a preview of some of the zones we’ll get to visit in Altar of Malice, as well as some extra tidbits of info about the expansion.

Continue reading at EQ2 ZAM…

Update Notes: Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Game Updates & Maintenance

From Bunji on the EQ2 Forums:

GENERAL

  • All Access members can now send and receive mail attachments from almost anywhere.
  • Added an option to default applying Adornments to manual selection. You can find this option under User Interface – Game Options – Manually Select Items to Adorn.
  • Rewards earned in the Altar of Malice Beta may now be obtained via /claim.

TRADESKILLS

  • Grandmaster recipe for Winds of Velious IV now requires the correct master component.
  • Corrected several issues with Conjuror Grandmaster recipes above level 80.

SOE Login Servers, Forums Experiencing Outage

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Game Updates & Maintenance

eq2wire-servers

From Twitter approximately 30 minutes ago:

UPDATE from Holly “Windstalker” Longdale on twitter:

Apparently this was a network issue at SOE’s ISP and not something they had control over.

Nerf! Research Reducers Removed from Skyshrine Zones

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Game Updates & Maintenance, Itemization

gu63-skyshrine-battle

Shortly after the Skyshrine Gu-spansion (a game update that raised the level cap, added a new overland zone, 3 advanced solo zones, 4 heroic zones, and 2 raid zones), a reward was added to the advanced solo versions of the Skyshrine zones — Research Time Reducers. Previously these had only been available as a reward from completing Dungeon Maker zones.

Research Time Reducer items reduce the time it takes to research a player Spell or Combat Art to its next quality tier, such as from Adept to Expert or from Expert to Master. They ranged from a savings of 6 hours to a full 7 day shortcut.

In February 2012, the benefit of the Research Reducers was dropped from seven days to one. Just one month later, Research Reducers, along with nearly every other useful reward, were completely removed from Dungeon Maker. Players are now reporting here and here that with Tuesday’s update, these potions have been removed from the Skyshrine zones as well. The only way to acquire them seems to be an SOE referral program.

These are now the only 3 ways to get Grandmaster 90-95 spells:

  • Wait 40 days.
  • Pay $20 in StationCash.
  • Spend 4-8 hours harvesting to get the spell rare (or prepare to pay out the nose*) and hire a crafter if you happen to be on a server with a player who has discovered the recipe**.

* Current estimates to Grandmaster a max level character are 8-10,000 plat if you do not harvest the materials yourself.
** Only 2 players have discovered the level 90-95 Grandmaster recipe books, and they are both based on Guk.

Altar of Malice Beta Opens to All (incl Free-to-Play) Today

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Expansion News, Free-to-Play (EQ2X), Game Updates & Maintenance

From Holly “Windstalker” Longdale‘s twitter:

UPDATE: At 5:00pm PDT last night, the Altar of Malice beta finally opened for all players, whether Free-to-Play or All Access subscriber.

From the EQ2 Forums:

Everyone can now join the Beta server and experience Altar of Malice before it launches. Are you interested in what’s become of the Isle of Refuge? Do you long to discover the treasures hidden in the Phantom Seas? Beta testing is a great opportunity for you to try out the features of Altar of Malice and provide us with valuable feedback so that we can make this the best expansion yet!

Playing Altar of Malice on the Beta server ahead of time also has perks for your live server accounts! There is more information coming soon about the rewards players will be able to earn.

Here is some consolidated information to help you get started in Beta:
How to provide testing feedback:

  • Use the /bug or /feedback command in game to open a window and submit information
  • Post issues and suggestions in the Altar of Malice Beta Forums

How to copy your character over to the Beta server:

  • Log in your character and then type the /beta command.

Continue reading on the EQ2 Forums…

If you want to get into Altar of Malice beta in 20-30 minutes instead of after 12-14 hours of patching, read our “Altar of Malice Beta Opens” article to see how to quickly copy over your live files to the beta folder.

Update Notes: October 14, 2014

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Game Updates & Maintenance

From the EQ2 Forums:

US EverQuest II Live Servers will be brought offline on Tuesday, October 14, 2014 at approximately 7:00AM PDT. Estimated downtime is 1 hour.

EU EverQuest II Live Servers will be brought offline on Tuesday, October 14, 2014 at approximately 7:00AM PDT. (3:00PM London Time). Estimated downtime is 2 hours.

UPDATE #5: Issues with Valor have been resolved as of 12:30pm PDT.

UPDATE #4: Hot off the presses, here are the Update Notes for this morning’s update:

POPULATION / ZONE PROGRESSION

  • Cut-Me-Own-Tail Ssstibbler will now grant the wrinkled, crumpled note from his merchant inventory to players that require it.

