It’s Patch Day for Elder Scrolls online! The new DLC, Dark Brotherhood, will be available… well, it will be available when it’s available. You know how Patch Day goes. There was a patch, then an emergency patch to patch the patch and…
Suffice to say, I’m writing this article instead of playing in the new Dark Brotherhood content. (Which will feature, among other things: Assassination bounties, poison-making, and CRAFTING BAGS!)
Crafting Bags… mmmm….
Where was I? Oh yes. This article, while not necessarily thoroughly planned out as such, is going to be chock-full of interesting and fun tidbits, as well as a bit of fan-girling.
One of the things I love about this game is, you can take or steal just about anything. (SO MUCH LOOT!) Of course, there are consequences to stealing. If someone sees you, you get a bounty put on your head. Too high of a bounty, and the guards will kill you on sight and take your ill-gotten gains.
It is with this in mind that I remind you all: Pillage and plunder first, THEN burn.
And unlike “other games,” the destruction you wrought doesn’t simply fade away, leaving you wondering just wtf was the point. This is another stable I returned to about 10 minutes later. The fire has caught nicely.
Barrels, sacks, and crates aren’t the only things you can loot. We’ve also got little troves of treasure, just waiting to be plundered. This is what a “Thieves Trove” looks like in the world.
You are warned that it is theft, with red lettering instead of white.
Of course we stole it! The booty:
When harvesting nodes in the wild, you can leave the “Role Play” aspect in tact, and just hunt for things to harvest. Here is a shot of what some of the harvestables look like if you stumble across them:
They’re quite easy to miss (except the blue ones), so if you have no patience for the hunting-gathering and just want your shiny lights to show you where in Sam-Hill your gatherables are, fear not! There’s a skill point for that.
Ahh, that’s better. It also makes night-gathering a breeze.
If you’re REALLY lazy, there are in-game NPCs to gather for you, once or twice a day. They don’t bring in much, but sometimes they send the rare items. You don’t actually see them in game, but their presence is made known through their letters, which are often tiny little story-arcs all on their own. My enchanter employee has had a bit of a rough time of it at the local tavern, as you can see:
There are all kinds of things in the world of Tamriel to discover and explore.
Elder Scrolls Online: From the Wikipedia: “The Elder Scrolls Online is a massively multiplayer online role-playing video game developed by ZeniMax Online Studios. It was originally released on April 4, 2014 for Microsoft Windows and OS X. It is a part of The Elder Scrolls action fantasy video game franchise, of which it is the first open-ended multiplayer installment.”
Elder Scrolls Online is an online, multiplayer version of the Tamriel world, the same world found in the beloved games Morrowind, Oblivion, and Skyrim. I’m delighted to say the current version of the game has captured much of what made Skyrim so playable.
Gold: the standard, in-game monetary unit. Crowns: Purchase with Real Money at the marketplace. Can be used to purchase vanity items, Downloadable content expansions, and trifles. Alliance Points: Currently gained from PVP experience, used to purchase PVP potions, PVP things, siege items, and more. Tel Var Stones: Honestly, I have no idea. I must not have gotten that far yet.
Elder Scrolls Online (Hereinafter referred to as “ESO”), is a “Buy to play” game, with optional subscription and expansion choices. You must purchase the game, either online through the website or through associates such as STEAM, or a hard copy version from your favorite gaming retailer. It runs about 60 US dollars for the basic game. After that, your online experience can be completely free: no monthly subscription needed, and many players choose this. There is PLENTY of content without the additional expansions, especially in the first few months of playing. There are, however, additional purchasing options. You may purchase Crowns with real money, allowing you to purchase downloadable content (“DLC”), otherwise known to most gamers as expansions. These expansions —err, DLC— are forever accessible if purchased via Crowns. The other way you can go is to purchase a monthly subscription – which I have – which grants access to every DLC, for as long as I have my “ESO Plus Membership” subscription. When the subscription ends, so does the access to the DLC. The neat part of this is, your monthly subscription gives you 1500 Crowns! You can save up your crowns and purchase the content if you want to end your sub, but keep the expansion content. There are currently three expansion/DLCs available: The Imperial City, Orsinium, and Thieves Guilds, with a fourth, The Dark Brotherhood, planned for late May.
