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January 01

Ye Smalle Patche – 12th January 01 – nocturne
Latest Game Update :: Magic in Towns, Hero/Evil Changes
The following changes will be updated.
  • Magery :: Certain spells that were previously castable in justice regions will no longer be castable in justice regions. These spells include: Wall of Stone, Poison Field, Mass Curse, Paralyzation Field, Chain Lightning, Energy Field, Meteor Storm, Earthquake, Blade Spirits, and Energy Vortex.
  • Due to conflict with the faction system, the Hero/Evil system will be disabled on the Siege Perilous shard.
Nobles Hire Henchmen
Latest Game Update :: Nobles Hire Henchmen
Nobles and Seekers of Adventure will have the following changes:
  • When a Noble or Seeker of Adventure is attacked outside of town limits, they will call “henchmen” for assistance.
  • Henchmen that can come to the aid of a Noble or Seeker of Adventure will have increased fighting ability. Some will use archery.
  • The Noble or Seeker of Adventure cannot be killed until the henchmen are dealt with (killed).
  • Henchmen will carry some of the gold from the noble or seeker of adventure as payment for coming to their rescue.
  • After a short time, the henchmen will leave the noble or seeker of adventure and return from where they came.
Unlisted Changes –
  • Fishing – Added “a big fish”. Also, you no longer re-equip whatever was in your hand when you are done fishing. When you cast a line, your fishing pole becomes equipped and stays equipped (like your spellbook when spellcasting). Entering combat with a fishing pole checks wrestling and parrying.
  • Newbie items – Starting Equipment changed.


On True Rares – 01st January 01 – nocturne
Baja : Before
Baja : Before
Baja : After
Baja : After
Napa
Napa

Gods, I am so sick of losing my stuff.

Since it’s the New Year, I decided it’d be cool to open a museum, since I have maybe twenty True Rares on Napa Valley. I was the first person on the shard to reach Buc’s Den, among other places, and since UOR, where they put back everything, you can see that I have everything in the Buc’s Provisioners.

Of course, after logging in, my full bankbox is down to 88 items. All my True Rares were gone, except the hanging flowers (one of each of the four designs, inverted facing, unstackable, I think I got them from Deceit).

I don’t play on Napa, and I haven’t seen my rares since I sold off two folded sheets on the third of December (I have already emailed the guy to warn him of what could happen).

As expected, a GM said nothing could be done, and no, there is no one else I can talk to. No, my account was not hacked. I have millions of gold on other shards; I have two towers and a castle on this account. No hacker will take just the True Rares and leave the rest be.

So I log into Baja, to check on my other True Rares, and sure, enough, gone. The pictures above were from Baja, where I got the items from the house in the Hedge Maze. Interestingly, the scales, also from the Maze, didn’t evaporate.

To put things into perspective, True Rares are worth $50 to $100 on eBay, depending on the desirability of the item and the shard it’s on.

Bankboxes are supposed to be sacrosanct. The last time this happened, I lost items on four shards, including a full set of potted plants, lots of last year’s Christmas gifts, and a pair of tent deeds on Europa; about ten to twenty True Rares on Balhae, and lots of other stuff I blocked out of my memory. I can’t decide which is worse, the GM saying stuff doesn’t disappear from bankboxes, or emailing every last uo.com address I know of and not getting a reply besides the form reply from support@uo.com.

Ironically, the True Rares I locked down on Balhae (true mandrake, ginseng and nightshade) are still there. I always thought bankboxes were more secure than houses. You can take a look at those three by logging into Balhae; it’s the house next to Trinsic Moongate, on Felucca.

From getting my house looted through a bug, to losing my True Rares, twice. I think I lost more money than I would get if I sold everything off now, castle and all.

I don’t believe I have a mark on my account, I have never once been jailed. And yet, and here we come to the crux of the matter, OSI will not help you. Not with anything. It is not that they can not, it is that they will not.

I’m not going to quit UO, they can have my twenty dollars a month, I’ve spent too much time and I still have fun collecting my rares. But something, a certain spark, has gone out. I can no longer say “yeah, I was the first person on Baja to go to the Hedge Maze, and I have this bottle to prove it.”

I remember when that spark was a fire (the Ultima Collection, UO beta), and all the little milestones where it slowly died out. I liken OSI now to the virtue shrines on Felucca, a twisted mirror of how things should be.

And that is why I probably won’t be first in line for UO3D, why I won’t be playing UO2 or any other game by OSI.

