EverQuest patch switches up hot zones, nerfs some Ancient Heroes rewards


EverQuest has just been updated, and it's time to say goodbye to the ironically freezing set of hot zones that have provided icy experience bonuses for the past few months. This isn't a bad thing, as the new list of hot zones includes a number of popular areas for people to do their leveling in -- the full list can be found after the break, along with the rest of the patch notes. One of the hot zones, Howling Stones (also known as Charasis) has been altered to be more inviting for potential visitors:

Apparently while performing some end-of-the-summer cleaning, the doors within Howling Stones were left unlocked. It may be some time before a maintenance crew can be sent there again to lock the doors up tight. Use this knowledge as you will. In addition, the spells protecting the entrance to Howling Stones have weakened, and adventurers of lesser skill and strength may find its halls now accessible.

The other big change with this patch involves some tweaking of the Ancient Heroes missions from the previous update. The rewards from these missions have been the subject of much controversy ever since their introduction, and this patch has made many of them worthless (though they can still be refunded by handing them to the quest-giver). Having said that, some of the group-level rewards were actually improved. Hit the jump to see the patch notes in their entirety.
*** Highlights ***

- Many of Old Man McKenzie's items have faded from memory. If you have one of these faded items, give them to the Old Man in Plane of Knowledge and he will return your Brews. If you had augments in these items, be sure to put them in bags before you zone.

- Most items from Old Man McKenzie's group missions have been upgraded in power. They have also had their required levels reduced to 80. These items do not need to be turned in to see the changes.

- You will now have to impress Old Man McKenzie with your accomplishments before he will allow you to start a Nagafen or Vox raid or see items that come from them. People who have completed more than seven raids from Solteris, Meldrath's Mansion, Crystallos, or all but the first tier of Seeds of Destruction raids will impress him. You must request a Nagafen or Vox raid from him or attempt to join one in progress for him to check your accomplishments and allow you to see the raid items.

- New Hot Zones are now available. Speak to Franklin Teek in the Plane of Knowledge to see what new tasks he has in store for you.


*** Items ***

- Many of Old Man McKenzie's items have faded from memory. If you have one of these faded items, give them to the Old Man in Plane of Knowledge and he will return your Brews and an additional reward. If you had augments in these items, be sure to put them in bags before you zone.
- Most items from Old Man McKenzie's group missions have been upgraded in power. They have also had their required levels reduced to 80. These items do not need to be turned in to see the changes.
- You will now have to impress Old Man McKenzie with your accomplishments before he will allow you to start a Nagafen or Vox raid or see items that come from them. People who have completed more than seven raids from Solteris, Meldrath's Mansion, Crystallos, or all but the first tier of Seeds of Destruction raids will impress him. You must request a Nagafen or Vox raid from him or attempt to join one in progress for him to check your accomplishments and allow you to see the raid items.
- The new Orb of Tishan's click effect has been repaired.
- The Frost-Strung Bow now offers a bit more protection.
- Replaced the missing AC from the new Thick Banded Belt.
- Tobrin's Mystical Eyepatch can not be activated as often.
- The new Staff of Forbidden Rites has had its recast time raised and will only have one augment slot.
- The Barbarian Hunting Spear, Staff of Forbidden Rites, Warhammer of Divine Grace, and Staff of Ankexfen have had their ratios increased to match other weapons in their tier.
- The familiar summoned by the new Scimitar of the Mistwalker has become faster but weaker. The scimitar itself has become slightly less powerful.
- The Improved Dodge effect on the Idol of Many Hands, the Silvery Trinket, and the Frost-Strung Bow has been reduced to level VI to match the focus on other items in its tier.


*** Quests & Events ***

- Classic Missions have undergone a careful bug fixing pass resulting in the following changes:
- Harm Touch has been changed to remove an exploit allowing the use of unintended higher level versions of the ability. In addition, the ability will no longer refresh upon the death of the Shadow Knight. This affects the Classic Mission ability as well as the normal version of the ability.
- Paladins should now be able to create a Lay On Hands hotkey.
- Shaman have been granted the haste spell Alacrity.
- Lady Vox will now leash to her spawn point should she find herself outside of her room. This has been changed to provide an encounter more in the spirit of the event.
- Lowered the hand to hand damage on each of the classic mission characters to be more in line with their previous values. Monks of course still have much higher unarmed damage then other classes.
- The classic raids will once again drop items instead of brews.
- Old Man McKenzie no longer remembers encountering the Corrupted Gnome Explorer in Guk.
- Old Man McKenzie's group tasks now require a minimum of three adventurers to obtain and all three must be present to open the chests. The raid events will still require 12.
- Fixed an issue that caused the classic mission task to end when players were added or removed from the task.
- Fixed an issue that caused players to be able to use AAs in the monster mission that the shrouds were not intended to have.
- Fixed an issue that caused players that were dead and in hover mode to sometimes not receive rewards when the chest was opened at the end of the classic mission.
- Sulgar now promises the correct reward for Tarton's Wheel.
- Fixed some spelling errors in Blackfeather Roost tasks.
- The Dark Tower: Fallen Guard task now specifies the correct zone in its description.


*** NPC ***

- Modified the placement of some Rallosian Shocktroopers in Korascian Warrens.
- Increased the chance for Library Director Eslisar to spawn in the Keasora Library.
- Fixed a placement problem with an Elder Air Wyvern in Crystallos.
- The Pixxt Deathbinder's spell Consuming Flames now takes significantly longer to cast.


*** AA ***

- Glyph of Angry Thoughts should now always give you the full hate bonus as described.
- Harm Touch 1 – 10 will no longer refresh upon the death of the Shadow Knight. This is to make the ability consistent throughout the entire level range.


*** Zones ***

- The following zones are now Hot Zones providing new challenges and increased experience. Speak to Franklin Teek in the Plane of Knowledge to see what new tasks he has in store for you.

- Level 20 – South Karana
- Level 25 – Lake of Ill Omen
- Level 30 – The Twilight Sea
- Level 35 – Kedge Keep
- Level 40 – City of Mist
- Level 45 – Howling Stones
- Level 50 – Veksar
- Level 55 – Grieg's End
- Level 60 – Plane of Nightmares
- Level 65 – Kod'Taz, Broken Trial Grounds
- Level 70 – The Buried Sea
- Level 75 – Thalassius, the Coral Keep
- Level 75 – Ashengate, Reliquary of the Scale

- Apparently while performing some end-of-the-summer cleaning, the doors within Howling Stones were left unlocked. It may be some time before a maintenance crew can be sent there again to lock the doors up tight. Use this knowledge as you will.
- In addition, the spells protecting the entrance to Howling Stones have weakened, and adventurers of lesser skill and strength may find its halls now accessible.


*** UI ***

- Changed -

EQUI_Animations.xml - new dragitems
EQUI_CharacterListWnd.xml - minor alignment fixes
EQUI_CharacterSelect.xml - minor alignment fixes


*** Miscellaneous ***

- Fixed a bug that was causing chat messages sent to your guild to sometimes be lost.
- Fixed a problem with sound effects stacking that caused many sounds to play incorrectly.
- Fixed a problem that caused you to lose all the money on your shroud when removing the shroud and upgrading a mercenary.


*** Previously Updated ***

- Both the classic raid tasks and the zones they take place in have been set to their intended maximum of 42 players.
- Removed the ability for mercenaries to accompany you on Ancient Heroes missions. It seems that they don't much like being taken to a time when adventurers didn't carry coin around.
- The chests in the "classic" missions offered by Old Man McKenzie will now hang around a while longer once opened.



- The EverQuest Team

This article was originally published on Massively.