Announcements - 2002/04 - Betrayal

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Teaser

Original Link (now dead) - http://www.zone.com/asheronscall/news/ASHEeventteaser0402.asp

Click to return to Microsoft Zone Archive

Betrayal


April 5, 2002

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She wore her fatigue as a thick and heavy cloak draped over her mind. It helped protect her from the terror threatening to overwhelm her. And when the fatigue was not enough to stop her from thinking about the events of the last few months, she turned to anger. The incandescent flame of rage burned away any shreds of panic that managed to break through the dull layers of sleeplessness.

Betrayal. Betrayal at every turn. Betrayed by Asheron, who brought her to this strange land. Betrayed by Thorsten as his lifespark vanished on the end of that demon's pincer. And now betrayed by Nuhmudira, next to Asheron her closest advisor.

Her land was under siege. Elemental attacks rising. New and powerful golems appearing in the Direlands. New enemy fortifications. And now, the time when she needed sage counsel the most, she was alone. Asheron had been gone for the last few weeks. He had been disappearing more and more recently. Thorsten was gone forever. And Nuhmudira. . .

She had completely vanished. Elysa had trouble believing the rumors Jaleh had passed to her about Nuhmudira. No, her rage would not allow her to harbor any illusion. She did not want to believe the rumors. But that had nothing to do with the truth. Oh, Nuhmudira, what have you done?

Could she trust no one? Even Borelean, her pride and joy (my son, the monster tried to kill my son. I will see you dead, Martine. I will scatter your ashes to the four corners of the world...), was too young to help. She could not rely on even him.

The storm that Nuhmudira had warned her about so many months ago had come. It could soon rage in full force. And in what shape was Elysa to meet the challenge? Exhausted. Furious. Alone. She thought back to an earlier time, a time of nightmares and blood. There, deep in the dank stinking lair of the Olthoi Queen, she had seen her compatriots and love slaughtered by a loathsome monstrosity. She remembered the brutal hammering force of grief and despair, and the bright shining rage that, for that moment, cleansed the despair from her soul. As she had drawn back the arrow that pierced the glistening, faceted insectoid orb straight through to its abominable brain, she had felt nothing but a calm, soothing vengeance.

Standing in her stone chambers, dust dancing through sunlit air, that feeling once more washed through her. Exhaustion and rage were both replaced by a cool sense of. . . anticipation. Deep within her mind, she was readying her arrows, sharp and deadly. When a guard rushed in to inform her of the latest events, he was surprised to see her smiling.

__________

“Kai,” Nuhmudira's voice cracked as she raised it above the whistling wind. Her red hair and dark skin showed in harsh opposition to the snow-capped mountain they climbed. “How much further?”

Kai, wearing the green leathers of a peasant, turned to his master and pointed to a clearing. There a large head rested, its maw gaping wide, beckoning them to enter.

“The library lies within, Master.” He turned and entered.

Nuhmudira pulled her robes more tightly about her. Ibn Rab's blood still strengthened her body, but the chill was enough to make the strongest of people shiver. A warm glow shone within the head, and the soft purple glow of one of the many portals could be seen at the foot of a flight of stairs that lead into an Empyrean foyer. Her reward for teaching this upstart was close, so close.

followed Kai inside.

__________

Unlike any other gaming experience, the world of Asheron's Call continues to evolve. In March, the strange and terrible Crystal Golems appeared. To help combat them and other dangers of the land, adventurers made use of their deadly arrows and found refuge in another wave of housing. For April, the changes and additions taking place will all soon be revealed. Join us, as we open our April Event, Betrayal. Be sure to continue your part in this incredible ongoing story, and we'll see you in Dereth!

Rollout Article

Original Link (now dead) - http://www.zone.com/asheronscall/news/ASHEeventrollout0402.asp

Click to return to Microsoft Zone Archive

Betrayal


April 9, 2002

Img swords.jpg

Spring is arriving in Dereth, the snow steadily retreating from its warm embrace. It is said that one may find sunflowers in certain meadows. And other places report the appearance of plants that have not been seen in Dereth in many months. Yet, the warm sunshine and mild weather cannot completely dispel an uneasy chill of anticipation.

A brother searches for his older sister, seeking clues in a written trail of loss and grief.

The skies are clear of winter snow, the air gentle. The sun glints off the bronze statues that grace the towns, warming the rich metal. But for one errant day, the statues have been faithful in gifting protections to the people. The Arcanum will still not admit to providing the statues to the towns but the value of such gifts cannot be disputed.

Somewhere, Martine writhes in incandescent madness, muttering words of vengeance and machination.

The Arcanum, which has been striving steadily to provide more settlement housing, has added more Cottages and Villas and portals to most of those placed in the previous month. They have also taken a new and ambitious approach--they have constructed and opened Residential Quarters, which provide communal defense for large numbers of Isparians. “Safety in numbers,“ is an ancient, oft-recited saying that all Isparians know, from the smallest child to the highest king. Its truth cannot be disputed. Within these quarters Isparians may live, laugh, make plans, all the while secure from the denizens that roam the land.

