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Author Topic: EQ 2 Beta - am I being paranoid?  (Read 3386 times)
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DCW
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« on: October 19, 2004, 01:14:21 AM »

Hi, all,

I just got an email informing that I was invited into the EQ2 beta - to the best of my knowledge the only place I signed up was at Gamespot. The address looks valid and all, and the link allows me to download a zip file that contains an executable called setup.exe - it's a 5 MB file, and for some reason my gut reaction is telling me it's a scam and not to do it - anyone else get this email today?
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Arkon
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« Reply #1 on: October 19, 2004, 01:26:51 AM »

DCW, did you also get an activation code?  The file should be roughly 4.4mb, it is a zip with setup.exe inside.  This file then installs the launchpad which downloads the whole client.  However the client is useless if they didn't include an activation code.
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DCW
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« Reply #2 on: October 19, 2004, 01:32:08 AM »

Sure did, Arkon - I took the plunge - game is installing now smile I'm glad - I wanted to check it out, even though most of my EQ buds are jumping to WoW. EQ's had more play time than any game I've ever owned, so I'm naturally curious. Thanks for the reply!

Dave
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Jeff
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« Reply #3 on: October 19, 2004, 01:45:17 AM »

I got in too, also signed up at Gamespot. Good luck getting subscribed though, the reg server seems to be down.
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DCW
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« Reply #4 on: October 19, 2004, 01:49:05 AM »

I had to keep closing and restarting the intial interface load - it kept stalling out. Once I got that done, the game login interface started, I was able to activate my account, and now I'm downloading the actual game files - eta is about 4 hours right now, so I'll check it out tomorrow.
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The Grue
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« Reply #5 on: October 19, 2004, 03:11:54 AM »

Lucky ducks!!!  I never win those Gamespot giveaways. frown  I was hoping to get in, too, because I would like to try EQ2 and WoW betas to see which one I am going to go with.
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Jeff
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« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2004, 03:32:18 AM »

DJ, check your messages.
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Redfive
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« Reply #7 on: October 19, 2004, 04:02:15 AM »

Got in...my connection is pretty much crap so I'll d/l overnight.
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Animus
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« Reply #8 on: October 19, 2004, 04:04:10 AM »

Man, up until WoW and EQ2 I've always had the best luck with betas. Now I'm suprised I even could get in the WoW stress test.  :?
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Zarkon
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« Reply #9 on: October 19, 2004, 04:23:38 AM »

I'm in WoW, but signed up for EQ2 back when beta signups hit...still not in it either.  Ah well, it's not like I was gonna buy either. smile
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Rhinohelix
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« Reply #10 on: October 19, 2004, 07:38:22 AM »

I have been pretty lucky this year with betas, just not either of my two most anticpated games of the year.   My only complaint is I wished there was room between the launch of each because I want to play both and with near simultanious releases and a fairly new family, both won't be happening. frown   WoW went from also-ran to really competitive during the stress test for me.  It was a ton of fun.  EQ2 is such a deep world though.  lean EQ2 just based on prior game experience and that addiction effect.  Even after a couple of years away, it calls to me.  :twisted:   While they share some things in common, it will be neat to see how each paradigm plays out.  I  am extremely envious, DCW; congrats and good hunting. smile

Rhino
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DCW
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« Reply #11 on: October 19, 2004, 10:47:05 AM »

I NEVER get into betas - unless they're the open kind smile I'm sort of glad, because I'm kinda sorta in the same boat, Rhino - I'll only be playing one because of family, work, and school, so at least now I'll be able to make an informed decision. The WoW stress test was a lot of fun, and so far that's got the edge, but just hearing that EQ intro music scored by an orchestra was impressive, and seeing how detailed the character creation is (think CoH, but even more detailed in some ways), I'm going to have to give EQ2 a serious try.
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Charlatan
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« Reply #12 on: October 19, 2004, 11:55:13 AM »

You lucky dogs who get in - please give a review now and then. smile

I"m especially interested in whether the voiceovers become annoying or not, since this is one of EQ2's distinguishing features.
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YellowKing
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« Reply #13 on: October 19, 2004, 12:13:16 PM »

Quote
I"m especially interested in whether the voiceovers become annoying or not, since this is one of EQ2's distinguishing features.


I haven't found that to be the case yet, simply because there is a lot of differentiation among voices. Iksar sound appropriately ssss-caly, gnomes are squeaky, evil characters are nasty and mean. Plus if you're a fast reader you can just ignore the voice-over and click through the conversation. One nice thing is that if you choose to click through, the voice over immediately fades out and goes to the next dialogue. So you're never in a position where you have to listen to something you don't want to. Most of the time I find myself listening to the voice overs even after I've read the dialogue, just because a lot of the time the acting is so well done.

