EverQuest Producer's Letter July 2022

Discussion in 'News and Announcements' started by Angeliana, Jul 21, 2022.

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  1. Oakenblade Former ForumQuest Champion

    I see. I perceived it as a discussion about which items on the roadmap different playerbases (casual v raider) feel should take priority. The roadmap was highlighted in the producer's letter. But I dunno, I'm just some guy.
    Angeliana likes this.
  2. Benito EQ player since 2001.

    I'm guessing they want to avoid 5-10 pages of spam in a 1v1 debate as Darkpaw staff will have to weed through this thread. It's probably fine to make a casual-raider point in 1-2 posts.
    Angeliana likes this.
  3. Oakenblade Former ForumQuest Champion

    That's fair enough
    Angeliana likes this.
  4. I_Love_My_Bandwidth Mercslayer

    Thanks for the letter!

    Please de-prioritize the next expansion in favor of class balance and raid lag. Please. I beg you all. Please. It's almost like you've been tone-deaf to the struggle that should have never been.

    For the love of Brell and all the Norrathian dieties - address raid lag (*first*) and class balance (*second*).

    Thank you!

    PS: JChan, you're fantastic!
    Fenthen likes this.
  5. Oakenblade Former ForumQuest Champion

    I don't think they can. They need to stay on track with their FY and quarterly income goals.
    Fenthen, Stymie, zleski and 1 other person like this.
  6. Jumbur Improved Familiar

    I would guess the owners would listen to reasonable arguments if DBG really tried. Sometimes earning money means playing the long game...
    Skuz likes this.
  7. Panikker Elder

    I just want Agnarr free to play !!! LOL the server is dead and going F2P will increase numbers!! And fix the lag !!
    Fenthen likes this.
  8. Oakenblade Former ForumQuest Champion

    I don't disagree. I personally wouldn't be opposed to the delay of an xpac in favor of fixing issues. But this would require confidence in the product and vision from the decision-makers, which time and experience has shown us that they don't really have in abundance.

    I honestly think this would help a lot for getting people started and/or hooked on the game.
    Skuz likes this.
  9. Nennius Curmudgeon

    I wonder if this same argument would work with pizza? I want it now, I want it fast. I am owed pizza. Give it to me free and maybe I'll buy breadsticks.
    code-zero likes this.
  10. I_Love_My_Bandwidth Mercslayer

    If they made a big deal about fixing lag and class balance issues they'd attract players who left due to these issues.
  11. Lodestar The Undefeated

    It is unconscionable that raid lag was not mentioned, and not responded to anywhere in this thread. It is destroying the game for all raiders on live servers. What's the update?

    Classes will never be perfectly balanced. Niceties can be passed over. However, game debilitating lag for the customers that drive the communities on Live cannot be passed over. This is going to continue to erode the player base until it's addressed.

    Further: Raid lag itself is a direct cause of class imbalance favoring pure casters over melee (especially Beastlords). Raid lag creates variable-rate class imbalances depending on the level of lag in an instance, which can't be solved by fixed-rate class re-balancing. Every top programmer at Daybreak should be prioritized accordingly.
    Cadira and Barton like this.
  12. zleski Augur

    I'm here for the armchair game designers, software engineers, project managers, network engineers and SRE/sysadmins that live in a black and world that has simple, binary decisions free of cost.

    Daybreak, y'all are doing great work. Keep it up.
    Benito and Nennius like this.
  13. zleski Augur

    We are rapidly headed towards a global economic recession where people will be curtailing luxury costs (such as their eq subscriptions). Entirely deprioritizing new, revenue generating content for non-revenue generating work is incredibly irresponsible.

    Many times the issue requires spraying the money gun at the problem: larger server/network equipment to give a better runtime (before noticable latency appears) to literally buy time for engineers to identify and resolve latency issues in code. The former is often far more cost effective compared to the latter when one factors in senior engineer time and opportunity costs.

    Understand that of course nobody wants there to "bad" latency on the game. In the same breath one must be realistic with the costs - financial and otherwise - associated with the issue because even if it isn't written down and published, some decision maker has a measure of what "acceptable" latency is for a given cohort of customers in a given geographic area. The financial cost to improve that measure some percentage point it's far outstriped by the revenue it would take to break even. And there's a recession coming. Everyone, including Daybreak, needs to be making financially responsible decisions that prioritize income.

