Transcription of Q&A from Wayback Wednesday Episode 9 (Albion Thidranki)

grak_alb_thid

Last night Rob aka Grakulen streamed Episode 9 of Wayback Wednesday and featured him playing RvR in Thidranki the level 20-24 Battleground on an Albion ReaverTalal Saad joined him and answered community questions and some free 30 day timecards were given out in the stream.

The next episode will be in Molvik playing for the realm of Albion on February 13, 2013 for those in the level 35-39 range.

(Update) The event date is now February 20, 2013


Participants

  • Rob – Host of MMORPG.com’s Wayback Wednesday show
  • Talal Saad – DAoC Producer

News

Patch 1.114

Will be delayed by a few weeks, there will be some server maintenance in January and will push back the patch date to late January, Early February.

Changes

  • Fixing vulnerabilities and issues with Labyrinth
  • Endurance bug fix
  • Early hours of the morning connectivity issues that looks like it will be resolved in the server maintainance.
  • Class balance changes Warlock, Reaver and Mauler.

Mordred Transfers

Scheduled for early to mid February.


Stream


Questions

Players could use a new server interface, anything for simplifying the process of switching between servers?

If you recall the last segment we had a couple of questions that we asked Card to sit on until the next segment, that required some input from our engineer and he’s weighed in on these questions.

This would require either moving the full functionality of the login client into the game client, or adding the login client server list to the character select. It’s certainly something to investigate if it becomes a priority.

Limited resources, something as significant as revamping the entire login process isn’t a small task.

How much of the playerbase would this benefit, and how much of a benefit would it be? Currently it’s a frustration and annoyance having to log out from your client to switch servers. I empathize  I have to do it as well and would love personally to see a more modern more streamlined login process. At least where you can log out to a server select screen without having to switch out of the game but it’s not currently on the schedule for a revamp.

Any housing upgrades in the foreseeable future? better merchant interfaces, filtering options, capped merchants or being able to see what has been sold from your merchant?

Yes, it’s something we’d like to update, but there are no specific plans to do it in any upcoming patch. However there is an outline for how we intend to improve the housing, at least the market explorer interface and being able to purchase items across servers, and possibly create market explorers outside of housing.

Filtering options for bonus level and capped merchants, is also part of the attention they want to give to housing. They would like to simply the server feature. They have started planning.

What can be done about plat caps?

Plat caps are not likely to change, the money issue is years of inflation in the player based economy, to gold farming and inflation in general. Conventional wisdom says the game needs more money sinks and not higher caps, higher caps would cause more gold farming and inflation.

So if they can reign in the current causes of inflation and add more money sinks, cooler features that players can spend their money on. People have too much money.

What developments will be implemented with the campaign or what kind of events do you see in the future?

Have a stable of events to choose from, yesterday the Midwinter event finished. Next is seasonal changes for Valentines day. Then Spring time events.

New events, they can’t say they have anything specific scheduled. However they are open to suggestions. Kai used to run events on EU servers, and they well designed and thought out, and they may be coming to US servers.

Nearsight in low-level battlegrounds

Working on something near to a cure or reduction to nearsight range.

To Grak, how have you found your experience with Dark Age?

There are a lot of things that games dont do anymore, has to do with the way people play, that Dark Age still does. Very specific roles that characters fill within groups. DPS, Tank, Healer, or GW2 where you are jack of all trades, in DAoC you have very specific classes.

Expansion?

No, discussed, but not in public. Benefits and riskes vs reward and limitations on resources. Right now there is plenty of content that can be improved upon and don’t believe they need to add any more.

When can we expect a new re-enlistment campaign?

We’re looking at March / April time. Could come sooner but no later than March / April.

As a returning player it was great to get my house deed back, but what do I do with the plat coins

Sell to a NPC merchant

Could realm pride reward players a RP bonus for playing one realm?

Talked about realm loyalty bonuses at great length, difficult question to answer, and subject to tackle. Not just rewarding players for realm loyalty but penalizing players for wanting to play the whole game.

A lot of people who feel strongly about realm pride which is great. Talked about solutions, and they’ve created a plan for this, but it isn’t ready yet. They want to make sure everyone is rewarded instead of penalized.

Is there ever going to be a graphics engine overhaul, or something to make it more visually appealing?

No, with catacombs they had a significant texture upgrades and character models, and recently a few years ago there were further upgrades such as new frontiers and dragon zones. At this time they are not considering modernizing the graphics at this time.

It is subjective but he thinks it is a beautiful game.

Is there any way that we can pay money or do in-game quests to extend vaults?

That is an engineering and resource traps that they can’t fall into right now. With 1.114 a few things will ease the problems with limited space. Doesn’t involve vaults, but looks at no-trade items and stacking items.

Could you rework legendary weapons so they are legendary and live up to their name?

Yes, absolutely, it’s within the scope of feasible development. Not in next patch, but there are plans for 1.115 (no timeframe).

5 year old account and still don’t have the Elder title

Take it up with the billing account, they can advise you how long you have to wait to reach that title.

How would you say your time is divided up between new, returning and current players?

Determining who among the potential players requires some love, spent the better part of a year redesigning the new user journey making it more paletable. In that time, some class balance changes were made, a great deal of time was taken away from current established players and game content. So the last 6-8 months have been spent giving love to end-game users.

They want to see new players come in and embrace dark age, it is going to be divided based on how much theyve given previous demographics attention.

Ideally they to give everyone something.

In order to save inventory space, is it possible to remove teleport items and grant the players as abilities?

Yes it is possible, we’ve discussed it, and would require certain depth of engineering that they would have to feel comfortable with. Not on the cards currently, but they did determine what it would require, and is in the category of feasible.

Do you have any intentions of opening up any additional race / class combinations?