Elder Scroll Online’s graphics are breathtaking. I expected a shoddier, rougher look than Skyrim, and was pleasantly surprised with the feel and detail of Tamriel. I don’t have a high-end computer, but I can run high graphics without Lag, which impressed me even more. No sacrificing graphic quality for performance! The movement impressed me, as well. The grass moves like grass. NPCs move around like people and have conversations with each other that don’t inlcude you. Butterflies and frogs and fireflies zip around (which you can catch!) adding to sense of a living, breathing world. The zones are intelligent, so you aren’t stepping from desert to arctic wasteland to jungle inside 5 feet. It’s probably the most beautiful game I’ve played.
Sounds and music are above average, with a minimum amount of sound options available. The music background music is neither irritating nor exactly inspiring, but the changes do let you know whether you’re in combat or out, in a town area, or near goodies like thieves troves, so the musical cues do their job well. As near as I can tell, the bards only know two songs, which I call “Red Diamonds” and “Sway as We Kiss.” The game tries to fool you by sometimes playing the songs without lyrics, but those minstrels don’t fool me one bit. I’ve spent enough time in the taverns to know “Red Diamonds” when I hear it! If I had one complaint about the game, the bards’ limited repertoire would be it.
Cons: Red Diamonds!
Currently, the leveling system is: 1-50 regular levels, then 1-16 “veteran” levels, with a “Champion” point system at the vet level. However, vet levels will soon be going the way of the dodo, leaving us with levels 1-50 plus champion points.
During your leveling from 1-50, you earn two sets of points: attributes and skills.
Attributes are health, magicka, and stamina. Like every MMO ever, your health affects how much damage you take before you die. Magicka is both how many spells you can cast, and how effective they are. Stamina is the non-caster version of stamina, for the sword and bow types. You can pick where to put your attributes, which makes for some interesting build choices. Want a stamina sorcerer? Sure, why not. A magicka tank? Anything you want, buddy. You aren’t even limited to what kind of armor you can wear. Put that healer in heavy armor, if you feel like it!
Skill points are something else entirely, and you put them where ever you want to. You can put them into spells, crafts, armor, passive skills, whatever the blast you feel like putting them into. (Pro-tip though, you’re going to want a bunch in your class abilities. You could probably get away with your basic attack, but I don’t recommend it.) While you only get 1 skill per level, you also get skill points for completing certain quests, killing some boss mobs, or you get 1 skill point for every 3 “Skyshards” you find in the world… and there are a LOT of them out there.
Champion points, which you start earning at 50, are extra little perks such as extra resists, faster regeneration of magicka, health or stamina, extra critical power, and the like.
Questing: Yes, please! None of that annoying “Go here, kill X mobs, rinse repeat” from ESO! Like Skyrim, you have objectives, yes, but the mobs you kill are incidental to the objective, and are usually only because they’re in the way. There is lots of talking, and clicking on things to make them go, puzzles to solve, helpless men to rescue… The main story runs throughout, with side quests in addition to alliance quests that run tandem with the overall story arc. I even completed some of the out of order, which gave entirely new spins on what I thought was going on! In one, after doing the level 40 quest line, I tried to kill off a character in an early 20’s level quest, because I didn’t like what the character did later on… only to find out what my choosing that action was what make the …being… so unlikable. I guess even ESO hates a paradox! Well done, writers.
If you hate quests, you may not care for this aspect of the game much. There are map icons which indicate where you should go, but there is no golden path as there was in Skyrim. You’re just going to have to run around and find it yourself. (Hint to non-American players: “Throwing” a lever means you find a switch and push it. You don’t actually throw anything.)
None, but rumors are that player housing is panned for some point in the future.
The dye customization is interesting. You can dye any piece of armor that you like, for free, as many times as you like, but the trick is, you have to unlock the dyes first. You can unlock dyes through quests and achievements.
