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Ultima Online: Devs answers common questions E-mail
Monday, 05 March 2007
A new Five on Friday has been published on the UO website. The questions answered this time are about the 3D client, how the bank is coded and Kingdom Reborn beta.



"Is it true that your character always has the bank box info with them all the time and the more junk you have the slower your character is?"
Short answer: yes and no.

Yes, your bank box info is with your character all the time - but it won't affect any speed other than your login speed, and it may affect lag across server lines. It's not actually accessed at any other time.

--

The gargoyle/character slot/quest issue:
For those who haven't caught up on the gossip from the New York Town Hall, a question was asked if there was going to be a quest to convert humans/elves to gargoyles, and Darkscribe said there were no such plans at this time - and there were also no plans at the moment for a seventh character slot. This, understandably, caused a few... discussions, shall we say?

I'm reading all of the threads on the issue, and counting all of your feedback, but I do want to remind everyone that Stygian Abyss is quite a ways out, and many things may change between now and then. There are various challenges, both technical and in design, in adding a new race, and when we're a little closer to launch, we'll be able to discuss those challenges in more detail. In the meantime, please be patient - we'll come back to this topic in a few months, but forgive us if we don't say anything more about it right now.

--

"Will we still be able to play with the old 2D or 3D client after Kingdom Reborn launches?"
This is one of the questions on the UOKR FAQ, and the answer has changed somewhat.

The 2d client will continue to be supported for quite a while after KR's launch, and after Stygian Abyss's launch - although you'll need KR to run SA. However, the 3D client will not be supported with KR. As the servers are upgraded to handle KR, the existing 3d client will no longer work on them. (This means that Origin will be the first server to lose legacy 3D support - see the next question.)

--

"When's KR Beta? I wanna get into KR beta!"
Yeah, this is a repeat, but I think you'll like it a bit better this week, because I have some info (if still no actual dates.) Here's the current beta plan (version 8, to give you some perspective on just how often it changes):

First Stage: Internal testing. This phase started with our QA team, and we expanded the testing pool to include everyone who works for EA Mythic - from California to Virginia. We're in this stage right now, and have been for a month or so.

Second Stage: Small-scale beta. This will start off with a very few previous beta testers (folks we've noticed give good feedback and plenty of it) and expand to include folks who sign up on the soon-to-be-available signup page, with preference given to our more experienced players. This stage will be bound by an NDA, and will begin shortly (I'd give you a date, but it literally changes every time I ask.)

Third Stage: Origin Test. At this point we'll let in some more folks, lift the NDA, and let the beta testers loose on just one live server.

Fourth Stage: Beta - all servers upgraded. We'll still be restricting how many KR players there are, but all servers will be upgraded to allow KR logins at this point. We'll ramp up to some pretty hefty numbers of players in this stage.

Fifth Stage: Launch! KR will be free to download for everyone.

Hopefully this will give y'all some perspective on where we are and where we plan to go. I know it looks kinda long - in the meantime, check out the Swamp Dragon and the grid-style inventory!

--

"Why did I have to wait so long to talk to a GM?" part 2
Sanya said, at the New York gathering, that we are still trying to fill CS openings in Virginia with passionate, committed UO players. (CSRs are trained to work on all EA Mythic products, but in practice they focus on the game they know best. If we fill all the UO positions before you apply, you'll be assigned to the team where the need is greatest. Please ask where you might fit at your interview!) We're especially looking to fill shifts where the petition-to-CSR ratio is most unbalanced. If you have CS experience and a love for UO, apply here. And hey, drop Sanya a line at sweathers AT ea DOT com and let her know you applied, so she can ask the head of CS to look for you in the pile!

--

The New York Town Hall was very cool, by all reports - Sanya took a couple of pictures. Thanks to everyone who came out!
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