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The Void: Obelisk of Ahkzul

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Uncategorized

Let’s take a look at The Void: Obelisk of Ahkzul. Yes, it does not reward void shards, so you may have trouble getting pick-up group members excited about attending, but with the high likelihood of Ornate chests, and a bonus chest waiting for you, the rewards are still worth it. The names are of a reasonable difficulty.

You must clear the first room entirely and then Executor Vark will shove off, clearing the way to zone into the next room.

The second room, clear the possessed trolls around the pond in the middle to spawn Proto-Ravager. This room does not necessarily need to be cleared.

Port into the next room which is actually a hallway.

Kierax the Energy Wielder

Kierax the Energy Wielder seems daunting at first. Between you and your bounty, there’s a gaping chasmin the floor revealing the void. Further, if he gets ahold of even one energy orb, he will probably wipe the group. But don’t panic! He’s actually quite easy (although your tank may need dramamine before it’s over).

Your tank and another member of the party need to carefully navigate towards the center of the crevasse and leap onto the purple orb. They will start bouncing up and down. They need to grab every energy orb that appears (simply pass through it with your body) so it does not get to Kierax. If you can keep all these energy orbs away from Kierax, then he is essentially completely harmless. If you don’t see the particles, TURN UP YOUR PARTICLES! Have your ranged and caster DPS burn him down. Note it is VERY easy to slip through a crack and fall down into the Void here. If you do, it counts as a death and you are teleported back to the beginning. You DID clear all the trash, right? 🙂

Loot your 15 plats from Kierax’s Treasure chest. That should help a bit with the mounting mender bills from the zones you’ve tried so far. 🙂

Executor Vark

You saw Executor Vark busily making plans at the front of the zone, but now it’s time to end his conniving. He has a rather annoying knockback, so just tank him against the wall and healers out of range of the AoE, and he is mostly a straight burn.

Obelisk of Ahkzul also gives credit for part of The Shadow Odyssey Signature Quest, so make sure you’re on it. 🙂


Najena’s Hollow

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This zone itself is a puzzle, where you have to clear names and open pressure relief valves to unlock further parts of the dungeon. A bit like Tomb Raider or Legacy of Kain really. The zone opens with a brief cinematic showing you the whole zone before Najena’s henchmen fill it up to the brim with lava

Fitzfangle <Foreman>

Clear the trash and open the 4 steam vents (ignoring the warning that only the Foreman is permitted to open them!). Naturally, this will make Foreman Fitzfangle very unhappy with you.

Every 20-30 seconds, he will spawn 6 bombs. These do Tick, Tock, Tick, and BOOM and kill your group in about 8 seconds. You will want to have a scout or secondary tank target these bombs and burn them down and then switch back to Fitzfangle.

Take your loot and head down the lava spiral in the middle. But what’s this? A fire golem slinging molten lava chunks at you? He’s perma-rooted, so have ranged DPS and Mages stand on the spiral ramp and kill him from there. He does rain down nasty lava which moves and interrupts you

Ra’zhish <Steam Lord>

Ra’Zhish draws his power from steam. Every 30 seconds or so, he will start filling up the water reservoir. The water will start rising and he will get much more powerful, stoneskinning himself and doing massive AoE effects on the group.

The solution is to park two ranged dps (ranger, wizzy, etc.) on the steam handles and be ready to turn them whenever he emotes and you hear a warbling sound to drain the water.

You’ll want the tank, healers, and other dps parked on either the left or right side about halfway between the two valves. This way the ranged DPS can get close enough to the healer(s) to get healed, but are also close enough to the valves to be able to click them quickly. He is otherwise a straight burn.

Loot the chest and head out, opening the 4 steam vents. Head back to the lava spiral and check out your handiwork — the lava has once again been lowered.

Head down the corkscrew ramp and you’ll have another enslaved lava golem bothering you from the sidelines. Ranged burn him down and continue down. This second golem is parked in front of the bonus Void Shard chest — Najena’s Treasure. One more named to go, then you can get the key.

Jailor Ca’iluer <Master of the Flame Tempest>

The jailor will make several hasty retreats, throwing Najenaar flame constructs and magis between himself and you, but eventually he will run out of minions and have take you on himself.

The tank can peel off the fire mages and then it’s just you and the Jailer.

The Jailer’s main trick is that he will periodically summon an uncurable, unkillable fire elemental behind him. He will emote “I summon now the flames of my heritage!” when he does this. If any group members are able to stun/stifle/interrupt the jailer during the fight, this will dramatically reduce the number of times he summons this fire.

