SEPTEMBER 6, 2002
The combination of the NPC experience changes and the post-50 "penalty level" rebalancing at once had a stronger effect than we anticipated.
We've altered a few of the changes to more accurately reflect our intent.
- The intent is to promote grouping, not to inflict a harsh nerf on our more casual players who frequently do not have the time to invest in finding and forming a group.
- However, we do not believe that going solo should be the single most optimal way to gain experience in EverQuest, which is what it had become prior to these changes.
That said, we'd like to take a moment and explain what happened.
On "Penalty Level" Rebalancing (Levels 51, 54, and 59):
- Many people saw much smaller experience gains at level 60. This was due to the "penalty level" rebalancing effect more than anything that was done to NPC experience values.
- In the previous patch, Level 60 became a full level, when it had been half a half level the day before.
- "Penalty levels" have once again been rebalanced such that level 60 is much closer to the half level that it was before, and experience was instead redistributed throughout the earlier levels.
- The penalty effect is still mostly mitigated, however the distribution should be more fair to those who are already level 60, yet do not have a full bar in that level.
On Grouping and Soloing:
- From the point of view of a level 60 character, a steady stream of level 45 NPCs represented the single best advancement in EverQuest, when the score is kept in "Experience Per Hour."
- With the advent of Luclin Alternate Abilities, nearly every sufficiently advanced level 60 could eventually and easily solo these "optimal" NPCs, and benefit more than they could in any type of grouping.
- We understand that forming a group, travelling to your destination, and other inconveniences have an effect on progression.
- With that in mind, we've undone the penalties for killing low blue NPCs, and instead added an additional group bonus to those who fight NPCs that are reasonably close to the group's level.
- The idea is that people should be willing to take risks, fighting the hardest NPCs that they possibly can, to reap the best rewards in EverQuest, as opposed to the blue NPCs that represent the lowest risk.
- For both groups and soloists, we strongly recommend trying out harder overall zones and the more difficult areas of zones that you might already be used to.
- We're confident that you're going to find that the additional risk pays off *extremely* well.
Resistances have been altered in PvP to bring the game back into more of a balance. Please do remember, however; In both PvP and PvE, resist gear above 100 will still remain important. We thank you for your feedback. Please do continue let us know how the next round feels on a larger scale.