Community Play Event: Ramping Up

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03/17/2012
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With our Community Play Event just around the corner, we wanted to take a quick break from our prep work to give you all a look into the whys and hows of what we’re doing.

Our primary goal with the Community Play Event is to reward the community for their support and input over the past year. From the day we announced our plans to bring TERA to North America, we’ve had an amazing amount of support and input from our fans. What better way to reward those people who’ve been active in our community than to give them a taste of TERA to whet their appetite? We want our core group of super fans to see where we are currently, and to give them a sneak peek at what’s to come. We at En Masse also get the added benefit of testing some of our brand new hardware and pieces of our live operations for future events.

A lot goes into planning an event—even a small-scale one. There are steps and procedures we have to go through whether 400 people log in or 40,000. There’s scheduling and planning, hardware testing of our servers, network testing for client/server connections, client testing, localization tests, patching update checks, downloader and installer testing, and that’s just the beginning of the game side! Our Community team has been planning newsletters and articles, setting up our forum, and a host of other items. Our Operations and Platform teams have been prepping the back-end server infrastructure and account management (without which we’d be unable to play). It takes everyone working together to execute a gameplay event, but the end result is worth it.

Sure there are a lot of technical features we test during the play session and the community gets to experience the latest North American version, but I think the biggest bonus to putting on an event like this is logging in and watching players experience our game and really love it. Seeing players enjoy TERA fires me up to make the game even better. If you were chosen to participate in the Community Play Event, log in and have a blast. It’s our thanks to you for your continued support.

If you didn’t make it into this round, don’t worry—we have more events planned and can’t wait to give everyone who wants play TERA a chance to experience it firsthand. 

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Gamescom and TERA

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03/17/2012
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We packed our bags and headed out for Cologne, Germany, to demo TERA for North American Press at GamesCom 2011.

First of all, this show is huge! The halls were packed with gamers from all over the world, anxious to get their hands on as many games as possible, and we were pumped to bring some TERA along with us. You could feel the excitement, and players could literally be heard storming down the hallways to fill the expo hall at the start of each day.

The demo we gave was an overview of what TERA is—fast, fun, and action-packed, but also with the depth of a massive world with a multi-layered, rewarding story, plus more. So how do you do all of that in about 20 minutes?

First, we focused on the action by showing exciting game elements like combat, combos, and BAMs. Then we hit them with our overarching story, covering 80+ zones with 600+ monsters, etc. Then it was time to demonstrate all of it together with one of the toughest five-man runs we have had to date.

The risk of wiping was always there and the pressure on me as the healer, well, definitely kept things interesting. I’d like to say that the German keyboard was my kryptonite but no excuses! I was often running around like a mad man, throwing out heals, missing heals, and even resurrecting a few comrades who’d died (mostly Chager, the tank). Trust me when I say to all of the healers out there, you definitely have your work cut out for you.

We also offered a peek into the future development of TERA, in our server vs. server invasions. This will combine PvE and PvP elements in a unique way that will engage all types of players. We went into further details surrounding the mystery of the argons, the fierce and deadly enemies that players will band together to fight off and keep from overthrowing the Valkyon Federation.

Outside of the show, we had the opportunity to meet up with some of the TERA community. You guys are always so passionate and excited to geek out with us about anything and everything gaming. We really appreciate your support, and it’s always great to get a reminder about what we are doing this for. This is the reason that we stick to our guns on certain features and the reason we are working hard to not only make the best MMO out there, but a complete game that all of you will enjoy at launch.

Overall, it was great fun and we’re gearing up to welcome some of you at our offices next weekend during PAX. I hope to see you then and can’t wait to get TERA in your hands soon. 

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TERA Short Story Published: The Amaranthine Heart

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03/17/2012
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When they found me, I was passed out in a blind alley behind Myrenia’s place in Dusk Street. I’d been heading for my rented room and stopped to clear my spinning head, but that last tankard of Myrenia’s Essenian brandy had gotten the best of me. I’d curled up in a corner between two cozy stone walls instead and closed my eyes.

“Get up, Madoc.” Jabiir punctuated his command with a kick to my ribs. Amani have big, businesslike feet. With claws.

“Back off, Jabiir!” I came to my feet in one well-practiced motion, nearly wrenching my arms from their sockets as I reached behind my back for my swords. Gone. Pawned to a baraka banker with an eye for fine Kaiator steel. In the absence of two razor edges to do my talking, I settled for “Ow!”

