What is the future of NC West?

Re: What is the future of NC West?

Postby Elmar » Mon Sep 25, 2017 6:15 pm

BergEr wrote:
Elmar wrote:I am not familiar with the situation in Blade & Soul, but I could imagine that the leadership there still sees several years of running that game ahead of them, so they take it a bit easier with the pay-to-win, trying to retain players instead of not caring whether they get alienated or not :)


Never tried Blade and soul but got this message yday
Advol 19:57
did a try on blade and soul with jasin
but its too much p2w
if i want to play it now

Advol 19:58
need to p2w

BergEr 19:58
yea like l2

Advol 19:58
weird both are ncsoft game
:D


So if someone that was on the top of L2 for long time think B&S got p2w its probably bad aswell.


Ah well, NCsoft remains NCsoft. A leopard can't change its spots :D
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Re: What is the future of NC West?

Postby Elmar » Mon Sep 25, 2017 6:16 pm

By the way, I quite like WarGoddessAthena's slave ship analogy. Here is a translation:

The Slave Ship


Middle Passage


Image


The term "Middle Passage" refers to that part of the slave trade route where black persons taken prisoner and enslaved in the inner parts of Africa were shipped across the Atlantic Ocean. Depending on the weather, such a journey could take between 50 days and 6 months, and it was a serious challenge to avoid having to unload corpses at the port of destination after the black slaves, who were in an already weakened condition from their capture and transport in Inner Africa, had been subject to a sea voyage of six months.

The starting point of all issues was the size of the slave ships. Those ships were small vessels of 100 ~ 300 tons, and in order to maximize their profit, the traders had to put as many slaves as possible into those small boats. Chained with shackles on wrists and ankles they had to lie down in rows, on shelves arranged one above the other, their bodies stacked just like in a modern chicken farm.

When people are transported like this, food and excretion become a problem. In order to reduce the additional cargo as much as possible and to be able to load as many as possible of the high-priced slaves, the food consisted of no more than a bowl of boiled maize or millet and a sip of water per day. An additional problem with the insufficent supply of drinking water was that the slaves, who were only accustomed to life on solid land, often suffered from seasickness, vomiting out a lot of water in the process. Because of this, many slaves became severely dehydrated.

Image


The biggest problem of all was the toilet problem. Agonizing over loading as many slaves as possible on their boats, the ship owners could not provide toilets for those slaves. The usual arrangement was that the slaves were excreting while lying down, with the ones on the bottom layers receiving the urine and excrement from the slaves above.

When a boat fostering such an environment arrived at its port of destination, the people at the harbor noticed the horrible stench and knew immediately that the arriving boat was a slave ship. Only half of the slaves survived such conditions, the rest having died of diseases contracted in the harsh environment, or having committed suicide by jumping into the sea, or having gone insane, losing their value as merchandise.

When I look at such a slave ship, I am reminded of the current Lineage 2. Of course, in the beginning this boat was not a slave ship. It was more like a big and splendid cruise ship. You could say that it was a cruise liner that took its passengers aboard and brought them to famous scenic spots all over the world. We were cherished guests there. Furthermore, the NCsoft captain and the sailors aka GMs had learned from the example of the successfully operating Lineage 1 department and were a quite capable crew. And since their abilities were high, we passengers thought nothing of paying a rather high price for the trip. However ...

The shipping line called NCsoft, following the prevailing winds at the time, set up a baseball team. They met a bad friend by the name of Nexon, learned from them what cash items were and started to tout them to us passengers.
Those who could see where the journey was heading disembarked. Those who could not bring themselves to jump ship started to organize groups with those of their fellow passengers who were in a similar situation as they themselves. Groups like fiery clans, bloody clans, normal clans, PvP clans or social clans were formed, where people could trust each other and pursue their own variety of enjoyment

In the meantime the boat has entered the doldrums where not even the slightest wind is blowing and there are also no more ocean currents. This could be considered as a metaphor for the current age of mobile games and the dwindling popularity of PC-based online games.

Image


In the past, when a misguided leadership had launched the Goddess of Destruction update, the boat had arrived in such windless waters before. At that time they ran their engine at its highest speed and managed to escape the crisis in the last minute through the Harmony update which healed many of the wounds the game had suffered. Alas, there is no such cure now.

Instead, the NCsoft shipping line seems to have transferred crew and equipment from HMS Lineage 2 and allocated them to their new mobile game Lineage M as well as to Lineage Eternal. And still they are greedily eyeing the wallets of the stupid players.

