Dev Chat May 14 2009  

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Welcome and Introductions

Raven: Hello and welcome to the Zam developer chat. Here today from Zam are Calthine, Kain, Spyderbite and myself. And now I'll let the devs introduce themselves...

Froech: Hey there. Bruce Ferguson, Producer. Welcome, everyone.

Kirstie: Hey, I'm Jennifer Gerull aka Kirstie, the Mechanics Supervisor

ImagoQuem: Ryan Favale - the graphics programmer

patherpanchali: I'm Roger Uzun I am responsible for the raid content.

GlipSOE: Hey all! I'm Nick Parkinson aka 'Glip the Gnome' -- I'm an Associate Producer. :-)

timetravelling: Heyo, I'm Brett Scheinert, Associate Game Designer - Content

Rothgar: Hiyas! I'm Greg Spence aka Rothgar, Sr. Programmer

Domino: Hi, I'm Emily "Domino" Taylor, tradeskills and general anything that needs doing =)

Aeralik: I'm Chris Kozak the class balance/combat programmer

Fyreflyte: Hi, I'm Jason Worner (or Fyreflyte, as you probably gathered from my screen name). I work on itemization.

Fyreflyte: wow

Kaitheel: I'm Nathan "Kaitheel" McCall, live event wrangler and quest designer

Fyreflyte: failed my own last name

Fyreflyte hangs his head in shame

Questions and Answers

feldon30: Ward of Elements is fun and challenging. One issue with the zone however is set bonuses. Equipping more than one piece of T3 armor breaks up the T2 set bonus. For tanks this means losing 7% mitigation. Going forward when armor sets are added, can one of the items in the NEXT tier include the set bonus of the PREVIOUS tier?

Kiara snorts

  • Fyreflyte: We've run up against this issue in a number of places recently, and have certainly been giving it a lot of thought. Unfortunately, it's not quite as simple as allowing the next set to count toward a current set's bonuses. You end up with some issues with double bonuses, and we'd need some new code support for it. We have a few plans for our next round of sets that should help avoid the problem, however. No specifics yet, as we're still testing them =)

Sharakari: Many of us make an attempt to complete as many quests as possible but are restricted from doing a large portion because of alliance to Qeynos or Freeport. Many neat suggestions have been made in the "Quests and Live Events" forums to allow folks from one faction to complete opposite faction quests. Things like a quest line to become a "Diplomat" that would alter faction just enough to receive quests. Do you see this as something that might actually be doable? If so, do you see this as something that you actually WOULD do?

  • Froech: It's an interesting idea, to be sure. We've discussed this issue several times, and have not yet come to a final resolution. There's something appealing to us to have several disparate ways to go through the world, with the two different alignments, and then the quests for betrrayal. It's something we'll continue to discuss, but I don't see it changing in the short term. Thanks!

Frekkles: How's the new GPU-based shadow system working out? I can't wait, the world looks so flat without shadows.

  • ImagoQuem: The GPU shadow system has been in test for over a month now. It looking great. There are softer edges, better frame rates, trees and plant life are casting dynamic shadows, including leaves and feathers.

udeg|vox: Have you ever thought of running a teamspeak server for the indepent servers were any one could talk in a channel, but not grouped, kinda like a freeport channel?

  • Rothgar: We don't have any plans for global channels at the moment. However, we are working on a new version of the Vivox wrapper that will hopefully be out soon. After we get the new version out, we can take a look at moving forward with some new voice chat features.

Kulssin: The Hot Zone Weekend. What was the thought behind this promotion? To get people to explore unpopulated zones? Experience gain is so fast right now. Why are we encouraging people to level even faster? Our new players are suffering as a result with no grouping opportunities. Wouldn't AA bonuses be a better move since that's where people are struggling?

