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FAQ - READ BEFORE ASKING QUESTIONS (Refreshed March 22, 2003!)

  • Thread starter imported_Freyja
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First just a note about posting on this Forum
When posting or replying to a post please post with as short of a subject as possible while still being descriptive as to the nature of your post.

Additionally, when replying to a post that is listed as [NT], No Text, please removed the NT from the subject line of your reply. This will let other readers know that you did indeed supply text to be read in your message. .

I'd like to remind everyone that this is a forum for housing related discussions.

We discuss topics such as decoration ideas and house placement and try to help and explain as good as possible.

If you like to buy or sell a house, the best place for this will be the shard forums, not this one as there are the players for your particular shard who may want to sell/buy a home.

Thank you /php-bin/shared/images/icons/smile.gif

NEW Answers to the Top Questions of the Month NEW

What is Publish 16 and how does it affect my house? Click Here to Learn More

Is there a website on Home decorating? YES! Click Here

FAQ - Table of Contents

<font color=red>Hot Topic</font color=red>
Question-&gt; Why is my house improperly placed now:

1. Why should I use the search function and how do I use it?

2. What are the different decay stages of a house?

3. How do I transfer a house?

4. What items block placement and what doesn't block placement?

5. Is it safe to demolish a house and replace it with another and what precautions should be taken?

6. What about add-ons?

7. Where can I find useful links for housing?

8. How do I stack chests easily?

9. If I place an item it autodestructs and poof is gone!?

10. Placing your home / How much can I sell my home for?[Updated October 14, 2002]

11. Just how do I figure out if I can place a Large Tower where my current home(s) are at?

12. How is it that some people own multiple houses on the same shard? Can I?

13. Vendors: How often do they pay themselves a day? How do I get rid of one I own? How do I get rid of one I do not own but is in my house?

14. How can I upgrade my current house to a larger house?

15. AoS FAQ

16. Is there a list of footprints for houses? (Yes!)

<font color=blue>15. How do I look for a place to put my new house deed?</font color=blue> New, 9-7-02 From Cpl Punishment.


<font color=red>Why is my house improperly placed now:</font color=red>

No matter where your house is located, Malas, Trammel, Felucca, it can go into a state of improperly placed if certain events occur in your homes surrounding area. A house that is properly placed one day can go improper the next due to the following:
1. A house near yours changed from a classic house to a customized home. Due to the stairs of the plot invading your front and back space.
2. A new house placed behind yours, the stairs somehow manage to invaid the 5 tiles that is to be cleared between the new house and yours.

3.You change something on your house, mainly adding a stair in either of the corners

May be others but this is the majority

What does this mean?
It means that if you were to demolish the house, there is less likely a chance to replace it with an identical size home. That’s it. you loose no functionality.

this is not reffering to Old OLD houses built in guard zones and other places, just ones that have turned into improper since UO.R

1. Why should I use the search function and how do I use it?

The search function is of help, if someone is trying to find any kind of information concerning a specific topic. You will find the search function on top of the forum (next to Main Index) and you can either search 1 forum at a time or all forums at once (but then you might get to much non relevant hits).

2. What are the different decay stages of a house?

The decay stages of houses are as following:

like new approx. 50 minutes
slightly worn 2 to 3 days
somewhat worn 2 to 3 days
fairly worn 2 to 3 days
greatly worn 2 to 3 days
in danger of collapsing 18-24 hours

the same applies for ships

(you can read it also on On Housing decay stages)

Comment on IDOC:
It is usually lasting 16 hours plus server maintance time. This means that as soon as a house reaches that state,
it may take from 20 to 24 hours until it finally collapses. Sometimes houses can fall earlier than 16 hours.

3. How do I transfer a house?

If you transfer a house, you have to stand next to the house. Then a trade window will be opened as soon as the owner of the house chooses the transfer option of the house-menu.
There will be a type of scroll in the trade window with the coordinates of the house. Make sure the coordinates are the same as those of the house you wish to purchase. If they are, then put a check of the appropriate amount in the window.

4. What items block placement and what doesn't block placement?

Water barrels can block placement at the moment. To avoid this, carry an empty pitcher and take out the water from the barrel until it's empty. The empty barrel can then be picked up and the house placed.
A list of non-blocking flowers can be found here.
New tailoring BOD rewards such has streched hides have also been known to block placment, best bet is to place around them.

5. <font color=red>Is it safe to demolish a house and replace it with another and what precautions should be taken?

Demolishing and replacing a house is never safe as the ground on both facets is slightly changing from time to time. What you could place yesterday, you may not be able to place now.
Since Publish 16 Phase 2 has started, the safest way is to do allot of research. Try placing the house on the test server when they are up and running, try and looking on another shard.