07:00 020101

On Those Rares – 04th January 01 – nocturne
In the aftermath of my disappearing rares, Melantus posted two replies to the thread I started on the UO.com Message Boards, basically saying “Yes, it happens.” and “Please stop fighting.”

No reply yet from support@uo.com. I’m expecting their form “We cannot replace items, however they are lost.” reply. The GM I spoke to, of course, went “I cannot help you with that.”

To those others who lost rares, particularly those with sentimental value, I feel your pain.

As I said in the original post, OSI needs a major policy change. ’nuff said.

Holiday Ticks Down & Vet Rewards Up (!) – 06th January 01 – nocturne
FYI :: Holiday Ticket Distribution Deactivation –
The distribution of holiday tickets will be disabled on all shards following their Monday, January 8th scheduled maintenance period (local server time). This change will not affect existing holiday tickets or holiday trees. We will post a schedule for the deactivation of holiday trees at a future date.
FYI :: Publish Update – Veteran Rewards –
We are currently targeting to release the Veteran Rewards to accounts aged 36 months or older on the Sonoma shard on Monday, January 8th. The rewards will be activated following the shard’s return from regularly scheduled maintenance.

We will monitor the Sonoma shard for any issues that may arise. We are tentatively scheduling to release Veteran Rewards to accounts 12 and 24 months of age or older (in addition to the 36 month accounts) following regularly scheduled maintenance on Wednesday, January 10th. A release schedule for the remaining shards will be available on Friday, January 12th.

Veteran rewards are given out based on account age, not characters, so please remember that if you are not a regular Sonoma player, and choose to accept a veteran reward on the Sonoma shard, you will not be able to transfer this award to your regular shard, and you will have debited your overall reward choices.

More information regarding specific details of the various types of rewards, and qualifications for getting those rewards, can be found in Testing for Next Update.
A friendly reminder –
Characters will just stop receiving tickets upon logging in. You do not have to use up your holiday tickets now (but don’t quote me on this one, OSI happens). Last year’s tickets still work, so I doubt they will remove functionality.

If you don’t play on Sonoma, don’t choose rewards there! Unlike Test Center, this one counts.

On a side note, why is Sonoma always the unofficial Test Center ?

True Brit. – 07th January 01 – nocturne
GameSpy asks 20 Questions with Richard Garriott, here’s a quote –
GameSpy: What was the most rewarding thing about working on the Ultima series?

Richard Garriott: Riding the birth and development of a new industry as seen by the evolution of one product. Things like starting from making games at my parent’s house in my closet; through starting a garage company, still developing solo; sharing the development process with others; nearly going out of business; building games which eventually took 50 people and millions of dollars. Wow, what a ride!

Money Sink Anyone ? – 08th January 01 – nocturne
Check out Home-Related Tools for the word on interior decorators, and Hairstylists for neon hair. (All from the UO3D Alpha Test Shard.)

More on FYI – 09th January 01 – nocturne
FYI :: Client Patch 2.0.4c –
We are targeting to release client patch 2.0.4c later this evening. The client patch will include the following:
  • The default desktop feature will be temporarily disabled.
  • Moving the mouse over a player or creature status bar, regardless of peace or war mode, will now highlight the associated player or creature. This effect will be the same as if you moved your mouse over the creature or player while in war mode.
  • Compatibility files for Ultima Online: Third Dawn will be added to the UO directory.
  • An outdated sound file will be removed.
Additionally, a client crash caused by using the 2D client on the Alpha Third Dawn shard has been fixed.
FYI :: Ethereal Ostards and Veteran Rewards –
Players with non-T2A clients who select the ethereal ostard as a veteran rewards will be unable to access/view their reward (as it is not supported by the original UO client). If you are a three-year veteran with a non-T2A supported game client, you will need to upgrade your client. Information on upgrading is available through the Ultima Online website at https://secure.owo.com/order/order.asp.
FYI :: Veteran Rewards Update – Volunteer Accounts –
An issue relating to account age and volunteer accounts has been identified in the veteran rewards system and is currently being addressed. At this time, accounts that at any time were compensated for volunteer duties (Counselors, Seers, etc.) may not return the correct account age. We are currently working to resolve this issue and expect to have a fix updated in the next several days. However, these accounts may not reflect the correct account age following the release to the Sonoma shard on Monday, January 8th.

