Tuesday, July 21, 2015

I'm On A Boat! : EQ2

In a surprise move, expected by absolutely no-one, the new EQ2 Timelocked Expansion servers, Deathtoll (PvP) and Stormhold (PvE) launched smoothly, slightly ahead of schedule and without issue today.

Oh, wait, no...that wasn't the surprise...well, yes it was, but...

THIS was the surprise :

Having spent years telling us it was impossible, it turns out the devs have been playing a game of Chinese whispers all along, telling each other the code for the Isle of Refuge had been knitted into socks and could never be unravelled. Finally one of them decided to go and have a look down the back of the sofa and lo and behold, what did he find? A fully working Isle of Refuge complete with all the original quests!

Actually I'm far from sure which "original" version this is. I know it was changed several times but beyond that it's gone all fuzzy. It was a long time ago. I do remember this version, where the wyvern drifts past, sets the ship on fire and incidentally frees the caged goblin but I could swear there was a version with a much longer fight.

One thing that definitely was there right from the start is the execrable voice acting. It really is some of the worst I have ever heard. What those accents are supposed to be Mel Gibson only knows. Whoever's playing Captain Varlos even gets a line reading totally wrong - the seafaring term "swinging the lead" is clearly new to him and presumably to the director. He pronounces "lead" as if it rhymes with "deed" not "dead".  Some sea captain he is. And why does the dwarf refer to himself as "me" all the time, like Superbaby in a 1960s Bob Haney script?

Never mind, they might be the least convincing jolly jack tars on Norrath but somehow they muddle through. My little ratonga shadowknight  is safely ashore, literally and metaphorically wet behind the ears, ready to be indoctrinated in the ways of Lord Lucan D'Lere and introduced to the "culture" of Freeport.

I wonder what the weather's like this time of year?


  1. That is one of my biggest complains and it seems almost worth resubbing to experience again. I've had so much trouble finding the original opening to EQII on the boat with the dragon. I am amazed to see even these screenshots now!

  2. While I'm not playing on this server, I am so, so pleased the Isle is back for you and those who are! Enjoy your walk back in time. <3

  3. I do think the whole nostalgia for the Isle of Refuge does have a lot to do with the way it was removed and the point-blank refusal (until now) of the dev team to countenance its return.

    There was a lengthy cross-over when the IoR was still available as a starting zone at the same time as Greater Faydark and later Neriak/Darklight Woods. My memory is that at that time both GFay and, especially, DLW quickly became the preferred options and IoR fell largely into disuse. It was only when there were attempts to remove it (presumably because hardly anyone was using it) that people began to make a fuss the way that they always do when something like that happens.

    Although I like the aesthetics of IoR, once the option was made available I always preferred to start new characters in Neriak, Gorowyn or Frostfang Sea and leveling up in the zones of Freeport and Qeynos. They are now suggesting IoR will become a starting option in the regular game too but unless they improve the itemization I can't imagine it will replace the existing options in popularity. Even if it does, the other four starting areas all take you to 20 whereas the Isle caps around 9 so it is never going to be a fully comparable alternative.

  4. I never quite understood why the took the Isle out. I was excited to see the surprise of it being added back in for the new servers. Once again, do not listen to these guys about what is not possible. While I think this one was done as a fun surprise they have pulled that line out plenty of times and then all of sudden figured out how to do it. Like adding char slots.

    Anyway, looking forward to giving this a try once I have some free time. I created a char but had to log right out.


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