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Happy five years since the first DBGpocalypse

Discussion in 'EverQuest II General Discussion' started by Endymion, Feb 11, 2020.

  1. Endymion

    Endymion Active Member

    Today marks five years since the first big round of layoffs after the SOE -> DBG transition.

    Some of the people let go that day (from EQ2 specifically, though most teams were affected):
    - Jeffrey Bard (can't remember his alias) - Quests/Lore/Dungeons. Now working on Ashes of Creation
    - Brian Belfield - Senior Programmer - was responsible for updating the graphics engine and terrain editor which made the expansions starting with AoM look a lot better/easier to produce.
    - Akil Hooper (Lyndro) - Creative Director at the time, was also lead designer in the past. Now working on Ashes of Creation.
    - Jason Woerner (Fyreflyte) - Items/Dungeons/Some Raid Encounters. He was brought back on to work on TLE stuff on contract status but that ended a while ago.
    - Michael Ganz (Xelgad) - Items/Class Balance/Systems. Currently working on Magic: Legends.
    - Gary Daugherty - Technical Artist (visual FX and stuff like that). He's been doing contract work since then, primarily for Activision companies like Toys For Bob.
    - Aaron Bisnett (Gnobrin) - Artist. Thankfully working there again!
    - Myself - Programmer.
    - I believe some other artists were let go of too but I can't mentally separate them from the people who just decided to leave on their own.

    - Lots of awesome customer service people.

    Despite my problems with both EQ2 as a game and the job itself, it'll probably always be my favorite job. EQ2 is a flawed gem to be sure, but those tend to be my favorite kinds of games (I absolutely loved FFXI despite thinking it was awful in a lot of ways), so I was happy to be able to contribute to it in some way, and also enjoyed the community interaction aspect (minus some of the angry PMs...). They also let people bring their dogs to work so I got to play with lots of cute dogs each day (Gnobrin and Kaitheel have a particularly cute pair of pups), which was great because I'm a dog lover but couldn't own pets where I lived at the time. :p
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2020
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  2. Meneltel

    Meneltel Active Member

    Thanks for the information, sir.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  3. Tekka

    Tekka That Village Idiot

    5 years already? But it also seems like a lot longer. Thank you for sharing the information about the employees. I genuinely hope those that have been fired, or quit, over the years (even from SOE) have landed in a good spot in life.

    I've never had an issue with The Team in general, with a few exceptions that brought it on with bad behavior. (a lot of management, however, can get <edited for content>.

    But here's to holding on to the good memories and letting the bad ones settle.
    • Agree Agree x 8
  4. Fuli

    Fuli Well-Known Member

    Eq2 was my first mmorpg. My neighbor was playing EQ, and after he described it to me, I thought, "No way. People from all over playing with each other? You get a house??"

    So, i went off looking for it. Ended up at Walmart, and they had EQ2, and I thought, "This one has player vs. player - How cool is that?! (KoS)."

    To this day, my most enjoyable moments were as a lowbie in SH: dungeon crawling, stalking groups of freeps on my ranger, and working out all the quest lines that that threaded through it. That zone was an absolute master peice of design and story telling. And while I was pretty happy with the content up through RoK, the <= level 30 game will be the eq2 I cherish most.

    Despite what the game suffers now, I'll never forget how much fun I had in those days and will always be thankful for all the hard work the devs put in so that I could have a blast :)
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  5. Zynt

    Zynt Member

    What is Domino doing? She was my favorite as far as EQ2 goes. I truly miss her impact on the tradeskill side of the game.
    • Agree Agree x 7
  6. Tekka

    Tekka That Village Idiot

    Troo Lyfe weirdness.

    So, I mentioned r/sketchdaily. I really like one of the artists that posts there, and he mentioned a February challenge hosted by #dungeondrawingdelve. One of the people mentioned from that # is @gnobrin. I thought... what are the freaking chances?

    I click the thingie, and sure enough, It's Aaron "Gnobrin" Bisnett.

    Your daily cosmic /random.
    • Like Like x 4
  7. Fuli

    Fuli Well-Known Member

    She got quickly snatched up by Bioware. As far as I know, she's still there.

    Awesome dev, awesome person. :)
    • Like Like x 5
    • Agree Agree x 3
  8. Tekka

    Tekka That Village Idiot

    I thought I'd share something more than snark and random, for once.