Trade: In what has to be an MMO first, there is no global auction house, which takes some getting used to. The theory is, when you have a global auction house, said auction houses’ prices and availability of items can be monopolized by one guild or even one person. Instead, ESO uses a system in which you can join up to five player-created guilds at once. Each guild, if it has over 50 members, can have a store. You can purchase from any guild store that you find in the world, but you can only put items up for sale in your own guilds. This has kind of an interesting effect, where you can join a guild or two for social reasons, grouping reasons, or trading reasons, or any combination thereof. I have three guilds I do extensive selling with, for example, with two social guilds, one a rather nicely hardcore group that executes dungeons with precision, and another social guild with lots of chatting and new people (like me) trying to figure out how to just play the game. The guild system fosters a very comfortable gaming community, where everyone tends to get along because there isn’t a whole lot of cut-throat competition for resources or customers. Everyone can be a master craftsman. Just because your guild has one, doesn’t mean you can’t be one, too!
Happy to report that unlike some games, you don’t have to limit yourself to only picking one or two or three things you want to do with crafting, and being forced to level alt after alt in order to pick up the others. The skill points system means you can put points wherever the hell you want to. I was initially advised to only pick two crafts. I blew that advice off, and am now happily crafting clothing, weapons, staves, and enchantments. There is a 1-50 progression for crafting, with one skill point needed every 10 or so levels. Within that progression, there are other skills you can choose to pick up, using your skill points, such as free daily materials, glowy materials in the wild, extra research slots, and more. (Did I mention that gathering is NOT a skill? Gather whatever you want, whevener you want.)
Like most MMOs, your crafting will take increasingly better materials to make increasingly better items. Where it gets better than other MMOs is in the research! There are a number of “sets” available to craft found around Tamriel, but each set requires a number of known “traits” in order to craft. For example, let’s say you want the “Seducer” set to increase your Magicka recovery and max amount of Magicka. You’ll need to have researched at least 3 “traits” from other armor, for each piece you want to make. That’s three for the light helmet, three for the chest, three for the boots, etc. You can learn up to 9 traits, with increased research time per trait. The first is 5 hours. The fifth is five days. (I haven’t gotten beyond five yet.) This is where the community comes in handy! You’re quite likely to run into a crafter who is happy to make whatever you want, for the materials and tip. Your guilds wants you in good armor, and the armor materials themselves are relatively inexpensive. It’s the research time that’s the killer!
You’ll also have fun trying to gather all the different “styles” of armor (because who wants to run around in a robe that looks exactly like everyone elses’?) All in all, its a complex but fascinating system. I’m working on a spreadsheet.
Pros: CRAFT ALL THE THINGS!
Cons: Improving your items can be pricey.
No global PVP. However, there is an entire huge zone of PVP content, in which you fight for strategic points such as lumbermills, and the on to siege the castles and keeps. Bring your healers, your trebuchets and your catapults!
Pros: Balance! I know, I know, I was stunned, too. I woudln’t have believed it myself if I hadn’t (stealthed) watched two max-level dudes try to duke it out for over six minutes without either one of them making any headway. After a while they stopped fighting and sort of walked away together. I like to think they were going for a beer.
Cons: You can ONLY fight alongside your NPC-guild alliance members, so if you’re with the NPC alliance, Daggerfall Covenant, while your PC guildmates are Aldmeri Dominion, forget it. Unless you want to see who can wipe the floor with the other, of course.
I haven’t gotten to the end game yet. I imagine it’s more dungeons and better gear. ESO dungeons so far have been fun , and don’t feel very grindy and boring. The bosses have unique challenges to overcome (you ever tried lockpicking yourself out of a cell while your party mates scream at you to hurry up so you can heal them? Ya. Unique.) They’re also not all the SAME dungeons, with different mobs scattered around. Each feels very different from the others, with different layouts, design, and length.
Community: The community is amazing. My personal hypothesis is, this is not a game where the objective is to screw someone else over, so it isn’t attracting the kinds of players who only play a game to screw someone. *cough*ArcheageEve*Cough* You’re not smashing someone else’s ships, fortresses, castles, or trade supplies. It’s more of a multiplayer get-along-gang game, where cooperative play is actually encouraged. Very refreshing.
