The Before the Shadows Mini Expansion Arrives in LOTRO

Lord of the Rings Online is getting an expansion of sorts today.  It has been dubbed a mini-expansion, but it is some new content for the game.  So welcome to the Before the Shadow… expansion… thingy.

Before the Shadow and after the summer

You will have to pardon my lack of effervescence over the event.  I am not down on LOTRO in particular and there is always part of me that is happy to see the game carry on and thrive.  But I have also never played it beyond the Siege of Mirkwood expansion and likely never will, so there is a bit of detachment there as well.  I will remain forever between Bree and Moria, content with having seen that stretch of the game through several times.

And I am in a bit of a mood about the eventual level of absurdity that PvE driven MMORPGs end up going through to continue to drive more content, more levels, more skills, more mobs, and more whatever.

Though, at least the new content seems to be looping around to the old places I might recognize, even if I will never be in the level range to run it.  From the description:

Reveal the mysteries of the One Ring as you venture through the reedy fens of Swanfleet and the moors of Cardolan.  Journey alongside Boromir to Rivendell, and run afoul of the Witch-King and Nazul in their pursuit of “Baggins” and the peaceful land of the “Shire” as shadow begins to pour forth from the land of Mordor.

So it sounds like we’re getting a bit of a prequel adventure, which is to be expected I suppose.  There is only so far you can go once you’ve thrown down the dark tower… though I don’t think we’ve scourged the Shire yet.  But they’ve added some areas to the Shire, so maybe we’ll get to that at some point.

The actual meat of the expansion is fairly thin:

  • New Regions & New Early Leveling Experience
  • New Skirmish and 6-player Instance
  • New Delving System
  • New Themed Missions Wrapper

I guess I could try the new early leveling experience.  We shall see.

And the content is just $20, which is a pretty reasonable price in this day and age if what is on offer appeals to you.  You can, of course, spend MORE than $20.  That is always the way.

Before the Shadow pricing options

So it goes, the game continues to expand.  It is as though the Wall Street saying, “If you’re not growing, you’re dying” is true.

Related:

Arrival in Dalaran

Citizens of Dalaran! Raise your eyes to the skies and observe!

I have arrived!

Okay, maybe I’m not up in the skies yet, but I made it to Dalaran with my first character.

The map of the city

A problem with showing up on day one for Wrath Classic attempting to play four characters, none of which were higher than level 68 at the time, is that you tend to be a bit behind the curve when it comes to leveling up.

By the time I had my group of four all up to level 70 I was already competing in the two starting zones with level 72 alts on flying mounts zipping between objectives and dropping down on harvesting nodes as I slogged around on the ground.   You see, while you need to be level 77 to unlock cold weather flying in Northrend for your first character, you can buy it and pass it on to your alts as long as they’re level 70.

Anyway, that wasn’t the big problem.  The big problem was that Northrend is kind of an annoying place to play when you’re stuck in the first few zones without easy access to a real city with a bank and all the other facilities.  I left my hearthstone set to Shattrath on my characters because it has the basics and portals back to the major alliance cities.

So visiting the bank generally means stoning back to Shat, taking a portal to either Stormwind or Ironforge, then taking the boat from there to get back to Northrend, a bit of a trek at times.

Because of this I decided to push forward with one of my characters and get to Dalaran.  That means getting to level 74.  Irondam, my Deathknight, was my choice.  Despite having been barely level 66 when Wrath unlocked, he is fun and hilariously OP for overland questing solo.  I made him the glyph that removes the cool down on the death grip skill on a kill than generates honor or xp, so he can basically run around grabbing mobs he needs, chain yanking them away from their friends, who don’t notice half the time.

With that I managed to work my way through Borean Tundra and Howling Fjord and well into Dragonblight before I finally hit 74.

On leveling it was time to recall to Ebon Hold to train up skills.  Then the hearthstone and portal route back to Stormwind to take the boat to Borean Tundra to start looking toward traveling to Dalaran, because I honestly had no recollection about actually getting there back in 2008.  With Cataclysm‘s arrival you just got the Dalaran flight point by default so there was no issue.

So I opened up the map and was wondering the best route to take to Crystalsong Forest, above which the city floats, having some idea that maybe there was a quest down there that would unlock the teleporter gem down in the forest that brings you up to the city.  That was going to be some travel and probably some sort of quest… I was settling in for what I expected to be some effort.

And then I noticed a guy at the Inn had a new quest for me.

Pssst… hey, you wanna go to Dalaran?

The quest was to go to Dalaran and speak to somebody.  I didn’t bother reading the quest text… because of course not.  And then, wanting to document this epic journey I clicked on him again to get that screen shot and got this dialog from him,

I guess there will be no epic trip

So I clicked on that and I was in Dalaran.  I have no memory of the whole thing being that simple… though there is a distinct possibility I somehow did it the hard way back in 2008.

Yes, there was a little quest to run to unlock the teleporter from Crystalsong Forest, but the first thing I did was get the flight point, connecting myself to the rest of the places I had been so far, and ensuring I could get back in case I messed things up somehow.  I have that ability.

All flight points lead to Dalaran

Meanwhile, being in Dalaran was… just kind of normal.  Unlike the ongoing, “Oh yeah, I remember that!” experience I have been having out in the zones so far, Dalaran itself was completely familiar.  That is likely because I have probably spent more time in Dalaran than any other city in the game.  Hell, they moved Dalaran so it could be the main city in the Legion expansion.

There were certainly some old school bits to it, like the portals back to the main cities.

These get taken away with the Cataclysm pre-patch.

And now my Death Knight needs to carry on.  The next goal is 77 and the unlock of Cold Weather Flying.

Soon it will be Zoidberg’s turn to fly!

Then, if I can scrape up the gold, I can be the guy with lower level alts able to fly… and then they can fly on up to Dalaran and get the flight point there on their own.

Addendum: I wrote this and then later in the day we went to Star’s Rest and Ula got teleport to Dalaran at level 72.  Them mages.  But she won’t get portal to Dalaran until 74, at which point alts can jump in.

Star Trek The Motion Picture

HBO Max sent me an update that included a tidbit about them now having all of the Star Trek film franchise available on their streaming service.  This seemed like it might be an opportunity for a movie marathon at our house.  My wife and I do that now and then, watch some series of movies like Star Wars or Harry Potter or James Bond from start to finish.

And when I asked her if she was up for it, she said she was.  We’re still waiting for Andor to get a few episodes ahead and we’re about done with most other things we’ve been watching, so it seemed like a good distraction, and it had been a while since we had done one of these.

