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Old 09-16-2008, 11:17 PM   #1
Ilucide

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With GU 49, we're changing the level curve. Traditionally, we've only quietly lowered it a little bit with expansions. This will be the first time we've significantly changed it. With that in mind, I'd like to give a little insight into the changes, and some of the additional related things that will be going in to support and enhance them.

Why are we making this change?

Quite simply, we want people to have a better play experience. When you think about levelling through a 10 level spread when we do a level cap raise, there are a lot of other players around. The game feels really alive, and vibrant, because you've got people around you making your experience different every time you log in. Now look at levelling alts, especially in the 20-70 range. It's a completely different experience, especially if you don't have a few friends doing the same thing with you. What we want to do is to get new players into the game faster, give them a better experience while they're levelling up, and at the same time, give some of you folks who've been with us for a long time a chance to level up new characters without spending forever doing it. More on this later. This change to the level curve should also help veteran players choose which content they want to play through rather than always playing the same levelling path every time you create a new character.

We'll also be slightly increasing the drop rate of Adept I spells while solo to compensate for the increased pace of levelling. I'm sure this will also help out all those folks trying to level up transmuting too. The 1-59 item changes that went in recently should also help lower level gear drops be more useful to newer players.

To also try and get people interested in going back and maybe helping new folks a bit, we're increasing the amount of achievement xp earned by the the person mentoring the lower level player. This amount increases as the level difference increases, from 50% at 6-10 levels difference to 300% at a 50% level difference. Now, this achievement xp increase only applies to combat & loot achievement xp, not quest & exploration achievement xp. We don't want to encourage people to find someone to mentor only for a few seconds, we want to encourage mentoring during an adventuring play session. Between 1-5 levels difference, there is no bonus. This is going to be a delicate balance here, because we also want to keep level-appropriate adventuring being the primary source of achievement xp.

So about the curve!

We track a lot of data about how much xp is gained while actively out adventuring (questing, grinding, etc.), which gives us a pretty clear idea of how long the average person takes to get to level 80. That amount of time is 260 hours on average. I'm sure many people can do it faster. I'm sure many people are slower. But that is the average time it's taken over the last 35 days. A large part of that time is the 70-80 period of time. I'm not particularly eager to change that - there are a lot of players in that level range, and there's a lot of content for people to play through. The big sticking point is actually from 20-70, and that's where people will see the most change in time to level. To give you an idea, the old average from 1-70 was ~164 hours. The new time sits at ~100 hours. What we didn't change much were the bookmarks, which is to say, we didn't change the 1-20 experience much, nor did we change the 70-80 a whole lot either.

The last thing I want to talk about is unlocked xp bonuses. This won't be coming in 49 at this point, but they will be in 50. The process is simple - for every character that you have at the current level cap (80 for right now), you will unlock an account-wide +10% xp bonus for your other characters. This bonus will stack for each character you get to the level cap, up to a maximum of 50% bonus.

If you log onto Test to check these changes out, please also keep in mind that Test has an increased rate of experience gain, so Test will always be faster than the real level scheme. Also please try and keep in mind that players more experienced in EQ2's content already level at a vastly increased rate - not just through knowledge of where to go to xp, but also through friends to power level new characters and money for collections. Right now, this change to the curve will result in lower level characters receiving an xp bump based on where they were in the curve. We'll have to see how this shakes out and whether we want to look into changing how it works before 49 hits live.

This is not about making the game "easier", I think very few people find themselves challenged by levelling a character. It's about making it more approachable, getting a better player experience through the mid-levels, and getting newer players to interact with veteran players. =)

Have a good evening, and hope the new stuff on Test treats everyone well!

