Okay, some belated news on the last big patch.

VITAE CHANGES

Very unpopular with a lot of people who used to go and cheese Lugians at Qalabar. (This doesn’t work either.) People logged in to the sport where you used to be able to play Lugian shooting gallery from and found themselves falling about 50 feet into the middle of a pack of unamused Luggies. Of course, they had to get their stuff back, so they returned. Dead. And again. Quite amusing to those of us who didn’t camp the hill. Soon these folks were at around 50% or greater penalties and were at a loss as to how to bounce back, since to get it back before all you had to do was… cheese Lugians. Soon there was a noticeable shortage of drudges for newbies to hunt as crippled, bleeding, sallow-faced vitae victims of 12th and higher level started prowling the newbie grounds, looking to get back their vitae a few piddling xp at a time.

Here’s the difference with Vitae and how it affects play… death has more meaning now. People will eventually wise up (oh yeah right) and stop trying to go after immensely powerful creatures before they’re ready for them, since vitae can’t be slept off. It does, however, present a problem for people who have unfortunate deaths, like the case of the guy who got trapped portalling in to a lifestone and was killed by a monster about 12 times without being able to do anything. (I hope they fixed his character, but think of the pile of bodies! That makes me laugh.) That being said, although I don’t mind the changes myself, I can see how they would be a problem… some days you just can’t win. And a 75% penalty is almost as good as deleting your character.

There have been some interesting compromises proposed already… allow vitae to be slept off at a reduced rate, slow the rate of vitae accumulation from a flat 5% per death to 5% 4% 3% 2% 1% 1% etc., and some others. I like the second one myself, since you can come back from 10% and such fairly quickly, and if you get as high as 15%, you have some self-examination to do before setting out again. Vitae becomes more serious with the next problem though…

LOOTING CHANGES

Oh how people cried for this one. "I don’t want to be looted!" Was looting really that huge a problem? I have no idea… I never lost an item to looters, and always tried to recover stuff for other people. Now however, people are seeing the problems associated with only being able to loot yourself… you get trapped by a pack of groms, you get 5% vitae, return, die again, 10%, return, etc. The fact that you can’t get some friend of yours, or even a concerned stranger, to loot your corpse is a problem now. I used to love doing corpse recoveries… it was a nice break from the usual kill everything sort of activity. I have a feeling this will be changed eventually, so that the weakened dead guy can have his friends do a recovery for him, or enabling friends to loot. The same people who whined so vociferously for no looting are the same ones who are now crying over the vitae.

The one place where the looting thing was really a significant improvement was in PvP. The rule now (only loot yourselves and people you kill) brings up the possibility of larger-scale PvP battles without the problem of a bunch of non-PvPers hanging around looting the early dead. Sure, they’ll still be there of course, spectating, kibitzing, and saying dumb stuff like "LET’S SEE BLOOD", but at least they won’t be looting the armor of a guy killed in a fair team battle.

MAGIC CHANGES

Yeehaw! At first I thought that magic was suddenly way overpowered, until I realized that the economy was working perfectly and I was just used to being crippled. Here’s the significant changes as far as I can tell…

The "charge bar" works now. Casting the same spell over and over really has a significant effect on non-static variable effects and target resistance. of course, this makes the spell bar even more annoying, as you put more and more similar spells on in an effort to rotate them out more frequently.

High level spells are no longer mysteriously nerfed. Well, I still get some war spells for less than minimum, but I usually attribute that to luck and the charge bar. I can also personally attest to the effectiveness of level V and VI, since Rasa’min beat the crap out of me with it. It did make an impression.