Of course, the Star Trek movie franchise definitely has its ups and downs.  We said we were up for it, but we will have to see how far we get.

The first in the series is Star Trek: The Motion Picture, the 1979 debut of the franchise on the big screen.

Star Trek: The Motion Picture

This was a big freaking deal to me back in 1979, and my friend Chris and I, both big Star Trek fans, went and saw it at the Century Theaters… the same place I saw Star Wars for the first time in 1977… and, hrmmm… the memories are a bit faded.  On the one hand, I know we were into it in our own way.  On the other, we didn’t go back and see it again… and I had seen Star Wars multiple times in the theater when it launched.

Honestly, I cannot remember if I had sat down to watch the whole thing since its debut back then.

So my wife and I settled in to watch it.

It isn’t great.

It isn’t completely horrible, but I can see why I never went back to watch it again.

As I said, at the time, Star Trek landing on the big screen was a big freaking deal, and not just for some teenage boys in what would become Silicon Valley.  The original series had been cancelled after three seasons back in the mid-60s, but had gained such a following that it was almost continuously on somewhere in syndication.  There was a plethora of novels featuring the crew of the USS Enterprise, and an animated series that tried to fill the gap, but none of it was enough to satisfying the fans.

This was the level of Star Trek that was sustaining us on computers

I know very little about how the film came to be (and avoided reading up on it to keep my impressions distinc), but my speculation, having watched it again, is that the success of Star Wars in the theaters and Battlestar Galactica on TV shook the franchise loose and got people looking to run with it again.  The problem seems to be the lack of a decent script.

What they ended up with was basically an retread of an original series episode, writ large to be a full film… and it wasn’t enough.  The episode they cribbed from had enough material to fill out the 45 minutes required, but the script had to pad that out to two hours.

So we spend a lot of time… a whole lot of time… basically looking at cool visuals.

And I get it, 2001: A Space Odyssey made it on that, and part of the appeal of Star Wars was the work of Industrial Light and Magic and the images they created for a galaxy far away, so there was pressure on the production team to deliver a stellar look that would compete.

This first Star Trek film is just filled with very slow, almost set piece “Hey, look at that, isnt’ that cool!” moments of the new Enterprise, the space dock, the ship interiors, some Klingon ships (and their interiors), and of course, the spectacle of V’Ger.

It is all very pretty.  It looked good on our TV.  It probably looked even better on the big screen back in 1979.  The story just doesn’t do very much with it.  It doesn’t use, make interesting, or deliver on the promise of the effects in the film.

Nor does it do very much with the characters.  In the absence of a solid story, the original series used to lean heavily on the cast to bring the stories to life, to add emotion, to get us invested.  It is fun to mock Shatner these days, but his performances back in the original series are part of what gave it life.  He was the embodiment of the confident, aggressive optimism of the United States before we soiled ourselves and lost our way over Vietnam.

The whole thing felt stretched thin, not enough material to fill the time which lead to gratuitous use of good, but neither exciting not world beating, moments of special effects.

But here’s the thing… it was enough.  It did well at the box office, which demonstrated the pent up demand at the time for more Star Trek.  That got us six movies overall based on the original series, another four around Star Trek: The Next Generation, and three more as a reboot of the franchise.

It is never going to make my favorites list, but it served its purpose.

My wife wasn’t big on it either, so there is some question as to whether or not we’ll carry on.  But if we do, the next on the list is Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.  That started the trend of even numbered titles being the “good” ones, as well as getting the crew in better uniforms.  (Did I mention the uniforms in the first movie kind of sucked as well?)  But it might possibly be the most overrated in the series as well.  It has been years since I’ve seen it, so we’ll have to see.

Blizzard Resurgent in Q3 2022

The Activision Blizzard Q3 2022 financial were delivered at the start of the week, but I had some much other stuff queued up that I am only getting to them now.  Also, the whole financials routine remains very low key because the company believes that the Microsoft acquisition means they don’t have to put in the effort for the public, just their new overlords.

Activision Blizzard

The overall company reported revenue of $1.78 billion, up from the $1.64 billion earned in Q1 2022, but still well off from the $2 billion a year ago in Q3 2021. Blizzard, once again, was not the problem this time around, with blame landing on “reduced engagement” with Call of Duty on the Activision side of the house.

Blizzard itself was up, ringing in $543 million in revenue for Q3 2022, up from the $401 million in Q2 2022 when Diablo Immortal gave them a boost, and the largest quarterly numbers in well over a year.

The company has the Diablo Immortal launch in China as well as the run up to and launch of Wrath of the Lich King Classic to help buoy its numbers, as well as pending anticipation for the Dragonflight expansion.

Blizzard highlights from the financials:

October 4 saw the global launch of Overwatch 2, with a free-to-play model designed to allow more people than ever before to experience the acclaimed team-based action game. Over 35 million people played the game in its first month, including many who were new to Overwatch. The expanded community is engaging deeply, with average daily player numbers for the first month of Overwatch 2 more than double that of its acclaimed predecessor. Player investment is also off to a strong start, positioning the title to be a meaningful contributor to Blizzard’s business in the fourth quarter. Blizzard is looking forward to delivering an ambitious slate of regular seasonal updates for Overwatch 2 that introduce new characters, maps and modes, including the game’s much-anticipated PvE mode planned for 2023.

In the Warcraft franchise, the September 26 release of World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King® Classic contributed to a strong increase in WoW reach and engagement at the end of the third quarter. On November 28, Blizzard will release World of Warcraft: Dragonflight, the innovative next expansion for the modern game, as the team increases the cadence of WoW content for the community. Elsewhere in the Warcraft franchise, mobile title Warcraft: Arclight Rumble is progressing well through regional testing.

On mobile, Diablo Immortal expanded its global reach with a strong launch in China in July. The title reached the top of the download charts and has ranked in the top 10 grossing mobile games in China since launch. Around the world, Diablo Immortal is being supported with major new content, features, and events aimed at keeping the community engaged. Meanwhile, work on Diablo IV and its substantial ongoing post-launch content continues to progress very well ahead of its launch planned for 2023.

Blizzard’s third quarter segment revenue grew double-digits year-over-year against a year ago quarter that included the release of Diablo II: Resurrected. The third quarter benefited from the recent launch of Diablo Immortal, while Warcraft franchise net bookings were stable year-over-year. Segment operating margin was lower year-over-year, due to marketing investment to support the strong release slate and the shift in the mix of business in the quarter.

