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Reader Comments (13)

Posted: Nov 15th 2010 3:37PM Seffrid said

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The game does not need to be dumbed down any more! Server mergers are fine, but leave the rest as is.

Posted: Nov 15th 2010 4:31PM Saker said

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Couldn't agree more! They've already gone too far with dumbing it down. I used to play on A-B, was gone till the recent free version, and wow, they have dumbed things down so much... Too much really!
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Posted: Nov 15th 2010 4:35PM Bhagpuss said

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Seconded.

Don't fix what isn't broken.
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Posted: Nov 15th 2010 5:24PM Audacious said

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Can anyone name specifics? What was better about EQ2 in the "good ol' days?"
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Posted: Nov 15th 2010 5:06PM Karen Bryan said

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I'll admit this was a bit tongue-in-cheek, and some of these I wouldn't ever expect to see go live. But before throwing the baby out with the bathwater, I do think a few of the things I listed are worth a second glance. Making something more intuitive doesn't mean dumbing it down.

At bare minimum, I think we can all agree that gnomes need to go.

Posted: Nov 15th 2010 5:24PM oxlar said

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ehhh, I disagree with most of your article. Don't homogenize this game into some loreless drab by calling everything 'loot' or 'small race' or 'token'. It is very easy to level your adventure class, tradeskill class, and especially your AAs.

Posted: Nov 15th 2010 6:53PM Seffrid said

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Raze said: "Can anyone name specifics? What was better about EQ2 in the "good ol' days?""

Specific examples of dumbing down include race/class alignment changes so as to make most of them neutral, thereby trivialising the whole "good versus evil" faction concept (including the trivialisation of the betrayal quests).

Travel changes so everywhere can be reached by clicking on a globe which means, for example, that instead of floating on a cloud between the different isles in the Kingdom of Sky with fantastic views (especially on full settings) you have a loading screen while you zone (more or less) instantly. That change also removed the tactical element of getting past mobs to reach the cloud portals to other areas.

Dumbed down spell/combat art effects (and the removal of their distinctive names), removal of two of the best starting areas, and so many other changes designed to appeal to less demanding gamers who were never going to be attracted anyway.

Posted: Dec 8th 2010 4:07PM pcgneurotic said

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@Seffrid

Yes! Finally, I thought I was alone mourning the cloud transports in KoS. That was quite the most bone-headed thing they ever did.
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Posted: Nov 15th 2010 9:53PM (Unverified) said

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Nothing wrong with any of your suggestions, Karen, except they can't or won't do it in this game. Sony would rather spend the time and money on the next game, rather than band-aid'ing EQ2.

Which is a real shame, because the mechanics and graphics engine have the potential for extraordinary depth and complexity. The AA's could be so much better than they are, but they aren't.

It's almost like they had really good ideas during the past 7 years, thought them through 90% of the way, and implemented them about half as good as they could be. It doesn't help that pretty much the entire original team has been replaced, so the "new guys" don't know the systems nearly as well as the old guard.

A case in point is the number of times crafting in the game has fundamentally changed. Not just the interface, which is badly outdated compared to reality, but also the recipes and desirability of the items produced. At one point, there were 4 different qualities for every time, so the crafting interface has four 'tiers'. Except years ago, that was all done away with. You either make it, or you don't, but the interface still has 4 'tier's all of which result in the same thing. Pointless, really.

The ability to set your personal level to any previous arbitrary level would also be a great change, but they refuse to do it. Instead there's a clunky combination of mentoring and "chronomagerancyishness".

It doesn't help that (yes, as of this date & time) there is an AA xp bug that prevents a low level player from gaining AA experience for every kill, once their AA count exceeds their character level. Known bug, for months. No fix forthcoming, planned, or acknowledged. Basically it's a rounding error. WTH? A rounding error in a 7 year old so called AAA MMO? Holy Brell underground, fix that crap pronto! Don't believe me? Create a character, level to 10, then move the AA xp slider to 100%, so all your experience is devoted to AA. Now watch the AA xp bar. Note how 25-50% of the time, when you kill something, you don't gain AA xp. Now go search the official forums, and you'll find the problem enumerated by many players.

