Following a brief delay yesterday, EverQuest II’s newest progression server is up and running.
The time-locked expansion server will start subscribers over at the earliest era of the core EverQuest II experience, after which expansion content will unlock at the rate of one every 12 weeks. The Fallen Gate FAQ has all of the information you’ll need to make a decision whether or not to roll a character on this server.
One of the key incentives for starting over on this special server is to gain rewards for all of your characters: “Heritage Quests are a staple of adventure in EverQuest II and we have some exciting rewards for those who complete them on Fallen Gate. Completion of any HQ on the Fallen Gate server will not only provide the normal reward, but also make a level appropriate version available for all your characters! Time to take those Journeyman’s Boots off the shelf put them to good use!”
Massively OP’s MJ has been slowly streaming through all of EverQuest II’s Heritage Quests (slowly, because there are more than you can shake an Iksar at!). The group is finally finishing the level 50s, and that puts them smack dab in the middle of the fires of Lavastorm, and one of the ways to try and save time is by running multiple HQs concurrently. Currently the crew is Lavastorming, working to finish all three in that molten land. Can they finish one up tonight? Join us live at 8:00 p.m. for some hot adventures.
What: EverQuest II
Who: MJ Guthrie
When: 8:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday, June 27th, 2017
Next week, EverQuest II is opening up Fallen Gate, a new “time-locked expansion server” that’s going to function a little bit differently than other progression servers have in the game’s history. Essentially, it’s going to unlock new expansions every 12 weeks and allow players to complete heritage quests to earn rewards for all of their characters across all of the game’s servers.
If you’re curious about the finer details of this new server and are weighing your decision whether to roll a character or not, you’re probably going to want to read the FAQ that the team put out yesterday that clears things up.
The team did mention that combat encounters are going to be a bit tougher on this server. “While items drops are not the same as they were in the early days of EverQuest II, both items and encounter power have been adjusted to approximate the play experience of launch. So while items have more stats, such as DPS, potency, or critical bonus, the encounters have been tuned to expect those stats, so the fight balance should be relatively the same.”
EverQuest II is no stranger to Daybreak’s penchant for creating and operating progression servers. But after all of these years, is there a way that such a server can be made in a way that feels fresh and interesting? The team thinks so.
Coming on Tuesday, June 27th, the Fallen Gate progression server is slated to open up to the public and offer players additional incentive to roll up a character. “This will be a time-locked expansion server where expansions unlock automatically. In addition, Fallen Gate will have a new twist on heritage quests. Completing a heritage quest on this server will not only provide the quest reward — but an additional reward on EVERY server you play on,” Daybreak explained.
All races and classes will be available on Fallen Gate, and the server’s expansions will unlock at a steady rate of every 12 weeks. It does require a membership to join in the fun, so free players are not welcome to participate.
After four years and over 700 MMORPG music tracks, the Battle Bards have arrived at their 100th show! For this centennial spectacular, Syl, Steff, and Syp reminisce about the most notable shows, their best soundtrack discoveries, and their favorite tracks. This super-sized show gets wrapped up with a bout of listener emails and a promise of another amazing hundred episodes!
Battle Bards is a bi-weekly podcast that alternates between examining a single MMO’s soundtrack and exploring music tracks revolving around a theme. MOP’s Justin co-hosts with bloggers Steff and Syl. The cast is available on iTunes, Google Play, TuneIn, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, and Player.FM.
Listen to Episode 100: Centennial spectacular (or download it) now:
What’s the most newbie-friendly MMO? According to Pete at Dragonchasers, it’s Final Fantasy XIV. He’s been pretty impressed by the support structure that the game has in place for new and returning players.
“I don’t usually interact with other players in MMOs (ironic, I know) but when I was randomly invited into the Novice Network I accepted,” he wrote. “It’s a pretty active channel and at least for the short time I’ve been in it, quite civil […] This experience drew me out of my shell a bit, and by Sunday afternoon I’d dug out a bluetooth keyboard so I could talk in the Novice Network more easily. Overall the way FFXIV welcomed me as a player kind of re-kindled my love of MMOs.”
In this week’s MMO blogger roundup, we have essays on LOTRO’s attention span, the thought behind soloing in online games, and first impressions of Black Desert. Read on!
Ahh… smell that? Smells like a new batch of EverQuest nostalgia, served up to us as a fresh progression server. For some of the faithful, the chance to get a hit of that nostalgia is absolutely irresistible.
“I love EverQuest,” blogger Stargrace writes. “I love the excitement that comes with playing on a progression server. I love how busy they are, and watching chat channels fly by. I love the community and the fuzzy feelings I get when I think about that time in my life.”