If he manages to summon a fire elemental, the whole group needs to move down the hallway away from the elemental. Otherwise the AoE damage done by the elemental will eat the group. If he summons another elemental you’ll need to move the group up the stairs back the way you came. Hopefully he only gets to spawn the elemental 2-3 times during the fight.

Head down the spiral staircase to the bottom. Kill the self-rooted golem, and then kill the sneaky goblin thief who is holding Najena’s Key to the Void Shard Chest. Climb back up the lava ramp and loot your shards!

Fortunately, the easiest Void Shard quest ends with the Jailer and getting the rock sample in the hidden tunnel between the two jail cells. If so, and you’ve got your 2 void shards, I suggest all but the strongest groups zone out and do something else with your day. 😉

Head to the next level down and clear the drakes and fire golems out of The Magma Pools.

Magmadin <Father of the Brood>

Magmadin will spawn baby drakes and randomly teleport group members into different lava pools, making this a challenging fight. Because of the individual deaths which will probably happen, power becomes a big concern, so have any summoners hand out shards, hearts, etc.

This can be a frustrating, tricky fight, as you will get constantly teleported into lava and have to figure out how to get out, and then you’ll get thrown into the drakes which will then agro all over you. Fun times!

Loot your chest and head to the bottom!

Najena, Gurg Flameeater, and Reformed Magolemus

If you were hoping for a finished, working strategy for Najena, then I’m afraid I have to disappoint you. However I can give some background which might help your group. I spoke with several groups who have done this, and it became clear to me that this boss requires a minimum amount of Area of Effect DPS and if you group does not contain a swash, warlock, conjurer, and crusader, you will not be able to burn down each wave fast enough before the next wave comes. We found no way to slow down or stop the waves before the next one came, and we were overwhelmed over a dozen times before we called it a night.

Fortunately, at least 1 void shard quest does not require killing her.

Here’s the incomplete strategy:

Najena summons three waves of Najenaar flamelords, Najenaar waterlords, Nejanaar dreadstalkers, and Najenaar darkguards. The stalkers and guards are highly resistant to mezzing.

The second wave also contains the named Gurg Flameeater, who does a massive frontal AoE. Have the tank face him to the wall so he doesn’t eat the group.

The third wave also contains the named the Reformed Magolemus. Unfortunately we did not even get to him.

This is a ring event, but it does not wait for you to clear each wave before dumping the next ever-increasing throng of mobs upon your group.

You will want to tank the initial and subsequence waves as far from Najena as possible. Most advised us to tank them around the corner up the stairs. We tried much further than back, at the bottom of the lava spiral staircase, but to no avail.

Best of luck to you!


Written by Feldon on . Posted in Uncategorized

Today’s post is all about the asterisk. Because there should be an asterisk next to the Blue Square next to Befallen: Cavern of the Afflicted. Here’s what I can determine:

Befallen: Cavern of the Afflicted is easy IF you have:

  • Shadowknight or Berzerker (with Mythical)
  • Illusionist (with Mythical)
  • Warlock (with Mythical)
  • Swashbuckler (with Mythical)
  • Inquisitor (with Mythical)
  • Dirge (with Mythical)

Sense a theme? 🙂

We tried it with Ranger, Wizard, Illy, Templar, Fury, and Shadowknight. Except for the SK, we were all single-target DPS, and it showed.

Did I mention that Befallen respawns as fast as a contested dungeon?

I knew Guk would be difficult, but I did not realize Befallen was in the same category. So that’s 13 out of 20 group zones which are off-limits to all but the best geared groups.

Fun with TSO Tradeskills

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Three of us got together today and did one of the Tradeskill Group Instances, specifically the Shipyard Cove.

The quest starts in Isle of Mara (Village of Shin) and all members must be a level 50-80 tradeskiller and have first completed the quest Ship Out in the Moors of Ykesha. There are a couple of other quests in Isle of Mara you’ll definitely want to check out too, including Rush Orders and a soloable quest that rewards a Far Seas token. Click on everything you can in the upstairs area of the Isle of Mara dock alehouse so you don’t miss anything!

