EQ2Wire Prowler Contest

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Commentary, Daybreak Cash

The Contest

A trainer of mounted cats recently lost his head about the prospects of limitless wealth and ice (for iced tea naturally) in New Halas and so packed up overnight, leaving behind a manor full of trained battle cats — and no forwarding address.

We have managed to procure five of these highly prized felines and now need to find homes for them.

It has been difficult, but we have decided on selection criteria. Those players who reply to this posting with the name they intend to give to their cat will be entered into a drawing. Five names will be chosen at random to receive their very own Prowler mount of their choice.

This is the same Prowler mount which recently became available on the StationCash Marketplace.

WINNERS ANNOUNCED!!

The winners of this contest were announced on June 4th!!

   

SF Retail Box Highland Stalker Tweaks?

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Commentary, Daybreak Cash

The big news yesterday about the new Prowler mounts available via StationCash in the Marketplace is being discussed in the First Ever Mount on the Marketplace thread on the EQ2 Forums.

But as part of the introduction of these SC mounts, the Highland Stalker mount which was included in the Sentinel’s Fate CE retail box has gotten some tweaks as well.

  • First, the run animation created for the SC Prowler has been adapted to the Highland Stalker.
  • Second, the gigantic, and I mean Sir Mix-a-lot sized rump on the Highland Stalker has undergone plastic surgery.

Some players find the new animation smoother, others find it more jarring. Go figure!

About That Featherfall

Marketing apparently unintentionally embellished one characteristic of the SC Prowler mounts. They do not, in fact, have Featherfall.

And I promise I won’t use the words apparently, unintentionally, and embellished all in 1 sentence ever again. Well, after that last one. Promise.

EQ2 Senior Producer Responds to Feedback, SC Mounts

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Commentary, Daybreak Cash, Expansion News, Game Updates & Maintenance

Previous EQ2 Senior Producers Alan “Brenlo” Crosby and Bruce Ferguson rarely responded directly to player inquiries. Thus we featured their posts here on EQ2Wire in separate posts.

However Dave “SmokeJumper” Georgeson has been tearing up the EQ2 Forums in two threads:

Double StationCash Weekend April 2-4

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Daybreak Cash

From ZAM:

Astute ZAM user MarisolBluesurf spotted this spash screen in Free Realms, annoucing a double Station Cash weekend!

The promotional period is April 2, 2010 (after 4pm Pacific Time) through April 4, 2010 (before 11pm Pacific Time).  Only retail card redemptions will receive double Station Cash.  It doesn’t matter when you purchased the retail cards, only that you redeem them during the promotional period.

While this is a Free Realms promotion, anyone with a Station account can redeem retail cards for double Station Cash during the promotional period.  Once successfully redeemed, the cardholder’s wallet balance will reflect the new pre-paid Station Cash balance plus a bonus of 100% of the card’s Station Cash value which can be used anytime. Station Cash can be redeemed in EverQuest®, EverQuest® II and Free Realms™ in-game marketplaces.

For a list of retailers and instructions on redeeming your Station Cash cards, see this post on the EQII forums.

Station Cash Holiday Double Up!

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Daybreak Cash

SOE is bringing back Double Station Cash for nearly two weeks just in time for Christmas.

Starting December 23, 2009 and lasting through January 3, 2010, redeem any StationCash card for double credit. Cards may be purchased anytime in advance, but must be redeemed successfully during the promotional period in order to receive the bonus.  These are currently branded as FreeRealms Station Cash cards but are applicable to all SOE games. Points can be redeemed at FreeRealms.com or the Station website.

Starter and Month Subscription cards do not count.

Press Release at EQ2 ZAM

25% StationCash Bonus Week

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Daybreak Cash

On the fence about that Race Change Potion? Thinking twice about changing your Name? Contemplating a Server Transfer? If these questions, or the thought of grabbing some furniture or clothing while nobody’s looking, has occurred to you, here’s some news you might use.

Next week — November 23 ~ November 29 – all StationCash cards will redeem with a 25% bonus. So for $10, you get 1250 StationCash, instead of 1000SC. In short, a Race Change potion should work out to $20 instead of $25 if you redeem the points during next week.

Now, just like last time, these cards prominently feature the FreeRealms logo and FreeRealms mascot. But as long as it says StationCash on it, and not “Game Time” or “Game Subscription” on it, that’s the ones you want to buy.  On the back, it says to redeem at FreeRealms.com, but you can also redeem at Station.com. Wherever you redeem it, it all goes to the same place.

stationcash_freerealms_card
(photo courtesy Calthine of EQ2 ZAM)

Check out the 25% StationCash Announcement at EQ2Forums

The StationCash Euro Disparity

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Daybreak Cash

If you live in the U.S. and play EQ2 (or FreeRealms), then even if you’ve never purchased any, you know that 1,000 SC costs $10. Furthermore, there was a promotion a few weeks back where you could redeem retail-purchased StationCash cards for double credit. 1,000 SC were just $5 for a weekend.

