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Punished for being helpful

Discussion in 'UHall' started by Warick, Jun 8, 2008.

  1. Warick

    Warick Visitor
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    It's a matter of irony. For years (over 100 month old account) I have been a loyal player and kept my account alive all this time. I've ran some successful guilds on both Napa Valley and Lake Austin. Even owned my own town at one point... that requires allot of accounts!

    Back in march of this year, despite my helping people for years, my character now sits in Jail and has been there for months.

    Why?

    I am a companion. One of the few (if not the last) that still has (or had) all of his powers and still took calls out of the newbie queue. I still followed the same guidelines that I've followed for years and now, because years ago I chose to volunteer my time, I sit in jail and rot.

    There were two kinds of Companions. The ones in Yellow Robes that were known as Senior Companions, and then the normal Companions. The yellow robes were kicked with the Seers and counsellors back in the day, but we normal companions were allowed to continue on with full power and ability... we just didn't have the level of support we used to have.

    We use our own characters, we pay for our accounts, the only things we had was a couple extra abilities to help newbies.

    So here's my character that I have been playing and paying for. An account that OSI/EA did NOT give me, a character I had before I applied for the companion spot and one I still have to this day.

    It used to be that if you wanted to stop being a companion, you just told a Yellow Robe or GM and they'd turn off your powers and off you went. Now... I helped someone and went to Haven and then logged in the next day to have a GM lie and tell me that I was going to be deleted due to being a Companion.

    This GM had no idea that there was a differance between Yellow Robe companions on free EA accounts, and normal companions on standard accounts played by every day players.

    I wrote and recieved an apology and was told that they'd have my character up and running ASAP and noted that I'd not be deleted. This made me very happy and I was content to wait.

    A few weeks went by and I asked what the delay was. I was told that I'd get an update as soon as possible... Months later now, no update and no playable character.

    Sure, I can run around in my cell... fun there eh?

    So this note is for anyone with companion powers. DO NOT USE THEM!!! YOU WILL BE PUNISHED FOR BEING NICE!!!

    Being a companion, you could not transfer the character because you'd loose your powers... All that the support staff needs to do is unflag me.

    Here's some irony for you...

    My powers no longer work. I cannot even see if there are newbies in the queue anymore. So if I have no powers, why leave me in jail? This was easy to do, it's the same system, just do it. Heck, transfer me somewhere and then back, it's not hard.

    So for years of service and years of being a paying customer comes down to naught. I love Ultima Online and will play it constantly for however long EA decides to keep it going... that is if I can play it at all.

    This is the nature of this post, to warn other players so they might not have both years of work lost and a sentamental character lost. This includes everything that character has, even the bank account.

    The funny part is that this character, being my primary character, has EVERYTHING that my account needs. Resources, regs, money, you name it.

    This is not a Rant, this is a warning. This is me begging for assistance and pleading with other characters to watch what you do so you need not suffer as I do.

    :please:
     
  2. Gidge

    Gidge Sage
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    i am so sorry :(
     
  3. RenaLynne

    RenaLynne Guest

    Ive never heard of companions...wow sounds like something they shouldnt have gotten rid of... Im sorry to hear about youre account. Sounds like you got...well cant use that word.
     
  4. Hunter Moon

    Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend

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    That is horrible and should be addressed immediately. I can't see how they can defend this if they said you would get your char back and they were sorry and here months later they still haven't done it. How hard could it possibly be and since it was their fault to begin with, shouldn't it have been expedited anyhow?? I hope you get a speedy resolution and am very sorry. Also, THANKS for all the kind help you have given over the years as a volunteer!

    Hunter Moon [HOT] Atlantic
     
  5. Nails Warstein

    Nails Warstein Rares Festival Silent Auctioneer
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    Will stratics allow you to post your correspondences with EA so the entire community can see how futile it is to deal with the powers that be.
     
  6. Beerman72

    Beerman72 Visitor

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    Jeremy, I hope you are taking notice of this. This is just another example of how things have gone to poop as a result of new staff being brought into the game. Good people such as the OP end up getting the short end of the stick due to the *past* not getting the respect and consideration it deserves.
     
