If you look back at the last few months, you may have mixed feelings about some of the releases. Unbalanced trade removal; Bounty Hunter and Clan Wars; LootShare; the Assist System; the Grand Exchange: these were all massive changes affecting a huge number of people. They were so big, in fact, and released in such a short period of time, that we could not get everything right while also making every player happy. We certainly aimed to do so, but we still came some way short.
We decided, soon after their release, that we could address many of your problems with them. Your feedback on the Forums has really helped, and we have even been able to consult you on a number of instances. This led to the 'Future Changes to Recent Updates' in January: a list of our proposed changes to our recent content. It's been a while since we released that newspost, and many of you seem worried that we've forgotten about the changes to LootShare, Grand Exchange and our other releases. Well, we can assure you that we haven't forgotten. In fact, we have allocated nearly half of our content developers to getting these recent updates back on track!
We plan to release a State of Play regularly, to give you a real idea of how the most anticipated updates are progressing, so keep your eyes peeled for more news in the future.
The green progress bars will give you an idea of how close each project is to being released.
Grand Exchange Improvements
Some changes to the Grand Exchange interfaces are entering the final stages of testing. We've listened to your feedback and we are finishing off interface changes to really speed up your selling and purchasing.
We also promised 'a new web page...which will allow you to track item prices over a long period of time'. This is very close to completion and is currently with our Quality Assurance team. This will be a comprehensive and very visual means for you to find out item values and compare them with others, or see how they fluctuate over time. As you can imagine, we believe that this will be really useful to any merchants out there.
Finally, the Grand Exchange pricing errors are being fixed in what will be an ongoing process. We have staff members dedicated to collating information from the Forums and in-game sources, so you'll see amendments occurring as the weeks go on. Here are a few examples of pricing issues that we have remedied:
- We've allowed Summoning items to be traded on the Exchange for a wider range of prices over a prolonged period, and allowed their prices to adjust with their large number of sales.
- We have made the price of items such as jewellery, poisoned dagger and clockwork toys behave more consistently, so that you are always getting a fair deal.
- We've allowed a more generous range of prices on the Exchange for those items that are sold in shops.
- We've also fixed a number of bugs that have been highlighted in the Forums, such as how potions behave.
We'd also like to remind you that the 'Grand Exchange Price Feedback' thread in our Suggestions Forum is the place for any constructive feedback you have on our market prices.
One of the most requested improvements will be to our LootShare feature, which has been worked on solidly since its announcement in the 'Future Changes to Recent Updates'. We will be calling these changes 'CoinShare'. With it activated, a clan will not receive a high-value item as a monster drop; instead, the item will be put on the Grand Exchange at the median price. The team of LootSharers will immediately gain a share of coins equal to that item's lowest market value, without waiting for that item to sell on the Exchange. This is in final testing, at a similar stage to the Grand Exchange tweaks.
Currently at a briefing stage is the item-lending feature. It has been incredibly difficult to find that balance between versatility and stopping cheaters from abusing it. We believe we've found a solution that achieves this, and we will give you more news in future articles.
New PvP Minigame
Clan Wars and Bounty Hunter did a fair job of offering new PvP gaming choices, but they weren't without their problems; in particular, Bounty Hunter was dominated by large clans, which just wasn't how we intended Bounty Hunter to be used. We are aware that this week's Bounty Hunter changes leaves only Clan Wars for multi-way fighters, which does not offer the level of danger and reward that Bounty Hunter did. We can reveal that changes to the Clan Wars arena are at a proposal stage and future multi-way minigames are planned, all of which should alleviate these concerns.
It must also be said that Clan Wars and Bounty Hunter were never alone intended as a replacement for the Wilderness. We saw them as the first in a series of PvP minigames, with other games being briefed that would attempt to cater for all types of PKer. Well, the next PvP minigame is now finishing development and entering the first round of quality assurance. We're certainly very excited about this single-way, one-versus-one safe minigame.
When we started work on Summoning, we made the decision that it would be interesting, fun and rewarding, while also taking longer than most skills to level up. We feel now that we weren't so hot on the 'rewarding' aspect, which has been an obstacle to many people enjoying the skill. Despite a few tweaks, we still don't believe that it is as rewarding as it can be, and the worst thing we can do is to keep making tweaks every week for a long period of time.
So, we have decided to rebalance Summoning and release it with Summoning Batch #2. This rebalancing is about 20% complete and we will keep you informed about how it progresses. As you can imagine, this is a huge priority for us, so you can expect this percentage to rise rapidly.
We do appreciate that all of these changes are taking a while, and that a lot of people are urgently awaiting them. So, we are treating them as a priority. This is not the last you will see of progress reports like this, either: you can expect similar updates in the future, as we make more of an effort to inform you about the state of play...