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have the devs considered combining shards?

Discussion in 'UHall' started by peanutbutter, Jul 5, 2008.

  1. peanutbutter

    peanutbutter Guest

    i'm sure it's been mentioned, but why not force-combine about 3 or 4 of the most inactive shards and offer some sort of temporary reward for playing them (like faster XP gain or better gold drops)?
     
  2. I'm all for it, but expect the inevitable flames and whines of home owners.
     
  3. :rant2: :grrr: :postcount:

    Location, location, location. I happen to like where our tower sits, as I am sure the owners of houses on all the other shards do.
     
  4. Ender

    Ender Crazed Zealot
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    Go back to WoW.

    And this is probably not going to happen because people would inevitably lose houses, items, characters.
     
  5. Dermott of LS

    Dermott of LS UOEC Modder
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    ...

    Have they considered it... maybe. Are they going to do it? No.
     
  6. peanutbutter

    peanutbutter Guest

    i don't play wow - couldn't get into it. i do and have, however, played GW, CoH, VG, conan, AL, eve, and more beta testing than i can remember. action like what i suggest is non-unique. CoH/CoV had a server that was unpopulated, so they offered double-XP and double influence (gold) and item drops on that server and it is not the most crowded and active server in the game.

    and i don't think it would be hard to manage guaranteed housing and transfer for a couple hundred people (which is what some shards have to show). especially if they know that they are going to make more money and gain XP faster there than anywhere else in the game.

    and, i suppose the old shards could stay open for the very strange individuals who enjoy having a nicely decorated house rather than a community to play a game with.

    for them, it's not an MMORPG... it's a "not-so MMORPG".
     
  7. Pickaxe Pete

    Pickaxe Pete Lore Master
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    Not if it is done with any creativity at all.

    I've made a suggestion several times to the devs that, if implemented, would be the most elegant solution.

    Here it is again:

    -5 clusters each of which will run on one physical server(s), one for each region (PAC MIDW ATL ASIA EU) with a couple hangers-on staying just as-is: AU, SP ruleset

    -Shared dungeon server (includes t2a....no reason to not combine this for each cluster) ....This sub-server will be the only one actually merged.

    -Moongates have a toggle to choose the shard before the destination.

    Voila, no one loses any items, or heaven forbid, their home. Players run into each a lot more for interaction, making cluster events very workable, and dungeons will be busy again.
     
  8. peanutbutter

    peanutbutter Guest

    they'd have to put in a traffic blocker like you find on other games (like conan, where you have to wait 10 minutes to play because of overload).

    other than that, it sounds like a pretty good solution.
     
  9. azmodanb

    azmodanb Grand Poobah
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    This topic has come up many times over the years... is it a great idea? In my opinion yeah. I have played UO for years... I think I have even posted this topic years back on this same forum...

    It would be though pretty impossible to get an "ok" from all the players with houses.. to tear them down and combine shards.

    To do this houses would need to all fall... items would not get lost if of course they worked on it for a while... linking items in houses to players.. putting them in a moving crate along with your bank and everything linked to your player... but of course with the track record of such things, of course something would get lost... someone would get mad, etc. So it's just a good idea in EA's mind to just not do it, and that is the answer right there. It's not ever going to happen no matter how nice it would be to play on a packed shard again.

    But then that brings up the good ol, "should there be a population screen before picking a shard?" showing how many players are on each shard... I know many of the older shards out there have great populations... but do you wanna start over or pay for a char transfer? Many do not.

    I agree this would be a nice thing to do, combining shards... BUT it would be easier if they just gave each character a free xshard (not a token but something linked to an account, so there is not some big token sale again) so players could move around and make other servers more full.

    But then again how would you know where to move without having a population list? haha .. it's a catch 22... people dont know where to move, you could end up at a more barren server, rather then a more populated one.
     
  10. E_T

    E_T Adventurer
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    This is inevitable as the player base shrinks. Why do you think they are letting us get rid of all our junk with the clean up britannia events? Maybe because that's less stuff we can whine about when we get our free shard transfer tokens and a drop dead date for low populations shards. All my opinion, of course.
     
  11. E_T

    E_T Adventurer
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    The outcome of current in game event scenarios could also determine which shards close. If the Shadowlords are not defeated on your sever, your server shuts down, as a simplistic example.
     
  12. Pickaxe Pete

    Pickaxe Pete Lore Master
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    All of these comments are making a lot of assumptions about how they might implement such a thing. I really doubt they would implement it like that. (hint: see my post above.) No shards need to close.

    Played DAoC lately?
     
  13. Vesta

    Vesta Visitor

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    I think this is where we are heading now with this event. They are going to reassemble the Gem. Thus, no more different shards of the Gem.