ABILITIES

  • Grandmaster Shard of Essence, Najena’s Essence Summoning, Dark Heart and Miragul’s Dark Heart Summoning will now correctly summon Grandmaster shards and hearts.
  • Shard of Essence, Najena’s Essence Summoning and Dark Heart will no longer overwrite higher level shards in the target’s inventory.

LIVE EVENTS

  • Corrected an issue with the Pumpkin King title granted from the Pumpkin Pulper Achievement. Characters that have previously pulped over 500 pumpkins may purchase the title for free from the Nights of the Dead merchant.

UPDATE #6: An unannounced change in today’s update is the removal of Research Reducer items as rewards from Skyshrine and other zones.

New Adornment Window to Become Optional

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Game Updates & Maintenance

On September 23rd, a new Adornment UI was added to EQ2 which presents a list of items that adornments can be applied to, rather than allowing you to apply adornments directly to the equipment tab. The new interface has not been universally liked:

For those who dislike the new window, we have news from EQ2 Buildmaster Bunji that the new Adornment window will become optional:

I’ll add an option that allows you to default back to old manual select style.

But instead of everyone just disabling the new window, it would be helpful to have a discussion about what could be done to make applying Adornments less tedious and potentially confusing and just a better experience overall…

EQ2U Updated for Grandmaster Spells, Recipes, Also Check out our Materials Chart

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Game Updates & Maintenance, Itemization

spellbook

Character Spell Lists Now Support Grandmasters

We’re happy to announce that EQ2U has been updated to fully support Grandmaster spells and combat arts. First up, Character Spell lists now support Grandmaster level for every spell, while still distinguishing between character choices and those spells which must be researched or crafted.

eq2u_spells_grandmaster

NOTE: There are approximately one dozen spells game-wide which will not be offered in Grandmaster quality. Please post here in the comments or e-mail us so we can add them to our Grandmaster exclusion list.

EQ2U Recipe Database Updated

We have also loaded nearly 5,000 new Recipes into our Recipe database, including all 3,200 new Grandmaster spell recipes. We have added the necessary stuff to alert us if any characters know a recipe which is missing from our database.

SOE-Wide Maintenance Notice: October 8, 2014

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance

From the SOE Forums:

We will perform account and commerce maintenance beginning at 6:00 AM PDT on Wednesday, October 8, 2014. We expect this maintenance to take less than two hours. Actual downtime for services should only last 15-20 minutes within this maintenance window.

This will impact the following SOE services:

  • Account management
  • Commerce functions, including purchases
  • Game, web and forum logins

Time Zone Conversions

  • PDT: October 8 @ 6:00am-8:00am
  • EDT: October 8 @ 9:00am-11:00am
  • BST: October 8 @ 14:00-16:00
  • GMT: October 8 @ 15:00-17:00
  • AEST: October 8 @ 11:00pm-1:00am

Grandmaster/Level Agnostic Patch Slips to 8th October @ 4:00BST/5:00CET (5 14 Hours Late) for EU Servers

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Game Updates & Maintenance

At 7:00am PDT (15:00 BST / 16:00 CET), players on Storms, Splitpaw, and Valor noticed that their servers had not come down for today’s update. An hour later they still had not come down and Afista provided this update when asked if EU would patch at the same time as US:

These are the correct scheduled server down times for each server. I am looking into why there was a delay and will update you all whenever I have the information.

Two hours in, Windstalker tweeted this:

@BabaGraPL @everquestii we didn’t forget. The patch is taking a longer time than we expected. Tons of stuff in this one.

and then Afista had this update:

No one forgot the EU servers. This is a very large patch and things took longer than expected.

Altar of Malice Beta is Now Open for ALL ACCESS members

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance

EQ_2_Altar_of_Malice_keyart

On/behind/ahead of/who knows schedule, the Altar of Malice beta is now up and running for ALL ACCESS members.

How Do I Get to Beta?

There is no Non-Disclosure Agreement to accept this year, and no separate Beta launcher to run. To access the Altar of Malice beta, simply close and reopen your EverQuest II Launcher, click on the Version link in the top left corner (US English for US players), switch the region to “Beta“, click Apply, and let the patching begin!

Copying characters from live to beta is really easy now. Instead of typing /beta on the live server and hoping that an hour or two from now, your character will miraculously appear on Beta, the /beta command now takes between 10 and 15 SECONDS to copy your character over.

After the jump, a detailed pictoral of how to do these steps, and some useful time-saving info…

Update Notes: Tuesday, October 7, 2014 — Level Agnostic Dungeons, Grandmaster Spells

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Game Updates & Maintenance, Grouping, Itemization, Raiding, Tradeskill

UPDATE from Afista on the EQ2 Forums:

These are the correct scheduled server down times for each server. I am looking into why there was a delay and will update you all whenever I have the information.

