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Stickeez

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Everything posted by Stickeez

  1. I think you go first principles/QoL to start: You work on the lag. New map with better construction (key combat locations in the moors sit at the confluence of multiple server lines), and better mechanics (zonewide aura buffs = lag). Outpost ring around the rosy is not fun. Delving boss mechs are interesting (but easily gamed due to force taunt reset). This has to be the first focus, if only to stabilize the playerbase and get an idea of where you stand. Creep classes need actual work. The last minute rejiggering at HD launch needs to bee peeled off like an old bandaid - some of the cooldown reductions were ludicrous, but even ones that aren't "3-second eye rake" levels of silly can be a bit much. Some of the classes - spider included need to be steered back towards their intended role (which is not run and gun tactical DPS DoT class). Being "Locked" into a class role is one of the hallmarks of creepdom, defilers and spiders should not be efficient DPSers. The next piece is to come up with a replacement for rank, something for creeps to grind to serve as that same proverbial gating mechanism. Perhaps this could be a rework of the audacity mechanic as a whole from a seasonal mech to a long term progress mech - though I think there has to be some more interesting unlocks along the way (Cosmetic unlocks actually mattered to people as much as the skill unlocks). For freeps, maybe you just bake the changed audacity mech into the monsterplay debuff or as a passive trait. That at least gets you back closer to what monsterplay WAS.
  2. The opposite of this, actually. Rank gating was a vital balance lever combined with the controlled gain on infamy/renown. FREEPS shouldn't have rank based gating of power - they should be as strong as possible out of the box if geared/traited properly. Creeps should be forced to gain strength through the grinder of combat. That was the "secret sauce" that made the moors what they were. If you took a raid geared freep and a rank 9-10 creep back in late SOA, or rank 10-12 in MoM/SoM they were pretty balanced in combat against each other. There were usually more creeps total, and they had a mobility advantage, but due to the rank mechanisms it worked out. Everyone had fun - even if creepside ranking up was "hard mode". I don't know if it's possible to recreate that within LOTRO now. Store skills didn't help, but really it was the infamy buff stack that did it in. I can remember logging in disgust during the GV camps in early ROR, came back in U10 when the pendulum swung... and there were new players who had hit rank 11 in 2 months. "Easymode" did as much damage to LOTRO's pvp as it did the PVE.
  3. NEVER FORGET: On E, we had a 1.5:1 renown to infamy ratio, and were the ONLY decent sized server with less than 2:1. We were organized, ruthless and meant business. The most realistic pvp beta test ever HAD to be the first Bullroarer event to test Book 7 changes. You had EVERY serious PVPer on E engaged and online with our normal voice comms and usual raid leads. Creeps had the edge on the field due to fire dot. I think you and I both made the mistake of not seeing how that would play out as more people migrated to the BA class.... They got the "balance of it" right, usually at the end of a release cycle. Late SOA was in fact pretty balanced. Late Moria and late Mirkwood also. Post the stat changes in RoI, they've never gotten it right. The dilution of rank broke the rank based balancing of creep power curves, and they can never put that genie back in the bottle. Even though early RoR from a combat standpoint they had found some good parity, the numbers/ease of reaching max power level on creepside ensured that it would be a GV camp on most servers. The problem was never "balance made it boring", it was that the weakness and rough starting experience on creeps were needed to keep the numbers in check.
  4. I'll have to disagree with some of your opinions here. Jalessa did fantastic work. Recall that the official "fixes" to the horrendous book 6, in terms of the monsterplayer side were things like making a few debuffs incurable (fire dot being a mistake!, but the rest made sense), and minor mitigation and morale boosts in the 5-10% range. They were minor changes, really. The fault of the book 6 release was always that of PVE scaling. LI's scaled the damage too wildly, and had to be reigned in. Turbine ended up rescaling mob morale and adjusting the DPS curves on LIs. The biggest challenge to me in figuring out balance issues in the moors was always teasing out what was coming from PVE scaling issues, and what was coming from actual skill interactions in the moors. I believe most of the games "pvp balance" issues are really issues in content scaling on the PVE end (see the Auto-attacking Champ, and game difficulty as a whole). What's caused more issues is trying to change the moors to compensate for these with wildly increasing stat loadout and ability power creep on creeps. Basically, they could have fixed a lot of the post RoI complaints about the moors by doing a better job of keeping player power levels vs content tighter in PVE, which has only gotten worse over time. The "Caretaker - QoL/minor Tweak" approach of Late SoA Orion and Post Moria Jalessa produced the best results, by far, of all the other work done on monsterplay. It also helped that at least before RoI the team did a decent job of addressing difficulty/power curve scaling. **edited to fix a mistake in calling gook 6 book 7**
  5. Both Lord Vorontur and myself are on the 2014 council and post here from time to time. I can't speak to anything about the 2013 council or any action taken against Stavro, who I do not know.
