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Public Test Server Q&A, 7/30/10

July 31, 2010

So whenever we see a new patch loaded onto the Public Test Server, it usually means there’s some Developer Q&As that will be going on as well in the Bioware Mythic Ventrilo server.  This time it was scheduled during the day before the Stability Test on Friday and had participants from both the US and the EU.

These Q&A sessions tend to last a while as there are usually anywhere from 50-150 players asking their allotted question and getting either an answer, “no comment”, or getting made fun of for trolling.  Because of that length, we usually only see extremely cut-down, paraphrased write-ups of these that sometimes completely change the answers that were actually given.  Always good times.  However, this time around, Bruglir captured an audio recording and posted it on his blog. As I did for the last Q&A, I made a transcript for those who like their WAR info in readable format.

Shameless Reminder: If you haven’t been coming to these sessions, don’t use this as an excuse not to bother.  It is always better to be there in person.  Not just to hear the live responses, but more importantly to ask your own questions.  It is rare, in my experience with MMOs, to have the Development team available like this to EVERYONE to be able to ask questions.  You should all be attending these just to take advantage of that singular aspect alone, not to mention getting to preview what’s coming to the Live servers soon.  Keep your eyes on the Herald to see when they’ll be holding their next Q&A and be sure to attend if you have questions you don’t think others have been asking.

(There will be another PTS event next week!  Make sure to keep your eyes on the Herald for time/date/vent info.)



Public Test Server Q&A, 7/30/10

For those that haven’t been to one of these, there are certain rules as to how this all goes down.

  • Each player gets one question.
  • The question is not asked in Vent, it’s posted in your Comment.  So be specific and concise.  General questions get politically correct answers, so avoid those so as not to waste your question.
  • Troll questions are ignored and/or made fun of.
  • If certain topics are off-limits, it’s usually stated up front.  This is rare, but happens in regards to things that it’s obvious they can’t comment on at this time.
  • Unless they ask you for clarification, this isn’t the forum for a conversation about something due to the number of people that have questions they want answered and the nature of Vent.
  • Attempts to sneak in multiple questions by changing your Vent name can get you booted from the Q&A, so don’t bother.
  • Questions outside the scope of the Developers present tend to get vague/pc answers, so it’s usually better to tailor your question to who is in attendance if you want as in-depth a response as possible.
  • Questions about Customer Service are not answered as there has never been a CS representative present.
  • Andy reads off the question from your comment and then either he or one of the Developers present answers it as best they can.

Note:  This is not a complete, literal transcription like I usually do with interviews simply because of the nature of the Q&A.  Even the recorded version doesn’t necessarily include everything since some has to be read directly from the Vent comments.  Another good reason to show up for these.

And away we go…

Q – Is there a possibility that we will have a permanent addition of a 6v6 scenario?

Carrie –  So the answer is yes.  It’s completely a possibility.  We have been talking about revisiting the rotation based on the metrics we’ve been pulling and looking at some of the favorite Weekend Warfronts.  If this goes over well and we decide that it is a bonus to the rotation, then I suspect you’ll see it permanently.  (GG –  The Eternal Citadel is a new 6v6 scenario that is being tested for 1.3.6 right now.)

Q – When will the next Live Event happen that gives a Live Event Slot item happen?

Mike – We did that today.  So…today.  Weekend Warfronts will have one now.  Every Career has a defensive option and an offensive option.  In the case of healers, they also have a healer option.  It will last for five days.  The Event Slot items will never be permanent, they will always be temporary.  There are various ranks for them.  You get a chest from the Weekend Warfront and when you interact with the chest…you basically have a chance to get either an Uncommon, Rare or Very Rare version of the Event Slot item.  Of course, as it goes up in rarity, it’s more powerful.

Q – Do you have any plans to make improvements to non-set items?

Nate – To a certain degree, set items are always going to be better than non-set items just because they are a set and that’s the reward for wearing the whole set.  But we certainly want to improve more things.  We started now with the Sovereign set because it’s kind of the most signature armor in the game and the best place for us to really start.  We absolutely plan to continue making changes and improvements.

Q – Do you have plans for the Fortresses?

Mike – We’re looking at them, but it’s nothing immediate that we’re prepared to discuss.

Q – Any plans for separating the scenarios for pre-mades and PuGs?

Carrie – So we’ve looked at that and we continue to look at that.  The balance is always not to dilute the population so much that scenarios aren’t popping anymore.  That being said, we’ve been talking and kind of shooting around some prioritization ideas about “OK, so fine.  We’re not going to NOT pop a scenario, but we’re going to see about maybe prioritizing skill levels together and pre-made vs. PuG.”  But that’s still in development.

Q – Do you plan on fixing the door bug in Tomb of the Vulture Lord?  (Gates remain closed at times after a wipe.)

Keaven – We are definitely aware of it and we know why it’s happening.  It’s proving to be a little more complex than I had originally anticipated, but we should have a fix for that pretty soon.

Q – Why are White Lions receiving an undefendable armor debuff while Witch Elves lost an armor debuff in 1.2?

Nate – The changes we made in the past to the Witch Elves were made based on the composite whole of where Witch Elves stood at the time and there were simply things that were too powerful for them at the time.  As we’re looking now, where the game has changed, it seemed like one of the better changes for us to make to bring some more parity between the Careers.  (GG – Class “mirrors” are being given more and more of the same abilities.  See the patch notes for more details.)

Q – Do you have any plans for server transfers for Iron Rock?

Carrie – Um, yes.  But that’s all I can say at this time.  (GG – She’s such a tease.)

Q – How many 1.3.x patches before 1.4?

Carrie – That’s a really good question.  But by telling you that answer, I’m putting myself into a time-frame.  We don’t currently have plans to have another 1.3.x patch before 1.4.  That being said, if the items in 1.4 need more time to mature, that will change.  And before you do the math, that does mean it will probably be a little bit longer than you guys are expecting before the next version.

