2017 Ebon Gate Event Feedback

Friday, October 20th, 2017, 10:07:23 AM

To seperate out the clutter of the games wins and to organize a more formal feedback of the event in general...

Please, try to give an objective anaylsis of this year's Ebon Gate event. Parse out your opinions based on event sub-type (games, merchants, stores, story etc.)

Finally, give your personal feeling on how the event went from previous years.

Friday, October 20th, 2017, 11:27:10 AM

Overall, I've liked the event so far and understand that with a new venue there will be growing pains so even at my most frustrated I'm still enjoying myself. You can tell the island has been very well done and the thought that's gone into it is evident in every ambient and NPC I've seen so far. I feel like there are less items I was excited about this year compared to previous years and, outside of the cobbling shop (lol #cobblinghoarding), my purchases this year were much lower than last year despite purchasing items for more characters than in previous years. That's not to say the new scripts and items released this year aren't amazing, they really are and you guys did a great job.

Shopping: I would very much like to see a feature pavillion at EG again, these yearly options to have features changed on alts without taking up GM time has been a huge draw for me in previous years.

Sweatshop - with a new venue, can we possibly start making this a staple?

Limited item shops: I really hope something can be done to keep people from buying these all up for resale at a ridiculous markup. I know it's not the GMs fault, but maybe a cooldown on purchasing items? Not sure there's an easy answer for this.

Feywort Shops: Would it be possible to ask for some of these shops to make a new appearance next year? There were a handful of shops from previous years I was disappointed not to see again.

Games/Digging: Globes: Can we please make these sellable? Getting hundreds of these with no recourse but to throw them out is rough.

Prize wall: In previous years we've had a prize wall for the game currency we accumulated. While none of these prizes were DR quality, for the most part people could find something they wanted. We could even add a few "higher priced" items in limited quantity here possibly... but definitely spell preps, maybe premade sig verbs specific to that year at EG? The latter isn't as desirable, to me, as the first though.

Please, please, please make sure all the non t5-t6 prizes are pawnable. It's fairly frustrating dealing with inventory management when you're playing games/prepping for merchant week and this would definitely help cut down on that. Even worse when you can't throw something in a wastebasket OR sell it.

I'd also prefer not to have quest items primarily tied to a simucoin side-event. While there were changes made to allow us to find quest items via games, it was a very slow process comparatively speaking.

Friday, October 20th, 2017, 11:46:19 AM

Sometimes I feel like the slot machine events are like entertaining a cat with a laser pointer, but never giving the cat something tangible to catch and chew on at the end. There's no satisfaction, and thus very discouraging. Lots of people are in this to grind for the good stuff, and the grinders are where the money is. You'll have someone roll in and get a jackpot with 10 tries, and some of us have thousands of tries with T5 wins that we could get during as Reim run. Gear that's 5x with flares is not worth it. Seriously. It's really annoying to wait two days and finally get that sweet, sweet T5 messaging, only to get 5x light leather.

Friday, October 20th, 2017, 12:18:04 PM

@mogonis I think the 'slot machines' as you call them are too new at this point. They can't keep churning out gear in this type of format especially with such a tiny playerbase (relative to say WoW or Overwatch etc.) because it won't soak in and cycle. Eventually, they'll hit peak capacity and something else would need to take over.

I know we're all cynical about the game at this point (including Simu) and we all think it's all about the gear. But, this is an unsustainable model in my point of view. I think you can spike sales and hold people's interest for a couple more years but with a 'gear dispensing' event every other month coupled with a stabilizing population it just won't have the staying power.

Furthermore, I really think the game is selling itself far short if they continue to use this model. People can get on the 'gear hunting train' in any number of graphical mmos but a text based game with an almost 'novel-like' ability to tell a story I think can be utilized in more personal character development direction.

I'm ruminating here but if Gemstone is to go on strong beyond the next 2 or 3 years a way to affect storyline directly without GM involvement is the way forward imho. That is, give players partial GM powers, much like a storyteller's toolkit to directly shape what happens in the world up to and including affecting other characters. I know that's a golden rule that's not to be broken but some minor inconveniences (with GMs acting as referees) such as the North Gate being closed or House Twilight being burned down (with the actual burning being scheduled by the story's participants) or a poisonous fog rolling through town concoted by a player who has in-game powers to do such an event would be awesome to see...

Because folks digging and diving till your eyes glaze over can only go so far, it may even come to a point where getting a jackpot incites a "meh" from the player.

Friday, October 20th, 2017, 2:44:52 PM

Diving is awful. Digging is allright. Games are blah. Fishing is awesome!!

Diving should be half the cost!!

Friday, October 20th, 2017, 7:02:25 PM

@god There are tons of things that could be tier 5-6 without effecting the long term. How about 5 (or pick any number) services notes for W/P/S. And I mean automated notes, no GM interaction needed. People would probably fall over themselves doing the games if these were in there. Greater elemental flares notes. Basically take the script shop and throw some of those contracts into the feeder.

