First Impressions of New Magincia Housing

On my home shard, I feel enough time has passed to start talking about New Magincia. Some of these impressions cover other shards, and I’m planning on writing up an article about other shards after a few weeks have passed and things have settled down, but for now I just want to talk about my first impressions.

Quite a few houses are up for sale or being actively traded, however not as many as I thought. This was a surprise to me, given the low cost of entering the lottery.

Out of houses that have been placed, most fall into one of three categories:
* Museums
* Guild houses
* Private residences

Some of the guild houses and private residences are in what many considered to be prime vending locations, which I found very interesting. I’ve come across some very organized guild purchases and/or wins.

I’ve also observed, both from looking around, and from talking to residents, that many of the private owners have no intention of opening their homes up or making them vendor malls. Many are incredibly pleased to own New Magincia homes and prefer them over Luna/Malas homes, even with the smaller footprint, because of the setting and the proximity to real water instead of star fields or crystals, as well as being a “town” home, but not being surrounded by town walls and vendors.

We still don’t know how the vendor bazaar will work, or at least what impact it will have until the next booster pack is announced and then put into place. For more on it, you can read Notes on Recent Client Update with Publish 70 – Booster Pack?, but you will see spoilers for the next booster pack.

So what have I not seen?

Luna 2.

I think if we were going to see Luna 2, it would have already happened.

Congratulations to the UO devs and the players for proving me wrong on my speculation about New Magincia being Luna 2.

Notes on Recent Client Update with Publish 70, Booster Pack?

Update: Pictures of Gothic house tiles, Virtue Banners

Somebody asked me to take a look at some of the recent changes contained within the CLILOC files of the Classic Client, that we haven’t seen yet, or haven’t seen fully.

These are taken straight from the client files, with some clean-up work done by me to take into account formatting.

First off, references to Magincia have been changed to New Magincia.

There are also miscellaneous references to:
* Doormats or door mats
* Stone pavers
* Ritual Table

Virtue Tapestries are listed:
* Sacrifice Tapestry
* Spirituality Tapestry
* Honesty Tapestry
* Humility Tapestry
* Justice Tapestroy
* Compassion Tapestry
* Honor Tapestry
* Valor Tapestry

Possible New Housing Tiles:
* Gothic Wall
* Gothic Window
* Gothic Archway
* Gothic Half wall
* Gothic Quarter Wall
* Gothic Window
* Gothic Stairs
* Gothic Half block
* Gothic Block
* Gothic Rose Window

Old description of Magincia:
Magincia – Isle of Riches

Magincia is a fairly small island town known for the incredible wealth that it derives from the sea and from the practice of the magical arts. The city itself is beautiful to behold, with golden streets and majestic architecture. Honest tradesmen do not linger for long upon this isle, however, preferring to pass through the moongate upon its western edge in search of a more pleasing environment.

For those who seek to begin a career in Magincia, however, the city does offer guilds for fishermen and miners, and a modest collection of shops. Little in the way of danger ever finds its way here, but the moongate does offer abundant danger on its other side.

For the visitor, Magincia’s most impressive sites are its Parliament Building and the Temple to the Virtues – even if these are rarely practiced in the city.

Should an adventurer join the ranks of Magincia’s elite and purchase a ship, the docks to the south of the city offer access to the many other islands nearby.

Amenities: Baker, Bank, Counselors’ Guild, Healer, Inn, Jeweler, Magic Shop, Shipwright, Tailor, Tavern, Tinker

New Description, of New Magincia:
New Magincia – Razed and Reborn

New Magincia lies on the spot of what once was fairly small island town known for the incredible wealth that it derived from the sea and from the practice of the magical arts. The city itself was beautiful to behold, with golden streets and majestic architecture. Destroyed by daemons and later rebuilt, now New Magincia is famed for its lush gardens and the New Magincia Bazaar.

For those who seek to begin a career in Magincia, however, the city does offer guilds for fishermen and seafarers. Since its destruction and rebuilding, little in the way of danger ever finds its way here, but the moongate does offer abundant danger on its other side.