Q – Are you planning on looking into making melee life-tap healing more viable on a group scale?

Nate – In general, we don’t feel that melee heals and life-tap heals are as effective as they need to be in those situations, but we don’t have any specific plans to share at the moment.

Q – Are you aware of, and working on a fix for, people force-crashing themselves to be able to re-enter Land of the Dead?

Andy – We’re aware of the bug, I can tell you that.  We don’t have an ETA on the fix at the moment.

Q – Do you plan on overhauling the Magus/Engineer mechanic?

Nate – We want to make their pets more impactful and more a regular part of their gameplay.  We don’t have any plans of scrapping them completely and starting over, no.

Q – Are you investigating the parity between Disciple of Khaine and Warrior Priest and other healers specifically in regards to their group heals?

Nate – We know there’s some inequality in the way their group heals work.  The reason it’s set up like that is in an attempt to help them since they’re intended to be up in the front line with melee and taking hits much more often.  Obviously it doesn’t work out to be exactly equal and we’d love it if it was.  It’s certainly something that we’d like to look into in the future.  But I don’t have any specific answer for you right now.

Q – What happened to the Loading Screen Tips from the EU forums?

Andy – We’ve reached out to the GOA Community Team requesting that information so that will definitely be considered as part of the contest.

Q – Are there any plans to fix scenario scores for the second instance of the City Sieges so you no longer see the scores from the previous instance?

Mike – We’re aware of it but don’t have an ETA on the fix though.  I’d have to check with the client engineers.

Q – Do yo plan on looking at Brutality and Monstrosity for Marauders?

Nate – Marauders have, generally-speaking, got a steady stream of improvements for quite a long time now.  There are certainly maybe some particular builds that are performing above or below other particular builds, but I don’t know of any answers on when we’re going to be changing one specific build to be drastically better.  All I can tell you is that we make adjustments as we need to and as we’re able to.

Q – Trans-Gaming has stated on their forums that Linux support for WAR would come after Mac support.  Any updates on that?

Carrie – We don’t plan on supporting Linux.  Sorry.

Q – Will you ever put the Lifeline into Scenarios the same way it is in the City Sieges?

Carrie – Actually, we didn’t go so far as to have Lifeline put into the Scenarios because they end so quickly and you can go back and do further Scenarios.  That being said, it’s something we can explore if it ends up being a problem.

Q – Can you address the perceived imbalance in magic debuffs for Order vs. Destruction?

Steven – I guess the best thing is to say “Sure, through parity between the Realms that should get addressed.”  (GG – I know where you work Steven…)

Q – When will there be another non-Weekend Warfront Live Event?

Mike – They’re coming up.  There’s kind of a lull in the Summer months for the Seasonal Events.  But they are Seasonal, so they’re coming back every year.  The next one will be The Wild Hunt.

Q – Any plans to reduce Tanks damage capability and tweak their utility?

Nate – There have been various concerns that have come up in discussion about how effective a DPS Tank should be, but we don’t have any plans right now to universally change that across the board, no.

Q – What’s the most effective way to report a bug:  Forums or In-Game?

Carrie – The answer is In-Game.  In-Game we have a tool that tells us some information about your character, your location, and other various things.  It’s always helpful for you to give as much detail as possible.  We do track what class you’re replying on and all that, but give as much information about what you think might be contributing to the bug so that we can verify it quickly.  We get a LOT of reports where we don’t have a lot of information so we can’t figure out what they’re trying to say.  So, In-Game definitely.

Q – Any plans to allow higher-Tier characters to earn lower-Tier influence other than wasting a warband slot as a chicken?

Mike – Not at this time.

Q (GG – No clue as it was typed in vent and Andy asked him to rephrase it, but Nate responded a bit anyway, so here you go.)

Nate – You’re asking about Swordmasters…In 1.3.6, so coming up in this patch, you’re getting a new ability that will help you move your Balance around as needed.

Q – Is the Choppa going to get a mirror to Shattered Limbs?

Steven – Actually it looks more like a way to counter Shattered Limbs and right now we haven’t really looked into it.  That particular thing is not mirrored but it’s something we can look into in the future.

Q – Is the progression 25/50/75/100 going to stay as that or will they become 30/60/90 like the others?

Nate – The ones we put in 1.3.6 are going to stay that way for the foreseeable future.  (GG – This mirrors the Ironbreaker progression at 25/50/75/100 bringing more parity to the two Classes.)

Q – Are there plans to extend the CC-immunity buffs to a longer duration or to group more abilities as CC?

Nate – Crowd Control is always going to be a touchy issue and it’s always something we keep an eye on pretty much permanently.  At the moment, we’re fairly happy with the state of Crowd Control on the whole and we don’t have any plans to change the immunities right now.

Q – Do you ever plan on allowing Engineer/Magus pets to scale with gear?

Steven – Like Nate said earlier…it’s something we’ve obviously looked into and we really have nothing right now we can share with anyone.  It’s definitely something we’re looking into.

Q – Any plans for new Races for Destruction or Order in the future?

Carrie – Sorry, I can’t comment on that right now.

Q – Do you plan on changing how quick the Stealth mechanic breaks?

Nate – We’ve actually made a few tweaks to those abilities in 1.3.6 to make them a little more reliable.  After the changes in 1.3.6 it should be significantly easier to get much closer to your target much more often.

Q – Do Disciples of Khaine still have the capability to obtain the Painblade of Anarchy?

Nate – I don’t know off the top of my head.  I’ll make a note and check into it.

Q – Will there ever be parity between the Zealot Action Point proc on ability instead of attack so that it is equal to that of the Rune Priest?

Nate – It’s probably something we’re likely to change in the future, yes.  But I can’t say definitely since it’s not something we have slated at the moment.  But that is a likely change, one way or the other.