Friday, October 20th, 2017, 7:21:51 PM

@god I also question the sustainability of this "open the spigot every 3 months" model. You can see the difficulty with the model when after about a year of dumping one sort of item into the market, it is no longer valued and they have to move on to something else. I admire the creativity of the exercise, but how long can it go on? Also, if increasing revenue is your goal, in a game that already costs more than almost every other game to play, where do you go for more revenue? I do think that in that regard the F2P model is the correct approach because at some point you run out of people willing to pour obscene amounts of money into the game when a year or two later everything they bought is worth less than they paid for it. TLDR: gotta have more suckers to survive.

Friday, October 20th, 2017, 11:02:10 PM

What a shit move on slabs and slab generator. Another mechanic bites the dust to be locked behind cash sales.

Saturday, October 21st, 2017, 8:25:25 AM

The overlapping from the last major (pay) WPS event and this one is a major bummer in my book. If nothing can be done here, I at least hope they work something in the future to avoid it. They said the 2 month window was to stop people from feeling like they had to find merchants fast to fill the window (30 days). How it is now, I dread trying to start the window up again fast enough to avoid having my project effectively unable to be worked on at a big event. Get spun at the tail end of one big pay deal and the next one is next to worthless for that item.

Saturday, October 21st, 2017, 8:43:42 AM

The items were definitely toned down in scale/power from even previous EGs. This was mostly a RP flavor event imho. Which to me was great! Because it was surprisingly well done. But it could just be because I like this particular styling.

One suggestion: Please make the Quest item wearable for converts to Ghezresh, simple change can make a big difference in terms of RP. Thanks.

Thursday, October 26th, 2017, 10:56:31 PM

I love Ebon Gate, but sometimes I really hate the luck factor. Made it to every offering of a particular service I really wanted and never got picked.

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 9:20:05 AM

Honestly, it's been an incredible disappointment and bad ROI. It can be extraordinarily frustrating going from merchant to merchant and not getting any work done and watching seemingly the same names chosen for services and winning raffles.

I got lucky with one GALD spin and happened to get to a room for L/D in room order twice. No other services. 180 dives in and only a couple of silly, not mechanical beneficial, T5 wins. Honestly, the best thing that's happened is turning eggs (which I had to purchase) into RPA orbs.

I'm hoping to commit this to long term memory so I'm not burned again next year (if I'm even still around).

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 9:23:54 AM


It does feel like the 'same names' are getting picked for services, I always wondered about this. GMs being human beings may have certain leanings in terms of who get's picked since they do also play. I never liked that aspect of GameMasters, being both player and ref at the same time might engender some conflict of interests. But, it's impossible to tell so...

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 9:31:00 AM

There are more than a handful of jaded ex-GMs out there who would have long since spilled the beans if there were any sort of bias built into automated methods of choosing such as spinners and raffles.

The same people tend to win because they're 1. The ones who show up to nearly every merchant offering and 2. Actually talk about winning.

Wyrom posted not that long ago that a good number of T5's and T6's have gone out with their owners choosing not to say anything. He's also posted multiple times about the amount of AFK scripting that is going on with the games, to include a warning that logging out right after a major win institutes a policy violation.

If there's any chance of bias among staff it would have to do with storylines more than anything else, but that's an entirely different conversation (and a viewpoint I don't necessarily support)

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 10:07:27 AM

@evarin Why would logging out right after a major win constitute a policy violation?

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 10:08:41 AM

@evarin That's not necessarily my point. I don't think that there is some mechanically programmed benefit to some players and their chance of winning. I have not entered every raffle nor gone to every merchant. But if I am doing either, it's because that item/service is of personal benefit. It's frustrating watching winners turn around and sell a win to another player at an astronomical price for profit. I also understand that's just the way things are and always have been.

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 10:13:19 AM

@god said in 2017 Ebon Gate Event Feedback:

@evarin Why would logging out right after a major win constitute a policy violation?

What I would expect, and I imagine Wyrom could weigh in here if he likes, is that they were script checking people who popped up with major wins. There were mentions of people having their jackpots pulled because they were AFK scripting. So, people likely got the smart idea to have their script slam them if they won something good to avoid the increased scrutiny. That's a no-no as people have already been trying to use that trick with normal AFK scripting. When their scripts detect non-standard messaging they would slam to avoid failing the script check. Naturally, rules were put into place to curb this behavior. These rules apply to scripting games just as much as they do scripting hunting.

TL:DR People are trying to avoid a script check by logging off when they think they'll be under increased scrutiny.

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 10:19:23 AM

@xannorath said in 2017 Ebon Gate Event Feedback:

@evarin That's not necessarily my point. I don't think that there is some mechanically programmed benefit to some players and their chance of winning. I have not entered every raffle nor gone to every merchant. But if I am doing either, it's because that item/service is of personal benefit. It's frustrating watching winners turn around and sell a win to another player at an astronomical price for profit. I also understand that's just the way things are and always have been.

I see what you're saying. Like you said, that's the way things go. I like that they gate things by profession/skill training etc, but people don't like that for a variety of reasons. Same with character/account bound stuff. I think a healthy mix of restrictions is the way to go, and it seems they are somewhat heading in the right direction.

For better or worse, there will be some that see money left on the table if they don't chase after every single offering during merchant week. Any attempts to curtail that behavior will be seen as a perceived loss in value to many paying to attend. I'm beginning to adopt the mindset of skipping the events and using the money I would have spent on the tickets/games and spending it on the secondary market to get what I want instead.