“We’ve got orders to give you more and better, human.” That was Nirix, Jabiir’s partner in crime enforcement; a black-haired high elf packing a bow as tall as she was. As near as I could tell, she hated humans only marginally more than everyone else. “Praedo wants to see you.”

This was not good news. Praedo held notes that far exceeded the value of anything I still owned, including the fistful of federation medals I’d been awarded before I put military life behind me and embarked on a career of heavy drinking, far from anyone or anything I cared about. That he had sent Jabiir after me meant that however paltry the amount might be to a man of his means, he was serious about getting it back. That he’d sent Nirix implied that if push came to shove, he might be fine with taking it out of my corpse…


 

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Will there be a “remember me” function for logging

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03/15/2012
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Question:Will there be pvp tournaments/arenas?
You bet your sweet true-action loving behind there will!

Nothing set in stone when we look at Korea; but everyone knows we here over at the western part of the world love PvP a hell of a lot more then Koreans do.

I personally expect there will be ingame and even RL tournaments as long as the game is successful enough!

 
Question:IP restriction
Description:will i be able to play this game from Australia? i don’t want to waste my money buying the game and not be able to play
 
Question:Can I upgrade to Collectors Edition?
Description:I would like to upgrade to digital collectors edition. Is this possible?
Assuming you bought the digital download from EME than you can put in a ticket and request an upgrade.

If you bought the game from gamestop, bestbuy, amazon etc. you will have to contact them to find out their policy.

 
Question:Helmets?
Description:
I don’t need to go on about how much I love the game, because that’s gonna be a given. My main issue (if any), is there are no helmets. Now I have seen people in the forums talking about a patch soon that will have helmets in it. I have yet to get a straight answer when I ask, will these be vanity helmets, or real helmets that have stats and are part of your gear with a gear slot on it’s own? Thank you in Advance!
The only helmets that are currently available in KTERA aren’t actually really helmets but more along the lines of “headgear”. A flower, a puppet and so on.

These headgear items do NOT offer any stats whatsoever; they are purely there to make your character his or her head look more app(e)aling.

 
Question:Will there be a “remember me” function for logging into the website and the game?
Description:
I notice I have to type my login and password much too often that I would like, and was hoping the there be a “remember me” check box implemented soon so that I can avoid typing my information every day that I check the forums (which I do).

 

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High end gear becoming BOP and how this affects

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03/15/2012
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Question:Pre order
Description:
I pre ordered the game from the main site . So when I bought the game, I didn’t notice that the client is the us version and not the european version. My question is if I’m able with my account to download the eu client and play on eu servers in the future or I’m forced to play on na servers, because I pre ordered the us version. In this case I find it very unfair. I know I should pay more attention but the eu site is not very evident searching on internet. I tried to log in the eu site of tera, but it says to me that is under maintenance. I never had a doubt like this in the past, all games I played I downloaded the eu client without any problems. So I’d like if someone can answer me : ) sorry for my english.
 
Question:Blue Plz: High end gear becoming BOP and how this affects enchanting & the economy.
Description:
According to this:


Patrick and Producer Chris Hager said that for the west, drops from tough mobs will drop higher-grade BoP loot instead of the BoE loot they’re dropping in K-TERA / J-TERA.

The reasoning IIRC was two-fold:
1. to better reward the players for downing a tough mob
2. so players don’t have to worry about or compete with farmers
    High end gear is becoming BOP.

I hope you have thought this through because this is going to have a HUGE repercussion at max level when we’re talking about the economy.

As you know; once people get their T12R1 gear they start luxing it and enchanting it to +12.

As you also know; getting from +9 to +12 requires gold gear. (There’s a very small success chance with white/green/blue that makes it not even worth trying, the odds of succeeding with items of this quality are around 0.3% while with gold and proper enchanting mats this rises to around 30%)

I’m sure you are starting to see the dilemma; making golden gear BOP means the high-end market will dry up and a huge inflation will take place for green/blue BOE’s to use for enchanting while making Gold gear nearly priceless (you can still do sell runs) completely off-setting the economy and possibly ruining an equal opportunity +12 enchanting route.

If you are going through with this then please adjust the enchanting system along with it; make using BOE greens/blues a viable option for getting +12.

Please tell me how you are going to go about this approach.

