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Dying potential (Problems and solutions of lineage 2 classic)


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Truth of the matter is, the servers are dying slowly and the developers remain ignorant about it. If this continues, there won't be enough players to populate the L2 Classic servers for people to enjoy and keep on playing the game. We all know, that this was a one time deal to revitalize the game to its original glory and invite both the old and new players to enjoy what I consider to be the best mmorpg ever made (I have played numerous mmorpg in the past, so I am not saying this lightly). There won't be a second L2 Classic if this one fails, so the developers must do everything to their power to make it a success. Unfortunately however, they have chosen wrong methods to deal with the problems that the game is currently facing.

I hope by addressing the issues and providing a solution for them from which both the developers and the players can benefit from, this letter would guide NCSOFT (L2 team) to build L2 Classic towards a brighter future so it can live long and strong.

 

The game is facing several major problems, which both the players and the developers are very familiar with, things such as; L2 store, The amount of bots in the game, and Adena drop rate.

While the L2 store's so called "P2W" model is a controversy of its own to discuss, there is no denying that the uproar of adena drop rate in the game remains to be nothing but a cry of those who never experineced what it was like to play Lineage 2 back in the good old times where mere sight of someone wearing a brigandine armor was considered to be the blessing of Gods. However, the false cry brings its own problem to the game in form of "damage control" from the developers. We have seen games such as OverWatch fall victim to this unfortunate balancing cycle where the developers listen to the wrong crowd, thinking it is the wish of majority, despite in truth being nothing more than a cry of minority.

The old saying goes "Don't fix what isn't broken", and L2 is no exception to this phrase even today. People who think they should earn more adena from mobs and have easier access to buying Soulshots and potions in order to make better profit per hour for hunting, only seek to ease the game for themselves, for they don't enjoy the hardcore model that L2 Classic is all about. However, the increased Adena rate currently in the game is not the end of the world in my honest opinion - the game is not broken. I can live with it, but the problem is that people still are not satisfied with the change. This is and continues to be the curse of players who simply will not stop till the game is designed strictly to suit their individual desires.

Adena drop rate solution - Acknowledge and formost address the fact that the adena drop rate is not an issue in the game and lay it down to rest, so people can clearly see where you stand on this matter. Allow new players to truly understand what Lineage 2 Classic means and how the game used to be back in the day, for only you have the power to do it. For modern mmorpg players who come from different era and different games, it is no easy task for them to face such challenge like Lineage 2. To them it is only natural to think the game is unbalanced, for never has another mmorpg offered such an experience to them.

 

The L2 store scared many at the beginning, for they saw the horrors that are the Exp boost scrolls, soulshots and potions. These are items that ease the game and make players with lots of money have the advantage in leveling, thus reaching end game and better gear faster than others who either don't have the money or choose not to support such cheap business practices. My question to players who find these items unfair or breaking the game simply is: "What is it away from your gameplay experience that somone else will reach higher level and gear faster with money?" There is always people with more time on their hand who will surpass you with or without money and the game will continue to play normal either way.

Do I support the L2 store? No, of course not. Any form of microtransaction that is not purely cosmetic is and will always remain ugly business practice. However, here in Lineage 2, they are not really making a game breaking difference. The items simply ease the gameplay experience for an individual without having an affect on others. You may argue on this part of course, but this is not really where my issue with L2 store lies at.

What grinds my gear is that the developers decided to offer items beyond cosmetics when there simply was no need for such. Yes, they make more money for them and that's ultimately their motive for sure, but if they had just sat down and spent some time to come up with unique-looking cosmetic items, I bet a great number of us would have loved to support the game by bying these cosmetics. However, there's only couple cosmetics within the current store, gatekeeper hat and whatnot, and these simply do not cut it, at least for me. They don't justify my will to purchase, and I actually find it hilarious to see that almost no one is wearing any sort of L2 store exclusive hat on them when I walk around the game world in different cities. It is a sign that people simply don't care for these miserable items that carry very little inspiration in their design and idea. Also, 5€ for a pixel hat, now that's a ripoff in my opinion, but that's just me...

While I bet the L2 store makes plenty of money for the company to not have a reason to change it, it still continues to make a fuss within the community of L2 and its bad reputation still continues to drive away potential new players as well as the returning ones.

How to fix L2 store - Remove items such as EXP boost scrolls and soulshots. Keep items such as teleport scroll to specific towns, ect. Start to focus and design new cosmetics for players to wear and enjoy. Make a robust collection of unique-looking and exclusive clothing to wear for those willing to pay to stand out from the masses. Show the community that you care more about the game and its players rather than money, even if it is your real goal. It has been proven many times before that a good game with a good service makes more money than these money hungry microtransaction hook schemes which only minority of playerbase indulges in with their bottomless wallets.

Lineage 2 is an mmorpg, and as such it is far more important and enjoyable for players to look unique rather than have items that ease the gameplay. Why not both you say? Because the other side simply earns the game a bad reputation and it's not worth the money you make if there's no players willing to talk good about the game to attract more players/customers.

