EQ2 Producer's Letter - December 2005

Discussion in 'Developer Roundtable' started by ARCHIVED-Gallenite, Dec 16, 2005.

  1. ARCHIVED-Gallenite Guest

    Happy Frostfell!
    The holiday season brings with it many different celebrations, all steeped in their own traditions. It's a time of reflection for some and celebration for others, but most folks have some sort of fondness tucked away for this time of year. Norrath is no different.
    Frostfell is a celebration set in the coldest month of the year, called Deepice, or what we would call part of December and January. As happens with many things, the different races in Norrath have their own views as to how the holiday came about.
    Some say that the celebration began during the Lost Ages, as Innoruuk rebelled against his siblings' abandonment of the mortals. They say he hid secret gifts for the time when he knew his chosen would need them the most, to give them an advantage over others in the troubling times to come.
    The way others would tell the tale, it originated when Quellious herself came down in disguise, demonstrating compassion for both believers and non-, by ensuring that all mortals stood a chance in their trials ahead.
    The one thing that all believers agree on is that it's a time of renewed hope for the future, as the mortals might not be quite as alone as some would have them think.
    You can celebrate too, as the towns are decorated in their Frostfell finery. There are also rumors of the Gigglegibber Goblins making mischief for the tiny elves in their winter wonderland.
    Make sure to take part! If you look around in town and talk to the right person, there's a different Frostfell gift for you every day you log in. (Fifteen gifts, and you can collect them all.)
    We hope you enjoy taking part in Norrath's holiday celebration!
    Stay tuned to http://eq2players.com for more details, new stories, and even new music in the coming days.

    Player vs Player
    PvP has been a topic we've been discussing quite a bit on the team for the past few months, and it's time we start talking about it openly.
    While it's true that we wanted to focus purely on PvE for the launch of EverQuest II, PvP has always been a direction that we've wanted to expand into when the time was right.
    We've had a number of ideas for ways we could introduce PvP. Some weeks ago, we ran a poll on the boards asking what kind of action would interest people the most. The majority indicated they'd first want to see us bring PvP to separate servers containing a distinct ruleset.
    One of the potential plans that we were fond of fit well with that sentiment, and we've been expanding on it for the past few weeks.
    We think it's the best choice for EverQuest II, and we're glad to see that most everyone agreed. After all, EverQuest II has the perfect setting for it. A post-cataclysmic world with factions bitterly divided. Qeynos vs Freeport . Good vs Evil. We couldn't ask for a better setting for this kind of gameplay.
    Expect more details to surface soon in the PvP Forums. For now, here are some of the concepts we've been developing:
    • There will be two new, separate PvP Ruleset servers to begin with. One will most likely be Exchange-Enabled, the other will not. We will have the ability to add more of either kind when the need arises.
    • One huge concern is that no one wants PvP balance to ever impact PvE balance. There will not be PvE combat nerfs because of PvP. We have separate controls for what goes on in PvP. Since this is a piece that we knew we'd need no matter which direction we went, this is something we've already implemented.
    • This is strict good vs. evil. You're only grouping with others of your alignment, and opposing aligned PCs highlight to you the same way that NPC encounters would. If you're betraying or don't have a city to call home, you're an Exile, and a target for everyone.
    • PvP will not be restricted to specific zones. It will take place all across the world of EverQuest II. Fight in dungeons, fight out in the wilds, defend your town, or attack the opposing side.
    • EQ2 will be introducing the concept of Honorable, Neutral, and Dishonorable victories. Honorable victories are where the rewards lie.
    • The first of the rewards for defeating your city's enemies include: Status and Standing with your PvP faction.
    • Additionally, we would like to include adventure experience rewards. While exceptionally difficult, it would be theoretically possible to level up purely by defeating other players in combat. This is a concept that we are working hard to be able to include, and hope that we are able to prevent friend-farming enough to where it is a concept that can see the light of day.
    • Once you earn PvP standing, you can buy valuable and useful items from your faction's merchants. This is real, desirable equipment, not just tokens, trophies, and trinkets, though we will be trying to include these as well for flavor. You wouldn't be able to dress yourself head to toe in them, though, as Adventuring and Crafting still play an important role in this ruleset.
    Stay tuned to the forums in the coming weeks for more information on both the ruleset and how you can help playtest it on the PvP beta server.
    It's time to heat up the cold war.

