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  1. #1
    Player Kylos's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    120
    Character
    Kylos
    World
    Cerberus
    Main Class
    DRK Lv 99

    Vagary Woes - Increasingly More Difficult To Run. Lack Of Incentive.

    This is a story of a Vagary Linkshell which is on the verge of collapse. Back in June 2015, I was tired of seeing no Vagary events, and others players having to pay extortionate amounts of gil to get their clears. My aim was to make a Vagary linkshell which would get players their clears for free, as long as they worked hard and followed direction. The first couple of months was rough, as I scoured the Cerberus server for potential members. It was fun learning the basics, and over the months we became a well-oiled machine which found new ways of beating it.

    Somehow the LS attracted some of the best players on the server, mostly GMT and EST players. As Cerberus doesn't have much of an EU population, we had to run later to accommodate for our American friends. In the end, we became so strong we would clear Vagary every Tuesday with 18 players on a server which struggled to reach 500 players outside Japanese primetime. A month ago we were killing the whole thing in less than two hours.

    But while we succeeded in getting players their clears, there's other parts of the content we have not. I can honestly say we've been running every single week since June and have never seen Tartarus Platemail drop from Plouton. How can we do Vagary for 10 months and not see one drop from Plouton? I know it's meant to be rare, but seriously? And yes, I am aware there have been many posts pointing to the drop rate on this elusive piece.


    While we've never seen it drop from Plouton, we've been successful during Vagary Campaigns. On the first campaign, we saw three Platemails go to regular members through the random drop. We assumed this good fortune would continue, but since then we've only seen two (some campaigns didn't give any), one of those going to an outside player, and the other going to a pearlsack member who didn't really want it.

    And while we see many different campaigns, Vagary Campaigns are rare. This is bad news for the linkshell, as it seems the best players only show when campaigns are on. And should we blame them? When you can do all five NMs, pick the random option, and get something terrible like a Rabid Visor? Or an Etched Memory? It's very discouraging when you put in so much work and get nothing worthwhile in return.

    Many of our members continued to run with me because I made the content fun and easy to understand. I tried my best to encourage members to practice, and get better with every run. Many players have come and gone, they spent their time in the LS, got everything they needed, helped us for a while, and moved on. And again I don't blame them, because they were waiting months to see a Platemail drop from Plouton, to actually see progress, but the discouraging drop rate and random choice option does nothing but turn them away.

    The server has been crippled after many endgame LS left for Asura and Odin, and now we're lucky to see over 300 members at gather time. The last two weeks there's been less than 300 players on the server, and it's clear many of those are doing Ambuscade, an event that can be soloed any time, and is casual and doesn't require much planning or strategy.


    Vagary is different. It should be exceptionally rewarding. It is a lot of fun, but it can only be fun for so long til players grow tired of it. I believe I'm the only player who publicly announces a weekly event on Cerberus, and today, after Rancibus screwed us over once again by timing us out at 1% (not exaggerating) when several members needed the clear, I considered breaking the linkshell. My linkshell members reassured me that I do a fantastic job, that the server needs me and my linkshell. Without VagarySpeaking, the server would be completely dead at our time, and no one would get Vagary clears.

    I'm not going to beg you. I'm not going to cry. All I can do is offer suggestions, and it would be really cool if someone responded, if anyone from SquareEnix would respond and let me know if there's any plans to tweak Vagary for those who like doing it. Please don't let Vagary die, because it's essential to players who want Empyrean Reforged, and how will they ever reforge their equipment if they can't find anyone who will run it?

    So here's my attempt at some suggestions.


    - Make Vagary Campaign permanent. At least this way, players have a choice of a gil item/equipment and a random drop, whereas others can try their luck and go for two random choices. This would increase the likelihood of platemails, but not too much that everyone will have one.

    - Make a Records Of Eminence objective for Plouton. 50-100 Ploutons gives a key item which can be traded for a Platemail. By doing this it sets a target, and if a linkshell is unlucky for ten months, at least the members who stuck through it are rewarded in the end. Could give other rewards for those who don't want the platemail.