    I predict this first on this day.
     
  14. wrekognize

    wrekognize Guest


    I really doubt it. Combining the shards in any form is a bad idea.
     
  15. AesSedai

    AesSedai Guest

    - I was toying with an idea like this. Thinking of Mythic/Daoc, I started thinking about cross shard PvP realms. Creating areas where people from multiple shards could come together and do some fighting. I've been pondering arena battles and such for UO for quite awhile but no idea what or if anything like that will really happen.

    As far as combining shards due to low population: No.
    Many of us have already been given free character transfer tokens from EA. Some people like low pops. and some like high pops. If you want more or less, then we already have the tools to relocate.

    (Yes I'm sure the devs have considered combining shards over the years. But why bother as the hardware & even the hardware upgrades have long been paid for? Unless they drop out of some territories they will still have to maintain the multiple server banks around the world, which surely house more than just UO servers alone. And then what happens when the subscriptions start to rise? Add more shards? Nah, just leave 'em the way they are and perhaps add more down the road if necessary. Consolidating shards will just give the doubters that much more reason to fear the end is nigh, and quit. Why give subscribers more incentive to just quit playing?)
     
  16. Ni-

    Ni- Guest

    Why do shards even need to be combined? To have a greater likelihood of personal interaction? Solution, play on a higher populated shard. I don't understand what is so difficult with that.

    There are some people that specifically play on lower populated shards for the very reason of not having to deal with as many people. That may seem anti-social/anti-MMORPG to some, but to those that prefer it, it is more enjoyable.

    Why should others have to suffer a combination for the sake of those that want more player interaction, when those player could attain what they want by simply going to a higher populated shard?
     
  17. Fink

    Fink Guest

    Why is it so terrible/trivial some people wish to retain their homes?

    Some of us hold shard landmarks, player-run establishments that have been around since forever, player towns unique to the various shards. Basically, to suggest merging shards, you're asking to wipe away all that history. And yes, that is a big ask as the community of which you speak is often built around such establishments.

    For home owners, trivialising this sort of move is akin to, for example, telling PvPers that they have to give up their playstyle for the greater good of the playerbase. That's happened once before (Trammel), and we've been paying for it ever since.

    Let the shards grow/shrink as nature dictates. If a shard drops to ludicrously underpopulated levels, then offer some kind of transfer package to those who remain. There's a sort-by-population button on the login screen; if people want to move to somewhere more densely populated, that choice is available to them already.

    Aside from all that, this merger wouldn't work for isolated shards. Take Oceania as an example. The nearest shards are all Asian. Even if we all spoke Korean and/or Japanese, the ping is mediocre at best. Basically we have no suitable shards with which to merge.

    Rather than a shard fire sale they should be focusing on attracting more subscriptions and, ideally, players.
     
  18. Bono of LS

    Bono of LS Guest

    im only a 6 yr vet and just a weekend player due to work but i think its a cool idea.
     
  19. Cadderly

    Cadderly Journeyman
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    Frankly it's because there is no such thing as a higher population shard. The most populated shards seems to be Atlantic and it's a ghost town during most hours of the day. I could still go do whatever I wanted there and not see another player to interact with.

    I would love to see some shards combined or atleast have ilsh and t2a turn into a melting pot
     
  20. Omnicron

    Omnicron Stratics Legend
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    One of the things I liked about EvE was that it was all one comunity. You had to jump wormholes/gates to get to the deeper part of the world where the bad guys hang out, but I thought having something like 250k people being able to interact on the same server...just my twe cents.
     
  21. Yalp

    Yalp Guest

    Did I miss the part of the discussion that detailed the benefits of reducing shards? What is the cost that such a move would save? Why would such a move be necessary? I feel like I have come in the middle of the movie.. someone care to offer?

    LORD Yalp of Zento, CTDM
     
  22. NewThunder

    NewThunder Guest


    Why? UO offers a nice variety of shards to select from. The cost to maintain the currents shard is minimal. The only reason I could see to change one of the existing shards would be to change it to a retro shard.
     
  23. Norrar

    Norrar Lore Master
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    arent they trying DAoC out with a "retro" shard? Thought i heard about, maybe if that game goes well with it.....
     
  24. Vesta

    Vesta Visitor

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    No you didn't miss anything. Just the usual whining from these lots.
     
  25. phantus

    phantus Stratics Legend
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    This would be a great idea if you wanted to **** off all the people who play on low pop shards because they don't want to be crowded. Yes, they do exist. You see, the people who don't pvp(that being the majority of UO players) don't havea great need to compacted in so they can find a target. Their targets are monsters and they are the same on each shard. The more people on a given shard the less opportunity to kill the monsters.

    Go figure. That game really sucks.
     