  7. Killian

    Killian Guest

    I remember Companions.. They were such a great thing. The guy I had who helped me was great, and taught me alot of the basics.... even had him show me where the bank was... and since I was trying with all my might to kill a chicken at the time he came to see me, we both got a chuckle out of it when the chicken eventually killed me... haha

    You being punished just shows me that this support staff so out of loop with UO. I've never had to use a GM for a while now, but all these stories will just make me try to look after the issue my self before paging a GM.

    Hope this all get sorted out for you Warick, and hope you get your Main free'd out of jail...

    tis a very sad story.... :(
     
  8. packrat

    packrat Guest

    I see it more and more these days. GM's that have no clue how the game mechanics actually work. Does EA hire GMs that actually play UO?
    One guy goes to jail for changing his pets name in KR that was legal. One guy goes to jail for legally helping other players. What next? Are we going to go to jail for logging in to UO? GMs need to keep up to date with the progress of UO.. Give this guy his character back :gun:
     
  9. Hunter Moon

    Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend

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    I actually had two GMs help me out two days in a row and show up very fast without sending canned responses first. I even told them how amazed I was and impressed with the increased level of involvement since their move. It seems it is hit or miss with which kind of GM you get when you call for help :( I am hoping more of the kind I got start working for EA. I know it helped raise my satisfaction level with the game immensely.

    Hunter Moon [HOT] Atlantic
     
  10. Mama Faith

    Mama Faith Sage
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    Stories like this absolutely frustrate me. :grrr: If the 'powers that be' said that they'd take care of it, then it's time for them to do it!!! No ifs, ands or buts. I hope the next post you make will be in regards to a happy ending to this situation. Good luck.

    [​IMG]
     
  11. Beerman72

    Beerman72 Visitor

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    Dont forget about the guy who was sent to jail for a name he had for eight years!
     
  12. Snakeman

    Snakeman UO Forum Moderator
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    What a bunch of BS on EA's part here & on the GM that haddn't a clue as to what was going on. That is the problem as many have stated here, GM's now a days have no clue as to the mechanics & heritage of this game. Yes there are some that are knowledgeable, but very few. Now to have a chara sit in jail for "X" time on a Customer PAID FOR Account is absurd. Own personal opinion here is EA owes you a little compensation for this problem THEY created. I do hope Jeremy or someone from EA see's this post & gets your problem corrected. Another case of "Crusify the people helping people & bringing more enjoyment to their UO experience & possibly staying for years" but allow the obvious scripters to go about there business of scripting daily for months (some yrs) on end.... Doesn't make sense does it gang! :grrr:
     
  13. MalagAste

    MalagAste Belaern d'Zhaunil
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    I'm sorry about your character...... I too remember Companions.... I had a friend who was one..... for years..... I always loved him he was so much fun.... his name was Phoenix..... He lived on GL... He too had Companion powers for years... He was always helping Newbies.... I had alot of respect for him..... There is too little of that these days... UO has lost it's way... It no longer remembers what made it great.... this is just another sad confirmation of that fact.
    I certainly hope Jeremy or even Draconi can do something about this.


    [​IMG]
    Please click the egg/hatchling and help my dragons grow.
     
  14. Omnius

    Omnius Crazed Zealot
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    It seems sometimes that UO's forced moral codes took away the feeling of freedom to help people and the desire to see all people thrive. Instead of the virtues, we have the Soviet Union feeling.
     
  15. Beerman72

    Beerman72 Visitor

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    Unfortunately that is the feeling that comes along with someone trying to force feed you an opinion labeled as truth and law. Too often the GMs and EA Reps in the last few years have done things that made more than one person wonder if they were next in line for recieving thier dose of *truth and law*. Indeed it does ring of the USSR.

    IMO I think the recent public apology for lack of GM service (were sorry we didnt get your page...really!) was a cover up to delete all those negative GM sessions in the system. Its speculation mind you, but I can say this. A two year old GM incident disappeared from record but the mark (issue recieving mark was in fact legal) that came with it still remained.
     
