Greetings all Adventurers, great and small!
Over the past year, we’ve seen a lot of discussion among players about the need for server consolidation. The number of players in each server is critical to the dynamic world of ArcheAge, and that’s why the team has monitored it so closely. In short, after our analysis and your feedback we agree with you: It’s time for some of the servers to combine numbers to ensure the best play experience for all.
We know some of you have questions as to why we may have waited so long for this moment, and the answer is simple. Server consolidations, or Evolutions, in ArcheAge require players to give up their land. For some of you this isn’t much of a problem — you’ve packed light and you’re ready to cross blades with a new opponent. For others, the land you own has defined you and your play for years. Your land could be anything from a small farmhouse to a multi-region nation. Your land means a lot to you, and to be asked to give it up is not easy. This is why we’ve waited for as long as we could, and made sure to encourage players to make use of the server transfer system if they were looking for a higher population server with a new challenge.
But the time has come, and an Evolution is now the best way forward for the game as a whole. Some of you will be excited to hear this, others will be nervous, and we understand that. Today’s announcement comes with a comprehensive look at how this year’s Evolution will take place, and outline the options you have. The team is working hard to benefit all players of ArcheAge with this move, and we’re certain you’re going to notice many improvements over last year’s Evolution process. We’ll also make sure we leave our communication channels open with you so we can answer your questions and address your concerns in the coming months.
Please read through the following FAQ, and watch for further information on forums, in livestreams and social media as we move closer to Server Evolutions this September.
What is a Server Evolution? Is it a merge?
A Server Evolution is similar to a server merge that you’d see in other online games, except those affected by it will be moved to a new server rather than a currently existing server. We perform Server Evolutions in ArcheAge to give everyone involved the most equal chance at claiming land and castles in their new homes.
If we performed normal server merges, players from the lower population server would be placed into a pre-existing lower population server, where land is already claimed and castles are already built and one group may already have a significant advantage. That’s not exactly fair for those who have their homes and castles taken away.
In order to give everyone the same shot at claiming land and territory, we perform Server Evolutions instead.
Which servers will be affected?
After carefully looking at the active populations of all servers, we have determined which Legacy servers will be involved in the Evolution process and how they will be combined. After this process, the active character numbers on the new servers will roughly equal those of unaffected servers.
- Ollo, Tahyang, and Salphira will be evolved into CONVICTION.
- Morpheus, Nazar, and Hanure will be evolved into THUNDERWING.
- Kyprosa, Dahuta, and Rangora will be evolved into TEMPEST.
- Leviathan, Anthalon, and Sirothe will be evolved into RETRIBUTION.
Legacy servers not affected by the Evolution will accept incoming players through the server transfer service. These servers are Aranzeb, Kyrios, and Kraken in North America and Shatigon and Eanna in Europe.
Our Fresh Start servers – Reckoning, Vengeance, and Prophecy – will not be affected by the Evolution.
I’m on an affected server! What are my choices?
Option 1 – Elect to transfer your character to one of the high-population servers for free.
If you do not want to participate in the Evolution of your server, you will be able to perform a one-time, free transfer of your characters to one of the servers on your region that is not affected by the Evolution and is not a Fresh Start server (Reckoning, Vengeance, Prophecy.)
At the start of the Evolution transfer service, all accounts will be granted 10 temporary credits and the price of Transfers will be reduced to 1 credit. This will allow you to make use of the transfer service for free. These 10 credits will expire after the transfer period.
You can refer to this in depth article on the Transfer System. (Again, this will be a one-time, 1 credit transfer, not 2700 credits, and all accounts will be given 10 temporary credits before August 16 to make sure they can use the service for free.)
Important: Please be aware that we may shut off transfers to a specific server if it receives too many transfer requests. Transfers are on a first come, first serve basis. (Example: If too many players elect to transfer to Kraken, we may discontinue transfers to Kraken, but still allow transfers to Aranzeb, Kyrios, etc.)
Available Transfer Dates: August 16th – 29th, 2017, with transfers ending on August 30th, 2017. Exact start and end times to be announced officially as we get closer to the Server Evolutions.
The benefit of choosing the transfer option is being able to take your character to an established server that will not be affected by the evolution, for free. You get to choose where you go, and who you want to join. At any point in the 2 week window, you will be able to transfer at your own convenience.
The downside to choosing this option is the limitations of the transfer system: transferred characters cannot be part of a guild, castles and nations cannot be transferred, and all items to be transferred must fit within a character’s inventory and warehouse. Placed properties must be demolished or kitted before transfer. Characters that stay and are moved to the new Evolution server instead will have additional handling of some of these assets – read below!
