UO - Anti-new player?

I've been spending some time lately thinking about how to best bring new players to UO, and the biggest problem (read: hurdle of insurmountable heights) that is brought up is the fact that UO is anti-new player.  I'll gloss over the inability to find guides that are current, that's the community's fault for not providing them.  What makes this an issue are the following items:

1) Legacy pets.  Based on uo-cah, the highest intensity a training pet will get is somewhere around 8750, assuming it spawned at max intensity in everything.  Pipe dream alone right there, but statistically, it can happen.  
Let's look at what legacy pets can do. 
Legacy Nightmare, Trained intensity rating: 9192 - 9541, 4-800 more points.  For comparison, that's around 150-260 health.  Or 800-1600 more mana.
Legacy White Wyrm:  Trained intensity rating: 9185 - 9592.  Roughly the same 4-800 points.
Let's also look at pets that can no longer be tamed:
Bane Dragon: Trained intensity range: 8585 - 9355
Dread Warhorse: Trained Intensity Range: 8585 - 9355

Basically, no new player can EVER have a pet tamed by themselves that comes even close to this. This is NOT RIGHT.

2) Items no longer obtainable.  See this thread.  Not much more to say there. 

3) Vet rewards:  Does anyone really think a new player who starts his account will see a 20 year vet reward?  At this point, we're pandering to the people who can't move on.  My account is 9 years of active service.  There's no doubt in my mind that I'll ever be able to use even the 15 year rewards.  The new rewards on test center as being less than 10 years are a step, but perhaps its time to consider removing vet rewards and making them obtainable through other means, or allowing players to purchase time.

I know there's several other items that we've ignored.  Perhaps its time we started focusing on making this game that we all (supposedly) love to be more open to new players, rather than creating limited time events, items, and pets that were only available to those who played during that time.  I'm looking at you Halloween events, Christmas events, and 20th anniversary story line.

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Comments

  • PinkertonPinkerton Posts: 105
    I am going to second the opinions expressed here.

    UO is terribly unfriendly to new players.  This can be for various reasons, and those listed above are a good start.

    Vet rewards are a problem.  I understand their purpose.

    However, at what point does a system full of fun, interesting, exciting items actually deter new players?  The moment they realize they will never earn them.  No matter what they do.  This is a completion barrier.  It is something MMO players (especially those willing to play a 20 year old game that brings less of the flash and dynamic tech to the table) do not deal with very well.

    Now, I suspect the general idea at EA is "Milk it as long as you can and then shut the doors when its not making any money"  I get that.  The challenge of refreshing this game seems almost insurmountable.  Does that mean Broadsword should give up trying?  I don't know.  I honestly cannot say what is in their best interest.  because in the end, I do not fault BS for making decisions that keep them in jobs.

    However, it seems like turning new players into avid players could be a key to maintaining the official existence of the game.  And as of now, there is way too much standing between a new player and the decision to keep coming back.
  • IkeeluIkeelu Posts: 134
    Brother, as a player on and off since ‘98 I hear you. I could have 20 year rewards now if I kept an active account. I could have legacy pets if I ever imagined they wouldnt treat pets like other items and revert them upon updating. Items? OMG what a joke. I never realized the mempo of fortune would never come back. But just like in 99 (or whenever) i spent points on hair dye... never knowing phoenix armor would be worth so much someday. I play uo when I get bored of other grinds. I get a few hundred mil and realize this game is still a lost cause. Until they make a pre-aos shard I will be a 3 month a year player. God help the complete noobs, any any returning players coming back from the early ‘00s 
    esdxWhere is the bank? 
  • MervynMervyn Posts: 1,303
    edited February 8
    1) Why does some people having prepatch pets affect a new players ability?
    I have been playing for 20+ years and don't use a pre-patch pet.

    2) some people have a couple of 12 mod items, so what? you can cap everything out with a couple of normal legendaries.

    3)Vet rewards I thought can now be used by any age account. Most of them are vanity also.

    I am campaigning very hard for greater transparency in this game for new players and the latest introduction of the "last parry chance" is a step in the right direction. Things are very slowly moving in the right direction.
    I tell you the truth, tis better to do 10 damage on the right target than 100 damage on the wrong target.