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 10:22:36 AM


Geeze.. They should really just put a time limit per day on the digs and jack up the price per shovel and the odds. People shouldn't feel inclined to AFK script in order to "win" at the games nor hurt their health to try to win something either. My two cents on the matter.

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 10:23:47 AM

The hours people put into these games are beyond me. Save your silver/cash, buy what you want from those who win. 90% of it (my thoroughly researched statistic) will be up for resale anyway.

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 10:56:28 AM

I think I'm ready to provide my feedback as we're in the last day's of the merchant event. I am going to say, that this may be considered whining by some, which is fine as this is expected to be a feedback thread, both constructive and not. Let me start by saying I've been around a long time...a year or 2 before the great migration to the web. So I've been to the Spitfire's of old, the juggernaut, but never had the money to do events. I took a long time off, then came back and BMC was my first paid event. I also did mini paid events like Duskruin and the re-hashed Delirium Manor (thought I did Delirium in plat).

With that said, my feedback is short sighted as I'm only coming from BMC being my only paid, full event...and I loved it.

Event and Venue - BMC's setting in the winter was amazing...as was the quest/event for discovering Forest Armor. It was fun an interactive, it also didn't require spam bot digging and loot collecting to build some strange temple. Granted, we haven't seen the end of EG yet but I'm not impressed, nor engaged in the RP. The waves crashing and the overall chilly feeling and drains is a neat effect and glad it was implemented, but the storyline just doesn't seem to embrace the spookiness.

Minigames - EG added additional minigames to the mix and really expanded the offering. This went leaps over what BMC provided, but was very lackluster in the beginning. DSD was clearly expected to be a cash farm, which is fine; however, those that picked up DSD passes early on I felt got gipped, me included. It was released too early, then made better later the following week without any compensation to those who spent money early on. This was seen with a clear drop in DSD purchases and a fall back with temple construction due to lack of materials. (this could just be speculation on my part). DSD was MUCH better the last week, but I really felt like my money was stolen during week one and could be a deal breaker for me for future EGs.

Gear and Shops - BMC and EG seem to be on point with gear availability, though the use of seashells was blah. The collection of seashells as a secondary currency really was lackluster. Very few uses for seashells, especially in the beginning and the introduction of a limited T6 purchases for ludicrous spambot/multi account seashell gathering expectations was simply silly. I'm assuming next EG will put the vast amounts of seashells to better use, but I just saw this as a waste. I enjoyed the unique and scripted wears during EG.

Merchants - I absolutely loved the merchant availability during BMC. I felt like there were so many, all the time, and during such a short event period. I felt like I was bouncing to and fro from merchants, either getting selected or not for general services or unique unlocks. We even had epic deepening as a service at BMC and have yet to see it for EG. Additionally, some of the more unique services, like spider bag unlocks, were happening at outrageous times. Like between 12 and 2 am Pacific time...and consistently too. This made it near impossible for east coasters with jobs to get this service done, or be fortunate to at least be awake for it. Also, GALD service availability was severely lacking. Nearly all merchant services were specific to wares from their own specialty.

Raffles - Raffles seemed to take center stage for EG and the volume of raffles was up there. Different services, unique items, etc, all seemed to be right on. What was disheartening was to see a flurry of like-names, or repeat names happen through merchant week until the very last couple of days where the names seemed to finally, almost miraculously become more unique. I don't want to say the system is rigged, but it's hard to argue against it after what was witnessed this week. It could very well be that it is entirely RNG, and I'm eating my words. BMC at least had a limit on high end raffle services if I recall correctly. This allowed for a wide array of people to try their luck and win something, this also allowed for people to choose wisely which type of item or service they wanted, and also provided some alt character incentive to try as well. I also felt there was more uniqueness to the name drawing.

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 11:21:41 AM

@evarin said in 2017 Ebon Gate Event Feedback:

I'm beginning to adopt the mindset of skipping the events and using the money I would have spent on the tickets/games and spending it on the secondary market to get what I want instead.

Very much this.

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 11:46:25 AM


I agree on some points.

They need to realize that these "amusement park" events can only go so far before the squeeze makes people cry "uncle". But overall, it wasn't too bad as a pay event perspective. But then again I went in without expecting to win anything. I didn't win anything :)

I wish future events would revolve around more storyline and RP. I know I know, everyone wants stuff but really? Is there some endless black hole of demand for stuff out there? I just don't think so.

A brand new "item" - RP power or Influence power -could be introduced to the game which would allow people to directly take control parts of the official storyline. The only way to gain "IP" is through participating and actively trying to "win" in said storyline, the win objective(s) varying broadly. Mech combat is far secondary in these types of events with RP ability and being actively engaged with the other "actors" being the primary method for reward.

I think this deep level of cynicism about what the game is really about (getting stuff, selling stuff, $ bills ya'll) is just tiresome. It doesn't hurt to try something new, especially when your employees work for peanuts.

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 12:01:08 PM

I think the main thing, for me at least, is that I think raffles should be more restrictive. This whole idea of "entering every raffle" to sell the slot defeats the spirit of getting those items out into the game. A max of one raffle per character/account per event would help alleviate that. I'm not sure why we moved away from the MAJOR raffle wins of previous years, most likely due to complaining, but I thought it was a step in the right direction.