The End of Evil (at least on SP) – 10th January 01 – nocturne
Testing for Next Update :: Magic in Towns, Hero/Evil Changes
[120101] Changes to magic in justice areas and the disabling of the Hero/Evil system.
FYI :: Publish Update –
We will be publishing the design changes and bug fixes listed in Testing for Next Update to all shards. This publish will be active on all North American shards (excluding Siege Perilous) following their Wednesday, January 10th (local server time) maintenance period, barring any unforeseen downtimes. The publish will be active on the all remaining shards following their Friday, January 12th (local server time) maintenance period.

This publish will not include Veteran Rewards on shards other than Sonoma. We will release a schedule for the activation of Veteran Rewards on remaining shards at a later date. The 12 and 24 month Veteran Rewards will be enabled on the Sonoma shard following this maintenance period.

Important! Veteran rewards are given out based on account age, not characters, so please remember that if you are not a regular Sonoma player, and choose to accept a veteran reward on the Sonoma shard, you will not be able to transfer this award to your regular shard, and you will have debited your overall reward choices.

All changes will be added to Latest Game Updates once the publish is active on all shards.
FYI :: Client Patch 2.0.4d –
We are currently releasing client patch 2.0.4.d to all shards. This patch fixes a crash issue with boat/house placement.

Fishie Fishie Fishie – 11th January 01 – nocturne
Fishermen’s Guild Looks like there is a new rare introduced with the last patch. Get this, “a big fish”, it looks like a valorite coloured fish and weighs a 100 stones. I’ve spent two hours so far with my GM Fisher trying to get one but I suspect that it comes with the publish (only the US shards have received the latest update). We will get a pic up ASAP.

Ye Smalle Patche – 12th January 01 – nocturne
Patch January 01

Vet Rewards and LS – 12th January 01 – nocturne
FYI :: Client 2.0.4.d Update –
We are currently releasing an additional file for client patch 2.0.4.d. This patched file fixes a crash issue with Veteran Rewards options displayed in Chinese language.
FYI :: Veteran Rewards – Volunteer Update –
The issues affecting account age and volunteer accounts has been resolved. Accounts that were at any time compensated for volunteer duties (Counselors, Seers, etc.) will now reflect the correct account age and be offered the appropriate veteran rewards. This change will resolve a similar issue with accounts paid for by Gametime coupons.

The veteran rewards system is currently inactive. We will update you again once the system is active.
FYI :: Lake Superior Move Update –
On Thursday, January 11th, we are targeting to open a test shard using the upgraded East Coast server designated to house the Lake Superior shard. This shard will open originally as a “clean” world – with no restored backup from Lake Superior. We expect to leave the shard, named “Test Lake Superior”, in place in this manner for approximately 24 hours. Please note, there is a possibility the shard will not be opened on Thursday, but will be held internal until the Lake Superior backup is restored on Friday.

On Friday, January 12th, we will bring this shard down and restart it with a current backup of the Lake Superior shard. However, the shard will still be considered a test shard until Tuesday, January 16th. During the weekend, current Lake Superior players are encouraged to test connectivity to the shard and post any feedback to the Ultima Online Message Boards in the Connectivity topic.

Barring any unforeseen issues, we are targeting to bring both the Test Lake Superior shard and the current Lake Superior shard down for 3 – 4 hours while we complete the transition process. A starting time for this final move will be announced at least 24 hours in advance.

A schedule for the Great Lakes shard move to the same facility will be announced in the near future.
Fishermen’s Guild Melantus confirms the existence of the big fishie with “It’s a big fish, and heavy too. Nice catch :)”. Here’s what we know, so far:
  • “a big fish” can be fished up with 80+ Fishing (unconfirmed).
  • It weighs a 100 stones.
  • It falls to your feet when you fish it up, regardless of whether there is space in your backpack.
  • We are unsure if you need to be in deep-water to fish it up, but everyone fishes in deep-water anyway.
  • It is very rare, rarer than messages in bottles.
  • It has no real use, so far.
  • Cutting it yields 4 fish stacks, like any normal fish.
  • If you stack them, and remove one from the stack, the one that was removed becomes labeled “a fish”. This is an old bug, if you stack Valentine candy with names like “Sweet Dreams”, the one removed will be labeled “a muffin”.
Current hopes are being about to mount it, since the game has art for mounted fishes. Being able to mark it, “a big fish caught by The Fisher King”. Personally I want to see shadow coloured fish.