I agree the AA grind is a painful experience if you do it 'normally'. The problem is, for the past year, it's been possible to reach level 90 with 250 aa's in less than a weekend if you do it right. Wait for a double-XP weekend. You get a Refer-A-Friend account, have it mentor you, and get in a group killing nothing but triple-up heroics in contested dungeons. Nothing to it, you ding so fast it'll make your head spin.

Using the above method, you can get to level 90 in under 6 hours, is the current record. Want 90+250, it'll take about 36 hours.

The best part? Shadowknights and Berserkers, with the right gear, AA spec, and mentored are basically unkillable. I have personally witnessed a Berserker kill an entire room (I'm talking over 25 heroic mobs (all level +1 or level +2) with 5 other characters in tow, while mentored, and their health bar does not move more than 5% from maximum. It's ridiculous.

"Normal" players can take months to reach 90/250. Players in the know? Less than two days. Hm.. there's something not quite... I can't put my finger on it... Oh right, it's a snafubar!

Currently, properly spec'd and geared Necromancers can solo level 90 raid trash mobs. Not an exaggeration in the slightest. Solo, they can farm raid zones. Non stop. 24 x 7 if they want to. Should take 24 players. Takes one, of the right insanely overpowered class.

And yet, at least one quarter (if not one third) of the classes in the game, with full fabled / max level raid gear cannot solo a single heroic monster of their own level, in an instance. So you've got a range of personal power disparity the likes of which hasn't been seen since Asheron's Call 2 pre-nerf Tacticians.

Having been on this roller-coaster ride since EQ2 beta, I do not personally understand why it is so hard for the developers, designers, and management at SOE to actually follow the spreadsheets. Anyone, and I mean anyone with more than 1 year full-time dev experience in this genre could do a better job at future proofing balance than SOE has managed to do with EQ2. Every expansion, nerf, claw back, step forward. Next expansion, repeat. Two steps backwards, one step forward.

It's beyond incompetent. It's beyond silly. It's beyond stupid. It's like they're reading chapter and verse out of the "Big Book Of Fail".

Today, single hits in EQ2, in a raid environment, can exceed 200k damage. Typical hits for even a modestly geared player are around 10k per strike. How does that scale? Where do you draw the line in player power when you're hitting for 10-200k at level 90, and the game was originally planned for level 200? Really? Players are going to be hitting for millions or billions of damage, eventually? How is that balanced? Oh wait, it's not.

There is a lot to change (or could change), as you've potentially outlined, Karen. Unfortunately, at this point, given the effort, it would definitely be easier to start over, IMHO.

Posted: Nov 16th 2010 3:09AM (Unverified) said

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Your comments are so, so relevant. I joined EQ2 mid-EoF, and the game has gone downhill so much even since then. It's like they spend half their time fixing their mistakes/revamping old stuff for the 'I want it now!' crowd, a quarter of their time pushing Station Cash on us, and the other quarter of the time actually developing the game.
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Posted: Nov 15th 2010 10:37PM (Unverified) said

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I never post on this site, as I have never had the need to agree/disagree or comment on a particular post until now. You and others like you are the reason that EQ2 in it's current state is complete garbage and continuing down the crapper. This entire post is not suggestions about fixing things, to me it is a cry and moan about stuff you want to be "easier". I recently quit when it went F2P because things were becoming way too easy and it was ruining the entire "Everquest" experience for me. I just don't understand honestly where people like you are coming from when you make articles like this.

1. Tokens, too many different kinds? Um, last time I played you could buy/craft 40 slot bags and had more than 20 bags slots on each character. That includes house and bank bag slots, not to mention the character slots. That is 800+ spots to put your tokens. How hard is it to have one bag and just throw them all in there? It's called organization, it's not difficult.

2. Hometowns are about Lore. As pointed out by a previous poster, before they made a lot of the classes neutral, the good/evil premise brought about a feeling of adventure sneaking through the different towns to find the sewers and avoid the guards. These towns had created a bunch of good memories through my time playing and I am sure I am not alone.