I haven't checked yet, but I imagine in the sound options you can turn them off. There are a LOT of customization options in-game.
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Animus
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« Reply #14 on: October 19, 2004, 02:15:26 PM »

I don't think we're talking about voiceovers when you engage an NPC in conversation. In nearly every beta post or journal I've read they say it's the random ones that test the nerves. Stuff like 'if I hear "Qeynos is a shining beacon of light!' or 'Come and browse the finest wares in Qeynos!" again I'm throwing my computer out the window.' Apparently even if they're voiced by different actors, there's about 4 lines that are endlessly repeated verbatim as you travel through the towns. I've even seen videos that confirm this (as well as a worrisome lack of diminishing volume even as you turn three corners and get 200 ft. away from the offending NPC. Now obviously this could change, or may already have but I assume that's the annoying part.
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Destructor
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« Reply #15 on: October 19, 2004, 04:42:07 PM »

Quote from: "Animus"
I don't think we're talking about voiceovers when you engage an NPC in conversation. In nearly every beta post or journal I've read they say it's the random ones that test the nerves. Stuff like 'if I hear "Qeynos is a shining beacon of light!' or 'Come and browse the finest wares in Qeynos!" again I'm throwing my computer out the window.'

Yes, I do have to admit that the locals do chatter a bit as you run by, but it's not as bad as they make it out to be.

But, yes, some NPCs have the amazing ability to be very clearly heard through the most solid of objects.
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Arkon
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« Reply #16 on: October 19, 2004, 04:42:29 PM »

If an npc starts talking and I walk away I no longer hear thier voices.  Personally even with common phrases I still enjoy hearing the worle be alive... they have also said that voiceovers will be continually added post release.
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JRC1978
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« Reply #17 on: October 20, 2004, 01:45:56 AM »

Man, you lucky dogs.  I have applied for every beta since EQ1 and have never been invited to a single beta. Not through any contest or from the game devs themselves. Nothin, nada, zilch. I hate all of you..... :lol:

On a more serious note, how is the EQ2 Beta?  I have read quite a bit about WoW, and it seems really cool but I know nothing about the EQ2 beta and how it is coming along.  Anyone played both (and if you have I hate you even more) and have opinions regarding the two games comparatively?
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Hetz
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« Reply #18 on: October 20, 2004, 01:04:07 PM »

Dangit all. I signed up for the Gamespot contest and got jack.  crybaby

I really wanted to try out EQ2, since I was a huge fan of EQ1. I've signed up for all the beta signups for this game and still haven't gotten in anywhere...

*sigh*
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YellowKing
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« Reply #19 on: October 20, 2004, 02:16:43 PM »

Quote
On a more serious note, how is the EQ2 Beta? I have read quite a bit about WoW, and it seems really cool but I know nothing about the EQ2 beta and how it is coming along. Anyone played both (and if you have I hate you even more) and have opinions regarding the two games comparatively?


I've played both, but have not put nearly as much time in the EQ2 beta as I have the WoW (I just got into EQ2 a couple of nights ago, and only had played a few hours on a friend's account before that.)

First let me state that both games are really fun, and both games seem to be stable and more highly polished than most MMO's at this stage of the game. That's not to say either one is perfect or has every feature implemented, but in their current state they are as playable as most MMOs are a month after launch.

WoW is a bit more newbie friendly and I believe will ultimately be a bit better for casual and/or solo play. EQ2 is a little more hardcore, and though you can solo, grouping will be the most efficient way to advance.

Both games have comparable quest systems. You could almost level exclusively off quests in either game.

Both games' combat systems are similar in that they incorporate attack skills (for fighter types) or spells (for magic users) in addition to the "click and watch until the monster dies" standard MMO combat. EQ2 adds a combat wheel that is initiated when using certain skills. By performing skills in a certain order (dictated by the wheel), a bonus attack (or buff) is unleashed. The combat wheel is available in solo play, but is really meant for group play against higher level mobs.

WoW has fewer classes, but augments this with a talent system in which players can customize their characters by putting points into a Diablo 2-type skill tree. EQ2 uses a branching system in which players start out as one of four archetypes, then select a subclass at level 10 and a specialization at level 20. EQ2 has just announced some further specialization options such as skills and racial traits, but they have not been implemented yet.

Graphically WoW uses a stylistic cartoon-style world that is nevertheless beautifully done and rich in detail. EQ2 goes the more realistic route; character models don't look that great but the armor and equipment is really something to behold. WoW will run more smoothly on lower-to-mid range systems.

