EverQuest II + Star Wars Galaxies

  • When forum trolls write reviews...
    CVG gives EQ2's "Desert of Flames" expansion at score of 75 / 100, citing a lack of polish (but there are plenty of other Europeans playing, har har!) and a continuance of SOE's "feather ruffling" tradition of Combat Changes. Let the nastiness commence:

    Poor old Sony. Given the massive debacle that was the Star Wars Galaxies Combat Upgrade, you'd think that its developer - Sony Online Entertainment (SOE) - would steer clear of using that phrase ever again. Not so. With the release of the Desert Of Flames expansion for the underrated EverQuest II - a game easily as enjoyable as WOW, but with half the calories... Sorry, I mean players - came an all-singing, all-dancing, all-existing player-base-annoying 'combat upgrade'. SOE must be cursed.

    Yea, they're pretty much being populist WoW bastages about it. Check out CVG's EverQuest 2: Desert of Flames review for more ganky ire.
    Other links of interest:

    Tue, Nov 22, 2005
  • In a desert of flames one reviewer finds his way to the oasis.
    Strategy Informer has posted a review of EverQuest 2: Desert of Flames.

    " The Desert of Ro from the original EverQuest is back in a new and exciting form as the Isle of Ro.  Here players will find the city of Maj’dul along with numerous dangerous and hazardous areas to roam through.  Many of the themes from the Desert of Ro are still intact, but most are tweaked in some way or have been enhanced.  There are still many vermin madmen running around and many Sand Giants everywhere.  The Isle of Ro, however, is a dangerous place for beginners; it is geared towards high-level players around the level 45 and up. "

    You can read the entire EverQuest 2: Desert of Flames Review at Strategy Informer.
    Still yearning for more?

    Wed, Nov 16, 2005
  • Smedley gets podded.
    The newest PCGamer Podcast features John Smedley of Sony Online Entertainment and focuses on the recent changes to Star Wars: Galaxies.

    "John Smedley, president of Sony Online Entertainment, joins us to give
    us the latest on the relaunch of Star Wars Galaxies. As 30 character
    classes shrink to 9 and the game switches to a new action-based format,
    we get SOE’s grand strategy from the big cheese himself. If you’re one of the thousands of SWG players affected by the relaunch, here’s your chance to get answers from Sony — and if you’re interested in checking out the retooled game, here’s your best source of info on what’s in store for you. "

    You can grab the John Smedley Podcast at PCGamer.
    Still yearning for more?

    Features, Interviews
    Wed, Nov 16, 2005
  • Trial run. Trials of Obi-Wan. More trials from SOE.
    GameSpot has a 10-day trial version of Star Wars: Galaxies that includes the Jump to Lightspeed expansion available for download.

    " Gamers curious in the sci-fi massively multiplayer online role-playing game can now download a 10-day trial of the game that includes the first 10 levels of the soon-to-be-released Star Wars Galaxies: Starter Kit. With a budget price of $19.99, the Starter Kit contains the original game and the Warp to Lightspeed expansion pack, offering enough content to get would-be Wookies through the game's redesigned first 30 experience levels. For those unsure of picking up the Starter Kit, the trial version is now available for download from GameSpot. "

    You can read more about the Star Wars: Galaxies Trial version at GameSpot.
    Still yearning for more?

    Wed, Nov 16, 2005
  • A contented Jedi, or your money back.
    SOE, or "The Home for Troubled MMOs", just announced that the Star Wars Galaxies: Jump to Lightspeed expansion will be made free for longtime players who hadn't purchased the expansion. Also, a full refund will be given to players dissatisfied with the Trials of Obi-Wan expansion. And in other news, SOE devs through their hands in the air and burst into tears.

    " Beginning today, as an added bonus for our veteran players who do not yet have the Jump to Lightspeed™ expansion (and thus, space content) we will be giving you this expansion at no additional charge.  This bonus content will automatically download to you upon your next log in to the game beginning today.  After all, space is more fun with other people to enjoy it with!  May the Force be with you!"
    "However, if your Star Wars Galaxies account was in good standing as of November 3, 2005, you purchased the latest expansion pack, Star Wars Galaxies: Trials of Obi- Wan™ before November 3, 2005, and you find that these new enhancements are not to your liking, you may request a refund of the purchase price of the Trials of Obi-Wan expansion pack."

    I really hope the revamp is successful, this is becoming painful to watch. New SWG announcements at the Official Site.
    Related links:

    Mon, Nov 14, 2005
  • Everybody wants kickass, lightning-fast combat
    And I, for one, miss the days where I could turn on auto-attack and drive down the to Fast Mart for a Big Slurp. Nah, just kidding, that sucked too. Here's John Smedley on Slashdot to discuss the SWG revamp. You've seen it all before, well, except for the /. wiener attitude.

    " Q: Was there a single game element, piece of feedback, or event that prompted this re-envisioning? This is a very dramatic decision, and the reasons behind the changes seem almost as important as the changes themselves. What prompted you to give this plan the go-ahead?