If you have recently received a house, on any shard either by trade or placement, you have to wait 7 days from that event. To find out if you are in a "wait state" double click on a house deed. See if you get a message that says "you have to wait X days before placing a house". If you get that message or something like it, by all means
DO NOT RE-DEED your house!.

We used to suggest 1 final test, and that was to wait until the server stops saving, then try the upgrade. However since there is a 2nd server recording all housing activity, it is unknown if the shards server would send the information to the housing server while the server is not saving. While this is a good test still for homeless accounts, I would not advise someone who has a house on a shard to do this until more information is available.

</font color=red>

6. What about add-ons?

If I transfer a house will the add-ons stay in the house?
Yep all that is inside the house will stay there, only if you redeed a house all add-ons will be lost.

How do I redeed an add-on?
You can't, you have to use an axe to smash them to bits and buy a new one. (Keeps the carpenters in bussiness)

Do I need to lockdown add-ons?
Nope they are automatically locked, extra locking them will only waste lockdowns.

7. Where can I find usefull links for housing?

If you can't find an answer in the following essays then it will be material for the FAQ /php-bin/shared/images/icons/smile.gif


8. How do I stack chests easily?

I found it best to target the lower left corner of the chest that is on the floor (make sure you don't highlight the chest, it will then drop inside the chest) It takes a little practice, but practice makes perfect.

9. If I place an item on the floor it autodestructs and poof is gone!?

Make sure you have no banned monsters outside the house, as then the moment you put something down the client will think you are blocking the monster and the monster will destroy the item. Happens a lot in towers for some reason.

10. Placing your home / How much can I sell my home for?
Written by RealJones Edited by Flippy

Section 1: Placing your home

This guide was originally written for those who were having problems placing homes when housing in Trammel first opened up (in the end of July 2000).

For small houses: This is where the real fun begins, and where the focus of this guide is meant to be. Do not worry, there are always spots left. Its just a matter of finding them. First, Don't bother with large open areas, they will be full. This is almost a given, everyone always checks places where they know houses will fit. Second, Don’t bother with any open area, cause if a house can fit there, odds are there is one there. This is the second place people go. Finally, the most important thing, compare "house" maps of the facets. This leads into the next point, look in the WOODS, not those little open areas in the woods, but the woods themselves. Were talking surrounded by trees, dark green on the radar map. This is where almost all of the leftover spots will be found. The key is to locate houses in the woods on one facet, then look and see if there is one there on the other facet. The vast majority of people never check the "pure" woods, they just look in the open areas and then pancake on message boards when they can't find a spot. This is much easier if you have UOAM, and even more helpful with 2 accounts, because then you don’t need to use moonstones all the time. Also, check the edges of open areas, where the flat, light green ground meets the dark green wooden ground. For some reason, people feel as if all housing stops when the woods start. Not true. Many spots can be found on the edges of open areas, so the house is in half woods, half open area. I even saw a "classic-style" 2-story placed like this. be original. I even placed a small on Pac where my guild house is on GL, mainly because the guild house is in the woods in a not so obvious place. Remember, you can place over most small impediments, including little trees and flowers. A good motto is "If its dead in fel, I can place over it in trammel." (note: trees without leaves are not dead. They are just trees without leaves. Remember this.)

Placing a larger home: Unfortunately, there is no room left for large homes on all of the main U.S. shards. There is still room on SP and AOL legends, and the Japanese shards. If you want to place a large home on a main shard, then you are going to have to watch homes and wait for a large to fall, so that you can put one in its place. Good luck there.

So to recap: compare facets/shards, and look in the woods.
You may not get that Brit cemetery house, but a house in the woods is better than no house.

Section 2: How much can I sell my home for?

There are three determining factors that will determine how much your home will sell for: type, facet, and most importantly (10x more important than the others), location. The shard that a home is on does not play a great role in determining its value, prices are pretty much the same across the board. Any difference from shard to shard in price is covered in the large base price "zone."

Setting a base price today, since Publish 16 Phase 2 (Oct 14 , 2002) is rather difficult. First since you own a house you are probably thinking about getting a newer one, big, better spot or just reducing the amount of homes you own. Since this question is how much should I sell my house for, you need to just think of a few simple things. Let first go over if your’ acquiring a new one soon.
Ask yourself:
1. Can I afford the house I am going to get?

See if you do not have the gold, then the sum to sell for is simple.

(Price of new house) – (gold in bank + items of value that can be sold) = Amount

Lets say that the cost is 5 Million for a Villa in Trammel, will if you only have 4 of the 5 sell your house for a 1 mill, this can happen on most all shards regardless of size.

