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Returning players, Soulstones and how the Developers could help them ?

Discussion in 'UHall' started by popps, Jul 27, 2011.

  1. popps

    popps Always Present
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    I often read posts from returning players who, after years, seek their old Soulstones with their skills on which went lost when their home went IDOC.

    It is difficult to find and retrieve them through Forums or even in Chat since not necessarily one might be logged at the same time of whomever found the soulstone at an IDOC.

    Now, what if the Developers wrote some routine code to be run, during maintainance, to locate all soulstones on each shard hosted in Houses belonging to accounts other than the original Soulstone owner, and then posted the results of the search in a database that returning players could browse to see if their Soulstones are still around and where it might be and who has it ?

    This way, returning players might know for sure whether their Soulstone(s) is(are) still around and precisely where to go to to try to retrieve it(them).

    Not sure how much coding work it would be, but it would be a nice gesture towards returning players, IMHO.
     
  2. Flutter

    Flutter Always Present
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    I disagree. People should pay for their accounts to keep their stuff.
    It's not hard to toss important things like Soul Stones into the bank if your account is going to go inactive.
    It's enough that they have character names on them now.
     
  3. popps

    popps Always Present
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    Well, yes and no. I mean, the game wants to have players returning to it as it means more revenues, and these players already had their losses when their house fall and all those items are gone for good.

    Allowing to let them more easily retrieve their Soulstones, would at least be a small token of appreciation for their coming back to the game.

    A nice gesture, if you will, to show that they are indeed welcome back to the game.
     
  4. Flutter

    Flutter Always Present
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    It's really not hard to work skills up in the game now. With blue and pink scrolls most skills take less than two days.
     
  5. BBWolf

    BBWolf Journeyman
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    Hi, What server are you on Popps? On Pacific, I was in the process of building a dedicated house for all the players who lost their Soulstones, called a "Soulstone Graveyard." Unfortunately after several months waiting it was endless wait for players to return... But the thought of a graveyard makes it seem very sad to me...Hopefully i would find a nice location to build it again....Ask around, you might get lucky...
     
  6. Viper09

    Viper09 Grand Poobah
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    Tis why whenever someone quits it is always advisable to keep the things you never want to lose in your backpack or bank even if you think you'll never return. Soulstones being one of those key items you don't want in an IDOC.
     
  7. popps

    popps Always Present
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    Thanks, but I do not have this problem, personally, I have been away from the game from time to time but I always left my subscription running so no house decaying for me.

    I just thought it since I see from time to time returning players asking about them, both on Forums or in Chat and thought that perhaps such a thing could be a kind gesture towards them to show that they are indeed welcome back to the game.......
     
  8. Amber Witch

    Amber Witch Slightly Crazed
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    Some of the shard forums have a sticky thread for lost/found soulstones in hope that a returning player will see it and claim theirs.
     
  9. You quit you lose. Dang.

    Stop wasting our time.
     
  10. Woodsman

    Woodsman Guest

    If they were somewhat intelligent about quitting, they put all of their valuables in the bank or their backpacks and pulled the houses and got the money back. Just on one account, it would be easy to bank several hundred valuables plus another several hundred valuables in character backpacks.

    If they left in a huff and just let their houses and everything in them go IDOC, well too bad.
     
  11. Plant Elemental

    Plant Elemental Journeyman
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    When I quit 3 years ago, I thought I was never coming back. I left everything in my castle, including all 8 of my full soulstones and about 20 soulstone fragments.

    When I came back to the game, I tried everything I could to hunt them down and find them to no avail.

    I have nobody to blame but myself. I could have easilly banked them or just kept my subscription going. Seriously, if I can't afford $10 a month, then I have some major issues that need to get worked out.

    In the end, my being dumb caost me a veteran reward choice, two Legacy tokens ($20) and a full soulstone token purchased off of a player vendor (15 mil). I take my punishment like a man.
     
  12. Lorddog

    Lorddog Crazed Zealot
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    i requested this long ago - a much better solution.

    at brit bank there is a container. you can put soul stones into it.
    they stay there forever until retrieved.
    when you open the container to look into it you only see soul stones tied to your account. so only you can take them out.

    lorddog
     
  13. Tina Small

    Tina Small Stratics Legend
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    Anyone could drop soulstones and fragments into it, even ones not owned by their own account (e.g., "found" soulstones from IDOCs)? If yes, I really like this idea.

    :thumbup1:
     
  14. Lady Storm

    Lady Storm Crazed Zealot
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    I have to agree with Planet, many soulstones are lost every day in uo.