Currently, we have licensing agreements with a third party covering the publication of several Blizzard titles in China. These agreements, which contributed approximately 3% of Activision Blizzard’s consolidated net revenues in 2021, expire in January 2023. We are in discussions regarding the renewal of these agreements, but a mutually-satisfactory deal may not be reached. We continue to see substantial long-term growth opportunities for our business in the country. The co-development and publishing of Diablo Immortal is covered by a separate long-term agreement.

So they should have some good news coming in Q4, with Overwatch 2 and Dragonflight launching, which will help boost numbers even further.  Quarters with a WoW expansion launch tend to be peak financial moments.

Even MAUs have climbed up.  They keep an eye on that over at Massively OP but, as both I and they agree, MAUs are still a bullshit metric used to obstifcate what is really going on with titles in the company.  MAUs may have hit 31 million in Q3 2022, but a subscribed WoW player and a free Diablo Immortal player have considerably different effects on the company’s actual bottom line.

Then there is that last paragraph from the Blizzard notes about the licensing agreements in China, which highlights the problem with MAUs.  In Q3 2022 they were up, no doubt in large part due to the launch of Diablo Immortal in China, but the China market contributes just 3% to the company’s revenue.

Remember that.  Blizzard beshat itself over the Blitzchung incident to make sure they held onto that 3%.  Granted, we have learned since then that kow towing to China was only one of their sins.  But the upshot it that any MAU counts that include China are a doubly garbage numbers.

And all the while Activision Blizzard is whistling a happy tune about being purchased by Microsoft, something that is not a done deal yet.

Related:

Friday Bullet Points on Veterans Day

It is Veterans Day here in the US, though it was Armistice Day at one point because my grandparents used to call it that.  It is a day set aside to honor those who served in the armed force, which includes my brother, who managed to serve in both the army and the navy.  There is a story in that, but it his to tell.

For the first time I can remember I get the day off.  Most companies in the US give you the day off after Thanksgiving and if you ask them about Veterans Day HR will tell you that the former is a stand in for the latter.

Anyway, I will probably spend much of the day looking for a car to buy… another story in that I might get around to telling.  In the mean, there are a few small items I want to cover.

  • Crowfall Going Offline

Well, that didn’t go so well.

Is this even still their logo?

Crowfall, which raked in $1.7 million in their 2015 Kickstarter campaign, then shipped back in July of 2021, only to have to find a new home at Monumental last December, where additional funding was expected to improve the title, has decided go offline on November 22nd for a rework.

From the official announcement:

Over the past few months, we’ve been evaluating the current state of Crowfall. One of the biggest challenges has been the sheer amount of development effort required to build new campaigns and keep the game running daily. In order to refocus our efforts from live operations to development, we have decided to take the Crowfall live service offline for the time being.

On November 22, 2022, at 11 AM CST Crowfall will go dark, and the game servers will be unavailable. Until the service goes offline, take this time to try out all of the cool buildings, mounts, and emotes for free in the Crowfall store.

We’re going to use this time to map out the future of the game. We have yet to determine what that looks like, but we are investing in and rethinking every part of the game – from the core technology and tools to art, design, and gameplay. Nothing is off the table.

We’ll share the plan with the community as it shapes up.

It is not impossible it will comeback better and find success.  Some titles do come back.  Multiple times, if you count Hellgate: London.  But it is a rare thing.

  • New World Spike

New World has been enjoying a bit of a revival with the Brimstone Sands update that launched last month.

Brimstone Sands

But the real win seems to have been the fresh start servers they launched, letting players get that new New World world smell in their nostrils, boosting concurrent player counts on Steam beyond the 100K mark for the first time in almost a year.  That is still well shy of the 900K peaks of launch, but is much better than the doldrums that the game has been in for most of its run so far.

I have always said that half of the draw of retro servers of the sort we see with EverQuest or WoW Classic is the chance to start anew in a fresh world.

  • EverQuest II Anniversary Mount

I mentioned the EQII 18th anniversary already this week, but it was only after I had written and posted that I got the email about a special mount for players as part of the celebration.  The… uh… Stomposaurus Thunderstrider is available for all players for 1 silver from vendors in various cities.  I got mine out in the Frostfang Sea… or New Halas… or whatever that place it.

My own Stomposaurus

The mount will be available until November 22nd.  Details about where to buy the mount are in the 18th anniversary round up post on the EQII site.

  • Retroactive Recruitment in EVE Online

The recruit a friend option in EVE Online will get the friends who click on your link a quick 1 million skill points, a non-trivial amount when you’re just starting out.  But what if they made their account and forgot to click the link?  CCP has added retroactive recruitment.

When somebody clicks on your link and lands on the account creation page, there is now an “Already Have An Account?” option at the bottom of the form that lets you just log in and collect the reward… so long as you have not been recruited previously.

one meeelllion skill points

I have five accounts and, as it turns out, four of them were never recruited, so I just added 4 million skill points to the New Eden ecosystem.  I was even able to cross-recruit between two accounts.  What a country!

  • WoW Character Stories

Blizzard has been trying to build up hype for the upcoming World of Warcraft Dragonflight expansion and its own 18th anniversary in a number of ways.  One them is on Twitter.

Yes, Twitter is a spectacular dumpster fire as Elon Musk… very much the Tech Trump these days… careens from one bad move to the next.  However, the site is still up and running and honestly probably more popular at the moment due to the complete debacle unfolding as people discuss it on the site.  It is as if the passengers on the Titanic suddenly began discussing and debating maritime safety regulations, the effects of hypothermia on the human body, and the correct method of filling and deploying lifeboats, with great vigor.

But I digress.  If you tweet at the @Warcraft account with your WoW Character name, server, and region, along with the hashtag #WarcraftStory, a bot will reply to you with an image and a little tale about your character.  So I did it with Vikund, my main of mains, and got this.

Vikund, pet battler

The algorithm it uses will draw from the database the most rare or outstanding of your achievements… based on a list of possible options… and throw that back at you.  So, pet battles were my main thing on retail I guess.

And if you don’t like the result, you can try again and it will go down the list.  So I went again and got this instead.

Vikund and his dungeon achievements

I feel like 116 is both a big and a small number.  Dissatisfied with that, I rolled again and got this.

Vikund the raider? Yeah, right!

I am pretty sure my raiding prowess is made up by maybe half a dozen LFR runs over the years and then farming old raids solo for specific pet, mount, and transmog drops.  It that even a thing anymore with the level squish?