    Breaking in the young since 2002
  • PinkertonPinkerton Posts: 105
    1.  Relative achievement is a thing.  It is especially apparent in a video gaming community.  I am not saying it matters more than a few percentage points of damage in game.  But the sociological effect it can have on players is one that WILL create negative play experiences.  Whether you think it is an issue or not is moot.  It is a proven principle.  If a player starts the game at a deficit they can never overcome, they are less likely to enjoy and continue the experience.

    2. See above


    3.  Vet rewards purchasable by gold is a thing.  It goes part of the way to solving the problem, but not all the way.  When we have an economy that has a massive learning curve in and of itself.  not to mention the cost to time ratio for earning gold for new players.  I can farm, in pure gold, 500k in an hour with a geared out Samp. (maybe thats not as much as some of you can)  But that Samp represents thousands of hours of play.
  • XareXare Posts: 101
    The major problem with that mentality Ivenor is that its not about "putting the effort into obtaining something."  There's absolutely no way, going forward, new players can have some of the same perks that vets have.  None.  Zilch.  Its about "Playing at the right time", which is, to be honest, off-putting.
  • DrakelordDrakelord Posts: 476
    ((Below are mine answers to remarks 1 and 3.   My period of play is 2000-2007, 2015-2019)).

    Mervyn said:
    1) Why does some people having prepatch pets affect a new players ability?
    I have been playing for 20+ years and don't use a pre-patch pet.

    (a) Mine main tamer uses a pre-patch Mare, also has a Dread, but the nightmare is a far better fighter since it was a two slots when I trained it up.  I used that Mare for most of my major battles on Sonoma.  I mainly kept the Dread because of its Trick.  Todays Mares are three slots, same as the Dread was.  Yet the Dread was a far better pet back then.  I really wished they had NOT messed with legacy pets.  I also wish they give a token at the store to reset a pet after training as I was never really happy with training up the Dread those two more slots.

    3)Vet rewards I thought can now be used by any age account. Most of them are vanity also.

    (b) There is a vet reward that cannot be used by any account, only if that account is old enough to get them as the vet reward is account bound.  Shard Transfer shields.

    I am campaigning very hard for greater transparency in this game for new players and the latest introduction of the "last parry chance" is a step in the right direction. Things are very slowly moving in the right direction.

    (c)  Keep up the good work there.

  • IvenorIvenor Posts: 457
    edited February 8
    Xare said:
    The major problem with that mentality Ivenor is that its not about "putting the effort into obtaining something."  There's absolutely no way, going forward, new players can have some of the same perks that vets have.  None.  Zilch.  Its about "Playing at the right time", which is, to be honest, off-putting.
    I partially disagree, WATDR. Beside SSs all the other game items, pets, etc. are for sale for GPs ingame. The only point is to find a way to gain enough GPs.

    That said, what UO SURELY should have is an ingame organized system of new players support, on this I agree totally.

  • IvenorIvenor Posts: 457
    Drakelord said:
    ((Below are mine answers to remarks 1 and 3.   My period of play is 2000-2007, 2015-2019)).

    Mervyn said:
    1) Why does some people having prepatch pets affect a new players ability?
    I have been playing for 20+ years and don't use a pre-patch pet.

    (a) Mine main tamer uses a pre-patch Mare, also has a Dread, but the nightmare is a far better fighter since it was a two slots when I trained it up.  I used that Mare for most of my major battles on Sonoma.  I mainly kept the Dread because of its Trick.  Todays Mares are three slots, same as the Dread was.  Yet the Dread was a far better pet back then.  I really wished they had NOT messed with legacy pets.  I also wish they give a token at the store to reset a pet after training as I was never really happy with training up the Dread those two more slots.

    3)Vet rewards I thought can now be used by any age account. Most of them are vanity also.

    (b) There is a vet reward that cannot be used by any account, only if that account is old enough to get them as the vet reward is account bound.  Shard Transfer shields.

    I am campaigning very hard for greater transparency in this game for new players and the latest introduction of the "last parry chance" is a step in the right direction. Things are very slowly moving in the right direction.

    (c)  Keep up the good work there.

