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1481  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / EQ2 hints and tips on: November 16, 2004, 04:28:24 PM
I'm starting this just for the hints, tips and help to enjoy EQ2 more.  A lot of good info is being posted in the impressions thread but getting lost in all of the posts.  Please leave complaints and impressions out of this thread.

Tip - remove the call for help hotbar button or move it to another hotbar...I've blown a quest (killing a monster) because I hit it by accident while going for a spell.  You can also remove the sit/stand button since the key stroke is s and x.  Gets more important after lvl 8+ when you have more skills and spells than space on the initial hotbar.

Tip - create a macro and set it to "/show all friends" while removing combat and ooc messages.  This will let you have a seperate text window that shows when your friends come online.
1482  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Everquest 2 - first impressions on: November 16, 2004, 12:57:31 PM
Couple comments:

The Broker - the broker sells items from other players.  And since they have to be online to sell then it's entirely dependent on someone with that item selling at that time.  I don't know if it works for normal shop items but I have had limited success finding certain items like roots.  It will get better as more people advance and start selling full time.

The Pelts - hit the outside areas and try for a new instance of the zone.  I have no problems getting 2-3 pelts, 2-3 roots and 2-3 groups of tin in 10 minutes or so of walking through oakmyst.  A lot is timing again...if you're in there and there are 50 people harvesting then come back later or try another instance (much more common on the full servers).

The hotbar and crafting - excellent idea.  Most people will specialize and only use a limited number of knowledge buttons and it's much easier than flipping pages in the book.  Personally I'm going as a scribe so I can make most of my spells instead of buying them (made my first 3 last night and it cost about 1/3 of buying them).  I could also make a tidy profit early on at 5s a spell if people are actually buying them (I've seen only a few selling).  Crafting is time consuming though...I spent about 3 hours getting my levels up, making the subcomponents and then the final product.  

Other ideas - check the forums for ideas such as creating a new macro text window just for alerts when your friends sign on.  Also creating new macros to filter out a chat window that doesn't include combat text (which can overwhelm tells and conversations).  Appartently most of the EQ1 slash commands work as well but aren't documented officially (like  /show all friends).

As for the game in general...I'm loving it.  I have a primary character now, in a guild and I'm actually having fun when I play.  I don't die as much, pick my groups more carefully and haven't run into many rude people (I have run into some though).  I'm close to level 11 and leveling does slow down after 10 and apparently slows down a lot after 20.  No problems at all with the game either except the memory leak...just have to reboot each day and I'm fine.  No graphical problems or crashes.
1483  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Half Life 2 - the reviews are in on: November 15, 2004, 08:19:04 PM
I'm surprised...I expected slightly higher especially compared to some of the recent console titles that have come out and their scores.
1484  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Everquest 2 - first impressions on: November 15, 2004, 06:48:14 PM
Well, my character impressions after a long 4 day playing period:

Mage - my favorite by far.  I love the various spells and the robes stand out in the multitude of beginning armors.  The hallmark quest was very easy and I finished it in around an hour to become a sorcerer.  No groups required except for the optional orc chief quest in the beginning island.  Judging from the damage listing on eq2players there are some powerful spells (400+ damage in one hit).    

Priest - my primary backup and second favorite class.  I found it easy to solo except for 1 place...the hallmark quest.  The fairy part of the hallmark quest requires a group unless you want your ass handed to you.  I got through it grouped with another priest and a fighter with no problems.  Much in demand because of the healing and res. features.  Currently a shaman and getting some decent powers.

Fighter - getting ready to delete's boring to me and just not as much fun.  He's a real tank and does a lot of damage but it's just not for me.

Scout - also fun.  I like playing the scout (and hope to get to ranger) but I'm worried about the time investment.  I'm concentrating on the priest and mage for now.  There are rumors that the hallmark quest is bugged or much harder post patch.  Even at level 6 he can do some nice damage (sneak attach and then quick strike equals +10, +4, +7, +4 damage best so far for a total of 25 damage in two hits and much better than my fighter at the same level).  All at app 1 levels.

Other things:

Money is scarce and space to store items is very scarce.  These seem to be major complaints on the main forums and come up very often.  I like the money system since everything is actually valuable and you don't just carry bags of gold and ruin the economy.  Also money has weight...make sure to convert your copper to silver at the bank or face getting overloaded.

Learn the key commands and shortcuts...they save time and effort and make your life much easier.