Another unlisted fishing change is that you no longer re-equip whatever was in your hand when you are done fishing. When you cast a line, your fishing pole becomes equipped and stays equipped (like your spellbook when spellcasting). Entering combat with a fishing pole checks wrestling and parrying.

Vet Rewards On Sonoma (Again) – 13th January 01 – nocturne
FYI :: Sonoma Rewards Activation –
The Veteran Rewards system will be active on the Sonoma shard following its Saturday morning maintenance. At that time, eligible players will again be able to chose rewards. Also, the issue with regards to AR and the veteran rewards will be resolved at that time.

Please note that rewards taken on the Sonoma shard will count against the total rewards you can take. If you do not play on the Sonoma shard, you should not chose rewards on that shard as any rewards you do take cannot be transfered to your characters on the shard(s) you do play on.
FYI :: Sonoma Veteran Rewards Update –
We have resolved the issues affecting Veteran Rewards on the Sonoma shard, and will be reactivating the rewards system. However, it is possible that during a brief period before rewards were deactivated, some players may have had the opportunity to receive more veteran rewards than they should have.

While we do have extensive tracking systems in place for Veteran Rewards, the issues that affected the Sonoma shard also affected the tracking systems, rendering the data from that short time period unavailable. While it would be technically possible to remove the Veteran Rewards system entirely and delete all rewards, and/or identify many of the accounts that may have more than their fair share of rewards, the resource drain in doing so would not only hold the release of Veteran Rewards to the remaining servers, but would require resources currently committed to Ultima Online: Third Dawn – resulting in a delay of that product as well. Without this data, we are unable to determine the number of accounts that may have received extra rewards during this time period.

After discussing the delay of other systems and the Third Dawn product against the possibility that some players may have received additional rewards during a short period of time, we have determined that the best possible solution at this time is to continue forward with the Veteran Rewards publish. The issue that caused this bug in the rewards system has been resolved and should not affect future publishes to other shards. At this time, we will not be addressing the possible extra rewards, but will continue to schedule the release of Veteran Rewards to the remaining shards.
So, if you happen to play on Sonoma and ended up with two of each reward, congrats to you. I guess sometimes there are perks to being Test Center 2.

“a big fish” – 13th January 01 – nocturne
Fishermen’s Guild a big fish 8212 fish steaks, 6 special fishing nets, 4 treasure maps and 7 MiBs later, “Your fishing pole bends as you pull a big fish from the depths!”. These guys are rare. Still no idea if they have any use, yet.

Getcha Newbie Katana! – 14th January 01 – nocturne
Starting Equipment page updated, with the new newbie items. You know, if they had let people get Christmas ticks when you create a character, you would be able to start with a Bell, Book and Candle. That would have been pretty cool.

It’s Contest Time! – 15th January 01 – nocturne
Okay, I am offering a million gold on any shard to the first person that tells me where furs spawn.

Payment will be made as soon as I verify the info. (It may take slightly longer on some shards as I’d have to sell some rares to raise the gold – or you can take the rares, your choice).

Note: Bears and hinds two years ago do not count. I want to know where they are spawning now.

Added Note: Yes, furs are spawning. I suspected as much since the number of furs for sale seemed to have increased the past few weeks, but after seeing a fur on Hokuto recently, I know for sure. The simple fact is Hokuto came up after bears and hinds stopped spawning fur and started spawning hides. I have never seen any on Hok prior to UO:R either.
Check your Player-Owned Vendors! There seems to be a bug going around that allows people to re-price armor in bags.

Furry Rewards – 16th January 01 – nocturne
We can pretty much confirm that fur does, indeed, spawn post-UOR. Where and how, unfortunately, is still doubtful. There are lots of rumours as to the spawn location, and no one can confirm the frequency. Do monthly rares still spawn post-UOR ? Damned if I know. Four people claimed to have picked it up, none more than once. The million gold is still up for grabs.

In the meantime, vet rewards are finally here.
FYI :: Publish Update – Veteran Rewards –
We are currently targeting to release the Veteran Rewards to accounts aged 36 months or older on all non-Japanese shards on Wednesday, January 17th. The rewards will be activated on these shards following their return from regularly scheduled maintenance. We are working to resolve a localization issue on the Japanese shards and will activate rewards to these shards on a separate schedule if necessary.

We will monitor the activated shards for any issues that may arise. We are tentatively scheduling to release Veteran Rewards to accounts 12+ and 24+ months of age or older (in addition to the 36+ month accounts) following regularly scheduled maintenance on Thursday, January 18th (local shard time). Shards which do not have scheduled Thursday morning maintenance will receive their rewards following maintenance on Friday, January 19th. As with the 36+ month activation, this schedule includes only non-Japanese shards.

