Episode #77 of EQ2 Talk podcast — What Happens in Vegas

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, SOE Live (Fan Faire)

Wow has it been 3 weeks since SOE Live 2014? I’m hopelessly behind on getting all my post-con stuff done, but Dellmon and Osgz have saddled up and recorded another episode of the best (wait, isn’t it the only?) EQ2 podcast!

From EQ2Talk:

Episode #77 – What Happens in Vegas
recorded on Aug 30

Dellmon and Osgz’s lives are finally returning to normal after SOE Live 2014. With Dell’s on the ground experiences and Oz’s perspectives via Twitch, there is much to discuss. From zombie prom to tournament play to Fippy and a schwag bag, your EQ2 Talk hosts leave no con stone unturned. As if that wasn’t enough Dellmon wraps up this episode with Tales of Flight 778, Seat 4C.

Click here to listen to Episode 77

Listen to all the shows from our website at http://eq2talk.com
Subscribe to us on iTunes here
Check us out at our Facebook page
Follow us over on Twitter too

Extra Credits – Free to Play Is Currently Broken – How High Costs Drive Players Away

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Free-to-Play (EQ2X)

If you’ve never heard of Extra Credits, it’s a semi-weekly show by game designer James Portnow and animator/narrator Daniel Floyd, with various guest artists providing the sometimes comical artwork. The series of videos discuss issues pertinent to video games and game studies, particularly discussing issues concerning video game development, addressing the legitimacy of video games as art, and creating intellectual discourse on important issues in gaming culture. We try to watch it every week, and we have a sneaking suspicion the EQNext and Landmark teams do as well, as a lot of the concepts they talk about are raised on the show.

We’ve been meaning to mention this show for a long time now. This week’s episode just happens to cover the topic “Free to Play Is Currently Broken – How High Costs Drive Players Away From Free-to-Play Games“. Most of the sins mentioned in this episode are not applicable to EQ2 — at least not anymore. Probably the biggest current examples were the $50 Bristlebane mount last year, and the $40 2-hour Group XP items.

EQ2 Insider Episode #4 – September 10, 2014

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

eq2insiderep4

EQ2Wire will be liveblogging EQ2 Insider Episode #4, which as it turns out will be Maggie "Luperza" Krohn's last episode as she has taken a position at Curse.com. You can watch EverQuest II Insider #4 at Twitch right now.

This was a live blog of today's EQ2 Insider Episode #4.

  • Talking about SOE Live and how positive and fun it was.
  • Talking about updates later this year.
  • Kander encouraging people to play Altar of Malice beta as players will earn very nice rewards on Live for their efforts on Beta.
  • Nathan (Kaitheel) will be talking today about Altar of Malice Lore.
  • They'll be talking about Level Agnostic Dungeons today.
  • Grandmasters.
  • Nights of the Dead.
  • Kaitheel will be going over House Decorating Dev Picks.

Watch the EverQuest II Q&A #2 panel from SOE Live 2014!

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Art, Appearance, Housing, EQ2, Expansion News, Free-to-Play (EQ2X), Game Updates & Maintenance, Grouping, Itemization, PvP/Battlegrounds, Tradeskill

As long last we’ve resumed posting videos recorded from SOE Live 2014. After this, we’ve still got the EQ2 Art & Animation panel, as well as three player panels and the Player Studio panel. Oy vey!

This was the last panel at SOE Live 2014 for EverQuest II — Questions & Answers #2. Due to room acoustics, this recording took an inordinate amount of time to edit and normalize. Fortunately, Audio quality improves around the 3 minute mark when questions begin.

EverQuest II Gets New Community Manager — Ry “Roshen” Schueller

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, SOE Live (Fan Faire)

Forgive us if we have whiplash, as for the third time this year, EverQuest II has been assigned a new community manager.

From Maggie “Luperza” Krohn on the EQ2 Forums:

Norrathians,

We’ve had a short but sweet journey together. Although I’ve been a player in this community for a long time, it’s been wonderful being your Community Manager for the last few months.