  16. PASmountaindew

    PASmountaindew Babbling Loonie
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    a friend of mine gave me his account before he quit UO and one of the characters WAS a normal companion and even though I did not officially vollunteer, I used that character to help new players. But something happened one day and the character got stuck in follow mode and kept following a new player even though i tried to stop following the player and I even tried recalling somewhere but it just teleported me back to the new player and kept following. Finally I was able to recall to an Inn and log out and then logged in with a different character on that account and paged a GM and the GM took me to jail and unflagged the characters and took the powers away. But that was all done inside an hour and I was back to playing as a normal character.
     
  17. Oriana

    Oriana Babbling Loonie
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    jdalberg AT ea DOT com

    Send Jeremy an email. I'll bet she'll help if she knows.

    Ori
     
  18. Viper09

    Viper09 Grand Poobah
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    Wow. Reminds me of an unreliable mechanic telling me he will be finished in a couple days, only to be sitting around waiting for a couple of months. *Your car will be finished soon*

    I hope they get around to actually fixing the character. It is truly sad that they do not have those blue smurfs anymore. They helped me out abunch when I was a newbie, truly do miss them. I also truly do not understand why they canceled that program. Its like saying no to free labor, no one in their right minds would say no to free labor!
     
  19. LadyArden

    LadyArden Guest

    Have you tried paging a GM from within your jail cell? They should be able to send you back if they look at the why.. I hope. If not, 3 cheers for you and all your help to UO over the years. I never met a companion, but it sounds like a great part of the game. Also part of what makes this game different from others. The whole community can be involved.
     
  20. Aboo

    Aboo Guest

    I hope you get this straightened out. It's so sad that all the extras we used to experience (Counselors, Companions, ets.) have been taken from us (I am not pointing the finger at EA for this). I loved being a counselor. I loved it when I needed someone and a counselor showed up. I loved the Companions helping the newbies.

    For your years of true and loyal help to UO you deserve sooooo much better than this. Take the advice of those who suggested e-mailing Jeremy. She has always tried to help those she could and please let us know how it turns out. We rooting for you!
     
  21. BartofCats

    BartofCats Guest

    you know... after reading this story, i feel for the OP dont get me wrong... but it just goes to show you that our GM service people need to be trained more in the uses, features and abilities of the game. Not just the 2D but the KR client too.

    Another thread stated that theres a feature in KR about naming pets that the GM "didnt know about" and now we have this thread. Makes me feel confident about paging a GM when i know that after reading something like this thread, that i too may get served by a nobody who knows nothing about this game. I can hear it now, "I cannot help thee with that... do you want fries with that?"
     
  22. That is sad! My daughter's main tamer is/was also a "Normal" companion, and like you, also helped new players in Haven and took many a call using her companion powers, even after the robed one were taken away she continue to help "Young" players. She even met a GM on a 'young call' and nothing was said about her tamer being in a "young" only dungeon.

    Today due to real life and her children she does not play and I hold her account for her as her six charactors are very helpful to our needs in game. Her tamer is a peace tamer and we use it to help peace the hard tames, but we have stop using her companion pwers a long time ago, since they were a part of my daughter's period in game.
     
  23. Loqucious

    Loqucious Guest

    Sorry for your problems Warick. Unfortunately this is the state of service with EA and UO. Pathetic.
     
  24. WildStar

    WildStar UO Baja News Reporter
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    Warick

    I used to be one of those robed Senior Companions. Above us were the Arch Companions. That character was on the same account as my regular companion - not a free EA account. The only rule was that you couldn't be a Senior Companion on a shard that you played on regularly.

    WildStar, the Former Senior Companion Jazzmine Lee on Catskills.
     
  25. Lord Kynd

    Lord Kynd Guest

    i wish they would bring that stuff back, without any compensation at all.
    it was very enjoyable to be helping people back then.
     
  26. Dol'Gorath

    Dol'Gorath Grand Inquisitor
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    I am sorry to hear this. But knowing both the current state of the in-game support staff as well as the player base of UO this is not surprising. I too am a Companion, I still have my companion character from back in the day too. I loved porting to new players and helping them find UO more enjoyable. Sure people say you don't need powers to help new players, but in some cases I have stumbled upon newbies far from town and alone in the wilderness struggling to learn the game. Oftentimes I have teleported to a newbie [A REAL new player, not just new account] and they were out struggling to fight a monster, or learning to harvest skills. I would patiently stay with them for an hour or even more and explain to them everything they needed to know, I would not leave until they told me they were ready to go on their own. I often got a great feeling out of such calls, and they were even more enjoyable to me than playing the game. I loved volunteering in those days, along with my senior companion, counselor, and seer counterparts. Often I even got to hangout with GM's in haven.