WoW uses a crafting system sort of like DAoC's - select item from a submenu, click a button to craft. EQ2's system is a bit more involved - random events will occur during the course of crafting that must be counteracted, sort of like in a fight. Failure to do so could at best make your product lesser quality or at worse out and out kill you. Items can be made of varying qualities depending on the resources you use, your skill at "fighting" the forge, and the amount of time you wish to invest in crafting the item.

WoW's death penalty is basically having to run back to your corpse. EQ2's death penalty has several aspects. First you get hit with an XP debt. Any XP you earn after dying will be partially spent paying on your debt and partially spent as normal XP advancing your level. In other words, until your debt is paid off you're earning XP at a slower rate. In addition you will take a temporary stat decrease, and your equipment is damaged. Equipment can be repaired, though if its durability drops to 0 it becomes useless. Corpse retrieval is not strictly necessary, but reclaiming your corpse recovers a "spirit shard" that will immediately wipe out 3/4 of your XP debt. WoW's death penalty will appeal to players who want to concentrate on the fun of the game and don't want to be bothered with steep punishments for dying. EQ2's death penalty will appeal to players who want some risk involved.

Having played both betas now, which game you will enjoy more will depend on your playstyle. WoW is a highly polished blend of MMOs to come before it. It's great for casual and solo play, though the option is there for high-level raids and dungeons. To me, WoW was a "turn your brain off and just have fun" type of game.

EQ2 also incorporates a blend of the MMOs to come before it, while adding a few unique features of its own. While solo play is certainly possible in EQ2, the gameplay will tend to emphasize grouping. EQ2, while much more newbie-friendly and casual compared to EQ1, is still a bit more hardcore in terms of death penalty, learning curve, etc.

Both games, I feel, push the genre forward and will be around for years to come.
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Greggy_D
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« Reply #20 on: October 20, 2004, 05:04:30 PM »

I never get in either to ANY that I sign up for.  I can't imagine what they are looking for in the applications you fill out.  I'm starting to wonder if they just randomly pick "winners".
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« Reply #21 on: October 20, 2004, 06:20:38 PM »

It doesn't hurt to know people, if you get my drift.  That said, I've never gotten in either :evil:
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YellowKing
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« Reply #22 on: October 20, 2004, 07:04:07 PM »

Quote
I'm starting to wonder if they just randomly pick "winners".


A lot of time that's exactly what they're doing. Particularly in big betas like EQ2 and WoW. At most they might be saying, "Ok let's pick 1000 low-end systems, 1000 mid-range systems, and 1000 high-end systems."

The only reason I got into WoW's beta was knowing someone. The only reason I got into the EQ2 beta was I got lucky and won a contest.

One thing that can help you get into betas is past experience (though in these big random high-profile betas it rarely helps.) When I first started getting heavy into beta testing, I simply signed up for every beta I could find. Didn't matter which game. Out of 10-15 I got in 1 or 2. The next time I filled out a beta app, I put those two games down under past experience and kept going. Over time I've built up a fairly solid list of betas I've participated in over a wide range of genres, and I usually stand a pretty good chance of getting in - particularly if I have beta experience in the same genre.
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« Reply #23 on: October 20, 2004, 09:42:08 PM »

YK, I have to say, that was a well written, very non-opinionated presentation.

I was expecting a clear EQ2 win from you, but you presented WoW quite well imho.

Doesn't help me make my mind up though  :x
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programmerbob
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« Reply #24 on: October 21, 2004, 02:03:09 AM »

One thing that WoW has that EQ2 doesn't is PvP(at this point anyway).

If PvP appeals to you world of warcraft is the way to go.(I'm in sturmgrenadier-sghq.com a top notch guild if your looking for PvP)
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morlac
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« Reply #25 on: October 21, 2004, 04:44:03 PM »

Quote from: "Animus"
I don't think we're talking about voiceovers when you engage an NPC in conversation. In nearly every beta post or journal I've read they say it's the random ones that test the nerves. Stuff like 'if I hear "Qeynos is a shining beacon of light!' or 'Come and browse the finest wares in Qeynos!" again I'm throwing my computer out the window.' Apparently even if they're voiced by different actors, there's about 4 lines that are endlessly repeated verbatim as you travel through the towns. I've even seen videos that confirm this (as well as a worrisome lack of diminishing volume even as you turn three corners and get 200 ft. away from the offending NPC. Now obviously this could change, or may already have but I assume that's the annoying part.


Good thing theres an option in Audio seetings that enables you to turn off the voices completely or have it set on once only.  Meaning you will here it the first time and that is it.
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