I can't complain about the games, DSD did what it was intended to do...make money. Perhaps it wasn't as lucrative as DM or DR, but I'm sure Simutronics doesn't consider it a failure. While I'd like to see at least one MAJOR event in the year not tied to a simucoin P2P event, I don't think that Gemstone IV will ever exist again. I just need to assess my expectations and realize that going forward I can't spend money on every single pay event because there's too many and it's not sustainable financially.

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 12:14:30 PM

@riend so that's a good point and probably wanted to add that to my post that I'm sure this was a successful event from Simu's stance. Wyrom stated that BMC had the lowest turn out from any event, yet from my comparison provided more benefits and RP opportunities than EG; however, with online presence cresting over 700, and the merchant and raffles rooms filled with accounts, it's hard to argue that this wasn't a monetary win.

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 12:24:37 PM

As someone who did VERY well this EG I can say that it is very much RNG. I've gone to every event since BMC and have run hot and cold. I think one of the things that people miss is the Necropolis. Which, while apparently not available at the first feywrot mire, still provided people who completed the necropolis with a very functional item for their entry fee at the very least. There are also merchants who will go around and find people who didn't get X amount of services and do work for them. That may or may not be the case this year (I would expect it to be the case) because they gave people the option of only buying certain parts of the EG experience.

I can be very critical of things, mostly when it revolves around cash, and was highly vocal when EG started about the design choices centered around DSD and the overall ebon gate quest/storyline. While they made progress to separate the two, it wasn't a perfect setup by any stretch. Even less so when compared with previous offerings and last years DM/EG setup. The lack of a prize wall like system is just mind-blowing, doubly so when seashell generation was a focal point of DSD. The offerings of items for seashells did/does account for some of the new scripts released but the changes to digging helped vastly to ease that concern. A seashell collector shack filled with various items that have washed ashore would have made sense thematically. The shared hopper of T4s seemed off, as the quality of items should have been higher for DSD compared to silvers digging. Unlocked stuff compared to locked, simucoin items etc.

live games were a blast. I tell anyone who asks, put in some effort, ham it up and you'll have a really good chance. The non-creative games this year were very well done and I think gave everyone a really fair chance of succeeding instead of favoring scripting/macros. Merchant week was a blast. Again, RNG swings where some merchants coudn't stop picking me and others that just kept missing. Raffles, lots of amazing raffles, I hit a few really nice lucky ones. I had very nice experiences with all the GMs and I never personally saw anything crazy happen like I did last year when a crowd ran off a GM.

There were a lot of really amazing and fun scripts that came out this year that I think really carried EG for me. Lapidary boxes are easily the most versatile script that I will be using moving forward instead of gem cutters. I think this was a much wanted and appreciated entry into the world that helps smooth over the want of custom gem cutter patterns. Now its just a GALD away if you have a box or two or three. The divination love this year was strong with two new scripts! Thandiwe and Kaikala really outdid themselves. Thandiwe bursts onto the scene with fun merchant RP and well executed deep item scripts - Evisceration knives and the UAC wraps are both really fantastic! I can't wait to see what is to come in the future. Kaikala sets the bar for how an RP item set with multiple parts should be handled - The Igaeshan smoke reader set does two things amazingly well. First, the "consumables" (parchment labels, etc) are unlimited use right off the shelf. Buy them once and you are done. Second, the cases for the set hold all of the other parts of the set as 1 locker item. These two things combined cut down on the micromanagement of the set as a whole and help smooth the entrance of people into the set since it shouldn't require as much juggling as they might think.

Frazzlewyn offering script swapping services so many times was great to see. One of my most favorite items is created from that service, so its nice to see others get a chance to make their desired combinations as well. I think the amount of GALD offerings was about right. There was lots of GALD offered for shop specific items, which I think is "fair" for an event like this. You get a new item and you can make it exactly how you'd like it. General GALD was offered if you kept an eye open. I know the decisions between unlocking and GALD is a tough choice as almost everything comes in tiers now.

The island story/flavor and secrets feel alright to me. I think the world buidling is as strong as ever and look forward to seeing where we go from here with the island.

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 1:44:24 PM

I had a somewhat different experience this EG, but ended up very satisfied (without being thrilled). I participated like crazy. I cleared my schedule, spent (for me) a very significant amount of money on DSD, and brought 4 accounts to the party. I entered every single raffle I could use... which, with 4 characters and friends, was all but the forging slabs. I didn't win a single one, and there were plenty of things that were only 'raffle tier' that I desperately wanted. I attempted to buy them from the winners, but nobody seemed to want to sell. So I missed out on those things, which is a disappointment. I would LOVE it if characters could only win one raffle per event, and if there was a consolation system. If you didn't win a raffle, you get an epic L/D or something. Just... something.

I say this because, while the services were awesome (and they really were), they're a HUGE step down from raffle level wins. I got a TON of services done, and I'm very pleased with that, but really felt like I should have been able to score at least one raffle considering how many I entered.

Those sour grapes aside, the flow of merchant activity has been incredible, and so much appreciated. All week, every night after work, and well into the night... and all the GMs have been so helpful, and understanding. Truly, it's been a blast. I'm more than a little burnt out at this point and ready for it to be over, but I'll absolutely be back next year... where hopefully there's something in place to balance out the raffles a little more (Damn you, Ordim!).