    I started EQ between Kunark and Velious. I pre-ordered EQ2, logged on within minutes of the game going live, and stayed logged in for all of two minutes. Over and over. (just wait, it gets better) Frustrated to the point of teeth grinding and chain smoking, I called the customer service line (who remembers when they had one?) A rather pleasant, and patient, young man helped me sort out the problem. It had something to do with router ports, I think. I'm all but technically illiterate. I was then able to log into the same exhilarating rush - and frustrations - as everyone else.

    I created two characters right off on LDL - A halfling monk, and a ratonga defiler who I really really wanted to be a mystic. Now, this was back before you got vroomed to your 'new' city at the end of the betrayal quest, and there was no Haven. So, I stripped down nekkid so I wouldn't ruin my lowbie (but precious) gear, and leapfrog rez'd over my own trail of corpses through Nektulos Forest - at level 9. Ultimately, I didn't play that character much, since back then watching grass grow in the winter took less time than shaman combat. But MAN I remember that run... and the infinite number of mobs I had to kill to prove myself to my new home, plus the named that were FOREVER camped.

    I've always dipped in and out of games, EQ2 was no different, though until a few years ago, it was the one I always returned to. One of my returns was to the Freeport server, before it officially launched, still in 'Beta' status. I created a little gnome monk (because why not? I always wanted to in EQ) named Bobbin Weave. I spent my AA points in the Agility tree so that I could be 'Monkey Guru' Bobbin Weave, despite everyone and their mother telling me how crap that was, and how I bad I would suck. Cast and I - on his mage, with points spent on the water pet, for which he took as much flack as I did - then proceeded to do all sorts of bosses and dungeons and whatnots that our builds 'couldn't do'.

    I also met my best friend around 4 years ago in EQ2.

    Good times.
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  9. Endymion

    Endymion Active Member

    I always thought it would've been good for her to be in a higher position where she could have more of a say in the overall game design. Not necessarily to have things her way only, but to serve as a counter-balance to the other voices on the team. I think that's one of the problems with the current game -- good ideas don't always start good, they go through a refining process. I don't think there's enough dissenting opinions on the current team, or frankly enough time given how stretched the team is, for that kind of iteration anymore.


    I was personally late to the party when it came to EQ2, I started playing WoW a little while after launch because my friends from back home were playing it and it was a way for me to keep in touch with them after I had moved for college. My college roommate got into EQ2 though, so sometimes I'd watch him play. Eventually I got into Final Fantasy XI, which even though it wasn't my first MMO, was the one to hook me like others' firsts usually do.

    As much as I loved FFXI, I'd sometimes take breaks to play other MMOs, or find other games to play while I had FFXI in the background due to the amount of downtime in that game (lots of camping for monsters with long spawns like EQ). EQ2 was one of those games I tried with the Echoes of Faydwer trial they were running. I met some really cool people during the trial and wanted to keep playing with them, so I bought a digital copy of the game. Only at the time, it didn't come with all of the previous stuff, so I had to go to a physical store to buy it. I think I still have that box around here somewhere...

    Anyway, since FFXI was my main love, I had an on-again off-again relationship with EQ2. Towards the latter portion of my playtime with EQ2 before becoming a developer on it, I met a couple who lived near by me. I actually ended up helping one of them a job as a software test engineer at the company I worked at at the time, and eventually ditched her to go work on the game we met on. :p

    Most importantly though, I met my now-wife the day I got laid off from DBG, and there's no way that would've happened otherwise (I went out somewhere I hated to drive to after work due to traffic, but since we got let go of earlier in the day I went there to kill time / take my mind off things). Life is weird and beautiful, just like EQ2!
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  10. Tekka

    Tekka That Village Idiot

    Cast and I met in Horizons (still around, and now Istaria) 16-ish years ago.

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  11. Endymion

    Endymion Active Member

    Man, I always wanted to try that game. I used to be weird and spend a lot of time reading about MMOs I didn't play because I found MMOs so interesting as a concept, and that was one of them. Lots of fun drama around that game at an executive level too.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  12. Errrorr

    Errrorr Active Member

    Imo this was the moment that EQ2 started plummeting downhill.

