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EXCELSIOR DAILY

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Re: EXCELSIOR DAILY

Postby +Colibri on Tue May 19, 2015 8:34 pm

Topsites Voting Rules.

As most of you already know, if you vote on the various topsites where Excelsior is listed, you can also collect a reward from the Voting Reward Stone. But just to have all the things gathered in one place, here are final rules for voting. The system may eventually be changed, but I've already spent too much time on this so I will leave it as is until the end of the year.

1. To vote, go to our frontpage (http://www.uoex.net) and at the bottom you will see "Vote for the shard" and then 5 big links. You have to vote on all 5 of these topsites to qualify for the reward. (* used to be 4, now it's 5. In the future it might go back to 4, or even up to 6).
2. There are numerous other sites at the bottom of the page: you do *not* have to vote on any of these to qualify for the reward. But if you have a spare moment, feel free to pick one or two at random and vote there too. (I see that with the recent announcement, some have probably started voting there as well, but just to make sure we're all pulling the same weight: you don't have to.)
3. Go to the Town Center and collect your reward for voting.
You can do this every 24 hours. This actually means you should vote a few minutes later than previous day for optimum results.

- Rewards are progressive: your first voting cycle will fetch you 5000gp. Then +2k every further attempt, making it 49k on your 22nd vote, and then 1ED on 23rd and further vote reward.
- Rewards decay: if you don't vote for more than 2 weeks, the reward starts decaying: 1 step every 24 hours. So after 14+22 days the reward is again 5k gold. This also means that as long as you do one vote every 2 weeks, you stay at max reward level.
(Some players don't claim their rewards for days or weeks.. the stone goes by the voting time, not time of reward claim, but still please claim your rewards about every month, as data older than 3 months is removed).

Now for the small print:
As we know the reward is based on GTop100's site feedback - they send information back to our server about whether a vote was successful, or if unsuccessful also how long you have to wait before voting again. If you vote only on GTop100, you will still able to claim the reward - but! As mentioned in the previous post here, I've recently been able to collect extra info about who really votes as intended. About every month or two, I will collate that data and see who has been voting just to collect the reward: reward progression of those players will be reset to 0, and possibly given a penalty where a certain amount of votes in the future will only yield a very small (1000gp) reward.

Frequently asked question - Voting from more than one computer:
This is something that was asked a few times, and I've decided to go with the following formula: If you can also vote from work, it is allowed. But only one secondary computer, not a botnet :) As I will audit votes, anything under 30 rewards per month is logically legit. Those with 30-45 rewards per month I will have a little extra look at. Those with more than 45 rewards per month will likely have the excess rewards taken away.

Frequently asked question - My spouse and I can only get the one reward because we are on the same connection:
Although I've given some thought about, unfortunately, there's nothing we can do about this. The purpose of this is for votes to count on the topsites, making us rank higher. You could ask your neighbor to borrow his connection over WiFi. Or one of you can do their daily vote from work - but keep in mind, you need to connect to the game from the same computer (same IP) in order to collect the reward - and your company might not like you installing a game on your work computer.

Frequently asked question - I vote on all sites, the vote goes through, but I haven't gotten any rewards ever:
It seems that some ISPs (looks like Satellite and/or Mobile/3G/LTE) give you a different IP for web browsing (where you cast your vote) and for connecting to non-web things (connecting to the game server). To check this, type [account in the game and find your "IP Address" listed there. Then go to our frontpage http://www.uoex.net, at the bottom you will see "Your IP Address is:". If the addresses in-game and on the website are different, send a help request, we'll set you up so that you will still be able to collect your reward.

Frequently asked question - the GTop100 site tells me I have already voted, and to come back in a few hours, even though I haven't touched any of it for days:
There are known issues with Internet Explorer, so try Firefox or Chrome. Also, they have an advanced anti-cheat method with cookies, and I know of one time in the past when it stalled, the fix was a simple clearing of cookies. If you do clear cookies, I suggest you try clearing them just for that site, not all of your cookies so you don't get logged out of all things you are logged into.

Sorry for the long post :mrgreen: I initially wanted to make a quick towncrier announcement. But well this is all there is to this on the development-end. Now all that's left is the actual voting :)

Thank you all for voting - we seem to be #1 on most sites!

Related: Voting rewards discussion thread
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Re: EXCELSIOR DAILY

Postby +Colibri on Thu May 28, 2015 8:14 pm

Changes with inactive account deletion rules, house drops too.