Kaozz explained why this server was in such high demand: “My son was baffled how many people want to play on this type of server. I’ve been waiting on one for years and keep up with the requests in the forums I have seen for so many years.”
And The Ancient Gaming Noob finds it baffling that Blizzard isn’t cashing in on these kinds of servers with World of Warcraft. “Nostalgia sells, these servers are popular, they offer something people want and, more importantly, something people are willing to pay for,” he said.
The Dreamcast was a brief but shining aberration in the gaming world. Coming along years after Sega had fallen out of its position as a top-runner in the console market, it represented the company’s last-ditch attempt to reclaim its former glory. While it failed to succeed in that respect and ultimately closed up shop in 2001 (ending Sega’s interest in the console market), the Dreamcast became a gaming cult favorite responsible for some of the most innovative titles ever made. Games like Jet Grind Radio, Space Channel 5, and Shenmue have remained fan favorites long after the Dreamcast’s demise, which shows the legacy that these dev teams left behind.
But perhaps the Dreamcast’s greatest gift to the gaming world wasn’t crazy taxis or space dancing but a surprisingly forward-looking approach to online gaming. In 2000, the Dreamcast took the first steps to bringing an online console RPG to market, and while it wasn’t a true MMO, it certainly paved the way for titles like EverQuest Online Adventures and Final Fantasy XI.
It was bold, it was addictive, and it was gosh-darned gorgeous. Ladies and gentlemen: Phantasy Star Online.
Your favorite game is going to die. I wrote about that. Some games are never even going to get to launching in the first place, unfortunately. But then there are these titles: games that went the distance when it came to development, marketing, promotion, testing… but somehow didn’t quite manage to stick the landing past that. These are the games that, in Transformers terms, are the hi-then-die cast of the MMO space.
That doesn’t always mean the games are bad, mind you. Some of these games were great fun. But through a combination of business model issues, publisher issues, player population, and just general weirdness, these titles couldn’t make it to a year and a half in the wild. Heck, some of them couldn’t even make it to a year and a quarter. And if you want to peruse this list and wonder why all of these titles are gone but Alganon is somehow still operating… well, we’re just as confused as you are.
One of EverQuest’s progression servers stands at the threshold of a major step into a larger world. The population of the Lockjaw shard is currently voting on whether or not to unlock the Planes of Power expansion for the entire server. If a majority votes yea, then this content will open up next Monday, June 12th. If not, voting will recommence every two weeks until it passes.
This past May, EverQuest opened up a new type of legacy server named Agnarr that will only feature content up through the Lost Dungeons of Norrath expansion. Agnarr had a rough launch but has settled down since then. The game is currently holding a sweepstakes for players on this server to win a time-locked server adventure pack.
Amazon Game Studios continues to lure talented developers away for its new multiplayer projects. Sebastian Strzalkowski became the latest to defect to the new studio, saying that he is joining the San Diego team after 13 years of work at SOE and Daybreak.
Strzalkowski’s portfolio covers a wide swath of Daybreak projects, including being art director for H1Z1 and having worked on Free Realms, EverQuest Next, and Star Wars: Clone Wars Adventures.
“Grateful for 13 rewarding yrs at SOE/Daybreak, honored to work with such talented folks,” Strzalkowski posted on Twitter. “Starting new job @AMZNGameStudios later this month!”
As Ashes of Creation takes aim at the $3M line for its Kickstarter campaign, Intrepid Studios announced that it has made several significant hires to its development team, some of which come from the Daybreak fold.
The hires include Lead Economic Designer Rocco Scandizzo (Psyop Games), Lead Programmer Kevin McPherson (EverQuest, PlanetSide, Vanguard, and Shadowbane), Lead Technical Designer Akil Hooper (EverQuest II, Fallout: New Vegas), Senior Character Artist Mat Broome (H1Z1, DCUO, PlanetSide 2, EverQuest), and Alex Khudoliy (Amazon).
Another interesting announcement is that Intrepid is partnering with Panopticon Labs to develop fraud detection and prevention tools for the game to make it as secure as possible.
Ashes of Creation devs will be on hand this evening at 6:00 p.m. EDT for a final Kickstarter livestream. The team also posted a brief video showing some of the winter effects in the different game environments, which you can watch below.
When does Final Fantasy become, well, final? It’s probably not going to end with Final Fantasy XIV, which shows every intention of outlasting all of us as long as it keeps pumping out Moogle plushies and Hildebrand quests. On the show today, Eliot lends his FFXIV expertise on the next step of this saga.
It’s the Massively OP Podcast, an action-packed hour of news, tales, opinions, and gamer emails! And remember, if you’d like to send in your own letter to the show, use the “Tips” button in the top-right corner of the site to do so.
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