Important! Veteran rewards are distributed by account, not character. You are granted a total number of rewards to be divided among any characters on your account. If you do not normally play on a shard, you SHOULD NOT choose to take rewards on that shard. Veteran rewards will not be transferred between shards.

“a fish” – 17th January 01 – nocturne
Fishermen’s Guild a big fish Calandryll posted to the UO.com Message Boards, concerning the big fish
The use for the big fish isn’t in the game yet… so save them for now.

Also, probably better not to stack them either. When you stack them, they become “a fish”. It’s something we’ll probably resolve, but not at this time.
No ETA. Knowing OSI, don’t hold your breath. Also, we have confirmed that the big fish can be fished up with 82 fishing (though it’s likely 80+).

As for the Vet Rewards, when you log in, you may have to wait before the selection menu comes up, after your selection, you may have to wait a bit more before your gift arrives. Patience is a virtue (even if it’s not a Britannian one).

Lum Quits lumthemad.net, other stuff. – 18th January 01 – nocturne
Biggest news so far this year is that Lum the Mad has announced his withdrawal from lumthemad.net. You can read his parting words here. Fare thee well, Lum. You will be missed.
The official word on Hair Stylists. Our coverage can be found here.
General Testing :: Hair Stylist NPC
Hair Dye [160301] Hairstyling
General Testing :: Changes to facet and town moongate travel
[030201] Changes to facet and town moongate travel
Calandryll posted to the UO.com Message Boards, regarding the extra vet rewards
Apologies for not posting sooner, been helping track this down, as well as working on other issues.

First, thank you to everyone who posted here and e-mailed me with information regarding the Vet Reward System issues. That information allowed us to isolate what was happening and we believe we have a fix in place. If anyone does get an option for more rewards than they should be eligible for, please e-mail me. All of the information will reviewed and explored, just as the information you posted below was.

As to the requests for server reverts. After investigating the logs for veteran rewards, we’ve concluded that less than 1% of all accounts got more rewards than they should have. Given that, we do not feel reverting the shards is a viable option. To revert the shards over 1% of accounts, thus possibly hurting the other 99% of accounts who gained skill, placed houses, made transactions, and gained in any way from their play, would not be a good or fair solution. Likewise, deleting all of the current rewards and starting over would also not be viable since many players may have already sold or traded rewards for other items.

Will the extra rewards lower the gold value of these items? Perhaps, but in truth, the veteran rewards system was not meant to boost the rares market. The system was designed to give items to the players that have been with UO for long periods of time. Do a few extra rewards devalue the rewards themselves? Not in our estimation. My ethereal horse is just as valuable to me, regardless of how many rewards are on the shard.

Again, I want to thank everyone for their information during all of this, the information you presented was critical to our ability to track down and resolve the issues.
Also, Melantus reminds us
Colored hides will -not- make colored leather. They are a result of colored leather being turned back into hide form, however the color will not transfer back to leather armor form without the use of a leather dye tub.

Nymphs! – 19th January 01 – nocturne
In totally unrelated news, nymphs!

Jinx points us over to Elemental Saga, from the creators of Dark Ages. I know a guy who prefers Dark Ages to UO. It looked good, admittedly, but I tend not to trust anything that has no visible source of revenue (no fees, no ads, err… will my characters be here a month from now ?).

Lots of eye-candy, in the Final Fantasy style (feel free to correct me on this, I never played FF). Very little on the story-telling, it amazes me how a company can afford artists but not writers. The company’s Korean, btw, though that’s hardly an excuse when you intend to penetrate America. Come to think of it, if anybody wants an English website, learn bloody English, doesn’t matter if you’re American or Korean.

But anyways, nymphs! The Salamander is on my desktop right now.
What’s New :: Third Dawn Beta – Coming Soon! –
Be the first on your block to experience the world of Ultima Online: Third Dawn – your opportunity to join the UO: Third Dawn Beta Test is coming soon!

We’ll be launching the official UO: Third Dawn Beta Test in the next several weeks, and will provide at least 48 hour advance notice prior to the opening of the Beta CD website. Once the website is open, a limited amount of 30,000 beta CDs will be available for order.

During the ordering period, players with active Ultima Online accounts (in good standing), will be able to order an Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta CD for the price of shipping and handling. Players participating in the Beta test will be required to sign a Beta Tester Confidentiality agreement.