  • Froech: The idea was to spread some folks around to some of the zones that aren't seeing as much usage, and give people a chance to help level their alts. Your idea isn't out of the question, to be sure, and we'll give it some consideration. We're certainly not trying to break up your ability to group :)

Stuegin - The whole "Void/Shadows" thing is starting to smell like EQ2's version of Discord. Like we're being set up to have them stuck as our primary antagonists, driving the story for the next couple years. Is this a fairly accurate perception? Are we looking at another year or two of "Void" related content releases or will we be wrapping this story arc up in the not too distant future?

  • timetravelling: There is a lot of crazy-cool stuff going on in the lore, and it is far from all limited to the Void Invasions recently. I promise that we'll have some new antagonists soon. /me ponders ...Isn't the GU52 preview up already? ^_^ We can't wait to show off all the cool places the lore is going to take y'all =)

Anvill: For the graphics department.. Are there any plans to decrease the load that placeables cause for those zoning in to their guild halls? Currently its taking people upwards of 3 mins just to zone in to their guild hall if they have more than 300 placeable items in their halls.

  • Rothgar: Loading times for zoning into a guild hall really depends as much on your computer's performance as it does the guild hall itself. A faster hard disk can improve loading times quite a bit. My home PC is using one of the 10k RPM drives and I'm able to load into my guild hall with 1600 items in about 30 seconds. We're always looking at ways to improve things on the server side, but if its truly taking you 3 minutes to zone into a hall with only 300 items, you might consider looking at ways to optimize your PC.
  • Rothgar: Not trying to pass the buck on performance, but at some point, client hardware can really slow things down. :)

feldon30:Will anything be done to keep Veeshan's Peak a viable zone in the next expansion? Assuming the level cap is raised to 90, acquiring Mythicals will be incredibly trivial. Has SoE considered scaling the zone to 90 and providing a quested item that dings the player to level 90 similar to the Munzok's item?

  • timetravelling: Yes, actually we do have plans to keep older, low-level content much more relevant! And not just Veeshan's Peak! But I can't tell you what those plans are, yet =D

Qualinel - Is Jumjum a radish-like tuber or a strawberry-like fruit, and how on earth do you make sandwiches, beer and preserves all out of the same damn plant??

  • Domino: Jumjum is a sweet tuber-like root. It looks similar to a sugar beet, but tastes more fruit-like. Like a sugar beet, it can be eaten plain or made into other things. And remember, halflings can make just about ANYTHING into beer. ;)

Kaldonia asks Domino - chores such as dust distillation are mind numbing. Any chance that you are looking in to making the task of distilling a stack of 500+ dusts take less than two weeks? Perhaps distilling 20 dusts at a time at the same cost distilling them one at a time?

  • Domino: This is something that I'm pondering, and we're discussing. I hope to see some improvements, but I can't say exactly what yet. You'll hear about it when we have something to confirm!

Cayanetta: Why did you choose to revisit Kunark with GU 52 instead of expanding on TSO content?

  • timetravelling: There are always a number of reasons for those sorts of decisions, but a huge part of this one was the lore. The story we're telling with the update revolves around quite a bit of stuff specifically in Kunark. Just wait til y'all get the chance to dive into the huge # of awesome quests Kaitheel is making =)

Ojeda: Are there any plans to expand on what the Provisioners can create. We use no rares at the moment. Even if its just an increase in quantities which would be wondeful! But, imbued food, food with bonuses.. etc.

  • Domino: This is a question that comes up quite frequently! The main concern about increasing quantities is that food already sells barely over cost price on the broker, and allowing people to make it in big numbers would reduce the profit severely. On the other hand, it CAN be annoying if you want to feed all your alts. (And I do have an epic'd provisioner, so I sympathize here!) It's something that we're considering a number of options for, but we want to be sure we don't unintentionally nerf provisioners while trying to help them, so we haven't come to a firm conclusion yet. That said, provisioners already do get a wider range of stats on food as of Kunark and that will certainly continue.

Sharakari: Do you think the drop rate on quest starters could be increased? Or maybe even take off the no-trade tag so we could buy them off the broker? I’m tired of farming grey mobs for days trying to get a quest starter to drop. And if you happen to take off the no-trade, it would be nice if you could search the broker for "quest starters". We questers would greatly appreciate this!