I haven't had much lag even on full servers (Crushbone, Lucan, etc) but some people are really bad off.  One member of my group drowned because he was in water and lagged for a full minute before getting control back.  He also took 15 minutes to cross the harbor while I took 5.
1485  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Is there any way to run EQ II in 16bit color? on: November 15, 2004, 04:05:44 PM
No, one of the devs in the forum (and in the FAQ) stated that 32bit and Directx 9c are required to play.  In addition the desktop should also be set to 32bit before starting EQ2.  

For anyone else wondering (all two of you) Geforce MX cards are not supported in any way.  Also Geforce 6xxx series cards require the latest drivers to prevent tearing and graphic problems.
1486  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Does anybody else need to lose some weight? on: November 15, 2004, 01:43:15 AM
I'm also close to 6'2 and around 210 right now...was down to 200 before I went on vacation a couple weeks ago.  Right now I'm trying to maintain through the's just too hard to really cut back until New Years.
1487  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Zoo Tycoon 2 is out on: November 12, 2004, 09:43:12 PM
It was $34.99 and includes the National Geographic DVD and "limited" pen with it as well.  I just happened to buy both since EQ2 was also on sale.
1488  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Everquest 2 - first impressions on: November 12, 2004, 09:41:41 PM
I've been solo the past few days (except for one quest that was optional) and have had no problems.  I did have to group to kill the orc chief but everything else has been solo as a mage.  I haven't even had to wait for respawns to complete the beginning quests which is something I can not say for WoW.  It may be that I'm on a light server and not a medium or heavy load but it is possible at least early on.

I'd like to add that I'm loving it so far.  I appeciate the art and direction WoW took but really love the EQ world.  Given the choice between the two I picked EQ2 and I'm glad I did (hopefully I'll say the same thing 3 months from now).
1489  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Best Game of All Time Round 4 on: November 12, 2004, 04:22:34 PM

Ultima VII
The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind
Planescape: Torment


Baldur's Gate 2
Diablo 2
Knights of the Old Republic
Deus Ex

I haven't voted in the previous 3 so I hope it's ok for this one.
1490  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / EQ2 Servers and Characters on: November 12, 2004, 03:22:36 PM
I'd love to meet up and group with some reliable people from here...especially on the beginning island.  I'll look up my name when I get home and edit my post above.  Hopefully I'll be playing some this afternoon and some more tonight.
1491  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Zoo Tycoon 2 is out on: November 12, 2004, 01:35:42 PM
I got this on sale at Target along with Everquest II yesterday and my wife played it for a few hours.  Basic impressions: It's not bad.  She didn't have any crashes or apparent memory drains and it appears to be true 3D.  Graphically it looks much better than the previous but it's going to take a much better computer and video card to run at the same level.
1492  Gaming / Multiplayer Madness (MMO or otherwise) / EQ2 Servers and Characters on: November 12, 2004, 12:57:25 PM
Allyssa - Highkeep Lvl 11