Additional details on the Beta signup process will be posted in the near future. Please note, this is a closed beta test, and there will be additional open beta opportunities at a later date.
Veteran Reward news is scattered all over the place (We’ve got issues!), rather than a direct quote, here’s the summary –
  • Sonoma :: All released. A lot of players get bonuses.
  • Other Shards, except Japan :: 3-year rewards released, January 17.
  • Europa and Drachenfels :: Disabled, January 19.
  • Japanese Shards :: 3-year rewards scheduled to be released, January 19. It’s January 20 and no sign yet.
  • All Shards :: 1- and 2-year rewards tentatively scheduled for release, January 24. SP, January 26.
House Decoration Tool in testing (I guess that means we may see it before UO3D). Our coverage can be found here.
General Testing :: House Decoration Tool
an interior decorator [160301] Interior Decorator

On Purple Items – 20th January 01 – nocturne
Tyrant himself had this to say about the recent influx of purple items to hit the streets –
If you have improperly hued items, either destroy them or call a GM to rehue them. They are only created by exploits or bugs. Selling them to other players is definitely not something you want to be caught doing.
So there, now it’s official, purple items are bugged. Don’t buy them, don’t sell them, and don’t make them.
FYI :: Client Patch 2.0.5a –
We are currently releasing client patch 2.0.5a. This patch contains localization files.
FYI :: Client Patch 2.0.5b –
We are currently releasing client patch 2.0.5b. This patch contains additional localization files.

Rewards, Karma, Trophies! Oh My! – 22nd January 01 – nocturne
Testing for Next Update :: Karma Locking
[030201] Karma Locking
Testing for Next Update :: Fixes to the Faction System
[030201] Various fixes and changes to the Faction System.
Testing for Next Update :: Various Fixes and Changes
[030201] Various Fixes and Changes published.
In a surprise move, OSI releases information on Taxidermy Kits before we finish our coverage, which can be found here.
General Testing :: Taxidermy Kits
a taxidermy kit [160301] Taxidermy Kits
FYI :: Veteran Rewards Deactivated –
Due to issues with the veteran rewards system, we have deactivated the system on all shards. At this time, we do not have an updated schedule for when they will be reactivated.

We strongly advise players not to participate in selling, trading, or buying existing rewards until further notice.

We will update you again once we have additional information.

Rewards – My 2gp. – 23rd January 01 – nocturne
Following is my post on the UO.com Message Boards, concerning the whole extra rewards thing –
Time for my 2gp.

OSI won’t do a revert. It’s been too long and because of that, people will quit. 3 year players that quit are a bad thing.

OSI won’t ban anyone. This is, contary to the “ban the xploiter” crowd posting here, FAR REMOVED FROM DUPING.

1. Duping is difficult. You have to stack black pearl 6 high, run around it, emote “i 1 m0r3 1337 5h17” exactly 64 times, cast a poison field running E-W, cast a para field running N-S, stand in the center, and insta-log with GM Camping. You do not dupe “by chance”. The extra rewards were given without any actions required by the player.

2. Duping ruined the economy. The rewards don’t. If anything, I like more rewards, it puts the rewards in the hands of more people, which is good.

OSI won’t ban anyone. 3 year players that are banned are a bad thing.

OSI won’t do a reward wipe. A lot of rewards changed hands. Screw the innocent while the sellers keep their gold? People will quit (and we know that’s a bad thing).

What options are left ?

Fix it and release it again. I see this as the most likely course OSI will take, judging from their previous history. OSI has never “righted any wrongs”, they just try their best to make sure it won’t happen again. (Just because it isn’t very good doesn’t mean OSI isn’t trying.)

Give everyone extra rewards. I doubt this will happen, but this has my vote (assuming my vote counts). More people should have rewards, and why not? There’s nothing wrong with everyone having a full set of statues in their house. Really there isn’t. Extra rewards also devalue rewards, which is good.

I don’t see any other alternatives, and I’ve stopped reading anything about rewards because it’s just more of the same “ban the thieves/dupers/exploiters” crap. Do you actually believe OSI will ban someone for taking extra rewards that were given to them as thanks for their 40 months of $10?

And, yes, I believe you when you say you won’t take them if they were offered to you.Gee, I didn’t know so many people look gift horses in the mouth. I guess UO players are more righteous than people in the real world. Must be the whole virtue thing.