Q – What do you think of the Knight of the Blazing Sun ability Shatter when they have the tactic slotted that allows it to remove three blessings at once?

Nate – We know there’s some concerns about that tactic and that ability being a little different from the way it’s set up for all the other Tanks.  It’s something we’ve discussed on and off in terms of a lot of the Shatter-type abilities in general.  Ultimately we’ll probably end up evening it out one way or the other, but I don’t have anything to share right now.

Q – Is the Mythic staff going to Games Day Baltimore and are you having any sort of community get-togethers, like a wine-tasting party?  (GG – This was from Mykiel, obviously.)

Andy – Only if it’s boxed wine…  Yes, we are going to Games Day Baltimore at this point.  Yes, we do plan on doing some kind of community get-together kind of thing.  I’ve been talking to James Casey and James Nichols.  James Nichols will be there for the Community Team.  James Casey will be leading the Dev Team there.  I’ve been talking to them already about what we’ll be doing and there will be more information on the Herald just as soon as we have everything all worked out.

Gaarawarr – Mykiel and I are trying to arrange a WAR player, and Developer if you want to come, trip to Camden Yards the night before Games Day Baltimore.  That Friday night the Orioles are playing the Rangers at home and I think we’re looking at getting a block of seats in the $8-10 range.  So if you’re interested in that, keep an eye on the forums and our blogs for more information.

Andy – Cool.  Also, if you are a current blogger for WAR, please let me know if you’re going to Baltimore Games Day, UK Games Day as well, and I’ll see what I can do to help you out with getting into the convention.

Q – Is the rumor of a Skaven invasion via an Anniversary Live Event true?

Carrie – You know what they say about rumors: totally untrue.  No, I’m just kidding.  That’s a strange rumor.  There may be bits of truth.  There may not be.  (GG – Told you she was a tease.)

Q – Why do we have potions in the game that give more armor than the Engineer/Magus armor buff?  Are these going to become stackable with those buffs?

Nate – There’s no real answer to the why, it’s just kind of the way the potions and the abilities worked out.  Keep in mind that the potions are exclusive within their own grouping types.  So if you choose to use the potion instead of your buff you certainly can, but that locks out the choice of other potions from that grouping for you.  You always have the choice of using your buff instead and choosing a different potion from that grouping.  Now are all the potions equally compelling?  Well, no, obviously not and that’s something we’d like to fix in the future.

Q – Do you plan on re-evaluating the currency conversion rate, specifically when it comes to Conqueror > Officer Medallion conversions?

Nate – Not at the moment, no.

Q – Are you looking at giving parity between the Disciple of Khaine and the Warrior Priest when it comes to Righteous Fury and Soul Essence regen?

Nate – We made some changes to the Disciple a couple patches back now to change some of their resource management.  They are much closer now.  We don’t have any specific plans to make any further changes to that that I can share right now.

Q – Bombing is still a problem on (some) servers.  Do you think it would be better to let all magic resists go above the current cap?

Nate – Increasing the diminishing returns cap for magic resists has far more implications than just bomb groups.  There are lots of other strategies that are just as, if not more, effective than bombing that we’ve seen across all the servers.  So, anti-bomb isn’t really a huge priority to us right now as there’s already plenty of ways to do that and moving that resistance would have significant impact on the game all around and that’s not something we would do just on a whim to fix a smaller issue.

Q – Are there more vanity items coming?

Carrie – Yes.  (GG – See?)

Q – Why are there no Crit Healing liniments?

Nate – We don’t have liniments for every stat combination.  I’ve answered that a couple times in the past.  We are aware that there are request for certain types and they are something we have on our radar, but we don’t have any plans to put them in imminently.  (GG – FYI: this question has been asked in at least 6 Q&As now.  Seriously.)

Q – Are there any plans to increase the Renown Ranks to 100?

Carrie – That’s something that’s certainly not off the table.  (GG – You’re killing me Smalls…)

Q – Any plans to give Warrior Priests a mirror to Curse of Khaine?

Nate – That’s not specifically on the plate for the immediate future.  But like I’ve said before, we’d rather make the Careers more similar than dissimilar.

Q – Do you plan on implementing eligibility restrictions for rolling for loot in a City instance?

Nate – This is kind of the same idea as lower Rank people out in Open RvR getting Sovereign currency as well.  We don’t particularly have any plans to change it because people can still contribute to the fight and be part of winning that fight even if they aren’t able to use the loot right now.  Anything they get they’ll be able to use eventually and as long as they’re contributing, they have an equal chance to win.

Q – Any plans on increasing the drop rate of Officer Medallions?

Andy – We kind of covered that, but this is a different way of asking that question and I’ll let Nate address that if he wants to.

Nate – We’re monitoring the rate of the Medallions coming into and leaving the game since we changed the conversions.  We don’t have any plans to make any changes right now, but it is something we are watching and have been watching.

(GG – This is an important answer.  Not because of the topic necessarily, but because of how it shows that sometimes it’s not the question you ask, but how you ask it that gets you an informative response.  You’ll notice in these Q&As that a lot of questions get asked repeatedly and get next to no answer every time.  They tend to follow the same format, so it’s easy to see why they’re given a PC/fluff answer.  It’s a good thing to keep in mind when thinking about what you want to ask in these sessions.  Think about how to ask the question in a way that will get you the most informative answer possible and you may find more of your questions get answered.)

Q – Can you paraphrase what you believe the role of the Engineer/Magus to be?

Nate – Our general intent is for them to be ranged attackers that are the most effective when they can be dug-in and have a chance to set themselves up.

Q – Can you please confirm that Snurz is the prettiest Shaman in the world?

Keaven – We can neither confirm nor deny that statement.

Q – Do you plan on evaluating the 30 second cooldown for the capability of changing between modes for the Zealot and the Rune Priest?

