The Great Nerfing of the Rangers

What’s the Big Deal?

By: Savanja

So. How bout them Rangers?

Nope. Not talking sports, not that I know much about those either, but I am speaking of our very own Everquest II Rangers.
Ya know, the ones that are all pitching massive hissy fits at the moment?

I don’t play a Ranger. I have never played any of the scout classes, just never was my thing. But even so, it’s hard not
to notice all the hoopla and drama around the recent class changes in Live Update #20. So, what’s the big deal? I was given
the oh so fun assignment of finding out, so off I went to scour the Ranger forum, check out the LU info, and hunt down all my
Ranger pals to interrogate. I’m totally like a Magnum P.I., only not as hairy.

I think most of us have things about our chosen class that we would wish to change. Even myself, as a Monk, of which I would
consider being one of the lucky classes that have seen very little change over the evolution on EQ2, I would still like to see
a more effective group taunt. Yeah, that’s about it. Scary, huh? Monks are a pretty balanced class; you Rangers should play
them instead.

But sometimes, especially when drastic changes happen, it can completely throw off a class. This happened to me with the
fated LU #13. I had a Berserker that I had previously just loved playing. Unfortunately, the changes were too much for me.
I didn’t like how my Zerker played after the LU, and she was deleted. Not an easy thing to do with a character that one has
invested in, but I truly did not see myself ever being able to feel that same thrill with the way she played.

Now that character was only in her upper 20s. Quite honestly, if that happened with my Monk, now level 61, I’d be devastated.
There would be rants, ravings, temper tantrums, and general wrath and misfortune being rained down upon the devs by this
Monk chickie. Err, well. It probably wouldn’t be THAT bad. I’m not a complainer most days, but I’d pout and look really
angry for a while, and I’m certain that it would make someone somewhere feel a little bad, maybe. As players, we kind of
get used to how our class feels. We get comfortable in our virtual skin. I like having my UI a certain way, I like knowing
what each of my abilities does, and I like knowing the depths and limits of my skill. Messing with that, well, it would turn
my gaming world upside down. So I can sympathize with anyone who has had this happen to his or her beloved class. It stinks.
Not to say that sometimes a little tweaking, or dare I say “nerfing”, of some classes is not needed. I think sometimes it is!
When a class is clearly over powered like, oh say the Swashies for example, then they should totally be taken down a notch.
No one should be able to solo yellow ^^^ mobs. Ever. Unless I can too.

Okay. So like I said, I know next to nothing about the Rangers. So I thought the smartest thing to do would be to ask a
couple of our local Rangers about the changes. I gathered a few questions together and sent them off to a few that I felt
were eloquent, and knowledgeable about their class. They all gave very in depth answers, and were all a great resource for
information for me. I truly wish I could use the entirety of their responses in this article, but for readability, I’ve taken
the highlights of their responses to share with you.

Savanja: First, I'd like to know what made you decide to play a Ranger, and what your favorite aspects of the class

Kaeros: I could write whole pages on that question alone. :) I've played a lot of RPGs and similar fantasy
games, and if there's an option to be a ranger, I'm a ranger. Always have been, since back when I first played D&D as a young
kid. So creating a ranger as my first EQ2 character was a no-brainer, and I did so when I first tried the game out over a year
ago. I didn't know how the ranger concept would manifest in this particular game, but I knew I had to start with my favorite
class and see how SOE interpreted it. I've always liked the association with nature and the outdoors, the solitary nature of
rangers, and the kind of mystique that surrounds those who prefer to live outside settlements and normal society.

My favorite aspects of the class in EQ2 are almost too many to name. I love playing an important, but indirect role in a group
or raid; a ranger can have (or could have) a big impact on the 'bottom line' - killing the mobs - but they don't play a spotlight
role like a tank or a healer does. While we do need to pay attention to our allies, we aren't relied on to manage aggro and
general threats, or to keep anyone alive and safe - until it's time for an evac, that is. ;) I like(d) doing respectable damage -
the heavy artillery role is a lot of fun. I like that we bring some useful scout abilities, like evac and even tracking.
Our utility is a subject for a different discussion, but what little utility we get is fun to have, even if it isn't unique
to our class.

Bongotezz: I first played a ranger in EQ1. The first and only character i rolled up was
a ranger in EQ1. I liked the idea of having to use weapons and having spells
too. We had decent dps but nowhere near a wiz. I’ve always been a fan of
the solo guy that can survive on his knowledge of the outdoors, have great
skill with a sword and be a great hunter. I liked the speed and stealth that
the ranger class offered. They had good variety in a single class. So when I
got EQ2 the first character I rolled up was a ranger. There were some
similarities but a lot of differences. It wasn't until I started getting my
arrow combat arts that I started to love my ranger.

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Last Updated: Mar 13, 2016