As games go, I highly recommend this one. You should try it.
Due to a potential issue that could cause characters to become stuck after ship destruction or being podkilled, we feel that it is necessary to postpone the deployment of the March release, which was scheduled to go live on Tranquility tomorrow, March 8th 2016.
The EVE Development team here at CCP are constantly working to ensure that each release is deployed with the best game performance and player experience at the forefront of our goals. Right now, we feel that due to this issue, the March release isn’t quite there yet, and as such we will push back the release by a few days in order to iron out this issue.
This shouldn’t take too long, and hopefully in the coming days we’ll be able to give you an update, and announce a new deployment date for the March release.
With this in mind, the extended daily downtime that was required for tomorrow will not be needed, and downtime will occur in the regularly scheduled 30 minute window, beginning at 11:00 UTC.
Source: EVE ONLINE NEWS
Due to a significant database upgrade in preparation for the transition to Tranquility Tech III, downtime will be occurring early and will be extended on Wednesday, February 24th 2016.
Daily downtime will be moved forward by two hours on the 24th, and will start at 09:00 UTC, lasting one hour. We anticipate that Tranquility will be back online and accepting connections 60 minutes later at 10:00 UTC.
Apologies for any inconvenience the change to daily downtime may cause!
You can read more about the Tranquility Tech III project in these two Dev Blogs:
We have been developing a new and improved log viewing application known as ‘LogLite’; this replaces the decade old ‘LogServer’ application. We also wanted to improve accessibility of our log viewer, so in the new launcher you can access LogLite from the settings menu.
One of the motivating factors for developing LogLite was to provide a cross platform log viewer to improve the reports we get from our Mac community. LogLite has support for both Cider and Wine logging. Additionally, we have open-sourced the EVE LogLite project. If you’re interested in the project, can go to GitHub: EVE LogLite and take a look.
With the upcoming February release launching the Skill Trading system, Skill Extractors are going to be available for purchase starting tomorrow. There are several different ways to acquire Skill Extractors, either from CCP or eventually from the in-game markets for ISK. Additionally, to celebrate the release of Skill Trading we are providing a range of offers on AUR, PLEX and subscription. Here’s how you can get your hands on the latest in New Eden’s Transneural technology:
Skill Extactors for Aurum
You can acquire Skill Extractors from the New Eden Store using Aurum. Skill Extractors can be purchased in quantities of 1, 5, or 10 for 1000AUR, 4500AUR, and 8000AUR respectively.
Extractor prices have been adjusted to make assessing prices easier.
Special Launch Deals: Aurum Packages With More Bonus Aurum
For the rest of February, all Aurum packages offer extra bonus Aurum amounts. If you’ve been eyeing some new SKINs for your ships, or just want to stock up on the brand new Skill Extractors, this is the perfect time to grab some Aurum.
With these bonus packages, you can get the following quantities of Skill Extractors:
Direct Purchase from Account Management
You can alternatively purchase Skill Extractors directly from Account Management. Skill Extractors can be purchased in packs of 1, 5, or 10 for 5.49USD, 24.99USD, and 44.99USD respectively. All of our existing payment methods are supported and is available in all of our supported currencies.
Free Skill Extractors with Subscription Offers
If you are looking at renewing your subscription, our offers on 3, 6 and 12 month subscriptions now include free Skill Extractors for a limited time.
PLEX Bundle Sale
Our PLEX bundles are on sale starting tomorrow. This offer is only available until February 16, 2016 so if you need to stock up, make sure you get in quick!
If you wish to learn more about Skill Trading, you can find more information in these articles:
Today (8 February) we applied an update to Tranquility’s login server (also known as Single Sign-On or SSO). We had previously deployed this update to Singularity and discovered an issue whereby two database tables were conflated by the SSO and therefore users were given valid authentication tokens for accounts that were not their own. At the time, Singularity was down and so no other data was compromised. We fixed the issue, cleaned up the mess, tested the fix thoroughly, and deployed the fixed version to Tranquility today.