The Mission

Each phase of the construction requires 3 items crafted by 9 tradeskills. There are 4 phases to the mission, so that’s a total of 108 total combines. The entire quest can be done solo, but it will take over 3 hours to complete, especially since out of those recipes, you are doing almost all of them with foreign reaction arts. It’s really best if you can get a group, as a Jeweler will have a tough time with the Forge, just like a Woodworker will stumble a bit on the Sewing Mannequin. 🙂

Once you zone into the tradeskill group instance, it takes a bit of looking around to find the materials (you don’t need to bring any materials with you), the recipe book (A smaller book), the progress book (a large book), and talk to the NPC who gives each of you the “complete 3 items” quests. It just means that one person can’t make different items at the same time — you must make 3 pulleys, turn them in, then make 3 of something else, turn them in.

It will take a bit of coordination to figure out which items each member of your party will craft. Even with a full group of 6, three of your members will be making recipes for a foreign tradeskill, so it will take a bit more effort to make the items with full durability. The reaction arts here though are completely different than you are used to! If you pull off each reaction art, they give a BIG bonus, but if you fail on a reaction art, well let’s just say you can be killed by the forge again!

I strongly advise that you have your tradeskillers do the recipes with which they are most familiar first. For instance, have a jeweler do the work bench recipe. Have a sage do the engraved desk recipe. They will be able to complete them in just a few steps with almost no chance for failure. Then focus on the tough ones — the tradeskill recipes for which you have no present members.

After four phases of crafting you get to see the fruits of your labor. In the shipyard cove, you’ll get to see the boat you created sail away. In the firemyst gully, you’ll get to see the dwarves kick some serious skeleton butt. And in the Clockwork area, you’ll get watch a bit of Battlebots. 😉

So what’s the result of all this work (and it does take a while, even with 6)?

  1. A tradeskill class-specific piece of jewelry granting a bonus to critical success chance (See the Far Seas Supply Division faction vendor in Isle of Mara to see all the possible jewelry.
  2. One of three earrings with overall harvesting skill boosts (tradesman’s/artisan’s/crafter’s)
  3. One of two wieldable tradeskill weapons
  4. Level 70-79 rare material
  5. an extra Far Seas Trading Company Token
  6. One of four recipe books (non-charged) that allows any level 70+ Artisan to craft Void Shard Armor at a slightly lower Void Shard cost.

Incoming Shield Block Nerfs

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I seem to remember commenting on the Beta forums about 3 weeks ago that an awful lot of items have Shield Block and were very desirable for tanks. Fireflyte said he would probably be reducing it on some items. Well…

Originally posted by Fireflyte:

I’m making a number of changes to the items currently available for purchase with void shards. The majority of the changes are improvements to the advanced armor sets, however I wanted to drop in a quick warning about a couple of changes that could affect the desirability of certain items:

The Shield Block effect is being removed from all tank-usable items. It’s being replaced with mitigation modifiers that equate to roughly the same % increase in damage reduction.
Shield Block is being left on the Righteous Rage jewelry set. These items, however, will no longer be available to crusaders. If you are a crusader, please do not purchase the Righteous Rage jewelry pieces, as they will be retroactively hotfixed to exclude your class.

These changes will hopefully be hotfixed early next week.

and further…

Originally posted by Fireflyte:

I created these items several months ago, and have been busy with raid gear design up until now. During this time, Aeralik has been involved in some revamping of the way tanks are being balanced, which includes bonuses to their mitigation and avoidance. In addition, I did a sweep of all the TSO items and found the Shield Block effect on far too many non-shields, to the point where players could nearly double their shield’s effectiveness. There are still a number of armor pieces with Shield Block on them, but I’ve tried to limit which slots they occupy, as well as the ease in acquiring them (void shard armor is not difficult to attain).

The mitigation bonuses I replaced the shield block with translate to nearly the exact same % increase in defense. The only difference is that you get that % added to your mitigation rather than your avoidance. Since this reduces spike damage, most players are going to find it a favorable change.

and last…

Originally posted by Fireflyte:

I could have removed the shield block here and replaced it with a mitigation bonus, but the set is actually intended for priests, and those that use Shield Ally highly prize shield block ability. I chose to leave it in and just remove crusaders from the usable classes.

Miragul’s: Scion of Ice — first look

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I’m not the first to have visited this zone. Indeed I was in beta and I did not run it, so hundreds have done it first. I guess wanted to be “surprised”. Well, I was surprised alright!

