If you haven’t hopped back into EverQuest II since the launch of The Menagerie update earlier this month, you might want to do it today: Today is the very last day to redeem a free level 100 character boost for an existing or brand-new toon. All accounts that existed before April 20th can log in and grab the boost (and its concomitant 320 AAs and properly leveled gear) for nothing; accounts newer than that will need to sub first. The promo runs out at 3 a.m. EDT tomorrow morning (midnight tonight PDT).
MOP’s Stream Team recently hopped back into the game to check out the newly introduced Proving Grounds; you can see that below!
We’re sorry to report this evening the passing of an MMORPG genre veteran, John Tessin, who worked for SOE for 13 years, most extensively on EverQuest II.
John’s daughter told friends and family that he’d been suffering from cancer but that his death was nevertheless sudden. She asked for a small donation through GoFundMe to handle burial expenses not being covered by veteran’s benefits; as I write this, that fundraiser has already exceeded its ask thanks to the generosity of developers and gamers.
Big hugs go out to John’s family and colleagues from all of us at MOP.
EverQuest II just opened up a new type of content to players: the Proving Grounds. Each week for two weeks there’s a new competition where two teams race to complete a challenge first. Massively OP’s MJ went in to the first challenge last night with friends, and it was quite the eye-opening experience. Today the group is going to try the new pirate-themed version that just opened. There will likely be much feeding of the Death Counter! Join us live at 9:00 p.m. for a peek into this new feature.
What: EverQuest II
Who: MJ Guthrie
When: 9:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday, May 16th, 2017
Kind of a weird and fascinating week for MMOs, as an expansion has a legal showdown with a charity, a western MMO is announced, and Vvardenfell decided to come to us two weeks early. Is the industry shaping up for the most explosive June on record? It might just be!
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If you’ve wanted to get back into EverQuest II but felt overwhelmed by how far behind the curve you’d be, it’s your lucky fortnight! Now you can be totally overwhelmed by all the max-level skills instead! With yesterday’s launch of GU103 The Menagerie, Daybreak is offering all players free boosts to level 100. And this gift isn’t just for All-access members: From now until May 23rd at 2:59 a.m. EDT, anyone with an account created before April 20th, 2017, can log in and claim a free bauble that will grant 100 levels, 320 AAs, and a set of ready-to-wear gear. Brand-new accounts can also get the bauble if they subscribe. That boost will definitely come in handy if you want to participate in the new update as well as the latest expansion!
EQII’s GU103 update offers new quests (the Kunark Ascending epilogue quest and a new heritage quest), introduces familiars (unique pets that bestow powerful buffs), and opens up the first cooperative competition zones (accessed via the multi-server battlegrounds server). Called Proving Grounds, these first limited-time experiences are Race to Completion challenges, pitting two groups against each other to see who finishes first. First up is Battle for Felwithe, running until May 16th. The second, Battle Upon the High Seas, will then go from May 16th through the 23rd.
EverQuest II players know the game suffered some unanticipated and lengthy downtime this week. Daybreak says it was dealing with “technical issues with [its] servers” and thinks it has those licked, but it’s delaying GU103: The Menagerie (as well as the planned level 100 boost promo) to May 9th all the same.
The good news is that today and tomorrow, the game is making up for all that with a massive experience buff.
“To thank you for your patience and support, we’ll be activating Triple XP (AA, Adventure, Tradeskill) for ALL players and ALL servers starting now. This will run until Sunday, April 30, 2017 at 11:59PM PDT (07:00 UTC),” Daybreak writes. “In addition, we’ll be activating Double Ascension Scrolls starting on Monday, May 1, 2017 at 12:01AM PDT (7:00 UTC). This will run through Sunday, May 7, 2017 at 11:59PM PDT (07:00 UTC).
Are you cooperative or competitive in EverQuest II? Do you like to work with others or work against them? The good news is that according to the newest producer’s letter, you’ll have an opportunity to do both with the game’s new “co-opetitive” challenges. (That’s their term, not ours.) You’ll work together with your group to clear content, and in the process you’ll be hindering and trying to go faster than other groups doing the same challenge. The rewards are new loot, including the upcoming Familiars, companions that can allow you access to stat boosts and the like.
