Lheo's Feedback

null1fy

Dalayan Elder
I'll add things as I think of them.

RESTRICTIONS

Let's dig in to my emboldened header:

What are the restrictions for season 1?
  • Adepts are disabled.
  • Ikisith content is not accessible.
  • Requiem of Hate and Requiem of Fear are not accessible.
  • "Special" AAs may not be purchased.
  • Cheaters will be disqualified; ie. finding and abusing ways to interact with non-seasonal characters. (There should be none)

I'm going to discuss the first three restrictions. I pulled this from Jumbers' post outlining Season 1, its rules and rewards intended for the reader (and prospective player) to prepare for with the advent of participating in the new Season.

  • Adepts are disabled.

Why was this imposed? From Jumbers' aforementioned post, I assumed two things: 1) Season 1 is a "Race". 2) Season 1 is an alternative mode to Shards of Dalaya "Base Game".

On point 1): Those who are first to get to an Adept (thus getting first chance at the monster before it begins its timer) are rewarded for being at the forefront of the race. Certainly, it potentially provides unfair advantage in some way in that it's a novel item (or item slot) that is otherwise difficult to obtain from any other source. But in the entirety of the game, how does Adept encounter equipment skew the power-level of characters in the duration of the Season, and how is it detrimental to the Season? It seems as though Adepts are as much player choice as picking where to gain experience and complete quests. Further, once Adepts are on-timer, if any given player choses to forego being on the leaderboard, they can chose to pause their exp gains to stay at that Adept, should they so wish. It would be the decision, as the player, to fall behind. With the content altogether disabled there is no choice whatsoever.

On point 2): Notably it's an alternative game mode. If having Adepts disabled is the game mode, then that's it and there is no dispute on this argument. Clearly the player can play Shards of Dalaya "Base Game" and have full reign on adepts should they want this.

*donfolstar3 specifically asked about this in the Season announcement thread and did not receive a response. Not publicly, at least, so I feel like this was possibly missed?

  • Ikisith content is not accessible.

I don't have a counter-argument to this because I just flat-out don't understand what restricting Ikkisith does to promote the health of the Season.

  • Requiem of Hate and Requiem of Fear are not accessible.

I similarly don't have a counter-argument for this. I don't understand how disabling it promotes a healthy Season.

OPINION

The Season announcement procured my interest. I've been away from the game for several years, if not longer. There have been significant changes and tireless hours that continuing and new developers have put into the betterment of this game. I'd like to see that content. At the time of this writing I'm only level 6 on my characters and am so far from much of what I'm advocating for - I might not even see it. But what I do see is the new letterbox popups that say, "Congratulations to Level X! Adepts available at this level: Adepts are disabled". I can't help but think, as a returning player, "Well, that's lame". I can't help but wonder what a new player, one whom has never seen any Shards of Dalaya content before in their life, thinks when they see this message. You can argue, "Lheo, a new player can play "Base Game" Shards of Dalaya and experience Adepts." Sure - certainly. But I'm not playing "Base Game" Shards of Dalaya. I think most people are playing "Seasonal" Shards of Dalaya right now. Anyone who is new probably will be, too, if they know they're more-likely to get a group playing a Seasonal character.

Removing choice makes a less interesting game. Having time-gated encounters create choice: "Do I forego progress for a chance at this piece of gear?" If you really abhor the thought of allowing players this choice, then perhaps revisit the Adept system altogether. It might be something to consider more deterministically, I.E.: Have a hail NPC that spawns the mob (if you haven't killed it and received a piece of loot from it), or a *Adept version that can be killed infinity times with no experience but it only ever rewards you an item, once. How the gear is rewarded - deterministically, on a die roll, whatever - doesn't matter to me. Just don't flat-out remove it.

*edit* I thought more about this above point. I think the more I think about it, Adepts are probably in dire need of revisiting. If this game mode, focused entirely on new play, can't support Adepts - why should the base game? I think a fair option would be the *Adept version that's a "one and done" sort-of thing. You get one piece of loot from a table that you want and move on - sort of like a quest. Players leveling get a quick little boon with an interesting piece of gear and then get to go back to leveling.