Nate – That’s a new feature that’s up on the PTS and that’s what the PTS is for.  So, go play PTS and give us your feedback.

Q – Any plan to make it so that people that crash to desktop don’t get the Quitter debuff?

James Casey – So as far as that goes, what we’re going to do is take a look at what kind of crashes are being reported, what kind of issues people are having and try to approach it from that aspect rather than change the Quitter debuff mechanic.  But we’ll be monitoring the whole thing, especially to see how it plays out in 1.3.6, and go from there.

Q – Do you plan on addressing parity between the different delves in different Careers?

Nate – Any time we see any abilities being used disproportionally far too often, we’re always concerned.  Across the board we’d always like people to have a variety of equally valuable abilities.  We never want someone to have one that’s head-and-shoulders above the others so you don’t use anything else, no.

Q – What is the Kraken Sea and why is it a zone if there’s absolutely nothing to do there and I have to exploit terrain to get there?

Andy – Well, you shouldn’t be exploiting terrain…  It’s there…but you’re not supposed to be there…  Carrie, do you want to answer the rest of that?

Carrie – Gah, what is with the bus?  Hello?!?!?  No, I don’t want to answer it.

Nate – The very, very short answer is we build out a lot more of the game than we ever end up using and sometimes there are things like that.

Andy – And sometimes there’s room for things that we can build in the future.

Nate – Conveniently enough…

Carrie – Yeah, like no one ever asks what’s on the other side of the zone in Cinderfall and Death Peak.

Andy – Wow.

Gaarawarr – That’s cuz some of us have been there.  😉

Carrie – That’s f’d…

Andy – Alrighty then….next question.

Q – Any chance of a Ventrilo session like this for Dark Age of Camelot?

Andy – Well, what we decided to do was get someone who’s a little bit closer to that game to let you know what the answer to that is, so just a second guys.

Stuart Zissu (The Silver-Haired Fox) – Hey, it’s Stuart from DAoC, I’m the Producer there.  Long time listener, first time caller.  I just wanted to let you guys know that I’ve been looking at these sessions and they seem like a great way of interacting with the community and as you know for DAoC, that is really what we’re focusing on right now.  This is definitely a strong possibility of things to do.  We’ve been looking for things like this.  Yeah, this looks like a blast.

Q – Are you planning on adding end-game gear that is more challenging to acquire?

Nate – There is a fine line there.  We want high-level gear, or I should say Signature Gear, to be not just “You level and you get it handed to you.”  We want it to be something you work for and be proud of getting.  At the same time, if we make gear so that only a fraction of a fraction of a minority of people will ever get it, that’s not really the best thing for us or for the game.  So we have to walk a fine line there.  In general, we’re probably not going to put in gear that is almost inaccessible to everybody because that’s, honestly, a little silly.  But do we want high-end gear or Signature Gear to be something that you’re proud of getting, that you’re proud of putting the work and time in for?  Absolutely.  (GG – An interesting note from the PTS Stability Test later that night was that it was stated that less than 5% of the WAR population has full Sovereign.)

Q – Can I haz Fester Bomb for my Squiggie please?

Steven – Is that lolcat speak?

Andy – It’s like lolsquig speak I think.

Steven – Actually, we are trying to move towards parity between certain Careers.  Whether or not we’re looking to give you the situation where you can produce a Fester Bomb, that right there, not really sure.  Haven’t looked into that.  But we are pushing towards parity. 

(GG – They like that word, huh?  For those who might still not get what they’re saying:  Parity (noun) – equality, as in amount, status, or character.)

Q – Any plans to make non-Chosen/Knight Tanks more impactful in large-scale Open RvR battles?

Nate – I wouldn’t agree with the premise that they’re not viable to begin with, honestly.  There’s certainly an argument to be made that Chosen/Knights bring a lot in large-scale fights in part due to their abilities being large-scale as a part of their Career, but the other Tanks certainly have effectiveness that they bring to the fight.

Q – Any plans to lower or remove the cooldown on Cleanse/Cure to zero seconds or perhaps have it ignore the GCD with a 5-second cooldown?

Nate – I think Steven actually brings that up to me every three hours, so it’s something we’re discussing, yes.

Steven – Speaking of which Nate, I’m bringing it up now.

Andy – Alright, sorry about that guys.  (GG – I can only think he was apologizing for us having to listen to Steven. 😉 This is what you get for dodging my question Steven.)

Q – How about making use of the /duel command?

Carrie – It’s something I mentioned in the Q&A a while ago but, you may not have been there, so I’m happy to refresh.  We do have /duel in some capacity in the game, however we didn’t get it up to the polish level that we wanted in respect to making sure that the rules made sense and that you can do it in certain places and you can’t do it in others.  There’s a lot of different pieces that we require to be polished to kind of push it through and make it really useful.  And as well, we’d need to consider the IP.  So it’s something we have that is kind of like “in our pocket” if we prioritize it, but right now we’re prioritizing some other things.

Q – The Funerary Shroud of Khutep can have Souls slotted but the other Funerary Shrouds cannot.  Is this a bug with Khutep or with the other Shrouds?

Nate – I’ll check on that for you.  I don’t have an answer right now.

Q – Any plans for Open RvR Weekend Warfronts?

James Casey – I actually do have a design I’m working on for them but as far as when and how far in the future you’ll actually see them, I can’t give an answer like that.  It’s something we’re investigating though.

Q – Any plans on implementing Cross-Server Scenarios?

Andy – Here comes the bus…Carrie?

Carrie – I love this job…  It is absolutely one of those things that comes up often and we look at it and we think about it and we evaluate the risk involved in implementing it along with the value.  Once we kind of wrap up what our plans are for Open RvR, I think that would be a time to start looking at it again.  Right now we’re focusing on Open RvR, so we’re not focusing on that aspect of Scenarios.  It’s certainly something we’d like to do if we believe it’s worth the time and risk.