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Old 09-17-2008, 12:02 AM   #2
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One of the reasons that I've been so opposed to level cap increases is that the leveling of a new character, especially when you have to solo most of the way through is very boring.  I support these changes without exception.  In fact, just to let you know, this very change, changed my mind about even giving Warhammer a try.Being able to try new characters and not have it be a slog to level 80 is a big deal to me and I'm excited to see where the game goes from here.   Great job! SMILEY
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Old 09-17-2008, 12:07 AM   #3
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As a dedicated crafter, I have to ask if this applies to crafting as well.  I feel in my gut that it won't, and of course I know that having a level 80 crafter won't unlock the bonus XP, but I'm just curious.I'm not whining, I'm not begging, merely curious SMILEY
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Old 09-17-2008, 12:15 AM   #4
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Love the change, but it requires one small tweak.
Lower the experience gain from player kills on PvP servers. Thanks!
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Old 09-17-2008, 12:33 AM   #5
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Juntaar wrote:
Love the change, but it requires one small tweak.
Lower the experience gain from player kills on PvP servers. Thanks!
The XP from PvP kills is just fine.  If anything it should be increased.
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Old 09-17-2008, 12:46 AM   #6
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[email protected] wrote:
Juntaar wrote:
Love the change, but it requires one small tweak.
Lower the experience gain from player kills on PvP servers. Thanks!
The XP from PvP kills is just fine.  If anything it should be increased.
Lowering the amount of XP required to level is a psuedo buff to PvP kill XP. We will be getting a higher percentage of a level per kill so less kills per level.
At a minimum PvP kill XP should be lowered to allow the same number of kills per level after the experience update. ie. Keep the % XP gain the same after this change.
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Old 09-17-2008, 12:47 AM   #7
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The idea of "unlocked xp bonuses" sound really cool. I'm deffinitely looking forward to that. But I do have a question about  it. Will there be a way to disable that temporarily? There may be times when I wouldn't want that bonus. For example if I already have a level 80 but I want to play an alt with a friend of mine who does not have a level 80, I'd prefer to keep our experience gain the same so I don't outlevel my friend. I'm assuming this would be possible by using the same command used to disable bonus xp weekend experience, but I'm just asking to be sure.
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Old 09-17-2008, 12:59 AM   #8
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Juntaar wrote:
[email protected] wrote:
Juntaar wrote:
Love the change, but it requires one small tweak.
Lower the experience gain from player kills on PvP servers. Thanks!
The XP from PvP kills is just fine.  If anything it should be increased.
Lowering the amount of XP required to level is a psuedo buff to PvP kill XP. We will be getting a higher percentage of a level per kill so less kills per level.
At a minimum PvP kill XP should be lowered to allow the same number of kills per level after the experience update. ie. Keep the % XP gain the same after this change.
I disagree.  Having experienced players hunting new players is bad for PvP servers.  New players to the server get turned off because they are not effective against players that have turned off Adv XP and are thus stronger for the tier.  I understand it is a game system and you like to use it but it is not healthly for the servers and you should forced to level faster.
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Old 09-17-2008, 01:53 AM   #9
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Ilucide wrote:
...

To also try and get people interested in going back and maybe helping new folks a bit, we're increasing the amount of achievement xp earned by the the person mentoring the lower level player. This amount increases as the level difference increases, from 50% at 6-10 levels difference to 300% at a 50% level difference. Now, this achievement xp increase only applies to combat & loot achievement xp, not quest & exploration achievement xp. We don't want to encourage people to find someone to mentor only for a few seconds, we want to encourage mentoring during an adventuring play session. Between 1-5 levels difference, there is no bonus. This is going to be a delicate balance here, because we also want to keep level-appropriate adventuring being the primary source of achievement xp.

...

I'm confused about this section.  How is this going to work?  Does it still only apply to normal AAxp things (killing nameds, looting status items, etc) or is it now, I mentor and a % of whatever regular xp goes to my AAxp?  If it's the former, what if I've already cleared that zone of AAxp way way back.  Will I now be getting additional AAxp if the person I'm mentoring gets AAxp?
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Old 09-17-2008, 01:56 AM   #10
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I take it to mean your conversion of xp > aa xp that happend while at level cap will happend much more rapidly while mentored.
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Old 09-17-2008, 03:07 AM   #11
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1-70 in 100 hours? So all that 1-70 content is there for what exactly? You push people through the tiers even faster and that somehow helps lower level peeps find someone to group with? I shudder to think of the condition that a new player will find himself 100 hours later sitting at 70 and sincerely hope I never have to group with one.  They will be in such bad shape at 70 that you will be forced to dumb down T8 content even more than it already is. The stupefication of EQ2 continues unabated.