Unfortunately, it seems that the issue reoccurred when the update was deployed to Tranquility, and some users once again were given valid authentication tokens for accounts that were not their own. This gave them the ability to log into the accounts in question and perform any action the owner of the account would have been able to in-game. We haven’t found any evidence that unauthorized access to other services was possible or has taken place, but we are continuing to investigate to confirm that this is the case.
As soon as the issue was identified to be occurring on Tranquility we shut down the login server, preventing any further errant authentication tokens from being given out. Since that meant that players couldn’t log into the game, and that those with existing errant authentication tokens would still be able to access other accounts, we also decided to instigate emergency downtime on Tranquility while we resolved the issue. Our next steps were to purge all authentication tokens, making the errant authentication tokens useless, and rollback the login server update so that the issue did not reoccur.
As such, all players will need to login again when using any our services that utilize SSO, including third-party services and the game launcher. We are compiling a list of affected accounts, and our customer service and security teams are working on verifying the integrity of the accounts and assets contained therein. We will be in touch with those affected in due course, so you are not required to file a support ticket. However, if you feel that you have been adversely affected by the issue, you are still welcome to submit a ticket.
We apologize for any inconvenience caused due to this issue.
Source: EVE ONLINE NEWS
Like most countries in the world Australia has a military and people are often asked to go and do things that the ordinary person would not even be able to comprehend. These people form the armed services who fight and are willing to pay the ultimate sacrifice it does not matter what country they belong to they all share that bond of brotherhood that can only be explained to someone who has stood in exactly the same shoes you have.
As a member of the Australian Military i have been on multiple active deployments that have taken me away from my family and friends on multiple occasions (both eve and RL) and i have done it for 12 years. Its funny i only signed on the dotted line for four years and 12 years later is still find myself getting dressed in a military uniform.
Unfortunately some of this service has taken a toll on me personally. I was recently diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and Major Depression coupled with anxiety attacks that can be brought on by simply crossing the road. The stigma of mental illness in Australia still exists that i suspect it does in many other countries, in particular with veterans. You see we are taught to turn on the kill switch but very few people are taught to turn it off. So when we come home we feel isolated distant or sometimes a different person. The world has moved on without us and we struggle to relate to our own families and friends. The expectations are the same, howerver some people just cant switch the brain off.
I got lucky after two failed suicide attempts and an intervention from my friends i voluntarily checked myself into a PTSD Mental Health facility that caters to serving and ex serving members of the military. Here i learned quite a lot about myself and about what it means to constantly have to battle my mind everyday. I also discovered a wonderful non profit charity group called Young Diggers.
Young diggers offer support and guidance to serving and ex-serving members as well as their family’s as you can see below their mission statement.
Support and programs for serving and ex-serving military personnel and their families It’s about YOU!
Young Diggers provides a variety of support services and programs to help serving and ex-serving personnel of the Australian Defence Force, their dependents and direct family members.
Whether you, or a family member, has served in the Army, Navy or Air Force on operational deployment or during peace time, or you a member of the Australian Federal Police who has served on peacekeeping missions, we are here for you. Our main objective is to enhance and maintain your quality of life during your transition from military to civilian life and help you overcome the difficulties you are facing.
On top of this they have what is known as a dog squad and this is where Ari my 2.5 year old German Shepherd comes into play
The Dog Squad
Assistance Dogs for Combat Stress and Physical/Mental Illness
The Young Diggers Dog Squad trains dogs to become Assistance Dogs to support our serving and ex-serving Australian Defence Force members who are dealing with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorders (PTSD). This program helps more than just the individuals.
The Dog Squad helps Defence families to better cope with the effects of PTSD and saves the lives of many rescued dogs.
Throughout this program, Young Diggers provides members with help and practical support to enhance the quality of life for both the dog and the individual.
We are an organisation that does not stigmatize, pass judgement or devalue those living with and suffering from combat stress and mental illness. We provide a safe environment for our members to network with one another, exchange training tips and support one another through tough times. Family members are welcome and encouraged to get involved with the Dog Squad training.