    Sadly times have changed. The last few times I have even tried to help a newbie with calls people paged on me. Thankfully those times some of the older school GM's were still around and they overlooked it and did nothing because I was, afterall, doing what I was empowered to do, using my powers for the betterment of a new player, as an ambassador of UO, and helping to improve the image of the in-game staff.

    If I were to help someone now, I am sure the above would happen to me, some uptight player would page on me and I'd end up jailed for simply wanting to help a new player out.
    We were allowed to remain as volunteers because Companions never had to work a set schedule like Counselors [6 hours a week] or Seers [2 events a week]. In the past even when Companion Witch Hunts have happened on stratics, the community and dev team have sided with us, and allowed us to continue to exist. If truly we were bad for the game the GM's would simply be asked to find every single one of us and deflag us [Which is not hard because they can simply use the =LV [list volunteer] command and find us.

    I feel sad you were jailed for helping, even mroe so the damn GM simply did not deflag you, but instead chose to leave your character jailed. That is simply unacceptable. As was said in this post, send Jeremy an E-mail and she should hopefully be able to free you character.

    We chose to volunteer years ago for the betterment of UO, it's sad when the day comes that we're prosecuted for doing the very thing we signed up to do in the first place.
     
  27. Crysta

    Crysta Babbling Loonie
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    Actually i'm going to guess they jailed you because a while back players were abusing the companion powers to get powerscrolls out of Fel dungeons and people were complaining like mad. I agree it isn't right to have left you in there for so long when they said you would be out quickly, but at the very least I can tell you WHY it was done.
     
  28. NuSair

    NuSair Babbling Loonie
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    Actually, I am more disturbed by the fact that after they ended the program that players still had their powers.

    As should the people in management, then again, who knows if they even care.

    Aside from that, while I am probably in the very small minority, I think that the whole companion/seer/event stuff was one of the worst things ever for UO.
     
  29. Crysta

    Crysta Babbling Loonie
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    Wellthe only "powers" they had were to be able to teleport to any new player recognized by the system, or to teleport back to Haven. Was less possibility for abuse at the time for that kind of "power" compared to the others that were fully removed.
     
  30. Leana Sidhe

    Leana Sidhe Guest

    This has been going on for a month? That's terrible! Is EA going to refund your monthly payment?
    Shame on someone who left you in there for so long!!!!!!
     
  31. Rogal

    Rogal Slightly Crazed
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    I remember you, you showed up in Dr Cyanide's house even though it was set to private.
    I was quite surprised by you popping up, as we discussed, lol. I thought they'd brought it back full time but alas they didn't :(
    The thing is EA removed the volunteer program and you're still using the powers. Naturally they're going to have a fit.

    I think they should let you go, sans your powers or something. Keeping you in jail this long is not right.
     
  32. Raina

    Raina Journeyman
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    Wow! That sucks, but thanks so much for the warning! I do.. well did the same thing pretty much on occasion after everyone else got removed, I'll be sure not to even consider helping anyone anymore. That's... so sad *frowns*

    ~Rai
     
  33. Mama Faith

    Mama Faith Sage
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    Viper, I think that Warick said he was a Normal Companion. According to WildStar's post, it was the Senior Companions who couldn't volunteer on the same shard that they played regularly. Even if I did get this wrong, I think it comes down to them telling Warick that they'd take care of this quickly. They didn't do as promised and they need to get it done. I'd say that we all agree on that.

    [​IMG]
     
  34. Raina

    Raina Journeyman
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    That's most certainly not true, nor was it ever recommended. Companions were MEANT to be one of your main characters on a shard. This is of course different from Counselors, Seers, or any of the Senior companions+. Normal companions though were requested (at least when I signed on) to use your main character, so that you could best help out the new players and you'd be available to respond to the new player login messages if you were available.