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Old 09-17-2008, 03:25 AM   #12
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Will we have the option to opt out of the bonus xp for every lvl 80 character we have?  I actually enjoy the low-mid level content and already have problems with outleveling zones before I've experienced everything available.  Rushing all my chars to end-game and then rushing the next ones to end game even faster is not my idea of a good time.
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Old 09-17-2008, 03:26 AM   #13
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I have to say that this change is a concern. I've always believed that the journey was the fun with games such as EQII. I don't feel the need to rush to the "end." A lot of work has gone on over the years to make and improve the zones one plays as they level. I see too many players, who in my humble opinion, rush their way to the "end game," skipping over much of the fun on the way to get to where ... the end?Personally, there isn't much content that I enjoy at the "end" at the moment. I'm enjoying leveling alts in areas that seemed to pass too quick the first two times to 80. If the journey is going to be even faster, it will take some of the fun of experiencing the content away from me. So far, I haven't managed to get through all the quests in any level before outgrowing them, with the exception of heroic type quests and some of the higher level quests added since ROK.I have to ask why you're trying to put the rush on? Why not work on making the journey more fun and encouraging people to play the entire game and not just skip ahead to the end. It seems you want us all to be like little kids who want the year to go quickly so we can have Christmas. As you age, you realize that time passes fast enough and prefer to slow things down so you have more time to enjoy what life has to offer. Seems to me, it would be cool to encourage us to slow things down to enjoy what the game has to offer instead of encouraging us to rush ahead to the end, creating a never-ending need to constantly refresh the "end of the game."I'm just curious about what you're thinking. I can't quite grasp the idea that by allowing new players to hurry and catch up, they'll find more people to play with. If I'm reading right that is the jest of all this coupled with encouraging "old timers" to go mentor and help them level up even quicker.What's the rush? The roses smell much sweeter when you take the time for a good long sniff. SMILEY
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Old 09-17-2008, 06:02 AM   #14
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I'm in agreement with those that think that rushing to the end is a bad idea.  Not only does it waste content but it also means players are not getting the experience they need.If this is simply being brought in so that existing players can quickly level alts then find another method (and yes, I know I am being extremely cynical), because otherwise we are going to end up with a whole load of players who have no clue about their class because they haven't had a proper chance to play it (and we have enough of these types of players already).  They'll also be less need for new players to reach the end game if all existing players can rush alts though and therefore fill all the raid gaps themselves!If you only change the experience gained for kills, then this may be okay as players have control over that (i.e. there's a way to turn it on and off) but if you change it for every method of experience gain then you are forcing players who want to experience the content to either miss it or do it when grey (which is not exactly ideal).I level lock all of my alts because they already out-level the content too quickly, giving them even more xp will make the situation even worse.  I can put up with doing some of the quests while gray and know the content well enough to know if a quest is in a quest line or not etc., but that's not going to be the case for a new player.Are you sure that this change is so good for the future of this game?  Is the future to be: all players solo until they are at the cap, then group and raid for drops.  Exactly how good are those players going to be in groups and raids if your intentions are for levels 1-79 to be solo?While I'm on my soapbox I may as well ask a question that's been bugging me: Why is it that  so many players head to the "end game" and repeat the same dungeons etc. day after day, week after week, month after month but they moan if they are asked to revisit a bit of content that someone else of a lower level needs help with?
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Old 09-17-2008, 06:09 AM   #15
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[email protected] wrote:

As a dedicated crafter, I have to ask if this applies to crafting as well.  I feel in my gut that it won't, and of course I know that having a level 80 crafter won't unlock the bonus XP, but I'm just curious.I'm not whining, I'm not begging, merely curious SMILEY

I'm also curious on that point, so if you could tell us if, yes or no, we will be affected ?

As someone who, more or less, was never able to level past T3 for a huge % of my chars (15 chars, one T8 in 3 years, 2 T5, 2 T4 and all others between level 11 and 30), I appreciate this change. I love mid-levels, but I... well, I can't take the time to bash mobs, even for quests, to level. It's boring. So, leveling faster may be a nice change, as far as I can still lock my xp if I don't want to.