Adepts are a fun thing to look toward through the tedium of leveling. And I've done quite a few of the encounters up to level 30 or so. They're REALLY COOL! Why on earth would you potentially deprive a new player that fun? I was even considering working toward getting to 65 during this Season. For me it's actually a very difficult goal - one I'm not sure I can achieve. But one thing that would have motivated me was if Requiem of Hate/Fear were accessible. They look REALLY COOL! I really wanted to see them, but alas - I will not. "But Lheo, you can still see the zone outside of Seasonal play". Certainly, you can! Maybe I will, should the opportunity arise! But why would you currently deny that opportunity in arguably the biggest resurgence of low-level play, possibly ever, in Shards of Dalaya?

This Season conception, implementation and deployment is really just very good, and awesome, and I am so supportive of you guys for making it happen. Jumbers, Cole and anyone else who put in the hard work to make it happen - excellent job. Truly. I have such a different perspective, now, later in life with the appreciation of time. The time it takes to continue supporting this game; what a labor of love this has to be. You guys work so hard and I'm not trying to shit on that. But I just see SO MUCH POTENTIAL in this! It feels so close to a fresh start. Just... one that has imposed limitations that don't make sense to me.
 
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Otcho

Dalayan Pious Diety
The problem with plane of hate as far as I can comment is that once its available you have very little reason not to go there, its loot is just superior to most of the early raid tiers. You would just see it perpetually dead and by its existence warp any concept of "progression". I realize with 2.5 and numerous other changes that arguing for a truly classic experience might be difficult however hate would distort this far more than most other things(lol 2.5 hp). That is what I thought seasons was about and having hate accessible completely neuters the concept since you can magically just become tier 5+ without killing a single raid boss.
 
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bluetequila

Dalayan Adventurer
Yeah I think that's the same with Ikisith. Invalidates so many other zones when you get access to it.

I feel like it's supposed to be a "back to basics" sort of deal. No adepts to make you feel like "gee, maybe I'll stick at this level for a bit" because let's be real, Adept gear gets replaced. Sure it sucks when you have a quest item that upgrades, but imagine needing to wait half the season to get a kill on an Adept due to needing the level-restricted group AND the mob to be up.

However the current implementation feels like it's a way to draw back older players rather than attract/retain newer players. Early-on, I encountered a non-seasonal duo and I could do nothing to help them, group with them, etc.. it was a new player, and we just kinda shared the zone. So maybe making *S* a default for new characters you rather opt-out of (possibly at any time) in the future could be a solution? Basically what you're saying about the imposed limitations. It's like a challenge mode.

My issue, long-term, is that if Seasons continue, and I hope they do, I'm going to have my accounts full of high lvl chars I probably have to end up deleting.. I dunno if it would be possible to either: Transfer chars at the end of a season OR transfer currency across accounts. Probably pretty hard to implement that.
 

Deein

Dalayan Adventurer
The problem with plane of hate as far as I can comment is that once its available you have very little reason not to go there, its loot is just superior to most of the early raid tiers. You would just see it perpetually dead and by its existence warp any concept of "progression". I realize with 2.5 and numerous other changes that arguing for a truly classic experience might be difficult however hate would distort this far more than most other things(lol 2.5 hp). That is what I thought seasons was about and having hate accessible completely neuters the concept since you can magically just become tier 5+ without killing a single raid boss.


Yeah I think that's the same with Ikisith. Invalidates so many other zones when you get access to it.

I feel like it's supposed to be a "back to basics" sort of deal. No adepts to make you feel like "gee, maybe I'll stick at this level for a bit" because let's be real, Adept gear gets replaced. Sure it sucks when you have a quest item that upgrades, but imagine needing to wait half the season to get a kill on an Adept due to needing the level-restricted group AND the mob to be up.

Essentially these 2 dudes hit the nail

My issue, long-term, is that if Seasons continue, and I hope they do, I'm going to have my accounts full of high lvl chars I probably have to end up deleting.. I dunno if it would be possible to either: Transfer chars at the end of a season OR transfer currency across accounts. Probably pretty hard to implement that.
This will be an option offered once the season is over. ( as far as i remember. )
 

donfolstar3

Dalayan Master
No, I did not receive a response public or private to the adept question. It's worth noting two things: Dev-Cole did respond to other parts of my comment but avoided answering the Adept question and Salarus asked the question first. I wholeheartedly agree that the level up box that talked about Adepts when they are disabled was bad. A huge, huge turnoff for me actually.

but imagine needing to wait half the season to get a kill on an Adept due to needing the level-restricted group AND the mob to be up.