    Exactly: ONLY ONE.
  • XareXare Posts: 101
    Ivenor said:
    I partially disagree, WATDR. Beside SSs all the other game items, pets, etc. are for sale for GPs in-game. The only point is to find a way to gain enough GPs.

    What UO SURELY should have is an in-game organized system of new player support, on this I agree totally.

    Look at it from a new player perspective.  They train up a character.  Kill something hard, that drops like 3-4k gold.  How many of those mobs does he have to kill to buy some of these unobtainable items?  12,500+ for a nightmare, based on a quick Stratics search for price ranges.  How long will that take?  Let's assume Pinkerington's numbers are a good guess, 500k an hour.  So for a 50m PP Mare, he's farming for 100 hours.  How is that better than a player being able to just go tame one?
  • IvenorIvenor Posts: 457
    Xare said:
    Ivenor said:
    I partially disagree, WATDR. Beside SSs all the other game items, pets, etc. are for sale for GPs in-game. The only point is to find a way to gain enough GPs.

    What UO SURELY should have is an in-game organized system of new player support, on this I agree totally.

    Look at it from a new player perspective.  They train up a character.  Kill something hard, that drops like 3-4k gold.  How many of those mobs does he have to kill to buy some of these unobtainable items?  12,500+ for a nightmare, based on a quick Stratics search for price ranges.  How long will that take?  Let's assume Pinkerington's numbers are a good guess, 500k an hour.  So for a 50m PP Mare, he's farming for 100 hours.  How is that better than a player being able to just go tame one?
    How much did WE farm back then? I remember, back in 1998, DREAMING to be able to afford a DARN TENT HOUSE!!!  :D ;)
  • XareXare Posts: 101
    And of course MMOs and UO hasn't changed in the slightest in the past 21 years. 
  • PinkertonPinkerton Posts: 105
    Xare said:
    Ivenor said:
    I partially disagree, WATDR. Beside SSs all the other game items, pets, etc. are for sale for GPs in-game. The only point is to find a way to gain enough GPs.

    What UO SURELY should have is an in-game organized system of new player support, on this I agree totally.

    Look at it from a new player perspective.  They train up a character.  Kill something hard, that drops like 3-4k gold.  How many of those mobs does he have to kill to buy some of these unobtainable items?  12,500+ for a nightmare, based on a quick Stratics search for price ranges.  How long will that take?  Let's assume Pinkerington's numbers are a good guess, 500k an hour.  So for a 50m PP Mare, he's farming for 100 hours.  How is that better than a player being able to just go tame one?
    Not to mention the hundred or so hours it takes to make a char good enough to control the mare.  The time and effort to get the power scrolls etc. 

    I am not arguing for anything to be easier.  Just equalizing opportunity. For the best experience. 
  • XareXare Posts: 101
    Ikeelu said:
    come back and find out that the devs nerfed that super rare limited item by releasing an easily farmed new item with better stats.
    Both sides of this sentence are just plain wrong in terms of enjoy-ability for players.  New players shouldn't be excluded from things just because they did not join the train when everyone else did.  Hell, at this point, its possible some of them weren't even alive to join the train. 

    This isn't about better stats on new items, its about the limited time only items, pets, and abilities that newer players are just blocked from, either through the runaway inflation or simply inability to obtain anymore, at all.
  • PinkertonPinkerton Posts: 105
    Xare said:
    Ikeelu said:
    come back and find out that the devs nerfed that super rare limited item by releasing an easily farmed new item with better stats.
    Both sides of this sentence are just plain wrong in terms of enjoy-ability for players.  New players shouldn't be excluded from things just because they did not join the train when everyone else did.  Hell, at this point, its possible some of them weren't even alive to join the train. 

    This isn't about better stats on new items, its about the limited time only items, pets, and abilities that newer players are just blocked from, either through the runaway inflation or simply inability to obtain anymore, at all.
       A major issue though is the the complete lack of evolving content.

    If you think about WoW or games like it, a player who joins at point Z is only ever behind a year, max 2 years on the veterans and with the next release the clock starts over. 

    A major barrier to new players in this game is a complete lack of a middle game.

    There is no arc that goes from killing skeletons in Brit Graveyard to farming Roof.  That typically looks like this
    1. Start playing UO
    2. Kill skeletons
    3. Get given a bunch of stuff and gold.
    4.  Start doing roof.