Image


The players are very angry about the cash items and clearly expressing their dissatisfaction, but the management does not care. Instead they are widening the gap between the common people and the VIP players by energetically pushing out new cash items every month. And the management does not intervene when VIP players dominate sieges, monopolize raids, monopolize dragon weapons and epic jewelry. Instead they are looking the other way and quietly acquiescing in such behaviour. The disparity between upper and lower class, the gap between rich and poor is clearly visible.

But maybe not. You could say that we have already become slaves being carried on the slave ship called Lineage 2. You could ask the clans that have walked away to return, settle their old differences and amalgamate into one single clan. But if you want to gather them like this and play, you must reach a similar level as your competition. You will have to scrape together money for cash items, even use ebay. And when players do not spend enough money in this way, NCsoft will put fetters on them they have already made ready.

There is no future in slave ships. In the current situation I am torn. Either we stage a rebellion against the ship owners, or we make a list with our demands - we must do one of the two.


Source:
http://lineage2.plaync.com/board/image/ ... eId=631332
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Re: What is the future of NC West?

Postby Lineage » Wed Sep 27, 2017 5:22 pm

I couldn't help to notice the similarities between how L2 evolved, especially since the announcement of GOD and after, and private servers. During 2008-2011 L2's player base started to shrink while the population from all the private servers combined was by estimation higher than official's.

What did private servers (especially high rate ones) offered in comparison to official?
i)high XP/SP rates ii)no monthly subscription iii)custom GM shop iv)donation system for acquiring items (custom or not) v)and many more features like easier overenchanting, 3,4,5 rows of buffslots, NPC buffs etc

Take a good look at official L2 today. Doesn't look exactly like what private servers offered back then? Don't you see players with red weapons, capped atk speed and custom items running up and down? Isn't there a "donation" system for those who are willing to pay to get extra or custom items? NPC buffers?

It seems like someone at NC came to the conclusion that the root of all evils were the private servers stealing customers from them and they just decided to offer exactly the same. And it succeed! We all remember what happened to the servers with the launch of GOD and the "free to play" model.

So how we ended up again at the same situation today? Greediness! They overdone it with the cash shop, so much that the players started to leave again and trying to find the good "old" L2 in private servers.

NC's response? An L2 "classic" server, which actually has nothing to do with the old L2, since it's just a custom L2 with altered XP/SP rates.
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Re: What is the future of NC West?

Postby Elmar » Thu Sep 28, 2017 5:11 pm

I don't think that NCsoft deliberately looked at private servers and then said "that's a good business model, let's do that too". I would say that was more a "parallel evolution":
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parallel_evolution

Once you start removing the monthly subscription - which was probably the single most important factor which drove people to private servers - you must generate your revenue out of some cash shop. Where else would the money come from?

And once you start with a cash shop, you must keep people buying. Selling Chevalier Outfits and Vitality Potions might bring in enough to keep the operations going, but it's certainly not enough to finance further development, be it of Lineage 2 itself or, like at NCWest, cross-financing the development of mobile games. The only way to get that kind of money is by selling ever more powerful items. Some years ago everbody was impressed by a blue-glowing weapon and +6 armors, now Save Tickets are sold and red weapons and at least golden-glowing +8 armors are de rigueur.

Keep in mind, the slaves chained to the top-tier bunks must always have something by which they can be that little bit better than the slaves below them. Sooner or later everybody who is anybody has an Abundance Talisman, so you need Ancient Kingdom Cloaks to top that. And when everybody who is willing to spend anything has a Legendary Cloak, it's time for the Sayha Talismans to be introduced. That's not so much greediness on the side of NCsoft, but what the players want themselves, at least the VIP players.

NCsoft doesn't even need to milk their slaves - they are milking themselves :D
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Re: What is the future of NC West?

Postby Lineage » Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:21 pm

What do you predict will come first:

- Male Ertheia
- R100 gear

A "new" race/class combo always renews players interest, translating to revenue for NC. Also the R99 has already gone to far and with the 3x SA and +8/+10 armor sets,and that only for monetization reasons.

If the level soft cap raises to 115 for example, maybe the need for new gear will become more necessary. Except if they decide for example to introduce boss armor sets, similar to boss weapons like Tauti/Kelbim.
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Re: What is the future of NC West?