 

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continue for the question and answers

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03/15/2012
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Question:Where can I find the stats in the game and their role in the game?
Description:I played in CBT3 and didn’t really get a good look at the stats while I was playing. I got a little too excited about just playing haha. But I was wondering, where on the site can I find the list of stats for characters, and what they do for your character? Thanks in advance!
 
Question:Is there an explanation somewhere of what every character stat does?
Description:For example, what do presence, strength, balance, etc. do?
 
Question:[Link Compilation] Help with Launcher Errors!
Description:
Got one of the following problems:

Getting a checksum error during the “applying the patch” stage?
Download bar is changing from “downloading” to “Retrieving manifest”?
Launcher keeps downloading and patching and loops over and over even before I login?
Error: ffffffff Fatal game client exception?
Insufficient Privileges?
Launcher login error – TERA has stopped working?
TERA launcher will not start?
Slow downloads?
The login page constantly refreshes. Website or Launcher?
My launcher resolution is bigger than my desktop resolution and I can’t click the play button?
When I restart my launcher during download, it starts the download all over again?
“Not enough disk space” error when you have plenty of space?

 
Question:Haven’t had the chance to try out the beta yet, wondering how well my old build would handle TERA.
Description:
Wondering if my old build could handle TERA, not worried about my new one but I’m still waiting for Ivy Bridge so I’ll have to use this for a while.

 

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Question and answers

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03/15/2012
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Question:When does the preorder ship?
Description:
I preordered the Physical Collector’s Edition and got an email confirmation, but no ship or delivery date is mentioned. I assume it will arrive before May 1st? I want to take advantage of the earlybird subscription pricing, but I guess I have to have a copy of the game before I can set up a subscription, and I have no idea when to expect to receive the game.
 
Question:Do Sorcerers have animated (collapsing) discs?
I noticed in two YouTube videos from the Korean Tera that Sorcerers have animated (collapsing) discs.
 Is this in our version of Tera too? So far all I’ve seen are static (only rotating) discs.

They clip really badly in the human female arm (mostly because it’s positioned off-center) and I would love to have one like these instead.

 
Question:Why did my game crash twice sayin “Insufficient Memory”?
Question:Launcher+Website Login Issues?
Description:
Ok, so I can’t login from my GAMING computer to the enmasse website, or the Tera launcher.

I try and it just automatically goes back to the main page. Even on the launcher, when it says it is an unknown device, I put in the code from the email then it goes back to that main page just like the website.

I have javascript and all those other things installed + running. I just don’t get what is up.Anyone know what is wrong?Thanks!

Question:Why did my game crash twice sayin “Insufficient Memory”?
Description:
1st off here are my pc spec.. im sure some will ask what im running.
intel i5 25k @ 4.0Ghz
MSI 560 gtx ti hawk
8GB DDR3 1600mhz ( using 4GB due to 32 bit OS)
ASUS P8Z68-MPRO MBO
500GB HD
650watt PSU

i play tera great max settings ect..my game crashed twice only while i was in Velk? anyone have a solution why? or an idea as u can see my pc is more then enough to run the game.I understand also tera runs a 32bit client as well , so i have enough ram? Someone made a suggestion about a Paging File ect..and something about tweaking the virtual memory under the system and maintenance area? just trien to understand why it said “Insufficient Memory”

 

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TERA Community Event at Penny Arcade

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03/14/2012
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When you get a bunch of writers together, what do we talk about? Characters, of course. (Also coffee and the overuse of the semicolon.) At Penny Arcade Expo this year we gave TERA fans a chance to peek behind the curtain and get a little taste of what it’s like to be a writer at En Masse Entertainment.

The overall theme was “Emotional Rewards Through Storytelling”—an unofficial motto for the writing team. After a quick look at the many kinds of writing you’ll find in TERA, everyone in the room got to collaborate on the creation of a character for the game. In short, it was an audience-participation version of the exercises that the En Masse writers do in front of the white board every day.

Working together, TERA community members and the En Masse writers created a questline involving a soldier who’s stationed at the edge of a precipice—a precipice she finds far more terrifying than the enemies she fights on a daily basis. Aided by writer Fran Stewart’s improv-acting chops, we duplicated our creative process in front of an enthusiastic audience. (The open bar helped.

We’ve got all kinds of new things going on today at TERA-online! In addition to launching our new site with new lore and updated materials, we’re pleased to announce the launch of our long-awaited blog.