    Or this
    1. Start playing
    2. Kill skeletons
    3. Get lost and bored and lonely as hell
    4. Quit
  • IkeeluIkeelu Posts: 134
    You miss the irony I guess. The game is broken and it can never be fixed. 

    Just know that no legacy pet will ever compete with a chiv/ai cu.

    There are no legacy items needed for an endgame samp

    The only unfair advantage in game is shard shields. 

    esdxWhere is the bank? 
  • TimTim Posts: 248
    To keep my blood presser down I'll try to limit myself to just the topic of Vet rewards. 

    Veteran Rewards were and are suppose to be a thank you from the producers for long term players sticking around. Would you say someone who shows up for the last 100 yards of a marathon should should get the prize for finishing it?

    BUT there should be some changes.
    • Items that have real game use like sewing machines should be moved to first year or moved out of the Veteran Reward system.
    • Return the account age limit on the use of everything else. Do you have any pride in riding a Serpentine Dragon when anyone with a credit card can get one too? I sure won't when I get "old" enough to get one. The same goes for the house decorations.
    UO is a LONG term game and will alway take time to master. With the skill and stat. point limits a new character will be a "good" as a 20 year vet within a month. The only advantage the older player will have is things which is the whole point of the game. 

    At that point he/she can decide whether to accumulate the stuff them selves or just buy them.

    "A Synonym is a word you use when you can't spell the other one."
                                                                                 Baltasar Gracián
  • poppspopps Posts: 140
    Xare said:
    I've been spending some time lately thinking about how to best bring new players to UO, and the biggest problem (read: hurdle of insurmountable heights) that is brought up is the fact that UO is anti-new player.  I'll gloss over the inability to find guides that are current, that's the community's fault for not providing them.  What makes this an issue are the following items:

    1) Legacy pets.  Based on uo-cah, the highest intensity a training pet will get is somewhere around 8750, assuming it spawned at max intensity in everything.  Pipe dream alone right there, but statistically, it can happen.  
    Let's look at what legacy pets can do. 
    Legacy Nightmare, Trained intensity rating: 9192 - 9541, 4-800 more points.  For comparison, that's around 150-260 health.  Or 800-1600 more mana.
    Legacy White Wyrm:  Trained intensity rating: 9185 - 9592.  Roughly the same 4-800 points.
    Let's also look at pets that can no longer be tamed:
    Bane Dragon: Trained intensity range: 8585 - 9355
    Dread Warhorse: Trained Intensity Range: 8585 - 9355

    Basically, no new player can EVER have a pet tamed by themselves that comes even close to this. This is NOT RIGHT.

    2) Items no longer obtainable.  See this thread.  Not much more to say there. 

    3) Vet rewards:  Does anyone really think a new player who starts his account will see a 20 year vet reward?  At this point, we're pandering to the people who can't move on.  My account is 9 years of active service.  There's no doubt in my mind that I'll ever be able to use even the 15 year rewards.  The new rewards on test center as being less than 10 years are a step, but perhaps its time to consider removing vet rewards and making them obtainable through other means, or allowing players to purchase time.

    I know there's several other items that we've ignored.  Perhaps its time we started focusing on making this game that we all (supposedly) love to be more open to new players, rather than creating limited time events, items, and pets that were only available to those who played during that time.  I'm looking at you Halloween events, Christmas events, and 20th anniversary story line.

    While I can agree on points # 1 and 2 I cannot on point # 3 Vet Rewards....

    Why not ?

    Because there is PLENTY Veteran Rewards for lower Years.

    The Vet Rewards being added anew for this Year will be for Years 1, 2, 3, 5, 7 and 10.

    So, a player starting anew DOES HAVE lots and lots of Veteran Rewards to claim as their account time progresses.

    Top Years Veteran Players, nonethtless, are fully justified, to my opinion, to have THEIR own top Years Rewards because, after all, it is THEM who have been the "backbone" of Ultima Online support over these Years....

    My point being, that it is quite important, to my opinion, that a Business needing to "plan" ahead can have at least a number of long timers' accounts which have been kept active all over these Years to base the amount of available resources on which to them plan expansion for Ultima Online over time....

