Wow, yesterday was an overload of new happenings in games and lots of excitement came out of it. I’ll be making a post later about Free Realms now that the NDA has lifted (I have to jump on the bandwagon after all!) and if you’re looking for me in game you can find me as Stephanie Stardream – though both people DO have to currently be online in order to friend them.
Also, housing has gone to the test server in Wizard 101! I have really been looking forward to this. Even though I don’t play Wizard 101 as much as I’d like, I still dive in a few times a month and find it a great casual game when you’re looking for a bit of a break from your ‘main’ MMO. Plus it’s perfect for families and who doesn’t enjoy that.
Now, the main bit of news I’d like to focus on at least for this post is the new user generated content coming to EverQuest II! If you haven’t heard of it yet, be sure to check out the blog post made by Rothgar yesterday on the EQ2 dev blog. Basically this will allow players to write their own books in game, pick an appearance for them, and even make copies of them. They will be tradeable and you can put them on the broker.
This will be an amazing feature for people on role play servers to start. I’m absolutely excited about what people will come up with on those servers in specific where everyone has a tale to tell. I think the idea of collecting volumes of player-made books is fantastic. Lets say you’re an author in real life and you want to promote these little books in game, you could develop a whole marketing scheme for them. Now, I have no idea if this would take off on servers OTHER then the role play ones to any great degree. But housing enthusiasts and book lovers can certainly be found everywhere.
There’s also ascii art you could fill the pages with. Poems for friends, Christmas gifts, your own personal Norrathian stories. You could write guides for players in game, leveling guides, how to make money, a method of gaining achievement points, LOTS of things could be written within these pages for players to enjoy. Dungeon guides even if your character is perhaps an adventurer who explores the deep caverns and writes about what they discover. You could collect rare issues of books from players who left the game since their names are written as the author. You could try to convince devs or guides or GM’s to hold events where you could win a one of a kind book created by them.
Obviously my own personal excitement is pretty high. I’m all for making MMO worlds more personal and involving the players in such a way that they become a part of the world itself. Vanguard has this to some degree by allowing players to purchase actual plots of land in the game (no instances) CoX has this with their new user created missions (If I played I’d certainly be all over it).
Of course, there are down sides. As Tipa pointed out, what about gold sellers. Will they just mail you books filled with links to plat farming sites and spam. The books are created by crafters and I’m not sure what level you have to be or what sort of a hassle that may be. Until it goes live there’s no way to really tell if this will become a valid method of promoting gold sales. Also, what about those naughty books that people decide to write. There’s no real way to sensor a player written book – and I don’t think there should be. Sure, you’ve got the choice to read it or not, but do you really want 100 books of how to mate with an ogre covering the broker? Well, actually, maybe you do.
In any case, I think this is a fantastic idea.
On the down side, the next post after the announcement of these wonderful books, is the Research Assistants who are going to help you learn your master spells. I dislike this idea, a lot. I think it’s just another method of dumbing down the game, to just hand out master spells to players after an amount of time has passed for the NPC’s to “research” it for you. While you may think to yourself “well, YOU don’t have to take advantage of it then!” it will be far too easy to be left behind if you don’t have your master spells when it comes to groups and raids. On the Kithicor server there’s already a very high bar set for players. If you don’t meet a certain quota you’re excluded from a lot of going-ons. It only takes an hour or two in 70-79 to see what direction most people seem to head, every “LF” (looking for) message is followed by “must be mythical” “must have such and such gear” “must not suck”. One of the issues with the server that makes me wish server transfers were free again for a short while.
Game wise last night was pretty relaxing. My trio did Crypt of Agony which was fairly painless, we also did Obelisk (no, the shield still has not dropped) and Nocbot managed to get a few levels and some aa. It wasn’t one of the busiest days in game but it was still lots of fun and I think everyone had a good time. This weekend I believe we’re attempting to get Nocbot to 80 (he’s sitting at 76 I think) so that he can get started on his epic. I also want to finish harvesting on my mystic, so I can start her epic as well as my illusionist’. We’ll see how that goes!
I hope everyone has a fantastic Thursday in the mean time!