    Classes and Cities
    The main idea behind the Archetype, Class, Subclass progression was to ease people in to playing EQ2 and give them time to explore playstyles behind their main archetype, eventually "growing into" their final profession. It's an idea that's unique to EQ2, and I think we executed on it well.
    That said, there are a few places where it hasn't worked out as well as we'd have liked. In this section, I'm going to talk about a few changes that are coming for the under level 20 crowd and the benefits we see in making these changes.
    In a coming update, tentatively set for mid to late January, people will be able to pick their final class right at character creation and begin earning appropriate abilities and spells from the outset.
    In addition, the good island and evil island will become very different experiences. Further, the starting town zones and their adventure areas will be redone to support an experience that's much more racially distinct. It's the same EQ2 gameplay you know and love, but all new population, rewards, quests, and goals. A little less handholding, and lot more involvement with your racial background through quests and lore.
    In practical terms, here's what we see as the benefit of all of this:
    Once this goes live, for those who are under level 20 and whose path wasn't already preordained due to alignment in the current system, you'll be presented with a choice to make when you log in for the first time. At that point, you'll be able to directly pick which final class to become.
    If you have upgraded any existing pre-20 skills or spells, they will be mapping to your final class spells in a similar manner. As a practical example, this means that if you upgraded your level 18 spell to Adept III quality, you won't have the original spell anymore, but a similar spell in your new class will be automatically granted to you at Adept III.
    You can expect this to start making its way to the Test Server in the coming weeks, and we'll be talking more about it in the forums.

    From all of us on the EverQuest II team, happy holidays to you and yours, both in game and out!
    And, as always, good hunting,
    - Scott
  2. ARCHIVED-Marillion Guest

    A small problem, we're in Blossoming in game atm. 7 Game months away from Deepice (1 real life month?).
  3. ARCHIVED-Star Guest

    Time to fast forward the in game calander. :D
  4. ARCHIVED-Almeric_CoS Guest

    What sort of effect will this new system have on betrayal?
  5. ARCHIVED-Jezekiell Guest

    I've been waiting for PvP details for a long time now, and I spent the majority of my EQLive time on Vallon Zek. So it's good to finally hear something about the plans for the upcoming PvP system.

    Though reading over the bullet point list you've written I can't see anything regarding an incentive to do PvP, other then the fact that, you get to beat up the other Citys players, which gets dreadfully boring after a while if there is no purpose to PvP. ie. Where is the PvP content? Castle Siges? City assaults? Capturing of hotspot locations scattered around the world? All with bonuses to the winning side.

    All I read from the above is mindless gankfests with an honor system similar sounding to "That Other Game".
  6. ARCHIVED-Morigana Guest

    PLEASE tell us that T6 carpenter rare books and assasin dps are gonna be fixed first along with buggy houses and broken book cases and mobs in walls.
    Please don't experiment on us again with out fixing what is already in place.
    frustrated crafter, non-pvp person
  7. ARCHIVED-Alarye Guest

    I cannot wait to see the upcoming changes...
    awww nevermind, this is gonna become a "Fix bugs first" and "I want to overreact completely to these ideas before the details are finished" thread anyway..

    Message Edited by Alarye on 12-16-2005 01:38 PM
  8. ARCHIVED-Coccinea_Maga Guest

    1 Norrathian Day = ~72 minutes
    Assuming 30 days for each Norrathian month -- 1 Norrathian month = ~36 hours
    So 7 Norrathian months would be equal to approximately 10.5 days.

    Side note -- If all this is true, 20 Norrathian years have passed since the game was launched. You'd think by now Nathan Ironforge would have grown up and stopped asking if I have ever seen a gnoll before.
  9. ARCHIVED-Marillion Guest

    Yeah, so past our Xmas, but ya can handle that if its not suppose to be actually xmas :p

    And btw, i was having a hard time reading that out about Ironforge on my vent server without laughing and falling off my chair.

    Nice one Coccinea_Maga.

