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All posts created by Bob

Bob
Azure_Zero
This new building is an outsider of the rules with the other buildings in crafting requirements (granted in that it is made differently).
If you want to do that, then make it Low T3(14-17), not High T3(17+), as a requirement.
Then at least those settlements just entering T3 have a project they could start working on for the end-game, or at least contribute in the work with another group.

The Statue of Pharasma is meant to be an end-game project for those settlements who've already worked their way through all the content we've provided, including getting their structures largely up to +5 and setting themselves up with T3 enchantments. For those settlements still working their way up, there's a lot of time and effort involved in just doing that, so they're probably better off trading any statue ingredients (particularly T1-2 Remembrances) to the settlements that are working on a statue in exchange for things that will help them in the shorter-term.
Bob
Balcathor
So the burning question I will ask for all those people who neither have a 17th level or higher gatherer or a 20th level refiner or crafter is this - why benefit is it to them to participate?

The sequences all start out with the lowest-level escalations and work their way up, so lower-level characters can still make a big difference by helping clear those escalations out while the higher-level players focus on the tougher escalations. Plus, those lower-level escalations drop Remembrances that can't be obtained anywhere else, so they're still quite valuable. Like Souvenirs in the Home Sweet Home Event, Remembrances generally drop for random escalation entity kills (with the new exception of the Nhur Athemon escalations), meaning even solo lower-level characters can take on smaller groups and still have a chance at getting those rare drops.

This is pretty similar to our past holiday events, most of which were pretty focused on escalation clearing and haven't offered all that much for pure gatherers and crafters. The Home Sweet Home Event was an exception in that regard (and also wasn't technically a "holiday" event), where we made an explicit effort to include gatherers at all levels, but not crafters. That said, the added time pressure for clearing the escalations during an event does tend to drive a lot more gear churn. That's always good for making gatherers and crafters important, though perhaps more after the event than during. This year's event does add a bit more implicit inclusion for higher-level crafters and gatherers with the addition of the temporarily higher exchange rate for Blessings, since one way to get those is through high-level crafting that requires high-level gathered mats, but even then that won't be possible until some adventurers go out and loot the needed recipes. As a result, I still expect most of the Blessings that get traded in to come from loot rather than crafting, and even lower-level adventurers have at least some chance of getting those, however small. And they can always increase their chances by partying up with higher-level characters on some some of the easier escalations, since events give each party member an equal chance at a Blessing or an Aeon Stone.


Bob
Nails
For the raw mats that we are gathering, are there some at each tier or are they only T3 and requiring a level 17, 18, 19, or 20 gatherer?

The new raw mats are all T3 and require a level 17 (or above) gatherer.
Bob
Azure_Zero
Whoa, I don't think we need to the stop of the weakening clock on these End-game escalations, especially given the game's low player population.
They are a pain in the @$$ to deal with requiring about minimum of 2 active T3 geared players to even weaken it out some and fight it, and these things crush +5 Watchtowers easily leaving no chance to fend off them off even when a few want to defend the holding.
I say keep the clock weakening them until the game's population grows.

We'll see how it goes, but with those escalations appearing so rarely, there are groups that will generally show up and clear them once they're found. The strength drops were really just meant to keep hexes from running the same escalation indefinitely by eventually dropping them down to the point where the boss would tempt passing players to take them out, but these escalations seem like tempting, sought-out targets all on their own. They should be even more so with the Remembrances added. Not quite sure that will be enough incentive to get the lower-end escalations tackled more regularly, but if it does, then we'll look at removing the strength drops for them as well.

And if the strength drops turn out to have been necessary, we can add them back in easily in a future build.
Bob
These are the Preliminary Release Notes for Open Enrollment v2.4. We deployed a Final Candidate for OE 2.4 to the Test Server on Tuesday, December 15 and plan to deploy that build to Live during Daily Maintenance on Thursday, December 17, assuming it performs well during final testing.

What Is In This Release

This release focuses on adding new Statue of Pharasma structures and the raw materials, salvage items and recipes for crafting them. It also adds five new sequences for use in this year’s holiday event. Other improvements were also made in order to keep steadily improving the overall player experience.