I am proud of the contributions we have made together in this community, and remain inspired by the passion you all bring to the game with your feedback. We created a new web show series, EverQuest II Insider, that has provided everyone with a sneak peek into the Development Team’s side of the world, and I only foresee it growing further with the love and care of Roshen.

eq2insider-maggie-akil-kyle

Although he may be a troll at times, Roshen is a good chap, so please be kind and welcome him with open arms and /bows. He’s from a different version of Norrath, but I don’t think it’ll take him long to get familiar with our version, especially with the help of all of you wonderful people.

Feel free to keep in touch with me via Twitter or any of my other contact locations.

Thank you all for the great times and memories! I’ll miss you all!

Good hunting.

After the jump, Ry “Roshen” Schueller introduces himself on the EQ2 Forums

Update Notes: Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Art, Appearance, Housing, EQ2, Game Updates & Maintenance, PvP/Battlegrounds, Raiding

From the EQ2 Forums:

WEEKLY FEATURE

  • Balance of Theer [PvP] battleground! A 6v6 deathmatch zone that is set on Roehn Theer’s platform.

GENERAL

  • Options to invite a guild member to a party, a raid, or gossip with them via tells about that healer that keeps forgetting to cure detrimentals are now available via the context menu in the Members list of the Guild window.
  • Resolved an issue where certain wards did not properly display the amount of damage warded in the effects list of their description tooltips and examine windows.

POPULATION / ZONE PROGRESSION
The Fabled Deathtoll

  • Several minor changes were made to Cruor Alluvium to prevent unexpected damage from the gazer’s damage shield immediately after being teleported by Watery Grave.

The Top 10 PlayerStudio Items in EQ2 for August 2014

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Player Studio

playerstudio2014

There was a time when SOE kept this kind of information under their hats, but for the last six months, the Player Studio folks have been posting top 10 lists of the most popular items purchased in the EverQuest II Marketplace.

What I like about Player Studio is, players get to design things and see them added to their favorite game, while other players get to give feedback to those players and ask for which items they want next! There’s a forum just for Player Studio designers to collaborate and help each other to solve problems and get items up to the standard desired by each game’s Art Director. Player Studio is a complete microcosm of design delivery and it benefits both SOE and the designer. As we found out at SOE Live this year, some players have made upwards of $10,000 in just one year!

From the Player Studio forums:

These were the highest-grossing items for August 2014:

1. Papa Giuseppe’s Iced Delights Cog Café
2. [eq2u]Decorated Wooden Shingled Roof[/eq2u]
3. [eq2u]Temple Street F.M.[/eq2u]
4. Cloak of the [eq2u]Serpent’s Fang[/eq2u]
5. [eq2u]Papa Guiseppe’s Iced Delights Cog Cafe Expresso Counter[/eq2u]
6. Bundle of Birds
7. [eq2u]Assassin’s Cane[/eq2u]
8. [eq2u]Cloak of the Dragonslayer[/eq2u]
9. Neriak Door ([eq2u]Stained Glass Neriak Estates Door[/eq2u])
10. [eq2u]Lions Head Pub Bundle[/eq2u]

EQ2 Producer Letter: What’s to Come for Sept to Nov!

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Art, Appearance, Housing, EQ2, Expansion News, Game Updates & Maintenance, Grouping, Itemization, PvP/Battlegrounds, Raiding, Tradeskill

EQ_2_Altar_of_Malice_keyart

From Holly “Windstalker” Longdale on the EQ2 Forums:

Greetings Norrathians,

We’re all charged up and busy after a great time at SOE Live! The team is hunkered down and focused on the expansion, fixes, and updates on the schedule. Here are some details!

When is the EverQuest II: Altar of Malice Beta?

On Oct. 7 we will launch Limited Beta for All Access members. Most of the content will be focused on the Overlands and level increase content. We need your support!

Oct. 14 will be Open Beta for everyone. We’d love you to come check out the content and help us make sure it’s good, clean fun.

When is Altar of Malice Launch?

The expansion launch for All Access members will be on Nov. 11, just a few days after we celebrate our 10th anniversary!

On Nov. 25, the expansion will be available to everyone.

Everyone Enjoy Double Status This Weekend — Sep 5~7

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Live Events

double_status_2014-09-04

From the EQ2 Forums:

EVERYONE can enjoy double status this weekend from Friday, September 5th, 2014 at 12:00 PM Noon PDT, until Sunday, September 7th, 2014 at 11:59 PM PDT!

Don’t forget to send us screenshots of your adventures on the forumsFacebookTwitter and Google Plus!

