The difference between now and then

Discussion in 'Time Locked Progression Servers' started by Niskin, Mar 21, 2018.

  1. Niskin Augur

    It's interesting to see some of the things that get discussed because of the existence of TLP servers. There is always somebody who wants to bring back corpse runs, and somebody who misses the super slow exp and hell levels. There are people who say "just get a group and it will all work out," which is true, but is getting a group an option for that person? They don't always think about that.

    The thing is that people have different lives and different mindsets. Commitment levels can vary wildly, and many people can't commit at the same level they did back in the day. The game has changed, we have changed, and the world has changed. The point is that not everybody can play this game the way they used to. That means that to keep a healthy subscriber level, EQ has had to change, and that's not a bad thing.

    So let's jump back to 1999. I was 24 years old, single, and could not only play as much as I wanted, but could also have long periods of uninterrupted time to focus on EQ. Grouping was always an option, raiding was always an option. Heck, staying up all night to camp the Ancient Cyclops, because the camp suddenly opened up, was an option. And calling in to work if I stayed up too late was an option.

    Now you'll find ages ranged during this period, from people in High School to people much older than me. But the original core of Everquest players were people with lots of restriction free time for gaming. I know I personally played just about every day from when I started in May 99 to sometime during the Velious era. I did public raids every weekend. I grouped constantly. Led a raid to get my (and several others) Rogue Epic. And near the end of the golden times, I even led weekly zone raids for casual guilds I was in, to show our most casual members some zones they wouldn't normally see.

    Sometime around Luclin or PoP, it all started to change. I met my future wife, who had a 3 year old son. We moved in together, and before we even got married it started to impact my EQ time. Eventually this led to me quitting the game, coming back, quitting again, giving away my stuff, coming back and getting my stuff back (good friends, yay). And then from there it was just coming back and leaving again periodically.

    All that coming back and leaving was because I would try to play the way I used to, as much as I wanted and with full commitment during the play sessions. No interruptions, so I could group or raid. That would cause conflict and i'd have to quit again. These days I've got it more under control, I know my limitations and what causes trouble, but that means some things are just out.

    The commitment level is gone, interruptions will happen. I can't tell my wife she has to wait to talk to me if an emergency comes up. I can't tell my son I can't help him with his math homework because I'm in a fast killing group and I don't want to miss out. I have friends who understand that, and on a live server it's generally fine with mercs taking up a lot of slack. But on TLPs if you aren't fully committed then you are holding people up. I won't join a group or form one if I can't commit to it.

    Agnarr was fun. I took a few days off work for the launch, but more importantly, my wife was 12 hours away on vacation visiting family. Commitment level 100%, playtime level 100%. It was like I was 24 again for a few days, but it wasn't sustainable. These servers are fun when you can do 100/100, but not so fun if you can't.

    I've even reached a point in my job where I can play from work sometimes, but the commitment level is basically 0%. I have to be able to get up and walk away immediately. If that means I die, then I die. I can't group under those conditions, won't even try. It just makes it more frustrating, and certainly means I can't heal or pull or tank.

    So I actually have decent amount of playtime right now, but it's not quality playtime. It's not time I can commit to grouping or raiding. I don't think people always understand that in the quest to define people as hard-core or casual.

    EQ has to cater to people in my situation, at least a little bit, because it needs our money also. That's not to say the game needs to go the way of WoW just to keep people like me happy, but certain changes have been good and should not be reverted. Slow exp and corpse runs are among those things. Making solo and duo options viable can be a good thing for a person like me.

    I'm not naive, this situation means servers like Coirnav and Phinny aren't really for me, and even Agnarr at launch wasn't a great fit. But I'm glad I've had the chance to participate even a little bit. I do miss the old days, but I can't go back. So I have to enjoy EQ any way I can with the time I have.
    Chatoyan, Adrienna, Critt and 5 others like this.
  2. Rhodz Augur

    Not that much has changed, it was the never ending freaking grind that caused us to leave this game every time. Every time
    Prob could say that about the very large majority of players. The grind was there because there just was not that much to the game in the beginning and it was purposely cultivated to keep players online as much as possible, and the consequences of it is high attrition.
    If my wife didn't like the game we would never come back.
    Ronzark, snailish and HoodenShuklak like this.
  3. Dahaman Augur

    Niskin, it's like you wrote that post about my EQ history. Nicely put.