Nuhmudira had disappeared. Her whereabouts are still unknown.

Spring is a season of hope and as a symbol of this High Queen Elysa has declared that Weddings may once again take place in the land. All citizens of Dereth who wish to show their commitment to a beloved one through the vows of marriage may do so, be it in a sunrise-lit outdoor chapel or the faithful old Wedding Hall.

Mages skilled in Item Magic are finding they now have two additional Tie spells to add to their art. All Isparians have been granted a means to travel to a selected Lifestone without first paying the penalty of death, albeit with a loss of mana.

The mild weather softens the land. The sunshine warms upturned faces. And everyone tries to ignore the shadows looming in the distance.

Highlights include:

  • Endurance is now a useful attribute for almost all adventurers, be they warrior, archer, or mage. Benefits include faster regeneration rates, resistance to drains and damage, and more!
  • New portal spells allow players to travel farther and wider in their search for adventure! And once the province of only a select few, now all players with Item Magic can recall through their last visited portal. Also, all players, regardless of whether they have Item Magic or not, can recall to a Lifestone at any time.
  • Residential Quarters have opened! Now you have an opportunity to find a space to call your own. Recall to your home, store your items, and even display a few choice possessions! With thousands of rooms opening up each month, soon every player will have access to these great features!
  • Celebrate the spring with a wedding! Now you and your loved one can be joined in matrimonial bliss. Conquer Jealousy, Greed, and Anger, and you and your potential mate can live happily ever after.


Be sure to check the Developer's Notes for April, the State of the Code, and the Letter to the Players, to learn more details of the Betrayal event. Join us as we continue the ongoing saga of Asheron's Call, and we'll see you in Dereth!

Release Notes

Original Link (now dead) - http://www.zone.com/asheronscall/news/ASHEeventbuild0402.asp

Click to return to Microsoft Zone Archive

Developer's Notes


April 9, 2002

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Here are just some of the additions made in the April 9 game update, Betrayal. The following list is comprised of detailed notes straight from the developers themselves. For a summary of things of interest, be sure to consult the official event article, Betrayal.

We appreciate your feedback and bug reports in helping to ensure that the world of Dereth is a stable and fun place to be. Please submit any such bug reports to http://bugs.zone.com.



New Functionality and Content

  • A few new dungeons and quests.
  • Wedding bells are ringing, flowers and plants are blooming.
  • A new boss creature roams the Dires.
  • There are a number of new portal spells available now to players. See the Letter to the Players for more details.
  • The functionality of @lifestone has now been changed such that it no longer kills you and leaves a corpse, but instead returns you to your Lifestone. This animation takes roughly 15 seconds, and spends half of your current mana. It is available to all players at all levels.
  • A new command, @die, has the same functionality as the old @lifestone command, so that one may choose to die at any point, leaving a corpse.
  • There have been a number of changes to the way Endurance functions in AC. See the Letter to the Players for more details.
  • There is a new Panel, the Character Information Panel, which takes over the former Burden Panel. The icon for the panel remains the same, but it is now a dark brown color when the character is not overburdened. This new Panel relates: @age, @birth, @deaths info, the new Endurance info, and the burden info (when applicable).
  • A new form of housing, Residential Quarters, is now available. See the Letter to the Players for more details.
  • There is a new command, @allegiance boot <name of offending player> usable only by the monarch of an allegiance. This command allows a monarch to kick out a player from any level within the monarch's allegiance. This works regardless of whether the character is online.
  • There is now a new option in the Character Panel that allows the act of dragging an item to another player to open up the Secure Trade panel with that player. This option is off by default (meaning that the old behavior of: dragging an item to a player gives the item to that player, still applies).
  • Trying to “use” (double-clicking) another player now results in the Secure Trade Panel being opened up with that player.


Miscellaneous Improvements and Changes

  • 150 Cottages and 50 Villas have been added to the world.
  • 1,000 Residential Quarters have been added to the world.
  • House Settlement Portals for those settlements added in March have been added to the world.
  • Along with the portal magic changes, there are now only three types of portals in the world: Summonable and Recallable; Recallable and Not-summonable; Non-recallable and Non-summonable. A portal that is tie-able is now automatically recallable. Tie-able and recallable are now synonymous terms.
  • Also, any time you cast portal recall, you become subject to the restrictions placed upon the original portal that was tied to. For example, if a player ties to a portal which was only accessible by levels 1-20, and the player then becomes level 21, that player will no longer be able to recall through or summon that portal.
  • The Society Explorer quests have undergone a minor face lift: The agents give you more information about the quests in the outpost towns, all dungeons associated with quests are now restricted up to level 20 (in some cases they had been restricted to level 6), some of the spawn timers on the quest items have been reduced to the proper level (roughly 30 seconds), and the rewards are overall greater for the quests.
  • It is now possible to imbue current versions of the Hollow Sword, Axe, Spear, and Mace, to craft slightly better versions.
  • There was a bug in our download system which sometimes required players to download the patch twice or in the worst cases required a complete download of a new portal.dat file. We believe we have fixed this bug.
  • The Dark Myrmidion (the creature that carries the Bone Mace), has had its armor value and regeneration rate lowered.
  • We changed the numbers on how much ammo, pyreals, and components spawn when they appears through the treasure system. Players should expect to find higher amounts (the spawn rate has not changed, just the amount that spawns) at nearly all levels of the treasure system.
  • Dual-spell jewelry now has a chance of spawning at virtually all levels of treasure.
  • You must now use Victual Infusions on Health and Mana Draughts, not Health and Mana Infusions, in order to create Health and Mana Potions.
  • Hooks that have been turned “invisible” by house owners are now no longer selectable with the keyboard select keys. Turning them visible will allow them to be selected again.
  • We fixed a number of client crashing bugs caused by trying to inscribe various items under certain conditions.
  • Olthoi Mounds in dungeons are now ethereal, and cannot be perched upon.
  • There have been some slight changes to the Olthoi Queen quest.
  • The Hea Raider's Cache can now only be opened by a key.
  • The six villas in the Last-Stop-Before-Dires settlement have had their villa portals to their dungeons fixed. We apologize for the inconvenience.
  • Last month (March), we changed some of the dynamics of the Queen Quest such that the broadcasts triggered by the Quest are local broadcasts instead of global broadcasts.
  • The amount of treasure a Singularity Trove contains has generally been increased.