Q – Any plans to bring back some of the fancier Chosen Aura graphics?

Nate – We’re not planning on changing any of the effects right now, no.

Q – Would you consider making Chalice/Tome Disciples of Khaine/Warrior Priests have their robes converted to Light Armor since they’re effectively back-line?

Nate – That’s an interesting question, but probably not, no.  The Careers are still a front-line Career on the whole, at least by our intent.

Q – Any plans on evaluating the parity between Shaman and Archmage DPS specs?

Nate – The only thing I can really say to that is what I have said a couple of times before.  All things being equal, I’d rather make the Careers more similar than less similar.  But I really don’t have an answer beyond that.

Q – Any plans to support Addon Developers with documentation of the WAR API?

Andy – That is definitely something that I’m currently communicating with the Development Team that I would like to give you guys more resources like that.  I have communicated that to the Engineering Team.  Right now we’re working on it.  It’s simply a matter of what is a priority and what is not.  So, as soon as we can give you an update on that, we’d be happy to.  There hasn’t been a whole lot that has changed about the API with the recent exception of the /assist command no longer being accessible by Addons.

James Casey – And the forums are still a good place to try and get some of that information.  To try to work not only with other Addon Devs, but for us to visit and see what you guys are looking at and what you might need help with.  That type of thing.

Andy – Thanks for coming out to this Q&A Session.  There will be another one after next week’s Public Test session that will be a little later, or earlier depending on your point of view.  Again, we’ll be heading out to Baltimore Games Day.  We’ll be heading out to Games Day UK as well.  We’ll also be heading to Games Con in Cologne, Germany.  We’re definitely open to suggestions on where to get together and have a fan gathering.  We look forward to meeting a lot of you and if you have any suggestions for what you’d like to see at these conventions, feel free to PM it to me on the forums or leave it in a feedback thread for me to look at.

40 Comments leave one →
  1. Legis permalink
    July 31, 2010 6:40 am

    mmm… i dont like that “no comment” on the new races question, i think we wont have any new races on the new expansion (if there is any)

    • Laerfric permalink
      July 31, 2010 9:22 am

      They will never give more info on that on a Q&A section primarily made for discussing what has already been mentioned or proposals centred around that theme.

      The information has already been hinted as coming out at Games Con in Cologne.

  2. arcueid permalink
    July 31, 2010 7:56 am

    This failed, totally.
    Cross server scenarios is a GOOD IDEA

    Weekend Warfronts, why not Monthly PORTALS in Altdorf/IC to challenge other Strange Phenomna…. (SERVERS)

    Mysterious Portals to Battle in the OLD IC / ALTDORF of other SERVERS

    Iron Rock Altdorf vs Badlands Destruction

    Server portal spawns, you click on it and it says.. “BADLANDS/IRONROCK”
    You go in as a full warband…


    Then, make a Ladder, at the end of the Year post the finding…

    Iron Rocks Destruction #1, vs Volkmars Order #1.

    Release RR80 Weapons to all the Winners.

    • gaarawarr permalink
      July 31, 2010 10:07 am

      Because in the past, pitting Server vs. Server would screw up the overall Campaign. No one wanted to lose on their Server because some other Server showed up with more numbers.

      With the current system, it’s more feasible. Only time will tell if it’s something they want to do with Scenarios.

      The thing to remember here is that in the past it was pretty much a guaranteed “not gonna happen” but now it’s something they’re considering. That’s a good place to be.

    • weenus permalink
      July 31, 2010 11:09 am

      I think the moment then began screwing with the playable SC’s, they threw out their only real defense for no implementing cross server queues. At this point, when most of the tier pairings are two Empire vs. Chaos SC’s and one Elf or Dwarf SC, the who interaction between zone flips and the SC’s are made almost moot. With the system seemingly being based off of where the player queues from, rather than the intended system of having to play the local zone’s specific SC, they’ve already turned the SC’s for zone-flip contribution system on it’s head and it could work identically with cross-server queuing, with the exception that EVERY PLAYER in WAR would experience an immense increase in quality of gameplay by being able to get queues at any time.

      At this point, cross server queuing is the ONLY solution for populating T2 and T3’s SCs on the servers other than Badlands, which I’m personally experiencing myself, as my Order characters are on Badlands and are no longer xferable, though my Dest is on the Orderless Volkmar.

      Basically, I just want to be able to play a T3 SC, and the only way that’s going to happen in the next month is if they implement cross server queuing or they open up transfers again fully. Either way, I just wanna play my characters and not have to stress out over the fact that I’m stranded on a server with horrible population balance and ZERO T3 queues.

    • Laerfric permalink
      July 31, 2010 3:42 pm

      I’m sure everyone has had an experience similar to this and all I can do is sympathise. My first server in WAR was EU Karak Vlag. There was literally a few hundred people on the server total. I had I think 3 keep sieges in tier 3 total, all of which were practically pve, and I used to play a lot lol. It took me fooking ages to level up doing RvR, and in the end I gave up.

      When transfers came like 4-5 months later, my renown was 20 levels behind my rank. Back then however, there was a far higher quality on Karak Eight Peaks, far more indeed than Karak Norn (one of two most populated in Europe), despite the endless trial.

      Tier 2 is really dead even on a server as supposedly active as KN, can’t imagine tier 3 😦

    • gaarawarr permalink
      August 1, 2010 1:29 pm

      To be honest, you’re exaggerating things. The upcoming changes to LotD and the addition of NPCs in the T2/3 RvR areas will bring change to those Tiers, hopefully very positive change.

      The fact that Scenarios are still tied to the Campaign makes cross-server q’ing impossible. No one wants to lose zones because of the actions of people on another server. That has always been the #1 argument against x-server q’s and it remains as strong now as ever.