2. If you have the gold to get the new house, then sit at the bank and see what people are offering for there homes that are similar to yours and go from there.

3. If you have the gold, and the opportunity to get a bigger better house, you need to act quickly due the fact, if you get the new house and do not sell the other(s) you will only have 5 days to sell, they will fall if you don’t. Also the seller of the house you want may not wish to wait around for you to sell off your other homes. If this is the case, sell it to the first bidder at a fair price to you:

Deed + below market value sum = your selling price.

If your selling just to reduce the number of houses you own, then simply sit at the bank in Brit and see what others are selling for, do this for awhile then decide on a price.

The following will help you determine the price to sell, food for thought if you will.

Things to take note of about the different house types:
- Villas and Marble Patios are generally more desirable than there "old style" counterparts
- Keeps and Castles rarely sell for gold or items, almost all of them end up on EBay.
- For sales of larger homes (from the Villa up), gold is usually not the only thing traded. Trades can include rares, other properties and other items; the prices reflected are the total worth of all items presented.
-As an example, a castle on GL Felucca sold, in 1999 (before duping/inflation craze, and trammel), for 15 mil gold, a complete set of monster statues, complete set of phoenix armor, 2 furniture dye tubs, numerous hair dyes, a tower, a 2 story, several smalls, and some other, smaller items. In today's figures, the total items traded for the castle totaled well over 70 million.

The second determining factor is the facet that the house is located on. After viewing thousands of homes go for sale and be sold in UO, the following things are almost always true:
- trammel small homes sell for more than felucca small homes.
- Trammel large homes sell for less Felucca large homes.
- It makes no difference what facet a tower is on.
- Keeps and Castles on Felucca sell for a much larger amount than their Trammel counterparts, usually because castles/keeps on trammel ice island and other areas are surrounded by 10 other castles/keeps.

The third, most important factor is location. This can drive a homes value through the roof (higher than high end of base price), or kill it (lower end of base price). Here are examples of locations that can greatly increase a home's value:
- being located near a city
- being in the guard limits of a city puts a homes value into the astronomical range.
- being near mountains for mining
- being near the Brit X-Roads
- being near the ocean
- being near or in a well-established player run shop or town
- if a larger home could placed in the same spot if the house were demolished (thanks to UORealtor for this one). For example, I own a large patio that is in a spot where I could demolish my large patio and replace it with a marble patio. This is not worthwhile to me at this time (as my home is full of stuff), but as a selling point could earn me more gold.
- being near "points of interest," ie dungeons, cemeteries, PVP, hot spots. As an example, a Felucca small tower located at the entrance of Brit cemetery (a hot spot for PVP) sold for 2 million.

Things that can decrease a homes value include being in a heavy spawn area, having obstructions coming up through the floor of the home such as ferns (or even trees), or having PKs’ for neighbor (in Felucca).

11. Just how do I figure out if I can place a Large Tower where my current home(s) are at?

One of the best ways is to simply check other shards. The new Lake Austin shard may have your spot open, in which case get a land survey tool and find out. Be careful before qualifying the land for an upgrade based on the fact there is a tower in Felucca, remember the rules could have been different when it was placed. Be sure to read the top FAQ or Flippy’s Book of Housing on the footprints of a tower for those tough ones

12. How is it that some people own multiple houses on the same shard? Can I?
There are several ways this can be done:

They own multiple accounts, one house for each.
They have homes that were created long ago, when UO had different house owning rules. Houses like this are considered Grandfathered.
They owned 2 houses, one condemned due to the other being placed, but before they could sell one, OSI changed all condemned houses to Grandfathered (don’t ask why). (and yes, even Flippy had owned 2 small marbles on LS both which were refreshable)

Can You?
Yes! but it will cost you! /php-bin/shared/images/icons/frown.gif you can purchase an account that has grandfathered houses OR you can purchase another account.

13. . Vendors: How often do they pay themselves a day? How do I get rid of one I own? How do I get rid of one I do not own but is in my house?

After placing a vendor in your house, and stocking it, you say Vendor Status (or the vendors name followed by status, for example if I was your vendor you would say 'Flippy status')
For those of a quick eye, you'll notice that some information was quickly displayed but scrolled off. So to get all the information that the vendor just said you need to open your journal. Inside the journal you'll see that the vendor told you how much gold per day, and for how many days it can hold your stuff in both UO days and Real Days. Here is a quote from Hanse (UO Designer)

Here's the scoop and why it is displayed differently now...I'll repost this so everyone can see this information that reads this board.