I tried and can't. There is no need, just choices. If you choose to play the game that way that is how you choose to play. That must be how you have fun! Bleeding edge and fun don't need to align. I used to run Tmaps a lot when I could have been boxing in [insert zone] grinding away at charm money. It was way less plat but it got newbs some gear and was social, which to me (not saying it is the immutable truth, but c'mon) is sort of the point of playing a MMO. Though, one that SoD seems to passively work against in a few ways.
 

null1fy

Dalayan Elder
Otcho said:
The problem with plane of hate as far as I can comment is that once its available you have very little reason not to go there, its loot is just superior to most of the early raid tiers. You would just see it perpetually dead and by its existence warp any concept of "progression". I realize with 2.5 and numerous other changes that arguing for a truly classic experience might be difficult however hate would distort this far more than most other things(lol 2.5 hp). That is what I thought seasons was about and having hate accessible completely neuters the concept since you can magically just become tier 5+ without killing a single raid boss.


bluetequila said:
Yeah I think that's the same with Ikisith. Invalidates so many other zones when you get access to it.

I feel like it's supposed to be a "back to basics" sort of deal. No adepts to make you feel like "gee, maybe I'll stick at this level for a bit" because let's be real, Adept gear gets replaced. Sure it sucks when you have a quest item that upgrades, but imagine needing to wait half the season to get a kill on an Adept due to needing the level-restricted group AND the mob to be up.
Essentially these 2 dudes hit the nail
On Hate: Isn't that a reason to shore up the rest of the game? Years ago, even before Hate or Fear existed, I remember when we restarted new characters, fresh 65's basically started on T4 content and went from there. T1-3 was so garbage (and possibly still is) that you only did it for Ancients/Relics. It just is so bizarre to me that there's this new game mode that incentivizes fresh 65's and content explicitly designed for fresh 65's is disabled. Am I wrong in my logic, here?

On Ikkisith: I suppose I can relate somewhat to restricting this, more, since it was an "expansion" of sorts. I still think it's worthwhile to include since there enables more player choice, but I don't think as much is lost in the 3 month span of a Season as to restrict, essentially, endgame content.

bluetequila said:
My issue, long-term, is that if Seasons continue, and I hope they do, I'm going to have my accounts full of high lvl chars I probably have to end up deleting.. I dunno if it would be possible to either: Transfer chars at the end of a season OR transfer currency across accounts. Probably pretty hard to implement that.
This will be an option offered once the season is over. ( as far as i remember. )

Shooting for the moon, here: It would be really nice if we could "eat" our Seasonal character and contribute their gained experience to another character of our choice. That would be pretty awesome and I'd FOR SURE be sold on Seasonal play at that point.
 

Thade

DINOSAUR THADE
On Hate: Isn't that a reason to shore up the rest of the game? Years ago, even before Hate or Fear existed, I remember when we restarted new characters, fresh 65's basically started on T4 content and went from there. T1-3 was so garbage (and possibly still is) that you only did it for Ancients/Relics. It just is so bizarre to me that there's this new game mode that incentivizes fresh 65's and content explicitly designed for fresh 65's is disabled. Am I wrong in my logic, here?
All tier 1-3 loot just had a balance pass in the last patch.
 

Wit

Dalayan Adventurer
Make adepts have a 5min respawn and let people farm them like crazy, they are fun and have awesome gear for leveling. They are also a chunk of exp. Drifting around the world with a group hitting dungeons and adepts sounds like a fun way to level. I never understood their respawn timer, was the intent of adepts to just casually kill them here and there as you level or is adept progression "raiding" the intent? Most adepts in the 30+ range start to get harder and need 2 groups so that will never just casually happen but if you have an adept hunting raid you have to pause at each adept level for days or weeks to get everyone the items they need/want, an issue mostly because you don't have access to AA and exp lock is a waste for anything aside from item exp. Farming adepts from 1-60 probably takes about 3 months, which is probably why they are disabled for *S* toons. Lower respawn or unlock AA exp for characters at level 1 so when they want to level lock they can stay productive.