 

 

Bots have always been a curse of every mmorpg, there is nothing the developers can do to make them disappear. However, there are tools to make them less of an annoyance for real players, as well as less in numbers in general. The bot reporting system in Lineage 2 does not work, at least efficiently. It is almost like the developers did not even care.To report a player, one must first target that player. There are bots whispering to players all across the world map without allowing the player to target them, becuase they are not anywhere to be seen. All the player can do is block them in chat, but there's just too many of them, so it has no effect - with one blocked bot two more rises to spam. I have failed to report a single chat bot yet.

How about the bots that level across the hunting grounds, stealing your mobs? While those you can report, the sheer number of them compared to players who actually bother to report them rise beyond our control. While it is a battle we could easily win, it requires both the players to report bots as well as the developers to act on these reports. We are scattered on this matter, for how do we know if a bot we reported actually got banned? Why would we waste time on reporting them if we never see the fruit of our labor?

The bots do not only bring an issue of being annoying to many players, they actually take significant amount of space from the server population cap. While I can't run any real numbers, based on what I have seen, there could be well over a thousand, maybe two thousands of them. You have to remember that with dual boxing and allowing 3 clients to run at the same time for one person, it triples the threat. I have seen entire parties made of bots populating the hunting grounds.

With more players leaving every day, it only becomes more clear and visible to real players how the populated world is only half of what it seems. Soon enough we wake to realize how those who level next to us are nothing but an empty shell of a program running on autopilot, thus discouraging us to keep on playing.

How to fix the bot issue - Let players report a chat bot based on their name alone and not the physical avatar. Reward players for successfully reporting and banning a bot. Allow them to see that their report led to a bot being permanently removed from the game. When you do this, more players are encouraged to report bots, and thus botters will find it less motivating to even bother anymore. And even if they don't, our numbers are still greater than theirs and with time and motivation to report them, they will become insignificant to our gameplay experience.

 

 

Lastly, with Gludio server becoming less and less populated every day, it would be only natural to damage control by merging servers or at least allow players to trasnfer their characters between servers. Many players have already invested enough time to not want to leave the server in fear they have to start all over, but they don't want to play in a dead server either. There are people who quit completely because of this, and I can't blame them for doing so. No one wants to waste time on a sinking ship, and rebuilding what was lost is a great bother to many.

Fixing server population issue (Gludio) - For now, allow players to transfer their characters to different server, if only just couple times. Another solution is server merging. MMORPGS mostly reach their peak of playerbase at the beginning and from there they slowly scale down over the years. You have 2 healthy servers with heavy population and 1 relatively healthy server, but one is dying (Gludio). Unless by miracle you manage to spark a great wave of new players to populate it by some marketing campaign, we all know the server isn't coming back on its feets. The players are slowly forced to make the decision between jumping ship or quitting, and unfortunately I am one of them.

All you have to do is realize there is a population problem on Gludio server, and it isn't fixing itself. From there, I know you will find a solution for us who crave to play with more players.

 

 

I love this game, I really do, and never in my wildest dreams could I have imagined to see L2 making a come back in its original form after the game was suverly broken and transformed into something that shouldn't even have the name "Lineage 2" on it. I still despise NCSOFT for letting the old lineage 2 become what it is today (Not talking about L2 Classic).

Because of my great love to this game, I was inspired to make this post in hopes that you, the developers, would respond and take action. Even if you disagree with me on much that I have said here, at least acknowledge them and address them to the community, for we believe there is a great issue within the game, and if we don't hear from you, we can't see a future with this game. We need you to be more active in the forums, talk to us, share your opinion on different matters, be transparent, and most importantly, show that you care. 

 

I apologize for the long post, and I sincerely thank you if you made it this far without skipping. Please share your opinion on what was said here, and provide solution if possible. Remember to keep it clean and civil. If you disagree on something, don't forget to tell why.

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10 minutes ago, sunbreaker7 said:

I apologize for the long post, and I sincerely thank you if you made it this far without skipping. Please share your opinion on what was said here, and provide solution if possible. Remember to keep it clean and civil. If you disagree on something, don't forget to tell why.

I disagree on most of the things presented in this post, but I would agree that the server transfers - while all servers are pretty much in their infancy - do not have any potential to affect the economy in the long run and they could have been added - for now, it doesn't seem they were even considered. Yes, there are technical things to be taken care of (just like with LIVE transfers), but while the servers had been running for a week or two, any in-depth study would find that none of the players actually reached a stage where you would need to start deciding on something (e.g. max adena amounts to be allowed to be transferred).

1. Adena drop
This is not a problem, LIVE servers have had this for years and look at them - still going strong and ready to continue for the next 5 years (at least).

