Thursday, June 4, 2009

EQ2 Research Assistants My Way

Research Assistant. Those two words are causing so much angst on the EverQuest 2 forums. A lot of players, mainly raiders, are upset with the ability of casual players to obtain tier 8 master-level spells and combat arts by purchasing or making the adept 3 version of the spell/combat art, giving the adept 3 to an NPC and receiving the master version after about 30 days. I’m upset because I cannot get one to put in my home.

If I were a developer, this is how I would implement Research Assistants.

You need a big home – If you need a home to put your AA mirror and altars in to use, then you need to put the RA in your home. But no self-respecting RA is going to settle for being stuffed into a corner. So I would require that in order to have an RA, a player must have at least a 3-room home. And you can’t just leave your rent unpaid for 3 weeks and then expect to get your spell. If you don’t pay your rent, the RA would stop working on your spell. It’s hard to work on something if the landlord has thrown you into the street.

You must equip your RA – If you really expect a research assistant to produce master-level spells, you must equip your RA to do the work. So a player would need to purchase either a work bench, engraved desk, or chemistry table in order to do the upgrade.

And don’t think you can get away with not feeding your research assistant! Players already feed and water their plants to get cool stuff, research assistants should be no different. So if your RA becomes hungry or thirsty, the research stops. And the food and drink must last for the actual real life time, not game played time. So if you load up your RA with 5 hour food & drink, you would only need to give your research assistant 144 food & 144 drink to last for 30 days. And to make the food and drink make sense, the tier of food & drink should the RA requires should match the tier of the spell the RA is researching. For example, if the RA is creating a tier 5 spell, the player would have to give the RA tier 5 or better food and drink. Since I’ve heard that a research assistant can make a tier 8 master spell in 27-29 days that means a player would only have to give their RA 7 stacks of food and 7 stacks of drink.

Is this proposal extreme? I don’t think so. I currently live in a 2-room apartment in the inn in North Qeynos and do not have any of the crafting stations and these requirements would lead me to expand into another area of EverQuest 2 that I’ve neglected in the past. I’m sure I’m missing a few problems that programmers would have implementing these features, but I really think my idea is really way better than what we will see in Game Update 52.

Related Post: EQ2 Research Assistants: The Reality

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