    While the dev did put an effort into labling the stones as to owners, You have to use them to get hte tag to show... that didnt help lable the hundreds out there for others to see who exactly owned them.

    I personaly have over 50 full stones on about a dozzen shards almost all untaged as to who own's them. And no I wont just hand them to someone as many I purchased for deco willy nilly in the hopes the owner will show up one day.

    Flutter is right skills are easy to rebuild with a minamal amount of time put to it. Reward stones can be gotten again in a short time as accounts begin to age, remember you get 2 per year choices so a new stone is not far off.

    Pops while it is nice that we are getting players back and we all need to help our fellow returning players. I think it would be far better to help them in other ways then the "Great Soulstone Hunt". Unlike WoW, UO does not limit players to name their characters 1 unique name and not let others copy... so the stone hunt could end up being a great big mess.

    I made a suguestion for the Dev an idea of a "Vet Reward" exchange program where any player could turn in to an npc vendor set up for this, any and all vet rewards including soulstones (this included the non vet reward soulstones too) to get a second choice of a reward they would prefer. This would clean up many players drowning in dye tubs, robes, statues, and the like and let them pick new items from the list. Of course this turn in would be on a ratio of lvl of the reward as you wouldnt be able to turn in say a 1st year item for a 12th but if you think about it, how many of us have a few dozzen vet rewards collecting dust? You would have to pick the new item at turn in and it would not add reward picks to your vet reward menu. This would be a strait forward exchange.
    I for one would vote for this as it would then give returning vets the chance to exchange stuff you can buy, or own for what is needed. There are a few down falls as many would see $$ for stuff they could trade for but in the long run the exchnage rate for those higher vet reward items would take a bigger chunk of lower items to get... so it would work out in the end to do two things .... reduce high end clutter, and help out returning vets possibly getting the needed reward they lost over the years.
    *There is one way to stop the possible run away idea of others in a get rich scheme ... make the new item from the trade in Account bound. This would simply make more sense in the long run.
     
  15. LordDrago

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    i kinda like the idea of the bank chest to drop them in if anything...a global locator seems a bit big brotherish to me :)


    On the personal side, I lost several soulstones years ago when my house went idoc. I was paying month to month via timecodes, and was deployed rather suddenly, and the last thing going through my mind when alerted was UO (OK, continue the alert chain, grab deployment bag, get to Company HQ and ensure weapons issue, supply issue, loadout plan are all on track....damn, I know I am forgetting something lol). I didn't think about it until way too late. Got back, restarted account, and my house and everything in it was poofed.

    Now, my soulstones and anything else hard to replace are in my bankboxes, and i have switched to paying 6 months and via credit card.
     
  16. Lady CaT

    Lady CaT Seasoned Veteran
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    While certainly it might be a nice idea. I'm sure allocating coding time and game design features to people who choose not to play/pay subscription fees is probably very low on the list of things to do. Especially when there is a whole host of other things to be coded for enhancing the game for actual playing/paying subscribers.
     
  17. Charin

    Charin Journeyman

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    Hell my problem is I kept my soulstones.. put them in the bank. When I returned all of them had lost their User ID code and now wont work. Got confirmation from second level Tech as its a known issue but you got to get a game master to help... guess how likely that is... I have been trying almost daily for 2 months since Level 2 Tech told me to page a gm.
     
  18. THP

    THP Stratics Legend
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    Hasent every shard got a player run soulstone graveyard??? like europa.....were idocers, etc, drop them off for people to find in the future???? weird if u dont??
     
  19. Deb

    Deb Guest

    :thumbup1: This
     
  20. No! popps ... Just Yes, they should pay for retention of items
    no "and no" ... NO!

    >You even said that< (in the same sentence!)
    these players already had their losses when their house fall and all those items are gone for good.

    It >should NOT< be a case of:
    Allowing to let them more easily retrieve their Soulstones,

    It >should remain< AS IT IS .... EARN/BUY any soulstones they want ...
    >REBUILD< their account
    PLAY the game ... and reap the consequences of their turns based on their actions and inactions and knowledge and application and ignorance/ assumptions.

    Returning vets >should only< be treated as well as fresh start noobies
    buy your ticket, get in line and work your way up.

    /simple:party:
     
  21. popps

    popps Always Present
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    Well, yes and no.

    I am seeing more and more returning players, perhaps after years of being away. Also, I think, for 10 new players that get into UO I think that the most part are returning players rather than people who never played Ultima Online before.