    In fact *rummages* The EXACT Requirements were as follows:

    Under Choosing your Companion character in the companion manual it simply states you cannot be a murderer, or have a name of questionable good taste. It also highly recommends against using those involved in Chaos/Order guilds. That's it, no more, nothing else.


    ~Rai
     
  35. Mama Faith

    Mama Faith Sage
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    *LOL* I will too. :thumbsup: And in the meantime, I'll wait for a post saying that he is freeeeeeee! :cheerleader:

    [​IMG]
     
  36. Jahira-Tor

    Jahira-Tor Lore Master
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    Goos luck. Hope it works out.
     
  37. Sheridan

    Sheridan Guest

    Have you emailed Jeremy about this situation yet?
     
  38. Fink

    Fink Guest

    Unfortunately that means the system's working as intended.

    The customer support they're using is on the 'quantity process' model. As long as the numbers get crunched down to zero, they're winning. Whether via quickie canned responses or people just no longer bothering with paging in the first place, whatever reduces the numbers in the queue to nil is quantified as good customer service. Sad thing is it's not an approach unique to EA, it's everywhere. One of my characters has a list of helpful GMs in his profile, that list stopped growing around 4+ years ago.

    Once or twice you get a GM who gives a damn. I pity them; they must see these threads and despair. :(
     
  39. Hunters Moon

    Hunters Moon Guest

    GM: "Blah blah blah....we are sorry but we can't(won't) help you with your problem. Please send a bug report to....blah blah blah"
     
  40. Jahira-Tor

    Jahira-Tor Lore Master
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    Thats so true. My first GM experience was about 4 years ago, I had only been in the game a few months and had just baught myself a ethy horse. Ofcourse when i clicked it it didnt work, but i didnt get any message on screen saying i needed to wait so-and-so months before i could. I paged a GM, Sparkles turned up, who not only patiently explained what was going on, she then spent about 5 mins with me to help me figure out why no messages were turning up on my screen. When we were done she asked if there was anything else she could help me with and left.

    Sparkles dissapeered some time back. She was great
     
  41. Tabbitha

    Tabbitha Guest

    I am not going to comment on wether OP did/did not break Companion rules,as I have no idea.

    However no matter what wrong was done,the follow up action has not been carried out.

    The OP was told the character would returned,and that is what should happen.

    There has been no notification,as far as we know, saying he will be jailed for xxx amount of days.

    Therefore the character should not be in the jail and should be returned to the game.
     
  42. Skylark SP

    Skylark SP Available Storage: 0
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    Seriously...I assume you are paying for the account all this time in jail because you have a house somewhere?

    When (hopefully soon) it gets straightened out, it is reasonable for you to expect a credit or game time code offered for the time since you were jailed and have been paying but unable to play. :mad:

    -Skylark
     
  43. Mankind

    Mankind Guest

    You weren't supposed to continue to have these powers. Why is everyone in this thread thinking you were, and that this is ok?
     
  44. galefan2004

    galefan2004 Guest

    Indefinate periods for jail time seems like a stupid concept to me. They need to just let you out. If you are still willing to put up with the same old crap from EA and still pay for your account after this then they should reward you for the time you had to waste also. I think a free month of game time sounds about right.
     
  45. Lord Hawke

    Lord Hawke Guest

    In all fairness this is a very old problem that should have been addressed years ago by past dev teams. I suspect this thread has been seen by Jeremy or one of the others by now, and I would hope they have moved this issue to the top of the "needs fixed quickly" list. The companion program was a wonderful thing, but that era is long gone. The "powers" should have been removed long ago.
    I hope they set you "free" soon!
     
  46. MalagAste

    MalagAste Belaern d'Zhaunil
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    Everyone is thinking that's ok because everyone who posted either was a companion or remembers how very kind, helpful and what a great benifit the Companions and councilors were.... And most of us believe it was wrong and a shame to ever end the program....

