Posted by: mrrx | February 6, 2007

Character (and Game) Slots

Well I never.    Only took a few days for an official word (From Sigil’s president no less) to comment on the 8-slot issue :

Vanguard Vault: We’ve recently learned that there are eight character slots per account. What was the thinking behind this decision? Can we expect an increase in the future?

Jeff Butler: The thinking was largely, out of the gate, the availability of names. In many of today’s large MMOs, players have trouble finding good names on mature servers– they’re taken up because with eight or ten slots per server, players have been known to go make characters with eight of their favorite names on each server. Its not like you can play a hundred characters. There is the option of buying additional character slots by through Station Players and other services. And we’ll continue to make additional character slots available through additional purchases or expansions.

That’s one thing. The other thing is sheer data size. A Vanguard character includes your house, everything in it, quite a bit of data. There are three-plus times the number of items that could be on a Vanguard player versus a World of Warcraft player because you have multiple sets of items. You have your adventuring gear, your crafting gear, your Diplomacy gear…what your horse is wearing, what you can put on your ship and what’s in your house. Its just a quantum factor of data beyond what a current MMO allows.

What a surprise.    A very human, believable answer to the conundrum.     Data elements have to be considered, but couldn’t be the only reason why they’re doing this.     Namespace is important and very believable.       The abuse factor (people making placeholder characters on every server, for example) is something I hadn’t thought of.

Butler hints at free additional slots with expansions too.   That, plus his comments on *absolutely not* wanting to be known as the Hard-Core MMO, and my play experience, leave me very satisfied.

Having played Vanguard for a while – so far, having multiple characters is really not that important to me.      I’ve become, in a sense, a main-player anyway instead of an altaholic.    I got out of the newbie area with enough bags and space to do some adventuring and harvesting without going insane.      I apparently picked a very playable class (Druid).      So I think I’m going to bend on this issue.

One thing I’ve never been good at is knowing when I’m licked.     Players like me (who want a slot for every character class in a game, in the basic price) are outnumbered enough by those willing to pay for the privelege, or who just don’t care.    Apparently, my side lost this war and I guess I just need to admit it.     So, time to pack up the rhetoric about slots and live with the way things are.

Half the classes though – that’s a pretty good ratio anyway.     And I still haven’t really gone through the six slots I had on Everquest2 anyway.

Yes, I could buy more slots with Station Access, but that’s not happening anytime soon.     Silverstep reminded me I can get another 4 slots if I bought them via Station Access; but in all honesty I’m going to resist the trend to my limits, even if I realize it’s time to shut up about it.

My EQ2 Subscription is up on Feb 16th, and I’ll be cancelling then and buying Vanguard.    Unless some amazing problem surfaces between now and then.      Really, I get the feeling I needed a change anyway and had not realized it.     I mean, one single game for an entire year ?    Anyone else out there manage that ?  {grins}

Expect a few changes on the blog in the coming week.     Things are getting unwieldy and I need to rework my sidebar to accomodate that.      And it just might be fun to post about games other than MMO’s as well……………

If anyone could post the various station players options I would very much appreciate it.    The info isn’t clickable for someone who hasn’t purchased Vanguard.     I assume this is the advanced character profiles, and some other doodads @ $1 each, with a combo package for $3.        Just like EQ2’s.    I could be wrong though, so can anyone help me out ?

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Responses

  1. ill check on the station players bit when ig et home for u..i got 3 free month of it with the ce and its nice…Tbh i pay for staion access as my son playes eq2 and swg when he can be bothered lol..i still havent beaten the last soldier woman spent 35 mins trying last nite and gave up…but as for playing a game for a yr u did welll since uo most ive managed is bout 2 months then i get bored and try another one..im hoping vg will last for longer but as its sa its not really a problem.Im having fun with vg and its seems to have that sense of potential and wonder that early uo had without the bloody player killers lol…

  2. “I apparently picked a very playable class (Druid).”

    I played a lot of diferent classes and races since Beta 3.

    IMHO, the very playable classes are: shaman, cleric, blood mage, disciple, druid, sorcerer, necromancer, psionicist, rogue, ranger, monk, bard, paladin, warrior, dread knight.

    Oh wait, that are all classes…

    Try any class, will be playable. Some classes have problems soloing at the first levels, but after level 10 they blossom. All classes are good at groups.

    The problem with VSoH is that if you try diferent classes you will not be sure what class to advance. I love shaman, but disciple is a very good class too. And ranger have that nice ranged attacks chains. And necromancer have that pet…

    Well, I am playing a cleric (nice armor and good for fight undeads) and I think better not try other chara. If I try disciple or druid or bard I can like it…

    (I tested all classes at least to level 4, all healer classes at least to level 11, shaman to level 16, I get disciple to level 12 and dread knight to level 13, the classes I get only to level 4 were ranger, bard and rogue, the other classes I get between level 5 and 10… so, I have at least a small vision(tm) from all classes)

    Geregor Bedstone
    cleric 12 / armorsmith 14

  3. Aww closing down your Eq2 account? *pouts* I’m going to keep mine open even if I rarely play, and just use the station access to play both EQ2/Vanguard – unless something drastic happens where I don’t want to log into one or the other of ’em.

  4. I’m certainly willing to buy into the data storage issue. Having to drop a huge table for every character ever created, even if most of the data in it is null, can create quite a bit of overhead.

    On the other hand, I cannot believe that somebody reserving names on all the servers can be considered a problem worth mentioning. It has to be somewhat rare, and if it isn’t, it is easily solved. Imagine, if you will, the error message, “You already have a character of that name.” Case closed.

    What they could do is make a compelling reason to stick with one character. EVE Online managed it by only allowing you to train skills with one character at a time.

    Playing a single game for more than a year? I am guilty of that with MUDs and MMOs. I played EQ2 almost exclusively until KoS came out. I’d play it more now if I had some friends who played more regularly.


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