    So, doing "something" to show returning players that they are welcome back to the game could be a nice gesture, I think. Let's call it a public relations cost ?

    I mean, sure, spending time to code such a thing is a cost, but then, having players return to UO is a revenue so, perhaps, it might be worth it ?

    I already imagine, a player re-activates his/her subscription after years been away, they log back into the game and the very first gump they receive is a Welcome Back message advicing of this Soulstone retrieval service for returning player who might have lost them when their House went IDOC back then......

    To those who argue about the relative ease to train up skills these days, well to a point. The issue with Soulstones is not only about retrieving skills to "skip" on training, Soulstones are also an asset. They cost in game around 15 millions or they need to "give up" Veteran picks for them which could be more wisely invested, especially for a multi year Vet Account, in rewards for later years. Not to mention, that buying them on UOGAmecodes has a real money cost......

    So, being able to retrieve one's own Soulstones might not only come handy for the skills, but also for the worth of the Soulstones themselves....

    If I was one of these returning players I'd certainly see the welcome and the news with favour. As I said, a nice gesture.
     
  22. popps

    popps Always Present
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    Send a Stratics Personal Message to a Developer, for example Mesanna, they are very nice and helpfull and will help you out if they can.

    When I could not locate my ship, I also for 5 days paged a Game Master for the entire time renewing my page daily. Needless to say, no response from a Game Master.
    I also PMed Mesanna and she kindly responded me offering her help to find my ship. By then, I had found it on my own by sheer luck so her help was no longer necessary but all of the Developers are very helpfull so, do not give up hope. Try PMing any of the Developers who post here on Stratics and good luck !!
     
  23. popps

    popps Always Present
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    Well, it is a common practise in business that when a Company wants to enlarge its customer base, they offer promotions, freebies, whatever so as to get more customers onboard.

    I see any "helping hand" offered in regards to Soulstones to returning players just that, a promotion offered at a cost with the goal to enlarge one's own customer base.

    Perhaps more players could be willing to come back to the game but the thought to have to start totally from scratch, as you say, as if they were a new players, might be a deterrant to some.

    So, letting them reactivate their old account, retrieve their old Soulstones and blah blah, might in the end work in favour of having more players want to come back to Ultima Online thus increasing more the overall revenues of the game and shards populations.........
     
  24. No popps ...

    Letting them re-activate an old account >should be< ENOUGH of an incentive
    Just that and no more.

    That alone gives them a greater advantage over a noob account ...
    Accumulated time OF the account (while active) is still there
    Red Soulstone is a 12 - 23 Month "reward"

    Oh but what if they used up all their rewards?
    Ha! When an account has been active for 72 months you will receive two vet reward choices (instead of the normal one choice per year), and another two for each additional 12 months in which the account remains active.

    I thought from reading you that "level playing field" was one of your "principles"
    apparently I have misread you.

    MY "level playing field" is that if you get out of line >for whatever reason<
    you want back in?
    Get in line like everyone else.
    Start afresh with a 700 skill cap ( no "retained" 4yr scroll bump to 720 )
    receive the same +5 stat bump as every other noobie ...
    Back to the "grind" to re-scroll your templates to 6x120 @ 250-5 stats

    You might NEED to get that training ground time ...
    gathering noobies to >help you< take down a champion
    (certainly gonna need to relearn other aspects, weapons, armor)
    Guilding with other "returning vets"

    :thumbsup: call that "community skills building"
    RE BUILDING your rep, your guild ... YOUR SHARD ...

    quite easy for me to say that (for whatever reason)
    Your absence is what CAUSED the decline

    Roll up your sleeves and HELP clean up that mess.

    :gee:

    Okay, fine!
    ACCOUNT storage insurance, paid in advance for a limited term, cash in advance, with no guarantee beyond "possible shard closings" ... NO pro-rated refunds,
    ya pays yo monies and yo take YOUR "chances".

    :danceb:
     
  25. rareitem

    rareitem Journeyman
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    I have a lot of soulstones from Idocs Id like to return to their owners if they come back , but its hard to contact.

    Why dont we make a special thread called Found Soulstones, a special thread only to place in contact people seeking for their Soulstones and people who found soulstones?

    So people can have a chance to find them.
     
  26. Lady Storm

    Lady Storm Crazed Zealot
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    That might be pretty hard as some of us who have moved shards took them with us in the move... Rareitem.