For the record, I didn’t get extra rewards. My account is 39 months when it should be more. I only choose one reward option so far, and I have bought/traded for many many more. If given the option to get extra rewards, I would. Without blinking. The extras won’t even come close to the stuff I’ve lost through my house getting looted (OSI did nothing even when the exploiters were known), much less the True Rares I lost when they evaporated from my secure bankboxes. In two seperate incidences, months apart. We put up with a lot of crap in three years of playing, we do deserve more than four rewards.

Does this make me an exploiter? I really don’t think so. I didn’t even join a faction to get my last .4 of Lockpicking. And before you question my integrity, I’ve done dozens of trades, and never had a complaint. This includes houses before secure house trading, and x-shard trades. The opportunity to scam has always been there. The opportunity for extra rewards is in no way a test of moral strength.

Mel on Rewards – 24th January 01 – nocturne
Mel posted the following choice quotes in this long thread
We have just gone over the issue of rewards here and I have some new information for you:

We are not going to delete all of the veteran rewards.

The number of players that got any extra rewards is just a few hundred.

We are planning to set up a series of tests, using the fixes we have applied to the system. These fixes are based upon our lengthy investigation of the situation and the system itself. As more becomes available, I will let you know.
In response to whether it is now safe to buy or sell vet rewards;
No, as previously stated on the site, we still recommend not buying or selling rewards right now.

Spawn Changes, Get’s New Cloak – 25th January 01 – nocturne
FYI :: Client Patch 2.0.6c –
We are targeting to release client patch 2.0.6c this evening. This patch contains additional localization files and resolves some compatability issues with the Third Dawn client.

Note that once you have received this patch, you must completely shut down and restart your Ultima Online client before you will be able to reconnect to the game.
FYI :: Publish Update –
We will be publishing the design changes and bug fixes listed in Testing For Next Update to the Pacific Shard. This publish will be active on Pacific following its Friday, January 26th (local server time) maintenance period, barring any unforeseen downtimes. We will monitor the Pacific shard over the weekend for any problems that might occur. The schedule for publish of these items to the remaining shards will be announced at a later time.
Testing for Next Update :: Spawn Changes
[030201] Changes to how spawn will function within UO.
Here’s a quote from the quarterly update of Live Team Comments, by Leilo –
One of the projects I’m working on right now will focus on all those things that we should have known when we first set foot in Britannia, but didn’t. And that’s where I need your help. If you’re interested, drop me an email and tell me the one, single thing you wish you’d known the first time you played UO.

This, That, and the Other – 26th January 01 – nocturne
What’s New :: Third Dawn Beta Test –
It’s almost time! We are currently targeting to launch the Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta Test signup during the week of January 29th (CST). During that week, we’ll open the Third Dawn Beta CD website where a limited amount of 30,000 beta CDs will be available for order.

We will be opening beta ordering at three different start times throughout a 24-hour period to allow UO customers from around the world the opportunity to order a beta CD at a convenient local time. For each start time, there will be a limit of 10,000 CDs available.

During the ordering period, players with active Ultima Online accounts (in good standing) will be able to order an Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta CD for the price of shipping and handling. Players participating in the Beta test will be required to sign a Beta Tester Confidentiality agreement. This is a closed beta test limited to 30,000 participants. However, there will be additional open beta opportunities at a later date.

We will release specific availability times and dates approximately 24 hours in advance.
FYI
Chesapeake and Atlantic will receive the new publish following extended downtime on Monday, 29th January.

Great Lakes will be down for approximately six hours from 8:00 AM CST on Monday, 29th January to facilitate the move of the server to the East Coast.
Here’s a bunch of quotes from the thread regarding the purposed spawn changes
We changed the code for the spawner. There were some considerations in the old spawner code of systems which no longer exist. We removed those pieces of code to enable us to control the creature spawn more precisely. (i.e. Prevent large concentrations of monsters in certain areas and even out the population in less populated areas.) These changes were not done to prevent spawn “blocking.” That may be addressed later, but for now, we are looking at our new spawner, and we encourage your feedback. – Sage
Well, within UO we have what is called “static” and “dynamic” art. Tree trunks, the ground, and most of the town buildings are all static artwork. The pieces of those items will never move from their spots, and can’t be moved even by a GM. The only way they could move is a patch to the map file.

Dynamic art is able to be moved by a GM, able to be recolored, changed, etc.

So when describing spawn as being dynamic, it means a system that isn’t as rigid and difficult to adjust as a static system. The old system wasn’t really “static” as totally unchangeable but still the word dynamic does describe the new system better.