Newbie spells are now part of the economy. I heard a bunch of initial whining from lower to mid level mages about this, that they were doing almost no damage while casting Force Bolt I a lot, the old staple of the mana-conscious mage. I’m of two minds about this, since on the one hand I really want there to be less mages in the world, and it should be a pain in the ass at low levels, but on the other hand I can see how horrible it might be for newbie mages in final when thousands of people are standing around saying "Zojak Quazael" to a rabbit. Maybe a staggered economy would work better, or just a little more leeway for circle I? I’m not sure… I’m having too much fun watching Frost Bolt IV spin through the air to think about it too much.

Mages no longer worship their phallic symbols. Thank god.

Oh, there is a very serious bug with war spell wands now, if anyone at Turbine is somehow unaware. I’m sure you know what I mean.

ARCHERY CHANGES

I have a feeling that the only ones who felt the impact of the changes to archery were the ones with the buggy bows. Yes, there were some bows which were doing totally incredible damage, like the confirmed 200 damage criticals that several self-righteous archers have written me about claiming I was full of shit. As for Han, he’s still getting 76 crits on soft targets, but somehow I don’t mind that as much, knowing what I do now about archery in the 30′s.

The frequency of really good bows has also dropped considerably. I found about 6 yesterday that might have possibly been good, and only one of them turned out to test OK. Don’t worry though… archery is far from nerfed, and is still the easiest way to farm enough experience to get up to about level 30 or so.

 


 

NOTE: The following section of the rant might seem to have more to do with UO than AC, but be patient… it’s a preview of what you can all look forward to from your helpful player community.

Now that that’s out of the way, let’s put our spotlight on one of the helpful AC pages linked to from the Microsoft link page… Dr. TwisTer! Why the hell this is on their list I have no idea… probably one of his 200 updaters who never have any news submitted the link and some sleepy guy at MS forgot to check it out.

A brief history of Dr. TwisTer… back in the days of Ultima Online, TwisTer claims to have been the one who discovered a way to exploit UO’s shitty code and UO Extreme to steal objects from inside a house. I know a lot of people who fell victim to this (I was one of them, I think). With this "fame" and with the popularity of sites like Bughouse and others declining, he decided to start his own k3w1 1337 bug abuse site. At the time, UO was so incredibly bug-infested that it was actually useful, in that whenever a new bug was found out, he would just post it, and then you could at least know how your neighbors were going to assfuck you that night.

It actually seemed to have a positive effect, as the UO dev team for the first time was really put on the spot about their unbelievably hole-filled code, and fixes seemed to happen a little bit faster. The importance of his site sorta went to TwisTer’s head, who was suddenly proclaiming himself a player’s rights advocate or something. Bug updates became less and less frequent on the site, mostly because there were less bugs to fix. In their place were a number of strange updates having to do alternately with (1) making his site #1 on some voting page about other pages that nobody paid attention to, (2) printing every letter from everyone that had ever been mistreated at the hands of a GM, although there certainly were a lot who had a legitimate complaint, and (3) dumb rumors about things which might or not be bugs that he asked everyone else to test so he wouldn’t have to. Things got stranger and stranger as he scratched for material to keep "his audience" interested. Eventually, there was really nothing there except some ways to exploit holes in the system to fuck up the game for others and occasional strange rants that had little to do with anything.

Now he’s expanded to Asheron’s Call.

Here’s the intersting thing… they don’t really know about any bugs at all! There is nothing on that damn page except ways to fuck the system and your fellow player ("Here’s all the level I life spells, well the ones I could whine out of people at the Shoushi mage shop , now go out there and have fun making them useless!"), some really half-assed news that everyone knew about a month ago ("You can melee a monstrer through a closed door! l337!"), and an overwhelming number of new updaters who never have anything to say except, "Hi :) I am one of Dr. TwisTer’s 300 n3w updat3rz and I will be bringing you cool stuff and news. By3!". There are no goddamn bugs at all. Want to find out why your game is crashing when you use your inventory, or why the Zproxy app stays resident after you exit the game? Better look at a real site then, or ask someone who knows. Nothing on TwisTer’s but a bunch of easy ways through the research part of the game for the incredibly lazy, and a good portion of that information is incomplete or just wrong. Not even a hint about archery!