For the visitor, the town’s most impressive sites are its Public Gardens and the New Magincia Bazaar.

Should an adventurer join the ranks of Magincia’s elite and purchase a ship, the docks to the south of the city offer access to the many other islands nearby.

Amenities: Bank, Inn, Shipwright, Tavern

Read more

The Beginning of the End (EM/VirtueBane Events Coming Up!)

It’s going to be a busy weekend, with plenty of EM events taking place.

The Virtuebane story arc, In the Shadow of Virtue, is starting to wrap up, with some shards holding EM events tonight and others through this weekend.

For instance, Lake Superior’s EMs have posted this:
The time has come to put an end to all this chaos once and for all! The, hopefully, FINAL push against Virtuebane will occur in but two days! All able bodies are requested to aid in this dire time.

When and where?!?!
Friday, March 25!
7PM Central / 8PM Eastern!
Britain – Castle Trammel!

You probably should check your individual shard forums at Stratics or UO Forums

There is a very nice piece of fiction/back-story to the upcoming event(s) written by EM Drosselmeyer (EM from Chesapeake). The following is just an excerpt, for the full story, see the link at the bottom:

Virtuebane towered over those who had followed him devoutly, his Bane Chosen, as he stood in front of them where they had assembled. They looked to him anxiously and eagerly awaiting his latest commands, curious as to the reason they had all been summoned here. Virtuebane spoke to the gathered in a voice that commanded their full attention, and all other chatter was silenced in a moment.

“Our time is at hand, my chosen! The Britannian’s leader, Queen Dawn, has fallen! They are losing morale, and soon will lose everything! I have promised you all that your faith and your devotion would be rewarded. Are you ready to follow me in this final step towards our victory?”

A resounding chorus of cheers and assent rippled through the vast army of Bane Chosen, the dragon riders rearing their ferocious mounts back on two legs while the hound masters commanded their pets to let out a harmonious howl. The clamor of metal on metal rang through the air as warriors and recruits smacked their weapons along their shields. Virtuebane’s face adopted as wide a grin as his inhuman features would allow.

“You have all been chosen, and your loyalty will now be rewarded! You will serve me in a greater capacity than you could ever have imagined.”

With that, Virtuebane extended his hands and gestured towards his army. At first, it seemed that nothing was happening, but then a change began to take place. Rank after rank of the Bane Chosen found their bodies pulsating with power, their forms seeming to shimmer. Then in a moment of dazzling brilliance, what had been an army of dragon riders, recruits, and hound masters had transformed. Before Virtuebane now stood a vast swath of new troops, completely loyal to their master. Virtuebane gestured with a hand, and the horde of ancient hellhounds all rang out in one voice together. With this task complete, he stalked away to finish his preparations.

Full story: UO Herald

Publish 70 Patch Notes for Origin

The UO devs have been busy working on Publish 70 on the Test Center for the past week, and so some changes have been made as Publish 70 is pushed out to Origin.

I’m only going to list the changes over the Publish 70 notes (linked above):

Magincia Planting System (Changes = bold)

Players are able to plant seeds in grassy areas around Magincia by using a hoe. The players will have to maintain the upkeep of the seeds to keep them healthy. Only the owner of the seed can take care of the plant . The plant will be tagged with the owners name and the date he/she planted it. Players will be able to dig up the plants after they have matured and they will continue to keep the player’s name, the date planted and the date harvested. Players can use the blue crystals to magically advance the growth of a plant in Magincia. You will be able to find 2 Gardeners that will see the hoes needed to plant seeds in Magincia.

Bug Fixes

* The reward weight of the lobsters and crabs has been adjusted
* You can now have your parrots on your Brit Ship without losing it when you move
* You can now place one tile soul forges on your Brit Ship
* Moongate name was changed from Magincia to New Magincia.
* Cleansing Winds will not heal after removing Mortal Wound any longer.

Enhanced Client – 2D Paperdoll mode

* In the enhanced client you can switch to the classic paperdoll for viewing. The option is found under the legacy tab in the settings window.