  • Kirstie: These are some ideas we'll think about. It's not something we have planned right now but it is worth some thought.

feldon30: - Is there anything new to report on Research Assistants?

  • Kirstie: Not if you've done your research
  • Froech: hee!
  • Kirstie: That being said, they should be on test next week and I'd encourage everyone to go check out how they turned out there and give feedback. I know the threads are long are hard to get through on the forums right now so data can be tough to find.

Stugein: - So...Vegas again, huh?

  • Kiara: yes :)
  • Fyreflyte: Vegas, baby... Vegas.
  • BruinenTheInsane:
  • Aeralik: what happens in vegas stays in vegas :)
  • timetravelling: none of us could remember what happened last time, so we decided to go again
  • Domino: lol
  • Rothgar: I remember making the team late for leaving because we were in the Star Trek experience. :)
  • BruinenTheInsane:
  • BruinenTheInsane:* we almost left you
  • Kiara: pft. What almost? I left without him!
  • Raven: before the devs start to fight - next question...
  • Rothgar: I can think of worse places to be left. :)

Frekkles: Is there anything in GU 52 for crafters?

  • Domino: Stuff for crafters? Do we add tradeskill content?
Domino looks around
  • Domino: Let's see....
  • Domino: Level 50+ Sages will soon be able to make a set of notebooks, which can hold user-created content (see Rothgar's EQII blog post and the forum thread for more information about this).
  • Domino: Carpenters may find it worthwhile to investigate -- or send their friends to investigate -- the Estate of Unrest a little more closely.
  • Domino: Tailors will see some changes to their hex dolls, which include a much reduced casting time, stat increase, and a set bonus for the mastercrafted ones.
  • Domino: Woodworkers and tailors will see their ranged weapons (bows, satchels, bandoliers, etc.) get a stat upgrade also!
  • Domino: Adventurers may find some small goodies in the new Charasis West wing, including perhaps a couple small goodies for provisioners.
  • Domino: I've made a few minor changes to the void tradeskill instance that folks have been asking for... including a slightly more satisfying ending, and more harvests per click.
  • Domino: Oh, and lots more I don't really have room to talk about...
  • Domino: So no ... nothin' really. ;) Sorry!

Pagengamer-AB: Are there any plans in effect for revamping the HO system so that people will feel that it an effective tactic again and worth the effort to use them? I have a few basic ideas for changes if suggestions are welcome in this area.

  • Froech: Plans, yes. In effect, not right now. This system is something the team's been looking at and kicking around ideas for a long time. It hasn't gotten to the front of the plate yet, but we still continue to look at it regularly, and discuss ideas about how we can improve it.

Faofilie: Now, what currently is the xp to aa conversion (numbers wise)? At this point in time, what is the planned increase that will go into test?

  • Aeralik: Currently the adventure xp to achievement xp is really small. So to better match the current level scaling this had been adjusted for gu52. Completing a dungeon should net you a good amount of achievement xp now.
  • Aeralik: Also in gu52 there are 80+ quests which will net you a good chunk of achievement experience.

Camphor: how will the difficulty of the new group zones comming in GU52 stack up against other RoK or TSO instances

  • timetravelling: The two new group zones will certainly be challenging, but not extremely difficult. There will be some really fun scripted encounters, but they shouldn't be nearly as difficult as somewhere like Palace of Ferzhul or Guk Stronghold.

Elquinjena: question about quest starters on books in places such as runnyeye, varsoons, CT will they ever be looked at and increased?

  • Domino: this was kinda answered before ... we can take a look at these.

Uoge|Vox: will we ever learn how to write master spell and combat arts?

  • Domino: we have no current plans to make master spells tradeskilled, but you'll surely hear about it if that ever changes. At present, we do not predict it.

Guest746: are we going to get any new adornment for crushing weapon such as 3% riposte or 3% mitigation increase?