Make Plane of Hate bosses harder, a war+clr in PoHate gear can 2box at least 2 of the bosses in there, otherwise it should be a ~t2-3 6man and drop t2-3ish loot and fit in well with seasonal play kind of like cmal, but maybe the loot is too good?

Plane of Fear is awesome and its a shame it isn't allowed, seems like a great place for seasonal toons to progress in.

Who cares about ikkisith, it takes forever to get too without ports and there is very little low tier content anyway.
 

Deein

Dalayan Adventurer
Shooting for the moon, here: It would be really nice if we could "eat" our Seasonal character and contribute their gained experience to another character of our choice. That would be pretty awesome and I'd FOR SURE be sold on Seasonal play at that point.

You shoot at The Moon and MISS.
 

bluetequila

Dalayan Adventurer
I tried and can't. There is no need, just choices. If you choose to play the game that way that is how you choose to play. That must be how you have fun! Bleeding edge and fun don't need to align. I used to run Tmaps a lot when I could have been boxing in [insert zone] grinding away at charm money. It was way less plat but it got newbs some gear and was social, which to me (not saying it is the immutable truth, but c'mon) is sort of the point of playing a MMO. Though, one that SoD seems to passively work against in a few ways.
I did not mean "need" as in, it is a necessity that must be done - rather, I used it in the sense that if you *want* to upgrade the piece of gear you *need* to kill the Adept. The previous statement was that the Adept gear eventually all gets replaced, anyway, so clearly it is not integral. Having adepts available would cause a lot(well, more than necessary) of players to stall progress out for various reasons, which I think would negatively impact the season.

Though for Bard, there's a distinct lack of decent instrument mods without Adepts..

Re; char transfers. I just read a copy/paste of the early season announcement, which prompted me to come back to this thread. It did say chars could be transferred to a different account at the end of the season, by request, but that isn't included in the current version of the announcement. Transferring XP seems kind of abusable in some way. You can already give your other char(s) a little fame, which you could use for a few AAs if that floats your boat. IMO one reason for the season is to generate some fresh/low-tier 65s so people who may be stuck can get in on some raiding after the season's over. Deleting them, then, seems kind of counter-productive. I for one kind of want to bring my old chars out of retirement afterwards TBH.
 

muzakragex

Dalayan Beginner
I did not mean "need" as in, it is a necessity that must be done - rather, I used it in the sense that if you *want* to upgrade the piece of gear you *need* to kill the Adept.

This kind of logic. I feel like there are more barriers than ever in how you choose to play the game.
Maybe you don't need the stats. Maybe that focus is barely noticeable, but I always felt like when I had a specific goal in mind, even the smallest quest/drop felt very rewarding and motivating.

Maybe I just feel like this is one giant test server on PCP now. Maybe there are just too many extra time sinks that just did not exist before, but that's just me. I don't blame the staff for outsourcing play-testing. I just don't agree with it when it effects the natural course of a long standing server that many people have devoted countless hours into already and are obviously still bleeding from the swap into an Alice in Wonderland horror show type transformation.

Adepts are not the focus, so even if everyone really just wants to do adepts, this is irrelevant. Thought process of an overseer.
 

null1fy

Dalayan Elder
I did not mean "need" as in, it is a necessity that must be done - rather, I used it in the sense that if you *want* to upgrade the piece of gear you *need* to kill the Adept. The previous statement was that the Adept gear eventually all gets replaced, anyway, so clearly it is not integral. Having adepts available would cause a lot(well, more than necessary) of players to stall progress out for various reasons, which I think would negatively impact the season.

All we can do is assume at this point - since they weren't enabled we don't really know how players would have responded if they were enabled.

Though for Bard, there's a distinct lack of decent instrument mods without Adepts..

I was told that Adept loot is phasing out from "it's clearly better than normally acquired gear" to "unique and distinct gear that is less impactful".