    • weenus permalink
      August 1, 2010 1:55 pm

      I kinda don’t understand why you would even bother replying to my post if you didn’t read it, gaarwarr.

      My major complaint is the T2/T3 SC’s. Actually, Volkmar’s ORVR isn’t so bad. As long as Order even logged on that day, there’ll be at least a couple of zones to flip, but PVE ORVR flipping is just as old and boring and sitting and waiting for a queue to pop in T3.

      Again though, the SC’s contributing to VPs for Zone Flips thing was made MOOT the minute they chopped out the SC’s in each Tier Pairing. If there was still a Empire, Dwarf, and Elf SC in all four Tiers, I would agree with you, but there isn’t, they messed all of that up. When they messed all of that up, they made it as open for Cross-Server-Queues as you really could.

      As of right now, if the only way that a zone knows that I am contributing SC’s towards the Zone Flip is because I’m queuing from inside the zone. Everyone can still do that if there were cross server queues.

      You know what the only difference would be gaarwarr?

      Queues would actually pop.

      Yeah it would be completely insane.

    • gaarawarr permalink
      August 1, 2010 4:11 pm

      I did read your reply, you just don’t seem to be looking at everything that affects Scenarios popping. Removing the ability for people to skip Tiers 1-3 by going to LotD means more people will be in those Tiers period. A larger population actively trying to level will mean a general increase in both Open RvR and Scenarios.

      The adjustment to the Scenario Structure by no means made their affect on the Campaign moot. In fact, it increased the flipping of zones in general since every win applied itself to every pairing. You can ignore that all you want in an attempt to make your argument valid, but that doesn’t make it go away.

      “As of right now, if the only way that a zone knows that I am contributing SC’s towards the Zone Flip is because I’m queuing from inside the zone.”

      This statement only shows that you don’t know how the system works. You can Q from anywhere in the WAR-world and the system knows you’re contributing towards zone capture. Hence why when you’re in a Scenario, regardless of what zone you’re in, you’ll get zone capture rewards given to you. I can be in Altdorf and be running Scenarios and get the capture reward for Black Crag while in the Scenario despite Altdorf not having anything to do with that pairing.

      One thing you need to keep in mind here is that I’m not against X-Server Qs. In fact, I’d love to see them as I’d love to see insta-pop Scenarios 24 hours a day as it would only increase the popularity of WAR. However, until Scenarios have zero effect on the overall Campaign, it would only create more problems with the Campaign than we have already. The only difference isn’t that Scenarios would pop more often. It would also cause zones to capture even faster now than they started doing with the restructure.

      Do the math. Imagine how many Scenarios could be running at once between every server WAR has, both EU and US. Imagine what would happen to the VP values every couple of minutes as different combinations of wins filtered in, from all Order to all Destruction and every mix in-between. It would effectively make VP from Scenarios an utter and complete wild-card for every server and give you zero reliable ways to push a zone. Because even if every single person from your Realm on your server was winning in Scenarios, you could still not be getting any positive VP movement for your server due to the opposite Realm on every other server being dominant overall.

      Sacrificing a major aspect of WAR to make Scenarios better is not a viable alternative to the situation, regardless of what one person may think.

  3. August 1, 2010 12:34 am

    Thanks for typin this all up Gar, wasn’t there 😦 /salute

  4. Laerfric permalink
    August 1, 2010 11:53 am

    One final thing from me, did anyone notice a question regarding undefendable land of the dead talismans? Most people seem to agree that they need to be changed, has mythic already said they are not looking at changing them? Or am I missing something entirely.

    • gaarawarr permalink
      August 1, 2010 1:31 pm

      They’ve already been changed. On the PTS right now, the amount of time they’re active has been cut from 15s to 7s.

  5. weenus permalink
    August 1, 2010 9:45 pm

    Enlighten me (not meant to be read sarcastically, btw) on how Scenario’s influence on zone flips work please. From there I’ll reply to the larger post.

  6. gaarawarr permalink
    August 1, 2010 11:38 pm

    The zone capture mechanic was made fairly transparent when they added the ability to click the VP bar and have it show the breakdown by pool of the various things that contribute to a zone capture.

    Currently, in Tier 4, the pools are: Objectives (45%), Skirmish (20), Scenarios (25%), PvE (5%), Prior Tier (5%). There are a total of 100 possible Victory Points that can be earned and you need 65 of them to capture a zone. If you look at the breakdown, you’ll see that Scenarios currently have the second-highest contribution to zone capture of all the pools with 25 points.

    So, outside of owning all the Objectives in a zone, the biggest contributing factor to the swing of VP in any given zone is the Scenario VP Pool. It can quite literally make or break a zone capture as you’ll never max out a Skirmish pool in normal circumstances due to the rate of decay it has. In the next patch, they’re even removing the PvE and Prior Tier pools and adding those in to the other pools which will make the Scenario Pool even more important to zone capture.

    Different Tiers have different % contribution for the Scenario Pool, but in all cases, it is a very large factor and not one to just toss to chance.

  7. frega permalink
    August 2, 2010 2:38 am

    Still no premade vs pug fix, disappointing.

    They really should answer things better than. Translations:-

    “we want to achieve parity”, but we wont because we haven’t looked into it yet.
    “we are looking into it”, you know just looking and watching but not doing anything about it.
    “no immediate plans”, we don’t acknowledge it as a problem
    “nothing we can share”, but really we actually haven’t thought of that.

    These Q&As are a waste of time.

    Someone should ask, “when you say about wanting to achieve parity, or looking into it, or listening to feedback, do you actually investigate our claims or just shrug it off?”