  • Domino: There's a thread in the tradeskill forum where folks have been discussing ideas on adornment changes for a while, if you have specific comments, feel free to track it down and add them! We're definitely aware that adornments need a looking over and I'm hoping to fit this into my schedule this year. However, I don't have specifics yet. When I do, the tradeskill forum will hear about it :)

Pagengamer-AB: Despite the RP community being the smaller portion of your player base, do you have any plans to increase or support role-play on the role-play servers? If you are taking suggestions on this I have a few that may, or may not, work.

  • Kirstie: Even if the RP community is small they are a lot of fun. If you have suggestions please /feedback them (we do read it) or post it on the forums and we'll take a look.
Domino thinks the RP'ers are going to love the user books, too...

xphenix: For Domino : Someone spoke about a tinkerer event ?

  • Domino: Hmmm ... now where did that rumour come from?
  • Domino: Those gnomes get up to all sorts of things when you don't watch them carefully, and sometimes when you do! There are indeed some important festivals in the gnomish year, and we're likely to learn more about this in the coming months. =)

Raven: and in the grand zam tradition... our last question is the big one..... SpyderBite: Adam Lambert vs. Kris Allen in PvP... who would win?

  • Kiara: No one knows who those people are...
  • Fyreflyte: Err... who?
  • Domino: who are they?
  • HaohmaruEQ: bear grylls
  • Froech: Never heard of them.
  • Kirstie: Adam would win :)


SpyderBite: Thank you everyone! :)

Aeralik: thanks for stopping by everyone!

Froech: Thanks folks!

Rothgar: Thanks for having us!

HaohmaruEQ: G'nite all!

Fyreflyte waves!

timetravelling: toodles! =)

Raven: Thank you all for attending tonight - and for all the questions. The log will be on the site later thanks to the ever-wonderful Calthine!

Kirstie: Night all, /feedback me some smiley faces if you read this!

Kaitheel: Have a good night! Now to get back to the quest creation fun....

Domino: thanks for coming folks! See you next time and see you 'round the forums! (Where I'll be happy to provide a recipe for Toad in the Hole!)

Domino: oh, and belated happy birthday Dellmon ;)

ImagoQuem: Goodnight, goodbye.

FFA Tidbits

These are tidbits from the FFA channel after the chat.

Fyreflyte: Btw, I have some additional info on the sets question I answered earlier. I don;t want to detract from the chat, but if you hang around for a sec afterward, I can give a more complete answer (I never have much time during these things to really explain w/o making everyone else wait for me ;))

Feldon: Fyreflyte: what I said earlier before you joined #eq2ffa:

Feldon: > I'm not sure how you'd handle a mixture of T2 and T3 and which bonuses to implement.

Feldon: > That's why I came up with the "make the 3rd or 4th boss in the T3 zone award an item which has the set bonus from the T2.

Fyreflyte: Ahh, interesting. That is very similar to one of the ideas I had ;)

Feldon: I couldn't think of a smart way to have T2 and T3 pieces work together

Fyreflyte: Nods Feldon. I ran into the same problem. For every idea someone proposed on the forums, there was always an exploit attached to it that the poster hadn't considered.

Fyreflyte: I actually had the coders create me a way to make large sets like that without listing all the pieces ;)

Fyreflyte: We haven't refined it much yet, but it works, and keeps the examine window a bit less cluttered

Fyreflyte: Ok, so...

Faofilie: about them armour sets...

Fyreflyte: we already commented on some of this, but here's what I wrote earlier

Fyreflyte: The problem with upgrading set bonuses was compounded this expansion due to the way players upgrade their shard sets. It's an issue we hadn't run into much before. One idea I've had to help alleviate it would be to drop set pieces in WoE that were inferior to the actual shard armor, but helped complete the set for classes that absolutely needed their set bonuses.

Fyreflyte: This takes a bit of new code that allows for larger, slightly more dynamic sets, but may present an option to avoid this same problem in the future. It's still just in the idea phase, but is an example of the types of solutions we're looking at. For future gear, I'm definitely going to be careful about using such powerful bonuses high up in the set, as that by itself will reduce this issue a lot.