Minor Details

  • The summon/recall/tie/ls spells now have slightly different icons.
  • The Training and Academy Cestuses now do bludgeoning damage.
  • There was a bug that caused the scrollbar in the Character Options Panel to not function correctly. This has been fixed now.
  • The weight of the starter crossbow and starter nabut have been reduced to 10. The poor Wayfarer (and especially the Gharu'n Wayfarer) will no longer start life with over 100% burden.
  • The Crystal Golem now can no longer fizzle its spells.
  • Shadow Dye Vendors now buy back dyes (although at a drastically reduced cost).

Letter to the Players

Original Link (now dead) - http://www.zone.com/asheronscall/news/ASHEletterapril02.asp

Click to return to Microsoft Zone Archive

Letter to the Players


April 09, 2002

Betrayal
Once again, the April Event, Betrayal, like its predecessors, brings a host of new content and gameplay to Asheron's Call. The one theme that runs through all these changes is our desire to let players play and explore more in Dereth and have more fun than ever. Let's get started:

Housing

As we mentioned last month, April sees the advent of a new housing dynamic in Asheron's Call -- Residential Quarters.

Residential Quarters are comprised of 100 rooms, all within the same “dungeon” type space. These rooms are separate from one another, and each room is owned by a separate player. The overall “Quarter” has some shared communal spaces to be enjoyed by both the various owners and the public, but only the owner and their guest list may enter the specific room.

Each room has a few hooks upon which to place items, as well as a 50-item capacity storage chest. The cost to purchase the room will be 100,000 pyreals and a Writ of Refuge. The maintenance cost for the room will be 10,000 pyreals, due every three months, as opposed to the maintenance period for the other types of housing, which is one month.

Players will also be able to recall to their RQ room, using the same command they would for a Cottage or Villa. One difference between RQs and landscape housing is that the location of your RQ will not show up on your House panel. Also, keep in mind that a player may not own both a landscape dwelling and a RQ room, just one or the other.

As for the overall implementation of RQs now and in the future: This month there will be a 3-city ring, each with one portal leading to a “hub” dungeon. This dungeon will have 10 portals inside, each one leading to a different dungeon, each dungeon containing 100 RQ rooms. So for April, there will be 1000 RQ rooms available per world. For May, we are planning on an additional 2000 RQ rooms per world. There will probably be another 2000 rooms available in June. We will also continue to add landscape housing during this time. This month we are releasing another 200 total landscape units: 150 cottages and 50 villas. We are committed to adding both kinds of housing until every player has an option of owning either a landscape dwelling or an RQ.

Our future plans for housing include (all of these are scheduled for some time in the next 5 months -- if that estimate changes, we will let you know):

  • Adding more usable hooks in the mansions.
  • Allowing players to be able to use pyreals and Writs to purchase additional storage space in their houses.
  • Allowing players to be able to use items while the items are on a hook, and create content that takes advantage of this ability, e.g. questing for a portal to (cool place X) to put in your house.


Endurance

For the past two years, people at Turbine and Microsoft have been discussing what to do with Endurance. We were distressed that players not only felt that having a high Endurance carried no real benefit during the longer stages of a character's life, but in fact felt that having a higher Endurance was a curse at the higher levels due to drain and a difficulty in healing.

This was counter-intuitive to us on many levels, and we kicked around a lot of ideas on how to make Endurance a more valuable attribute, and one that would increase the fun for players. Here is what we came up with:

First, some combination of strength and endurance (with endurance being more important) now allows one to regenerate hit points at a faster rate the higher one's endurance is. This bonus is in addition to any regeneration spells one may have placed upon themselves. This regeneration bonus caps at around 110%.

Second, the higher a player's Endurance, the less stamina one uses while attacking. This benefit is tied to Endurance only, and it caps out at around 50% less stamina used per attack. The minimum stamina used per attack remains one.

