With the 21st anniversary event offer of a free heroic character upgrade available for a limited time, I decided I should take advantage of the offer while it was around. I might scoff a bit at the boost only being to level 85, but it is better than no boost at all I suppose. And you need to be that level to use the Overseer feature.
And I wanted to use the Overseer with a character I had some connection to, which at this late date in the history of the game, is a very rare situation. I have a couple dozen characters floating around over a range of servers, but I am hard pressed to name them or when I created them.
But there was one I recalled. Dolenz, my cleric, who I rolled up last year in anticipation of the 20th anniversary. I started him fresh, went through the tutorial, and got him all the way to level 50.
It wasn’t like I got him to level 50 back at launch. The xp curve is much lighter and there was bonus xp for much of the anniversary event. But I still played him through those levels, light though they might have been, and explored a range of Norrath both familiar and not.
So I pressed the button on at the character select screen and applied the upgrade to him.
The good from the upgrade is that the game does hand you a lot of stuff. You get a set of gear… in green, so it matches the cosmetic hat I got last year, as you can see above… and a couple of 24 slot bags, which are always handy, as well as some cash, a pile of AA points, and all the spell upgrades for the intervening levels you have skipped.
The downside is… well… dealing with all of that largess is, as always, a bit cumbersome in the EverQuest UI. You have to find all the gear in your bags… you have to find those new bags in your bags, assuming you had space for all of that… and dole it out to the right spots. You get a series of packages assigned to you through the rewards interface, which always looks like you only get one of the items, since you can only highlight one, even though it says you get them all. And you do get them all. It is just awkwardly presented.
Worst of all though are the spells. The EverQuest team has always been big on handing out new and improved spells with every expansion, no matter how many levels the cap was raised, so there are a lot of choices. And this isn’t WoW, where the spells have the same name and you just get a new rank level of it. So when you are sitting there trying to figure out which spells to assign to your nine spell slots… again, the word “awkward” springs to mind.
Those are just the heals which, as a cleric, make for the longest list. And they are all at least flagged by level. And you can at least see a pattern, with “light,” “renewal,” and “word” heals being the three main flavors. But I don’t know what the difference is off hand today. And those are just the main heals, not the delayed, duration, or quick heals, much less the cures. Then there are the buffs and the damage and the utility spells.
According to my spell book, which is pretty much useless under the weight of that many spells, the total at my disposal is 393. I guess it could be worse. There are a lot of spells. Maybe that is why they only boost to level 85, they are afraid that the rain of new spells is already overwhelming enough. Who knows.
Getting mired in that for a while pretty much put the kibosh on any plans I had to actually go out in the field to fight monsters and run quests. So he’ll likely become another permanent resident of the Plane of Knowledge.
But I mostly wanted to use him for the Overseer feature. And he’ll serve for that. Though in boosting him up I did also discover that your characters, at least on the same server, share the same Overseer setup. I had a quest going with the pally I boosted years back and after I boosted Dolenz and brought the Overseer up, I found that quest in progress in the UI.
That makes sense. They have to limit it somehow. There is already talk of the whole thing being too generous, with changes coming in to keep things under control, even after the very conservative intent the team started with.
But I’ll keep poking at it for a bit. What happens there will likely be an indicator as to what will happen with the EverQuest II version of the feature, which remains a very poor cousin at the moment.