  6. All this talk of UO... The RP community on Great Lakes was very much like the creep community, even though there were very different things driving each group. The similarities are probably why I ended up in each one.
  7. UO had quests from day one launch, but they were generic, sort of the precursor to the radiant quest system in games like Skyrim. Few players ever did them, because the rewards were just a few hundred gold. You would find nobles needing escorting to a major city, or maiden needing rescuing on occassion. I had to chuckle at some of the stuff you mentioned previously about who got to "own" the GM events in LOTRO as I remember the politics of the UO Seer program. You simply couldn't get away with something like that nowadays - guilds getting special items permanently added to the game space, even if they are fantastic RPers, it would get called favoritism and cause a ruckus. On Great Lakes, a large RP village was given vendors and stable masters which eventually fell into the hands of a PK guild. So you were fighting a murderous guild that could unstable dragons (Being red usually restricted where you could stable quite severely due to city guards, so this was a huge advantage). When I got flight form back at burning crusade launch I probably spent a few days just flying around Zangramarsh. Post TBC, their world creation was very good. The vanilla zones didn't hold up like Lotro's mostly have - but they redid them in an expansion to great results (even if that expansion was itself bad).
  8. One thing that I'm VERY sad to not have saved - the community spotlight for Nopain. Aylwen, if you were in QA you HAD to know of Nopain - who was the most helpful person in existence and a testing MACHINE - she would meticulously record values each update for all of her skills in various trait setups across multiple ranks, crazy helpful stuff like that. Back when Bteam were still active, we had a joke about an NPC in Ost Ringdyr named "Pip Diggins" - which is the most porn star sounding hobbit name ever. Smegrat, one of our officers even had a memorized bit he'd do on voice chat everytime we went to Ost describing Pip's various "implements" ... and we'd all have a good chuckle to see what random one Pip would have spawned with. We would go to Ost just to kill pip. Sadly he was removed during changes to NPCs in Ost in I believe HD. But anyways - Nopain managed to call out her "Favorite hobbit npc Pip Diggins" in her community spotlight, in a way that only the Bteamers and E Players would get... it was her finest moment.
  9. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eOABOFVL5g4 Something about drunk aussies, Lotro, and REALISTIC DWARF WAR CRIES.
  10. Yes. They were only spared from my hard drive crash because i had uploaded them to a hosting service to put them on the forums. I lost a lot of great shots of old E. Aussie Friday Primetime from back when it was something worth setting a 5am alarm for, with random silly raids and intense small to mid group sized fights sprinkled in when ANV came to play. I made it into that long burrow right as the group rode up, but didn't screenshot till I saw both rangers had joined the sit in. To this day, no one has ever waited out my entire long burrow, but Bozak (a minstrel on BW) got within 2 minutes with a warden he was Duoing with. Having a 2 second induction on burrow is too short, IMO. I think the 10 second induction balanced how powerful a tool it was, and the times you got away with using it with enemies close by were truly memerable. Too easy to replicate nowadays.
  11. Interesting to read this, then remember some of the interesting bits about companies trying to squeeze more out of the new player experience with frequent updates to it. Reminds me of Eve, which overhauled the new player experience several times as well. Getting the "new players who stick around" metric to go up is a money pit.
  12. That one time when the long burrow induction finishes right as a fellowship rides up with 2 rangers in tow: They waited 8 minutes before giving up, a personal long burrow record that held until very late 2014.
  13. Don't forget that the hobbits are smaller, but the animals are the same size. When you're fencing or walling in a field and not a city, how high the livestock can jump is really what determines how high you need to go.
  14. Speaking of Thanks - I Definitely wanted to thank you for your work with Jalessa back in Late SOA and through MoM. Orion may have laid the groundwork, but Jalessa made the class absolutely sing, and despite many attempts I've never found anything in the MMO space that was as fun and had that great feel as the Weaver. You had to have had a hand in that on some level, so thanks for a lot of great years.
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