Third, the higher a player's Endurance, the more likely they are not to use a point of stamina to successfully evade a missile or melee attack. A player is required to have Melee Defense for melee attacks or Missile Defense for missile attacks trained or specialized in order for this specific ability to work. This benefit is tied to Endurance only, and it caps out at around a 75% chance to avoid losing a point of stamina per successful evasion.

Fourth, some combination of strength and endurance (the two are roughly of equivalent importance) now allows one to partially resist drain health and harm attacks, up to a maximum of roughly 50%.

Fifth, some combination of strength and endurance (the two are roughly of equivalent importance) now allows one to have a level of "natural resistances" to the 7 damage types. This caps out at a 50% resistance (the equivalent to level 5 life prots) to these damage types. This resistance is not additive to life protections: higher level life protections will overwrite these natural resistances, although life vulns will take these natural resistances into account, if the player does not have a higher level life protection cast upon them.

For example, a player will not get a free protective bonus from natural resistances if they have both Prot 7 and Vuln 7 cast upon them. The Prot and Vuln will cancel each other out, and since the Prot has overwritten the natural resistances, there will be no resistance bonus.

The natural resistances, drain resistances, and regeneration rate info are now visible on the Character Information Panel, in what was once the Burden panel. This panel now displays the above three Endurance benefits, the burden info, as well as @age, @deaths, and @birth info.

The 5 categories for the endurance benefits are, in order from lowest benefit to highest: Poor, Mediocre, Hardy, Resilient, and Indomitable, with each range of benefits divided up equally amongst the 5 (e.g. Poor describes having anywhere from 1-10% resistance against drain health attacks, etc.).

A few other important notes:

  • The abilities that Endurance or Endurance/Strength conveys are not increased by Strength or Endurance buffs. It is the raw Strength and/or Endurance scores that determine the various bonuses.
  • For April, natural resistances will offer some protection versus hollow type damage, whether it is from a Hollow Minion or a Hollow weapon. This will be changed in May.
  • These abilities are player-only, creatures with high endurance will not benefit from any of these changes.
  • Come May, you can type @help endurance for a summary of the April changes to Endurance.


Portal/Transportation Changes
The other major change for the month of April is our new dynamics for lifestone recalling and item magic portal spells.

Here are the basic changes:

  • All characters at all levels, regardless of whether they have Item Magic, will be able to use the command @lifestone to return to the lifestone they have attuned themselves to. This command will take a 15 second animation (during which you cannot move), and cost half of the player's current mana. This will also be the lifestone you are returned to when you die.
  • Players with Item Magic will get the following benefits:
  • A Lifestone Tie spell. The Lifestone that they use the Tie spell on will be the Lifestone they recall to when they cast Lifestone Recall.
  • An ability to Tie to, Recall to, and Summon a second Portal. Players with Item Magic now will be able to cast Primary Portal and Secondary Portal spells.
  • A new Portal Recall spell, called?drumroll?.Portal Recall (as opposed to Primary Portal Recall and Secondary Portal Recall). This spell allows one to recall through the last used portal, as long as that portal was tieable.
  • As a result of these changes, Portals are now either Tieable and Summonable, Tieable and Not-Summonable, or Not-Tieable and Not-Summonable. Tieable is now synonymous with Recallable.
  • Also as a result of these changes, Portals maintain their restrictions regardless of whether you are trying to enter them, recall through them, or summon them. For example, if you are level 30, you will not be able to recall through a portal that has a level restriction against anyone above level 20.
  • The portal that you were tied to with the old Portal Tie spell, will be the portal you are tied to with the Primary Portal Tie spell. Primary Portal Recall will recall you through that portal. If you had learned the old Portal Tie/Summon/Recall spells, you will automatically know the Primary Portal spells.
  • Finally, the @die command replaces the old @lifestone command. You may use @die to die and leave behind a corpse.


We hope these changes allow people to explore and hunt in areas they had never encountered before.

Weddings

Two months ago, Ken Karl, the Microsoft Project Manager for Asheron's Call, and Eric Helbig, Microsoft Test Lead for AC, came to Turbine to pay us a visit. Their mission was clear: They wanted weddings in AC and they wanted them now.

A few weeks before that, they had asked when we could put weddings back in the game. When we told them that we had no time for weddings, that if they wanted them so bad, they could come to Turbine and do it themselves, we were very surprised when they said, “Ok.”

So began a week of grueling training and effort. Ken and Eric slaved over banks of computers for days trying to both learn the ins and outs of being a Turbine content designer, as well as implementing the basics of what was known as The Wedding Bells quest.

Finally, at the end of the week, sweaty and exhausted, Ken and Eric left Turbine to go back to Seattle, happy in their efforts to get Wedding Bells in for April.

Of course, half the work was still undone (Those crafty MS people?.)

So, Kim Payson and Sean Huxter heroically stepped in and finished the job, using the design specs that Ken and Eric had so thoughtfully left for us.

We hope you enjoy the fruits of all their efforts?. let us know where you went for your honeymoon.

