GnM is an online blog that chronicles my experiences through whatever it is that is catching my attention at the moment. Expect shifts between PC gaming news and commentary, to absolute nerding out about the new MG Exia Gundam kit. My brain is full of random esoteric crap, and I'll be spewing it out here. Thanks for hanging in there with me.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

New Patch! 1.21 is Live!

All right, here’s the next major content update, link to the full patch notes is here.
As usual, I’m going to single out certain notes and additions for analysis. Without further ado, let us commence:

The new Live Event, Beyond the Sands, does not actually begin this patch, but will hit the servers on the 20th.

Major highlights are the Keep Upgrade system, which I’ve covered in a previous post, improvements to the UI and combat responsiveness, and the new RvR Quartermaster token system. Other additions are the new Zone Control rewards for T4, Character Profiles, Guild Profiles, and an expanded version of the Gates of Ekrund scenario.

Keep Upgrades are now live, but Mythic decided not to implement the Dynamite and Caltrops for keep sieges, as the tester feedback was that they were too powerful. I’m disappointed about the caltrops, as I was looking forward to using them for more efficient postern defense. But I’m sure we will see them again eventually. I did notice that they are adding “oil immunity” potions, which can be purchased with Ordnance, the new RvR resource. I like the idea of being immune to oil, so that my mpds can actually attack the door for once, instead of hanging back. 

The new Ekrund sc will be 6-on-6, for ranks 19-24. I hope that they let higher ranks play this version of the sc eventually. 

  • Players will no longer be required to select an instance when entering a contested city. Instead, players will always be placed in the same instance as their group or warband. New instances will be created by the server as older instances become full.
  • In order to allow more players the opportunity to participate in city-related RvR, the contested city Scenarios (The Undercroft and the War Quarters) are now only accessible to players in the Rank range of 8-29. All players below Rank 28 will be bolstered to Rank 28 while in the Scenario.

This is pretty interesting. This fix addresses the issues of players involved in a City defense having to choose the correct numbered instance to actually play with their group or guildmates. Also, players were getting ported into empty or poorly populated instances, which made completing certain aspects of the siege extremely hard to complete. 

And it’s good to see that every player in the 8-29 range will now be able to actively contribute to City defense, instead of feeling useless. The more participants in City attacks, the better in my book.

In career notes, it looks like Archmages and Shaman get a large buff to many of their damage abilities.Their mechanic is also currently under review. No word yet on any major mechanic changes, but keep an eye out. In the meantime, soloing should be less painful for them with the new buffs. BW’s and Sorcs will no longer be able to stack their ground-targeted AoE’s, namely Rain of Fire and Pit of Shades. This stacking change also affect the Magus, with Tzeetch’s Firestorm. Abilities of this type will now all behave like the Engineer Napalm Grenade, only the highest rank one will apply in case of multiple ones in the same area.

For the White Lion and Squig Herder, their pet stats will increase by a percentage of the master’s stats. For WL’s, the War Lion gains different stats depending on what “Training” stance is active, while Squigs gain different stats based on the type of Squig summoned. Also, all pets gain a base increase to their hit points. Hopefully this will be the start of Mythic actively addressing pet issues such as pet damage and survivability that WL’s and SH’s have been concerned about for some time.

In Miscellaneous RvR changes, you can now queue for T4 scenarios regardless of whether or not the pairing you are currently in is locked. I ran into this last night, I was confused as to why it would not allow me to queue after Thunder Mountain locked. I’m glad they did this, as I don’t want to have to travel to another pairing just to queue up. This definitely was a pain while questing.

  • Keep doors will now always be attackable by the opposite realm after the Keep has changed hands. Additionally, defenders will now be able to see the health of the Keep door at all times.

Yes! I was getting tired of having to ask someone with a mod what the door’s health was at.

  • Players operating a Ram will now be immune to Knockback and receive reduced damage from Oil Siege Weapons.
  • Siege Rams will now do twice the damage as they previously did.
  • Keep doors will now have double the hit points they previously had.
  • We have significantly increased the hit points of Ram Siege Pads.

This is good to hear. Keeping guys up on the Ram is hard enough as it is. It sounds like they are trying to make the attack on the door last longer, which is good as far as renown gains go, I guess.
I’m gonna try and write another post on the RvR tokens and other stuff I passed over here. But in the meantime, get out there and get those tokens!
Oh yeah, 
  • Pre-game splash screens and opening cinematic can now be skipped by hitting the ESC key.

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