Thursday, August 19, 2010

GU#57, The Fallout

I’m not sure if it’s because I use Profit Reborn and only had to do a tiny bit of juggling last night when I logged in to EQ2 after Game Update #57, but I really couldn’t believe the amount of whining about the new UI in channel 1-9 on AB server. Of course there were a few who seemed to like it and just got on with it, but most of the people voicing their opinions in channels it seemed they did not like the new UI at all. I can’t comment because I haven’t seen it or tried to live with it.

Normally when they change anything in game there’s the usual crew from the ‘I Fear Change’ consortium who will object and whine just because they like to. But last night there was a huge amount of people complaining about it. Thing is, although they were moaning about the change, not once did anyone actually pinpoint what they didn’t like about it, just that they disliked the new UI. So I’m none the wiser. I’ve been trying to think how bad the new UI must be for so many to complain so vocally about it. I might disable my profit after raiding tonight just to see what everyone is going on about and if their moans are justified.

There has been further discontent amongst EQ2 ‘fast levellers’ with a sneaky stealth fix to XP gain. The community seems to be kicking off about it. Check that out here. What I don’t get, especially after reading Feldons excellent break down about XP gain and XP bonuses here at The EQ2 Wire in a post about the same thing is why people are moaning. I guess the key is, it is about who is moaning. Now I power level toons on occasion, but I have never ever used Refer a Friend and the resultant 200% xp bonus. Part of the reason is I’m already happy with the speed that I level when powering. I don’t need the RaF bonus, because if I did, I’m pretty sure I would miss a crap load of content that I enjoy and is part of the fun of going back to level a toon. Yeah, I may want to level quicker than normal, but not at light speed. I have never   power levelled a toon because I need one at max right now, I only power level generally through content I  dislike or have done a thousand times. So I guess my point is this doesn’t really affect me.

Aside from that though, although I understand the need sometimes to get a power levelled toon, say if you have a key member leave your raid force and cannot get a replacement. But generally, the need to level that fast is probably down to laziness and a mixture of need to be at max level against boredom of having already done the previous content. It’s just that this is not really the way I do things. I get much more satisfaction from doing things properly, kinda.

Overall, if the fix the SoE guys put in was to help maintain the levelling curve as it should be, then I respect the decision. One thing I do disagree with that SoE have said, is that they have used the fix, to fix an exploit. I think it’s wrong to call it an exploit when they have been aware of it for so long and done nothing about it. A bug, an unfixed coding error, whatever. But to call it an exploit, puts the blame back at the feet of those using the RaF system to level amongst other XP gain items/potions. The people using RaF XP bonus to level, are not exploiting. They are using a tool provided by the devs. A well known tool. A tool that everyone knew about. Yup the Devs made a mistake as to how the XP is calculated and how it stacks, but that’s not the players fault, and let’s face it, no one has been particularly underhand when using the system or tried to hide it, they have just used what SoE provided. Fix the issue, yeah. But don’t say it’s an exploit.

They did the same way back when there was the issue with the Thuuga quest item issue. But the difference here is that as a player, using a game weakness to obtain another quest reward from a quest giver when you have already had one, in my eyes is quite an obvious dishonest thing to do. As someone who had levelled a toon up to the point where you would be doing the Thuuga questline, you should know by that point that using a game quirk to get two legendary quest rewards would be wrong. Yup, it’s ok to call that one an exploit. But seriously, with the RaF XP gain thing no one thought they were doing anything wrong. It was generally accepted that this was how SoE wanted it to work. That’s not an exploit. That’s the Devs getting it wrong then moaning to their bosses that players are actually using the dodgy system they put in place. What did they expect to happen? No one to use it or come forth to state “This is simply not fair. I have gained more XP than my guildies for the last week. It’s not fair on them or me”. With things like that, it’s impossible for the player base to know if that is what SoE actually intended or not when they did the programming. I have laboured the point enough. Not an exploit, but probably best that it’s gone anyhow. Let’s keep things balanced if we can, I mean other areas of the game are so unbalanced in parts let’s not support further areas of unbalance like crazy XP gain that ruins the levelling curve.

On a final note, I know if I was a dev I would be fuming mad that peeps wanted to zoom through all the fantastic content I have lovingly created without stopping to take a fresh or indeed nostalgic look around. Lucky I’m not a dev then coz we’d have XP deficit weekends, or ‘you must run Firemyst Gully untwinked’ weekends.

Be well.

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