    What made it even more funny is he's running around me atm in QH saying those words.

    Oh and on another point, i want my 19 years (20 -1 for last year's xmas) worth of missing presents .... a massive 285 gifts :p
    Message Edited by Marillion on 12-16-2005 07:47 PM
  10. ARCHIVED-Bandito X Guest

    I am very excited for this! Let's just hope it is as succesful as the Arenas. :smileytongue:
  11. ARCHIVED-Murchik Guest

    I really, really, really * n want to hope this is true, but, knowing your track record I will bookmark it and reference it the day it goes live. Because you and I know that the day PvP goes live, there is going to be so much imbalance, one way or the other, that these boards will be moving post counts like there is no tomorrow. You want to make this work, hint for you, the trick is in ... testing. Try it for a change, it might prove usefull.
  12. ARCHIVED-Ever-Befallen Guest

    I second this. T6 carpenter rare books and T6 writs please, and thank you.
  13. ARCHIVED-Foolsfolly Guest

    I can't believe you are removing the class progression 1-20. IMO, this is the worst change since the creation of this game.
  14. ARCHIVED-Blackguard Guest

    There will, of course, always be balance issues that need to be hammered out after PvP hits a wide audience. However, what Scott was pointing out here is that we aren't going to change any PvE class balancing because of PvP. We don't have to, because our coders were able to build in a method for us to have completely separate PvE and PvP effects for every spell.

    I'm disappointed to see what is in effect the removal of the archetype system. You've listed real problems that exist, but I don't see why they couldn't be fixed within the archetype system. Enchanters get Charm in the teens, but it is of no use to Illusionists later (there are similar examples with other classes), there's no reason they couldn't do that with the remaining classes to give everyone a taste of subclasses they may be interested in choosing. I like the strong foundation that the archetype system provides over the alternative of distinct and often disjointed classes that EQ1 and other games have, which I fear is what will ultimately happen here.

    Secondarily, what will happen to betraying if you choose your final class immediately? I'm hoping someone didn't decide it "wasn't fun" and "will be removed."
  16. ARCHIVED-Atmosphear1993 Guest

    Question about the class changes coming up. How will betrayel quests be handled since they are removing the class tree? You would have to betray before you become fully aligned with good or evil (example a crusader from Qeynos betraying to become a SK.) Is it going to be changed so betrayels are not possible, or will betrayels give the person a completely new set of abilities associated with their new class?
  17. ARCHIVED-TwistedFaith Guest

    Couldnt care less about PvP.

    What I do care about is why I still haven't got tier 6 rare carpenter recipes THREE MONTHS AFTER THE EXPANSION.

    Merry Christmas.
  18. ARCHIVED-VeraIkonica Guest

    Question about the class changes coming up. How will betrayel quests be handled since they are removing the class tree? You would have to betray before you become fully aligned with good or evil (example a crusader from Qeynos betraying to become a SK.) Is it going to be changed so betrayels are not possible, or will betrayels give the person a completely new set of abilities associated with their new class?
    I guess everyones wood elf [expletive haxx0red by Raijinn]'s and euridite conj's will not be special anymore. :smileysad:
    (hmm good ol Raijinn blocked my abrieviation for assasin so that all of those wow kiddies virgin eyes would not be ruined I suppose)
    Message Edited by VeraIkonica on 12-16-2005 12:30 PM
  19. ARCHIVED-swampthing Guest

    The AT system never made any practical sense anyhow, glad it's being removed. Made no sense for me to have to play as a fighter, then a crusader and then a shadowknight when i had absolutely no choice once i made a choice anyhow. If it would have worked so that you could change your mind at some point then it might have made sense to have all these AT's but as the system works now it just is pointless.

    What i'd REALLY like to see in regards to the stuff you hinted about with racial changes and racial lore is race specific armor that makes sense. That was one of the best things about EQ1, iksar had armor graphics just for them, sure they looked like mountain dew cans, but still. Trolls had crappy ripped up armor, etc. I was really disapointed to see EQ2, a next gen MMORPG, actually take a step backwards in many cases.
  20. ARCHIVED-Impetus Guest

    It'd be nice to have a couple more character slots when some of these changes go in. :)

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