Read: UO Herald

Have $12.95? You Too Can Have a Britannian Ship

Have you visited today? If so, you’ve seen the updates that have a lot of people talking. For $12.95, you can now purchase the Britannian Ship, provided you own the High Seas expansion booster pack.

As long as the money is being put back into UO, I don’t have a problem with it. I think it may even drive some people to purchase the High Seas booster pack since it is required to own and operate this ship and I know plenty of people who were interested in the Britannian ship, but who didn’t have the High Seas booster pack. People like me. I think the High Seas booster pack is great – as many have pointed out, there are plenty of areas of Sosaria that are not being utilized, and anything that helps change that is good.

Am I buying one? You bet. I don’t have the in-game gold required, nor do I have the time to accumulate the gold or points required. I definitely wasn’t going to pay $75 to a third party for the in-game gold – I don’t believe in buying gold. Now there are people plopping down the $13 and selling these in-game, which is driving the in-game price down and is probably really screwing with the gold market. I think that’s great – there are people who may not have the cash nor desire to pay the cash out-of-game to, however this way they can get it at a more reasonable price.

Now some are upset, but I vaguely recall somebody on the dev team mentioning that it might show up in the store. I think this was in response to a question about it’s cost – something like 150 million in gold/10 million points through the Britain Library. That really did put it out of reach to many UO players. I would be surprised if I had 15 million gold across all of my accounts, and I know I’m not alone amongst long-time players who are not rolling in gold.

I’m okay with this, because for all intents and purposes, this is a vanity purchase. If it were a game-changing purchase, I would have to argue against it. I don’t want the store becoming a store that deals in items that can really change the game for a player – I’ve seen this in so-called “Free-to-Play” games and it leaves one with a bad feeling about the game. The majority of items are vanity or decoration-related. There are some that are very useful, however they don’t quite cross the line into becoming necessary to play the game.

The Britannian Ship can be purchased one of two ways, and there are optional accessories:
* The ship by itself – $12.95 US.
* The Captain’s Bundle – $17.95 which includes the ship, a Captain’s Wheel, and the two dye sets (see below)
* Weathered Ship Colors – $5.95 Paint Dyes (3 charges, darker hues) (included with Captain’s Bundle and the Ship Dye Pack)
* Duo/Two-Tone Paint Dyes – $5.95 (3 charges, more “pristine”) (included with the Captain’s Bundle and the Ship Dye Pack)
* Ship Dye Pack – $9.95 (includes the weathered and dual-tone paint dye sets)

If you purchased everything separately, you’re talking about nearly $25 and without the Captain’s Wheel. Players might grumble about prices in the store, but I think the Captain’s Bundle is a pretty good deal. Obviously this will help sell High Seas booster packs as well, and you can’t ignore it when you put it in context.

Are people who contributed to the Britain Library angry? I’m sure they are, although, as I said, I vaguely recall hearing this would show up in the store. I don’t think anybody expected it to be so cheap. I have to admit, I’m really surprised. I can see the issues some have with it being too cheap, especially those who will take it and sell it in-game. It comes down to what EA wanted out of it and what they thought players would pay.

Buying High Seas plus the Captain’s Bundle at the same time, you are up to $33 or so.

I don’t think it was as much of a gold sink as some thought it was – the few people I know who went through the trouble of obtaining one, went and farmed monsters to buy it. They didn’t have 150 million gold sitting in bank boxes doing nothing. They farmed for the items/gold necessary to obtain one, and that works against it being a gold sink.

My only problem with it, is that you can’t place the Captain’s Wheel on the ship, only in a house. Not sure what to say about that.

But I can toss a small forge on it and go boat mining like nobody’s business – the hold maxes out at 28,000 for the weight. At least I hope you can boat mine from it. If not, there’s always the rowboat, right? That kind of defeats the purpose I suppose.

If you want to read more about the Britannian Ship and see a nice high-resolution image of it (the icon you see with the $$$ is a very small version of it), see the UO Guide