    I'd take a guess and say shortly after Akil went, Kander took up being in charge of what happens, and Caith ended up picking up a bunch of stuff you/Fyreflyte/Xelgad would do.
    • Agree Agree x 4
  13. Zynt

    Zynt Member

    I closed beta tested EQ1 and was a member of Legacy of Steel on The Nameless back when we got land line phone calls at 3 in the morning to form up for raids. Spent 52 hours, on and off, on the first Plane of Sky raid. I played a Necro, named Zynt, still do from time to time. I moderated, wrote guides for, and for a while ran Caster's Realm by myself. I was the Nec "casual" class rep and worked closely with Jeb, the official class rep. I really do know Sk8er Gnome personally and Samanna from the Shaman's Crucible is one of my closest friends. I have 6 friends, who I met playing EQ1, that I have met in real life and continue to have personal relationships with including semi-regular visits when I'm travelling.

    Played EQ2 since closed beta as well and started on Blackburrow, now HoF.

    My play time is sporadic due to the nature of my work. I usually take winters off and so for several months I'm a complete Evercrack addict. That and at times I may decide to literally go live in the woods for a month or three. I've thru hiked the AT, the John Muir Trail, The Pacific Crest, Continental Divide from Mexico to Canada, etc. Usually EQ2 gets played the most after I've tried to passively kill myself in a romanticized version of some Man vs. Nature escapade.
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2020
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  14. Tekka

    Tekka That Village Idiot

    I won't lie. It was a hot mess. Over-hyped, over-promised. Not long after release, the owner of the company took all the money and ****ed off. It changed hands a few times, and finally landed with a family/friends group that has maintained it, as well as gradually fixed a lot of the stuff that was wrong with it. Last I checked, it had a small (1-2k) but very loyal fanbase.

    But man when it worked, it worked. There were areas of the world that literally took a server to open - gather materials, process and place them, but in quantities that one person, or even a small group, couldn't manage. Racial unlocks were the same way, it took server participation.

    And you could play a freaking dragon (that did get to fly and have lairs eventually).
    • Agree Agree x 1
  15. Meneltel

    Meneltel Active Member

    Friend and guildie plays that game. If you play free, I think you are limited to level 2 or 10 or something like that, but not sure of the details. My computer had problems playing it and then I had problems with the account to log on so I just kinda junked it, however, I suggest all who are interested to look into it. Apparently the GMs will make world events that if they are not stopped, will alter the world. Like a monster heading to a village or city. If its not kille, that community gets erased from the game. Or something like that!
  16. Tekka

    Tekka That Village Idiot

    I popped in to check how things were going a few years back. At the time, you could have 1 human character and play for free (I don't remember any other restrictions), but if you wanted to play any of the other races, including dragons, you had to subscribe. I think it was 10$. There were other little perks you could pay for too, I think stuff like storage, extra character slots, but it's been a while.

    And yeah, it could slag even good machines back in the day. Especially if you zoned through Tazoon a few times. >.>
  17. Tekka

    Tekka That Village Idiot

    This is the True and Correct Recounting of the An Singular Time I was Suspended for Three Days from the OF:

    Back in the days of RadarX, the idea that if 'they'd just advertise more, it would save the game' came up in a thread. Again.

    For some reason, RadarX decided to add this to the conversation: We are advertising, just not in a place you might see it.

    So I responded: Like the internet?

    My comment was deemed to not be constructive and deleted (I think the thread might be gone, too) and I was sent on a three day vacation.

    You might think this wouldn't be a fond memory. BUT IT IS. To this day, when something ridiculous happens, Cast or I say: Like the internet? and just laaaaugh.

    Thanks RadarX!
    • Funny Funny x 3
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  18. Castegyre

    Castegyre Active Member

    The worst part for me is that when the Next forums were nuked I was driven to reddit to talk about the game that was probably already dead.

    So much porn. :eek:
    • Shocked Shocked x 3
  19. Meneltel

    Meneltel Active Member

    I think I got a 3 day ban for something... no idea what it was and don't care. *shrugs* I went and did other things on the internet.
    • Like Like x 2
  20. Castegyre

    Castegyre Active Member

    I had a few vacations on a couple of my accounts with the two previous mods. I admit I purposefully pushed their buttons, and one of them told me directly I was on their **** list and I didn't care. It was earned.
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