Hello everyone. April has been an...interesting month. While not everything went as planned, we at least have things to talk about.
18.8.13 Update Over April, we launched the 18.8.13 patch onto Live. This update has introduced Arbiter Palmiero's missions and all the associated rewards. Arbiter Palmiero is a mission-giving individual who will be available in his office, within ICC HQ's 'Holodeck' tower, every other week. The mission he gives out will rotate after each appearance. He currently has a Dust Brigade mission, Kyr'Ozch mission, and a PvP-oriented mission. These missions all offer unique sets of rewards for completing them. Additionally, these missions offer 'ICC Commendations' which can be used to purchase some new rewards from the shop within the Arbiter's Hall. Finally, for characters seeking additional XP gains, or those who cannot participate with Palmiero's missions, his handy Drone offers a set of missions, based on your level.
In the future I hope to add some more sets of missions and rewards to the rotation, now that the foundation has been established. Additional Commendation rewards are also planned to be added through future updates.
The 18.8.14 update will be coming shortly, but its main purpose will be to fix issues introduced with 18.8.13. Content for the anniversary patch is already in the works.
Systems Changes It has been a little over a year since 18.7, Arete Landing, and the first stab at Systems Changes made it to Live. It has been enjoyable reviewing these changes again, looking at the changes made, and recalling where the inspiration for it all came from. That said, it's no secret that additional changes have been needed, and I plan to provide some. After addressing some of the most obvious issues, I will continue to move through the professions as I can, to try to keep all of this better tuned. More will be revealed as these updates progress and start to reach Testlive. Sorry for the delay on these fixes.
Veteran Points & Membership Rewards This update introduced a new set of rewards for time subscribed, while also adding items to the Veteran Shop. The functionality to determine the amount of time subscribed was moved from the Veteran Points system to support this new system, so the ability for Veteran Points to naturally increase has been lost. That said, periodically, I intend to have points manually applied, in attempt to keep this system running.
There have been characters/accounts who seem to have lost Veteran Points during this transition from one system to another. With the next update, we hope to restore some of the previous Veteran Point sharing functionality that was seen with paired accounts. If multiple accounts are grouped under the same Funcom account, the account with the most Veteran Points will share that amount with the others - This will hopefully resolve a number of the reported incidents. There were some instances where characters loaded with Veteran Points were transferred to accounts that had far fewer Veteran Points; it is still possible that characters transferred via the previous system came from a different Funcom account which was entitled for a different amount of Veteran Points. If things continue to see very out of sorts after the upcoming Veteran Points changes, please feel free to /petition and we will investigate your situation further.
When designing the Membership Rewards, the intent was to mostly work with existing items, and to introduce more social/convenience than actual power. While the bulk are social items, however, some were designed to be sought after. To address a couple specifically: the Uriel Blades and Gnuff's crystal. The Uriel Blades were designed to be 2h versions of having dual Polychromatic pillows, with a nicer visual, based off an existing set of items that we offered with a previous Subscription Offer (the Hiisi Blades). Gnuff's Crystal may be the 'newest' item, though it is based off an item that was introduced with Will To Fight, several years ago. I do not know why this item was lost from Gnuff, but it served as the inspiration, while also being re-added to Gnuff himself. It is not a perfect substitute, but it is now possible to hunt Gnuff in the Will To Fight to gather a consumable Shadowrift crystal; the next update will shorten Gnuff's spawn time, increase drop count, and reduce the cooldown of his dropped version of the crystal.
It was my attempt to be fair when assigning where these reward items would be placed, between the ICC Commendation reward items, Veteran Shop items, or Membership Rewards; the item shop itself only had 1 addition, which can be randomly earned when completing the 'Freelancers Inc' mission from Palmiero's drone. As a part of future updates, I will be further enhancing the Veteran and ICC shops accordingly, while adding Membership Rewards as the months move by. The purpose of these Membership Rewards was to genuinely reward people who remain subscribers, as opposed to being egregious "P2W" bait to convert non-subs. Our playerbase is already mostly subscribers, so this seemed like a method to reward those people, new and old. Subscribers will eventually get all the rewards, should they choose to pay month-to-month, buy via GRACE, or take advantage of a subscription offer. The Veteran Shop will continue to exist and grow, as an additional way for our Veterans to obtain items unique to that vendor.
Thank you! This month did not go entirely as planned, but I do hope everyone is enjoying the Palmiero's Quests and any new Veteran or Membership Rewards they were eligible to obtain. I am sorry to anyone who has fallen on the wrong side of Veteran Points being missing...we will try to remedy this, either by the planned matching of points across a Funcom account, or the gradual infusion of points over time. I am also sorry for the terrible lack of forewarning with the removal of Veteran Account creation, Account Merging, and Character transfers. We have restored Character Transfers, but only between accounts under the same Funcom account; this was mostly to prevent certain abuses of these systems, and because they weren't as relevant with the new systems that have been put in place...it was a good time to remove these, but the lack of warning was inexcusable. All of that said, the Anniversary update is coming along nicely. I very much look forward to celebrating Anarchy Online's 15th anniversary, and then continuing work to ensure we will be here for another 15 years. Thank you all and have a great May!