    Having the ability to count on a number of accounts which are kept as active for 20 and then 21 Years and then 22 Years I think it as important because, no matter how few, they are STILL "some" resources that look moreless possible to be counted on...

    Therefore, I find it just fair and beneficial that the Company running Ultima Online was to thank these long timers active accounts with Veteran Rewards specific to those Years.

    Furthermore, more and more Veteran Rewards, I noticed, require a high Year active account to be claimed but can then be used by any account....

    So, frankly, to have Veteran Rewards that can only be claimed by "Top" Active Accounts Years I see it beneficial for Ultima Online, its upkeek and Development and a good business decision when coupled with a whole lot of other Veteran Rewards for also the lower active account Years.

    The "highest" Year Veteran Reward is for 10th Year active account....

    I sure hope that next Year there will be a Veteran Reward claimable by 22 Years old active Accounts only, for the reasons above explained....
  • Petra_FydePetra_Fyde Posts: 351
    There are no veteran rewards, other than the serpentine dragon mount, requiring 20 years of subs to claim. The devs stopped adding year requirements at year 15 and started adding items to lower years instead.
    https://uo.com/wiki/ultima-online-wiki/items/veteran-rewards/
  • IkeeluIkeelu Posts: 134
    @Xare, go ahead and tell yourself whatever you want. The Cu Sidhe is the only tameable with healing, it is also rideable. You can feed it fruit which is neat for certain instances. Chivalry is proven to be highest damage output 1v1. So as far as catch all pet Cu is it. Sure I prefer a beetle on the team, if there is a team... also the Cu works for all current endgame content. You can die and come back to a Cu still fighting because of it’s healing. Honestly I don’t think you have a clue about pets. Intensity means nothing! Skill combos are mo-betta. If beetles could get chiv/rune/ai they would prob be top pet regardless of cu healing. 

    GLHF
    esdxWhere is the bank? 
  • MerusMerus Posts: 68
    Ikeelu said
    The Cu Sidhe is the only tameable with healing.


    Um... no it isn’t.
  • MervynMervyn Posts: 1,303
    Lions and triceratops have healing 
    I tell you the truth, tis better to do 10 damage on the right target than 100 damage on the wrong target.

    Breaking in the young since 2002
  • Lieutenant_DanLieutenant_Dan Posts: 82
    edited February 8

    A new players biggest handicap is that they know nothing compared to seasoned vets.
    You know nothing John Snow!  (sorry couldn't help throwing that in there)
    Lets face it,  with the complexity of todays game the more you know the better off you will be.  UO is a knowledge based game first,  skill second.

    Legacy pets,  Vet rewards,  Rare items....  All of that is chump change compared to the guidance from a knowledgeable  vet. 
    Yes all of those are nice perks but none of them are required to excel in whatever goals they set out to achieve.

    The best advise any of us could give a new player is to join an active guild and ask questions.

    All that being said.  Are they going to be around in 14 years to claim shard shields? 
    Most likely not but you never know
    I use shard shields as an example because it's the only Vet reward that they can not purchase from another player and use.  Who remembers the days when a new player couldn't use ethies unless they were old enough?  Thankfully they changed that.
    Are they going to change shard shields?  I highly doubt it. 

     Of course i wouldn't be opposed to them buying up to that point as suggested by others.  
    A first year Account ponying up over $2,000 to become a 14 year vet account would do well to help fund our addictive game.  What do they say about a fool and his money?  I must admit that i've been that fool on more than one occasion with this game and to be honest,  I would be tempted to buy up one or more of my secondary accounts if that option was ever made available.

    ICQ 
    695356108

    Keep UO a sandbox game - Say NO to instanced PvP
  • psychopsycho Posts: 40
    edited February 8
    Not gonna throw myself into some discussion but I do have a few comments on the topic "UO - Anti new player".

    1: NPC prices match new players and what they loot.  Player bought items does not. Only way for a new player to achieve gold for say an ethy on 14m would be farming something to sell, or buy for cash UO store item and sell. To farm something to sell for 14m sounds like high end to me. Alternativly play for a year and claim one himself, but with EJ theres no claiming vet rewards.