Hot Topics

  • Hollow Weapons ? The Hollow Weapon Upgrades are now in for April. The Hollow Sword, Axe, Mace, and Spear have been upgraded. Keep in mind that if you choose to upgrade your weapon (through a process which you will have to discover in-game), the weapon will have a wield requirement on it of 250 in the skill of the weapon.
  • We hope that making all levels of jewelry have a small percentage chance of having a double spell helps people of all levels find jewelry appropriate to their level.
  • Allegiance @boot command. As a monarch you now have a much-asked for tool to help control and organize your allegiance. We always appreciate feedback both on how this tool works for you, and other tools allegiances and fellowships need to manage these social structures.


Here are some specific details about the command:

  • Exact syntax: @allegiance boot <name of character to boot>
  • This command breaks the allegiance between the named character and that character's patron, just as if the patron had renounced the named character. Therefore, this command does not affect the experience cost for the booted character to swear allegiance to someone else.
  • Also, this command does not affect the bonds of allegiance between the booted character and his or her vassals -- they remain sworn to the booted character and therefore are also no longer part of the booting monarch's allegiance.


Known Issues

Please take note with the Drag and Drop Secure Trade option in the Character Panel: If you don't hit Apply after making the choice, it will not take effect, and dragging an item to a player will just result in giving that item to the player. This was mainly implemented for those players who inadvertently drag something to another player other than the player the item was intended for. If you actually want to initiate Secure Trade with a player, you can now just double-click on the player.

Two issues with the Wedding Bells quest:

  • If you dye the male wedding raiment it will always be green. This will be fixed in May.
  • Players are currently unable to dye the female wedding raiment. This will be fixed in May.


As mentioned above, currently Natural Resistances help a player resist Hollow Damage. We are changing this back in May (we could not fix it in time for April) for two reasons:

  • In terms of PvP, changing this dynamic would further reduce the effectiveness of Hollow Weapons, in a context in which they generally need to be made more effective rather than less.
  • Even more importantly, while we initially implemented the Natural Resistances in this fashion, after further discussion we realized that the whole goal of Natural Resistances was to mimic Life Protections, not be superior to the functionality of Life Protections. And if we wanted to keep Hollow creatures as the effective threat they are, we would need to upgrade their capabilities over time. Ultimately, we have decided to make Natural Resistances have no effect on Hollow damage. This will be done in May.


Next Month and Beyond

For May, we will be working on a number of different tweaks to dynamics to improve them for playability and fun.

Some of the highlights (please keep in mind that some of these items might be pushed out to later months):

  • Players losing fewer items when dying at the lower levels.
  • Making all items appraisable, regardless of skill or level of player, thereby removing all the functionality of the appraise skills. This will set up our replacement of the Appraisals skills with a whole new branch of skills, which will open up many new crafting branches for players. Part one of these changes is scheduled for June. We will release more information in May about what our plans are.
  • Further treasure changes, focusing mostly on Armor ? improving armor quality and distribution in many of the same ways we tweaked weapons. Also we will continue to make some small tweaks to the weapon loot system.
  • An upgrade to the Fellowship Panel, so that players can see the health, stamina, and mana of all players in their fellowship.
  • And lots of other cool things as well?.


After May, we will be working on tweaking and improving magic, melee skills, crafting skills, abilities to explore the incredible amount of content in AC, housing improvements, the mid-level play experience, and a new high-level playground.

We think we've made some significant progress on our goals over these last few months, and we're really excited about the next six months, both with our story and our game.

Yes, we AC1 folks over here at Turbine and Microsoft acknowledge that Asheron's Call 2 looks incredible and is going to rock the house. But we're not planning on going anywhere for awhile. The best of AC is yet to come.

Thank you for playing Asheron's Call!

-- The AC Team

State of the Code

Original Link (now dead) - http://www.zone.com/asheronscall/news/ashenewscodestate1.asp

Click to return to Microsoft Zone Archive

State of the Code


April 11, 2002

This is the latest installment of a frequently updated series of reports on The State of the Code for Asheron's Call. In this report, we keep players informed as to the state of some of the more technical aspects of AC, particularly bugs we are working on and technical limitations of which you should be aware. Look at the News page on the Zone for other articles about recent additions and changes to Asheron's Call.

I have noticed when I go into the Residential Quarters there is quite a bit of lag and sometimes I even get disconnected. Is there something going on?
With the introduction of Residential Quarters, we have seen some performance issues, such as an increase in lag reports and server disconnects. We are working on this situation and hope to have a fix soon. Additionally, we have decided to temporarily suspend additional Residential Quarters and landscape housing for the month of May. Instead, we will take this time to evaluate the system and identify ways to resolve these performance issues. We apologize for the inconvenience and we will keep you up to date on our progress for fixing the current situation. __________

State of the Code Archive
Below are items from previous State of the Code articles. Some items have been retired from the archive below because we believe they have been fixed. If they turn out not to have been fixed, we will revive those items.

@houses available
For the @houses available command to know of a house, the landblock containing that house has to have been visited by a player at some point. This only needs to happen once for the @houses available command to be aware of the house.