Re; char transfers. I just read a copy/paste of the early season announcement, which prompted me to come back to this thread. It did say chars could be transferred to a different account at the end of the season, by request, but that isn't included in the current version of the announcement. Transferring XP seems kind of abusable in some way. You can already give your other char(s) a little fame, which you could use for a few AAs if that floats your boat. IMO one reason for the season is to generate some fresh/low-tier 65s so people who may be stuck can get in on some raiding after the season's over. Deleting them, then, seems kind of counter-productive. I for one kind of want to bring my old chars out of retirement afterwards TBH.

If this is the case, my protest in favor of having more things available is that much more codified. It truly would be a handicap for new players to be limited in what they had available to them.

You shoot at The Moon and MISS.

Can't blame a bro for trying.
 

bluetequila

Dalayan Adventurer
Yeah I think removing content is generally a bad idea. Especially new players will be tempted by Adepts, if they see the amazing gear on the wiki. "I have this amulet, this is my last level to upgrade it.. ?" but, at the same time, it could very well be A TRAP!

It'd probably be too easy if they made it possible otherwise to get that gear, say if a seasonal character could just turn it in somewhere for the upgrade. But it's a shame that there's stuff not available to seasonal characters, especially when there are people who PREFER to sort of "max out" their char, at whatever level they can. I'm among them, but I don't really miss adepts, since they're generally such a hassle to actually do anyway.
 

null1fy

Dalayan Elder
QUEST PACING

I've been working on a few series of Beastlord questlines:

Wildkin Training, Tamer Kabil's Quests, Atavism

Each quest-line, individually, isn't so bad. They're pretty nice in what they reward and I like the updated gear. There's some redundancy in the quest rewards (duplicate pieces) across the quest lines, but there's also a lot of unique pieces awarded as well. It makes all of them alluring to do. All three still reward neat items, and I think they all deserve to be sought out in their current form. But as they stand, they all take a lot of time on-level; running to each place takes time, acquiring the necessary pieces in the distinct regions take time and ultimately, the pacing doesn't feel natural.

I'm evil-aligned so I haven't even gotten to turn-in a lot of the quest pieces I've collected for Atavism at the time of this writing.
Suggestion: Either make Atavism not require Vah faction, or make this fresh fish bounty quest provide you with a fishing pole and ample bait. Like a NO RENT pole and enough NO RENT bait in a NO RENT backpack, maybe?, for you to easily get enough faction to be able to do Vah quests in the zone without having to leave. It was pretty frustrating to run all of the way there, get some quest pieces and then not be able to turn the quest in. I had to go to my starting city and buy fishing equipment.

You could argue each questline is designed for those specific alignments. You're not intended to do all three. Sure, that's fair - except Tamer Kabil's questline ends at the 5th quest that results in Claws of the High Tamer, Atavism ends at the 7th quest that results in Ancient Spear, and Wildkin Training ends after a whopping THIRTEEN quests resulting in Wildkin Hammer OR Wildkin Maul. Pretty safe to say, evil-aligned Beastlords get the shaft, right?

I don't know where to put my finger on it but quest pacing just seems ... sluggish. I'm not sure if they're intended to be a tour of early zones that wade you into progressively deeper content, or the full-blown authentic EverQuest experience where you're camping that Paw of Opolla for 3 days. They sort-of feel like the latter when lumped together. My point is - through the course of regular gameplay, I quickly began to out-level the quests in their intended levels. Granted, I'm only 17 (and War experience greatly boosted me out of some quests' experience range), but even before the War even out-leveled me, they all, cumulatively, took a lot of time.

I wanted to go through and point out some atrociously difficult-to-acquire item to point out the inconvenience, I really couldn't find one*. There have been a few rarer ones like: Kish-Ka Claw, Froglok Neophyte Robe, and Froglok Sentry Belt, to name a few. But those weren't even really all that bad. The summary point is time. All of these things have taken up time. I really paid attention to the leaderboard the first few days of play in the Season. Few to none on the level-specific leaderboard did any of these quests.

I haven't even gotten to the fact that I'm boxing a Wizard, as well, and haven't put any time into acquiring newbie gear for him. I'm going to have to back-track, and not get very good experience in the process, to do the Wizard Newport Cup series for him.

