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July's Newsletter is Live!

    • 255 posts
    July 27, 2019 1:47 PM PDT

    I really enjoyed this newsletter. As a non programmer getting some insight into the process was fascinating to me. I also was impressed by the climbing animations. Boy does that have my mouth watering to see it in game. I have also been enjoying the NPC spotlights. They get my imagination flowing and even more curious to explore Terminus. Yes it makes it harder to wait but then again all the much more worth waiting for!

    • 273 posts
    July 27, 2019 6:18 PM PDT
    Content, challenge, adventure, teamwork, are why we plan these games. I don't need a gorgeous game I need a high powered computer to run. EQ 1 had the magic. Over s decade later project 1999 launched and the magic was back. The community and challenge was there. Deliver that and the game will be a huge success. The game won't need top tier graphics if the above factors are in place.
    • 134 posts
    July 28, 2019 2:28 PM PDT

    Vandraad said:

    What about mechanics. You know, those things that will make or break a game?  Substantive stuff.  Those things which truly matter?  I could not care less if there are knots on an olive tree or that you have X variations of fronds.  Where are the updates on mechanics?

    I'm getting flashbacks from Vanguard where we were given updates on visuals and how great the world looked...only to get into the game and find out the mechanics were pigshite.  Are we going down that road again?

    It was art and design that kept me playing Vanguard. Through the bugs, through the errors and despite the mess that it was I hung in there because the world was so massive, so brilliant and felt so real. I rolled a Warrior first in Vanguard and they were 95% broken. I got him to level 30 just by sheer determination. Then I started to explore the world, for weeks I ran around looking at stuff. I would shawshank my way up a mountain and get a view that was amazing. I ran around harvesting and enjoying the landscape. The grass that waved as the wind blew, the trees that swayed with it, the music in the background. It all made me feel like I was in a different world. An amazing world.

    So while some of you intend to just ignore things like that and race to the top don't make claims that stuff like detail doesn't matter. It is the detail in Vanguard that kept me playing that game until the day the doors closed. Sure it wasn't good enough for you from the get go with all the bugs because your interests were not aligned with that. But it doesn't mean that it doesn't matter. I play these games to escape into someone's imagination. 

    • 134 posts
    July 28, 2019 2:49 PM PDT

    Aethor said:

    That's how it was in Vanguard. I remember for Vanguard beta, I burned close to 2K $ (CAD) on graphic card etc upgrades just to bring the performance from unplayable to barely playable in groups... and raids weren't even in sight. And you know how that game ended. My PC after upgrades was, not the fastest in the world for that time, but probably within 5% of that.

    And it was still too slow. How did people with normal PCs for that time play?

     

    Everquest 1 was, for its time, a success, and remained a success for years.

    Did it have the absolute best graphics, special effects, rolling animations, hanging on ledges etc? Nope.

    Did we play it way more than any other game? Hell yes.

    There is a lesson in that, for those willing to learn.

     

     

    The thing with Vanguard was everyone thought they needed the fastest processor and most ram. The biggest upgrade and difference made in Vanguard was the hard drive. I upgraded to a velociraptor because SSD's weren't a thing when VG launched. But it made a huge difference. Then once I got SSD it made even more. That game was just heavy on the hard drive. Chunking was basically seemless after that, and raid settings weren't near as bad.

    As for comparing to Everquest it isn't really fair to this dev team. Everquest was so many peoples first love. It didn't have to compete with anyone, it had no expectations, it was what it was. Something new and exciting and I still go back and play p99 from time to time just to relive my old days. But I can't bring those expectations to a game like this because it isn't the same. And unfortunately no matter how hard a company tries it will never be what EQ was to us, EQ basically stole our MMO gaming virginity in a sense. 

    And from what I gather this game will be able to be ran on most decent gaming computers. I've asked the question before and they said that is one mistake they don't want to make again and that Pantheon will be playable on even the older gaming computers.

    • 680 posts
    July 28, 2019 2:57 PM PDT

    Moloka said:

    Vandraad said:

    What about mechanics. You know, those things that will make or break a game?  Substantive stuff.  Those things which truly matter?  I could not care less if there are knots on an olive tree or that you have X variations of fronds.  Where are the updates on mechanics?

    I'm getting flashbacks from Vanguard where we were given updates on visuals and how great the world looked...only to get into the game and find out the mechanics were pigshite.  Are we going down that road again?

    It was art and design that kept me playing Vanguard. Through the bugs, through the errors and despite the mess that it was I hung in there because the world was so massive, so brilliant and felt so real. I rolled a Warrior first in Vanguard and they were 95% broken. I got him to level 30 just by sheer determination. Then I started to explore the world, for weeks I ran around looking at stuff. I would shawshank my way up a mountain and get a view that was amazing. I ran around harvesting and enjoying the landscape. The grass that waved as the wind blew, the trees that swayed with it, the music in the background. It all made me feel like I was in a different world. An amazing world.