    Worth highlighting and repeating:

    "certain changes have been good and should not be reverted. Slow exp and corpse runs are among those things. Making solo and duo options viable can be a good thing"
    Critt, snailish and Rhodz like this.
  4. Rhodz Augur

    Exactly, even duo is very slow so some one has to box a third even a forth for two people to get though the drudgery so they can do the better things. Grinding is just a mind killer.
  5. oldkracow Augur

    If the new server is success in terms of sales of krono, potions etc.... then we'll continue to see more of them.

    One thing I've learned is that Agnarr's exp rate is the slowest I can personally tolerate and accomplish things in. All the best for those that can do the slower exp rates.

    We'll see what happens down the road as we know the next TLP isn't that far off.
  6. Ghubuk Augur

    That's why it would be nice to see a tlp server (non true box) but that didn't allow 3rd party software (though not even sure that is even doable). That way if people box, they have to do it the old fashioned way.
  7. Rhodz Augur

    So far I have yet to see anything done that would negatively affect DBG Store sales.
    not one thing
    Thus the problem is the game is a means to the sale not the point of it. As an observation
    snailish likes this.
  8. Accipiter Augur

    Isn't that what true box does? "The old fashioned way" is one character per PC. Or do you mean you'd want to be able to alt-Tab box with no assistance from 3rd party software?
  9. Candystore Augur

    I think that this is partly the fault of the players.

    In general, players ask for 'classic' servers. It just so happens that classic-kunark is the most time-consuming and least casual part of EQ.

    You have no fast travel. You have no ooc regen, you have no easy access to loot like you have in expansions like LDON.

    What I don't get is people who want to have a more casual experience, and then pick classic.

    Simple changes like making the guildmaster newbee gear available from the start of the game would make the game less brutal. Not only that, it would make krono farmers less powerful. But yet when one suggests that, people are ... generally ... against it. Why.
    snailish likes this.
  10. Ghubuk Augur

  11. Niskin Augur

    Nostalgia doesn't care about feasibility studies, or something like that. We miss it and try to participate because of that. I was one of the people who supported keeping the tutorial and related newbie gear off of Agnarr. While it may have benefitted me for it to be there eventually, it didn't fit with the reason I was on the server to begin with.

    I love my wife and my kids, but I miss the option to go full commitment for at least some period of time. So I keep trying to get as close as I can.
    snailish likes this.
  12. snailish Augur

    We don't really want what we think we want is probably the short answer.

    We're a very splinterable population as well. For example, a racing unlock server that did not have the extra instancing or load balancing, relied on open world content beating to unlock the server and automatically rolled over two week later would probably be perfectly viable for a group of people. Catch live it dumps the characters into somewhere and starts over. Give special rewards for beating the unlocks first (incentivize the race) it probably does even better. [Not my thing at all, but some would love it]

    A server that started at Luclin or even GoD, had a highish XP rate with 3-4 month unlocks would probably work too.

    However, the compromise rulesets like Phinny have done a good job of capturing many splinters rather than servring a few best.
    Chatoyan likes this.
  13. Micker Elder

    Wow, I could have pretty much written that myself lol. I started in 1999 and was 27. I remember my friend coming over to play cards and had a copy EQ in his hands. We used to play D&D when we were young and this looked so Awesome!! Created a paladin and he was a druid. Spending hours and hours camping and raiding. Then I got married not too long after and would play for hours when she went to sleep. It definitely started to effect our relationship, camping ghoulbane all day and night until 7am the next day(still didn't get it that time lol), can't be understood by anyone who didn't play the game. I just didn't have time to raid or group for hours anymore. I could play on and off, so I ended up making a bunch of accounts and boxed when I had time.

    I quit and have come back so many times since then. I totally missed some expansions and then I would come back and got my toons up to date. I play on FV now, so I can gear up my toons pretty well. When I quit last time, I sold all my gear and bought a ton of Kronos(about 50) for like 200k each lol. I came back and found they go for like 4+Mill now(sold a couple for 6M)!! So plat is not an issue. It's also awesome that you get auto AA for older expansions. Logging into a toon and seeing like 4kaa get added is pretty sweet!! Helps make getting back into the game less painful, definitely a good move on their part to do that.

    So I saw the new server and it looked interesting. I was thinking about my first days in EQ and what a new world it was!! Met a lot of nice people and made a lot of friends. It was more about exploring and hanging out doing fun things, then it was a race to 50. Leveling was so slow, you kinda had to forget about it and enjoy the social aspect. So much fun, cazic thule and lower guk were big favorites of mine. I started an enchanter on the new server and like level 4 now. It's getting old killing rats and bats, but I will be high enough to group up soon and I'm hoping I can get into some fun groups. I know it will never be like the first days of EQ, but should be nostalgic and fun. Much fewer buttons and less chaos, is really nice.
    snailish likes this.
  14. Accipiter Augur

    I started playing when I was 40. My wife would periodically get mad and delete EQ from my PC. I'd reinstall and wait the 5 hours or whatever (just making up a number) it took to patch on dialup and carry on. Finally, she gave up and started playing EQ. She played a cleric for years.
  15. Turinbar Augur

    I think this may be the most accurate quote to sum up the state of the game at the moment, especially for Cornaiv.
    Rhodz likes this.
  16. snailish Augur

    ^Interesting point.

