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Archive for May, 2013

A generous surprise

May 31, 2013 Comments off

In a previous post I wrote about that Funcom decided to give all players with level 80 characters an additional 40 AA points (expertise points) this week and another 40 AA points 50 days later.

What I and I think many with me assumed, was that every level 80 character would get 40 AA points if they were on an active premium/member account. It turns out that this was not quite correct. Instead every character, regardless of level, were given 40 AA points, as long as there were at least one level 80 character on the account.

That was more generous than expected and a nice surprise!

I am glad also because there were some concerns with the other interpretation that Funcom was encouraging rushing through the content with this move. However, with the requirement being just a single kevek 80 character to get the points it becomes much more sane.

It is a bit limited what one can use the points on before level 80, so some people may want to save some of them until they reach level 80.

Good work, Funcom!

Categories: Age of Conan

Anniversary AA bonus

May 27, 2013 Comments off

When the 5th anniversary of Age of Conan started Funcom announced that they made some improvements to the premium membership program – members will get AA points (alternate advancement) everytime a character levels.

Compared to what was before, where characters would get maybe a couple of points at most before reaching level 80, if they were members during that time. Now they will have received 80+ points at max level.

A lot of people thought this was a great move and certainly an added incentive to go premium.

But – there always is a but – a number of people were also annoyed because they would not get these extra AA points, because they had leveled their character to max level already, in recent months.

So in response to this, Funcom decided to add a special additional reward. On May 29th, premium members with level 80 characters will receive an additional 40 AA points. Then 50 days later, every active member will receive 40 AA points extra for characters at level 80.

I do not think Funcom needed to do this; it was a nice improvement and certainly a good step towards bringing in more paying players. It is however a nice change – it gives current players some extra points for max level characters and also a chance for people to level their characters to max and get something extra for that as well.

Well done, Funcom!

Categories: Age of Conan

More monster bash

May 26, 2013 Comments off

After a long day helping my nephew study for a physics exam, I jumped into Age of Conan again this evening for a bit of monster hunting.  The new monster for today was a Leviathus Spawn, which could spawn either in Dragon’s Spire area or in Khopshef province, near Black Castle. Being more familiar with Khopshef, I decided to do a bit of Monster Watch in the different instances of Khopshef. I was not the only one doing that.

Monster Watch in Khopshef

Monster Watch in Khopshef

After about one hour the watch paid off  and some spotted the Leviathus Spawn roaming around. The call went out, more people gathered and then the bash began.  Being the new kid on the block, a lot of people jumped in to meet this … thing.

Read more…

Categories: Age of Conan

Monster bash

May 25, 2013 Comments off

The 5th anniversary of Age of Conan is on-going right now – which includes the new feature of major monster attacks in various places in Hyboria. It is pretty fun and is increasing in activity and intensity each day.

Vistrix lookalike attacking Tarantia

Vistrix lookalike attacking Tarantia

The whole event is ongoing for 5 days, started on Thursday the 23rd. During the first day one monster, the dragon above, started attacking in different areas of Tarantia (Noble District and Commons District), i.e. mid- and high-level areas. For day 2 on Friday, the Kraken started to attack in the harbour in Khemi – and the dragon continues to attack as well.

On Saturday, a big Ice Worm started to appear in some places in Cimmeria (Eiglophian Mountains & Ymir’s Pass), with the other two fellows continuing their attacks. Two additional monsters are supposed to be added to this gang on Sunday and Monday, with all five of them going wild on Monday.

Kraken attacking in Khemi harbour

Kraken attacking in Khemi harbour

If a player is nearby when the monster is defeated, they get a mission to go visit a story-teller, just outside Tarantia. If one tells this story-teller about the monster slaying, he will give you a box with a reward. This box contains some random reward. Most of the time it is just some kind of “social” effect (e.g. icy trail when running), but sometimes the rewards can be more valuable.

Zelmira, my Herald of Xotli, have been in 3 different fights so far and got the social effect drops in two cases and an epic armor piece in one case. Much better item than anything I had before, so that was a most welcome reward!