I have just revisited an issue that has been on my ToDo for a long time, some of you may have noticed that houses haven't been dropping as much as they should have in the past months (since autumn probably). I wanted to first analyze and possibly adjust these rules to make accounts stay for longer, while houses could actually drop even sooner. There have also been a few angry emails from old players who have been wiped, and even though we have an account recovery option now, it seems completely pointless to be wiping accounts one day, and then spending a lot of time on re-making them the next year.
I was aiming to combine the following factors:
- An account that is predicted to be used again should be kept.
- Accounts should be deleted after longer inactivity than by current rules.
- Houses should drop independently of the account, possibly faster than by current rules.

Until now, houses have dropped together with the account, by the following rules:
- Less than 1 hour gametime, account is safe for 1 month after last login.
- 1-10 hours gametime, account is safe for 2 months after last login.
- 10-100 hours gametime, account is safe for 3 months after last login.
- over 100 hours - account is safe for 6 months after last login. And this is the group that most accounts fell into, since pretty much anyone who actually plays here gets to 100 hours (not just visiting and log off after a few minutes).

New Rules:
Your account will be kept safe after you last log off for the same time that you have spent online with it. But at minimum 6 months. And maximum 3 years.
For houses owned by your account, the rule is similar: after you log off, houses are kept for one half of the time you have spent online. But at minimum 3 months. And maximum 18 months.


Link to Codex page with this rule: Codex/Accounting.


Keep in mind: old rules (usually 6 months before a house or account drops) will still apply, in a transitional period - starting now and until 6 months from now. Basically, if someone logged on 2 days ago, the old rules still apply to them.

But you can expect houses to start dropping in the next few days, I will drop them gradually over the course of let's say a month.
Quick disclaimer: houses may be kept for longer than specified, if for example there is already a lot of land available, or if our playerbase drops.
Interesting fact: there are 11 players with gametime over 3 years at the moment (26280 hours online) :mrgreen: and 20 with 2-3 years.
I've been jugging misc other rules, also perhaps to keep account up for twice as much as gametime, or houses 1/2 of gametime, and so on... long story short, this seems quite optimal, logical, simple, and easy to remember.

Future additions with this topic:
- There will probably be a deed for maximum account safety - to keep your account 3 years even if you haven't been online for 1080 days (=26280 hours), for ED, probably very pricy.
- There may also be a deed to make a "safe house" - to make a house safe from dropping for the max 1 year (as is with the oldest veteran players), or even to keep it up until the account decays.
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Re: EXCELSIOR DAILY

Postby +Nyx on Fri Jul 17, 2015 2:56 pm

Due to a major exploit, the relayer unbinding stone has been removed for the foreseeable future. An announcement will be made when it is available for use again.
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Re: EXCELSIOR DAILY

Postby +Nyx on Fri Sep 11, 2015 7:04 pm

Mistvale changes:

You must now complete all of the regular armor quests before you may begin the reaper quest, then you must complete the reaper to begin the sash, and complete the sash to begin the cloak.

This is in an effort to add difficulty to this quest line without actually making the dungeons harder.

Other modifications with this update:
- all 6 armor quests have had their requirements reduced by at least 20%. Sash, reaper, and cloak quests unchanged.
- all dungeons' respawn timers have been reduced drastically
- all dungeons' quest item drop rates have been increased by roughly 20%
- claim enabled in all dungeons. Note that you can't just [claim, or it will not grab quest items, you must [claimall.
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Re: EXCELSIOR DAILY

Postby +Colibri on Wed Nov 04, 2015 5:52 pm

Teamspeak offline: I have taken our Teamspeak server offline until further notice. Every now and then there's an incident, and it takes me a while to figure out what happened, time I could be spent more constructively. I do plan for a voice chat option to be implemented, but in a different form, most probably as a direct integration in the new portal.
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Re: EXCELSIOR DAILY

Postby +Nyx on Thu Nov 12, 2015 12:04 pm

There will be a Grand Auction on Saturday, November 14th at 11:30am CST / 17:30 shard time.

Items are on display in the auction display area now.

Please note that all items will have reserve prices ranging from 1mil and up, depending on the overall value and desirability of the item.

Hope to see everyone there!

- +N
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Re: EXCELSIOR DAILY

Postby +Colibri on Wed Dec 02, 2015 5:42 pm

Our policy for serious (real-world) harassment
In regard to an issue this weekend, as well as one from august, and there were others but I don't remember the exact count or time. We have pretty much zero tolerance for real-world actual threats made towards any member of the community. There is a very big distinction between in-game and real world harassment: in-game example, releasing dragons in front of someone's house which would get you jailed and perhaps eventually banned if you continue to do it multiple times. On the other hand, knowing someone's address and bragging about how you know certain real things about a person, showing malicious intent, that's already in the realm of illegal. In such case, I would gather the evidence and permanently ban that person, end of story.