I tried doing the story thing with alts, but since pet battles are shared across accounts, the first thing I got back was the same as my first one with Vikund.  And subsequent stories were all pretty disappointing.  But, still, it is a neat little gimmick.

I almost didn’t notice it too.  I saw Blizz tweeting about it, but figured it was something Dragonflight exclusive.  But then I saw the post about it over at Blessing of Kings and gave it a try.  I think Shintar saw my responses on Twitter and has a post of her own about the stories of her characters.

A Near Run Win in The Nexus

After last weeks test run we were back in Coldarra and ready to give The Nexus.  We failed on the last boss, Keristrasza, in that first run, but otherwise seemed to stumble through fairly well.  So we were keen to try again.

We had just one problem:  There were only four of us.  For characters, we always only have four people playing.

Beanpole wasn’t sure when he would be able to play on Sunday, so the rest of the group logged on and figured we would get things warmed up.  We went out and finished up one quest line that we had missed last week that led to a quest in the instance and, specifically, to the quest that requires the defeat of Keristrasza.

To defeat the dragon, first you must ride the dragon I guess…

Then, after finishing that up, we figured we could go into the instance and at least clear up some trash.  So we headed into the instance.  There are a couple of single mobs at the start, which we warmed up on.  Then we started the clockwise path around the instance, slaying a double, then the triple with the mini boss, then a few more groups until we were starting to get pretty far into things.

The Nexus Map

And we were doing okay.  We bypassed Grand Magus Telestra, because we barely finished her off last time as a group of five, but past here we ended up into the platforms.

More groups to fight

We managed to get past the first of those and on into the rift section of the instance.  We pushed along, having figured out a couple of things along the way, like the fact that the chaotic rifts don’t move, so you can pull the mobs fighting them to you and leave them for later.  Last time we were diving in and taking everybody at once.

We managed to work our way through to Anomalus, the second boss, up at 2 o’clock on the map.  We were not sure how well this would work out.  His fight is pretty simple.  Fight him, when he summons a rift, fight the rift and AOE the non-elites it spawns, then go back to fighting him.

We decided to go for it, if for no other reason than one of the quests we had required to stand on his platform, behind where he starts, and run a device.

For the quest Postponing the Inevitable

So we dove into it and, while the fight ran long… Beanpole is a big part of our DPS… we managed to hold on, close rifts, switch back to the boss, and stay alive without a lot of drama.  We eventually dropped him, then went and did the quest update.

Questie lets you know when everybody gets the update

From there it was back down the east side of the instance to Ormorok.  We had fought him before with a short group… specifically without Beanpole… and survived… mostly… so we felt pretty good about another run at him.

Eyeing him before we spring

This time around the fight went… better.  Pretty well, actually.  We all jumped out of his special attack and nobody died save the dog.  But, as with last time, we were denied the plate pieces that were two of the three possible drops, getting the fist weapon again.

But, every weapon is a hunter weapon, so this time Bjorid took it to see if the big agility bonus it offered would help… once he trained fist weapons.

After Ormorok we made our way back to the start of the instance and Beanpole still hadn’t arrived.  With no other plan, we went over to give Grand Magus Telestra a try.

This had been a tough fight for the full group last time, mostly due to the chaotic middle section where Telestra summons three images of herself, one casting fire spells, one frost spells, and one arcane.

And this time was no different… we had a plan to crowd control, but then it got pooched when the three images went in different directions and I managed to break CC at least twice.  The burden of pally tanking in WotLK is that I am all about the AOE attacks.  Still, we managed to hold on.  I panicked at one point and laid hands on myself when I probably didn’t need to.  But, in the end we managed to take her down.

We took a victory shot with her because we thought that might be the peak of our run.

Victory shot

She did grace us with a nice bit of loot that went to Fergorin.

Plate wrists for the pally healer

With Telestra down we really only had Keristrasza.

That seemed like a longshot, and Beanpole was nowhere in sight yet.  But we had no other plan for the day, so we headed over to poke the dragon.

Our first run was a bit of a shambles.  I forgot to jump, we were all over the place, and we were quickly defeated.

But we ran back from the graveyard, back to the instance, and got ourselves setup again.  We would give it one more try.

And the second run went pretty well.  We were all on our marks, everybody remembered to jump or move to avoid the build up of the frost DoT, and three of us had the Addon Decursive installed, which allowed a quick click to dispel any debuffs.  The whole thing was going very smoothly.

Until we ran out of mana.

I figured that might be the sticking point if we got our act together, that we wouldn’t have the damage to finish the dragon off.  And so as the mana ran out we went down for another wipe.

Another wipe in The Nexus

We were so close, with Keristrasza down to 20% before we ran out of mana and wiped.  We were wondering if there was anything else we could throw into the mix to get us over the hump when the Discord channel chimed with the arrival of a new person; Beanpole had finally made it.

He wanted to know if he was too late and I practically shouted that he was just in time.

So he got logged in and Fergorin and I ran out to the summoning stone to bring him over to the instance.  Then we had to run around and slay some mobs because he was out of soul shards, the fuel that keeps a warlock going.

Once that was done we set up before Keristrasza, got ready, and… wiped very quickly.

We were clearly not quite ready.  Beanpole needed a warm up and perhaps took the “jump” think too seriously and inadvertently cancelled some of his spell casting.

So we got ready once more.

Ready for the final go

And we got in there and… it went pretty smoothly.  With Beanpole on his game and delivering damage like only a warlock can, we were able to power through and bring down the dragon.  There was a bit of a panic as Keristrasza gets amped up at low HP, but we had enough healing to keep me going.  Dragon down, dungeon complete.

Been there, got the achievement

Keristrasza even gave us a nice loot drop.

The dragon pays out

Those went to Beanpole as a serious upgrade over his current shoes.

We took a picture with Keristrasza to mark our victory.

The team with Keristrasza

And then we realized we still had to get Beanpole a couple of quest updates.  We ran back to where Anomolous was, taking the straight route to 12 o’clock to avoid the respawns that were appearing along our initial route through the dungeon.  We managed to stay ahead, and got to the spot on the platform where Beanpole could get his quest update.

Then we skirted along the eastern side of the instance to one of the mobs we had bypassed.  Beanpole needed one more drop to finish up another quest.

Then it was out and we were done.  Beanpole did miss out on one of the quests, but otherwise we were done with The Nexus.