Suggestion: I'd prefer the early level newbie quests to be this sort-of natural flow where you can get like-power gear comparative to other places you can start out. And everyone just gets the same vanilla stuff, with maybe some pieces having a different resist here (thematically to the region), and maybe a different proc there. But everyone should get the same suite of gear, and it should all cover most of the same item slots. Currently, that doesn't exist. Beastlords I've inspected who are 50+ in the season, whom did Atavism and Wildkin Training, still wear a lot of these quest pieces from the questlines. I haven't seen any higher level Beastlords use Tamer Kabil's stuff - I think it's the redheaded step-child in the three choices.

*edit. Found one: Arcane Dust. Eff that stuff, man. I had to kill so many grey-con skeletons on my Wizard to get 6. I think it took over an hour to get 6 dust.
 
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muzakragex

Dalayan Beginner
Not to take away thunder, I'm glad someone cared enough to share all this...but I felt this way about basically every quest I've ever done in the game...
It might be a little worse for seeker and refuge stuff(??) but IF the beginner quests are all a cakewalk, they would probably be in for a rude awakening come main-quest time...

but yeah, help out the little guys. all for it.

oh and Ihave two evil iksars.. I feel your pain
 

Grinkles

Developer
Staff member
I'm evil-aligned so I haven't even gotten to turn-in a lot of the quest pieces I've collected for Atavism at the time of this writing.
Suggestion: Either make Atavism not require Vah faction, or make this fresh fish bounty quest provide you with a fishing pole and ample bait. Like a NO RENT pole and enough NO RENT bait in a NO RENT backpack, maybe?, for you to easily get enough faction to be able to do Vah quests in the zone without having to leave. It was pretty frustrating to run all of the way there, get some quest pieces and then not be able to turn the quest in. I had to go to my starting city and buy fishing equipment.
Can you shed some light on this? The Fresh Fish quest doesn't involve the fishing skill, nor any fishable items, nor any reason to leave the zone. As I recall, all you need to do is spend maybe 20 minutes gathering meat from level <5 fish enemies in the same zone and you should be able to turn them in for sufficient faction to do the Vah guild quests.

Am I misremembering?
 

null1fy

Dalayan Elder
Can you shed some light on this? The Fresh Fish quest doesn't involve the fishing skill, nor any fishable items, nor any reason to leave the zone. As I recall, all you need to do is spend maybe 20 minutes gathering meat from level <5 fish enemies in the same zone and you should be able to turn them in for sufficient faction to do the Vah guild quests.

Am I misremembering?

Oh boy - I sure feel like a dummy. I just read "fishing" and assumed you had to use the fishing skill. I had no idea you run around and kill fish.
 

Rarok

Dalayan Elder
I think Adepts could only be a negative thing in the first few days of the season. Potentially one group can nab them all, gain a lot of power, and have an advantage the whole season. Maybe if they were disabled for a short time, it would have the desired effect for keeping the race fair. BTW, some of those items are really OP. Some shoulders in the 40-50 range are better than hate options for tanks.

Though, I really do not suggest Season 2 being the same format. A three month race is fun for a season, but I guessing a few people will drop out for Season 2 and even more for Season 3 if it is the same. I think Season 1 is set in stone, but we can see how fast people progress... Tier out content similar to live progression servers. You need 'catch up' points where guilds will dominate content for a few weeks before the next chunk is opened. It can unlock on kills or unlock via time- or a mixture. I just foresee when all these characters are merged into the main server you will have a general feeling of... Wow, that was a waste of time... we don't enjoy the ringer system.
 

null1fy

Dalayan Elder
Tamer Kabil's Quest IV

It requires 2 Giant Leech Hides. Per the wiki, Giant Leeches only come out at night in Stinger's Bog; why? In the area near Grobb, a swamp leech spawns with no time variance. On top of that, it's a rarer drop (or my RNG has been terrible) and they're difficult to spawn, as well. I've completed Quest V just from running around and killing trash trying to spawn them. Seems backwards you can complete the subsequent quest more easily than the current objective at hand.
Suggestion: Make giant swamp leeches spawn regardless of day/night cycle. Give them a fixed area where at least one or two always spawn.
 
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