Since we're quite a big community, I expect a similar thing to happen sometime again in the future. There is of course the situation when someone might be making a joke, or a non-native english speaker repeating the various "cool" sayings that they heard in action movies, and yes that is something to consider and if it's a first-time offense it might result in just a warning or small penalty. What I'm trying to say: if you say "break a leg" you won't get banned. But to be on the safe side, don't make off-color jokes if you're unsure if the other person will get it. For someone who has a history of breaking the rules and overall being a toxic member of the community, there isn't a second chance or benefit of the doubt.


Lost items "due to a bug", or "mean staff deleted it"
There were issues with a few players constantly losing items and claiming it's a bug. Basically, items don't just vanish, there must be some action performed in order for it to go somewhere. This is nicely explained on this page: http://www.uoex.net/codex/services/recovery
Every now and then, I still like to investigate a lost item report, but not if it's the same as numerous other reports that were already investigated. And more likely if there were changes in part of the code that is related to activity someone was doing before an item vanished.
Then as a "free item recovery" is denied, I start hearing that we (staff) are removing/stealing items from player's backpacks and houses. I have investigated a few such reports, just to be sure, but it turns out all the items were misplaced or accidentally trashed. Since every such investigation takes between 30 minutes and 2 hours (could be more), I can't just check for everyone who misplaces things on a weekly basis.
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Re: EXCELSIOR DAILY

Postby +Colibri on Wed Dec 23, 2015 5:27 pm

Wishing you all a happy holiday season!

Merry Christmas, happy Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and/or Solistice.

We may follow different traditions, but we have one thing in common - we are all gamers. MMO gamers to be specific. And there's no MMO game without a server. So, wishing us all a stable server and low latency!
:mrgreen:

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Re: EXCELSIOR DAILY

Postby +Colibri on Fri Mar 04, 2016 12:11 pm

Just a few quick reminders:

The US presidential election is upon us. Right now it's still quite far away, but it will get heated. We've seen 2 elections before, and from what I remember there was drama every time. So please remember:
- Although discussing politics is not against the rules, it usually doesn't end well so it's so to say "discouraged".
- This is a place for gaming. If you want to discuss politics, there's plenty other places on the internet to discuss it.
- I hope this autumn nobody gets banned for flying off the handle because the election turned out differently from what they hoped.


It sometimes comes to my attention that in-game things (player possessions) are because I like someone or "they're my favorite". And for example, person A says that person B has special benefits, although person B actually thinks that I dislike them and then person C thinks both A & B have special benefits, or various ideas like that.
In reality, well it's silly to see that... but in any case, whoever you might think had things just given to them, got them the way anyone else could got them (in case of special stuff: at auctions - which is a public event where several people take notes on what gets sold, to prevent conspiracy theories like that).
Also someone recently emailed me with a conspiracy theory that a particular staff member probably dislikes them and took away a special item - but the item was right there in the house, but the player didn't see it. :lol:


Hmm, there was a third thing but I forgot. Well, wishing you all a happy gaming weekend!
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Re: EXCELSIOR DAILY

Postby +Colibri on Thu Mar 24, 2016 4:29 pm

Guild hues upgrade:

We've thoroughly improved the guild hue functionality, here's the scoop:
- Items dyed with the guild hue cannot be traded. If allowed to be picked up by someone who isn't in the guild, the item loses the hue immediately. Similar applies for pet transfer & releasing.
- Guild menu now has a "remove guild hue" option, which allows you to restore the item's hue. It will make it what it actually was before (for example, if it was a platinum armor, or dyed with a universal dyetub. it won't just become plan colored).
- It's possible to add non-guilded-players to a the list of allowed tub users, if you have any friends you'd like to allow to wear the hue as well.
- No longer possible to dye stackable items (like cloth). If you dye a clothing item and cut it, the cloth coming out of it will be plain colored.

Though, it comes at a cost:
- Registration of a guild hue costs 5 million gold (includes initial tub). Registration can be done without help of staff.
- Each additional tub is 2 million gold,
- Each tub comes with a monthly 250k maintenance fee,
- First 5 non-guild users are free, then 100k per month for additional slots. Not yet sure, but this might be set to be a permanent buy (you can buy additional slots, and once you have the slot, there's no monthly fee).

Existing hues (those that have been registered before the change):
For the first 6 months (until end of September) will be exempt from the monthly fee.
Then, 6 months after that (October 1st till March 31st 2017), there's a 50% reduction for the monthly fee.

We've given the monthly fee some considerable thought, and then decided to go with it. The main factor for this is because it's currently possible to own exclusive rights to multiple hues, by having a guild on each of your characters. This has been a gray area, but we haven't prohibited it.
Due to the one-time registration fee it's basically quite cheap to own several hues, and they aren't in a big enough supply for everyone to have one or two hues reserved for personal use.

