Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Good Things Come: EQ2, GW2, City of Steam

I'm all for deferred gratification but sometimes you can not have too much of a good thing. What with all the the kerfuffle over the Guild Wars 2 pre-purchase I was kind of expecting something more from ArenaNet than tumbleweed rolling past. It seems lax marketing not to have hammered home the advisability of pre-purchase with at least the announcement of a date for a first beta weekend, if not an actual schedule or, god forbid, a release date.

Ravious at Kill Ten Rats says "ArenaNet promises that there will be a Beta Weekend Event at the end of April" in his recent piece (which I linked last time ). He doesn't provide a source for that but he was in the Press Beta so maybe he has seen a schedule. Posters on the Guild Wars 2 Guru forums also seem to take it as read that if there's no beta this weekend there certainly will be next. I have no idea where they are getting any of this from.

Where it all began...
Eager though I am to point my mouse at a GW2 icon I'm happy enough to wait until next weekend because this week is all about the dragons. As I write this, EQ2's servers are all down in preparation for GU63, the Skyshrine update. Kaozz isn't best pleased  about SOE's new Must Be This High To Ride rule, which arguably takes the Theme Park allegory a bit too literally. There's a 280AA gate to pass before Level 90s can begin earning xp towards 91 and adding Prestige Points (not Prestige Classes, which turned out to be a slip of the tongue by now-you-see-her, now-you-don't newish EQ2 Producer Holly "Windstalker" Longdale).

As far as I know (and I have done a modicum of fact-checking up to and including reading some stuff here and there and getting on a Griffin on Test to fly to the first quest hub in Withering Lands) current 90s can access all the new content regardless of how many AAs they don't have. Crafters, of course, don't need any AAs at all to get their two extra levels. Slackers.

I've been slavering for this update for weeks. I hate the phrase "I can't wait" because, well clearly I not only can but will. It's not like I have a time-machine (and if I did I seriously doubt I'd be using it to skip ahead to an EQ2 update, but as usual I digress). Not only do we get a new overland zone to explore and one of my favorite Everquest zones, Skyshrine, to hang out in but we're promised solo/duo versions of group dungeons, something I would very much like to encourage in all MMOs.

And most importantly of all, we get a huge gear upgrade. Yep, we just had one but that was almost a year ago. Nine months then... The solo quest rewards from Withering Lands, obtainable and useable at 90, look to be on a par with current near-top-end raid gear. Welfare epics FTW ! Even without the extra two levels that's going to open up a whole swathe of older content for current non-raiders with max-level characters. Assuming they like to do content the rewards for which are inferior to what they already have, of course. I do, but I'm funny that way.

You want it warmed up, luv?
Another thing I've been waiting on is the City of Steam alpha. No hint yet when it might appear but there have been some very intriguing additions to the website. If you're the sort that loves to absorb lore and background history for worlds that not only don't exist but don't don't exist yet, the COS team is beginning to put some casing over the cogs in the World section, but the part that caught my attention was this on housing.

I didn't even realize City of Steam was going to have housing, so the news that it won't be fully implemented in Alpha didn't come as a crushing disappointment for me. More "Wow! There's housing?!" They hardly need to apologize for not having it fully implemented in Alpha, but then I'm not convinced Mechanist Games know what an alpha test is. I went on at some length  about how impressed I was with their "Sneak Peak" and their version of alpha sounds a lot more like a fairly advanced beta to me. I wish they'd open it up and build it around us rather than try to get it just-so at this stage.

And finally there's that beta with pandas. What's that one called again? Oh yes, Eligium. I've downloaded it twice and installed it several times on various drives and it's never worked. I got as far as patching it last night, which was a first, but my virus checker was convinced it was malware. Getting past that, the client finally attempted to open the game, only to crash repeatedly on the loading screen with a memory error.

Some things are worth waiting for and some aren't. I'll have those 3GB back now, thanks Eligium. I'll be needing them in a week or two when that beta weekend comes around.


  1. If you never managed to get the Eligium beta to work, then you're lucky. It was the second-poorest piece of rubbish I have installed in eight years of playing MMOs (nothing will ever compare to Alganon when it first hit beta).

  2. I got the Alganon newsletter in my mail this morning, as it happens. Their expansion has been delayed, apparently. It's not linked in the newsletter but this Derek Smart Dev blog is well worth a read.


  3. The fact that the next beta event for GW2 was to be at the end of April was an oft-tweeted tease by ANet since pre-purchases were announced; however, lacking an official central news hub means that it can be hard to track where all these bits and pieces are coming from.


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