Tuesday, September 6, 2016

That's Exquisite! : EQ2

Something odd happened. I was taking the newly ninety-fived Inquisitor for her first mentored-down circuit of Chelsith (still pound for pound the fastest, if not the most thrilling, xp ride I know). I've been on this merry-go-round so often I could... something something amusing metaphor.

Sorry - Chelsith does that to a person. Anyway, I was killing the nameds one by one and each time an Exquisite Chest dropped.

EQ2 has an ascending sequence of increasingly ornate chests whose degree of ornamentation indicates the attractiveness and value of the contents. It's a concept that's widely used in MMOs but EQ2 was the first place I ever saw it.

In fact, I was there in beta when a patch replaced body-looting, familiar from EverQuest, with the intrusive, alien and utterly immersion-breaking ker-plunk of a wooden box popping into existence from...where, exactly? I sent some blistering negative feedback and waited for another patch to revert the idiocy. Like Diana Ross, I'm still waiting.

The long years have trained me to salivate when I see rusted metal. Or at least to feign excitement. It's not like anything that drops in Chelsith is going to be any use to me. Still, Fabled pink retains a little luster and Masters do sell, sometimes.

As I continued my gallop around the circuit, knocking down fishmen and scooping up the loot, two things became apparent. Firstly, every named was up. That is unusual. The big water worms are triggered and always available but all the Yah`Lei bossfish have placeholders and there's always one or two on a smoke break.

Not this time. Okay, can happen.Thing two, though? Not so much.

Every single named in the zone dropped an Exquisite Chest. I have literally never seen that happen. Not even close. About half way round I began to anticipate each kill, expecting a regular Ornate but no, the Exquistes kept dropping all the way round and back to the beginning.

I ended up with no fewer than four Fabled chest pieces, two sets of legs and possibly the best-named Fabled Footwear ever. Plus a club and a selection of jewellery. If I had a level 80 he'd be made - for a few levels at least.

Just when I thought it couldn't get any further over the top, on the very last named - two Exquisite Chests! One from the boss and another from some random grunt. If this was real life I'd be looking around for the hidden camera. Or running out to buy a lottery ticket.

It even occurred to me that maybe there was some special bonus loot deal bundled in with the Labor Day xp (that being the reason I was trundling round Chelsith in the first place) but no - I went and checked and nothing.

So, freak alignment of the rng planets or what? I'm not going around again to check and not just because I'm on Lockout.

It certainly brightened up what could have been a desultory trip. And the Inquisitor dinged 96 and made a good dent in the level. Overall this has been a profitable weekend in Norrath, both flavors of which were enjoying a rain of bonus xp. I didn't play that much but as well as a doing a full level on the EQ2 Inquisitor the Magician over on EQ added nearly 50% onto level 92. Might not sound much but if you solo in either game you'll know different.

I also noticed a couple of oddities about being hoicked all the way from nowhere to 95. DBG cover most of the bases but they forgot about Status. When I went to Chrono down for Chelsith I couldn't pay the Status bill. Fortunately I had a bunch of stuff in my bags to sell for status so it wasn't a problem but you do have to know to do that.

On the plus side, everything everywhere gives you AA, every other mob you kill starts a Lore and Legend or a Language quest and every shiny you spot goes straight into your collection bag. It's like the game loves you. Enjoy it while it lasts.

That'll probably be it for a while. We're promised bonus events all the way down to the Expansion and treats spoil your appetite for regular food. They do taste good, though.

Exquisite, even.


  1. Oh the chests are one of the things I miss from both EQ2 and GW2. Refular body loot, no chests, so when that chest graphic pops up - it adds fuel to the 'just one more pull' drive. I wish WoW and ESO both would steal that mechanic!

    1. Weirdly, EverQuest now has my favorite loot system of any MMO, to the point that I get annoyed with all the others when I go back to them after I've played a few EQ sessions. If anyone's playing EQ and hasn't activated the optional revamped loot window I highly recommend doing so. I was skeptical at first but it took about five minutes for me to decide it was just about the best addition to the game since mercs.

    2. I've played a little of EQ since its now on Steam - will have to look up this new loot window. THanks for the tip.

  2. I assume the doomsday flip-flops are the result of a random item generator? Those are always fun. Diablo III has spit out some real gems, especially for witch doctor gear. My favourites are "Lucky Shrunken Head" (wasn't so lucky for him) and "Reptilian Thing That Should not Be from Beyond."

    1. No, I think they're hand-crafted. EQ2 does have a randomized "Adjective Noun of Present Participle" item generator but I don't think it can spit out anything as idiosyncratic as that.


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