I would love to see a /toggle_bonusxp off or something like that to shut down the bonus gained from level 80 chars for those who desire it.

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Old 09-17-2008, 08:03 AM   #16
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Ilucide wrote:
......

This is not about making the game "easier", I think very few people find themselves challenged by levelling a character. It's about making it more approachable, getting a better player experience through the mid-levels, and getting newer players to interact with veteran players. =)

Have a good evening, and hope the new stuff on Test treats everyone well!

What you make is decrease the value of everything you get from Tier 3-7. Why does nobody really care if he has only app1 spells in tier1 or app4 in tier2? Its because these levels just fly over and its not worth the money or time to hunt better spells or gear.What you did now again is decrease the time you stay in a tier while leveling. So why should I buy for example MC gear/spells when I'm only be a couple of hours in these tiers? Why have these tiers actually when all what count is to get to the level limit as fast you can? Why revamp old zones, when these zones last only for a couple of hours? I actually started to gear my toon in full MC gear and spells when he reached tier5, now its probably not worth the money/time until t7 or t8.If you push the players every couple months faster to the endgame, you should actually stop revamping tier 1-7 zones and only make new t8 zones. Everything else is wasted time and money.So many nice questlines which are just a waste of time because when you get the item or are in the middle of the quest line they are green or grey. At least make all the quest raid bosses heroic ones.To put a exp bonus in for people who allready have L80 toons is nice and a good thing. But to push every new player to the endgame as fast as possible, sound strange. Why increase the level cap? Does it today really take longer to level from 1-80 then it took at release to level from 1-50? With every release you just decrease the time people stay in tiers and have fun with questlines which are not grey and destroy the value of a lot of gear and heroic questlines. And this only for 1 week of leveling grind for the raid people?With every level increase and faster leveling in the lower zones you destroy a lot of fun in the lower tiers!
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Old 09-17-2008, 08:34 AM   #17
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Qandor wrote:

1-70 in 100 hours? So all that 1-70 content is there for what exactly? You push people through the tiers even faster and that somehow helps lower level peeps find someone to group with? I shudder to think of the condition that a new player will find himself 100 hours later sitting at 70 and sincerely hope I never have to group with one.  They will be in such bad shape at 70 that you will be forced to dumb down T8 content even more than it already is. The stupefication of EQ2 continues unabated.

Umm... No MMO is so hard that you can't get the hang of it in 100 hours.  Hyperbole FTL!  SMILEY
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Old 09-17-2008, 08:42 AM   #18
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Ok... so if you find yourself leveling too fast, why not turn off adventure exp?As far as the probelm of new folks soloing to 70 that much faster and not knowing what their role in group/raid situations will be?  That doesn't really make much sense to me either, I mean if the problem is finding a group in those tiers then chances are you're mostly soloing..  so if it takes you 4 months to solo to lvl 70 instead of 5... how is that going to make you better in a group? 
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Old 09-17-2008, 09:14 AM   #19
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Before I make up my mind if these are good changes or not, i think we need some clarification on a few things.

Will we be getting additional xp for kills, quests, locations? (and if so, which) or are you just lowering the amount of xp required to get through the levels?

This is an important point as it determines wether it is possible to level at the old rate by turning off combat xp.

Will we be able to run off the +10% bonuses to one or all of our characters?

 Will these we get the extra 10% bonuses just from lvl 80 adventurers or from level 80 crafters too?

What I am getting at is I really think everyone should have the option of leveling at the current rate or the new, faster, rate.

I completely agree that the sub-70 zones can be ghost towns. But also feel that increasing the speed that you progress through them is not going to help.

For me, just helping friends is enough reason to return to the lower level zones, but, I feel the additional aa bonuses isnt going to be enough for most. Especially once the new expansion has been out for a month or two and most of the current level 80's have AA maxed.

The main thing that is required is to bring more new players in. I dont have any figures but the recent promotions dont seem to have been a huge success. Yes, lots of people returned, but after their free-time ran out, the vast majority seem to have left.

My own belief is that EQ2 needs to be marketed a lot better and needs to be on the shelves in stores, but there are plenty of other threads on this subject and its probably best to discuss this there.