Brenia - Highkeep Lvl 9 high elf sorcerer (good) Highkeep Circle Guild
Retalis - Crushbone Lvl 10 Shaman (good)
1493  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Everquest 2 - first impressions on: November 12, 2004, 12:28:55 PM
I'm in Highkeep right was one of the new servers they opened when the others went to medium and high status.  No lag at all...and not a lot of people on my server which is still nice.  I'm starting as a mage now and it seems like everybody I've seen is playing everything but a mage...something I don't know?  I played for hours and I was the only character casting spells (that I saw).
1494  Non-Gaming / Steals and Deals / EQ2 DVD Version for... on: November 12, 2004, 02:25:11 AM
It's also $39 at Best Buy and Target this week.
1495  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Hotmail finally upgraded on: November 11, 2004, 08:15:01 PM
Damn, now my account (which I've had for years) is wiped like a brand new one and I'm still at 2MB.  Thankfully I'm using gmail now so no big deal but it's still irritating.
1496  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Everquest 2 - first impressions on: November 11, 2004, 08:10:29 PM
Damn forum...I had no plans to get this.  Now it's installed and I'm getting ready to play for the first time.  Any CG guilds or preferred servers yet?
1497  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Everquest 2 - first impressions on: November 11, 2004, 11:47:28 AM
Olaf...the problem may be your ATI card.  Most new games seem to always have trouble with ATI cards when they come out especially if you're using the newest drivers.  I know some other people in the main forum have also complained (that have ATI) and it seems most people on here that have NVidia cards are loving it even with lower CPU/memory hardware.  Maybe some conflict or a ATI fix coming soon?
1498  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / [p] Ashcroft Resigns on: November 10, 2004, 09:07:57 PM
It would have to be Gonzales wouldn't it.  Could Bush make one important choice without fucking it up?  There has to be some other Texas friends he can pay off better suited than Gonzales.  Well I enjoyed my civil liberties while I had them...but I'm not counting on keeping them over the next 4 years.
1499  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Everquest 2 - first impressions on: November 10, 2004, 09:04:45 PM
Thanks for the posts Abaddon.  I've read through them so far but please use a few more paragraphs in there...those are some long paragraphs.  And keep away damn forum effect.  I feel my resolve weakening.
1500  Non-Gaming / Steals and Deals / Last day for Blockbuster (gamerush) trade-in special on: November 10, 2004, 06:18:27 PM
This may be a YMMV unless it just started today.  I know certain parts of the country had a promotion to get $20 off if you traded 2 games in but it only applied to a list of "newer" games.  I was in mine in Charlotte yesterday when I bought the LE Halo 2 and they did not have this promotion running (I really wish they did).
1501  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Everquest 2 - first impressions on: November 10, 2004, 01:20:59 PM
I'm very tempted to get into this...but damn I don't think I have the time to make it worthwhile (or the money really).  I wish it was $10 a month or that the 90 day card was cheaper than buying 3 30 day cards.
1502  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Which hard drive to buy on: November 09, 2004, 05:27:22 PM
Most of the retail boxed hard drives have dropped to 1 year.  Many non retail WD drives have also dropped to 1 year.  After losing 2 Western Digital drives this year I'm avoiding them.  Maxtor just increased their non retail drives to 3 years and 5 years like Seagate.  All three are top names and seem to have about the same reliability...I've just had awful luck with WD myself.
1503  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Disneyland on the Cheap? on: November 09, 2004, 04:57:14 PM
I don't know about California but in Florida the Thanksgiving week is one of the busiest of the year.  In comparison it's almost deserted the week AFTER Thanksgiving.  I made the mistake of going Thanksgiving week last year to Orlando and everybody (it seems) was there...2 hour waits on every ride, horrible traffic, etc.  3 years ago I went the week after and it was so nice...walked on most rides with no wait, no crowds, much less traffic, etc.
1504  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / George RR Martins Latest Book on: November 07, 2004, 05:56:11 PM
Erikson is another great epic series...I could hardly get through the half of the first book.  By the time I finished it I had already ordered books 3 and 4 and started reading book 2 straight away.
1505  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Swapping my XBOX for Gamecube on: November 07, 2004, 05:50:07 PM
Why not get a used Gamecube and try it out.  If you shop around you could get Zelda used and a used gamecube for around $70 or even less...throw in another used game and a memory card and you're still under $100.
1506  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Issue at work on: November 06, 2004, 03:23:34 PM
I agree with Viggo.  You complained about the boss to the business manager who is probably friends with your boss.  Now your boss is pissed off and you are in the crosshairs.  Things like the presentation slipup....nothing except trouble they can document in your record when they try to get rid of you.  I would go to your HR dept (if you have one) immediately.  Show them the email, explain it was supposed to be confidential, throw an absolute fit it was told and then shown to your boss and explain what you're going through now.   As it is unless you're totally irreplacable you will probably be gone in a matter of months.
1507  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / This Is Fun Pt 3: This Time It's Personal! (possibly NSFW) on: October 28, 2004, 09:58:21 PM
Holy crap is that clown pic disturbing.
1508  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Longhorn on: October 28, 2004, 08:34:58 PM
I'll be trying it but not until it gets out of Alpha and into the Beta stage.  I am a little disappointed that the WinFS (Windows File System and replacement for Fat32 and NTFS) has been delayed and will not be released with Longhorn.  As usual the Microsoft site is the best for general information on it:
1509  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Nintendo files suit against fan...UPDATE apology issued. on: October 28, 2004, 08:31:22 PM
That site is very NSFW.  Not all of it is pay and there are a lot of pictures posted in the forums that aren't blocked (and many that are too).  

As for the lawsuit it's total BS.  This is not only a case where the judge should toss it out right away but should penalize Nintendo for filing a frivilous (and stupid) lawsuit and wasting the court's time.
1510  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Paper Mario 2 Impressions on: October 28, 2004, 08:28:46 PM
Well I guess enough people are loving it for me to keep it to eventually play.  I have to take a week off from gaming and put some more time into SA but I will be opening and keeping PM2.  Of course I was 90% sold just after watching the demo anyway smile
1511  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / GTA: SA Impressions on: October 28, 2004, 08:26:37 PM
I was thinking this morning I wished it had a walkman since I'm spending so much time on foot.  