Additionally, characters who transfer will not receive an Evolution compensation pack.
Option 2 – Stay on your server and be involved in the Server Evolution.
If you choose to stay on your server (or if you take no action to transfer), your characters will be involved in the upcoming Evolution. Once complete, your characters will live on the final Evolution server noted above.
The benefits of being a part of the Evolution include a more-complete reimbursement of items you’d normally lose during a transfer (including Guilds, Families, and Nations), as well as extra compensation. You also don’t have to pack up all of your items into limited inventory space in order to make the move.
The downside to choosing this option is that you will not be able to choose where you go, and re-placing properties will involve a server-wide “land rush” – a period of time where players move quickly to claim land.
During the Evolution [Option 2 above] you will receive the following:
- All of your fully-built homes/farms/structures will be reimbursed as full kits. Full kits are housing designs that can be immediately placed in the world without requiring any resources or labor to build. You will also receive Bound Tax Certificates equal to the security deposit of your home + five weeks worth of tax payments, regardless of your pre-pay status.
- Furniture items in your home will be returned to you via the standard demolition process, and that includes items in chests. Items that are normally not returned due to a demolition will be returned to you after the Evolution is completed. Livestock and plants will not be returned to you. Décor Limit Increases will be re-sent to you after the Evolution is completed. The full list and more information on how this works will be presented on August 16.
- Families will be disbanded, but the family owner will be reimbursed any used Family Growth Tickets and used Family Name Change Tickets after the Evolution. Families will need to be re-formed once you arrive on your Evolution server, but the prior Family owner will receive items to increase your family level to what it was prior to the evolution.
- Guilds will be disbanded, outside of the Guild Leader, who will keep the Guild Name. Upon arriving in the Evolution server, the Guild Leader will have to re-invite his Guild Members. Guild Leaders will also receive Guild Contribution items and Guild Ribbons to restore their Guild Level. These ribbons will be bound and guild level specific: A level 2 ribbon will move a guild from level 1 to 2. Guild leaders will be given an additional Oath Ribbon to make up for any XP they may have had in their leveling state.
- UCC Items and Crest Inks cannot be carried over. Instead, players will receive a compensation of a Bound Crest Brainstorm for each item that has a UCC and each Crest Ink you possess.
- Arena ranking information will be preserved as-is.
- Heroes will be removed and no Heroes will be on the council until the next election cycle. Any player who was an active hero at the time of the Evolution will be gifted a Golden Hero reward after the Evolution.
- Diamond Shores Faction Bases will start at Level 1 and their portals will be activated. Players will have to rebuild the bases in order to claim castles and land in Auroria.
- Nations will be disbanded outside of the Sovereign, who will keep the Nation name. Despite not owning a castle, Sovereigns will be able to invite new citizens to their nation as long as they are over level 50. If a Sovereign owns a Golden Wyvern mount, it will be preserved in their inventory as normal. If the Golden Wyvern is not fully completed before the Evolution, any progress made on it will be lost.
- Castle Lords will receive a compensation package for each of their fully-built castle structures. Details of those packages will be released on August 16.
- As the Evolution downtime will take 2+ days to be completed, all players will be gifted +7 extra patron days if they are patrons during the Evolution.
- Finally, every character involved in the Evolution will be given a special Evolution package which will include the unique title, a temporary Any-Post Owl for use on the new Evolution server, bound hereafter stones, and more. More information on this pack will be delivered on August 16.
- All items delivered to you via System Mail, such as your house demolitions, Evolution Compensation, Guild Compensation, Family Compensation, Lord Compensation, Hero Compensation and more will last for 1 year. Don’t worry about those items expiring unexpectedly or quickly out of your mailbox!
When will all of this take place?
Here are our current dates for everything related to the Evolution process:
August 16th: Official compensation plans will be announced in detail. 1 Credit Transfers will begin.
August 30th: 1 Credit Transfers end. At this time, specific 7 day buffs will be blocked so no one can use them by accident and lose them early, and character creation on evolving worlds will be closed.
September 4th: Auction Houses will be locked. No new auctions can be created on any server.
September 7-9th: ArcheAge will be unavailable as we perform Evolution related maintenance.
September 9th: Europe and North America will be brought back online at separate times. During these periods, we will launch a single server at a time in order to control server loads and give everyone a chance to log in. AFK kick will be enabled on Evolution worlds. During this time there may be queues on Evolution worlds due to the number of players attempting to log in at once.
Community Frequently Asked Questions
Q. How will you curtail land abuse when the Evolution servers open?
We will be monitoring servers closely. Anyone who abuses an exploit or uses a “land hack” will find their house swiftly demolished, and their account will receive disciplinary action to be determined by the Customer Service team. Don’t do it!