Each dog that they rescue and train is provided to a veteran in need. These dogs offer more than just companionship they have the ability to wake you from night terrors, sense when you’re about to have an anxiety attack and pull you out of flashbacks/day terrors. They also force you to interact in normal life again rather than shutting yourself away from people. Having to take the dog for a walk or go get dog food while it might seem like an easy ordinary task for some people can be a reach challenge
These dogs are vital to the rehabilitation and recovery for people suffering from Mental Illness brought on by their service to their country. I know this is an Australian program but it is one i hold very dear to my heart, because they saved my life.
So we as a directorship for DMG have decided that this is a worthwhile cause to get behind and support and we hope you do as well.
It takes $2500AU per dog to rescue, train and rehome with a needing veteran and like DMG leadership we are hoping that the DMG and SMA community can rally behind this great cause and help veterans in need no matter what country you are from.
If everyone in SMA donated $1 for each of their characters in SMA we would raise about $5000 which is enough to get two dogs fully trained, and provided to a needing Veteran
So regardless of your country of origin check out the site and make up your own mind and if you can please donate to the DMG Charity Paypal by clicking on the little link below and let’s see how far we can get as a group and community. Donations will close at the end of February and whatever we make will be given to Young Diggers.
A first mass test for the new Citadel code branch will take place on January 26th at 17:00 UTC (EVE time) on our test server Duality.
We will test core functionality of the Citadel code branch that involves a fleet fight and potentially a trip to a partially functional Citadel. This is early development: this mass test offers you a glimpse at development in progress on Tuesday, January 26th, at 17:00 UTC (EVE time). More information about this mass test can be found in this forum thread.
With Fanfest 2016 drawing ever closer, we thought it would be a good idea to take a look back over past events to find some of the most enjoyable and fun moments from the last 11 Fanfests.
While we have countness photos from fanfests of old stored safely here at CCP, as we started to look at parties and celebrations from previous events it brought back a strong reminder of how amazing and creative our community is.
With that in mind, and after a few great reminders of some of the awesome shenanigans of past Fanfests, the Community Team here at CCP have organized a little bit of a contest…
Entry is super simple, and there’s a few fun prizes to be won over the course of the next couple of weeks. Here’s how you can get involved!
The competition starts right now as of this news item, and runs through until downtime on Friday, January 29th.
We’re looking for members of the community to tweet their favorite picture from previous Fanfests using the #evefanfest hashtag, along with a a short description of what makes the image so entertaining or special for them.
We’ll be monitoring this hashtag, and will be looking for the funniest and most creative Fanfest pictures!
Each day we’ll pick two winners who will be contacted by @CCP_Falcon by direct message on twitter to confirm their character name so that a prize can be awarded to them or we can arrange shipping.
Prizes will be selected randomly from the following pool for each winner:
60 days of game time
1x Pirate rookie frigate of choice
1x Signed EVE: Source Limited Edition
1x Signed EVE Universe: The Art Of New Eden
1x Signed EVE: Into The Second Decade Book
On the final day, January 29th, we’ll select the two usual prizes as per every other day, but will also include a third prizewinner which we’ll draw after the contest ends. This winner will receive a grand prize consisting of the following:
120 days of game time
Pair of EVE Online Shot Glasses
Signed copy of each of the EVE Novels
Signed Commissioned Officer Edition of EVE
Signed EVE: Source Limited Edition
Signed EVE Universe: The Art Of New Eden
Signed copy of the original “Art Of EVE”
Randomly selected faction beer glass
Assorted packs from EVE: The Collectible Card Game
In addition to this, if the grand prize winner is attending Fanfest 2016, on Wednesday April 20th they will be invited to CCP Headquarters, along with a friend of their choice, for a guided tour hosted by CCP Guard and CCP Falcon, lunch at CCP, a signed set of concept art prints and photographs on the set of the o7 Show.
We’re looking forward to seeing your best memories from Fanfests gone bye!
Start tweeting using the #evefanfest hashtag and remember, tickets for Fanfest 2016 are still available!