I think the biggest thing is: if you didn't like or get into GTA3 or Vice City then you aren't going to get into SA.  If you liked the previous games you will probably like SA.  If you loved the previous two and aren't dead set on the 80's theme then you will likely love SA even more.
1512  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / GTA: SA Impressions on: October 28, 2004, 03:56:47 PM
Well after 5 hours or so I'm still giving it an A- or a strong B+.  I'm having fun with it, have no problems with the graphics at all and I think the map is fine if a little small (I do have a 32" TV using SVideo though and apparently that helps a great deal).  No brightness problems and I'm tempted to get the HD Loader to get rid of the indoor/outdoor load times.

Things I like:
A much bigger selection of songs and radio stations than I was expecting.
I can swim now (but no one else can *heh*)
Much harder to get multiple stars (the wanted level)
Motorcycles are much easier to drive now
The damn huge variety...everything is huge and something is going on everywhere

Things I don't like:
No mission replay (I understand it's a constant world and you're supposed to continue on if you fail the mission but...)
Early missions are hard until you get the controls and mechanics down
The gang AI with you is stupid.  I failed more than one mission because I was the only one to get out of the burning car.

Things some people may hate but I don't:
The graphics...they are PS2 and I expected that (helps I never played the PC versions)
The extensive foul language
The majority of the songs

Basically I thought I would hate this game and had no interest in it.  Read some previews and watched the commercials.  Got a good deal on it.  Now I'm really into it.  My favorite of the three so far and it helps that I will have it finished 6 months before any other system gets it.
1513  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Bah a Pox on you AT&T on: October 27, 2004, 10:27:45 PM
Yeah, I switched from AT&T to Verizon and while there have been a few problems Verizon's customer service is far and above the level I had with AT&T.  I don't even want to go into the AT&T credit cards...they're part of the reason companies like Capital One are taking off (and taking their customers).
1514  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Buying an and controller recs wanted on: October 27, 2004, 03:55:56 PM
I have the older heavy logitech wireless and it's great...rock solid and have never noticed any problems with button response or loose buttons/thumbsticks.

Right now is a great time for cheap games at Toys R Us...especially the newer ones still at $50 you have on your list.   The Blockbuster Gamerush stores also have a good selection of used XBox games and they're running a buy 1 get 1 50% off sale on all preowned as well...quick and easy way to pick up the ones not quite new (like Project Gotham Racing 2 and Crimson Skies for a total of $27.)
1515  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / Serial Mouse on: October 27, 2004, 12:21:32 PM
I have a whole box of them but I couldn't send one until Nov 9 or so.  If you don't find one before then let me know and I'll get one to you.
1516  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Paper Mario 2 Impressions on: October 27, 2004, 12:18:40 PM
Ok, what happened?  Did anyone finish the game?  Did it stay as good or get better towards the end or did it fall flat?  Is it still anyone's RPG GOTY?  I bought it at the Toys R Us sale but haven't opened it yet.
1517  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / GTA: SA Impressions on: October 26, 2004, 08:21:28 PM
Yes, I got it today Toys R Us.  So now $50 for me...more like $33 (with 2 other $33 games as well) but still well worth it.

The only bad thing is I can't play it until tomorrow night frown  But I do have Thursday off smile
1518  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Need comp advice: urgent on: October 26, 2004, 01:52:19 PM
I've used Sparkle (SPI) and Antec and have had no problems with either.  They are both rock solid and dependable and the Antec is highly rated for home gaming use.  The Sparkle is used in a lot of server cases so it's long lived and also very stable.  If you get an Antec them make sure it's a "TRUE" model and not the cheaper model.   If you're getting a 6800 later on then I would go with a 430-500 watt at a minimum so you don't have to upgrade later...I have a TRUE430 and a 6800 GT and have no problems or voltage dips.
1519  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / DVD burning questions on: October 26, 2004, 12:14:12 PM
I had an Apex with the region free firmware and it worked much better after than it ever did right out of the box.  One problem may be the RW disc...I had problems in many commercial DVD players with DVDRW discs...either they don't play or don't play correctly.  Have you tried using a regular +R or -R disc and trying it?  Since it's already encoded you should just have to burn it again.  

BTW, more ram and a faster processor will speed up every part of authoring and encoding video and check for new software....there are many free alternatives that blow the doors off of Nero.
1520  Non-Gaming / Hardware / Software Hell / Onboard LAN question on: October 26, 2004, 12:04:17 PM
Have you tried using a different port on the linksys (if you have one of the broadband routers with the 4 port switches built in).  Have you tried a different ethernet cable to connect your computer to the linksys?  I've had problems where the plug on one end just wasn't making a good connection even though it looked like it was plugged in tight.  Have you checked on updated drivers for the NIC?  I know nvidia recently released new nforce unified drivers.  Also check the linksys firmware revision and update it if necessary.
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