    Quote pops:
    Now, what if the Developers wrote some routine code to be run, during maintainance, to locate all soulstones on each shard hosted in Houses belonging to accounts other than the original Soulstone owner, and then posted the results of the search in a database that returning players could browse to see if their Soulstones are still around and where it might be and who has it ?

    One BIG draw back on this one... actualy 2.
    First is that could be considered invasion of privacy to that player who ultimatly has the stone.(it might have changed hands a few times from its finding date)
    Secondly there is no way any Dev outside of them physicaly taking a stand on ownership rights take the stone from its present owning player if that player goes that far to keep it. I mean to say there are some players who dotn give a fig about a returning vet and could care less if they want their stone back and would grief the returning player by keeping it.

    My idea is a more sounder base but then again there is that fear that some player out there would profit from it.
     
  27. Zyon Rockler

    Zyon Rockler Guest

    What they should do is make it so you can eat the Soulstone then when you open up your skill sheet you see a small stone. If you want to you can click on a skill and then add it to the Soulstone. The Soulstone would show up empty at the bottom of the screen in the skill menu if it was empty. As you use the Soulstones they appear next to the skill.

    To change the skill you would use a Soulstone fragment. So, instead of working out of a chest, the Soulstone would be part of that character.

    You could remove the Soulstone along with the skill by using a Soulstone Fragment and then you would be able to change it to another one of your characters along with the skill.

    This way your crafter would be able to have the Soulstone within his skill sheet. So, he could change them without having to lose the skill.

    Even without having to use a Soulstone Fragment would be fine in my opinion. This way you could work all of the skills as long as you had enough Soulstones but still be able to keep the cap of 720 active skill but possibly a few thousand inactive on each character.

    I really think the skill should have a way to stay on the character and there should be a way to work the skill and not have to lose it.

    Then they could make Soulstones more available so people could max out their character. As they add more and more skills, there are skills I would like to try but have not, simply because I don't have the room, like throwing or mystic.

    I also think something like this would keep people active longer because they would have more skills to train. The way it is now each character caps at 720 and if you have a couple hundred on Soulstones, you basically stay at that same range of skill. Like you could total up what all of your characters plus Soulstones have in skill points.

    By allowing you to eat the Soulstone and have it become part of your skill sheet people would invest more time building skills.
     
  28. MalagAste

    MalagAste Belaern d'Zhaunil
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    Well to be totally honest...

    Half of those who return to UO do so on new accounts. Why? Because they can't even remember what their old account names/passwords or emails were.

    Those that DO remember those things often have the important stuff. The few who return and want to "reclaim" what they lost... well they ought to hope they have friends kind enough to save their stuff otherwise.. well... too bad so sad IMO.

    I agree with others the DEV's have more important things to do than to locate soulstones for folk too lazy to secure their stuff.

    Now that said had they done what I told them to long time ago folk would have an easy way to find their stones.

    I said that soulstones should highlight yellow or something when you put your cursor over stones that are YOURS. This way if folk are selling stones or have stones in a warehouse of sorts... folk could just cursor over them and see if theirs are there VERY quickly. But instead they had it put the char name of the last person to use it on them.

    Dumb idea.... you know how many Vincents there are in UO? A lot.

    What about folk who create characters all with the same name? Kinda stinks for them.

    Anyway that's my 2cents.
     
  29. Wow ...

    I guess ya'll don't know whom you are dancing with ... it is popps ... by the way,
    Or what game you are in "discussion of" ... Ultima Online ... by the by.

    Perhaps its a case of forgetting one of the earliest lessons learned about UO ...
    If you can pick it up ... it is YOURS
    Which is (I'll remind you) one of the earliest Sandbox rules of social LAW ever documented:

    Finders Keepers, Losers Weepers.

    There is Already a "hard stand" re: items of property
    Bless Deed for one
    and specifically Lost item most related to this thread for another.

    Now then ...
    Soulstones are account bound ... yes?
    Lost account items(lost item above) >were agreed to NOT be the responsibility of GM's< To "look for" ... yes?
    well yeah fayled ... popps is just/only/merely asking for a bit of code (aka a script) to allow US to do for OURselfs ...
    FINE!
    Do for YOURSELVES and wander the shards with an eye out for LOST items (mindful that: they may have already been disposed of, trashcan, mongbat corpse, etc.)
    when(>IF<) found ... gonna have to LOWER yourselves to do a little ROLE PLAY and INTERACT with another human being ...
    which >apparently< has changed since I joined up many a year ago ...
    Quotes "Renaissance Play Guide" *ahem*

    (page 6 for those whom care to check my transcription)

    I say >apparently< has changed since I joined up many a year ago ...
    Because >apparently< NONE of popps suggestions are For the General good ... oh yes ... some MAY benefit from suggested changes, he certainly has a knack for presenting it as so; maybe, perhaps, is it unreasonable to think, yes and no(when only one is actually true), IMHO ... How often the group? I mean >specifically< the group, the game, the "wider world of UO"?