*This event doubles the base status earned by defeating encounters, or rewarded from quests. Guild status is rewarded from that base amount, so yes it is in effect doubled.

Grandmasters Won’t Require Raiding, Exorbitant Research

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

ancient_tome

I think these days, most players don’t consider their characters complete, competitive, or at least capable until they have upgraded a significant number of their combat arts or spells to Master level. It was not always so…

Are We Entitled to Masters?

It may be hard to remember, but there was a time before the Research tab and before Research Assistants when the only way to get Master spells was to defeat enemies. At launch, Masters were unbelievably rare and only dropped from Epic names. Over the years, they have trickled down to Epic trash, then to Heroic bosses. At some point, a global loot table was added to any slain non-trivial enemy with something like a 1 in 10,000 chance to drop a level-appropriate Master. Every year, Masters seem to become more widely available.

Update Notes: Wednesday, September 3, 2014

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

Time for our Tuesday Wednesday update notes from the EQ2 Forums. If you were following EQ2Wire, you already filled every slot of your bank with 2 copper shinies to sell for status. For everyone else — this is why you can’t find cheap shinies on the broker…

WEEKLY FEATURE

  • Collection items and adornments now sell for status to specific status merchants!

POPULATION / ZONE PROGRESSION
Temple of Veeshan: Guardian’s Edifice

  • Members of the Aerakyn Commanders ring event have had their health lowered.

Windstalker Addresses Marketplace Price Tweaks

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, StationCash

Holly “Windstalker” Longdale has stepped up and taken a bullet for Finance with these posts on the EQ2 Forums:

Just so there’s no confusion or suggestion there’s a bug, a few prices have changed on SC items. Very few. About 6 items. We felt that doing that at the same time as the sale might be helpful for members, at least, who choose to purchase those few items.

This week prices that changed are on purchases that you can obtain or use in-game in other ways (like merc slots and revive). As a few people have pointed out, we make adjustments like functioning businesses do. We’ll continue to make adjustments as we go forward which will include reducing prices too (one item this week was slightly reduced).

Overall, please be sure you’re happy with the price before you confirm your purchase. We want you to be happy about what you choose to buy and we are grateful when you do! We aren’t out to trick anyone. I promise you that!

and:

Oh, and on the bonus XP days, weekends, etc. There are going to be plenty of them coming over time. As you have said here, we did Double XP last weekend through to Monday. We’ll be doing it again before too long. Same with Status XP days, weekends, etc.

We like to give you plenty of stuff to look forward to and fun benefits. Next weekend we’ll be doing a Status Bonus weekend, for example, that will include F2P members.

Merc Unlocks, Item Unattuners Jump 50%, Spell Research Up 145% Before Labor Day

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, StationCash

scary_money

UPDATE: EQ2 Producer Holly “Windstalker” Longdale has addressed today’s price increases on six (out of over 2,700) Marketplace items here.


Original op-ed follows:

It is no secret that EverQuest II, EverQuest, DC Universe Online, and PlanetSide 2 are funding the freewheeling development costs of EverQuest Next and Landmark. Existing properties funding future development is standard procedure in the video game industry. It’s also no secret that the current incarnation of EverQuest Next is actually SOE’s fourth attempt to launch the product, with nearly 5 years of development effort being left by the wayside.

What is a surprise is that, despite the elimination of Double and Triple StationCash promotions last summer, and despite the wildly successful Landmark Trailblazer presale which sold thousands of copies at $100 a pop, it apparently may not have been enough.

I like what the EverQuest II team has been doing the past couple of years (ok those mystery crates are way too stingy! but seriously…). They’ve been communicating with us more than they have in years. They’ve been open and honest with us at SOE Live and on EQ2 Insider about what features are likely, doable, wishlist, or “bucket of awesome” items so our expectations can be set. The EQ2 team have embraced the two focused feedback forums – Area 51 and the Raid Council – /bug (Yes they read it!), and forum private messaging, allowing players of all gameplay styles to reach the game’s developers and designers and be heard. The EQ2 team no longer spring changes on us and hope we won’t notice. In my opinion, it’s a good time to be an EQ2 player.