    - Increase the drop rate on Plouton. After doing Vagary over ten months, the drop rate is so abysmal I don't believe it exists. It's become a running joke in my linkshell, whenever anyone mentions the platemail, I'll say "Body? What body? Never heard of it". Would it hurt to increase the drop rate even slightly? Not expecting it to drop 100%.

    - After so many Ward Key items (all five) turned in, the skulls give an option of an extended reward. How many times? 25 times perhaps? Clear the entirety of Vagary 25 times and get the choice of a Platemail, stacks of gil items, or something new? Either way, it would encourage players to clear Vagary over and over, and the progress would be real and measured.


    But this isn't just about getting Platemails, the event has other problems, such as Rancibus, and the spawn conditions on Perfidien/Plouton. While I admire the fact you need some luck in the Rancibus run, it's heartbreaking when members play their hardest and lose out because "we were unlucky that time". Perhaps reduce the amount of pillars after each NM? How it is, if you're unlucky (which happens to us a lot), it's very easy to time out. And this includes an 18 person alliance, we have timed out with 18 players on Rancibus.

    As for Perfidien and Plouton, the MB requirements are a little too much for some. While veteran players mastered it, including one member of my linkshell who rarely joins us on Scholar to solo two of the phases, it's becoming increasingly difficult to do them. You either need a SCH, or a SAM, and finding players willing to play these jobs, and know how to do it? Very difficult indeed. Again, the challenge is finding the right players for the spawn conditions, while the NMs themselves ain't too difficult.

    I can understand why the event had these difficult conditions in the beginning, as it forced the best players to experiment to figure it out. It took my linkshell several weeks to not only find out what needed to be done ... but to put that in to practice and spawn the NMs. I imagine anyone else trying to lead this would be scratching their heads and giving up after a while. Does it need to be this difficult at this stage? Why can't Vagary be more "casual" player friendly?


    Apologies for the long post. I'm a disgruntled leader who does everything in his power to ensure players get their clears and enjoy doing themselves. I like to teach, I like to coach, and it's fulfilling to see them progress and be better players leaving the linkshell then they were when started out. It should be an event which is far more rewarding, and should encourage a full alliance, as far, far too much content is scaled to six players these days, and Vagary is the last event which doesn't punish you for bringing more.

    Thanks for reading. Please up vote my post if you agree, because it seems to go a long way in getting suggestions noticed. Thanks to everyone who appreciates the hard work I put in, and congratulations to everyone who ever got a clear with our linkshell VagarySpeaking.
    (15)
    Last edited by Kylos; 04-21-2016 at 05:21 AM.

  2. #2
    Player Stompa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Remora
    Posts
    633
    Character
    Nebula
    World
    Leviathan
    Main Class
    WHM Lv 99
    I did Vagary legs with 14-person alliance. The leader who shouted for the group, for three hours, was a Japanese veteran player, on his super PLD. A lot of the other people were also Japanese master players.

    We did two runs, and failed both times. First time we failed, a RDM cast Cure III on the PLD, and the two mobs he was fighting went and one-shotted the RDM. This despite the PLD having hate, and lots of enmity gear.

    Second time, similar, but with Erase spell, and a single mob hating on one of the other WHMs.

    So both times we failed / kicked-out because of the freaky "somebody was KO" rule, and because the enmity system is very strange imho. Duration of double fail run, including /shouts, was five hours total. So no empy legs for me, and I don't want to try again because it was a horrible experience.
    (2)

  3. #3
    Player Kylos's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    120
    Character
    Kylos
    World
    Cerberus
    Main Class
    DRK Lv 99
    I'm not surprised Stompa, Vagary is still difficult to master for many, and I had to run the event for several months before I could understand it. Hate is wonky, and the KO rule on Perfidien and Plouton is harsh. We lost a few pops in the autumn time because of that rule.