  26. Yalp

    Yalp Guest

    I play on Baja.. small shard.. we tend to know each other very well. Some would argue small shards have no commmunity.. I strongy disagree!

    Also.. small shards allow peeps who don't have uber puters to get a chance at some good stuff. Fewer shards.. fewer drops... only those who have systems (and cheats) the rest can't even touch will get the most wanted items. That would be a game killer.

    I know I'd quit if all I could ever be is a meat shield for someone who ran speed hacks!

    LORD Yalp of Zento, CTDM
     
  27. Er, you apparently have not given much thought to ...

    houses and locations that might be in the same or overlapping spots
    the mechanics of x-sharding characters ... because that is what will be needed in effect
     
  28. Erekose

    Erekose Seasoned Veteran
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    I would give up both of my Castles if it meant keeping UO alive, but too many people would complain.

    I wouldn't miss my stuff and pixel Castles as much as I'd miss the small but vibrant Legends community. Great people there.
     
  29. Pickaxe Pete

    Pickaxe Pete Lore Master
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    If it is done right, none of this would come to pass, and it is even simpler to code.

    No one loses anything, everyone wins. Nice, eh?

    Hint, see my first post above. :bdh:
     
  30. Tina Small

    Tina Small Stratics Legend
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    Others have pointed this out every time this topic comes up: Which characters will be sacrificed from your account if you already play on multiple shards and have the max or almost the max number of characters possible on the shards to be combined?

    As hard as it is for some people to believe, there are other people who really don't want to play on crowded shards.

    If you don't think your shard's population is big enough, then start working on getting more people to come to your shard or get your friends and family to play UO. The game needs more people. What it doesn't need is the negative press and negative reactions that would result from shard mergers. No one in their right mind would decide to play UO or come back to UO if shard mergers started to happen. It would be like a death knell.

    And if you don't believe me that it would be a death knell or that many would think of it as such, just go look at what happened to one of EA's other online games in the last year. The Sims Online ("TSO") has probably never been huge, but about a year ago, EA decided to actually have its developers start paying attention to it. The dev team worked closely with the small playerbase to implement a lot of changes. Then they masterminded a city merger (cities in TSO are what shards are in UO). They also changed the game's name to EA-Land. So far, so good. Players relatively happy. Then, lo and behold, surprise surprise, guess what happened next? EA announced TSO is closing down in August.

    From what I've been able to read, many of the TSO players obviously feel betrayed and used. Why do they feel used? Well, I guess a lot of them submitted their own ideas and artwork to be used in TSO for many of the neat features that were being added. EA had also implemented a feature where you could pay real money to purchase in-game currency (I think they had a bit of a currency wipe when they merged cities). Some players wondered if their ideas and artwork were actually solicited for use in another game, or that the many changes/updates done in the last year were used on them as a trial before implementing them in another game. People who spent real money for in-game currency up to the day before the announcement feel like they should have been warned.

    Are we on a similar path with UO? I guess only time will tell. However, if UO is following a path that mirror's TSO's, then what comes next? Shard merger. We've got the dev team working on a lot of changes and improvements. Is it because the game is going to continue, or are they testing out stuff before they dump it into another game? I would love to think that all the attention UO seems to be getting lately is because EA/Mythic has decided to keep UO going and perhaps do another expansion and market the heck out of it. But after seeing what happened with one of their other online games, I'm more than a bit skeptical.

    If you really think shard mergers are the answer to making UO more enjoyable for you, go right ahead and clamor for it. However, I think you're trying to solve what you see as a problem (not enough people to play with) in an unproductive way. Actually bringing more bodies into the game seems like a much much better way to get more people to play with, rather than trying to cram the few that do still play into as small a space as possible. And every one of us has the ability to try to get more people playing....it isn't something we have to leave up to EA.
     
  31. THP

    THP Stratics Legend
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    The big trouble is the smaller shards like origin are basiaclly keeps and castle only that are kinda worthless.. because there is empty room to place more.... hence how can u say to someone on origin we close your shard and can u move to xxxx shard.. we will pay the move but sorry we cant give u the keep or castle u had on the new xxxx shard....because the keep and castle on your moving shard is very hard to get...worth milllos!!!

    simply put it aint gonna happen...............
     
  32. D'Amavir

    D'Amavir Guest

    I would be ok with a server merger if, and only if, they worked on it long and hard to ensure that player housing was not drastically impacted. It could be done, for sure. The devs could build the lands in a way that allowed player towns from server A to be moved and relocated to server C while still allowing player towns/houses located on server B to do the same.

    A lot of work? Sure. But it would allow player towns to survive while still increasing server population on the merge to server. Not sure if the work would be worth the gain but there are definitely ways to make it happen.