    Speaking personally as an engineer that carries the pager for a company you have absolutely heard about, I can assure you that not a single engineer for EQ wants there to be latency (and #hugops to them if they get paged for it). Senior engineers don't get to go rogue and spend three years and millions of dollars to improve the latency.
  14. kizant Augur

    Fixing lag is only expensive if you require a technical solution but at this point it makes more sense to focus on the design side. Delete those type 18/19 procs and tweak force proc abilities, delete some swarm pet clickies and lower the number that spells can summon, get rid of quick time and cap spell haste to 30%, increase delays on weapons, cut raids down to 42 people, avoid creating raid events in large zones with a large zone pop, etc.

    Just start making small adjustments to reduce the number of things going on. Class balance is so out of whack at this point there's no real reason to be concerned about messing that up. Although, it would help to focus changes in a way that impacts the strongest classes more than others. Want to improve the necro issue with still needing too many spell sets? Just put a cap on how many DoTs/debuffs you can have active at once. It might feel bad from a design perspective but artificial limits are effective.
    Skuz likes this.
  15. Skrab East Cabilis #1 Realtor

    I'd also add to check the amount scripting being loaded for an event. WoW ran into that issue, where a major raid (Sylvanas) was loading too many scripts at start-up and causing event lag.

    The most common complaint we received was that there was a burst of lag when Sylvanas is first engaged. Our server performance group dug into those reports, and we found the cause – there are a higher-than-usual number of calculations being done at the start of the fight to facilitate the complex mechanics of the encounter. We’re looking into ways we can potentially improve this, but we have to be careful to not change the design or mechanics of the encounter. While this is something that we think we can improve over time, there will still be a few seconds of server lag on pull for now.

    Outside of that moment, our main challenge in diagnosing these lag reports came from the fact that lag was reported in almost every phase of the fight, and we were unable to reproduce that lag in our test cases. In addition to examining our own internal testing, when we utilized our performance analysis tools on actual live raids that reported they were experiencing lag, the server always appeared to be functioning smoothly. This guided our focus elsewhere.

    What we eventually discovered is that the Sylvanas fight in particular is very messaging-heavy, the mechanics involved require sending many frequent updates to the player’s game clients, which in itself isn’t a problem. However, we discovered that an unrelated change to how we organize and distribute server processes across our server hardware, combined with accumulated changes over time to how our hardware server infrastructure is organized, resulted in our server processes being more concentrated across our hardware.

    We believe all of these factors combined to make the messaging overload happen more commonly and cause lag.
    Keella, kizant and Grove like this.
  16. Mesil Lorekeeper

    Want to improve wizard issues? Just put a cap on how many nukes you can cast per minute. It might feel bad from a design perspective but artificial limits are effective.
    Fenthen likes this.
  17. Plumbus Lorekeeper

    Why not just delete the game? No game , no lag.
    Fenthen and zleski like this.
  18. Atomos Augur

    Yeah but Classic EQ was 23 years ago, how much did you see stuff like this happen after Classic? What do you think the reasoning behind that is?

    I have seen ads for Everquest on Facebook.

    Yeah let's hire a steamer that makes more money than the producer of the game to promote a 23 year old game. What is that promotion going to look like? What are they even promoting? Who are they promoting it to?

    Apparently you are out of the loop in regards to AAA studios. They've gone downhill pretty sharply over time. Players are way more happy spending a fraction of the cost on an indie title like Valheim or V Rising and tons others. I'm not sure what studios could even be called AAA anymore, Riot I guess.

    Monthly? lol, are we playing the same game? The most popular MMOs in the world don't even do this. Yearly makes way more sense for EQ, a monthly dev video for EQ would be extremely depressing. You might want to read the patch notes more often.

    A game that lost 98.5% of its launch population in only a few months? I am pretty sure no one needs to be paying ANY attention to that game.

    Yes, let's start giving the people who box the most characters the most power in deciding what the playerbase wants, while those of us who only play 1 character practically don't matter at all.

    lmao. I would love to see your budget for EQ.
    Benito likes this.
  19. MyShadower New Member Adjacent

    If raid lag truly were the #1 problem they should focus on, wouldn't it be possible, between just the 10 guilds that win the race each year, to muster more than 400 likes on a post outlining the problem(s) around it? Of course not everyone uses the forums but if they had an opportunity to send that message loud and clear, wouldn't they give the 5 minutes it would take before/after raids?

    That same group has a large stake in class balance issues.

    The posts that keep churning on these issues feel more and more like the PvP things, the studio needs to see some critical mass before real action and it fails to materialize each cycle so the priority level sees little to no movement.
  20. MacDubh TABLES!!!

    Hard no on deleting 18/19 procs. Those are massive time sinks and for casters the sympathetic procs are one of if not the only reason to fully evolve TBL and ToV evolving items. At this point after working very hard on all 5 of these items over 3 casters I would probably rage quit.
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