Haemish reviews the new DAoC patch on F13:
My first few nights in DAoC on my own account, as opposed to an account which had a level 50 on it, were not so fun. I discovered the one flaw of all PVP games; if there are no opponents, there is no PVP. I quickly leveled to 4 and found that the level 1-4 battlegrounds were barren of players. Fair enough, leveling up to 5 should take no time. Only when I did, there was no one in the level 5 battlegrounds either. Gritting my teeth, I jumped back on the PVE level treadmill and worked my way up to 10. And since this was before the free level system was enacted, I experienced every one of those levels. The level 10-14 battleground was similarly empty. With a heavy sigh, my mind began to put two and two together.
With the ability to make /level 20 characters for anyone who’d already done the treadmill, very few people bothered to level up a character the old-fashioned way. This hypothesis was proven not only by the wasteland that was the level 1-19 battlegrounds, but by the continuous echo heard in all the old world zones, as well as in the Shrouded Isles zones of the same levels. You could have nuked all the zone servers for all the Classic and Shrouded Isles zones and not disturbed enough people to form a football team. I managed to get a group all of twice the entire time from level 1-20, and that was with a /level 20 character who was trying out an alt on another server than his primary. I’m not going to go so far as to say there are no new players coming into the game, but there weren’t many on my server.
Why I post this? Because even Mythic realized the same issues:
Finally, in any MMO, eventually there comes a time when most of the players online are experienced players and are playing characters that are mid or advanced level. This makes it much harder and tedious for a new player (or an experienced player leveling a new character) to advance their character in levels, as they cannot find other players to group with or to help them.
Now that Camelot is nearly three years old, it is becoming harder and harder for low-level players to find groups, which results in long leveling times and frustration.
This is exactly what Haemish noted. The point is that he joined the game AFTER Mythic deployed their “fixes”.
Congratulations Mythic, you won a “Cesspit Award”!
At around level 23, I maxed out the number of realm points I could get from that particular battleground, and so foolishly decided to level out of Thidranki and into the next battleground, Braemar, made for level 25-29.
And suddenly, the PVP stopped. Braemar was bereft of players, both opponents and friends, and suddenly I was adrift again.
Now, it wasn’t as if I walked into Braemar once at 3 AM, found no one and left. No, I came back three or four times over the next few days, in prime time and on weekends, and never found more than two opponents. I resolved that I would level up again, just once more, to level 30 in order to test out Wilton, for levels 30-34.
It isn’t that I didn’t want to group; but even in the 20’s, finding anyone to group with was next to impossible.
When I finally reached Wilton, battered and bored, I found it only slightly more active than Braemar. In six different occasions, spread over primetime, late night and afternoon hours, I had a total of two fights, and only one which involved more than four people in total. That was more than enough evidence for me. I knew I’d never have the patience to make it to 50, nor would I have the interest in achieving the Master Levels of the Trials of Atlantis expansion, feats which are rumored to contain more catass in them than the entire cast of Cats.
After two months, I cancelled my subscription.