You should not notice a difference. However it is an improved system, even if you notice no change after it went in. – Melantus
In plain English, they changed the Spawn Engine, making it easier to tweak or entirely revamp spawns, should the need arise. This does not address the “spawn blocking” issue faced by Tamers. If all goes wrong, expect a Lich Lord, a Balron and a Shadow Wyrm camping outside your house the next time you log in your mule.
Melantus posted the following in this thread, regarding Valentine gifts –
I saw some posts regarding valentines gifts, and thought I would post something about them:

We will not be giving out special items or having a special Valentines Shard for this Valentines day. While we enjoy celebrating holidays with our players, time constraints and work load can sometimes take precedence over holiday recognition. With work progressing on UO Third Dawn, Veteran Rewards and various bug fixes, we feel it is best to not add any other items to the current workload.
If they actually fix stuff and give us the promised additions without any bugs, I’d say we’re getting a good deal.

UO3D Beta – 29th January 01 – nocturne
Third Dawn Beta CD Ordering Website
Thank you for your interest in ordering the Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta CD. This webpage will act as your gateway to the ordering process – once the Third Dawn Beta CD’s are available for order, a link will appear at the bottom of this page leading to the actual order form.

To allow UO customers from around the world an opportunity to order beta CD’s at a convenient local time, we will be allowing orders for the CD’s based on the three groups in the following schedule:

Group 1 – 9:00 PM Korea 1/31/00, 6:00 AM Austin 1/31/00, 12:00 PM (noon) London 1/31/00
Group 2 – 6:00 AM Korea 2/1/00, 3:00 PM Austin 1/31/00, 9:00 PM London 1/31/00
Group 3 – 12:00 PM (noon) Korea 2/1/00, 9:00 PM Austin 1/31/00, 3:00 AM London 2/1/00

Each group will be limited to 10,000 Beta CD orders. Should 10,000 CDs not be ordered during a group phase, they will remain available until sold out. However, if you attempt to order a CD and that group of CDs have sold out, you should return to the website at the next scheduled release time.

To order an Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta CD, you must have an active Ultima Online account in good standing. The CD’s are available for the price of shipping and handling in US dollars: $4.95 domestic (US & Puerto Rico), and $6.95 international. Once you have completed your order, you may expect delivery in up to 7 days on domestic orders (up to 21 days international). You will need to provide a Visa, Mastercard, Discover, or AMEX card to complete the ordering process.

Before ordering an Ultima Online: Third Dawn Beta CD, please remember that this game requires 715 megabytes of hard drive space and an 8 MB 3D graphics accelerator or better.

Remember, this is a closed Beta opportunity with a limit of 30,000 CDs. There will be additional opportunities in the future.
Melantus posted the following in this thread, regarding the tormented move of Great Lakes and its subsequent revert –
This was just posted to Shard Issues:

“Great Lakes Revert – An issue which caused the Great Lakes shard to be incorrectly displayed as a Test shard has required that we revert the shard to a backup from early this morning. We regret this development, but feel that to avoid doing so would be unfair to players who have been playing on the shard all day in the assumption that it was a test server and thus would not affect their characters. The shard will be reverted to a backup of approximately 7:45 AM CST, Monday, January 29th.”

As a side note, this was something that was absolutely necessary. Yes, we are all troubled by this but the best course of action to take is to get the problem resolved. We apologize to all the players affected, that might have lost progess on their characters because of this.
According to FYI, GL has already been moved from Texas to the East Coast.
Melantus posted the following in this thread, regarding the tormented issue of Vet Rewards
I just talked to Calandryll about veteran rewards. We are not going to be able to have veteran rewards going again until in/after some time in March. We know this is a long delay and that players are anxious for the rewards. However some additional problems have come up with them and we want to be sure to properly address those problems. Also because of the additional workloads of system critical items, Third Dawn, and some other things, we feel the best course of action to take is to get these items done and tackle veteran rewards when we can do it properly. It means a little more in the delay, but this is the best course of action to take. Needless to say it is a priority of ours, but a priority that we want to get done right (just as with Third Dawn and the other items in the works). As I hear more, I will let you know.

Tip for the Day – 30th January 01 – nocturne
If you pull out a big fish, stack it.

OSI has already fixed this bug on Pac, Atl and Ches, effectively making “stacked” big fish rare.

As a reminder, UO3D beta sign-ups begin today.
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