We wiped on the first trash not once but twice. We got knocked around, stunned, blurred vision, burned, frozen, and all sorts of nastiness. Agro problems were surprising considering the ballyhooed “tank balance” which was supposed to go in with TSO. Some of the positional taunts (+1 hate position) just flat out did not work properly at all.

We went in with an SK tank, but he graciously traded roles with a Mythical/Fabled Monk. We also had a Wizzy, Conjurer, Ranger (that’s me), and 78 Templar. We certainly had a tough time at first. Once we figured some things out and learned the boss strategies the hard way, it’s going to be “not bad”. A couple of mobs have serious AoEs which you have to use a trick to keep under control. Otherwise they are doing 3-6k damage all at once.

Our monk described it in one word: Brutal. Casual groups with Mastercrafted and Legendary are going to get eaten. The developers describing this zone as “Easy” confirms my fears that since most of the group zones on Beta were tested by Fabled/Mythical players, and folks who were not so well-geared typically did not get invited to groups, the difficulty level was cranked up.

The templar had a tough time keeping up with heals. A problem which will probably be resolved with gearing up and gaining 2 levels. The hard-earned Exquisite and Ornate chests yielded 2 major upgrades for our healer so we’ll be back swinging here soon enough. Probably with that healer’s main — an 80 epic Illusionist. 🙂

It was a nice touch to have the Void Shard chest about halfway through the zone, with a key on a subboss or tough trash mob. We did not finish the zone (I had to run to the airport to pickup a roommate), but we all got a shard due to this chest. It will be slower, but folks can start gearing up from these chests even if they can’t take down the main boss yet.

I have posted the strategy we hammered out under Miragul’s: Scion of Ice at Zam.

P.S. Appropriating and repurposing furniture found in dungeons is fun! 🙂

TSO for Tradeskillers

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What do Tradeskillers have to look forward to in The Shadow Odyssey expansion? Quite a lot actually!

Tradeskilling in The Shadow Odyssey

  • Starter Quest in the new Moors of Ykesha zone (77-80 adventure level, accessible from the Airship dock in the Sinking Sands).
  • New Grobb and Tupta factions in the Moors of Ykesha.
  • Far Seas Supply Division — a new faction with a ton of rewards including mounts (a white unicorn), jewelry, belts, clothing, etc.
  • A Gathering Obsession — Harvesting Signature Quest (rewards a cloak with Featherfall, etc.)

And the most exciting addition (in my opinion) are the new Tradeskill Group Instances. 1-6 tradeskillers can participate in these tradeskill instances. You pickup these quests in the Isle of Mara. You must have first done the Starter Quest in the Moors of Ykesha.

The group instances not only reward Far Seas Supply Division coins, redeemable for cool rewards, but also reward faction and special recipe books. These recipe books are invaluable if you want to help your adventuring guildmates gear up for the new The Shadow Odyssey dungeons more quickly.

The new Void Shard armor (styled after LDoN from EQ1) is sold by a vendor in the Moors of Ykesha for a certain number of Void Shards. However if you are a tradeskiller and have acquired the right recipe books from the Tradeskill Group Instances, then you can make these pieces of armor, saving your customer 1-2 shards per item. No doubt this will be an invaluable service to close-knight guilds with a mix of adventurers and tradeskillers.

The Shadow Odyssey expansion goes live Tuesday, Nov 18 at 12:00 noon PST. If you have your EQ2 Launcher set to download in the background, then you should have received approximately 750 MB of data today, reducing your patch time on Tuesday from 3-4 hours to hopefully as little as 15 minutes.

TSO Raid Zones by Difficulty

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Prepared by Calaglin (Illusionist of Confirmed on Unrest) who posts online as Pinski.
  1. First 2 named in Tomb of the Mad Crusader.
  2. First named in Palace of the Ancient One.
  3. Next 2 named in Tomb.
  4. Next 4 named in Palace.
  5. First named in Ykesha’s Inner Stronghold.
  6. Final named in Tomb.
  7. Final named in Palace.
  8. Zarrakon (in Zarrakon’s Abyssal Chamber naturally)
  9. Rest of Ykesha’s Inner Stronghold.

In response to this list, there has been some conjecture that Zarrakon is slightly easier than the final named in the Palace. Ykesha in Ykesha’s Inner Stronghold is considered to be the hardest mob in the game.

TSO Dungeons with Locations & Difficulty

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Thanks to Cyberlink for posting this on the EQ2 forums!!