 We need more reasons for high level players to go back and re-visit lower level zones, but this also needs to be done with care.

Maybe quests that scale to players levels but require kills from non-grey mobs.

Maybe the 'shard' system thats coming with tSO could incorporate lower tier zones, but in a way that higher levels need to be mentored down to the appropriate level.

One thing that definetly needs to be looked into is the overpowered nature of mentoring.

Anyone that has mentored down knows that their character is way , way more powerfull than they should be at the mentored level.

Something needs to be done to bring mentored characters down to the correct strength if you wish to have more mentors running about

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Old 09-17-2008, 09:16 AM   #20
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Hey do these boni also apply to tradeskill experience if you have characters that are on the level cap of their selected tradeskill?
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Old 09-17-2008, 09:43 AM   #21
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Good question!
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Old 09-17-2008, 10:15 AM   #22
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As a long time finger waggling warlock, I decided to try a plate type tank class about a year ago.  I found that tanking takes a lot of practice and there are certain mobs that need to be dealt with individually.  It litterally took me till level 60ish to really get the hang of it, and when I thought I had it, RoK popped up and really threw me for a loop. 

My point here is that even though I've been playing this game for a few years, I NEEDED those slow experience gaining levels between 50-70 to really get a good feel for my character.  If this change is going to make it quicker for people to level, I feel sorry for some of these new players that have a hard time as it is trying to be the best that their character can be.

I, for one KNOW that you need the practice and experience no matter which character class you choose.  This is going to kill the market as well.  All those crafters that make a living on the tier 3 to tier 6 range are not going to be making squat.  Why spend all of your hard earned gold/plat on items you won't be using for half as long?  Mastercrafted gear is expensive as it is, unless you know some crafters, but this soon will drop in price because no one will be spending the time to make it or buy it.

Masters and Adept 3's will also not be as desirable because people will know that they can just save up for their "end game" spells and items.  I love the 20-70 range and prefer to take my time while exploring different areas.  I shouldn't have to turn my adventure XP off in order to fully enjoy it. 

 Just my 3 cents' worth

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Old 09-17-2008, 10:18 AM   #23
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Really happy about this change, have wanted something like it for a long time.Question:What effect to leveling would the following conditions have for a level 21 character.1. Mentored by 5 level 80s2. Drinks a bonus + 55% XP potion3. 100% Vitality4. In a dungeon5. On a bonus XP weekend6. Using the new XP curveSo what is my mob kill bonus, quest turn in bonus, disco bonus under these circumstances?
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Old 09-17-2008, 10:39 AM   #24
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 I would like to make a formal request to make our experience gain something we can /toggle.

The idea has merit for certain playstyles but some of us would rather have the choice to enjoy our time in game without feeling we are being forced to lvl cap.

I have concerns with the direction the game is taking for long term playability.

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Old 09-17-2008, 10:40 AM   #25
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i dont see this as a big change as you can go from 1 to 80 in under a 100 hrs now, 70 to 80 taking the bigest portion(36-46 hrs). The extra bonus for having max lvl characters is cool. Can we do that with tradeskilling too, every max crafter nets you bonus up to 50% for crafting - seems only fair.
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Old 09-17-2008, 10:42 AM   #26
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you can disable adven xp, are you asking for quest xp toggle?because if thats what you want you might want to be clearer as someone might read what you posted as you want adven xp toggle which is already in game.
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Old 09-17-2008, 10:54 AM   #27
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I just returned to the game after a 6 month absence and I have been loving every minute of it. I play 7 characters spread from tier 3 to tier 7 with almost all of them being tier 7/8 crafters.

 When I read the update notes suddenly all of my newfound excitment for the game just went away and I find myself thinking what is the point to playing if it is so easy to get to level cap? (which I hate by the way, I almost quit the game when I hit 50 on my main)

I have played the game since it went live (minus the absence) and it seems with every expansion the lower tiers suddenly become easier to get through. I remember taking a couple weeks to get to level 20 on my ranger and actually enjoying antonica and stormhold. There isnt even a point to go there anymore. Heck I can be level 20 in a few hours on a new toon now if I want. This made me ignore all spell/armor upgrades until level 20....so now what? should we ignore everything until level 70? Why not just put in an option at character creation that allows you to pick the level you want to start at? The game is already full of people at level 80 that have no clue how to play and have never even seen lower level content.