Note that all items dyed prior to this upgrade are "grandfathered", or more simply put, not registered with the new system. Those items will not lose hue when traded, etc, they act as if they were all dyed with a unitub.
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Re: EXCELSIOR DAILY

Postby +Colibri on Sun Mar 27, 2016 8:37 pm

Happy easter everyone!
Get your goodie basket from the giftstone at the Town Center.

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Re: EXCELSIOR DAILY

Postby +Nyx on Mon Apr 11, 2016 8:12 pm

Decorative beehive addons are now available in the Deco room on the same stone as the piano.
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Re: EXCELSIOR DAILY

Postby +Nyx on Tue Apr 12, 2016 3:21 pm

There are two new quests in the newbie dungeon for players under 21 days' account age: Tool Mania, and Dungeon Hopper. For information regarding these quests, visit: http://uoex.net/wiki/New_Players_Guide#Newbie_Dungeon
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Re: EXCELSIOR DAILY

Postby +Nyx on Mon Apr 25, 2016 3:55 pm

The Mistvale Cloak, Sash, and Reaper have been made permanently account bound.

This is to end the recurring problem of new players being taken advantage of by older players - it has been happening off and on ever since I opened Mistvale, and I have been considering this change actively since December. On the one hand, I didn't want to bind them because I liked the idea of it being an option for the new player to have a big dollar item to sell, and to help encourage more economic interaction between newer players and older players. On the other hand, we have lost a number of new players who quit the shard after they were swindled by a vet player telling them the item was worth far less than it is. Once the new player found out what happened, and knowing they couldn't do the quest again for another to keep, they were discouraged and it gave them a bad impression of uoex. Since it is still happening, and since I can't really sit and hover over every new player attempting to sell these items in order to ensure they aren't scammed, this change became the necessary choice.

All of these items already existing have been bound, and all future quest turn-ins will result in a bound item.

As an additional note, I do have plans to implement various items/resources that will be available to new players which veterans will need for different activities in Elysium from questing to crafting. I had hoped to wait for this sort of change to Mistvale until those items were already implemented, but it didn't work out that way.
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Re: EXCELSIOR DAILY

Postby +Colibri on Thu May 12, 2016 11:59 am

Selling for RL currency

Wording of the Codex 7.e. rule was somewhat ambiguous: please don't, but it's not forbidden. As it turned out, some are honoring this request, but not all - over time, one person does it, two people do it, then a few others see this going on for a while without any consequence and it seems like it's ok. We also has a Poll Stone up in Magincia for a while, with the results mostly in favor of such trade to be minimized. So we changed the rule to be a little more specific:

"Selling in-game objects for real money is discouraged. It's not allowed to publicly advertise any transaction for real money (e.g. public chat, forum, or as price tag next to an item in the game). Frequent and/or high volume selling is forbidden and may result in inability trade anything in the game, temporarily or permanently. Buyers beware: we cannot vouch for any such trade. If a large portion of one account's items are transferred to another, it's an indication that the account was sold as a whole, see rule 1.a. "

Also:
- If any item traded this way turns out to originate from an exploit or scam, the item will be taken away. If an item is actually traded for in-game currency, we can still see that and are able to compensate the price. But if the payment was done outside of the game, there is no possible way to confirm that.
- If all items of one account (or very large portion) are transferred to another account, it's an indication that the account was sold. Combined with other factors, this may be considered as breaking of the multi-account rule.

In MMO games such trading is usually prohibited with no exceptions or questions asked.

Putting theory to practice. There's two extremes to consider:
A: A friend gave you a gamecode for another game, and you "lend/gift" a high-value item to them in this game. That's basically something we'll have a hard time finding out in the first place, and proving, only way to effectively prevent this from happening is to account-bind every item in the game. And it's part of life, friends trade/gift favors and token value items in real life all the time as well.
B: Actively buying and selling items with real currency, on a weekly or daily basis, possibly advertising it and getting return customers. That's what this rule is about, and the updated wording makes it clearer.

Where is the line of what's still acceptable? Hard to say, and the rule doesn't mention any exact number.
For about a month now, the server has been logging all trades. Not just secure-window trades, but any kind of transfer of an item or pet from one person to another. We can't see a difference between a sold or gifted item, and if it's sold, for how much it was. But every now and then we'll go thru the logs (with an algorithm to analyze the data), combined with other sources (e.g. reports of players). Those that stand out (where it's evident that this is beyond lending/gifting to your friends, or an occasional trade), will either get a warning, or a temporary trade ban. If it continues, the ban may be made permanent. A trade ban prohibits a player from receiving or giving any item to anyone else, by any means. But still allows to run around, engage monsters, do quests, etc.
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