Queen's Quest Dungeons
One item left out of the Developer's Notes is that players will no longer be able to log in to dungeons associated with the Queen's Quest. This is to reduce the level of grieving that exists in the quest by players logging out and back in, to "jump" the quest (or prevent people from finishing it). When you attempt to log in to any of the following dungeons, you will find yourself back at your Lifestone instead:

  • North Damn Hive
  • Elyrii Hive
  • East Dam Hive
  • Central Hive (Queen)
  • Tiny Hive
  • Small Hive
  • New Hive
  • Simple Hive
  • Shallow Hive


Duplicate Covenant Crystals
If you see a house that has two Covenant Crystals outside of the residence, one indicating that the house is sold, one indicating that it is still open for purchase, then do not attempt to purchase the house.

Your purchase will fail, and the purchase price will be lost.

These types of houses are owned. We hope to have removed these "duplicate" Covenant Crystals by April.

Monday, February 18, 10:30 AM PST
A new client was made available to fix the “No Logon Server” issue that has been affecting the Windows 9x platform for some of our players. You should no longer be experiencing this problem.

We are aware of a problem that results in players getting an error when going through quest portals and receiving a message that they have solved the quest too long ago. We will be fixing this problem Tuesday morning. Watch the State of the Network for details on the time.

February 15, 10:30 AM PST: Update to the “No Logon Server Available” error:
At this time, we still do not have an ETA on a fix to this problem. We have teams engaged on the problem but have still not identified what the cause of this problem to be. We apologize for the continued inconvenience. More details here as we get them.

We are currently working on fixing two bugs that were introduced with the February update:

  • Players getting “No Logon Server Available” errors when they try to log on. We are investigating the cause of this and will update here when we have more information and an ETA for a fix.
  • Some portals (mostly quest portals) are giving an error that you have solved this quest too long ago and not allowing you to use them. We are working on a fix for this bug right now and will have it updated soon.


We hope to fix both of these bugs at the same time. Check back here for more updates on the timeframe for the fixes.

When running around in certain areas, I notice that I am getting extreme lag. Where is all this lag coming from?
Actually, the “lag” you are experiencing is an increase in CPU utilization, not network (or internet) lag. This is happening largely around three areas: Hebian-to, Shoushi and Arwic (up to the Abandoned Mines). There are a few isolated cases of it elsewhere in Dereth as well. We will have a fix for this in February. If this slowdown should cause you to be unable to log in, feel free to use “urgent assistance” to page an admin, and someone will come move you to a safe location to log in.

Mansions and Monarchy Restrictions
The Mansions released in December and January did not have the appropriate Monarch and Rank 6 purchase restrictions that Mansions are supposed to have. These will be fixed in February. However, when maintenance is due, the Mansion automatically checks for Monarch and Rank status of the owner, and the owner loses the Mansion if these requirements are not met. If you purchased a Mansion without being a Monarch and at least Rank 6, and you are not a Monarch and at least Rank 6 when the Mansion's maintenance period next becomes due, then you will lose that Mansion.

Also, Mansions sold in January have an incorrect purchase price. If any of these Mansions go back on the market after the February event, they will have a different and updated purchase price.

A Missing Cottage
There is a Cottage located at 40.1N 63.5E. While the Covenant Crystal is active, there is no "House" object actually present to be purchased. All purchase attempts on this Cottage will result in the purchaser losing his or her money, and no Cottage being purchased. This will be fixed in February.

How can I complete the Elysa's Favor quest?
There is currently a bug in the Elysa's Favor quest where characters starting at Holtburg will not be able to complete the quest by following the instructions of the NPC. Starting the quest in Yaraq or Shoushi, and following it from there should allow one to finish the quest successfully. This should be fixed in the next update.

My covenant crystal on my Mansion is not active. I cannot pay rent. Am I going to lose my Mansion?
We have discovered a bug where ten Mansions that were purchased in December (in each world), do not have active covenant crystals. We will have this fixed in February; in addition, we will be paying the rent for this month on those ten Mansions so you will not lose anything. Our apologies for the inconvenience.

Item loss in housing
When a server crashes, there still exists a risk that items kept in storage and on hooks in houses located on that server can be erased permanently. We are investigating this bug, and will update you as soon as we know more. At this point we cannot guarantee items' security in housing storage.

Specific problems with hooks
We have been receiving various and scattered reports of isolated hook problems. Please keep in mind that when you place 25 items in your house, your hooks will "disappear" to signify that you cannot place more items (if you wish to see your hooks, type @house hooks on, but you still won't be able to use one until you use less than 25 hooks). However, if you have a problem with your hooks independent of this, please contact an in-game support admin.

Generator issues
While not an exact repeat of earlier generator issues, we have seen numerous and verified reports of certain NPCs, monsters, and items not appearing in dungeons or on the landscape due to malfunctioning generators. We are currently investigating this issue.

Portals missing
Separate from the generator issue, we have received reports of known portals not appearing on the landscape.

Client crashing bug when switching characters
If you experience this bug, turn off your default radar coordinates, which should solve the problem. We are working on a more permanent fix.