The Ruins of Guk

Access: Moors of Ykesha, take the balloon from Firmroot to the Entrance of Guk.
Moors of Ykesha is the new 77-80 zone accessible by Airship in Sinking Sands, Druid Rings, Mage Spires.
  • Halls of the Fallen (Level 80)
  • The Lower Corridors (Level 80)
  • Ykesha’s Outer Stronghold (Level 80)
  • Raid: Ykesha’s Inner Stronghold

Miragul’s Phylactery

Access: Everfrost (Within the new GU47 tunnel)
  • Scion of Ice (Level 50 – 80)
  • The Anathema (Level 50 – 80)
  • The Crucible (Level 50 – 80)


Access: Lavastorm (head left after the first tunnel)
  • The Deep Forge (50~80)
  • Najena’s Hollow (50~80)


Access: Loping Plains (Somborn cemetery)
  • Evernight Abbey (70~80)
  • Mistmyr Manor (70~80)
  • Ravenscale Repository (70~80)
  • Raid: Zarrakon’s Abyssal Chamber

The Sebilisian Empire

Access: The Fens of Nathsar
  • Veksar (80) Access: under the Lake of ill Omen
  • Nu’Roga (80) Access: head right within the mines of Nurga
  • Kor’Sha (80) Access: flightpoint from Omens Call to the zone entrance


Access: Commonlands (near the Hidden Valley griffon point)
  • Cavern of the Afflicted (50~80)
  • Halls of the Forsaken (50~80)
  • Necrotic Asylum (50~80)
  • Raid: Tomb of the Mad Crusader

The Void

Access: The Moors of Ykesha, just follow the sky storms
  • Obelisk of Ahkzul (80)
  • Anchor of Bazzul (80)
  • The Palace of Ferzhul (80)
  • Raid: Palace of the Ancient One

Tradeskilling Instance Zones

  • The Clockwork Workshop (Steamfont)
  • The Shipyard Cove
  • Firemyst Gully: Supply Stocking (Antonica)

Difficulty Rating (according to Illucide — SoE Dev)
Easy to Moderate
Moderate to Hard

Advanced Void Shard Armor — Grab a Book!

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Regular Void Shard armor can be CRAFTED. Advanced Void Shard armor MUST be CRAFTED. Recipe Books drop in Tradeskill Group Dungeons.

According to information posted by Xalmat and Whilhelmina on the EQ2 Beta forum, Void Shard armor is now craftable. The Regular Void Shard armor can be created by your friendly neighborhood level 70+ crafter IF they have the recipe book from the appropriate Tradeskill Group Instances (there are 3 of these being added in TSO).

If you have a crafter make your Regular Void Shard Armor, you are getting a 1 shard discount on hand/feet/legshead slot items, and a 2 shard discount on chest/shoulder. There are a total of 4 books for regular and advanced armor, jewelry, shields, charms, etc. and other void shard items. You can save your customers 1-2 shards per item by crafting them.

Most importantly, if you want the Advanced Void Shard Armor, it appears that you must locate an level 70+ tradeskiller to make these items for you. You must also relinquish your Regular Void Shard Armor piece (and an appropriate number of void shards) to get your Advanced Void Shard Armor piece.

It should be noted that developers have said it is very easy to add void shard items, and we already know of one item — Void Shard Bears. Developers have suggested that we may see some low Fabled items on the merchants. The purpose of Advanced Void Shard Armor is to equip people for instances and get into T1 and T2 raiding.

Thanks to Xalmat and Whilhelmina for posting this information!


Originally posted by Xalmat:

Artisan (level 70+, class doesn’t matter) buys recipes, or otherwise acquires them.

You either craft (Commission) or purchase the regular armor (Void Shards are fuel)

Crafter then commissions the advanced armor (regular armor + void shards are mandatory, and yes they must be commissioned)

Originally posted by Whilhelmina:

There are currently 4 books that may drop in tradeskill group instances that are like that (with prices) :

– Book 1 : 14 shards for hands/feet, 17 shards for legs/head, 20 shards for  chest/shoulders (merchant price is 15/18/22)
– book 2 : 4 shards for each (5 on merchant)
– book 3 : 18 shards each (20 on merchant – symbols/charms/weapons are missing from the book still)
– book 4 : 1 armor piece from book1/merchant + 30 shards for hands/feet, 34 legs/head, 42 chest/shoulders

Put Your Claws Away

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Allakhazam has done a preview (including a cool video) of the Dire Bears, or so they thought.