Thoughts on Housing as EverQuest II Turns 18

EverQuest II launched 18 years ago today, back on November 9, 2004.  It was an event and the game was very much expected to carry on before it the way EverQuest had, becoming a dominant player, if not the dominant player in the fantasy MMORPG market.

My earliest screen shot of EQ2 – Nov. 14, 2004

Yeah, that didn’t happen.  And I’ll be frank, as I was there at the time, even if World of Warcraft had launched six months or a year later, rather than just three weeks, EverQuest II was destined to be, shall we say, more of a niche title.

An ad for EQII from the August 2004 issue of Computer Gaming World

I mean, in the scope of the success of WoW at least.  If there had been no WoW, it would have been a modest success, if somewhat disappointing success.  A lot of people went from EQII to WoW, but as many if not more went from EQ to EQII and back to EQ.  Maybe they went to WoW later because, if anything WoW was the real successor to EQ, but people left EQII in droves.

EverQuest II on the cover of CGW – December 2004 Issue

Mistakes were made.  There were a lot of problems.  So many problems.  Technical issues, high system requirements, a chaotic market, crafting interdependence gone mad, no gear atonement so people would just resell their old gear, quest log problems, and just a host of core ideas that drove the design of the game.

About a dozen years back, when SOE was talking about lessons learned for EverQuest Next, I took that and laid out what appeared, in hindsight, to be the lessons learned that drove the EQII design.

It was a difficult game to play and I remember hearing about people with old machines playing the game on such low settings that basically nobody had a face in the game.

But one thing they got right, straight away on day one, was housing.

Once you got through the isle of refuge and made it to your home city… only two home cities with a bunch of oddly segregated ghettos… how did barbarians and dwarves get grouped together… you got a quest to set up your first home.

Yes, it was a crappy, shoe box sized one room apartment, but it was YOUR crappy, shoe box sized apartment.  And there was stuff to do with it.  There were quests and items in the world, trophies and such, that you could bring back to display there.

Wall of Weapons and some of my other stuff

There was also a whole profession dedicated to furniture and such.

And if you wanted to sell on the market you HAD to have a house.  That was also your store front.  And there wasn’t offline selling at first, so you had to leave your character logged on, in your house, so people could buy your stuff while you were away.  I used to log myself in, then go to work all day, come home in the evening, and find myself still logged in.

Whatever you say about the initial design of the game, they were committed to housing.

I’ve written about what makes housing feel worthwhile in MMORPGs.  There are a lot of aspects that can go into it, and some of them are subjective and also drive a lot of emotion.  Some people absolutely have to have a real physical house that occupies space that unambiguously belongs to it.  Nothing but such a literal simulacrum attempt will do, no matter the issues inherent in that. (Which exist in both the real in virtual worlds because, as any real estate agent will tell you, it is all about “location, location, location.)

EQII opted for instanced housing, which has its own problems.  But you can at least always get a place that is convenient to where you want to be or what you want to do.

And that is one of the strengths of the game, one of pillars that holds the game together in my opinion.  I have played a lot of games with indifferent housing, forgettable cosmetic ventures that add little or no value to your experience.  But whenever I go back to play EQII, and I was doing that as recently as a year ago, I always check in on my house, add new items, move stuff around.

Then I go to the guild hall, which is something else they did very well, though that took a little more time to gel into another cornerstone of the game.

So here we are, 18 years down the road.  Given that Ultima Online is celebrating 25 years and EverQuest is well into its 23rd year, 18 doesn’t seem quite so long.

Of course, on the flip side, a commercially viable online game run by a public company that is 18 years old… well, in a world where EA is a thing, that does seem a bit strange at times.  Plus I was there, playing the damn game on November 13th, 2004.  A lot has changed since then.

So congrats on another year of EverQuest II.  It at least gets to celebrate its birthday before World of Warcraft every year… sort of.  WoW is even now loudly making plans and trying to scoop up all the possible guests for its birthday on the 23rd.

At least it has more expansions than WoW I suppose.

Another year goes by and I add another anniversary post to my list.

Past posts if you are in a nostalgic mood:

The Uprising Expansion Comes to EVE Online

The big day is here, the return of the mighty, full-blow expansion for EVE Online.  It is Uprising day!

Uprising is here today

As noted back at Fanfest, CCP’s plan has been to return to the big, feature rich expansion in order to drive player interest in the game.  That has cut two ways.  On the downside, it meant extending the year of disappointment even longer, rather than giving us some features along the way.

On the other hand, interest in the game does seem to be rising nearly six month down the road from the announcement.  This past weekend the peak concurrent user numbers exceeded 25K on both Saturday and Sunday, something that hasn’t happened in a long stretch.

Anyway, a big expansion has a lot of features and I am barely going to be able to scratch the surface, so expect a lot of links out to further information.

Empires at War – Faction Warfare

The cornerstone of the expansion is the updates to Faction Warfare, long in need of some attention.  There are a range of new mechanics including the Frontlines system that is an attempt to focus the conflicts and lead to more destruction by incentivizing players to fight there.

As part of the update the Gallente Federation invaded the following star systems, which will no longer be a part of Faction Warfare.

  • Intaki
  • Vey
  • Brarel
  • Annancale
  • Agoze
  • Ostingele
  • Harroule
  • Dastryns
  • Uphallant
  • Iges
  • Covryn

New Navy Ships

I posted about this the other day.  The full set of new navy issue ships is now available in game.  They include exploration frigates, battlecruisers, destroyers, and dreadnoughts.

Heavy Assault Cruiser Rebalance

The changes to HACs was based on the following plan:

  1. Reduce heavy HAC dominance in fleet combat which has persisted since their 2017 balance pass.
  2. Make room for other ship types to step into the spotlight, such as battleships.
  3. Not nerf HACs into oblivion – find and retain healthy use-cases.
  4. Maintain HAC identity as a high-damage / heavy tank ship option.

Overall the trend in this pass on HACs has been to reduce their engagement range, perhaps in an attempt to reign in all that “kitey bullshit” they get used for.  I’ve been in a 3K m/s Cerberus spewing missiles at extreme range as we skirt past large groups of hostiles.

The biggest change is to the Muninn, the most common hull of the HAC meta, which will now be a missile hull.  Just one turret slot and five launchers now, and its bonuses are all to missiles.

But everything else got a pass, and Cerbs, Eagles, Vagabonds, Sacs, all got a range nerf.  We’re going to have to get in close to shoot things.

