Saturday, 28 March 2015

Eight More Years! : Everquest

Tonight I saw from the log-in screen news as I came to do my Magician's Lesson of the Devoted that the poll results for Everquest's putative Progression Server are up. They make very interesting reading.

Apparently, three of the four options ran neck-and-neck but the overwhelming winner, with double the votes of any of the others, was "Slower Progression". That's basically the same ruleset as the last pair of Prog servers used but with the brakes on.

How hard to press down on the pedal is still up for debate. We now have three more options - "Half Speed", "Maximum Nostalgia" and "Add 50%" which would take eight years, six-and-a-half years and five-and-a-half years respectively to transition from Classic to Current. Longer, actually, unless the last EQ expansion turns out be The Last EQ Expansion.

That's something of a resounding vote of confidence for optimism. It's nice to think the people in charge are planning on those timescales. If the server came up this year, EQ would be a close to a quarter of a century old by the time the first option runs into the buffers.

We now enter a period of consultation in which you can make your feelings known. Anywhere. The Forums, Twitter, Reddit... You could make a sandwich board and walk up and down outside the Daybreak offices I guess. They'll be watching and taking notes.

Eventually - and there's no date - we'll be offered another poll with the final, finalized options. I voted three times in the last poll. and my preferred option still didn't win. Now that it's getting real I might have to use all my seven votes.

Of course, if I play EQ regularly at all it's more likely I'll be playing in the relatively new content I'm just now beginning to explore. My Magician dinged 89 a couple of days ago and 90 is now a very real possibility. That allows me to move with reasonable safety around the outdoor zones of the fifteenth expansion Seeds of Destruction and make some tentative moves into the 16th and 17th, Underfoot and House of Thule.

If the next gen prog server ever becomes more than a discussion paper, though, I'll be there with the rest of the level 1 hordes, fighting ten to a bat in Misty Thicket - whichever ruleset they choose.

3 comments:

  1. Now I'm curious -- do you mind indicating how you did vote, and what you'd like to see if you could just design the progression server to your taste?

    I'm looking forward to it, myself. I never did play any EQ1 (was busy with other things at the time) but I've really enjoyed EQ2. It will be interesting to try it.

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    1. I voted #3 in the first poll - Locked Progression. I liked the idea of a server that stopped at a specific point in time and stayed there. That said, I'm quite happy with the new options. I'll probably vote for Half Speed but any of them will do.

      As for how I'd do it - I'm not sure I'd bother. I prefer EQ as it is in 2015 to how it was in 1999 to 2004, the period generally cited as the Golden Age. One thing I would do is revert the revamped zones to their original state. NOt because I dislike them (apart fro the unforgivable disaster that is Freeport) but just because the difference between the old and the new is jarring.

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    2. "I prefer EQ as it is in 2015 to how it was in 1999 to 2004"...

      That sounds worthy of a post -- totally the opposite of what most writers proclaim.

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