ALL servers are supposed to be patching at the same time. Here’s the announcement from the EQ2 Forums:

All US EverQuest II Live Servers will be brought offline on Tuesday, October 7, 2014 at 7:00 AM PDT. Estimated downtime is 1 hour.

All EU EverQuest II Live Servers will be brought offline on Tuesday, October, 2014 at 7:00 AM PDT. (3:00 PM London Time). Estimated downtime is 2 hours.

From buildmaster Bunji on the EQ2 Forums:

LEVEL AGNOSTIC DUNGEONS

  • These dungeons allow players, level 20-89, to group together without the need for mentoring and have both a challenging and rewarding experience.
    • Charasis: Maiden’s Chamber
    • Library of Erudin
    • Nejena’s Deep Forge
    • Vasty Deep: The Conservatory
    • Templeof the Faceless
  • You can enter an agnostic dungeon by queuing through Dungeon Finder or by using the agnostic dungeon entrances found near the arena entrances inFreeportand Qeynos.

MASTERS

  • Grandmaster spells are now available from crafting or via the spell upgrade (Research) tab in your Knowledge Book.
  • Free players can now scribe and research spells up to the Master level.

Level Agnostic Dungeons, Grandmaster Spellpocalypse Delayed til Tuesday Oct 7

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Game Updates & Maintenance, Itemization

And here we were making sure that EQ2U was ready for Grandmasters tomorrow… From Holly “Windstalker” Longdale‘s twitter:

First Five Level-Agnostic Dungeons, Grandmaster Spells Coming Thursday Oct 2nd!

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Game Updates & Maintenance, Grouping, Itemization

The first five level-agnostic dungeons, open to level 20-89 players, as well as the availability of Grandmaster spells at all levels and tiers, is expected this Thursday. Racheal “Afista has posted an in-depth preview of what we can expect on the EQ2 Forums:

We’re excited about Level Agnostic Dungeons and Grandmaster Spells coming to EverQuest 2 on Thursday, October 2, 2014! So what exactly are these dungeons and why should you check them out?

Level Agnostic Dungeons

Level Agnostic Dungeons are instances in which characters between levels 20-89 have a chance to group together, regardless of the difference in their adventure level. These dungeons are accessible by joining the queue on your Dungeon Finder Tab (Alt + Z) from the EQ2 Options Menu. Within each dungeon, adventurers will be able to battle heroic monsters and receive individual rewards based on their own level. This is a chance to earn great XP and enjoy a new spin on some classic dungeons!

New “Character Memories” Feature Slips to Live

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Game Updates & Maintenance

Over the last couple of days, players have noticed their game client taking screenshots of certain Achievements and other in-game activities. It looks like this was an in-development feature which slipped to live a bit prematurely. From Dave “Maevianiu” Kish on the EQ2 Forums:

Oh snap! This one is my fault. It got “pulled along for the ride” with the performance increases. It wasn’t ready for live and I’m personally sorry for this one.

This feature isn’t finished yet, so I’ll be turning it off with the next hotfix. I am very sorry for it sneaking out like this, again it was my mistake.

The idea was that your character would have memories, they could be the first time they defeated an epic monster, completed an achievement, did an epic quest, etc. And there would be an option to turn it off. Its going to take a hotfix to fix this one so please bear with me on it for a bit.

and:

As a bit of an Easter Egg you guys can manually make this happen with the command /cl_screenshot_character_memory FileName

That will create a file named “FileName.jpg” with the screenshot in it. That will continue to work after the hotfix. The automatic doing of it will stop after the hotfix. And the hotfix is planned for Thursday, not set in stone, but targeting Thursday.

I know I still have the screenshots of getting my Epic Weapons on my various characters, and I think people will use this as a scrapbook feature, especially if they can add some things in line a headline text with your character name and what achievement or event triggered the screenshot.

SOE Maintenance Notice: September 25, 2014

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance

From the EQ2 Forums:

Attention players: we will perform maintenance beginning at 7:00 AM PDT* on Thursday, September 25, 2014. We expect this maintenance to last about two hours. This will impact the following SOE services:

  • Game servers may sporadically lose connection across all games
  • Commerce functions, including purchases for all games
  • Game, web and forum logins for all games

Thank you for your patience as we complete this maintenance.