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 1:45:46 PM

@riend said in 2017 Ebon Gate Event Feedback:

I think the main thing, for me at least, is that I think raffles should be more restrictive. This whole idea of "entering every raffle" to sell the slot defeats the spirit of getting those items out into the game. A max of one raffle per character/account per event would help alleviate that. I'm not sure why we moved away from the MAJOR raffle wins of previous years, most likely due to complaining, but I thought it was a step in the right direction.

Hate that I can only upvote this once.

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 2:24:31 PM

+1 to the one raffle win per account or character. I think people would be more selective about which raffles they enter, and odds of the raffle going to someone who truly wants the item would increase. I'm generally in favor of greater restrictions on raffles anyway.

Thoughts on EG overall: I've always hated the slot-machine style events, that's never going to change. No use re-hashing all of that. At this point I just pretend they don't exist.

I loved EG. I am amazed at the amount of hours GMs put in leading up to and during this event. How they can stand us after two weeks of merchant services is beyond me.

As players I've noticed that EG brings out both the best and worst of our collective community. I witnessed acts of immense generosity and also acts of questionable integrity.

Friday, October 27th, 2017, 3:15:19 PM

My Ebon Gate Experience: A Platinum Perspective

So let me start out by saying that I have not been to an Ebon Gate in years. The last one being in 2011 or 2012 or so. I took a long break due to work reasons and just returned over the summer. So it's impossible for me to compare to the most recent EG's...as I've only ever attended the older ones.

Overall Impressions: Wonderful. I really had a blast with this event, and the atmospherics and just FEEL of the whole event was excellent and ultimately exceeded expectations. The Live Games were well done, well run, and wonderfully fun. Merchants were timely, patient, and were willing to go that extra mile to help me out and a noob I was dragging along with me. The raffles were...well, I enjoyed what was raffled off and I can't complain about my luck but I do have some negative issues with raffles. Digging/Games/Diving...well, I just happen to have a different philosophy of how these should be handled then most. I did them, because even in platinum its really one of the only ways I will have access to some of the items on offer, but I didnt want to HAVE to do it. (I know I know I didn't really HAVE to, but if I wanted a chance at access to certain items I sure as hell did!). Overall, a very enjoyable experience! Kudos to those running it, ESPECIAL Kudos to the island's builders, the writers of Ghezresh, and the Merchants :)

Now, lets get into some specifics, and some criticisms and how I think things could be better/more enjoyable.

  1. Merchants: In platinum, if you want a service that isnt a raffle, you generally get it. This year's EG was no exception. Thanks to the people who put up with my 'Uhhhh' when I realized an alteration idea wouldn't work or a surprise merchant coming in and I had nothing prepared. The times they came varied, which was nice, the majority of course coming around 8-11. The only suggestion here is an entirely selfish one: More late night (3AM!) merchanting, as that was my favorite merchant...the one where there were 3 of us just all RPing and getting some GALD done heh.

  2. DSD and the Seashell Chest: To DSD itself...Its a microtrans pay event. Im glad it makes Simu money...and after the inital adjustments it was smooth and I think (for platinum) well put together. I do have the FeelBads that I used my initial book purchase BEFORE the adjustments...which made for a poorer experience overall. So maybe a bit more testing and adjustments before taking a new microtrans event live? The seashell cost for the prize chest in platinum was...excessive...seeing as there just wasnt enough seashells to go around. I think we had one guy who blew a ton of cash on it get a pull. But I had 50k or so seashells when the event occurred and I was the 3rd or 4th HIGHEST amount of seashells in plat. BUT, overall, the chest was a fantastic idea. I just wish the implementation wouldve been adjusted for Platinum.

  3. Raffles: This is my first Major Complaint with EG...and I think it would apply in Prime even more so in Platinum. Why in the world would you not keep major and minor wins? Limit the wins. Spread the love to more people! I say this as someone who won a major raffle. After I had, my account should have been ineligible for more. Another solution? Make wins non-transferable and the thing they win account bound. Im all for limiting the secondary market as much as possible...because it creates such issues and has been overall more harmful for the game than anything else (thats another rant though). In Future EGs, can we please limit wins? This one change would make EG so much better for oh so many.

  4. Digging/Games: This is my...personal pet peeve. I hate doing it. I hate spending hours watching the screen. But...I also could not afford the silver prices that Platinum players would charge for their finds. Also, getting the items out of some of the more mercantile ones would be impossible. So here is where I have to compete...in my lame, one account way. I will say this. I was insanely lucky with finds this EG. 3 Jackpots, over 10 T5's (despite 4 being those...wristbands... prize weighting/distribution thats gonna come up in the next section guys don't worry)...so its not a 'I didn't get nothinnnnn' whine.

The thing is, this whole digging/games? I get the draw. And I love having this opportunity to get a shot at some really neat stuff (for me, anyway, a lot of the T6's would be major upgrades). Just...why do we have a system that encourages sitting and staring at your digging script for literal hours? So! How to do it better? Several ways. There are dozens of ways to improve the system. One I would like to see implemented is a simple one. People like random. Lets keep that. But lets make maybe 10 digs/10 game runs. Adjust win possible percentage accordingly. That way, after your 10 digs or 10 games, you can go back to just playing the game, RPing, hunting, latchin the door at the inn, whatever. Make the shovels cost a lot of silver or seashells or something, if you want to retain the silver drain nature of it (personally I think there are better ways to drain silver but hey).