Navy and Other Ship Rebalance

Some of the navy issue battleship hulls are getting some tweaks as well as a few other hulls, including the Rifter, long the iconic hull of EVE Online.  Perhaps it will get used a bit more now.

The Paragon Corporation

A new NPC corporation has landed in New Eden, The Paragon.

The Paragon is the conduit through which we will be able to obtain corp/alliance logos for our ships.

  • Emblems are available for purchase at Loyalty Point Stores within all new Paragon Stations.
  • Similar to SKINs, emblems correspond to a specific type of ship hull.
  • Emblems for over 100 ship types are currently available in the first iteration with EverMark redemption rates varying by type.  The current hulls supported:
    • T1 Frigates
    • Navy Exploration Frigates
    • T1 Destroyers
    • Navy Destroyers
    • T1 Dreadnoughts
    • T1 Haulers
    • T1 Freighters
    • T1 Battlecruisers
    • Navy Battlecruisers
    • Corvettes and Shuttles

Once you acquire an emblem:

  • Purchasing a specific emblem is limited to one per character.
  • Purchased emblems are not tradeable and are immediately injected into the redeeming character.
  • A new Personalization tab on the fitting window will allow you to equip both emblems and ship SKINs.

In order to get these emblems you must run missions in high or low sec.  Missions are available in the following systems.

  • Jita
  • Ourapheh
  • Amarr
  • Dodixie
  • Hek
  • Rens
  • Amamake
  • Assah
  • Aubenall
  • Yehaba
  • Hakonen

Mission parameters:

  • During the mission, IRIS will request a specific type of ship and reward EverMarks based on that type.
  • After completing a mission, that character must wait 23 hours before another mission will be offered.
  • Omega Capsuleers will have considerably enhanced rewards upon completing Paragon missions.
  • A separate tab has been added to the wallet to track Evermore balance.
  • SKINs and emblems are now managed through the new Personalization tab in the Fitting window.
  • Ship fitting is now managed through the new Equipment tab in the Fitting window.
    • This is the default tab when opening the Fitting window.
    • All old Fitting window functionality, excluding applying SKINs, is encapsulated within this tab.

So it is great that we’ll get corp/alliance logos.  I’ll never have one on my main because the we’re always under war dec so the high sec trade hub stations are always camped and the low sec stations will be hot targets now as well.  But I might be able to manage it with a neutral alt.

(There is a whole “why not sell this and, you know, make money CCP?” discussion around this, but whatever.)

Security Status and Abyssal Filament Changes

I referred to this in a post a while back.

The issues being addressed here by CCP are:

  • Griefing of new players and low value targets
  • Risk vs Reward dynamic of Abyssal Deadspace filaments
  • Shortage of legitimate player targets in high security space

The solutions involve:

  • Limit tethering for players with low security status in Highsec
  • Docking restrictions for outlaws in high security space
  • Changing the security settings for Alpha accounts and removing the option to disable safety (“Safety red”)
  • Updated rulesets for Abyssal Deadspace filament activation

I have linked the related dev blog, but the short short is suicide ganking is a little harder, but people running Abyssal Deadspace filaments will be forced into lower security space (no running in 1.0 or 0.9 at all) to give gankers fat new targets.

New Skills

We get two new skills with Uprising, both of which have been long sought.

  • Advanced Contracting
    • +4 Contracts per level
    • Rank 10
    • 250 million ISK at NPC schools or 325 million via skills on demand.
  • Elite Infomorph Psychology
    • +1 jump clone per level
    • Rank 12
    • 500 million ISK at NPC schools or 650 million via skills on demand

I am already training the second one because I never have enough jump clones.

Visuals, Audio, and Little Things

Better graphics (some of which will cause motion sickness and will need an off button), better sound, and a lot of little fixes, like being able to clone jump without having to get out of your current ship.  We also finally get alliance ship fittings and more slots for corp and personal fittings.  There are also some fixes to career agents, including changing out a few of the dumber rewards for missions.

The list is long and I have barely scratched the surface.  But it is all there now.

7 Free Days of Omega Time and Login Rewards

For those reading all the way to down here, if you go to the New Eden Store, the in-game store, you can grab 7 days of Omega time for free per account.  I am sure this will cause a boost in online numbers.

There for the taking

You can at least grab it so you get the full set of login rewards currently available, an event which happens to run for seven days as well.

If you setup your accounts to all have the same contact email you will also get a Special Offers pop up when you log them in, if they are not Omega.

What can these be?

These are the discounted Omega time deals for alts as well as the usual “catch up” skill points offer.  In the case of one of my alts the offer was 8.1 million SP for $200.  No sale.

Anyway, the expansion is up.  Time to see what it is about.

Related

The October EVE Online Monthly Economic Report as the Uprising Expansion Looms

The Uprising expansion launches tomorrow, CCP’s attempt to generate enthusiasm in its diminishing user base by bringing back a huge content drop.  The word is that the patch notes are already 15 pages long and still growing.  We’ll see that when it drops.  There will be a lot to digest.

But before that we have the Monthly Economic Report for October 2022, which will be a nice benchmark for the state of the game before the expansion.  Yes, I know, I somehow find a way to declare almost every report a benchmark to measure something, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t true!

EVE Online nerds harder

So let’s just dive in and look at some numbers.

Production

Going down the list of the usual first three, I’ll bring out the first chart about production, destruction, and mining.

October 2022 – Production vs Destruction vs Mined

The chart shows a bit of a rise to about mid month, the a bit of a drop off. (Also, I think the legend did not get updated. It says September at the bottom, but comparing it with last month’s chart, and looking at the data, it is clearly October.)

Over all the chart data shows a total of 82.14 trillion in ISK value produced, up from 77.35 trillion in September.

The regional stats show a similar rise, ringing in at 113.93 trillion in ISK value produced, up from 108.58 trillion in September.  The usual suspects are in the top ten regions:

  1. The Forge – 18.26 trillion (High Sec)
  2. Delve – 13.44 trillion (Imperium)
  3. Vale of the Silent 13.16 trillion (Fraternity)
  4. Lonetrek – 7.72 trillion (High Sec)
  5. The Citadel – 4.45 trillion (High Sec)
  6. Cloud Ring – 4.08 trillion (BL0B and Shadow Ultimatum)
  7. Heimatar – 3.89 trillion (High Sec)
  8. Tribute – 3.07 trillion (Fraternity)
  9. Sinq Laison – 3.03 trillion (High Sec)
  10. Perrigen Falls – 2.97 trillion (PanFam)

Well, I am not sure Cloud Ring fits that description, but it was on the list last month as well, so something is going on there.