I was just booted for “use of speed altering programs”. When did you start doing this?
Effective immediately, players who are detected using speed altering programs will be temporarily removed from Asheron's Call. Repeated use of these programs may result in permanent removal from the game. If you have been detected and feel there might be a mistake, please submit a report here and we will investigate.

When I give a Town Crier money, he is not giving me any information. Does the cat have his tongue?
There is actually a bug this month preventing the Town Criers from saying anything when given money. They should be back to their talkative selves next month.

I was disconnected from the game, and when I returned all my items in my house were gone. Where did they go?
We have identified a very rare bug where, in some server crashes, you could lose items in your house. We are treating this bug with the highest priority and are working on a fix. Right now, however, we are not certain what is causing this phenomenon. We suggest that homeowners use extreme caution when using hooks and secure storage until we are able to isolate and fix this bug. We apologize for the inconvenience.

When I go to subscribe to Asheron's Call Dark Majesty, I do not see a field that allows me to enter my coupon number. Did you forget to make this field?
When you are at the subscription area on AC Zone and are prompted to enter your Zone ID and Password, you want to make sure that the game you are subscribing to is “Asheron's Call Dark Majesty,” not “Asheron's Call.”

I have purchased a house, but every time I log in with my alternate characters on that account I get this message: “Your house has reverted due to non-payment of the maintenance costs. All items stored in the house have been lost.” Did I really lose all my stuff?
No! There is a bug broadcasting the wrong message to alternate characters on your account. In fact, you should just be getting the same reminder you would get when you log in with your main character that your rent is due. Nothing is actually touched in your house and we will fix this bug with the November update.

When I use the housing object in front of a house, and try to inscribe it, my game seems to crash every time. Am I doing something wrong?
We have discovered a bug that will crash your client if you try to inscribe any housing object (the little crystal standing in front of a house). We advise that players not try to inscribe these objects, the inscription will not work and your client will crash. We expect to fix this bug before Asheron's Call: Dark Majesty arrives in stores.

I love that I can see my extended chat window now when I close my backpack and view AC in the full window, but I noticed that every once in a while my client crashes when I try to extend that window more. What is going on?
We have discovered a bug that if a player extends their chat window and then goes into full screen (i.e., make it so your left panel goes away), they can crash their client if they try to manually extend that window by clicking and dragging the bar up. This bar cannot be raised manually. Players should avoid trying to raise this bar manually as it could result in this crash. The only way to expand the chat window is with the button in the upper right corner of the chat window. There are only two sizes that the chat window can be in.

When I do any emote, I crash to my desktop. What am I doing wrong?
We have been able to track the use of emotes, along with some 3rd party applications, to some players' client crashes. Asheron's Call does not officially support 3rd party applications/add-ons. It is advised that you either uninstall or not use these applications.

The Aerfalle Chest is broken (no scroll/robe), is that intentional?
This a bug tied into a larger tech bug that we are investigating. We hope to have a fix for this soon, but currently have no ETA.

When I use Jaizen Tan to get the new advanced title for “Thrown Weapons”, I am getting “Ballisteer”. Am I doing something wrong?
No, there is a bug that is preventing the correct title of “Projectilist” to be bestowed. We are working on the bug and it should be fixed soon.

Every time I try to get the "Bunny Master" title, I can never find Larry the Bunny Master. Where is he? Did he go on vacation?
Due to an unfortunate bug, Larry fails to regenerate from time to time. We are working on the problem and hope to have a fix in place soon. Thanks for your patience.

I am trying to use the new Component Buyer introduced in the June update but I cannot find any information in the game about how to use it. Am I not looking in the right place?
The help for using the Component Buyer was inadvertently left out of the June update. We apologize for the inconvenience. In the meantime, please go to the Details of Component Buying article for instructions on how to use the Component Buyer.

I have heard some reference to a mysterious Bach Lien. However, I can find no such person anywhere in the game. Does she really exist?
Although she is mentioned as an extension to the Exploration Society Letters quests, the search for Bach Lien is a bug, as she does not appear in the game. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused. Perhaps some time in the future the complete iteration of her tale will reach the loremasters of Dereth but for now she remains a mystery.

I am on the mage armor quest (the Thaumaturgic Plate quest), and after giving the Golem the permission note, I go through the portal it creates but all I see is black. Is this some kind of new dungeon?
No; in rare cases, some people are not getting the complete download of the new dungeon. You will need to go into your Asheron's Call directory and replace the “cell.dat” file that is currently there with the one from your Asheron's Call CD. Once you have copied the cell.dat file from your CD into your AC folder, right-click on the cell.dat file and select “Properties.” Please make sure that the “Read Only” box is not checked (otherwise you will receive an error message telling you that the cell.dat is corrupt). This procedure should solve your problem. Please note: You will have to download some dungeons over again when you enter them the first time after performing this procedure.

When I dyed my clothes/armor, I failed and now the Armor Level is worse. What happened?
Be warned: If you try to dye armor or clothes and fail, an Armor Level degradation will occur. Make sure you are high enough in the necessary skills before attempting to dye your armor or clothes.