    Oh, as I noted, he certainly has a knack for presenting an "unselfish" demeanor ... this thread for instance
    Returning players, Soulstones and how the Developers could help them ?
    *nods*
    those ARE groups, "others" to tend his needs/wants, and to be "convinced" that his is a "better way".
    Fair enough ... he IS human ... he HAS the right to his opinion and its expression and to defend his point of view, HOWEVER "singular" it maybe ...
    again
    HOWEVER "singular" it maybe ...

    MOST everything from popps passive aggressive requests
    Is towards >Single, solo< design aspects
    NOT for, to improve, enhance: MMORPGs

    I could be wrong, I challenge ALL to bring forth evidence to the contrary.

    Till then I shall oppose his "singular" perspective ... I shall defend the premise of MMOs
    That what is lost may be wept over. But no tears, no loss ever? ... is not even Virtually realistic.
    That what is found may be bargained for. Negotiation is an ART, a high level social construct. Bashing their head in is rather barbaric, calling a "cop/elder" is expecting "others" to defend you ... not being able to wheedle a deal? suck it up and move on.

    One last tangential supporting point:
    One niggling little detail he left out of that cunningly writ wail ...
    he "bumped into" his long lost ship ... by using an ingame available mechanic !!! to wit: "start tracking"(note: Updated by Petra Fyde, October 2010)
    Oh My! ...
    >There being an available ingame mechanic< ... GUESS what a game master should have properly said?
    uhhuh!
    (ikeed! ikeed!)
    True enough(I checked, in relation to the current situation) There is NO >Specific< guidance re: the New Ships IN the UO KB ...
    >I< even posted the old info about keys and paging a GM ... but oh woes! he wasn't even getting a *nod* of acknowledgement from the GMs(I even had to "post note to:self " as to why NOT TO "guess" why he had no response ... that would have been trolling ... tsk tsk.*wink*)
    My "point is" ... he finally received assistance from a knowledgeable PLAYER ... without requesting any shard search parties (though I did mention I was out looking, even advertised his plight to others as a challenge for aid)

    hooks thumb towards the Renaissance quote :thumbsup:
    benefits which will eventually help you reach goals you may set for yourself.
    :scholar: AND
    His dollar >buys< no "greater access" than any other, than that what is paid by you and or I ... which is (yet another) "overlooked" agreed to condition of THIS MMO to wit:

    YOU EXPRESSLY AGREE THAT USE OF THE SERVICE AND THE SOFTWARE IS AT YOUR SOLE RISK. THE SERVICE AND THE SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED ON AN "AS IS," "AS AVAILABLE" BASIS

    I am the Glorious Lord and GreatGrandmaster Fayled Dhreams

    kneel and weep before my Glory !!! :danceb: doh dah diddle-e-ya alla day ... hummmmmmmmmmmm
     
  30. Gidge

    Gidge Sage
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    I came back after being gone and I had to work a skill all over again. I would do it. An account I have that has an alchemist on it is off right now. So I worked it up on another character. It really was not that hard. I recently polished off begging and that was easy enough. Raising skills is part of the game. I understand your desire to do anything possible to get people to come back, and stay back. In my thinking the people who do come back have a passion for the game you don't need to woo them. If you need to lure people back with shinys (shiny shiny.... pretty pretty!) Then they will continue to expect shinys like many do.

    I have lost a full soulstone (my own stupidity) But I miss the soulstone itself, not the skill it had.

    And I have had a friend lose so many skills in the process of using them. I literally mean 4 during transfers and lost 8 stones. (I just verified).

    So should he gets his back too? Many things in UO are a slippery slope.
     
  31. Gowron

    Gowron Guest

    Bad idea, simply in the sense that there are many other issues requiring resolution and this would require more effort to achieve a very minor effect. Thumbs down on this idea.
     
  32. THP

    THP Stratics Legend
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    bump...surely every shards as a public place/house/graveyard to drop other peoples lost soulstones off......lordy ....u joke me not yes??
     
  33. Thrakkar

    Thrakkar Slightly Crazed
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    This makes me wonder. How many returning players per month does UO have? Is the player base growing rapidly?