    So while some of you intend to just ignore things like that and race to the top don't make claims that stuff like detail doesn't matter. It is the detail in Vanguard that kept me playing that game until the day the doors closed. Sure it wasn't good enough for you from the get go with all the bugs because your interests were not aligned with that. But it doesn't mean that it doesn't matter. I play these games to escape into someone's imagination. 

    The graphics of any new MMO are going to be stellar because it's nearly impossible to make a new game (utilizing a halfway decent engine) that doesn't have better graphics than games from 5, 10, 15 and 20 years ago.  EQ2 looked absolutely amazeballs compared to EQ1 and even WoW, but its combat mechanics were weak and the gameplay was partially automated.  You may have played VG because of the graphics, but a lot Vangard's fans stayed because it had a lot of what made EQ great along with all of the classes in that game being amazing.  If the game had the exact same graphics as EQ, it still would've been a good game because the mechanics and classes were well designed (fun to play).

    I don't think people are arguing that details "don't matter" as much as they are complaining about not seeing updates about material that matters "more" than aesthetics.  There are some absolutely beautiful games out there that have garbage mechanics... EQ2 was an example of a game for its time that went overboard with graphics and the mechanics suffered (they traveled outside of the "uncanny valley" with their realistic graphics combined with awful mechanics failing to capitalize on player immersion).

    • 699 posts
    July 29, 2019 7:42 AM PDT

    Moloka said:

    Aethor said:

    That's how it was in Vanguard. I remember for Vanguard beta, I burned close to 2K $ (CAD) on graphic card etc upgrades just to bring the performance from unplayable to barely playable in groups... and raids weren't even in sight. And you know how that game ended. My PC after upgrades was, not the fastest in the world for that time, but probably within 5% of that.

    And it was still too slow. How did people with normal PCs for that time play?

    Everquest 1 was, for its time, a success, and remained a success for years.

    Did it have the absolute best graphics, special effects, rolling animations, hanging on ledges etc? Nope.

    Did we play it way more than any other game? Hell yes.

    There is a lesson in that, for those willing to learn.

     

    The thing with Vanguard was everyone thought they needed the fastest processor and most ram. The biggest upgrade and difference made in Vanguard was the hard drive. I upgraded to a velociraptor because SSD's weren't a thing when VG launched. But it made a huge difference. Then once I got SSD it made even more. That game was just heavy on the hard drive. Chunking was basically seemless after that, and raid settings weren't near as bad.

    As for comparing to Everquest it isn't really fair to this dev team. Everquest was so many peoples first love. It didn't have to compete with anyone, it had no expectations, it was what it was. Something new and exciting and I still go back and play p99 from time to time just to relive my old days. But I can't bring those expectations to a game like this because it isn't the same. And unfortunately no matter how hard a company tries it will never be what EQ was to us, EQ basically stole our MMO gaming virginity in a sense. 

    And from what I gather this game will be able to be ran on most decent gaming computers. I've asked the question before and they said that is one mistake they don't want to make again and that Pantheon will be playable on even the older gaming computers.

    This is fairly spot on.

    SSD was the big gamechanger for gamers.

    I remember playing EQ2 at release and essentially found the cities to be almost impossible to move through due to how much graphic content and data they pushed at your PC to load.

    On a whim I got a Gen 1 SSD and was amazed at the impact it had on performance, maybe partially my system was caching so much to the drive due to lack of RAM.

    Later in Vanguard I recall those messages that you would get if you were the first person to find an item, or kill a monster. Those would lock you up bad since the code was taking a screenshot and writing the info to the database of discoveries. Sometimes people would crash from those discoveries.

    Once my guild(bots) was raiding APW, working our way to Kotasoth. SoE had recently reset their DB for some reason, which also reset all the discoveries. When our raid of 24 killed Zagius every single player except me CTD from the message. I was shocked. And as players logged back in I took a survey and found out I was the only one using an SSD. They were quite new at the time and $$$.

    So SSDs made a big difference in those days and in games like EQ2, Vanguard, etc.

     

    The 2nd big gamechanger in gaming for me was 4K (with an appropriate video card). SSDs and 4K. Two of the top tech changes that had the biggest impact on my gaming experience.

    • 1692 posts
    July 30, 2019 9:51 AM PDT

    Moloka said:

    It was art and design that kept me playing Vanguard. Through the bugs, through the errors and despite the mess that it was I hung in there because the world was so massive, so brilliant and felt so real. I rolled a Warrior first in Vanguard and they were 95% broken. I got him to level 30 just by sheer determination. Then I started to explore the world, for weeks I ran around looking at stuff. I would shawshank my way up a mountain and get a view that was amazing. I ran around harvesting and enjoying the landscape. The grass that waved as the wind blew, the trees that swayed with it, the music in the background. It all made me feel like I was in a different world. An amazing world.

    So by your logic would would pay money for a great looking car that broke down every day, being unreliable for even short trips?  Honestly?