However, TwisTer’s site and staff have grown so much now that they are a real gaming news site, kinda like the Mushroom I guess. And so, when the news about UO2 broke, they were on it right away. Oh, I mean right after Lum and Battle Vortex were on it. Here’s an excerpt from the TwisTer newsroom…

One thing I DONT like, is the fact that Lum the Mad, and Battle Vortex look like they knew about this (and got interviews with Gordon Walton, of OSI) before we did.

Aperson

Boo hoo! Waah! You know, when most "legitimate news sites" rip something off from another site, they tend to credit their source, instead of whining like a bitch. Here, watch this… I ripped the following stuff off of Lum’s forum. See? Aperson’s text is in the hot pink I most closely assosiate with his weeping, while Beau, hero of the moment from the Mu forum, gets the blessed uberflamer red text.

ROFL aperson is just so KewL

Catskills Player
posted 09-24-1999 01:42 AM

"One thing I DONT like, is the fact that Lum the Mad, and Battle Vortex look like they knew about this (and got interviews with Gordon Walton, of OSI) before we did."

hahaha like Gordon would of done an interview with Twister. IMO it is so much funnier when Twisters cronies speak like idiots. Dr T has some real winners over there .

Aperson – DrT
posted 09-24-1999 01:56 AM

Sure, call us what you want. You really think I give a fuck what you think about us?

No, I dont.

Im sure you have contributed to the UO Society in many, many ways, thus making you sooo much better than us. I bow before your glory, oh player of Catskills.

Now fuck off.

Kanadin
posted 09-24-1999 02:03 AM

*snicker*

what’s funny is that he take the time to post a reply about how much he doesn’t waste time caring about us…

*sigh* Ahh Twistie. You’ve got such a high-class level of cronies….

-Kanadin

Aperson – DrT
posted 09-24-1999 02:10 AM

Well lookie here, another reply!

I dont waste time caring about what you think of me… the sad fact is that I have too much time on my hands, and might aswell waste some of it replying to complete idiots bagging me.

So there, and ill reply to the next one too.

Aperson

Judge Harm.
posted 09-24-1999 03:27 AM

Maybe you can tell me why being able to cook a stack of fish is now a bug then… it was implemented in a patch a couple of months ago. Look a couple of items above your UO2 commentary on Dr.T’s

Aperson
posted 09-24-1999 05:06 AM

I know its not a bug… obviously Elriken does. A little wierd, I know.

Aperson

Beau
posted 09-24-1999 08:00 AM

Yup, you are just too cool, ‘Ape person’ or whatever your moniker is. I think my version is quite descriptive, however. The fact that you are lurking around a forum that is 90% ANTI-TwiStaRd is pretty damn sad. Of course, I’m sure you call it ‘research’.

I call it, ‘Damn, OSI won’t talk to US, so we’ll just steal from Lum. It’s not yet illegal to plagiarize on the web, is it? We can claim this shizzit as our own, right? I mean, the Mushroom can do it, so why can’t we?!’

Look, monkey boy, Ape Person; go back to digging up ‘bugs’ from your bretheren. Finding and reporting ‘bugs’ is your job, right? I hear the lice found on the lower back and scalp of others of your tribe are quite tasty. Make sure to carefully inspect every carcass you find for maggots, as I see you are still looking for more updaters.

-Beau, who just wants to see more of "Ape Person’s" poor grammar and punctualization-

Beau, you have learned well my son. 8P After Aperson dried his eyes on his pink lace hankie and stopped sniffling, he then made a pretty definitive statement on the purpose of Dr. TwisTer’s site and how it contributes to the online gaming community.

I love you all, but I get the feeling you dont love me back =(

Aperson – DrT
posted 09-24-1999 08:29 AM

So, I guess that means you won. Well, quite frankly, you did!