    Last night was the first time a few of the players in our alliance had done the content. We tried our absolute hardest from the first second of the Rancibus run to get through it. because we had 16 players and we could still lose because of "bad luck on pillars". Which we did, we had the worst luck after Brimboil, we had 22 minutes left, but we had to do every single pillar and Rancibus spawned at the end with 1 minute 30 seconds to go. I couldn't find us a Scholar for the run, otherwise it would have died in that time. Our PLDs had to improvise and set up a skillchain, and our six blms + smn + cor (myself) threw everything at it. But in the end we were timed out at 1%. I wouldn't be surprised if those first-time players never want to do Vagary again after that experience.

    On the other side, two times (in 10 months) we've managed to pop Rancibus after three pillars and cleared the zone with over 30 minutes left. The difference between bad luck and extreme good luck is over 30 minutes in that zone. As for Perf/Plouton, we've had Plouton warp out because a SMN healed it too much with Astral Conduit. It's not just about keeping everyone alive, you can't heal them too much either. And if you screw up at any stage you have to start over. Many find it difficult to find this information, and if you're running with Japanese players, it's even harder because of the language barrier.
    (4)
    Last edited by Kylos; 04-13-2016 at 11:23 PM.

  4. #4
    Player Olor's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    2,134
    This event really shouldn't be locking players out of their AF3.

    And Kylos, I just want to say thank you. You're the kind of LS leader that makes this game worth playing - folks like you do so much for the community - and I hope that the devs listen and do something to make this event more worth running for you.
    (5)
    http://photobucket.com/gallery/http://s19.photobucket.com/user/soulchld4/media/Olorinus-Signature.jpg.html

  5. #5
    Player Kylos's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    120
    Character
    Kylos
    World
    Cerberus
    Main Class
    DRK Lv 99
    I hope so Olor. It's nice to get people their clears, even if it's only once a week. I've always been that way, I've spent the majority of my 11+ year FFXI life as a leader, whether it was a social LS, Dynamis LS, or in recent times my Vagary LS .. it's nice to help others even if I don't know them.
    (1)

  6. #6
    Player Raydeus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    MogVault 101
    Posts
    600
    Vagary and Incursion are in dire need of adjustments, so I hope the current dev team is already considering changes to them.
    (2)
    'Don't ever, ever try to lie to the internet. Because they will catch you. They will de-construct your spin. They will remember everything you ever say for eternity.'
    - Lord Gaben

  7. #7
    Player zataz's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    the land of nod
    Posts
    162
    Character
    Cardgrey
    World
    Ragnarok
    Main Class
    RDM Lv 99
    Quote Originally Posted by Stompa View Post
    I did Vagary legs with 14-person alliance. The leader who shouted for the group, for three hours, was a Japanese veteran player, on his super PLD. A lot of the other people were also Japanese master players.

    We did two runs, and failed both times. First time we failed, a RDM cast Cure III on the PLD, and the two mobs he was fighting went and one-shotted the RDM. This despite the PLD having hate, and lots of enmity gear.

    Second time, similar, but with Erase spell, and a single mob hating on one of the other WHMs.

    So both times we failed / kicked-out because of the freaky "somebody was KO" rule, and because the enmity system is very strange imho. Duration of double fail run, including /shouts, was five hours total. So no empy legs for me, and I don't want to try again because it was a horrible experience.
    the first action on a mob doesn't give hate it just aggros it u have to hit it with a ability 2Xto get hate =P
    btw what is a super pld =P
    also if we ever end up on the same server hit me up my link clears them with 6 man and getting u the win would not be a issue =P
    if u wanna take a trip for a few here and get your win that is fine too just give me some heads up so i can get my bros on the same page =P
    (0)
    Last edited by zataz; 04-16-2016 at 03:25 AM.