So you may be surprised to learn that in Europe 1,000 SC costs $17.63. That’s 10 Euro for 1,000 SC plus 17.5% VAT (VAT should be 15%). I mean exchange rates are a pain, but the U.S. Dollar has been weak for over 2 years now. Remember when the Canadian dollar was maybe 60 cents on the U.S. Dollar? Now they’re almost equal. For a few months, Canadian was more valuable.

To get around this problem, it used to be possible to pay in U.S. Dollars using a Visa or other payment technique, but SoE added an additional check to require Euro depending upon your address. What a completely unnecessary change!

If you live in Europe, or want to commiserate, you may want to check out this thread.

Double StationCash

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Art, Appearance, Housing, Daybreak Cash

If you meet these criteria:

  • Live in the U.S.
  • Have access to a big-box store or games store.
  • Desire some item or items on StationCash.

then you may be interested in the retail-only “Double StationCash” deal cooked up by the EQ2 Marketing Department.

Head to Wally World, Buy More, etc. and look not for the 30 day EQ2 cards, but the FreeRealms-branded 500, 1000, or more SC cards. If you redeem them this weekend, you will get double credit. You can then spend those points at any time.

More Details at EQ2 Forums (and for a snapshot of what these FreeRealms SC cards look like — thanks Calthine)

There are always new appearance and furniture items being added to StationCash. This week if you are feeling particularly down in the dumps, you may feel that having a black cloud follow you around matches your mood:

sc_blackcloud

Details at EQ2Players

More Game Update 53 Notes

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Art, Appearance, Housing, Daybreak Cash, DGC Wants Feedback, Game Updates & Maintenance, Grouping, Itemization

While we wait the last 1 1/2 hours for the EQ2 servers to come back up, I thought some of you might like to check out a few more tidbits expected to come in Game Update 53 at the end of the month. I’ve focused on new features here. If you want, you can read the full EQ2 Test Update Notes courtesy of EQ2 ZAM.

GENERAL

  • Runic Deflection should proc slightly more reliably.
  • House layout files now properly save the scaling of an object.
  • The save_layout and load_layout commands now properly save and load positions of NPC amenities.

ACHIEVEMENTS

  • New crafting Achievements have been added.
  • Certain Achievements have had rewards added to them.
  • The Antonican Adventurer Achievement should now be able to be completed. The Achievement has been reset.
  • The Lavastorm Nomad achievement has been reset to allow completion.
  • Some Slayer quests will no longer be added back to your player after converting them to Achievements.
  • The guild event for members earning achievements will now show up in the event list.
  • Achievements can now be expanded even if they are completed.
  • Achievements that give rewards will now display the reward when expanded.  The rewards can be clicked to open an examine window or control-clicked to view in the dressing room window.
  • The Commonlands Colonist and Ykeshan Trekker achievements have been reset to allow completion.

CHRONOMAGIC

  • The Chronomagi Taskers (quest givers to complete older Norrath content) have moved to be near the Timeless Chronomages [article at EQ2 Zam] (causing them to change zones from Qeynos South -> Harbor and from Freeport North -> East. In Gorowyn and Kelethin, they simply moved)
  • When mentoring or chronolocking scaled down item bonuses will now be applied correctly.

ITEMS

  • Rare drops from Tradeskill instances (Deadly Mixing Spoon, etc.) have been flagged as LORE-EQUIP ATTUNEABLE HEIRLOOM.
  • A large number of the Station Cash and Legends of Norrath items are now HEIRLOOM.
  • House items placed in moving crates will now stay in those moving crates, even when you are not looking!

USER INTERFACE

  • Tooltips for Books inside of packing crates will now look correct.
  • The Threat window now resizes properly.
  • The Welcome Screen now displays the name and zone of the Daily Double mission.
  • Hotbar windows no longer have as much empty spacing around them making it easier to stack them close without overlapping.
  • There are now Save Layout and Load Layout buttons on the /house window to help make it easier to manage your house layout setups! You can save the location and size of all your house items, and restore it later (Frostfell setup anyone?)
  • The raid window has been put on a diet and is now slightly more compact.
  • The raid window progress bars are slightly larger and more readable.
  • There are now placeholder icons for the detrimental icons on the raid window.

Gu53 One Month Countdown

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

Even though we do not have a specific release date for Gu53 (Shards of Destiny), “late September” has been posited as a timeframe we should be watching for. As we approach the duly appointed time, more information is coming out about what we can expect in this update.

Unless you follow the EQ2 Dev Tracker, you’ve probably missed some salient details.

Skill Up Catch Up

Not every EQ2 player has access to a Guild Hall, specifically the Training Dummy amenity. This is relevant because at the great speed most folks now level up into their 50′s or 60′s, many players find themselves deficient in certain skills such as priest skills (Ordination), mage skills (Subjugation), scout/fighter skills (Piercing, Slashing) and want to “catch up”. So far, the only easy means to do this was to grind kill mobs or fight a training dummy.

You get better at Ranged (126/400).

According to Aeralik, this issue has been identified and in Gu53, if there is a large gulf between your skill level and the maximum, you will skill up faster. From this Dev Tracker post:

If you are really low in skill it will be much easier to level it up and the skill gains will come along much faster.  Then once you get closer in skill to your level you will then slow down to a more gradual level.