Postby Illogical » Wed Oct 04, 2017 10:10 pm

I don't think they'll do another level restriction on R-grade. Either they come with Boss Gear that is No Grade/Regular R grade but with stats far superior than +15 R99 or they invent a whole new grade. A new grade means new materials; means revival of spoil, people rerolling, Maestros being leveled again to craft new materials. Runes/Vit Pots/Maint Pots etc. etc. money in the bank. Keep in mind, the Japaneses already got enhanced R99 sets which is still an option to cash more on existing R99. Same goes for Seven Sign SA's.

Personally in order of appearance:
- Fafurion
- Male Ertheia
- Destruction of lowbie zones by made up lore (e.g. Lindvior fighting Antharas over Giran Territories)
- 'Z-'grade gear.
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Re: What is the future of NC West?

Postby Elmar » Thu Oct 05, 2017 6:13 pm

In the absence of developer interviews we can only speculate. What we know is that the Male Ertheias already exist in the Korean client, while Fafurion is live since quite some time in the Chinese version of Lineage 2 Mobile, and Linege 2 Revolution has an SR-Grade.

On the splash screen you can see new weapons and armors each time you log in. But that's so far just graphics. While weapons can simply have more P.Atk./M.Atk. as the Grade goes up, for armors you need meaningful set bonuses, which are not that easy to come up with. In theory introducing a new Grade, crafted with new materials, would surely re-invigorate the game. But I simply don't see the development department having the necessary resources to design such a complex system with new monsters, new drop tables, new recipes and whatnot.

Likewise, there is the Scar of Lindvior in Lineage 1, where the Wind Dragon crashed into the Town of Aden, and Fafurion will sooner or later set half of Heine under water:
viewtopic.php?f=52&t=1547&start=70#p32290
But there too, I don't see the development department having the resources to catch up lore-wise with Lineage 1.

My personal bet would be that the Male Ertheias will be next :)
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Re: What is the future of NC West?

Postby Illogical » Fri Oct 06, 2017 9:11 am

Lineage II will not survive solely on another re-roll class. Especially if the Male Ertheia class won't be a PvE/PvP powerhouse. So many Sayha Seers rerollers left game or went back to their old class because only so few high-end end-game Seers exist. It's not a class to create and master within a month, Seers rely more on player skill than gear. I've had a high level, high geared Seer in clan recently and he admitted having no clue how to stay in perma hide like his opponents in Oly do. Evisc are nice, if you know how to loop Steel Mind efficiently, if you can't it's as weak as paper and does same damage as any other Tyrr.

With what we know, the Male Ertheia either gonna be a Rogue class, which is unneeded with GH, WR and Adv already dominating as they do. Giving it a gimmick like the FS won't help them either. Or it's gonna be a Summoner, and that class is just dead and buried 3 patches ago and loses all need in any PvE and PvP party after lv103.
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Re: What is the future of NC West?

Postby Lineage » Fri Oct 06, 2017 12:27 pm

Male Ertheia Gunner: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yqjSpxuewUU

As Elmar pointed out about the client files, and 4r4m showcases in that video, everything is ready, except you would think skills and weapon type.

Well if you think again, the weapon already exist. Have you give a good look to crossbows? They are almost like one-hand guns, if you remove the thing on top that shoots the arrows.

With a cheap re-skin of a female Ertheia to look like a boy and also a re-skin of crossbows to guns, the only thing that is missing is skills mechanics.

Seems that archers going to get some competion at their role as a class in a party. If such things still matter in today's L2.
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Re: What is the future of NC West?

Postby Elmar » Fri Oct 06, 2017 6:50 pm

Here is an interesting post by Neutron about his recent meeting with Nam Taek-rim and colleagues:
http://boards.lineage2.com/showthread.p ... age=24#477

The most important bit of information in there is that Nam Taek-rim has recently been promoted to Lead Developer for the whole game, not just the overseas version. He already held that position some years ago, after Namgung Gon was fired, and he has been with the Development Department since the early Chronicles. That's how he (2nd from right) looked in Chronicle 5:

Image
http://legacy.lineage2.com/background/dev_qa.html

So we have here a very experienced man, deeply familiar with every aspect of Lineage 2.


As for the suggestions Neutron made, "see if it was feasible" is of course a polite way of saying "probably not", but with Nam Taek-rim now being the man at the very top, there is a slight chance that some of this might actually be implemented. Not this year, not next year, but - if the game is still around by then - in two or three years :)
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