A forewarning: this will be a wall of text without any pictures.
As previously promised, I said I would have some news about Eir to give at the end of the month, and here I am, right on schedule! Whilst I'm afraid not enough work has happened on Eir yet to show off some really cool screenshots or videos, enough concept work has taken place to allow me to talk about what we envision of the re-vitalised Eir. However, that's not to say work has happened on Eir; I've been doing a lot of back-end stuff to get Eir up and running (without errors or warnings) and that's progressed now to such a stage that I can load up Zeus as Eir and actually play the game. So there's that!
First, let me talk about the basics. Rates will be 5/5/3, max levels will be 99/70, and max stats will be 99. It will remain pre-Renewal. So far, so similar. We actually plan to spruce this up a bit: we are thinking of upping card drop rates to 5%, instead of 3%, so people don't have to spend as much time hunting cards, allowing more time for actual playing of the game. Overall, we want Eir to still be a low-rate and fill that niche. Looking around, it seems that playing a low-rate server is an itch a lot of people want scratched, and of course we do want to stay faithful to the old Eir.
In the way of NPCs, we are planning for the following: no Job Master, but a simplified transcendence quest; no Reset Girl, but the Hypnotist would be expended to let anyone use her until trans level 50 (or 80 for non-trans classes); no Warpra, but @go would be allowed in towns only; Healers in towns and common places. We're looking for a sort of vanilla feel, but one that doesn't hinder you. It's no fun sitting around town waiting for your HP/SP to restore, for example, hence why we think having a Healer would be a good idea.
As for @commands, we think basic is the best way to go, so for example: @autoloot, @ii, @id, @mi, etc. Things that help you, but not without negatively affecting the overall gameplay of the server.
Now, I mentioned we wanted a sort of vanilla feel, which is true, but that won't stop us from adding new, and custom, content to Eir. At this point in time, we are looking to release Eir with a brand new introduction quest line (so you would no longer spawn in the Novice Grounds); this is about 45% finished at this point in time. This would lead on into the "main story line", which I won't spoil at this point in time (but I have the general plot worked out in my head, as well as rewards). The idea behind this is to structure the quests in such a way that players, both new and old, never feel lost and always have something to do - or at least know where to go.
At this point in time, we don't know what we are going to do with legacy characters. However, if you do own legacy characters on Eir (from before it shut down), please do not expect to receive them back wholly intact. Because we're actually going for a re-work of Eir, and not just a re-opening, we may have to stagger the return of, or remove completely, old items from people's characters. We will do our best to ensure you receive everything you had before, though.
I hope this starts getting people intrigued about what the new Eir will bring. There's much more planned that just what's in this post, but I don't want to blow everything on one post, especially not when none of it has even been worked on yet! Needless to say, we're excited about what we can do with Eir, and we hope you'll enjoy what we eventually release.
I'll be posting these topics as and when there are updates, so please keep an eye out!