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Posted: Aug 25th 2011 1:32PM Birk said

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Anyone here playing EQII that can give me a brief summation about their experiences with the game? I'm currently in LOTRO and I was thinking of trying out the F2P server. How does it stack up?

-Birk

Posted: Aug 25th 2011 2:06PM aurickle said

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@Birk
I can't speak about the f2p server other than that if you're going to play with enough regularity to want to buy the top tier of service, you'll actually save money by being on the regular servers. It works out to about $2 a month less that way.

My recommendation would be to get the free trial that they have going. http://massively.joystiq.com/2011/08/25/everquest-ii-beefs-up-its-free-trial/ This will let you play the game and see what you think.

Now as a lifetime LotRO player and a LONG time EQ2 player, I can speak a bit about how the games compare. These are my opinions, of course. Your mileage may vary.

1) The graphics are not as good in EQ2. While there are some gorgeous vistas to be had, I think LotRO is the prettier game.

2) Combat is similar between the two games. In fact, LotRO even has fellowship maneuvers while EQ2 has heroic opportunities. The difference is you don't have to be a burglar to trigger an HO. Any character can do so at any time.

3) EQ2 has WAY more class diversity. It also has WAY more race diversity. Min/Max folks will recommend specific races for specific classes but the difference is honestly minimal. I recommend just choosing what you want to play and go for it. By the time you're mid level you can easily have compensated for any weaknesses your race might have started with.

4) Speaking of which, EQ2 offers vastly more in the way of character customization. This is not only with your character's physical traits but also with tweaking your advancement. You regularly get racial traits to choose from, class traits to choose from, etc. This is similar in a way to LotRO's trait system except that they unlock automatically as you level. You also have Alternate Advancement which provides several different trees in which to spend hundreds of points that you earn as you play. So you can truly customize how your character plays. The only place LotRO wins here is with outfits. EQ2 only allows a single appearance tab as opposed to multiple ones. On the other hand, EQ2 has more variety in the appearance of your gear and you can even have cosmetic weapons.

5) EQ2 has vastly more content than LotRO. It will take you a LOT longer to reach maximum level even if you level as fast as you possibly can. You will also constantly find yourself leveling faster than you complete content. Some players choose to disable experience and level lock themselves so that they can do everything. Others (like me) convert a significant portion of XP into AA experience. In my case I play with 25% conversion rate and I still outlevel stuff just in the single zone I play in. There are usually multiple zones at any level range so you could quite literally play to max several times without repeating any content.

6) The housing in EQ2 blows LotRO away. They're not even in the same universe. No hooks. Hundreds of items allowed per personal home (and more for guild halls). Total freedom in where you place items, with the ability to scale, rotate and adjust the height of items. Each city has very distinctly different home styles, and each has multiple floorplans to choose from. Furnishings come from stores, quests, the monthly city festivals and crafting. There are literally thousands of items you can choose from. And if you get bored with your home, never fear because you can own up to ten of them and even link many of them together via portals. Oh, you can also action the auction system from your house, putting stuff up for sale and even use display furnishings so that people can buy stuff with a broker discount if they come to your home to get it. There's much, much more storage space (room for hundreds of items in your chest if you put big crates in the slots). You can even put crafting stations in your home. The guild hall system is just as advanced.

7) Crafting in EQ2 is less boring because it's a mini-game. You have to be active during crafting; you can't just set it and forget it. You can also earn special rewards such as city tokens to use for buying items at the city festivals. And by the time you reach maximum level you will find that you have a couple thousand recipes that you can craft. You can also advance crafting completely independently of your adventuring level, so you could have a character that only crafts if you want, supplied by gathering done by your adventuring character.

8) Diversity. There is a lot more to do in EQ2 than in LotRO. There are the city festivals, world events (including things like going through fairy rings when they open once a month), you can lose hours just decorating your house, you can now rate people's homes and visit the best for ideas, you can do city writs for reputation, you can go out collecting artifacts which you can turn in when you complete the sets. Honestly, I still occasionally stumble across something new to do that I've never experienced before.

9) Expansions. EQ2 has been averaging one major expansion every 9 months. They are all considerably bigger than anything LotRO has put out. And as someone new to the game you're in a lot of luck because should you buy the game you only need to purchase the most recent expansion. ALL earlier content is automatically available to you. They're not afraid to shake the world up a bit either. New quests get introduced even in old level zones. Some old quests go away. Portions of the world might change here and there. It's definitely less static than LotRO. Not by a huge amount, but a bit.

At the end of the day, I do like LotRO. That's why I bought I lifetime sub. But I find myself increasingly bored in that game. EQ2 still finds ways to surprise me. If you can get past the lower graphics quality, it really wins out against LotRO by a mile.

Hope that helps!
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Posted: Aug 25th 2011 2:50PM Birk said

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@aurickle

@Aurickle

Thanks so much for your thoughtful insights there mate...very much appreciated!

I have decided to give EQ2 a try. Cheers!

-Birk
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Posted: Aug 25th 2011 2:59PM Khai mann said

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@Birk

I've played both, I prefer EQ2 by a long shot. The game is more mature, has more content and just is a lot more fun.
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Posted: Aug 25th 2011 1:46PM GrumpyGnome said

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I have played since launch, (although I am currently on a break due to lack of the interwebs), and love it. There is so much to do and see in this game. The revamps have got me chomping at the bit get back.

I have not yet played LOTRO, (but am looking at it for a change), so I cannot compare/contrast the two.

Are there any specific things you are particularly interested in while playing? That might help a bit.

Posted: Aug 25th 2011 2:49PM Birk said

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@Aurickle

Thanks so much for your thoughtful insights there mate...very much appreciated!

I have decided to give EQ2 a try. Cheers!

-Birk
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Posted: Aug 25th 2011 2:58PM Khai mann said

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After updating my client the game doesn't launch anymore.... Any ideas of what might be the problem?

Posted: Aug 25th 2011 3:05PM Unverfied B said

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@Khai mann
I decided to try out EQ2X a few days ago and since today had problems with the client crashing as well. Running as admin seems to fix it [win 7]
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Posted: Aug 25th 2011 3:50PM Khai mann said

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@Unverfied B

Thanks, that did the job :)
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Posted: Aug 25th 2011 4:23PM Seffrid said

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Hugely detailed response aurickle, and I agree entirely with it.

The only thing I would add in LoTRO's favour is that the lore is greatly superior being based on Tolkien, and the epic storyline is unlike anything to be found in EQ2.

I've played both since their respective betas and they're both excellent games in my view. LoTRO has got stronger over time while EQ2 has been progressively dumbed down. I would suggest that no serious fantasy MMO player should fail at least to have a look at them both.

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