The point is...Digging Sucks. Lets make it better. Side note: I brought up this idea to the plat people and some of em acted like I wanted to kill their pet...I still think its a good idea. I think they just have some weird Stockholme Syndrome. The two main opponents had ALSO been busted for AFK scripting in the past (more than once!) so...I took their opposition to not being able to multiaccount scriptdig 24/7 with a grain of salt :)

  1. Prize Tiers: Is there a reason there are only 6 Tiers? T5/T6 prizes varied WILDLY in quality this year. There were several feelbads because of it, across the board. And I get it. You get excited when you pull a gem box! You get super excited when it glows! And then you pull....a +28 shield with +10 stamina (not stamina regen...STAMINA). Then you watch your buddy pull a 7x a day Haste Thing. Or a 1004 SK mask. And you weep. Is there any reason we couldn't have more tiers, and then adjust winning percentages for each tier accordingly? Yes, I know. There will still be people who think their prize wasnt the right tier. It won't solve the problem entirely. There will still be whining. But if we didn't do anything unless we were sure EVERYONE would like it....nothing would get done. That mindset is an enemy to progress across the board, and a personal pet peeve of mine as well.

10 Tiers. Highest tiers are things like the Endless Quiver. The new T5 are things like that damned wristband. Set standards for each tier. HOLD to those standards.

This, I feel, would also help the item designers out. Open up some more design space. Right now, things are too binary with T5/T6, and a lot of things straddle the line between a T5/T6. That wouldnt happen (as much) if there were more tiers.

Granulation is a good thing!

And thus ends my long ass post about EG. Thanks for reading!

Saturday, October 28th, 2017, 9:16:51 AM

Since it's primarily over, I'll go ahead and share my thoughts now...

  1. I really like the model of splitting the games, shopping, and services in to their own price points. While doing so probably brought a lot of people in to the games that really didn't care so much about rules/etiquette, letting us choose what level of financial commitment we wanted was a nice change.

  2. As others have said, the switch to all seashells was a great idea, but that prize wall from EG past seems to have been such a huge hit, I'd definitely bring it back and introduce other tier prizes to make the prize levels more granular.

  3. Services - this is where I have an issue and have had issues in the past as well. As far as services go, in 2015, I had an awesome time. I had over 10 services and got some of the services I really wanted. In 2016, I had 3-5 services and there was very little GALD being done, just mainly unlocks. In 2017, I had 5 services. For the prices paid for access, I think more should be done to take the randomness out of getting services. Introduce other non-random ways of awarding services other than just being spun by a GM. As I think of ways to maybe do that, I'll add them here or on the officials so as to help offer solutions instead of just pointing out the problem. I spent about $28 for a service pass. For 5 services, that's about $5.60 per service, or 1 million silvers each in today's market. While in general that is not a bad price, I think that's way too high for during EG. I know buying a service pass doesn't guarantee any service or any number of services, but I think more should be done to make sure people walk away with more than that.

  4. This is not necessarily an EG suggestion, but it's related...Let's reduce the focus on "stuff" and increase the focus on live games, RP events, etc. Is there a game balance reason that all cloak and back worn containers don't already come max light deep at 6/140? What's the purpose, other than "it's always been done that way", of anyone standing in line for an hour or two waiting to get spun so they can increase the capacity of their cloak by 10 lbs? Why would you even want the possibility of something like that happening in a game you want people having fun in? All containers, either sold at EG or NPC shops or anywhere, should just automatically be at their current max l/d. And maybe start leaning that way for weapons and armors too. What does it matter in game balance whether my double leathers are 14 lbs and someone else's are 6 lbs? Enchants and special abilities are something else, I think you should work on your gear to get those. And you know what, waiting in line for an hour gets a heck of a lot easier if I've got the possibility of adding flares/weighting to a weapon I really like vs. trying to get my cloak to hold 10 more lbs.

Concentrate on offering and servicing things like the eisenrucks and lapidary boxes, those are awesome. Do more things like that and less things that are just "stuff" and then need countless hours to be worked on just to max the "stuff".

Saturday, October 28th, 2017, 9:41:12 AM


10 Tiers is a bit excessive. I think what they should do is divide all items with "c" "u" and "f" which stands for combat, utility, and fluff. So a T6c would be the endless quiver, while ampoules would be T5u etc.

Also, note that there seemed to be a general across the board downgrade of all items in this year's EG. The quest item is so lackluster that any draw for me to go to next year's EG will not come from it.

Saturday, October 28th, 2017, 9:48:55 AM

@god said in 2017 Ebon Gate Event Feedback:


10 Tiers is a bit excessive. I think what they should do is divide all items with "c" "u" and "f" which stands for combat, utility, and fluff. So a T6c would be the endless quiver, while ampoules would be T5u etc.

Also, note that there seemed to be a general across the board downgrade of all items in this year's EG. The quest item is so lackluster that any draw for me to go to next year's EG will not come from it.

It's not even out yet, and it's probably safe to assume we can increase its effectiveness each year (like the black ora hearts).