2. L2Store
As long as people actually buy things from the store, it is a win-win situation. It is a bit ironic that first you request higher adena drop and then request that people would be forced to kill more monsters to reach a specific level, effectively multiplicating adena acquisition and trying to kickstart the inflation spiral (for your own personal gain?).

3. Bots
As the adena sellers are businesses, they think in business terms. The cost of creating an account (or 100 accounts) and logging in is 0. Even if you ban a bot immediately after its first message (thanks to user reports or w/e), it still means that the potential gain for the adena seller business is > 0, so they will come back (cost of comeback is exactly 0, remember?)

Plenty of people have already suggested much better methods of dealing with the adena seller bots, since let's face it, they are the publicly visible bots. I don't want my reply to become very long, so I will not list them, but all those solutions focus on making the adena selling business less viable instead.

4. Transfers
Already commented above.

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13 minutes ago, Silence said:

2. L2Store
As long as people actually buy things from the store, it is a win-win situation. It is a bit ironic that first you request higher adena drop and then request that people would be forced to kill more monsters to reach a specific level, effectively multiplicating adena acquisition and trying to kickstart the inflation spiral (for your own personal gain?).

I have not requested higher adena drop rates, you must have misunderstood my text. Nowhere does it say that I support increasing higher adena drop. I simply say that there are many people who do try to change the adena drop rate, and this is a problem for the reasons I have mentioned in my main post. I want the game to be as authentic as it can be, changing the adena drop rate would go against what I believe in.

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problem is they setup so many paywalls, that all casual people are stuck at lvl 45. And made the adena so low trying to recreate whatever is live now where it takes you a year to bot to even put sa at mamon. But i think is pretty obvious that playing without shots is not enjoyable and all this casual ppl just gonna quit and they wont do anything about it. Juji is in his default mode, hiding cause he knows they are just over squeezing all the p2winners thinking this is a mobile game as if there is no alternative p r i va te servers that are 100 times more proffesional

Edited by Sutrius
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First of all we must clear out what p2w means.Imagine me and you.We both are playing same class,same hours,same days etc.Now i use the cash shop (in this case the l2 store) and you don't.I buy soulshots,xp boost,buff scrolls and you buy nothing.I have vip4 with all its bonuses and you have vip0 so 0 bonuses.Now what do we have here?Me using 2nd grade buffs and soulshot which for you will cost x amount of adena ,on which x remains on my inventory because i don't buy or craft ss. Now think that for me at least with my archer i spend roughly 2,5k ssD in two hours grind which is 22.500 adena.I that i buy them from store get to save these 22.5k every two hours which you don't.This will help me advance further with gear because i make more money than you.

Now lets see with the xp scrolls.I get with scrolls and vip4 roughly 75% more xp per mob than you,which means i will lvl faster than you,which means higher lvl content will be accesible to me much faster than you.Furthermore with 2nd scroll buff which i have and you don't, i have a higher kill ratio with less adena expences,which directs to more adena in my inventory.

Now you see where this goes?I got more adena,more lvls than you and possibly better gear than you with the same playtime, not because i am smarter and use better spots or anything,but because i got no consumable expenses and better support.Now some will say that its expensive to get all these things.It doesn't matter how much you pay.It matters that if i pay x z amount of real money,i get more things than you faster.The thing is that the way the game is designed, i will be able to deny you if i want access to certain aspect of the game, for example raid bosses,sieges etc, because i progressed faster than you did, which in return creates that gap every1 is talking about.

To move on, people made a parade here in forum at start for the drop rates.NC decided to increase the rates for most farming zones pre-40 and left the rest with the old rates.Now noone says that it should be easy to progress,but having higher lvl zones with stronger monsters be less profitable than 20-30lvl zones is wrong. There is no progress or healthy gameplay if i have to create a lower lvl character to sustain my main. I am not talking here for spoilers or crafters, im talking about alts mages that can farm on orc barracs more adena/hour than lvl50 mage.

To end this wall of text, if you have some gaming experience you would know that gludio server,with the timezone that was announced,would hardly have any players rerolling and there are multiple reasons behind it.First, Aden server has closer timezone to TI,so if some1 couldn't afford the queue on TI they would join Aden in the first place.Giran server players wouldn't start to play on a gmt-5 server because it is 6 hour diffence at best so noone would migrate from there.If gludio was gmt +1 then you would see more ppl going there.Secondly, gludio server opened almost 2 weeks after the original server launch.While many will say otherwise, 2 weeks is a long time of progress lost for hardcore players,considering that they would probably have to make their buffers/alt too from the beggining, most bought vip4 for these accounts etc,so the announce time was a bit late.

Under these circumstances you should have seen that gludio server will 100% sooner or later be merged to either Aden or TI.If some1 is smart and has vision for the future and likes this timezone,they would start on gludio,where they could farm their ass off unbothered, all the popular farming zones are free,raid bosses etc, and w8 for the inevitable merge with the above servers to rule them,because in TI at least there will be much competition which will slow down the progression for the big clans.

My 10k cents xD

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