Fyreflyte: I'm probably just reiterating things at this point ;)

xphenix: btw mute option on mischief charm

Fyreflyte: oh, yeah someone PMed me about that

Fyreflyte: I'll take a look at it ;)

Raven: if you're working on items - stop all the dang heals proccing from hostile spells!!!!!!

Fyreflyte: "all the"? O.o you mean Unstable Emollient?

Raven: there are a lot of items that have the effect - and hell if furies can't heal properly don't let their items do it ;)

arch: has the proc rate on death chimes etc been fixed yet?

Fyreflyte: I actually don't know arch. that was a code problem and Aeralik was looking at it. I suspect he's got it fixed locally

Faofilie: dev tracker shows aeralick stating he fixed ill will and death chimes internally

xphenix: more set of jewelry from raid/group instances ?

Fyreflyte:Bold Text Set jewelry from instances/raids: yes. I've had some plans for some extra shard gear too for awhile, but have had zero time in which to implement it =/

Raven: too busy working on those armor dyes??? hehehehe

Fyreflyte: So many projects, so little time!

Fyreflyte: I'm not a big fan of armor dyes

Fyreflyte: We actually have some technical issues with them as well, since a LOT of our armor isn;t tintable

Fyreflyte: all of the new sets that have been coming out, I've had to ask artists for specific colors of when I need them. When they use a fresnel shader, they become difficult to tint

xphenix: TSO top shields are bit shabby :( the one from Ykesha don't look so good

Fyreflyte: Shield progression got a bit messed up last expansion, and it was hard to correct it without a level cap increase =/

xphenix: oh appearance i meant

xphenix: stats are sound and nice

Fyreflyte: We'll be paying good attention to it in the future though =) I've got more help with itemization now, which gives me more time to provide oversight, rather than just scrambling to pump out items

Fyreflyte: oh, hm, we had a few cool ones I thought. Maybe the designers weren;t using them =/

Faofilie: I've seen some cool ones meself. Which ones are you referring to, xphenix?

xphenix: harder part with some of those stats is how depending of which expansion an item as been made it mean something different

Fyreflyte: Usually when I'm checking items someone else did, I focus on the stats. Whcih means I often forget to check the appearance beyond that fact that it's the right type of item.

Kendricke: was the new UI discussed at all?

Kendricke: or did that question not get asked?

Kendricke: I'd heard rumors you guys were looking into a Lua friendly UI

Kendricke: is that something you can confirm?

Fyreflyte has no diea

Fyreflyte: idea too

Kendricke: ok

Fyreflyte: sorry =/

Kendricke: I know that Rothgar's working on "something"(TM)

Kendricke: but he hasn't gone into much detail on it

xphenix: some of the new stats are hard for people to understand, got to explain a defiler that his TSO 6set bonus was heal crit bonus and heal crit chance he didn't know the difference

Fyreflyte: xphenix: I've bugged Aeralik about that from time to time. I'd kind of like to do it all at once and get some better naming conventions added

Fyreflyte: rather than pick the bonus names apart piecemeal. I'll bring that up at our next meeting xphenix: some stats have been renamed from time to time

xphenix: like EH crafted boots people understand base damage from the description when it is actually spell damage

xphenix: or just between and i guess it's shield effectiveness for both but not sure

xphenix: also give trouble with the nice personnal status window there's a reuse stat in offensive and healing spell except there's specific offensive and healing reuse + some reuse that does both

xphenix: usually it just show the lowest reuse it can show

Fyreflyte: unfortunately I don't think we can fix that

Fyreflyte: not without a major overhaul of the spell mod system

Fyreflyte:Bold Text I've been trying to use more generic bonuses when I can, so that it all shows up in the persona window

Fyreflyte: as I shift to the more generic bonuses, that problem will become less and less apparent

EverQuest II

This page last modified 2009-05-14 23:28:29.