Time Zone Conversions

  • PDT: September 25 @ 7:00am ~ 9:00am
  • EDT: September 25 @ 9:00am ~ 11:00am
  • BST: September 25 @ 15:00 ~ 17:00
  • CET: September 25 @ 18:00 ~ 19:00
  • AEST: September 26 @ 12:01am ~ 2:00am

EQ2 Performance Boost Verdict, Adornment Cannot be Located, ACT

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Game Updates & Maintenance

Performance

This Tuesday’s update to EQ2 included quite a few tweaks to the EQ2 game client which have produced a substantial upgrade in framerates and overall performance for many players including myself. I have to give a round of applause to Dave “Maevianiu” Kish and others on the EQ2 code side who have worked the last few months to get these changes done. I was personally able to bump up one quality setting and my framerate still increased from 20′s to a steady 45-50. So…

orson_welles_clapping

There are a few players who have been hung up on these changes though. Any time you make core changes to a 10 year old game, there is a chance that problems will be found. It’s not an issue of higher or lower end video cards as I have a rather low spec video card (GT240), but nonetheless players have reported crashing before being able to login to the game. For now, I would try reinstalling the DirectX 9 runtime, and if that does not work, open a ticket at http://help.soe.com/.

“Adornment Cannot be Located”

Another change that went in on Tuesday is a new Adornment assignment window. Now when you right-click “use” on an Adornment, you are presented with a window that lists the items which will accept that adornment. I personally don’t find the window that helpful as it does not identify which items already have full adornment slots, so it could be possible to accidentally replace a useful adornment with a less useful one.

Anyway the issue here is that this change seems to conflict with the popular DrumsUI UI addon.

Update Notes: Tuesday, September 23, 2014 — Performance Tweaks and Bug Stomp!

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Game Updates & Maintenance, Grouping, Itemization, Raiding, Tradeskill

From the EQ2 Forums:

PERFORMANCE UPDATES
We don’t want to get into too much detail, but overall we updated some very old libraries to bring EQII up to date. We also updated memory management, fixed some memory leaks as a result, and made some other code changes that look to be improving server performance.

Here’re a few notes to give you a bit more detail:

  • Improved client performance on maximum settings. Additionally, altered the “Extreme Quality” defaults to look and run better on higher end machines. This means that non-raiders who do quests, decorate houses, heroic dungeons (without oceans of proc gear), are going to notice considerable improvement.
  • We have made several improvements to spawning of items and NPCs to make this less of a load on the server.
  • We have made some optimizations to how data is sent from the server to the client.
  • Optimized some server side AA calculations.
  • Several Marketplace improvements on performance and improved how the welcome window is sent to clients.
  • Made improvements to how the server calculates stats during combat.
  • Made improvements to client for performance.
  • Utilized SSE and SSE2 instruction sets to improve graphical performance.

Things that are NOT specifically improved:

  • Client performance on lowest settings, it is already stripped down to the bare minimum.
  • Clients who are using custom UIs, specifically ones using UI script.
  • Raid performance still needs some attention, specifically stacking procs and double casts. We’re still looking into solutions.

Performance Update: September 23, 2014

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Game Updates & Maintenance

From Racheal “Afista” on the EQ2 Forums:

We are excited to announce that the game update on September 23rd will include code updates to improve performance on servers as well as player clients! What does this round of updates hold in store for you? These changes will help game performance, whether you enjoy adventuring, tradeskilling, or decorating.

Improved Graphical Performance

  • Improved client performance on maximum settings, including “Extreme Quality”
  • Utilized SSE and SSE2 instruction sets
  • Improved how the Welcome window is sent to clients

Improved Functionality

  • Improved how the server calculates stats during combat (more to come!)
  • Several improvements to Marketplace performance
  • Made client improvements, including some optimizations to how data is sent from the server to the client (more to come!)

Improved Playability

  • Several improvements to spawning of items and NPCs to make this less of a load on the server
  • Optimized some server side AA calculations for player to load/save and modify AA trees (more to come!)

eq2_performancegfx

Thank you to all of the players who helped us test these improvements on the Beta server! More improvements, including additional raid performance upgrades, are currently in the works. Beta testing for Altar of Malice begins on October 7th for All Access Members and goes into Open Beta on October 14th. We look forward to seeing you there to help us test more exciting content!

This work has been done by the EQ2 code team, led by Dave “Maevianiu” Kish.

Double XP Weekend – 19-21 September 2014

Written by Dethdlr on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance

bonus_xp_banner

Holly “Windstalker” Longdale announced today on twitter:

We’re going to have a Double XP weekend for members this Friday at noon to Sunday midnight PDT! Wee!

Update: Windstalker confirmed that this is for Adventure and Tradeskill, but not Guild XP.

Time Zone Conversions

  • PDT: Friday, Sep 19 @ Noon ~ Sun, Sep 21 @ 11:59pm (+ 1 minute)
  • EDT: Friday, Sep 19 @3:00pm ~ Monday, Sep 22 @ 2:59am
  • BST: Friday, Sep 19 @20:00 ~ Monday, Sep 22 @ 7:59
  • CET: Friday, Sep 19 @21:00 ~ Monday, Sep 22 @ 8:59
  • AEST: Saturday, Sep 20 @ 5:00am ~ Monday, Sep 22 @ 4:59pm
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