    2: I ran into some dude that had skills 80-90s who had a quest to kill some monster in dungeon wrong. The monsters had a mio hps and alot of resist, my tamer with fully trained pet struggled killing it, I had to bring another tamer and even then it would have taken an hour to defeat so i cba and aborted helping this guy.  My point is, the "new" dude should not have taken on the quest in first place. There should be some marking of the difiquilty of quests.

    The NPC in Eodon who sends out people to kill bosses for a book of mastry, another example, people better off buying the book of mastry from another player than doing the quest to beat some high end boss in first place. (we re talking about new players right)

    3: Lift some EJ restrictions. EJ players hear "cant do this, cant do that" all the time. New players are most likely not gonna subscribe, and the EJ + ingame UOstore is the commitment right?
    example: EJ cant find colored ore and gems. these are ingredients to many crafted weapons/armors. Silly to play without the option of crafting stuff, its kinda central in game. Also fix the silly EJ bank + commody deeds they run into all the time.

    4: empty servers, hard to find a group and a guild. huge disadvantage to new players when they dont find a hunting group or guild that does pvm encounters. Why would they stick around for years, doing solo stuff all the time.

    5: All shards has to welcome new players and help them out. Without a good community the new guys wont stick around. But primarily its EA/Broadswords job, not the community to keep new players around for years and years.

    Thank you
  • BilboBilbo Posts: 1,105
    @psycho EJ accounts have way more access then the old trial accounts did and we already have ghost cams back with EJ Accounts so please no to allowing EJ Accounts to get resources other then the basic or we will see resource scripters running free accounts.  I have not see a resource bot in years.
  • JollyJadeJollyJade Posts: 185
    edited February 9
    Best advice for a new player is to turn around... This game is not even working on closing the gap, it keeps introducing items that widen the gap every other event... 

    They can cater to the rare pixel crowd, which are already there and spending money;
    or they can cter to new players, which are not here and very uncertain if coming at all.

    So they go with the first. But of course it does not bring you new players when you have to tell them on day one "You can never get those OP items unless you pay me or my friends $$$".

    Lucky are those that don't know and just play :)
  • JollyJadeJollyJade Posts: 185
    Bilbo said:
    @ psycho EJ accounts have way more access then the old trial accounts did and we already have ghost cams back with EJ Accounts so please no to allowing EJ Accounts to get resources other then the basic or we will see resource scripters running free accounts.  I have not see a resource bot in years.
    "I opened a bar last year. There was always a chance that a guest would drink too much and start a fight. So instead of employing security I just left the bar closed all the time. That potential guests of mine spent their money somewhere else, but at least I didn't have to pay the security."

    Story of UO
  • RorschachRorschach Posts: 96Moderator
    Many posts have been removed from this thread. Some for topicality issues, some for Terms of Service violations and some merely because they were in response to a post that was removed and was left without context.


    Please keep the conversations civil and courteous even in disagreement.
  • I don't know the fix but I heard a new player say "There's stuff on search that cost millions of gold!". Yeah....
    Tell me lies, tell me sweet little lies
  • stuff costing more is a natural progression as a game gets older. there has to be some change in how much gold is dropped, or in the value of current gold.  IE, add two zeros to the gold pile in every loot table, or take a couple of zero's off everyone's bank accounts/vendor balances.  not that i want or even think it will happen, but that is about the only way to balance things for new players to have an equal footing. or the new people can listen to us old farts and learn how to make money the fastest. Either one will work, just one takes dev time, the other takes player time.  
    A Goblin, a Gargoyle, and a Drow walk into a bar . . .

    Never be afraid to challenge the status quo

  • MervynMervyn Posts: 1,303
    edited February 9
    Somewhere in the thread cul, my point got removed that a new non transferable shard would 100% solve all of the examples the OP gave. Perhaps the OP can provide some more examples of uo being anti-new-player that would not be resolved by a new non transferable shard.

    Also no doubt removed in error, was the fact that I agree with the OP and there are some things such as the character status that could be improved to somehow show pvp spell damage caps and faster casting caps which varies upon the spell schools and skills the player has. This would go a small way to make the game less elitest, simply by displaying information.
    I tell you the truth, tis better to do 10 damage on the right target than 100 damage on the wrong target.

    Breaking in the young since 2002
This discussion has been closed.