Saturday, October 28th, 2017, 10:19:52 AM

Stop charging alt currency for items that manage said alt currency. They should be basically free and if anything they should be for silvers (like 500 silvers)

Saturday, October 28th, 2017, 11:52:21 AM

I invested on the low side (diving for seashells for perm-ing a couple things) so I feel like I got my money's worth on that. I barely played the games or digging. Not my thing.

Did well enough in getting spun for some things, but realized that when it came down to it I didn't get a lot done that I was hoping for going in. A decent amount of incidental stuff, a few GALDs and enough unlocking that I feel like I got my money's worth, but it really felt like a war. EG's always felt like that to me, and has always been my least favorite pay event. After five years off this seems exacerbated by the change in attitude regarding MAing. I'm old fashioned. I have two accounts, one of which is for support (storage, item transfer, etc). I bring one account to events, raffles, merchants, etc. This EG made me feel like that's just not gonna cut it these days.

Thinking back, I had a better time at the no-extra-cost summer Premium festival. EG is my first ever paid merchant event in the Simucoin era, though, so I'll probably give the next such event a go. I'll be thinking hard about whether to get a service pass for next year's EG, though.

Saturday, October 28th, 2017, 12:59:20 PM

Curious what their numbers were especially toward the latter days.

Saturday, October 28th, 2017, 3:49:18 PM

My first Ebon Gate! Had a wonderful time and here are my thoughts... they're extremely long-winded, but--well, I'm still feeling overwhelmed after all of that!

~The Good~

-The GMs

Our awesome GMs have to be acknowledged! Everything great I'm about to mention about EG is all thanks to their tireless efforts. Well, except for one thing, which is...

-The Players

Didn't expect to have great times in merchant lines, but a lot of you were very fun to be around. Honestly, I don't even know how you did it--by day 3 I was exhausted and felt like I was on sleepwalking autopilot (if I could muster up the will to interact at all), and maybe that was true for others too, but I sure couldn't tell.

Off the top of my head, some of my favorite characters to be around were Crux, Heartfire, Naamit, Rohese, and Rozy, which is mostly a cast that Leafi rarely gets to see and really spiced things up.

-The overall feel of the island

Loved the ambients all the way through and I like the wandering NPCs, even ones like the sea slug that don't talk. (Maybe especially that one!) Also, from an in-character perspective the isle was just ambiguous enough to justify having my characters participate in the quest, since they weren't sure whether the island was under a curse or was the curse or what.

-Spell customizations

The availability of spell customs really filled a niche for me--while I love Summit Academy and spent tons at it for Leafi, I couldn't justify the Simucoins for my alts. Silvers are an easy leap to make, though, and now they're spruced up a bit! Also bought a 111 flare custom for a Jaston-following friend because the feathers made perfect sense, and a custom disk for her too.

Just so happy about these customs even though I got in early and way overpaid in silvers for almost all of them at the start when we thought they might be more rare than they ended up. (And now I'm looking forward to the next Summit Academy and how much better that will get too!)

-Digging and Seashells

I needed lots of things permified, so digging up seashells and tossing them at the obelisk was great for me. Also want to mention how fantastic it was that early problems with junky, unpawnable items were resolved super quick.

I do understand others' criticism of seashells, though. They wouldn't have meant much to me either if not for all my perfume, as even the seashell-exclusive items were pretty cheap. We'll need new things for seashells next year, at least for me.

-Merchant Week

Wow, was I not ready for this at all! I didn't even go for anything I wouldn't want to use personally, which was tons of things. Shocklances, ritual daggers, anything else from Goblyn, divination stuff, script swapping, doohickey unlocks, property removal, sanctification, tattoos... I didn't go near any of that. Probably other things I'm forgetting!

And somehow I still got 23 services. Totally boggles my mind, and 4 of those were things that are virtually never offered and another 7 were things I'd normally have to hope for from premium-exclusive merchants.

That's all with buying a service pass for only one account, by the way! And without counting two raffle wins that still have me reeling. Thanks again to our tireless GMs for the insane amount of work they do.

I have to give special mention to Airisu because I got nine things from her alone--she works absolute wonders for us cobblers. And her games to win extra prizes were tons of fun.

Also special mention to Hibis for a gemcutter pattern alter, a super rare service that came out of nowhere on the last day. I know people love the new lapidary boxes, and so do I, but I didn't win any unlocks for those and I still like my gemcutters too. Cookie-shaped chrisms for all, coming up!

~The Bad~


Compared to other similar Simucoin "slot machines," diving doesn't pay out in a currency as valuable as bloodscrip and also is missing intermediate prizes like deepening notes, guild vouchers, Chronomage capsules, etc. that make other events fun.

I definitely won't be diving next year without major changes. Not enough value when you could either buy three games passes for 500 fewer Simucoins than a 50 pass, or just wait for another event that feels more rewarding for the same cost.

Also, I loved the idea of a premium-exclusive area, but again the execution seemed flawed. Seashell caches seemed like the main draw... but seashells are easy enough to get that having 10 searches at the shallow level seemed more valuable.

It seems like the main audience for diving would be people who 1) want a lot of seashells, 2) don't have time to dig for them, and 3) don't want to buy them on the secondary market. That seems very narrow...

~The Middling~


I liked a lot of the shops. I picked up perfume, forging aprons, forging glyphs, cobbling punches, cobbling totes, stationery boxes, armor concealers, lapidary boxes, gemcutter patterns, and maybe other things I'm forgetting! I'll probably buy 100-count jars before it's all over.