    John Smedley:

    There are millions of Star Wars fans out there. SWG should be the game those players have always hoped for, a game that finally allows them to live inside the worlds and settings they know so well from the movies, the books, the comics.
    Our main goal with SWG for the last nine months has been to make the game more "Star Wars-y," for lack of a better term. Our two latest expansions, Rage of the Wookiees and the new Trials of Obi-Wan have delivered players the kind of directed, hand-crafted content that they would find in our other titles, as opposed to just having open-ended "sandbox" style of gameplay.
    The redesign comes about after hearing desires from our own players on forums and in person at the SWG Fan Fests, multiple focus groups, and our own design team's desire to create something much more grand and sweeping with the game. We have big plans for SWG in the months and years ahead, and we needed this new platform to use as a foundation for creating the vast Galactic Civil War that our players want."

    If you want to see more, go for it: Slashdot talks to Smed about Star Wars Galaxies.
    Other links you might enjoy:

    Features, Interviews
    Fri, Nov 11, 2005
  • You love us long time, we give you things.
    Sony Online Entertainment has taken Update#16 live and with it some goodies for long time EverQuest 2 subscribers.

    " - EverQuest II celebrates its first birthday by introducing Veteran Rewards!

    - Griffon tamers are seeking your assistance in the Thundering Steppes and Nektulos Forest!

    - Give the residents of Norrath a fresh look with the new SOGA character models!

    - Two new iksar scale patterns now available for each gender!

    - Crusaders, Mages, and Priests can now equip symbols in their ranged slot!

    - Carry extra ammo in quivers you can equip!

    - Using clickable items is now even easier, and food and drink get their own inventory slots!

    - Population and item improvements made in some of Norrath's deadly dungeons!

    - Can't reach your spirit shard? Now you can have your spirit restored... for a price!

    - Guild quest raids now scale according to player level and reward additional status!

    - The user interface gets a spiffy new look! "

    I could really use my spirit restored, "for a price".

    Not long enough for you?

    Thu, Nov 10, 2005
  • The force is mediocre in this one.
    GameCloud has posted a Star Wars Galaxies interview featuring Julio Torres and focusing on the upcoming revamp of the game.

    "After a massively multiplayer game has been around for a while, it
    usually gets new players via expansion packs or updated graphics. Sony
    Online and LucasArts are doing something different with their MMORPG
    Star Wars Galaxies by relaunching the entire product later this month
    with a new gameplay design in order to bring in new players. Gamecloud
    got a chance to chat with the game's producer Julio Torres to find out
    more about the upcoming Star Wars Galaxies revamp. "

    Many changes has this young Jedi to make. Do, I must.

    Still craving more? Get it here with More Star Wars Galaxies News.

    Features, Interviews
    Thu, Nov 10, 2005
  • Star Wars Galaxies to produce its own kind of Episode III
    And no, I'm not talking about the Trials of Obi-Wan expansion which launched yesterday! Julio Torres, producer of SOE's Star Wars Galaxies, announced a new round of "sweeping changes" set to hit the game on November 15th? The changes focus on making the first 30 levels "story-driven," sorting players into 9 character classes that SOE says make up "98%" of current participants' preferred way to play. Eclectic skills like "creature handling" are on the way out, however.

    We are introducing a series of game enhancements to Star Wars Galaxies this month that include both significant enhancements to the live game as well as a completely redesigned experience for new players. The primary areas of focus include combat and profession and character development. The combat depicted in the Star Wars films, fiction, and canon that we have all come to know and love is fast-paced, action-packed, and visually intense. In order to stay true to the Star Wars fiction as well as to make the combat system more engaging, we have shifted the turn-based paradigm towards a much more engaging fast-action combat system where you control every move! After receiving feedback from members of the community, conducting extensive focus tests, and evaluating the combat systems of other games in the genre, we are confident this new fast-action combat truly delivers what players, fans, and gamers have come to expect from a Star Wars experience.

    Julio Torres' Star Wars Galaxies community letter announcing the changes is posted on the official site.
    Related links:

    Thu, Nov 03, 2005
  • Like a lightsabre to the head...
    Eurogamer reviews the Star Wars Galaxies: Trials of Obi-Wan expansion. It's a pretty expansion, they say, but ultimately score it 7/10 for, you guessed it, developing $35 worth of content almost exclusively for the level 65 plus game. When someone figures out how to make the high-levellers and low-to-mid-levellers happy at the same time, it'll be huge! Oh, yea...World of Warcraft, gah.

    "So it boils down to this: the expansion is aimed squarely at the high-level ground-based combat players, and is a solid addition of content for them. That only this one group of players is catered to fully though only serves to alienate those left behind and devalues the offering overall. "

    Star Wars Galaxies: Trials of Obi-Wan reviewed at Eurogamer.
    Other links you might enjoy:

    Wed, Nov 02, 2005
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