I gave an item to the collector and he did not return anything to me, including my original item. Is he a thief?
No, he is not a thief. Each collector in the game is different from all others. Each has his own selection of items that he will take and return something else for. If you give a collector something that he does not collect, he may simply keep it and not return anything. You should talk to the collector first to make sure he takes what you are giving him.

I went right to my corpse soon after dying, but my corpse was gone, or it was empty!
Keep in mind that your corpse will not remain in Dereth for very long. It will vanish after a number of minutes equal to five times your character level.

Also keep in mind that you can only have a limited number of corpses in the world at the same time. If you are over this limit, you will not leave a corpse when you die. Instead, your items will end up on the ground, where they will quickly vanish.

In rare cases, you may die in such a tight and crowded place that your corpse cannot be properly placed, in which case your objects will simply drop to the ground (if they can be placed).

If you are a Player Killer and get killed by another player, that player can loot the items from your corpse. After any items are taken, the corpse will quickly vanish.

There is also a rare case discovered that involves your old corpses not decaying if you have items left on them, and if you have more than five corpses in the world, your subsequent deaths may not leave another corpse. If you are concerned that this is happening, you should travel to where your old corpse may be, and if it's there, take off all the items. At that point, it will decay normally and you will be able to generate a new corpse. This bug is being addressed soon.

If you are in auto-run mode and you lose your connection to the server, your character will keep running for some time until you re-connect or the server times out. Until this happens, your character will keep running without your seeing it, and can get killed by monsters. Your corpse will be in the direction you were running when you disconnected, at some distance away.

Still, all this does not seem to explain some anecdotes we have heard. We are looking carefully into them to assure that there are no bugs. Please use the “Urgent Assistance” option to alert our Online Team if you are sure that your corpse is unjustifiably missing.

My character is gone/has items missing!
If something strange has happened to your character, such as a location change, missing items, or items having disappeared entirely, you may be the victim of account stealing. This can be done by a few methods, each of which you can prevent. Please refer to our Security article on the "News" page for more information.

I am trying to sign into the Zone, but it says I have the wrong password. I know I'm typing it in right!
Those who are the victims of account stealing (see the previous section) may find that they cannot sign in. This is because the thief has changed the password to your Zone account. Please refer to our Security article on the "News" page for more information.

Attackers that are slower than me are hitting me as I run!
It's easy to mistakenly come to the conclusion that you are faster than a monster, when this may not really be the case. There is a “blip effect” that can contribute to this conclusion when a monster attacks; see below. Also note that there is no way to be sure how fast a monster is just by examining it. A monster has a Run skill as well; Quickness alone does not determine its speed.

We have done extensive testing (with average Internet latency) and determined that in no case did a monster that is genuinely slower than a player land more than one or two hits before falling and staying behind.

However, we also found that Internet latency can have a strong effect on how successfully you can run from a monster. If your connection through the Internet is slow or spotty, or if you are downloading more data than your connection can handle, it can allow slower monsters to catch up to you. Also, please realize that when you go from standing still to trying to run from a monster, it takes time for that signal to cross the Internet and reach the server. Until the server knows that you have started running, it thinks you are still standing there. Therefore, to avoid attack, you need to start running before the monster can reach you, and the slower your connection, the sooner you should run.

Monsters that attack me while I am running seem to fall back, then blip right on top of me. Can I get some of that magic?
Currently, there is a less-than-ideal visual effect when monsters attack you while you are running. They appear to fall behind you as they stop their running animation, in preparation for their attack animation. Then, when they do their attack animation, they suddenly appear to be right on top of you.

It may appear that you are outrunning a monster, which then suddenly gets a free “teleport” on top of you. You may think that you are faster than a monster and that it is cheating with this “teleport.” In actuality, the opposite is true: the monster has always been right on top of you, but it erroneously appears to stand still for the few moments it readies its attack animation.

I was in the water in a big river and hit invisible walls.
There are spots in large bodies of water that prevent you from going further, sometimes resulting in a maze of invisible walls. We want to fix this, but it's a bit tricky. Meanwhile, please consider these large bodies of water a hazard. If you hit such an invisible wall, go in the opposite direction -- you cannot "slide" along such a wall.

Why am I not supposed to jump onto steep slopes?
There is currently a bug where certain steep slopes are trapping players. This seems to happen when you jump onto a slope that you cannot naturally walk onto. We have been able to eliminate most areas where this is occurring, but there may still be a few out there we have not found yet. We hope to have all the locations fixed soon. Until we inform you that we have fixed this bug, please avoid jumping onto slopes, particularly steep ones. By doing so, you not only can be trapped but also may take repeated falling damage. If you happen to die on such a slope, you will not be able to recover items from your corpse. Use the "Urgent Assistance" option to request help getting unstuck.

I've told you about a bug. Why isn't it fixed?
We do read every single report of bugs, and strive to make AC completely bug-free. However, we will not make changes instantly. We want to group fixes together into major updates to prevent undue inconvenience to players. We also want to maintain a rigorous testing process to assure that our fixes do no harm. We value your reports of bugs, and we are hard at work to fix them as soon as we can.

Thank you!
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