Full Release Notes

Statue of Pharasma:
  • The Statue of Pharasma is a new artifact-level Infrastructure building that will take a lot of work to craft and will eventually provide corresponding benefits, though for now it mostly provides more DI than any other Infrastructure. The benefits under consideration will require new code and will be added in future updates.
  • Crafting a Statue of Pharasma involves 4 stages of Pharasmin recipes. First raw materials and salvage items are crafted into non-upgradable refined items, like Shifting Elemental Aggregate and Spectral Bone Crystal. Next, some of those refined items are crafted into non-upgradable statue parts, like Limbs of Pharasma. Those are then combined with other refined items and crafted into enhanced statue parts, like Judgment of Pharasma, and this is the first stage where the results can receive upgrades. Finally, the enhanced statue parts are crafted into an upgradable Statue of Pharasma Structure Kit.
  • All 44 new Statue of Pharasma recipes are rare drops mixed in with the standard Tier 3 recipe drops and require level 20 to learn. This is true even for the +0 refining recipes, which are typically Default recipes for their required level. They currently drop at about twice the rate they really should based on their value, in order to make them more likely to drop during the holiday event, and we’re likely to set their drop rates lower as they become more commonly available. The recipes are spread across all crafting and refining feats, so crafting a complete Statue of Pharasma requires the involvement of every type of level 20 crafter.
  • The 30 new raw materials for Pharasmin crafting are available in small amounts from nodes in standard monster hexes, with each type of raw material clustered in a small part of the map. Only the Valuable form of each raw material can be used in the recipes, and other forms can’t be used or sold at Auction Houses. These raw materials cannot be harvested in gushers. At least some of each raw material is required to craft a complete Statue of Pharasma, so raw materials from all parts of the map must be obtained.
  • The 24 new salvage items (Remembrances) for Pharasmin crafting drop as rare loot from escalations whenever enchanting salvage items can drop. Each escalation drops specific types of Remembrances, and crafting a complete Statue of Pharasma requires some of every type of Remembrance, so nearly all escalations must be fought to obtain them.
  • All Pharasmin items are subject to looting and destruction.

Blessing of Pharasma:
  • A Blessing of Pharasma can be converted to a Boon that provides a long-lasting buff. At the end of the holiday event, players can give Blessings to a GM in exchange for Boons at a to-be-declared generous exchange rate. Sometime after the event, all Blessings will be converted to treasure boxes, so that right-clicking on them will give players a choice of a single Boon.
  • First-stage Pharasmin crafting recipes output specific Packs, which can be right-clicked on to provide the actual refined item and a Blessing of Pharasma.
  • Whenever there is a chance of an Aeon Stone dropping, there is also a 50% smaller chance of a Blessing of Pharasma dropping.
  • There are 4 Boons available, each activated like a Token and lasting for 1-2 hours.

Escalations:
  • There are 5 new sequences available for this year’s holiday event. Each sequence runs 5-6 escalations of increasing difficulty, and every standard escalation is included in one of the sequences. The 5 sequences are scattered evenly across the map, meaning every player can have every sequence run near them while the sequences are still running, giving them access to every type of Remembrance.
  • The Shadow/Wrath/Revenge of Nhur Athemon escalations have been altered to drop enchanting items, and thus Remembrances, only when adding to the counters for Events. They will no longer drop such items for killing random escalation entities, which don’t lower the strength of those specific escalations.
  • Seekers from the Citadel, Emerald Aristocrats, Over the Crown, and Gathering of Legends no longer lose strength naturally over time. We may do this to other escalations in the future, particularly if obtaining Remembrances from them results in them being cleared out regularly without the added incentives.
Bob
BlackMoria
Sounds competitive yet you say this event is mainly cooperative.

Unlike some past events, there are no rewards for being the first to complete something or for getting the most of something. For this event, the rewards for clearing sequences will be delivered equally to all active settlements, so cooperation between players/settlements will lead to greater rewards for all.

BlackMoria
Also, I not seeing what the draw would be for someone less than level 17 crafter or refiner as it appears they are the only one who can actually make these things you indicated. What is in it for the others players who don't have those high level characters.

It's true that most of the new content is pretty much end-game content, but building the statues requires rare salvage items (Remembrances) from nearly every standard escalation, including the lower-end ones. Lower-level characters can focus on tackling those escalations and pursuing those Remembrances, either to help their own group build a statue or to sell for gold.

BlackMoria
A statue that takes great effort to make but does exactly what?

We haven't completely sorted this part out because we plan on having the statues do things that will require new code and we don't want to distract Cole too much helping us figure out the details right now. They'll take a long time to build and upgrade anyway, and most of the cooler bonuses will be reserved for higher upgrades, so we'll have some time to sort all that out. For now, we'll just say getting them is a big deal, so we'll make sure having them is an equally big deal.

BlackMoria
Treasure boxes? Blessings that have half the drop rate of Aeon stones but can be traded for tokens which last 1 to 2 hours? Gah! Sorry, Bob. I am having a hard time connecting the dots but that could be just me.

As with many aspects of our game, there are lots of moving parts and jargon involved, so it can take a bit to put it all together. I'll be writing up the release notes for the build and the rules for the event shortly, which should make things a bit clearer, but always feel free to ask for clarification.