So it’s frustrating for me to see someone higher up pull the rug out on a Friday night, dial up prices on a few popular Marketplace items, and then leave the EQ2 team holding the bag. In reality, it’s just a few items. So far we’ve only found 50% increases on [eq2u]Item Unattuner Bundle[/eq2u] and Mercenary Unlocks, and a 145% increase on Spell/CA Research Assistants. What concerns me is the way this was done. I suppose it’s possible that the timing of this was purely coincidental and unintentional, but for this to fall just hours into a sale, on Labor Day Weekend, is highly suspect.

Why am I so certain that this didn’t come from the EQ2 team? They’ve earned my trust.

SC Marketplace is 25% Off for All Access This Weekend

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, StationCash

From the EQ2 Forums:

This weekend, SOE will be officially wrapping up summer with some great savings for All Access members!

all_access

All Access membership offers great value like in-game perks, a claimable monthly 500 SC reward, and 10% off in-game Marketplace items. But this weekend, we’re going to crank the Marketplace discount from 10% to 25% off!

From Friday, August 29th at 10AM PDT to Tuesday, Sept. 2nd at 10AM PDT, members will get a 25% discount on in-game Marketplace purchases*!

The discount is only available in Marketplaces for games currently part of the All Access program. Excludes Landmark and Dragon’s Prophet as they are not yet included in All Access membership.

Want to browse the EQ2 StationCash Marketplace? You can do so right now on EQ2U!

Update Notes: Thursday, August 28, 2014

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

From the EQ2 Forums:

ITEMS

  • [eq2u]Cozen Ethereal Hood[/eq2u] and [eq2u]Cozen Ethereal Shroud[/eq2u] are now lore.
  • Corrected an issue that was preventing some players from consuming their [eq2u]Cozen Hood[/eq2u] patterns.
  • Subversive Acts will now persist through death.
  • Weapons obtained within The Fabled Deathtoll henceforth will be more amazing than weapons obtained previously within The Fabled Deathtoll.

and an important update about the Cozen hoods from Gninja:

This effect is intended to not stack with the steward’s cloak. It is a replacement for the cloak so you do not have to equip it any longer. We have no plans to make them stack.

EQ2Wire is Giving Away Five GuildLaunch Prime Subscriptions

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2

guildlaunch

Recently, EQ2Wire was contacted by the folks at GuildLaunch, a guild hosting platform with over 3.5 million registered players on over 500 supported games including EverQuest II. GuildLaunch offers free guild hosting, while its subscription plans grant full site customization and theming, advanced DKP, attendance tracking, and much more. You can see their feature comparison guide on their site.

guildlaunch_examples

The Contest!

GuildLaunch were nice enough to give us five promo codes to give away which are good for 1 year of GuildLaunch Prime subscription (normally $7/mo or $84/yr). We’re going to hook up 5 guilds with pretty much everything they will need to manage their guild’s website with the exception of voice servers.

If you or your guild leader would like to enter your guild for a chance to win one of these codes, please e-mail us at GLContest (at) EQ2Wire.com with the name of your character, guild, and server where your guild is based, as well as 1-2 sentences (max 500 chars) on why your guild would benefit from having a GuildLaunch site. Please note that we will only consider one entry per guild (we will choose the best representative entry at our discretion so that smaller guilds are on a level playing field).

All entries must be received by September 15th. Winners will be announced September 22nd. This contest is open to all EQ2 players. Winners will receive the code via the email used to submit their contest entry.

NOTE: EQ2Wire has offered their assistance to the GuildLaunch folks to get support for EQ2 Census added as, at least for now, characters must be individually added to your GuildLaunch Roster. This has not stopped numerous guilds from using the service though!

EQ2 Devs Invite Players to Beta For Performance Testing, Level Agnostic Dungeons

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

beta_invite

EQ2 Programmer Maevianiu has been working over the last few months on some significant performance tweaks to the EQ2 client and server, including at least one change that touched 10 year old code. As a part-time semi-amateur coder, that scares me deeply. So I’m gonna say it’s uberimportant that players login to Beta and test everything out to make sure these changes don’t impact any existing systems. It won’t just be a testing session though as it looks like there’s going to be quite a turnout of EQ2 devs on the Beta server today!

From Maevianiu:

We have our first round of performance increases on Beta right now. There are more coming, but this first round we want to do some load testing and get it out to live as quickly as we can. This affects every aspect of the game: quests, tradeskilling, items, combat, pvp-combat even housing. So we need to test as many different things as possible.