Absolutely, if it is something players are requested and if it doesn’t conflict too severely with the lore of the game, and create a monster of an overpowered class, they are open to it.

Can we reduce the stealth ability based on the number of other stealthers in range?

Sure we could, but they may not be a successful balanced decision. They have discussed the stealth game and where the shortcomings are, and at this point they can’t make a significant change to stealthers.

Recently they changed the way that stealthers of the same realm can see eachother, if you are grouped with a stealther you can see them whilst stealthed. It is important to consider the game from their perspective as well.

Any plans to have a mechanic to show free housing lots?

Yes, they are discussing housing changes and a npc to show free spots is part of that discussion.

Mythic has been working with EA for a long time, is there any strain between the companies. Do they allow you to move with enough agility to keep pace with demands of the game and with games being shut down what do you see the fate of DAoC and what can you do to prevent it?

Does EA provide us with enough agility to keep pace with demand? I would say yes, but there is no ceiling on the amount of resources he wished he had.

Is he upset with the lack of resources? Absolutely not, the game is embraced by a lot of people within EA and the studio. EA’s games president plays the game. Their own senior vice president actually founded the studio.

Towards the 15th anniversary he sees the game going strong, but that’s their responsibility to keep players coming back and the game interesting enough, and the awareness for new people joining the game.

Do you allow transfers of characters between accounts?

Not anymore, not to say they wont again, with changes to the billing system they lost the ability to split accounts. Personally he would like to see the feature back, but at the moment it is not possible, but it is on the list.

Someone asked if old bridge models could be returned, but the answer was probably no due to lack of resources, how difficult is it to change an asset like a bridge?

Old bridge models were changed due to an overwhelming submission of feedback, people didn’t like them. Primarily due to the ladders, so now they have steps. A reversion would be backward leaning, but this is subjective, some people love some people hate.

So yes, there is the resources concern, but there is also feedback.

Low pop server bonuses?

Used to be specific to the free level timer, where a low pop realm had to wait a shorter time to gain a free level. They understand the frustration there can be being on a lower population realm, but the swing between realms is pretty frequent. It is not currently on the schedule to look at. If population imbalance was persistant they would address it.

Do smaller houses have enough points to display trophies?

Subjective based on amount of trophies you have.

If you went free to play would you allow paid race / realm changes?

Yes, if we went free to play it would be something we would monetize.

A lot of guild emblems have been used, can we have new emblems?

There are a large selection, don’t have many art resources to dedicate to new emblems at this time.

Can this old dog learn new tricks? what visions do you have for DAoC?

It’s place in the MMO space at the moment can be considered as stagnent, are we going to dedicate an amount of resources to make large changes into the game? Right now the development drive is to improve existing features.

In the future he dreams that people pour back into the game, but the task is difficult, keeping people happy and changing things are difficult vs potential players would be discouraged to play with dated features. Trying to keep everyone happy and compare it with the feasable scope of development.

UI is often complained about, custom UI’s can be downloaded, Bobs is an amalgamation of notable ones. Can potentially upgrade the UI.

What is the best way for new players to get into the game?

(Rob) With recent changes you can PvE through it, or go through the battlegrounds.

(Talal) They are looking at upgrading the battleground experience. Although there is a line between too much PvE in the RvR experience, there should be danger and be rewarding, and it is great to focus people together to fight.

Will anything be done about lag ghosts?

They are doing some server maintenance in the coming month, they are doing their best to make those changes as smooth as possible, they appreciate feedback with the specific nature of performance problems.

It’s a different experience for everyone, there are lots of variables.

Loot table upgrades

High level encounters are spread around with other high level encounters. Coming in 1.115 or 1.114b, some work has already been done on this.

Will Artifacts be looked at?

Amount of experienced gained from RvR will be increased. They want to incentivize RvR and not force you to PvE.

Infernal Sleeves?

Sooner than the last time you had to wait.

Why was crafting cheapened by allowing characters to craft everything?

It’s about perspective, a lot of players considered it archaic to limit it and it was changed based on feedback. Old crafters before the change received a special title, and crafting is still a necessary part of the game.

Gaheris to Ywain transfer?

On Gaheris you PvE to gain Realm Points, and the amount of RR13s on the server is staggering, the answer is no.

Compared to Mordred where all RPs were gained from PvP.

People want to re-map the escape key

They can take a look at that.

Single Race Re-spec

Some research has been done, and at this point it’s inconclusive as to whether or not it will ever happen, or happen soon. He wants to see it happen, and will give it some more time to investigate. But it’s not something they can be called one way or the other.


Thoughts

A number of questions were asked in this steam, which is good. The pacing of it improved at the start of the stream and then fell off towards the end of it as they looked towards getting questions from the chat room. The pace could have kept up if they continued to ask questions from the list during the quiet times.

As much as I like the idea of showing off gameplay whilst having people ask and answer questions during the stream, for the non US timezones, and for my hands in transcribing it, I would quite like some Q&A done directly by email so I can post them up on the blog.


Episode List

# Name Date Coverage
1 Hibernia Thidranki April 2012 Full transcription Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4
2 Hibernia Molvik May 2012 Video Link
3 Hibernia Cathal Valley June 2012 Video Link
4 Hibernia New Frontiers July 2012 Video Link and Partial Screenshots
5 Midgard Thidranki August 2012 Video Link and Q&A Transcription
6 Midgard Molvik September 2012 No coverage, sorry.
7 Midgard New Frontiers October 2012 No coverage, sorry.
8 Midgard Cathal Valley December 2012 Video Link and Q&A Transcription
9 Albion Thidranki January 2012 This article
10 Albion Molvik Febuary 2012 Future stream
11 Albion Cathal Valley March 2012 Future Stream
12 Albion New Frontiers April 2012 Future Stream

Links

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