Actually they reviewed heretofore unknown uber Void Shard Bears:

  • 65% Run Speed (if level 80 or higher)
  • EITHER: Increase Melee Weapon Range of caster by 1
  • OR: Increase Reuse Speed of Caster by 3
  • Increase Max Health of caster by 250

Not to be confused with The Shadow Odyssey Dire Bear (retail box):

  • 1-19: Summoned pet (not a mount)
  • 20-39: 20% run speed
  • 40-59: 30% run speed and armored appearance
  • 60-79: 45% run speed and increased armor appearance
  • 80: 52% run speed and increased armor appearance

Here’s the thread that clears up the confusion.

This whole situation with the Dire Bears accentuates the fact that someone is EQ2 is being hamstrung by its marketing department.

A 65% runspeed Bear with better stats can be purchased with Void Shards.

That information right there means I will not bother with the Retail box and I am completely removing that frustration from my brain. Why this information could not have been made available when the firestorm started a month ago is beyond me. Sony gets these opportunities to solve problems and they just let them fly past. Why?

Soft Caps and Hard Caps

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Here is a fantastic article written by Victer (guild: Perdition, Server: Oasis) . I’ve shamelessly borrowed it from here.

Diminishing Returns means that when you reach certain level of any skill, (mitigation, slashing, defense, etc…) you will start to get minimal benefits from raising its value.

Soft Cap: referred to as the Break Even Point, is not an actual cap, but the value at which you start seeing less return from adding more points to a given stat.

Hard Cap: The definite value at which you will no longer see a benefit from adding more points to a stat.

Stats (str/agi/sta/int/wis)
Hard Cap : [ 15 * level + 20 ] = 1220 at level 80.
Soft Cap: approx 800

Mitigation (same as resists)
Hard Cap: [ Level * 150 ] = 12000 at level 80 or 75%.
Soft Cap: approx 4400

Skills (slash/peirce/def/parry/focus/ministration and so on)
Hard Cap : [ 6.5 * Level ] = 520
Soft Cap: unknown

Hard Cap: -50% to +50% each (no soft cap)

+Spell Damage / +Combat Art Damage / +Heals
Hard Cap: 50% of damage/heal of the skill

Critical Mitigation
This has a base % dependent on your AGI.
Hard Cap: 100%.
Critical Mitigation applies to only TSO mobs.
100% Crit Mit will absorb all additional damage done from the mob criting an attack.

The level of your armor and shield compared to you makes a difference in how much mitigation% and block% you recieve from your items.

For example when you are level 80 and you wear a level 80 item with 100 mitigation, it will give you more absorbing% then a level 10 item with 100 mitigation. Same goes with the protection on shield, a level 80 shield with 1000 protection will give more block% then a lvl 20 shield with 1000.

Double Attack and Crits Hard Cap = 100% (no soft cap)

Weapon Crit Calculation: [ Crit% * 1.09 [ max – min ] + max + min ] / delay
Use /weaponstats to get the real numbers depending on your gear/current buffs.

Haste/DPS mod Hard Cap: 200 points. The 200 points equates to 125%.
Haste/DPS mod Soft Cap: approx 80 points.

Generally speaking, 40% of the hard cap is roughly the break even point on most the diminishing returns graphs for resists, stats, and skills.

Contested vs Uncontested (for skills/stats… not mobs)

Contested means that your level is compared to the mobs level to calculate the outcome of the action.

Uncontested means that it doesn’t matter what your level is compared to the mobs level. The action will take place the same % of times regardless of level.

There are only a few things that are Uncontested. These are a few that I know of.

  • Block% (+% Shield Effectivness works as a addition to Block% depending on the base protection of your shield)
  • Riposte% on items or Parry% on items (NOT +parry)
  • Generally if your item or AA has plus to a percentage of something then it is considered uncontested.

For example: A chestpeice with +1% parry is MUCH better then a chestpeice with +10 parry.

Pretty much everything else is contested against the mobs level. Thats why an orange mob is more dangerous then a yellow mob.

Void Shards — 1 per dungeon? Depends!

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From Ilucide (SoE Dev):

Some other things you may or may not know…

There’s basically a super mission that will be available once a day for a random instance that will be worth 2 shards. In addition, all dungeons will have a chest with a void shard for every member of the group… if you can find the guy carrying the key.

So each day, 1 dungeon is potentially worth 4 shards:

  • 1 shards from the regular mission
  • 2 shards from the Daily Double
  • 1 shard from the chest

Void Shards?