Treasure Boxes is just our name for items like the New Player Packs (where right-clicking on them expands them into a bunch of general items) or the Role Packs (where right-clicking on them lets you choose from a list, and you then receive items based on your choice). Blessings don't do anything right now, but later you'll be able to right-click on them and select a Boon.

For crafting, Treasure Boxes can be used as a way to get around the crafting system's restriction to only output a single item type. When you disjoin advanced Aeon Stones, you often get a Treasure Box that you can right-click on to receive the two types of Aeon Stones that went into crafting the more-advanced Stone. For these new first-stage recipes, I'm using Treasure Boxes to give you both a Blessing and the item you crafted.

For the Blessings, we just wanted to give players a choice of Boon, rather than dropping Boons randomly, so we'll be making them Treasure Boxes to give you that choice. We wanted to be a little more generous with the exchange rates just during the event, so we're handling that manually for now. And since we didn't want players accidentally exchanging them for single Boons during the event, we decided to hold off on making them Treasure Boxes until sometime after the event ends.
Bob
Still working up the final details for this year’s holiday event, but we’ve got what we hope is the final build to support the event up on Zog, with plans to deploy that build to Live on Thursday and launch the event sequences on Friday. While I’m writing up a more official announcement, here’s a quick preview of what’s coming in OE 2.4 and what will happen during the event.

Both the build and the event are themed around a new structure, the Statue of Pharasma, which will be our first take on an artifact-level item. These statues will take a great deal of effort and time to build, and their exact capabilities haven’t been fully decided on, but we will be making them worth your while for all the effort required to get them to +5. Building them involves a large number of new raw materials and salvage items (similar to those from the Home Sweet Home Event, though dropping at roughly twice the rate they did then and requiring level 17 gatherers, rising to level 20 over the next year or two or …), as well as a mix of recipes for level 20 crafters and refiners. The recipes go through multiple stages in order to incorporate a significant amount of every new raw material and salvage item, as well as participation from every type of crafter or refiner.

We’re also introducing a new item called a Blessing of Pharasma, which can be traded for your choice of a long-lasting (1-2 hour) boon (similar to a token). These Blessings drop at half the rate of Aeon Stones (under the same circumstances) and are also handed out each time a first-stage recipe is completed (the recipes give you a Pack, also known as a treasure box, which can be right-clicked to convert them to 1 of the refined item and 1 of the Blessings). At the end of the event, you’ll be able to trade those Blessings in to me for your choice of boons at a generous exchange rate. After that, we’ll deploy a new build that will convert all Blessings into treasure boxes that can be right-clicked for your choice of a single boon.

To kickstart the gathering of all the different salvage items (Remembrances) required for the statue recipes, this year’s event focuses on a mix of sequences that will provide plenty of opportunity to gather a good amount of each Remembrance. When the 5 different sequences are launched, each standard monster hex will start running a series of 5-6 escalations that increase in difficulty, covering all the escalations that drop Remembrances between them. There aren’t any assigned hexes this year, and every active settlement will be given a reward based on the number of escalations cleared during the event, making this a largely cooperative event aside from the desire to gather specific Remembrances for your own use. If all the sequences are cleared before the event ends on Monday, February 1, I’ll relaunch the sequences as needed so the number of cleared sequences can keep rising.

Complete rules will be posted on Thursday after the build is deployed to Live. Though the sequences won’t be launched until Friday, you’re free to start stockpiling the new raw materials, salvage items and recipes as soon as the build is available.

Happy Holidays!
Bob
Still a little today left. smile Posting in a new thread momentarily.
Bob
Unfortunately, my day got eaten up when I found a small bug that required prepping a new build tonight. Got that fixed and kicked off the build, but won't have a chance to do a decent write-up of our event plans until tomorrow. Build is looking really solid overall though and our current plan is to deploy it to Live on Thursday, then launch the sequences on Friday.
Bob
Activities and rewards for regularly logging in is something we've discussed internally on multiple occasions, and there's certainly code and content we could leverage to make it happen, at least in a fairly simple form. There's some design work involved to make sure those kinds of guided activities don't detract from the larger goals we want players setting for themselves, particularly in regard to territorial control, but done right and balanced properly it could give players some guidance when they don't have more pressing pursuits.

Even with existing work to leverage, there'd still be a fair amount of code involved, in particular to provide a way for quests and/or rewards to be repeatable on a timed basis, and possibly more in order to provide some of the rewards mentioned (XP specifically, as well as some of the crafting or other bonuses). It probably wouldn't involve an unreasonable amount of work for what we'd be getting, and would certainly be worth considering. As always though, we'd need to figure out where it fits in with our other priorities, including the cloud and Unity work. Alternatively, if there are small, isolated aspects of these ideas that could be done individually, it's possible we could work some of them in as we go, but they may not be as impactful as larger mechanics.