Because, as you all know, im a stupid 15yearold K3Wl D00D. So, I must suck.

Think that, I dont care. Ill go on posting, and hopefully every bug I post will hurt your gaming experiance. Cause yall deserve it.

Adios,
Aperson
DrTwisTer Network

Arcadian Del Sol
posted 09-24-1999 08:31 AM

Actually, don’t you already have to make that pledge when you sign on with Dr. Twister?

Right after swallowing?

——————
Brother Abbot, Cult of MOI

Beau
posted 09-24-1999 08:40 AM

Thank you, Ape-Person…

Now please go back from whence ye came.

Jegran D’arthe
posted 09-24-1999 09:10 AM

hmmm I must have missed something….ahh well go back to your cubby hole and go play on Dr T’s jock some more. Seriously though I doubt you can ruin my game play, I tend to ignore insignificant ignorant buffoons like you you.

Lovingly yours,

Jegran

The Old Sage
posted 09-24-1999 10:34 AM

"Think that, I dont care. Ill go on posting, and hopefully every bug I post will hurt your gaming experiance. Cause yall deserve it."

But I thought the mission statement of Dr. T’s site was to post bugs so the Dev Team would be forced to fix them, thus IMPROVING our gaming experience. Hmmm…..

The Old Sage

Nosfentor
posted 09-24-1999 10:37 AM

Yeah, Twister is out to save us in much the same way that OSI pledges customer service.

 

This is what we have to look forward to. Frankly, I think the AC dev team has so far been pretty damn on top of things this beta, and the openness of it means they don’t get much slack, if any, since their testers can make up dumb rant pages and tell the world about how things are going. So what is there left to do for the feeble Dr.? That’s right… I will soon expect to see a full spell list, alchemy list, what steps you take to get the SoLL without trying too hard, and basically everything else that could possibly make the game "winnable" by assholes, while making it "not fun" at the same time.

Oh, just in case you think I was kidding about the AC news page, here are some other excerpts…

A new program has been released to track and maintain information regarding all of the spells in AC. You can download it exclusively right here on the DTN. Tell a friend, and get them to come and take a look at it… If you want information regarding spells, then this is the program for you.

All of the recent news stories have been archived, but I have been experiencing problems with the archives themselves. All of the old news items should be available for viewing in just a few days. Please be patient. Thank you.

It seems that not only was the news erased from the site, but the admins that were updating, their names and passwords were also erased. For this reason, we need to set that up again. I haven’t received any mail from you yet, so if you still want to update, please email me back with your name and passwords. Also, we may have room for two more reporters. If you would like to update this site, please let me know.

I wasn’t ignoring you and going back to EverQuest, well not totally. As the good Doctor pointed out we had a small glitch with the script and lost the passwords. But I’m back, I’m still looking for spell lists, and any In Game events anyone has planned. Also I’d like to welcome our new members, hopefully we can keep this show rolling.

Greetings. I too just wanted to jump in and say hello to everyone. I will be helping post AC news to the site. My updates won’t be limited to bug reporting, as I think that good commentary can be appropriate at times.

I will also try to get an interview I did with Tegehel posted (once the suits at Turbine/MS okay it). This may or may not happen, since the interview was done 2 months ago and it still hasn’t cleared.  Until then, keep the faith.

Yo ;). I’m just posting to let you all know that I’ll be helping the doctor with a few Asheron’s Call updates on this page. Some of you may know me from The Pluggers guild in UO? Anyways, start submitting bugs etc asap! I’ll try to keep everyone posted

Yes, I feel dirty looking at the page, but I do it so you don’t have to.

For further information regarding this fantastic new hotbed of month-old information, game killing spoilers, and CGI updater problems, please check here (link dead). If anyone wants a direct link to the best bugs and giveaways EVER, click here now!

By the way, I still think a randomized system by player for research would castrate the ability of losers like these to destroy the magic system yet again *cough*.

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