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There are two sets of Void Shard armor. Both are Legendary.

The lower end is an upgrade from Kunark legendary sets (instance dungeons like CoA, MC, Chel, Char, and VoES). It is much more specialized and tailors closer to the individual classes. There’s chain healer stuff, plate healer stuff, shadowknight armor, paladin armor, solo scout stuff with a bit of survivability added to it, solo fighter stuff with the same, and more specialized gear including full brawler set, full assassin/ranger set, etc.

The higher end Legendary set has stats that most will realize is essentially low Fabled. This is the gear you’ll wish you had when you started doing T2 raids in Kunark. It will take a lot of shards to get, but considering how much harder some of the instanced dungeons are in TSO, they will be a necessity for those as well as raiding.

The numbers are being fiddled with, but right now it looks like it will take about 12-14 shards to get each of your lower Legendary pieces, and then another 12-14 shards to upgrade to the upper Legendary pieces. The current theory is you have to buy the lower and trade it in to get the higher, so you aren’t really losing or wasting shards by buying one and then the other. If there was a way to buy the upper Legendary immediately, I’m sure they’ll require 24-28 shards per piece.

And did I mention there’s lots of jewelry and charms and more general purpose armor which costs a lot less shards if you are just really hurting for some good armor you can earn maybe as little as 8 shards and gear up on these items. There are a lot of choices.

There is also a lot of request on the Beta forums to allow us to earn more than one shard per run for the tougher dungeons. Some TSO dungeons are like VoES — 30 minutes with a solid group and you’re done. Others are 2 hour slogfests. It would be nice if there was a chance of getting more shards.

And keep in mind that the dungeon zones will be dropping all kinds of loot which we don’t even know about yet. Void Shards is just one option.

Suffice it to say, if you want to gear up, now is the time to pick your dance partners. Because I really intend to be grouping in 1-2 dungeons a night every night I can to gear up.

TSO Downloads Start Early

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Uncategorized

In some fantastic news, instead of the expected 4 hour download on November 18th, we will start receiving files for the new expansion over the next few weeks.

Starting this week you may notice extra files being downloaded when you patch EverQuest II from either the Launchpad or the Station Launcher.

These files are both from our upcoming expansion and from previous expansions and adventure packs. By making these files available early we hope to make November 18th and future updates a more pleasant experience for everyone logging into EverQuest II.

After November 18th we will return to our normal patching schedule.

A Bear of a Pet!

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Uncategorized

The exact details of the Dire Bear mount/pet in The Shadow Odyssey have been revealed.

  • Available as a summoned pet from 1-19, after that, becomes a mount.
  • Becomes a mount at level 20 – 20% run speed.
  • Increase in run speed at level 40 – 30% run speed and armored appearance.
  • Increase in run speed at level 60 – 45% run speed and increased armor appearance.
  • Increase in run speed at level 80 – 52% run speed and increased armor appearance.

Scaling Mounts: Called to the Carpet!

With this mechanic in place, it seems even more obvious to me that the carpet in the D.I.R.T.Y. quests in Sinking Sands should have followed the same regime. Right now, a level 10 character can do those quests and get a 35% carpet in 45 minutes of easy solo questing. That seems overpowered to me. This scaling system would have been PERFECT for the carpet. Make it a 20% carpet at level 20. Then scale up over time.

The Pre-Order Mess: Redux

Here we go again with the lobes of SoE’s brain not communicating. You would think that since EQ2 is hardly available in retail stores and it costs SoE a fortune to have a retail presence anyway, and since likely half of the $40 retail price ends up being gobbled up by the publisher, manufacturer, and retail costs, they’d just give up on the retail box like they did last year* and make the DirectDownload desirable. Nope!

The Dire Bear is a Retail Box Pre-Order item only. But wait it gets better…

The Void Beast-in-a-cage house item is a DirectDownload Pre-Order item only.

You guessed it! SoE wants $80 from every player for The Shadow Odyssey. Since they’re already going RMT, and they’re already putting major game-changing stuff into LoN which is basically RMT, like Unicorn mounts (the single-most desired mount for girls), new housing, special mounts, special equipment, etc. why not just let us pay $5 more for the DirectDownload AND get the Bear.

Are you sure it’s a Bear?