The game is also offering a free level 100 boost token for players with accounts existing before April 20th, or players who make a subsequent account with paid membership time before the promotion starts up on May 2nd. There are also plans in motion for the game’s upcoming expansion and a new time-locked expansion server with special Heritage quest rewards. So there’s a lot to look forward to on the game’s live servers for the next couple of months, whether you like being part of a team or working against a team. Or both.
Did you participate in EverQuest II’s Beast’r Egg hunt live event this past week? If not, I’m sorry to say you missed your chance; it ended a few hours ago at 2:59 a.m. EDT. However, that doesn’t mean you’ve totally missed out! And that’s the beauty of this particular live event. Today’s musing are less a guide and more a love letter to a live event done oh so right.
While the event unfolded as I participated, it struck me how practically perfect the event was. So kudos to Daybreak for this one. EQII really knocked it out of the park with this Easter-themed event. Hopefully, we can see more like this in the future, both here and — if other studios take notice — in other titles. What’s so great about it? I am glad you asked! (Though honestly, I was going to tell you anyway!) Here are the winning elements:
A small patch that’s going out to EverQuest II’s servers today is correcting one slight issue that players have had on the time-locked expansion shards. Apparently, auto-attack damage had been reduced on those servers, a problem that the patch will correct.
There are a few other adjustments in the patch, most concerning the Realm of Despair and Ruins of Kaesora raids. You might want to give the patch notes a once-over to see if any of this affects your gameplay.
In other EverQuest II news, right now there’s an event going on that is awarding double ascension scrolls until Thursday midnight. So if you’re working on fleshing out your ascension class, take advantage of this bonus while it’s running!
Today is the second-to-last day to hunt beast’r eggs in EverQuest II, and Massively OP’s MJ really wants one of these cute little cosmetic pets! Who wouldn’t want a cracked egg with malevolent little eyes peeking out following you around? So she’s going to scour Norrath trying to find herself one. She’s not even too particular about the color. Join us live at 3:00 p.m. for the holiday hunt.
What: EverQuest II
Who: MJ Guthrie
When: 3:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday, April 18th, 2017
The graveyard of Sony Online Entertainment and Daybreak Game Company is certainly full enough to be considered a threat if there was ever a zombie uprising among MMORPGs. From PlanetSide to Free Realms, there are plenty of live games that were disposed of in this grim fictional burial ground. But there are also those stillborn titles that never had the change to make or break in a live environment. EverQuest Next might be the most fresh in our minds, but go back a handful of years and you might have seen players lamenting the loss of a different promising SOE game: The Agency.
The Agency seems like a natural fit for the studio’s focus on first-person shooters and a willingness to branch out from strictly fantasy territory. Instead of dragons or stormtroopers, players in this game were to face off against terrorist organizations and dastardly spy agencies, all in the pursuit of living out the ultimate James Bond fantasy.
But instead of sitting on our desktop, The Agency exists only in a forgotten corner of this imaginary cemetery. Today, let us tenderly brush off its worn tombstone and remember what we can about this canceled spy shooter.
Why would Massively OP’s MJ have an EverQuest II-sday on a Monday? With so many anniversaries lately, she couldn’t not celebrate this one that is special to her personally: Today marks the fifth anniversary of her streaming! And what do you suppose she streamed that very first time on Massively-that-was? Why, EQII of course! Sadly MJ can’t celebrate by recreating that episode (since the Chronoportal event ended last week), so instead she’ll continue with the Heritage Quest adventures. Tune in live at 9:00 p.m. and wish MJ a happy 5th streamaversary.
What: EverQuest II
Who: MJ Guthrie
When: 9:00 p.m. EDT on Monday, March 27th, 2017
Last week we were off to a great start as we listened to the first batch of player-voted favorite MMO themes. As I said then, the results of the voting, in which I asked players to nominate up to 10 of their favorite main themes from online games, were both predictable and surprising. Nostalgia and familiarity obviously play a strong role in many of these votes, but no one was asking for objectivity here!
Today we’re going to continue our countdown to the top spot by looking at numbers 18 through 13 of your favorite MMO themes. I think there’s a good mix here, perhaps with tunes that I would have placed a little higher, but overall it’s gratifying to see each one of these make the list.
Enough jibber-jabber, let’s get to it!