October 2022 – Production by Security Band

The production by security band chart shows null sec’s share of the production pie rising as the month closed out.

Destruction

The value of ships being destroyed in game also went up some in October, which is always a positive sign for the game.  The data for the first chart in this post show 30 trillion ISK in ships, up from 28.21 trillion in September.  Not a huge boost, but it is something.

The regional data also shows a rise, registering 30.99 trillion in ISK value destroyed, up from 27.49 trillion in September.  The top ten regions for destruction… again, if you’re paying attention you probably know half the list by now:

  1. The Forge – 2.25 trillion (High Sec)
  2. Delve – 1.72 trillion (Imperium)
  3. Pochven – 1.65 trillion (Triglavian)
  4. The Citadel – 1.51 trillion (High Sec)
  5. Metropolis – 1.47 trillion (High Sec)
  6. Lonetrek – 1.37 trillion (High Sec)
  7. Pure Blind – 1.15 trillion (Brave/V0LTA)
  8. Vale of the Silent – 1.09 trillion
  9. Sinq Laison – 1.06 trillion (High Sec)
  10. Genesis – 907 billion (High Sec)

More interesting is the break out by security band.

October 2022 – Destruction by Security Band

That seems to show low sec grabbing a larger percentage of total destruction.  Is that being fueled by the pre-expansion events in Faction Warfare?

Trade

Last month trade got is own post.  The whole Omega PLEX thing.  This month it is back to its usual place.  The velocity of ISK chart shows the effects of that sale in the upward notch in September, which you can see is not reflected on the red line, which excludes PLEX related transaction.

October 2022 – Velocity of ISK

Still, the velocity started to rise again as this month ended.  Trade itself stayed almost level in October, with 559 trillion ISK in transactions being recorded, down slightly from the 560 trillion in September and the big PLEX sale.  That is also some good news for the game.  The market is the life blood of the game and the velocity of ISK is akin to its pulse, which has been slowing down for quite a while now.

The top regions for trade were… the usual trade hubs and some key null sec regions:

  1. The Forge – 411 trillion (Jita)
  2. Domain – 37.34 trillion (Amarr)
  3. Lonetrek – 17.3 trillion (Caldari High Sec)
  4. Delve – 16.61 trillion (Imperium)
  5. Sinq Laison – 12.92 trillion (Dodixie)
  6. Metropolis – 8.8 trillion (Hek)
  7. Perrigen Falls – 8.29 trillion (PanFam)
  8. Heimatar – 6.71 trillion (Rens)
  9. Vale of the Silent – 4.7 trillion (Fraternity)
  10. The Citadel – 3.85 trillion (Caldari High Sec)

ISK Faucets

We had some news about NPC bounties in October, with CCP finally relenting a bit on the dynamic bounty system.  The set the floor amount to 100% and actually cycled the system that were stuck down at 50% to that level by the next day.  That was less than a week before the end of the month, but you can clearly see its impact on the sinks and faucets over time chart.

October 2022 – Top Sinks and Faucets Over Time

That likely means that more people were out ratting, which means more targets for hunters which feeds destruction and so on.  Perhaps CCP finally got the memo that incentivizing people to undock drives content.

That chart also shows commodities booming as well, but we’ll get to all of that in a bit.  First the top faucet totals from the big chart.

October 2022 – Faucet end of the chart big chart

The totals on that teeny tiny chart are:

  • Commodity – 45.3 46.9 trillion (up 1.6 trillion)
  • Bounty Prizes – 23.5 trillion (up 3.8 trillion)
  • Trig Invasion Payouts – 14.7 trillion (up 1.4 trillion)
  • Incursion Payouts – 10.7 trillion (down 2 trillion)
  • ESS Bounty Payouts – 10.4 trillion (up 1.6 trillion)
  • Agent Mission Rewards 3.2 trillion (up 0.2 trillion)

So things were up, save for Sansha incursions, which were down 2 trillion ISK.  People found better things to do or there were not as many handy incursions in October I suppose.  But more ISK earning means more people out doing those things.  Even agent mission rewards were up.

The in game ISK balance saw about 7 trillion more ISK come into the game when compared to last month.  But about the same amount came out of the game due to other factors.

October 2022 ISK balance

The problem is, that top number, 1,525.7, is 2.6 trillion ISK higher than the end of month number for September.  That isn’t a huge margin of error, but I remember Gevlon building a conspiracy theory about CCP manipulating the economy because of a similar discrepancy back in the day.

Still, if we take those numbers above as the correct set, people made more ISK but sinks and GMs pulled as much out, so we had a rare decline in the total ISK.

October 2022 – Money Supply

On the regional data, the top ten regions for NPC bounties were:

  1. Vale of the Silent- 3 trillion (Fraternity)
  2. Delve – 2.31 trillion (Imperium)
  3. Perrigen Falls – 1.93 trillion (PanFam)
  4. Fountain – 1.57 trillion (Imperium)
  5. Querious – 1.42 trillion (Imperium)
  6. The Kalevala Expanse – 1.23 trillion (PanFam)
  7. Tribute – 1 trillion (Fraternity)
  8. Metropolis – 980 billion (High Sec)
  9. Malpais – 975 billion (PanFam)
  10. Pure Blind – 911 billion (Brave/V0LTA)

Those are all up over last month, with the NPC bounty totals in the regional stats data coming in at 31.8 trillion ISK (bounties and ESS payouts), up from 27.09 trillion in September.  Signs are that the NPC bounty numbers will be up considerably in November.

Speaking of ESS payouts, there is the chart for that.

October 2022 – ESS Regional Stats

The big numbers at the top:

  • Main Bank Thefts – 404.1 billion (up 42.6 billion)
  • Reserve Bank Thefts – 8.76 trillion (up 1.04 trillion)
  • Total Amount in Reserve Banks – 41 trillion (down 4 trillion)

The systems being milked in the reserve bank data shows that PanFam has learned from Fraternity and has begun draining the reserve banks in the systems they hold.  Still, there were some actual big reserve bank thefts in October compared to last month’s chart, which was almost entirely milking efforts.

October 2022 – Reserve Bank “Thefts”

And then there are commodities.  CCP Estimate has given us some additional data on that front, though we’ll start with the usual commodities over time chart.