    This all certainly helps to solidify my belief that EA games is doing everything in their power to see that UO fails and is driven into the red... Giving special benifits to the Japanese players..... (they do have special programs go look at a Japanese shard and tell me what you notice almost immediatly).... Lack of good customer service..... GM's that don't even know the basics of the game and likely have never ever played an online game in their life!..... The lack of any assistance outside of game if you call the Tech support line.... Good luck talking to an actual person .... and even more luck speaking to someone you can understand in plain english..... Top that off with the fact that half the time the account service functions on uo.com account page aren't working......

    I've played UO for 8 years... I can tell you this..... the help button on the log in page of my UO has NEVER worked.... it's as useless as the background..... not ever worked in the 8 years I've played.... no matter how many times I've reinstalled UO..... no matter how many new disks I've installed.... never.

    Doing away with the Seer program, the Councilors, the Companions. Not to mention the birth and quick death of the EM program... lousy customer support..... rampant cheating and worst of all duping..... hacks and hackers that go unpunished.... lack of support for those who have been hacked.... all are the proof in the pudding that EA games wants UO to die... an agonizing death.... yet it's folk like Warick who keep the community alive... those who like myself take time out of their day and game experiance to help those in need and the young, so that they too can enjoy the game...

    Does any of it have to do with some folk being ungreatful whinners .... maybe.... does any of it have to do with the sue happy america...... likely... does any of it have to do with corruption... likely.... it is the nature of man to be corruptable.... hence his being removed from the garden of eden.... But the irony of that is it's that same removal and faith and virtue that makes us what we are... the Game is Based on Virtue.... obviously many of us fail at being the avatar and learning and using true virtue. Perhaps that's why EA controls UO now.... Perhaps that's why Garriot gave up on it.


    [​IMG]
    Please click the egg/hatchling and help my dragons grow.

    Philosophy is fun.
     
  47. Raina

    Raina Journeyman
    Stratics Veteran

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    Companions haven't ever really had a choice in the matter. When EA Abolished all the volunteer programs, it didn't abolish the Companions really (At least they never, globally took away Companion powers). So every Companion still has/had their Companion abilities. Unless they've quit UO, Transferred the Character or randomly been tagged, they all still have them.

    He didn't do anything at all wrong is why it's okay. It's not like EA took away all companion powers and they missed him, they didn't. They didn't take away anyone's companion abilities. So you can't blame him, or anyone else who was a companion, for still having what was never taken away *shrugs* So whether he is supposed to have them or not, isn't even really his call, it's EA's, and they've let companions keep them.

    ~Rai
     
  48. Spellbound

    Spellbound Lore Keeper
    Stratics Veteran

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    Can EAMythic please explain why these powers which were deleted from higher ranking players still remain with some unidentifiable players, especially if these powers can be abused? Depending on what special abilities companions still have, it seems like the designers left a big hole open for exploits. Speculating only with no incrimination of the OP, but why did you go into a private house? Do you have the option to stealth mode into any setting in game? I can think of some pretty nasty scenarios with that kind of power. Wholeheartedly agree if no other indiscretions occurred, that Warick should be unflagged, released, and compensated for unjust jail time. Also believe it would be wise for EAMythic to come up with a fix for where and when these powers can be utilized if they are to remain on easily identifiable players.
     
  49. Ryix

    Ryix Guest

    lol sorry to laugh at your plight, and i genuinely hope you get your char back. But it shows the sorry state of affairs our support staff are in.
    They jailed you for their own ignorance?! lol Man, i say make the guy a gm since he clearly knows more about the game and its history than the one that jailed him.
     
  50. Landicine

    Landicine Seasoned Veteran
    Stratics Veteran

    Joined:
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    I have a friend who was a companion on his main character on his main shard and at no point did he lose those powers. He stopped playing years ago, but I bet if his account was reactivated, those powers would still be there. It sounds like this is another example of some detail slipping through the cracks.

    I know my counselor was actually derobed a year or two after the program ended. I stopped being a counselor earlier, but no one bothered to remove the blue robe until my wife logged in for christmas gifts a good bit later. I had a similar problem with a troubadour pirate with crazy NPC level skills that I forgot about. In neither case did fixing the problems take more than an hour. I think someone should consider looking into the bigger problem and either removing these companion powers completely or figuring out what to do about them.
     
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