Additionally, our normal land rush rules will be in effect after the Evolution. You may only have two unbuilt plots per account at any one time, and the other rules will apply as well. Full Kits work around this rule as they are automatically completed once placed.
Q. Will land areas be placed into peace after the Evolution?
Yes! Peace will be enforced in all zones for 24 hours after the launch of the new Evolution servers. This way players will have the best shot at claiming land without undue conflict.
Q. When will we be able to transfer to the new Evolution servers after the Evolution is completed?
We have not yet set a date for when we will open transfers to the new Evolution Servers. Please watch for future announcements.
Q. After the Evolution, how long will my items last?
There is no limit for anything you are wearing, anything in your inventory, or anything in your warehouse. Items being returned to you via mail will last 1 year in your mailbox.
Q. What will happen to furniture items that are normally destroyed in demolish?
These items will be copied and returned to you after the evolution. Never fear, your Fish Trophies and more will be saved. We’ll have more information on this on August 16.
Q. If our guild owns a castle during the Evolution period, what happens to our castle? Will we be compensated?
We are planning to reimburse the Lords of castles for each of the buildings they have placed in their domain, but more information on this will be given on August 16.
Q. If players with the same names are moved onto the same new Evolution server, who gets to keep their name?
We will detail how Evolution name conflicts will work on August 16. In the case of transferring, if you transfer to a server where someone already has your name, you will be asked to choose a new name during the transfer process.
Q. If a house is unbuilt or in the process of being built, is it returned as a full kit?
It is not returned as a kit. Only fully completed houses are returned as a full kit. The standard design will be returned to you instead.
Q. Will there be a priority system in place for logins, such as Patrons being placed first in a queue?
Yes, a priority system will be in place for Patrons during the opening of the Evolution servers.
Q. Will AFK Kick be enabled on the new Evolution servers?
Yes, AFK Kick will be enabled on the new Evolution servers during their launch.
Q. Will North America and Europe come online at the same time?
North America and Europe servers will be brought online separately and at different times. This is to appropriately manage load on the servers. A more detailed plan will be released as we approach the live date.
Q. Will new character creation be closed prior to the Evolution period?
Yes, character creation will be disabled starting on August 30.
Q. As servers will be unavailable for 2 days, will our Patron subscriptions be paused?
All Patrons will receive +7 days of patron for free after we arrive on the other side of Evolutions!
Q. Will I keep all of my mail during a server Evolution?
Some recent mail will be kept, but most will not be. Please use the time prior to the Evolution to clean out your mailbox as we cannot guarantee which messages will make it to your new address.
Q. What happens to my friend list in an Evolution?
Your friends list will be kept intact, and those who may change their names will be listed on your list under their new names.
Q. What happens to my custom teleport list in an Evolution?
Your custom teleport list will be wiped in order to make sure no one has an advantage when claiming land on the Evolution server. The main teleport points in the game (dungeons, cities, etc.) will remain intact.
Q. I’m a Hero on my current server, what will happen to my cloak and hero status when I am moved during the Evolution?
New evolution servers will start off without heroes until the next election cycle begins. All of your previous benefits as a hero will be removed, including your cloak.
If you were a hero elected to office before the evolution, you will be given the Golden Hero reward after the Evolution, regardless of your leadership or rallying call use.
Q. Do custom crest images transfer with my character in an Evolution?
No, all custom crests are wiped as we have no way to transfer them – they are unique to a server. However, for every “crest stamp” that you have created and for each of your items that holds a custom crest, we’ll compensate with a crest brainstorm.
Q. Will you convert all pirates back to their original faction during the evolution downtime so that they can participate in the land rush as was initially the case on a fresh server?
No, pirates may spawn on Growlgate Isle but they are free to port to any static location that they may have obtained during their green life. Please note that all contested zones on Haranya and Nuia will be set to peace for 24 hours and that pirates cannot be attacked during peace.
Q. Which tradepacks will I be able to keep on my back during the Evolution, and which ones can’t I keep?
For now, the only packs we are intentionally removing are Purified Archeum Packs. All others can accompany you with the transfer evolution with unless we identify an additional category that should be removed.
Q. Which items are currently marked as “server specific” and how will they be handled?
Currently the only items that are server specific are Siege Scrolls. These will be removed automatically should you be in possession of one.
One of my questions wasn’t answered! Where can I ask it?
If you still have more questions, we want to be sure to answer them! We will answer all of the questions you may have regarding the Server Evolutions on a weekly basis. Simply stop by our brand new “Server Evolutions and You” thread in the official forums, and ask away!