We’re not calling it a developer blog because we plan to use it for more than just developer posts. We’ve got a lot going on at En Masse—a massive Westernization effort by our writers, community events, updates from our producers here in Seattle and Korea—in short, all kinds of things we want to talk to you about. This blog will serve as our soapbox.

We have some content to help get the party started, but if you want to hear about anything in particular, hit us up in the comments. We always look forward to your thoughts on what we write—we plan to put a lot of time into this, so we hope you get a lot out of it! 

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In One of the Most Beautiful Places in the World!

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03/14/2012
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Our agenda was simple. Stefan and I were to head to Seoul and meet with the Bluehole Production team and discuss such trivial issues such as closed beta, PvP servers, end game content, the Western leveling curve, and production status. In other words, it was a very important trip. Our first meeting revolved around the scheduling and features necessary to run a successful closed beta in North America. This is a key difference between territories in the operation of betas and the eventual launch of a product. Some of our time was spent discussing the “why.” It’s important in Westernizing a game that you never assume someone else understands your reasons. Simple things we take for granted—like the lead time required to create a game box—are not always obvious (especially in a country where there is no boxed product). The rest of the meeting went pretty well in determining feature specs and making sure we can make our timeline for insert beta start dates here (sorry, still no announcements).

Believe it or not, this was the first time I ever had a Big Mac—always been a double-quarter-pounder-with-cheese guy. Then we caught up with the localization crew, and we all high-fived because things are going so smoothly. The major take-away from that meeting was “Let’s not rock the boat, cause we rollin’!” Next, BHS treated us to a day in the life of a level 60 in TERA. We talked endgame for a good 2 hours, and came away quite happy with what’s in store for a max level player. After this we rolled by a programmer’s cube and he quickly compiled the latest TERA client to show us a console controller in action. Controller support is even better than I’d hoped, and integration for utilizing the UI has been implemented. Pretty slick. I asked the programmer if he had ever integrated a controller into a game before—everyone laughed because in Korea, keyboard-and-mouse is king.

Our first day-two meeting kicked off with a development status update. We went over some of the big changes in the next version, talked about release timing, and fired off a bunch of questions about current and future content. It was all very informative. From there we went right into the discussion of Western leveling curve adjustments. We’ve agreed for some time now that a different curve is necessary for the West, but until this meeting we hadn’t put numbers to it. We discussed all the details of a change as substantial as this, and Mr. Park, the head of the development team, was understanding. We’ll continue to talk over the next few weeks and hopefully nail down the right pace for the Western market.

Our last meeting was a discussion about PvP and PvE servers for the west. Korea will just have one server set, so we needed to think through the changes necessary for our market. This was a great collaborative effort, as we each brought up points the other side wasn’t aware of. More work and research to do on this front!

We rounded off the night with some more Korean BBQ for dinner, then drinks and Karaoke for dessert. Yes I have pictures; no I won’t post them :) Instead I will leave you with our beloved Stefan Ramirez kicking it at the palace the next day before our flight. 

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Returning from a Visit to Bluehole Studio

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03/14/2012
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How’s it going TERA community? I just got back from a week-long trip to Korea, where key members of our Ops team (COO Pat Wyatt, Director of CS Adam Stayer, and me, Sam Kim—our resident Guy in the Corner) met with Bluehole developers for discussions regarding our publishing platform. It was an intense week of collaborations, meetings, brainstorming, question-and-answer sessions, and discussions, but it’s been great working with such an experienced and talented team intent on building a high quality publishing platform focused on great user experiences and streamlined support.

“What in the world is a publishing platform?” you ask? It is the aggregation of features and technology that allows us to publish and service the game efficiently and effectively. This includes features such as an account management system, subscription engine, payment method acceptance, customer support portal, knowledge database, security, moderation and CS support tools, analytics, bot detection, and so much more. The goal is to ensure a high quality experience for our players beyond the actual gameplay, everything from account creation to customer support to billing, and all the surrounding and supporting features required for a great overall user experience. But in order to ensure a great experience, it’s extremely important to build the platform specifically tailored to the appropriate audience—in En Masse’s case, North America.

This recent trip was just one of countless examples of the effort that both En Masse and Bluehole are investing into building a great game and platform for TERA players. It was an incredibly busy and productive trip, but we didn’t forget to do one of the things that make working in this industry so awesome: have fun! In fact, I’m happy to report that between Pat, Adam, and me, En Masse held their own against the drinking prowess of the team at Bluehole, a feat not easily accomplished and always regrettable (the following morning)! 

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