Yahkmar body double messing around in Eiglophian Mountains

Yahkmar body double messing around in Eiglophian Mountains

Funcom (Joel Bylos) has also stated that as the event progresses, the chance for good rewards will increase each day. Too bad I am out of town on Monday, although will hopefully have a bit of time on Sunday to play as well. Even if I possibly may not be able to do any more monster fights and there has been some issues around this; overall I think it has been a fairly good event. Quite nice idea!

Hopefully something like this will be back in some form later, at least during next anniversary – perhaps with an additional monster then ? (6 monsters for 6th anniversary)

Categories: Age of Conan

Happy anniversary, Age of Conan!

May 22, 2013 1 comment

Tomorrow is the 5th anniversary for Age of Conan, on May 23rd.

It is a game that certainly has seen some ups and downs. The launch was far from perfect, there were various issues and some game systems may not have worked out as well as the developers may have hoped. But it was and still is a great fantasy setting and not your cookie cutter fantasy MMO.

For me this is currently my 4th visit into the game, each time have so far lasted 2-3 months. Similar to Guild Wars it took me a few visits for me to embrace it, but I quite enjoy it now.

The anniversary, starting tomorrow, promises a few interesting things:

In-game events with big monsters attacking, everyone can participate to fight them. Sound like this could be fun (and makes me think about some City of Heroes events, with the everyone-can-participate part)

Changes & improvements to membership/premium accounts (permanent, not just during the anniversary):

  • Alternate advancement points will now be earned every time a character level. This will help close the gap somewhat between fresh max levels and old veterans, in terms of abilities
  • An item which gives double XP for one hour, per day. This sounds quite similar to what membership/premium accounts get in The Secret World
  • Additional bonus points per month (200) to use in item shop

Various gifts and items are promised to be available. Members also get additional discounts in the in-game store. During the celebrations access is also opened for everyone to Khitai, i.e. the areas in the Rise of the Godslayer expansion.

Between May 19th and May 30th anyone who buys a 3, 6 or 12 months also gets 50% extra game time.

When Age of Conan originally went into its hybrid business model (would not quite all it “free to play”) it was a somewhat restrictive model. Since then it has opened up more and essentially the whole original game is available without requiring the player to pay. It was even perhaps to the point that there was not much reason to go premium/member unless you wanted to play end-game content. Some of the changes announced here will probably give more incentives to people to pay the membership/subscription fee, if they like the game.

Categories: Age of Conan

Final ding and entering Khitai

May 21, 2013 Comments off

Tonight Zelmira, my Herald of Xotli, got her final ding and reached level 80 in Age of Conan. This was while starting to do a few of the first missions in Khitai. It is really nice to have reached this point and I am still continuing to gain appreciation for the game – I am curious on the faction gameplay in Khitai and what other things to try out at this point.

I still have the level 80 part of the Destiny missions to do also, so I will head back to Kheshatta later to do that.

Khitai1

I have mostly enjoyed the ride to 80, although some parts were better than others and for other characters I may use some of the offline levels that have been piling up to speed up things a little bit from time to time. Many of the missions towards the end were team-oriented missions and I still have a bunch of those to complete, which I hope to do later.

This is my 3rd fantasy MMO where I have reached max level, the other two being World of Warcraft (at level 60) and Guild Wars (at level 20). Most likely there will be more characters reaching max level in this game.

In two days the 5 year anniversary of Age of Conan will start also, so it feels nice to finally reach the max level at this time just before celebrations stat.

Categories: Age of Conan

Back to the City of Steam

May 20, 2013 4 comments

A bit over a week ago City of Steam, a steampunk-inspired, browser-based dungeon crawler/MMO-type game went into open beta. So it is kind of launched, but not quite.

I November/December of 2012 the game had 4 closed beta weekends, which I played a bit in. So now it has been time to see what the state of the game is, what has changed and if it is worth playing. And my answer to that last part is – yes, it could be worth playing. But it is a bit bumpy ride.

Biker1 Read more…

Categories: City of Steam