  8. weenus permalink
    August 2, 2010 6:30 am

    You still haven’t explained to me how scenario contribution is factored into the zone flip. I know it’s worth 20% with the VPs, I get that, I’m asking you how it picks and chooses what players contribute their Scenario VP’s to which zone. Originally, the pairings each had a specific SC in each tier. That way when you did Tor Anroc, you were contributing to Dwarf vs. Greenskin Tier 3 Lakes. Since most tiers are Nordenwatch, Reikland Factory, and then a random third, (two Empires and a random, leaving one Pairing out), how is it deciding what contribution goes where?

  9. Xyris permalink
    August 2, 2010 7:24 am

    ” Legis permalink
    July 31, 2010 6:40 am

    mmm… i dont like that “no comment” on the new races question, i think we wont have any new races on the new expansion (if there is any)”

    I took that in the opposite way. They’re obviously not going to say, “Yes”, right now and blow their big Gamesday announcement. On the other hand, if they didn’t have anything in the works, it would have been much easier and simpler to say, “Not at this time,” like they did with so many other questions.

  10. Pre permalink
    August 2, 2010 2:51 pm

    Weenus, every SC in every pairing contributes equally to the overall SC VP pool in every pairing. If you win in Reikland factory you are contributing to the flip of every contested zone. That’s why you get credit (Renown points) for any zone flip when you’re in any SC now.

  11. gaarawarr permalink
    August 2, 2010 3:31 pm

    Aye, what Pre said. Every Scenario win now contributes equally to every Pairing. Hence why now, more than ever, Scenarios are a huge, huge part of zone captures. At least before a win in a Racial Scenario would have only applied to that Pairing. Now it affects all three.

  12. August 2, 2010 3:48 pm

    Gaarawarr, I am definitely down for Camden yards after GD. Good idea. You posting info through the blog or on WHA?

    • gaarawarr permalink
      August 2, 2010 5:15 pm

      It will actually be the night before Games Day. Working on the Announcement now. I’ll post it here and hopefully get it on the Official Forums as well as places like Warhammer Alliance.

  13. weenus permalink
    August 2, 2010 5:14 pm

    If it’s that marginalized then I still fail to understand how this would be the grinding halt on cross-server queues. It’s already been made so general that you’re contributing to all three pairings in the tier, how would the fact that you might be winning/losing SCs with people from other servers break that?

    • gaarawarr permalink
      August 2, 2010 7:28 pm

      @Weenus Volume. It’s one thing to have the 2-6 Scenarios that might be going on your Server in your Tier contributing to all Pairings. It’s a completely different ballgame when it’s anywhere from 10-30 at once dumping into the VP Pool. If you can’t see that, fine. But it’s a very valid concern in terms of the overall feel of the Campaign.

  14. weenus permalink
    August 2, 2010 11:00 pm

    I mean, I don’t know what server(s) you are playing on but I can tell you this, right now, my overall Campaign feels like Order is extremely outnumbered on Volkmar and for 22 of the 24 hours in a day, they do all of NOTHING. My campaign experience on Volkmar (as Dest) has been a whole lot of Civil War (AKA: Tarren Mill) combat out front of Order Warcamps while spending more time healing off NPC DPS rather than player DPS, and the SC’s in T3 are just entirely non-existent.

    I’d rather them re-balance an aspect of their ORVR that they’re already in the process of tweaking, and an aspect that they’ve already tooled with, than continue to play a single player MMO.

    I would love to move my Shaman to a more active server but my Order characters are all stuck on Badlands, and being that I’m already on the second most active server, I’m just screwed until I grind out to T4 I guess, but I didn’t come back to WAR to grind through PVE, I came back because when the RVR is actually happening, it’s a lot of fun, it just doesn’t happen and my hands are tied behind my back.

    As far as your condescending comment about me being unable to see the point, I can see the point, you just posted three times before someone actually answered the question pertaining to the part I needed further education on. I can get it, it makes plenty of sense, I’m just saying, I think its foolish to protect this aspect of gameplay that they could just as well rebalance (again) and vastly improve the activity level of their game EXPONENTIALLY, rather than accept the problem as is and pray that the other three servers eventually get better population balance.

    I guess the real issue is that the game has been out for two years and Mythic still seems to be ironing out the kinks of contribution on a loot level, let alone on a x-server-queuing vs. VP level problem.

    Either way, this is all I know. This game is hemmoraging activity in the T2/T3 area, despite the fact that a lot of people are actually leveling up. The issues with server transfers and the major population balance issues have even the most active server (Badlands) having a productivity blackout in those tiers.

    I think it is positively asinine to hold back a near 100% guarantee of at least ONE SC running per Tier at all hours of the day, all in defense of a VP system that’s already less than perfect.

    I also hardly see how changing/tweaking/re-balancing the SC VP contribution for X-server-queues would be ruin the overall feel of the Campaign any more or less than removing Prior tier will. Should Mythic have been walking on the same proverbial eggshells with Prior Tier that you insist they should when dealing with the SC VP’s?

    • August 2, 2010 11:36 pm

      First, nowhere did I say I’m not for X-Server queues. My point is they’d have to remove or severely reduce the contribution Scenarios currently make to the Campaign. However, your focus is on how this would affect gameplay in Tiers 2/3 based on your statements here. For all we know, the change to LotD and the addition of high-XP mobs in the RvR lakes in those Tiers could vastly change the experience you’re having right now, without even touching how Scenarios work. Seeing as how one of the most basic rules regarding cause-and-effect experimentation is not changing too many things at once, it makes sense that we’re not going to see anything happen to Scenarios this patch and possibly in the next. It all comes down to what they see as the major issues affecting the game.

      If you don’t agree with their choices, definitely voice your opinion. Go to the PTS and participate in the tests and give feedback. Post in the Dev Discussion posts they put up when they ask about things like this. Make your voice heard, but do so in thoughtful and intelligent ways while keeping an eye on the overall game and not just a given micro-system.

      Good luck.