    I get it.  Visuals are what first attracts people to nearly everything, cars, houses, people and even video games.  But visuals have a quite short lifespan becuase, as Darch pointed out above, graphics are continually being improved.  What was new and shiny yesterday is boring and old tomorrow.  But visuals are a depreciating asset, quickly losing their value. Good gameplay, by contrast, has much longer lifespan, years long than visuals.

    The first time you see something new, you do stop and stare.  The 2nd time?  The 3rd time?  The Nth time?  Before you know it that thing you stared at in wonder initially has now become nothing more than background clutter, something you run past without even noticing.

    EQ1 retains enough popularity not from its visuals.  Neither does WoW or even EVE Online (that UI is the pinnacle of fugly). These games are popular because the gameplay is challenging, engaging, interesting, entertaining, etc.

    I know that a designer working on art assets, animations, etc in no way hinders another programmer working on core mechanics or gamplay as they are two different teams.  But there is a large portion of the playerbase whose interests and concerns are not being adequately addressed by these newsletters.  They need to speak to us as well if VR has any hope in attracting (and keeping) players who are more concerned about mechanics and gameplay than pretty knots on a tree or that one branch on a tree is visually different from another branch on the same tree.

    • 99 posts
    July 30, 2019 11:52 AM PDT

    You can have both visually compelling graphics as well as great mechanics. Most likely these are two separate teams working on different goals and to suggest you can't have both and each are fighting for equal amount of attention by VR is a bit silly.

    With that said, I think the spell effects are great! However, one thing I'd like for VR and their designers to keep in mind is to think about how the spell actually manifests itself into creation. Everquest had D&D qualities in regard to the spell effects where you'd see animations literally pulling the ether from the atmosphere around them. Clarity was an animation that projected into you, rather than out. Levitation was a ring of green, dense sparkles that dripped. 

    What I'm seeing from VR is a lot of erratic lighting spears across an array of abilities. I'm hoping to see more defined animations that reflect their spell counterpart. Think differently on how a fireball can manifest. It doesn't have to have a standard explosion of erratic light that blasts from the wizard's hands with a trail of fire. Sure that's cool, but we've seeeeeeen it. What if that same fireball created a ring of fire around the wizard's fingers and sparks could be dripping to the ground...it spirals out of his hands while the circle of fire follows the ball of flame spinning with light. Or something. The spirals of thin light from the Cleric's offensive ability is a great example of what I'm talking about. More of that. Continue to be different! 


    This post was edited by Avaen at July 30, 2019 11:55 AM PDT
    • 1 posts
    July 30, 2019 2:20 PM PDT

    I felt that way too when I saw the spell effects. When I heal I "see" it radiating out from me and 'touching' the other; when I'm hurt "ugh" it causes me pain you can see my reaction and hear my cry. Perhaps earth damage could be seen as the toon stretches out their hand raising earth clouds or rubble torrents that he sends forth to emcompass his enemy... or somthing powerful feeling like that. He commands... "GO FORTH".  But yeah for what I see I would like for it to have meaning as to the action going on... it would add a lot more depth I believe.

     


    This post was edited by Donna at July 30, 2019 2:22 PM PDT
    • 111 posts
    July 30, 2019 10:31 PM PDT

    Have patience lads.. Pantheon is my last hope for the mmorpg genre. I don't care if it takes them another decade. It must be done right. We must succeed!

    • 103 posts
    August 2, 2019 2:22 PM PDT

    They posted a newsletter about a year ago when they were working on grass. Now they are working on trees...a year later.

    Not exactly the type of progress that inspires hope for those of us who dontated hundreds of dollars to this game already. 

    Back to EQ1 TLP servers I go for another few months I guess. Hoefully we will get an update on rocks or clouds before Christmas.


    This post was edited by nscheffel at August 2, 2019 2:23 PM PDT
    • 467 posts
    August 21, 2019 10:01 AM PDT

    Where's my August newsletter @Roenick? Shame! lol

    J/K. You know we love ya Roenick. =p


    This post was edited by Kratuk at August 21, 2019 10:13 AM PDT
    • 12 posts
    August 21, 2019 6:38 PM PDT
    When does the Aug newsletter hit?
    • 39 posts
    August 22, 2019 1:55 AM PDT

    The news in Aug are: No news :P

    • 1002 posts
    • 1 posts
    August 22, 2019 10:05 AM PDT

    I have tried to find kind of idea of just when we can expect to see an Alpha release so we can actually play this game.

    It sounds like a very interesting game but it pretty useless if we cannot play it.

    Is there even a wild guess when Alpha and Beta Testing will begin and any idea of a release date?

    • 350 posts
    August 22, 2019 12:18 PM PDT

    Shakaty said:

    I have tried to find kind of idea of just when we can expect to see an Alpha release so we can actually play this game.

    It sounds like a very interesting game but it pretty useless if we cannot play it.

    Is there even a wild guess when Alpha and Beta Testing will begin and any idea of a release date?

     

    Periodic Alpha sessions will begin towards the end of next year (2020).  Guarantee it.  Beta several years after that.