3. Nothing is wrong with the classes either. Are you suggesting they are consolidated? I loved the fact that you had a vast number of choices to play. Each class has something that it brings to the table and you saying that some get left out or aren't needed, well that happens in every game. Next expansion the class that was hated might find some needed love, then people will complain about a different one. It's like this in EVERY game.

4. This probably makes me laugh the most. You have trouble getting to 90? Join a guild and have someone mentor you and run through lower level dungeons hitting up all the named for the AA. Leveling in Eq2 is a joke and I really don't understand what there is to complain about. I could level to 90 in a week before I quit, with all the potions you get for your account (not to mention the marketplace crap which I never used). You are one of those people who wants to be instantly gratified. Enjoy leveling and don't blaze through the levels skipping all the content and maybe you will see what an amazing game this actually is.

5. This is also fairly easy to accomplish. In all my time that I spent playing Eq2 there wasn't one time that I found my toon with under 150 AA when hitting the level cap. That gives me 100 AA to get on my own which GIVES ME SOMETHING TO DO SO I DON'T GET BORED AND QUIT THE GAME! Go back and do quests you missed, self mentor (or mentor a friend who needs help) and hit up named and dungeons you missed. The devs have to give you some incentive to stay playing their game, or you will just jump on the gear grindfest wagon and find yourself burnt out in a month.

6. The looted curiosity treasure "used" to give a certain amount of AA xp when looted from mobs and is worth more than your average "junk". So the fact that someone asks what it is for and someone answers "sell it" it's not the end of the world. Those questions arise in ALL MMOs if I am not mistaken. I remember playing Lotro and I found myself asking the same question "what is this for?" with particular items, and I never heard anyone say "my goodness, why don't they just tag everything with the label "vendor trash" so people will shut up."

7. I'm not even gonna go into this, people seriously need to upgrade their pc's and just shut up already. Too many people are playing the game on systems that are almost 10 years old. No wonder there is lag. Some people enjoy decorating and have ZERO problems with lag. And no my pc isn't brand new or top of the line, but the game always ran perfect for me.

8. Ha! Get rid of some of the spells and combat arts? You have trouble playing the game because you have too many spells? Go play WoW or Lotro then. They are EZ mode and right up your ally. The amount of spells and complexity is what made the game interesting for me. Having to come up with spell rotations for certain and different situations was a wonderful part of learning your class and how it works. Learn to play your class and you will notice you have less problems.

9. Getting rid of a race? I can see that Lore means nothing to you.

I will close by saying thank you for being "one of those" players over the years who has caused this game to be completely dumbed down and ruin it for a lot of people. I am baffled at how much more you want it dumbed down. I have since left Eq2 and moved on as the game was ruined, but I will not stand for more stupid suggestions. I know these are all your opinions, but you already have a game that plays just the way you want, so unsubscribe and go play that one instead. There is no point in trying to turn every single game into a wow clone. Some people hate wow...

Posted: Nov 16th 2010 7:29AM (Unverified) said

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I agree with your comments, I've had the same experiences in EQ2 and have moved on as well.

It's not out yet but you might look into GW2; the dev team of Guild Wars really shows their love for the game, explains all changes to the players in update posts (not just that they were changed, but WHY), and it doesn't have a subscription fee. The dynamic events system, situational skills (skills changed based on your attunement/position/weapon), and deep lore sound like it could make a good replacement for the 'old EQ2' for those of us that prefer an engaging, deep game.
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Posted: Nov 16th 2010 9:29AM Aleforge said

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I have to say all the pure choices is one of the unique and interesting aspects of EQ2 that set it apart from the pack. Its also really nice to have plenty of race options and classes to choose from. Not everyone raids, I did very sparsely over the games life and now don't have the time or the will to stay up all night doing so anymore. Hence having multiple fighter options does not effect me, unless again you like to have plenty of options at your disposal. Yes class balancing has always been a pain, and some of the classes just aren't liked, or needed much. But why consolidate all these options to make the game more vanilla?

Server mergers YES! No problem with that, its hard to find a group on half the servers these days. Otherwise taking out features seems to be a bad idea.

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