AA XP Slider

One of the features I am the most excited about in Gu53 will be the AA XP Slider. On PvE (regular) servers, we will be able to channel up to 100% of our combat XP into AA XP.  PvP servers will allow up to 50% of combat XP to be converted into AA XP (until the AA cap is reached). I intend to roll an alt and see how feasible it is to level from 20-80 entirely by grouping all while earning sufficient AA points.

I am very hopeful that this AA XP slider will encourage folks to group in the level 20-60 range again. Flying through Stormhold, Nek Castle, Runnyeye, Deathfyst Citadel, and getting a solid amount of both Alternative Achievement (AA) and levels will be a great thing. A lot of folks out there are soloing to 80 and have no clue what their character brings to a group/raid.

Once again Aeralik chimes in on the EQ2 Forums with the facts:

The aa slider enables at level 10.  Pve players can put all adv xp into aa if they want but pvp players will be limited to 50% while below the current maximum level.

The AA cap only applies on pvp servers and works to keep players relatively close in strength.  We don’t have any plans to adjust this cap because its just a spending cap and you can still earn additional AA levels while capped.

Racial Traits

When racial traits were added after the launch of EQ2, players were surprised at just how good some of the effects were. Specifically, erudites are clearly superior spellcasters, while ogres are the obvious choice for tanks due to their health buffs.

With the upcoming Racial Respec tokens we will be able to purchase with StationCash,  and with certain racial traits being such obviously good choices, there is a concern that all wizards will change to Erudite, all predators to Dark Elves, all tanks to Ogre, etc. As a result, we can expect racial traits to be rebalanced and reshuffled in Game Update #53.

Here are Aeralik‘s comments on the EQ2 Forums:

The racial trait changes are staying largely in line with how they have always really been oriented.  Fighter races get some nice fighter bonuses,, caster races get caster bonuses, etc.  This really goes back to the base race design.  The original stats favored certain archetypes for play and usually their racial packages complemented these using effects of the time.  The previous racial update made things a bit more specific with current effect packages but we tried to make each race a bit more unique.

This next race update tries to mix them together so you have a wider variety of choices but the race’s abilities come from common pools.  So if you picked a mage oriented race and play a mage you get some nice choices but nothing really amazing.  If you went off the normal path and chose something like an ogre mage you still get a lot of benefits to yourself but overall dps differences from a mage race will be minimal at best and easily overcome.  In fact the ogre mage is probably a really good choice for a number of playstyles because the fighter package is really nice in some aspects and the priest package shares a lot with the mage one.

Leather & Lace

And I leave you with some leather screenshots to tide you over until the next posting. Toodles!

Tier’Dal Executioner Leather Assassin appearance gear

-available today on StationCash-

Server Transfers

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Daybreak Cash

As you might be aware, EQ2 Automated Server Transfers have been down for over a year now. As a result, server transfers are something which must be done manually by a customer service rep. Server transfers have cost $50 per character, which makes it absurdly expensive to transfer all of your characters from one server to another.

Hopefully good news on this front is that the EQ2 Automated Server Transfers are coming back, but rather than through the Station Store, they will be triggered in-game through Station Marketplace (StationCash). Check out the Coming Soon thread at the EQ2 forums. Or just read these quotes requesting a definition for ‘soon’, how much it will cost, and whether server transfers were being held up for stationcash.

From Brenlo:

[Server Transfers] were not withheld to implement Marketplace.  Just fortunate timing on the work.

A few weeks is the current plan.

I am confirming pricing options.

Inevitably, comes the question of whether we’ll see Free Character Transfers, as a summer promotion, but Brenlo indicated that there were “none planned at the moment.”

Xalmat asked if EQ2Players Character Stats such as most mastered, discoveries, etc. would carry over.

Zoltaroth replied with:

The new system builds upon the old automated system, which should support transfering over your stats.  If it does not work with the new sytem, it is something that I will look into fixing.

I am sure we will post a FAQ at some point, but a few things I wanted to point out since this thread is here (keep in mind these are subject to change):

  • Transfers will be limited to monthly current subscribers only
  • Transfers will be limited to characters above level 10
  • Transfers will be limited to accounts older than 60 days

Anyone wishing to transfer who does not meet those requirements, will have to use the old manual proccess.  However, since the vast majority of transfers meet those requirements, manual transfers should become less impacted and faster as well.

We’ll have more info as it comes down the pike. Hopefully one of the options is to move all characters on the account to another server.

   

You Might Want to be Sitting Down

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Daybreak Cash

EQ2 has added some of the most attractive furniture yet for the game. I think many people have been hoping for a nice, “clean” set of wooden, upholstered chairs for years now and we finally got them. Not to mention an awesome looking hutch.

Unfortunately these new house/guild items are being made available at an extra cost through the StationCash system.

While I appreciate that carpenters and woodworkers have received many additional recipes in the last year (thanks Domino!), a nice set of all-purpose chairs, table, and hutch have remained elusive. Until now.

I guess if you’ve gotta have them, you’ll produce your credit card. One can hope that craftable versions of these will be made available in a different color scheme.

sccabinet_resize scchair_crop_resize

From EQ2Players.

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