Please join us on the Beta server, Wednesday, August 27th starting at 3PM and going on until whenever!

Gninja is promising Punch and pie!

EQ2 ZAM: Transcripts of both EQ2 Q&A panels & Mechanics from SOE Live 2014

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Art, Appearance, Housing, EQ2, Expansion News, Game Updates & Maintenance, Grouping, Itemization, PvP/Battlegrounds, Raiding, SOE Live (Fan Faire), Tradeskill

Because sleep is overrated, EQ2 fan Afista spent the weekend meticulously transcribing the two EverQuest II Q&A panels and has posted them on EQ2 ZAM. Also don’t miss the notes from the all-important Mechanics panel posted by Cyliena as linked below. I got a kick out of hanging out with both of them at SOE Live and seeing what they’re doing for the EQ2 community. I’m starting to feel like a bit of a slacker now… ;)

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At SOE Live 2014, the community had questions and the devs had answers! ZAM was there to keep track of what everyone wanted to know. Afista has written a full recap of what happened during the Q&A following the EQ2 keynote, as well as the AMAA Sessions Part 1 & Part 2.

(also check out our Systems & Mechanics panel recap from last week!)

Update Notes: Tuesday, August 26, 2014

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

From the EQ2 Forums:

WEEKLY FEATURE

  • Vesspyr Isles: Pinch Aggregate, the Rare Item Procurer, now offers wares in a secluded location.

QUESTS

  • Fixed a bug where the Shinies Beneath the Moonlight automatically awarded even if someone didn’t complete the proper collections.
  • Blaisy Bookmaker and Unlucky in High Keep Contested, and Dawper in the Fabled Sanctum of the Scaleborn will no longer temporarily disappear after you’ve completed Dawper’s mission, “Blasted Droags!”

ITEMS

  • One player cannot trigger both Practiced Tactics and Practiced Tactics II. The effects will stack when applied from multiple casters. [Fixed on 5/16/2014]
  • Players may now obtain over 10,000 Draconic Etyma now. Currency caps on all other currencies are unchanged.
  • The “Customize” option will now correctly appear for House Actors inside a player dungeon.

ABILITIES / ALTERNATE ADVANCEMENT

  • Priests now will be granted Gather Remains at level 80. This spell can be used to pull the corpses of raid members to the priest’s location while out of combat.
  • The maximum health impairments caused by Rejection, Change of Engagement and Debilitating Strikes no longer stack from multiple casters.

Watch the EverQuest II: Mechanics Panel from SOE Live 2014!

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Expansion News, Game Updates & Maintenance, Grouping, Itemization, PvP/Battlegrounds, Raiding, SOE Live (Fan Faire), Tradeskill

In the EverQuest II: Systems panel, the EverQuest II team talks about the upcoming expansion, specifically class balance, mechanics, some new features, and takes player questions. On the panel: Akil “Lyndro” Hooper, Kyle “Kander” Vallee, Michael “Xelgad” Ganz, Robert “Caith” Fouts, Dave “Maevianiu” Kish, Douglas “Endymion” VanDerveer, and Justin “Jamiss” Michael. We recorded this at SOE Live 2014 in Las Vegas and are happy to be able to share it.

On YouTube:

DDoS Crew Makes it Personal, Calls in Bomb Threat on SOE President John Smedley’s Flight

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Game Updates & Maintenance

monopoly-go-to-jail2

File this under “WTF?”

The script kiddies who have been DDoSing Blizzard, League of Legends, PlayStation Network, and Sony Online Entertainment since early this morning decided to double down on their slew of felonies by tweeting a bomb threat for the American Airlines flight carrying SOE President John Smedley to San Diego. The flight was subsequently rerouted to Phoenix, AZ. The details of this “If I didn’t read it, I wouldn’t believe it” nonsense comes to us via Polygon:

SOE Impacted by DDOS because Mean People Suck

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

network-connections

So because there are people in this world with nothing better to do than engage in DDoS attacks on Blizzard, League of Legends, PlayStation Network, and Sony Online Entertainment, players are having difficulty connecting to or playing these games this morning.

UPDATE -- Bonus XP Extended til Tuesday:

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