What can be the purpose of a change like this? Is it to cheapen the experience? If people want to play a game without learning it let them go play WoW. EQ2 has already been dumbed down enough and now you want to encourage ignorance! I guess I was mistaken when I thought the game was going in the correct direction, maybe I should reconsider my return to Norrath. 

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Old 09-17-2008, 10:55 AM   #28
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KillSlow wrote:
you can disable adven xp, are you asking for quest xp toggle?because if thats what you want you might want to be clearer as someone might read what you posted as you want adven xp toggle which is already in game.

No not just adv exp.

If I understand the changes it will be giving more xp for everything in low and mid tier zones. Its already to fast to level even with adv xp off.

I want a choice thats all.

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But seriously, you're the kind of guy that zones into gears without a healer and spends the whole match talking about the fact there isn't a healer instead of contributing. I hate you, and everyone like you that plays this game. Please spend less time whining and more time winning, it contributes to the general growth of the game and makes gameplay more enjoyable for all.

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Old 09-17-2008, 10:56 AM   #29
Powers

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[email protected] wrote:
Ok... so if you find yourself leveling too fast, why not turn off adventure exp?
I have adventure XP off for all of my characters, and they still outlevel quest after quest after quest.I've been playing since day one, and my highest level character is 46.  Is this a problem for SOE?  It feels like they're saying to me "You're levelling too slowly!  Here, have some extra XP and go faster!  Have some XP potions!  Have some bonus XP weekends!  Earn XP, you're spending too much time enjoying the content we wrote!"I don't know about other servers, but on Antonia Bayle there is rarely a problem finding characters to adventure with.  Maybe during the most off-peak hours, but most of the time zones are loaded with plenty of players.  Everyone has alts, everyone needs groups, and there are lots of new players, so there's no problem.Ah, new players.  Accelerating XP gain for experienced players on alts makes sense.  Forcing new players to outlevel content they've never seen before makes no sense.  That sounds like something Blizzard would do (they of the "we've already got enough 1-50 content, we're only going to make new content for high levels now" philosophy).Some of us are enjoying all this content you designed, SOE.  Please don't force us through it faster than you already are!  PLEASE!  I'm really begging you here: I don't want to level faster!Powers  &8^]
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Old 09-17-2008, 11:09 AM   #30
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Ack!  Did I read the GU49 forum notes correctly that we're being forced to power level our characters now?  "The experience requirements for levels have been SIGNIFICANTLY lowered primarily affecting the 20 thru 70 level range."  Why not just remove levels 20 to 70 completely if nobody likes to level in them?  Or maybe make it that players can choose to start off automatically say at level 70.  If I wanted power leveling and didn't care about levels 1 to 79, I would have paid an Asian to get me to level 80 in 8-10 days.  Guess now with this lower experience requirements, which would now be completed in 5 days.

Can you PLEASE add an option into the UI to toggle between regular experience or accelerated experience.  Or enhance the "Combat Experience Disabled" feature to exclude all experience from combat, quests, zone discoveries (but not any of the achievement points) so that we can decide when we want to earn experience.  This accelerated leveling is going to make players grey out zones and mobs too quickly if they're hoping to explore every nook'n'cranny and enjoy what each zone and level has to offer.  That nice fabled item one received will in a few hours be useless due to this power leveling.  I'm the type of player that enjoys exploring and questing and appreciates the effort and time that the designers and developers have put into numerous zones.  Well, I guess their work and creativity is no longer appreciated by SOE.

Let's not rush things here, as in RL we don't want our kids to become adults before they've had a chance to cherish their childhood.  Zones are changing so what may have been one way for a player's character, may no longer be the same for your alts.  As an example, the recent changes to Commonlands, quests in Freeport / Qeynos, Nek Forest and not to mention the latest... Everfrost.  Their not fun when grey'd out or you mentor down with a uber T8 toon; things just don't scale down right.

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