  15. weenus permalink
    August 3, 2010 4:15 am

    Through the admittedly small looking glass I have on T2 and T3, I don’t think the LotD change willl make a big difference. I check the players semi-often, searching through the different scenario zones to get a feel for how many SC’s are running in which tiers (my group of friends and I were trying to figure out where to transfer to before we realized we were all stuck) and in all reality, there is maybe a single group from Dest side on Volkmar in each of the mid tiers, tops. If five or six players are making or breaking the rest of the tier, this game has bigger problems to deal with than x-server queues.

    • August 3, 2010 9:51 am

      @Weenus The difference isn’t that the people are on but not there. The difference is made in people knowing that there is RvR and Scenarios going on in the Tier because people can’t skip it anymore. I know a lot of people that just aren’t bothering leveling their alts, for instance, simply because they want to do so in RvR and not grind in LotD. With this change, more of them will log in to play in those Tiers simply because they think they’ll be more active. That in and of itself makes them more active. At a certain point, it becomes self-perpetuating. The same thing applies to the Against All Odds buff for being outnumbered.

  16. Krugge permalink
    August 3, 2010 9:01 am

    It has always been my understanding that from the very beginning SC’s were never supposed to be what they are today. Even in pre-launch mode Mythic was touting that SC’s ‘though part of the general campaign would be for a causal quick fray of PvP if you didn’t have a lot of time to play’.
    Knowing that I am in the vast minority for what I am about to type but I would rather see more effort placed away from SC’s and placed into improving ORvR. SC’s have turned into the FarmVille of Warhammer, used to quickly gain the needed resources your character need’s to purchase equipment.
    Please don’t get me wrong, I like SC’s but I do it primarily when I am levelling PvE and alone at that. I just love when half of the people doing a PQ up and leave because a SC ‘pops’. Or the group you have guarding the objective leaves the post for a SC to return to it in the hands of the enemy (complaining to the fact that it was lost to boot).
    I know the game has changed since launch and for the most part for the better. I just feel that the SC’s are over used in regarding the ‘Campaign’ to the determent of ‘ORvR’ which is the backbone of Warhammer.
    Anyways that’s my two cents.

    • August 3, 2010 10:03 am

      @Krugge If you talk to people that were in the early Beta, you’ll find that in actuality Scenarios were the core of the game. They were the Campaign. Even at Launch, Scenarios were more heavily frequented than the RvR lakes which brought about initial changes to the game in terms of the rewards for RvR versus Scenarios. Now, both types of gameplay are fairly equally rewarded, but since Scenarios are bite-size chunks of RvR, they tend to get more people.

  17. Krugge permalink
    August 3, 2010 10:20 am

    I was in the beta and the quote (sorry, I have tried to get the exact wording but it was a little while ago) I put in was from a now infamous mythic employee. The drive as stated in almost ever post out of Mythic has been a push to put people into the ORvR lakes. I then find it odd that SC’s are so driven to take people ‘directly’ out. I mean you can still find the “original SC entrances throughout the ORvR lakes that would make people at least enter those area’s of risk to get to an SC. With the feed back and for the ease of use the enablement of players to cue for SC’s outside of those lakes really, in my opinion, was nice but still took away from people in the ORvR.
    Then again there were no keeps just objectives in the early version of the lakes either. Due to feedback they were quickly added.
    Just a thought really, and know that the vast majority love the SC’s, which is fine I like them, just not the general use I guess. Always good to have differing opinions on the subject right?
    Great Blog by and by, keep up the good work.

  18. Krugge permalink
    August 3, 2010 12:18 pm

    Will have to wait till I get home after work to read those link. They don’t make it through the Wall-O-Fire here at work.

  19. weenus permalink
    August 3, 2010 5:09 pm

    Well, the factor you reference about people who were discouraged to play their Mid-tier alts is definitely a possibility and would be helpful, I hope you’re right about that.

    I personally have found the ORVR lakes to be the only consistently active portion of the game now, throughout all four tiers. Maybe Tier 1 is too busy in Nordland to hit up the other pairings… but for the most part, since I accidentally ended up on the bloated side of the two most populated servers, I don’t have trouble finding an ORVR WB or two to play with almost all day. The problem is whether or not there are Dest on Badlands or Order on Volkmar to stand against us or to flip stuff back.

    I don’t think that’s a fault of the Devs per say though (aside from the Server x-fer debacle) it’s a fault of the populations and reluctant/out numbered armies. Hopefully Against All Odds will fix that but…

    I’ve been playing since fairly early into beta, as well as a couple of the guys I play with who were in beta long before me, and we all remembered that ORVR was pretty much non-existent when the game first launched. Most people were either SCing, PVEing, or PQing. The RVR Lakes occasionally had some action but it was rare. Now, the ORVR lakes are the center of the action on every server I’ve tried to play on. Hardly anyone PVE’s, meaning a lot of the PQ’s are basically unplayable unless you have a half decent group, and the SC queues become unbearably few and far between in most cases.

    I imagine at this point, Mythic really needs to actively take the community by the hand and re-populate the deficient realms on their servers. Throw realm specific XP/RR bonuses on the servers that need help. When I first came to Volkmar, it had the bonus for both, if it was just Order I wouldn’t have rolled Destro there.

    It’s all just muddled and there is little to no direction or communication to make up for the lack there-of from Mythic. I understand they’re obviously working on whatever expansion content they’ll be announcing at Gamescom but the most frustrating thing with WAR right now is the lack of information about the direction or state of the game. All we’ve got from the Devs so far is hyperbole, rabbit hole promises and pipe dreams. It’s really maddening after essentially tricking six of my friends into reactivating just so I could get them all stuck on a server with zero SC activity in our tier.

    I’m a scumbag and a bad friend. :3

  20. Castamere permalink
    August 3, 2010 10:19 pm

    OK now I have to know – what IS on the other side of Death Peak and Cinderfall?


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