Of course while they’re at it, it would be great if they made the Dire Bear look like, you know, a BEAR! It looks like a Sabertoothed Wolf. It is very obvious that they took the existing Warg model and tweaked it, rather than giving us an original mount. This is one of those situations where trying to stick with existing lore is LESS appealing than going for the attractive, extremely popular ice bears from The Golden Compass.

If a pretty unicorn is the fantasty of many girls, an armored ice bear is an equally powerful fantasy for the boys. There aren’t ANY mounts in EQ2 that I am particularly excited about. Maybe that’s why I specced 66% runspeed.

*The Rise of Kunark box contained a poster of a Dark Elf (rather than Kunark) and a poster of Legends of Norrath. The packaging was very cut-rate with paper envelopes for the discs, which for all intents and purposes were EoF DVDs relabeled as Rise of Kunark. Most players saw download times in excess of 2 hours, and analysis of the DVDs revealed no Kunark files whatsoever. The boxed version was just a bad idea all the way around. And this is not to mention the mass confusion this created with pre-orders of the Burynai pet (which was only available in certain situations which were so vague that SoE ended up giving the Burynai pet to everyone anyway).

The Shadow Odyssey Pre-Order

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Uncategorized

EverQuest II’s fifth expansion, The Shadow Odyssey, will be available for pre-order starting Tuesday, October 14th, 2008!  EverQuest II: The Shadow Odyssey is an all-in-one compilation pack featuring five expansion packs and three adventure packs.  New players and veterans alike can journey through a massive amount of exquisite content unlike anything ever before seen in EverQuest II.  The Shadow Odyssey stretches well beyond the fantasy realm and propels the EverQuest II world into a new era of excitement and adventure.  The latest expansion provides content for players level 50-80, including more than 20 new zones and an achievement point increase to 200.

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More Details

Written by Feldon on . Posted in Uncategorized

Some further notes:

The Harvesting Supply Depot has gotten some improvements since FanFaire and currently allows 2,000,000 resources with 100 stacks of 20,000 items each.

The Magic Door to Guild Hall item which can be purchased from City Merchants works instantly. Players do not need to have visited the Guild Hall first.

The mailboxes amenity has been updated to allow up to 5 to be placed in your guild hall. This still counts as 1 amenity.

The Courtyard Landmark statues (300p) require Guild Level 80. All other statues require level Guild Level 75.

The Mariner’s Bell: Kunark ports the player to Kylong Plains docks (Dreg’s Landing).

The Maj’dul (Planetary) Orrey does not count towards the Maximum Amenities.

Amenities & More

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In line with the merging of the Status Executor Hireling and Commodities Exchange Hireling being into one NPC who BUYS status items, etc. from players, we are now getting a Relic and Signet Peddler who is like a City Merchant that sells Signets, Charms, Relics and Symbols. They do not sell any of the other status items like crafting tables or formal wear.  More importantly, they do NOT sell the Magic Door to the Guild Hall.

In other news, the Harvest Supply Depot now feeds into the Tradeskill Tables (if the player is of sufficient permissions in the guild hall to use the Supply Depot and gives a message “Quantities include crafting container.” when viewing a recipe that will draw resources from the Depot.

Because the guild halls currently run on the housing permissions system which only has 4 ranks: None, Visitor, Friend, and Trustee, there is no way to allow certain users to use amenities and not others without giving the folks who CAN use amenities the ability to MOVE them. There just aren’t enough levels of permission.

Guild Ranks?

So I’ve made some posts asking for a Guild Rank Portal or Guild Rank Door which will allow us to block off certain rooms or even entire wings of the guild hall based on guild rank. Then we can put amenities we want to restrict in these areas. I don’t expect it to be bulletproof. If something bugs out, then someone might get past the barrier, and conjurers would be able to summon people beyond such barriers, but it is the broad stroke of making amenities something that are earned rather than automatic which would be very useful for many guilds.

My post can be found halfway down this page, as well as Rothgar‘s response. There are subsequent responses on following pages as well.

The Future

According to Jindrack, who has poured hundreds of hours of development time into the Guild Halls gave us a peek into some planned Amenities that we may see in the future:

A hireling to get people into the city raids was one of the ideas I was working on for the initial launch of the halls, but it looks like it will be something that will have to be held for another phase. It works getting you from the guild hall instance to the raid instance, but the problem is getting the players back to the guild hall instance. This is the same kind of thing that has held back an Arena door amenity idea. When that issue gets addressed it is very likely you’ll see those amenities appear, but it will be at a later time.

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