    Would we have a better gaming experience if the following was done:

    All NPC dropped loot made nodrop (with room for a logical exception list)
    All tradeskill made gear made attuneable
    A gear set made available for each expac from the daybreak store that was equal to a "well equipped grouping character" of that era.

    The daybreak store gearset could be included or locked out on servers as per specific ruleset intent. But overall the idea is... people can pay to have the gear boost so instead of giving it to so many farmers you pay Daybreak directly. Meanwhile, you can immersive play and earn just as good and better gear the old fashion way with less competition from permafarming. This won't remove all farming, but it would move to the most lucrative loot rights camps, something most of the playerbase can ignore most of the time.
    Rhodz likes this.
  17. Corak Elder

    The OP described perfectly the situation for many of us older players of this game. I started in 2000 when I was already 40 and my wife and I had a 4 year old and just had newborn twins. I said to myself I was going to be housebound for a loooong time, so went down to the local Fry's and picked up a CD of EQ Kunark. 140 days played later, my 110 shaman original main is still at it, along with more recent box team characters.

    I get the impression that that the current hard core are folks that still have lots of time to play, while there is a large faction of (filthy) casuals like me that no longer can justify that much time away from family. But these more casual players have been supporting this game for up to 19 years and have a long term interest in keeping it alive.

    EoK was a big win for folks like me. RoS seems a lot less suited for players like me. I never finished EoK progression with my 3 box team and feel like I cant really complete any of the missions, so why bother with RoS progression. More committed players can do it, clearly, but it doesnt work for me.

    My suggestion to the devs, for the long term health of this game, is to think hard about making the game accessible and rewarding for the more casual players who have stuck around for almost 2 decades with this game, while still making room for the hard core to feel like they have substantial rewards for all that extra commitment. This is entertainment, so try to entertain your core audiences.
  18. Rhodz Augur

    It would beat the hell out of this insane krono economy for sure.
    Anything that ends the krono farce short of pulling the plug is, I think, an improvement.
    So yes, this is why I always politiced for an FV rules TLP up to and including the char limit.
  19. Rhodz Augur

    Well lets do be realistic, DBG is making the rules players just ask for what they THINK is going to happen due to that request and then DBG of course has a tendency to implement it in a fashion that just does the unexpected, to be kind.
    The experience is dictated more by the implementation than the "feature" in soooo many cases.
    PS As for classic and kunark, if you had the con, how easily could you fix some of this?
    This is due to you actually still playing it.
  20. Beggly Augur

    I am pretty much the definition of casual player. Really. I can play for long hours, I can play every day, I can play with as much commitment as I want, but what I can't do is spend every minute at the computer. I have to get up and move around and be, well, normal sometimes. I am limited by my health to avoid certain kinds of repetitive actions, like sitting too long, standing too long, etc.. This makes some forms of grouping, and specifically raiding, where you have to be aware of instructions 100% of the time, difficult if not impossible.

    That said, I really wish we could avoid the grind. I hate the grind. I don't mind it in limitation, mind you. Some forms of grind are fine, like camping something that is a great reward. But grinding from L1 to L20 is not my cup of tea. That's why Power Leveling and such concepts are so popular. I happened to dislike power leveling. I don't want to leave my computer with my character afk for hours just to avoid the grind. It seems to me to be a subversion of the game process. All this reduction of exp and limited exp and such is not something I appreciate. I don't want exp to be free, but why must we use artificial means to level or go without leveling? I never liked this back in the day, and I don't like it now. Been in EQ since 2001, and other than a few months off to have my colon cancer fixed, I've been pretty loyal. I don't really like live servers. I kinda like TLP servers. How about introducing a TLC server without all the exp changes, but keeping the other changes like no boxing? I think I could get behind that easily enough.

    That said, since I'm single, effectively retired, and don't have to answer to anything but my own body for my play time, I'm free to do anything I want. Including grind for hours on end. Sigh. Is this fun? Sometimes. Not ALL THE TIME, though. A few shortcuts that were not questionable would be nice.
    Ronzark likes this.

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