It was also great fun seeing friends light up over many things that I wouldn't buy personally, since we all have different interests and characters! For a new venue this was just good and I'm looking forward to Caligos expanding next year.

Some downsides...

The instruments in Fine Tuning looked nice and all, but they don't have zests like the ones from the Midsummer Festival, nor do they make musical notes like instruments from last year's EG. A little disappointing for my bard and Tilamaire cleric compared to previous offerings.

Also very saddened by no slab generator. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad Duskruin has one, but I won't buy slabs with bloodscrip knowing it might be the difference between getting a high end item or not... Definitely wanted them at EG and I think it would have helped with the seashell market too.

Lastly, Professional Courtesy... I love the idea of a profession-limited shop, but I can't see why these items were considered too potent to be sold in unlimited quantities. Many were actually kinda blah, but even the best ones were usually taking up inventory slots that have tons of competition from other things just as powerful or moreso.

(Or maybe I'm the one out of touch with the value of +2 Manipulation/Telepathy or other bonuses. Totally possible!)

-Quest Reward

I know I have to reserve some judgment because we don't know how much better it will get in coming years. And I did take my characters to 1000 favor because I'm holding out hope.

For now, though, I won't be using it at all. As I've said to friends, the spell 217 (Major Interference) reduces DS and TD more and reduces AS and hits every enemy... and I still don't cast that spell unless I'm helping someone uphunt 30-90 levels.

To be fair, that uses 17 mana and the quest item doesn't use any (...I hope), so if it at least eventually expands to be multi-target then maybe it'll be useful. We'll see.

Saturday, October 28th, 2017, 5:19:48 PM


Yeah, that Quest item needs to be seriously re-thought out. -5 DS and -3 TD on a single target x2/day. Even if it was -50 DS and -30 TD it would be fairly useless with those restrictions.

Saturday, October 28th, 2017, 6:04:05 PM

Then don't participate.

Saturday, October 28th, 2017, 6:06:28 PM

@leafiara said in 2017 Ebon Gate Event Feedback:

Off the top of my head, some of my favorite characters to be around were Crux, Heartfire, Naamit, Rohese, and Rozy, which is mostly a cast that Leafi rarely gets to see and really spiced things up.

Aww, thank you! I had a blast too, although Ebon Gate will forever be known as Goat Gate to Rohese now. She's still traumatised!

Saturday, October 28th, 2017, 8:44:18 PM

@god said in 2017 Ebon Gate Event Feedback:


10 Tiers is a bit excessive. I think what they should do is divide all items with "c" "u" and "f" which stands for combat, utility, and fluff. So a T6c would be the endless quiver, while ampoules would be T5u etc.

Also, note that there seemed to be a general across the board downgrade of all items in this year's EG. The quest item is so lackluster that any draw for me to go to next year's EG will not come from it.

Maybe just an "f" and a "u."

Sunday, October 29th, 2017, 12:45:50 PM

This year October has been filled with some serious (good!) RL stuff so I did not have the time to participate like I have in past years. With heavily restricted free time I only purchased a "service pass". While I am satisfied with the amount of services I had done considering my lack of availability I did find it slightly disappointing when there were merchants who only worked on items from their shops who did not offer alternative GALD for those who did not purchase the "shopping pass". Don't get me wrong... I think splitting up the event into "services", "shopping", and "games" was a good idea. In fact it was perfect for my situation this year.

Some of the new items which I was able to obtain despite not having a "shopping pass" were really cool! I didn't get everything I wanted though because I just have too much stuff. Sometimes I feel like I can't keep up with all the nifty toys I've collected over the past few years. Maybe it is my RL view of there being an over saturation of "things" but it's creeping into my gaming perspective.

While I miss the whole Feywrot theme I loved the new area, story, and mythos created for this event. It is all very creative, wonderfully painted, the whole feel of it coalesced very well. Rebuilding a temple is such a great cooperative idea. I'd have loved to participate but just didn't have the time.

I think they have a few kinks to work out for next time. One can avoid the "shopping pass" for the most part with help from other players which I did take advantage of thanks to some helpful people on Discord. They might think about combining "shopping and services" for next year. While I was able to obtain the items I wanted again thanks to helpful folks on Discord I am not a fan of the seashell currency. It seems like there is not enough meaningful value to seashells for the average event goer. I still have general tickets from EG past that I was unable to use this time around. I'd think instead of creating another currency to manage they would stick to a general ticket usable across all events.

In summary, having only purchased a "service pass", relying on help from other players in the community, having a very restricted amount of free time for the event, I am very satisfied with the return on my purchase, and found the new area, items offered, the story, and cooperative player event exceeding my expectations.

Thanks go to the GMs for providing all this fun and the players for coming together and helping each other!

Sunday, October 29th, 2017, 2:37:52 PM


Or make the darn things useful? Why is it the hearts last year even at the initial point were incredibly powerful and this year's EG item is pratically junk? I can't conceivably find a use for this item, can you? (I'm seriously asking here).

Even the act of taking it out and using it, which would presumably mean I would need to stow my shield or weapon away is actually net negative in terms of mechanical benefit than just not using it at all.