Tobold's Blog
Saturday, October 04, 2008
Emperor Karl Franz lives!

As I'm not playing on Karak Eight Peaks (EU), my reporting of Destruction taking Altdorf was necessarily second-hand and incomplete, based on the eyewitness report of an Order player, who was understandably exasperated. Now EA sent me an e-mail with a fuller picture. The most important news is that Altdorf wasn't fully captured on that server, it was only put into a contested state. The raiders did not even manage to complete the public quests that give access to the final battle against Emperor Karl Franz. Once the Order players woke up, they kicked the Destruction raiders out of Altdorf again. Nevertheless EA admits that there were bugs, and as the raid made these bugs obvious, they have been fixed now. Here is the complete clarification statement from EA:
I think your concern is completely valid and I don't fault your original blog post. I'm not here to tell you that you are wrong. Like I said, I wanted to give you more information about your concerns.

As you correctly stated, there was a bug, since fixed, that incorrectly set the postern doors in the fortress so that players from both Realms could access the inner Fortress. This allowed them to circumvent many of the fortress defenses with a smaller force than usually necessary and do it much quicker than would normally be possible.

On top of that issue, the time required for players to capture the two fortresses had been incorrectly set to 36 hours. It is now correctly set at 12 hours. This gave those same players three times the normal time allotted to achieve their goal of capturing both fortresses. This also means that without a fairly massive force, players may be able to take one fortress with a 3:00 AM raid, but not both. Instead they will have to play into the day and the chances of a successful player defense rise with every hour that passes.

On Karak Eight Peaks, Altdorf was put into a contested state and Destruction was able to initially win this stage of the fight. However, the same forces that so "easily" defeated the fortresses were unable to defeat the Bright Wizard College and Sigmar Temple Public Quests. These quests gate access to the King, so Destruction never fully captured Altdorf. Because they could not accomplish this goal, the City was held a brief time while the Destruction players attempted, several times, to successfully complete the City Public Quest, having given up on the other Public Quests. At this point, the forces of Order gladly re-entered the City and pushed out the remaining Destruction forces.

The end result of this was that while a small dedicated group was able to make use of two incorrect settings in our game to get to Altdorf, they were unable to accomplish anything meaningful once inside the City. Now that Fortresses have been corrected to work as designed, it would take a much larger force much longer to get to Altdorf.

You have to keep in mind that a City capture is a long multi-stage process that requires all of the following elements (I will use Aldorf as my example).

1) You must capture two fortresses in Tier IV within 12 hours of each other. To gain access to a fortress you must seize and hold the neutral Tier IV zone and your opponent's zone in two separate racial pairings. Once you lock down one racial pairing, you only have 60 minutes to capture its fortress. Should you fail, then that racial pairing reverts back to a neutral state and you must begin anew.

2) You must then fight in contested Altdorf and gain control much like you would in a zone. There are two Battle Objectives, a Public Quest and opposing players you must contend with in order to accomplish this.

3) Should you accomplish the first two tasks, the opposing realm is ejected from the city. At this point you have one hour to cement your hold on the city. You must complete the Temple of Sigmar and Bright Wizard College Public Quests within the next hour. If you manage this feat within one hour, you then lock down the city for 24 hours and unlock the King. If you fail, then you have one hour before the city is re-opened to opposing Realm players.

4) If you defeat the King, then you can unequivocally say that you captured Altdorf.

It's certainly possible that a massive well-organized force operating in the dead of night could seize and hold a Capital City over the course of a great many hours. Then again, if you organize a fairly large fighting force and utilize good strategy and timing to strike quickly and effectively, you should be rewarded for that behavior.

I would be happy to answer any follow-up questions you have. Thanks for giving me the opportunity to elaborate on the City capture.

That worries me. Tobold becomes King of MMOBlogs, even EA bends and sends him emails due to his posts.

Well thats a form of recognition. My congratulations.
Don't worry, that news isn't exclusive. Similar messages from EA turned up elsewhere. It is just a consequence of WAR not having official forums, so the community managers have to be all over the internet, even on my blog.
Don't worry, that news isn't exclusive.
What a shame. I rather liked the idea of Tobold as Blog Overlord.
No official Forums is evil. Saves them money but costs a fortune in missing coordinated feedback, consumer opinion and growth of the community.
Yeah, the lack of official forums is still a terrible idea. They did the same thing with DAoC and it sucked. Far too hard to keep up with the game and their stupid Camelot Herald didn't even link to any of the outside posts so you had to go searching (or just miss out).
It also saves them from having to moderate AND dealing with backlash from said moderation.

Personally, the kind of community that develops on official forums actually turns me away from more games than anything else. One consolidated location full of (often baseless) whining and community in-jokes. No thanks.
Well, if you don't want the player's comments, you could still post clarifications like this one on the WAR Herald. Just pushing the word out to some blogs and unofficial forums and hoping it spreads on its own doesn't work all that well. Of course I do appreciate the "form of recognition" Teut talks about, having been selected as one of the places that gets the news.
It's nice to see such a quick responce from EA on this. After reading that, city sieges deffinitly sound epic.

And I agree, no official forums is very much a bummer.
Official forums are a cesspool of ass.

They just need to make the herald more communicative. it just me or did that long list of time critical hoops you have to jump through to officially capture a city sound like an exercise in pointless frustration. Will people really go through all of that for the sake of "entertainment"? it just me or did that long list of time critical hoops you have to jump through to officially capture a city sound like an exercise in pointless frustration.

I can see both ways on this. On the one hand, having a city siege that lasts days and days that prevents players on the other side from accessing quests and city services without the attackers actually winning sounds frustrating.

On the other hand, having a bunch of failures due to not being fast enough to capture a city also sounds frustrating, and excitement could come from groups of players organizing or trying something to break a siege stalemate (It's hard to write exactly what I am describing.) I'll have to actually participate in the game and experience sieges to decided which would be worse.

The main thing that worries me is that city sieges will require so much organization and/or luck as to never actually happen.
It sounds exciting as hell to me. And it isn't a guild that is going to be doing it; its a whole Realm fighting together. Hence RvR.
No official forums is, well, have you seen the official Blizzard forums? I can't fault Mythic for not hosting official forums. However, the Blizzard forums are always good for a laugh, so I suppose that I do miss that.
Just as a reminder Blizzard aren't the first to use official forums and the ones from other MMO's, while not brilliant, were a far cry from the cesspit of activity that the WoW ones are

Using them as a standard is wrong, they are only that way because Blizzard chose to do nothing about them before it got out of hand
So when you down Tobold does he drop purples?

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