October 2022 – Top Commodity Items Over Time

This chart actually got a bit of a revamp, which did not make it easier to read, and the data for it isn’t broken up into nice columns like the region data of the produced/destroyed/mined chart, so pulling the raw data is a bit of a chore.  I had to make a real Excel formula with SUMIF.  I am surprised I remembered how to do it. (I’m just a project manager these day, so when I do more that just SUM it is an event.)

So from that data, the totals for the month were:

  1. Sleeper Components – 20.86 trillion
  2. Bounty Encrypted Bonds – 9.04 trillion
  3. Overseer Personal Effects – 7.52 trillion
  4. Triglavian Data – 5.39 trillion

That gives us 42 of the 45 trillion ISK in commodity faucets for October.

The bounty encrypted bonds are those redeemed at the NPC stations, which is distinct from the ESS robberies noted above.  Like all commodities, you have to get them back to the right NPC station to cash them in and a fair amount get blown up or sit around in somebody’s hangar.  I personally have about 50 million in bounty encrypted bonds sitting around in the Keepstar in 1DQ1-A.

Now I am going to have to track that break-out every month I suppose.  I’ll save the formula for later.

Finally, we have a new chart about Abyssal Deadspace, where people run those filaments and the value of the loot obtained this month.

October 2022 – Abyssal Deadspace Data

That puts the market value of all of the loot from Abyssal Deadspace runs in October at 21.4 trillion ISK, though only the Triglavian Data represents an ISK faucet into the game.

As for why the number on that chart shows 9.1 trillion ISK in Triglavian Data commodities looted but the faucet chart only shows 5.39 trillion ISK paid out… well, as with the bonds I mentioned, you have to bring them to the right NPC station to get your payout.  Some are no doubt sitting in hangars, others were possibly lost on the way to be turned in, the stations being in low sec.

But the chart also shows why CCP is making changes to where you can run Abyssal Filaments.  You won’t be able to run those high level filaments… or any filaments… in 1.0 or 0.9 systems after the update tomorrow.

Mining

I am going to keep mining short because it I find writing about it as dull as doing it these days.  Mineral prices have continued to climb.

October 2022 – Economic Indices

According to Angry Mustache in the Reddit thread about the MER, this is being driven by demand for Isogen, Nocxium, and Pyerite.  A shortage of those minerals is driving up production prices.  At some point CCP will notice and perhaps open the spigot a little wider on those items.

The regional data showed a total 16.48 trillion in ISK value mined, a pretty big bump from the 12.07 trillion in September.  The top ten regions were:

  1. Vale of the Silent – 729 billion (Fraternity)
  2. Delve – 713 billion (Imperium)
  3. The Forge – 705 billion (High Sec)
  4. Metropolis – 624 billion (High Sec)
  5. Lonetrek – 619 billion (High Sec)
  6. Domain – 608 billion (High Sec)
  7. Malpais – 532 billion (PanFam)
  8. Sinq Laison – 523 billion (High Sec)
  9. The Kalevala Expanse – 523 billion (PanFam)
  10. Insmother – 480 billion (FI.RE)

The mining spread by security band was:

October 2022 – Mining by Security Band

I am also giving up on posting the moon mining numbers monthly.  They were useful as an illustration of how little value there is in moon mining for a few months, but I think I made my point there.

Wormhole Movements

CCP Estimate gave us a brand new chart about wormhole imports and exports, which fits in a with a couple sections because blue loot, Sleeper Components, and mined gas are part of the mix.

October 2022 – Wormhole Imports and Exports

Angry Mustache has an evaluation of what this means in the Reddit thread discussing the MER, which I had linked at the end of the post.

Loyalty Points

Finally, the regional data has a new column that charts Loyalty Points (LPs) being earned in game.  Another big cheer for CCP Estimate.  LPs are what you earn from factions by running missions or doing other tasks for them.  They can be used to buy things from the special stores that each faction runs, though there is also a complex LPs bartering market in the game which is hard to explain, but it apparently works.

Anyway, a total of 9,473,307,417 LPs were earned in October, with the top regions for earning them being:

  1. Venal – 1,664,921,825 (Guristas)
  2. Metropolis – 1,287,415,762
  3. Lonetrek – 987,722,107
  4. Placid – 852,496,790
  5. Delve – 455,261,152 (Blood Raiders)
  6. Stain – 432,730,340
  7. Aridia – 316,010,839
  8. Molden Heath – 282,717,824
  9. Pure Blind – 268,796,170 (Mordu’s Legion / Sisters of EVE)
  10. Curse – 259,526,162

I have noted, where I can recall, which specific factions are covered by which regions.

And that is all I have.  Next month we will see the ongoing impact of the dynamic bounty changes plus what sort of effect the Uprising expansion has on the economy.

Related:

Daybreak Stakes a Claim to Another World Record with PlanetSide 2

The PlanetSide 2 team set a Guinness Book World record back in 2015 when they got 1,158 players into an FPS battle.

PlanetSide 2

I was, perhaps, a little dismissive of the achievement at the time.  That was in part because I had only a couple of years before that been involved in the battle of 6VDT-H in EVE Online that saw 4,070 players players engaged in battle, and in part because it was a staged event run by the PlanetSide 2 team for the specific purpose of setting a world record.

It is not that I don’t think it counts if you set that as a goal, but it felt a bit cheesy all the same seen through the lens of New Eden where massive fights occur through player interaction rather than dev team pronouncement.

And, as we learned later, when CCP tried to setup such a record breaking event with their EVE Aether Wars tech demo, targeting 10K live players as a goal, they only ended up with 3,852 live players with a peak concurrent count of just 2,379.

Still, that was a lot of players.  Better than an FPS record I might have mentioned above.  But it paled compared to what players in New Eden get up to at times.

Anyway, enough snark or whatever.  The PlanetSide 2 wanted to set a new world record yesterday to celebrate the game’s upcoming 10th birthday.

A call to arms

The plan was for this to take place on the public test server yesterday.  However, the PTS fell over in the attempt, so they moved it to the Emerald server where they managed to get 1,228 players on the server together.

This was another reason I was a bit iffy about the record.  Having 1,158 or 1,228 players on a SERVER together is a bit different than having that many players in a single FPS battle.  But I won’t quibble, they got the number.

Anyway, after hitting that number they made another run on the Connery server, where they managed to get 1,241 players.

So congratulations to the PlanetSide 2 team.  Op success!  Everybody who participated will get a special title to mark the event.

Now they just have to get the team at Guinness to validate the record attempt was successful and they will be in the book again.