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Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Reblogging Myself

Okay, I just got back from a short trip and don't have time to write a fresh post. But I'm going to repost one of my old posts because I haven't heard much on this subject and I think it bears repeating.
When I first started playing EQII, I really enjoyed HO's. Even when soloing, they add some much needed spice to combat. There is an element of chance and it at least makes you feel as if you are doing something strategic.

In groups, it's even better. For one, it's really fun to do something as a team. Sure, we all play our team roles in group, but we kind of do it independently. HO's are something that really requires working together. It is a great feeling when you pull off a Heroic Opp and even better if it is one of the more difficult ones. What's more, it rewards static groups, something I really enjoy. In my old static group, someone would just say "Fate" and we would immediately pull off the Luminary Fate HO like clockwork. It made me feel like we were a great team and the game was rewarding us for that.

But, like certain other gameplay elements (hello empty Arena how are you today?) I've mentioned in the past, I feel like HO's have suffered a bit from neglect. I have two issues here. First, I don't feel enough care has ever gone into balancing and rebalancing HO's. I also don't feel as if they scale enough with level. It would be nice to see the super-rare ones just a bit more frequently as well.

Second, and more importantly, a little innovation with the HO's would go a long way. I would love to see HO's change as you level up, not necessarily every level but maybe every ten or twenty levels. When my group is at a higher level, we should be able to pull off different and new HO's. I really think this would keep it fresh and exciting. At the very least there should be new HO's with every new expansion. As it stands now, I do not see people getting that excited about HO's anymore, though I still use then while soloing and they are still useful in group.

To summarize, it's a good mechanic which has the potential to be great with a little work. But I think this point is open to debate so I'd love to hear what you have to say on this subject.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

So much agree!!
I have just brought in the game about 30 freinds (old guild from DAOC) disappointed by wow and they are having a blast with HO's!!

But.. but I don't have the heart to tell them that they will become less useful with every level to the point of total unimportance :(

Probably the brighter design idea and at the same time the most overlooked aspect of EQ2 since launch I'd say.

How hard can it be to slightly revamp or just let them *seriously* scale with levels?


4:28 AM  
Blogger jaipehg said...

Totally agree when it comes to HOs. I had a core group back in my 20/30s and we had them mastered, it was so fun! Then some of them quit.. now one has come back and he's all, "Why doesn't anyone do HOs anymore!?" He's still only 36. I'd love it if they'd revamp it a bit and made people more aware of 'em again.

9:12 AM  
Blogger Quylein said...

I think it's becuase fight's, even tough fights have became trvial with becuase of the length of fights. Some where I read that it was SOE goal to make no fight last longer then 30seconds. If I can kill an encounter in less then 30 seconds why should I care about an extra added bit of damage to kill a mob in say 24 seconds because of HO's.

I agree I love HO's and think that if you have a decent enough group you should be able to pull any off but their is no real reason to pull the off other then pretty effects and a few quick buffs.

Unlike FFXI where you wanted to do your HO (like) ablitys because it gave a greater bit of damage and it would basically assure an easier fight.

10:09 AM  
Anonymous Fergle F Fergleson said...

Chalk up another /agree. I loved the HOs.

However, two of the newer guys I've brought over (one from EQ1 and one from WoW), *don't* like them, at all. They're slowly being brought around to the idea that HOs are useful, but it's an uphill struggle.

10:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well there has been one change to HO's. The first Bard AP ability halves the recast on their HO starter. It doesn't seem like much, but I use it to keep buffs on all the scouts (+23 to all offensive abilities... not bad even at lvl 70).

I would like to see some changes to HO's, but I think that HO's do give groups an edge as they are.

Its just that so many groups that I join perform far below what they are capable of, so using HO's seems relatively unimportant... i.e., tank doesn't pull very fast, wizard watching tv, etc.

11:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The biggest change to HO's since release was the shortening of the timer. This made the HO's harder to use, and therefore, less desireable.

I still use HO's everytime I group, I even have hotkeys set up for who needs to do what. I really do enjoy them, but REALLY wish they would revamp them...

3:12 PM  
Blogger Teh Chunt said...

Nothing has changed from the first time you posted this, Aggro, and that's sad. HOs are one of the things that makes the game more interesting, and it is puzzling that they haven't addressed the many issues that crop up with them.

Playing a scout class on Nagafen for the first time, It adds a whole new level of fun to be able to start 4 class HOs, and to "flip" Hos to get better ones. Some HO bonuses are really good, and the rare 4 class HO is pretty badass.

Of course, as any PvPers surely know by now, HOs are disabled in PvP fights. There has been no explanation as to why, so I can only hope it's because they plan to revamp them a bit, and didn't want them in their current form in PvP. I really hope SOE looks at Heroic Ops and decides to expand and refine them.

After all, what better way to reward good teamwork then with heroic Ops? Groups who work well together would be able to pull off cool heroics that may change the tide of battle in their favor, whereas people who just zerg with no eye to strategy will suffer. For certain classes *cough* priests *cough*, HOs are super important for soloing, and help priests do dmg. So why take this away in PvP? If SOE wants to nerf the effects a little for PvP, fine. But let them scale with level, and don't nerf them so bad that they're useless.

And finally, why not make HOs do unique things based on what class does them? If a Defiler, Assassian, Shadowknight and Necromancer do a Heroic Op, it should do crazy poison/disease dmg. If it's a wizzie, fury, Bruiser and troub, it should do elemental dmg. Maybe even make it specific to the point that HO is based on subclass as well as class. Any fighter could trigger the taunt HO, for example, but a Bruiser, Paladin and Zerker would create 3 different HOs. Maybe it's a lot to hope for, but Heroic Ops are a cool mechanic, and unless SOE fixes them, they might as well take them out, since barely anyone (except me, Aggro, and a few others) use them.

7:31 PM  
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