  8. #8
    Player Stompa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Remora
    Posts
    633
    Character
    Nebula
    World
    Leviathan
    Main Class
    WHM Lv 99
    Quote Originally Posted by zataz View Post
    the first action on a mob doesn't give hate it just aggros it u have to hit it with a ability 2Xto get hate =P
    btw what is a super pld =P
    also if we ever end up on the same server hit me up my link clears them with 6 man and getting u the win would not be a issue =P
    if u wanna take a trip for a few here and get your win that is fine too just give me some heads up so i can get my bros on the same page =P
    A super Pld, in the case of this Japanese gentleman, would be a Jobmaster with completed all RME swords and shields. His main has been PLD since forever and he is very good at it.

    Enmity is considered broken by many players, there are lots of threads about this subject. In certain events enmity seems to behave randomly at times, even assuming the new normal is not broken, there are clearly errors occurring.

    My point was not really about enmity, but about the "one death = game over" rule which is ridiculous. Enmity just makes this rule even more risky.

    Thankyou for your kind offer of assisting me. I have however tossed my lvl 109 empyrean sets now. My enthusiasm for further hoop-jumping and mousewheel-running is at null point zero. To be quite honest, I don't like the built-in obsolescence of ilvl gear.

    I will most likely be playing my locked-at-75 second-character in the future, so that mobs/NMs/events in old areas Vana'diel are still a fun and interesting challenge, and I can use my lvl 75 gear knowing it won't be made obsolete every few weeks.
    (1)

  9. #9
    Player Selindrile's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    628
    Character
    Selindrile
    World
    Asura
    Main Class
    BLU Lv 99
    I loved Vagary, it's the perfect kind of system in FFXI imo, requires teamwork, feels hard, but with synergy and progression it becomes very easy, as most of the Empy reforged items are becoming less useful (outside of some swap peices) it becomes less rewarding, but still great content, I wish more had even been done in that vein, that said:

    I couldn't agree more with Kylos about Tartarus mail, it's droprate is abysmal, I was on break when the campaigns have been running, I've yet to see one drop though 2 are in our shell due to those campaigns, obtained while I was gone. The droprate on that thing is not realistic to how FFXI is run in this day and age... it feels like a hold-over from a bygone era when the point of XI was to bash your head against a wall until either it or your head gave, that's not the XI of today, and it's something I don't want to return to.

    On an unrelated (except for the feeling it gives me) note, what the heck is with Reisenjimma augments, I thought they learned their lesson, completely random augments are horrible, the latest skirmish gear was the first "random" augment system I didn't hate due items having 3 seperate slots and different stones, (and I love ambuscade back augments) why do we keep returning to these completely random systems that everyone hates? Choosing a path, or an augment, or at the very least rolling one slot at a time is a thousand times better.
    (1)

  10. #10
    Player Kylos's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    120
    Character
    Kylos
    World
    Cerberus
    Main Class
    DRK Lv 99
    Liking all the feedback. Wanted to add that we did another Vagary run on Thursday (due to the failure of Tuesday), and after doing /yells for two hours, I managed to get 14 of us .. with a Scholar this time. And yes, we had luck on Rancibus and finished the zone with over 15 minutes to spare. We even carried on and did Perfidien/Plouton/Putraxia, and no deaths in the end. We came very close to Plouton warping out because it was acting strangely. It was changing weakness as frequently as a toddler changes their mind (it changed weakness in a few seconds several times) .. so one skillchain + MB healed it for 8-9% of its life while I spammed "Stop!" in the party chat. We were lucky that time.

    We have a LS rule where the most attended player has the right to lot Platemail if it drops (which is me). But we've killed so many Ploutons it's got to the point where I take us in so I can lock a Dark Matter, which is OK .. at least I make some gil out of it. What I don't understand is .. why did SE give us a Dark Matter campaign for Reisenjima gear instead of adjusting Vagary and encouraging players to farm the content more? It's like .. someone forgot that Vagary drops Dark Matters so they handed them out for free. I find it increasingly more difficult to sell Dark Matters because of those campaigns.
    (0)
    Last edited by Kylos; 04-16-2016 at 09:53 PM.

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