Tuesday, December 9, 2008

EQ2 - Working the System

One of the fun aspects of EQ2's mentoring system is being able to participate in lower level content with friends but as a more powerful character. Even though technically you are at the reduced level of whoever you are mentoring, you still retain a portion of your higher level abilities.

Since the dungeons in the latest expansion could not be completed by many casual players, the mentoring system has been put to use. It was assumed that bringing in a lower level member to mentor would make the dungeons more manageable. Unfortunately, the dungeons didn't scale down well initially, and the level 50 mobs were hitting like level 70 mobs. So players unmentored, making the mobs gray to complete the missions.

While some complained on the forums about this, it didn't seem to really be too much of an issue since you can only do each instance once a day, meaning it will still take weeks to have enough shards for one piece of armor. And with mobs being gray, there are no drops to be had. We've been doing some guild runs but some members have already lost interest. While the dungeons were interesting to figure out and see the first time or two, after that it's just a repetitive grind to get shards.

But the option to obtain shards this way may soon not be available. Seems people have been selling space to enter cleared dungeons for lots of platinum. While this sort of thing has been going in EQ2 for years and really is nothing new, devs have stated on the forums they are looking into this situation. If they remove mentoring capabilities completely from TSO dungeons, there will be a lot of unhappy players.

My hope is that they tweak down at least 3 of the 20 dungeons so they are manageable for casual players. By casual I mean wearing mastercrafted gear and not having the absolute perfect group setup. We are running these with a full group -- one healer, three tanks, and two dps. We're told we need to dump the two other tanks for another healer and dps. I'm not dumping anyone. A full group with a tank and healer should be enough for a dungeon crawl. I don't think anyone really enjoys doing these dungeons gray, so I really do hope they come up with some other options.

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