The Vendor pay cycle does not pay out per UO day. It pays itself every 8 hours of real time. This means it is roughly 3 times per 24 hours. This does not include server maintenance, so the duration your vendor will last is actually slightly longer (depending on how long the shard is down).

So, the old report was wrong. The new report is more accurate.


So take the amount per UO day that they charge, multiply it by 3 and that figure is how much it will cost to operate them for 1 Real Life 'outside of the game' day.

With the new interface the number of real days is displayed. So this should not be a problem.

To get rid of a vendor you own simply empty it out, get all the gold, if then you can say [vendors name] dismiss.
To get rid of a vendor that you do not own but is in your house, you will need to page a GM. They will move the vendor away in to the woods.

14. How can I upgrade my current house to a larger house?

<center>A Short Guide to Buying Houses to Upgrade</center>
<center>by FFBooks</center>

Upgrading houses can be as profitable as IDOC camping, and avoids the frustration of camping a building for hours only to have someone place a split second before you, or having your machine seize up only minutes before the final decay. IDOC camping is also not possible for some people due to hardware difficulties. Working on house upgrading may therefore be a viable alternative as anyone can do it- regardless of system spec. However, it is not an "easy option" since it requires both the patience of a camper, as well as the persuasion skills of a bard.

This guide does not cover in detail the process of working out whether a building will fit or not- Flippy has already done a much better post than I could on that subject. Instead, it covers ways of getting in touch with owners, and how to come to a fair price for that property.

Sections in this guide
1: Finding suitable sites
2: Contacting owners
3: The Negotiation
4: The Large Tower
5: Upgrading

<center>Section One: Finding suitable sites</center>

The two essential tools you will need are:
UO Auto-map
UO Assist

If you do not have these two tools yet, get them immediately. For a serious realtor they are absolutely essential. UOAssist will cost $15, but after the short trial period you will wonder how you played without it...

Together, these tools will enable you to map out the houses on your shard, saving a copy of their positions on your HDD. Mapping can be achieved by simply running around the facets, coming with a screen or two of every house. The two facets are saved separately, and can be compared easily by simply flipping from one to the other.

<center>You will be amazed at how many small buildings there are on small tower spots, small towers on sandstone/log spots, and log cabins on villa spots</center>.

There are many house owners- particularly in Fel- who do not realise that their house is sitting on a site in which a larger house will fit. When you come across such a site, mark its position on Automap with a flag, and mark a rune. Just because a building is there on Fel, it does not guarantee that it will also fit in Tram. However, the chances are much better if it is "properly placed" already. Tram buildings should normally fit on Fel, but this is also not guaranteed. Read Flippy's article on what items block, and try to work out if there is anything in the terrain which will stop it.

Soon, you should have maps of your entire shard, covered with flags for upgrade potential and many runebooks filled with runes to these prime real estate sites. It's a good idea at this stage to arrange the runebooks in terms of preferred sites.

<center>Section Two: Contacting Owners</center>

Contacting the current owners of the site is the most difficult part of the process. Many only log in for short period of time per week, and so "catching" them when they're online can be very difficult. Below I make a number of suggestions on how to achieve this, but success is not guaranteed. [grin]

The best time to try this is at weekends, when most people play UO.

i) Some house owners leave their ICQ number on their house sign, or on a book locked down inside their house. These are the easy ones.

ii) Leave a book with your ICQ on their doorstep. The book will decay after about an hour. You may need to refresh the book a number of times each day by picking it up and putting it down again.

iii) Tame some animals and rename them: "IWantToBuyHouse" and "SeeBookOnStep", "SeeSignNextDoor" or "ICQ NinThreEigt..." etc and leave them inside the house. These will last longer than a book, but is less precise. You also can't put numbers in pet names, and don't have much room (grrrr).

iv) If you own a house next door, change your sign to give a message to the owner, and your ICQ.

v) Direct contact

This last section is where your runes come in most important. People will often wait inside their house, or (if Fel) sparring just outside it- particularly at the weekend. Since you now have books of runes to visit these properties, every now and then recall around the facets to visit each of these sites. This way, you can visit about 125 sites in thirty minutes. Four sweeps through (two hours) and you are bound to come across at least one, if not more than one owner.

If you are lucky enough to own a neighbouring house, then use your training time at that house, keeping your ears open for your neighbours footsteps or door openings. In your excitement you will often be banned from a house, in Fel, since the owner will think you're rushing in to attack. Have macros ("Can we talk?", "I'm interested in your house") ready. Often you will have only seconds between them arriving and logging out so you need to be quick!

vi) Owner-induced

Sometimes you will be lucky enough to find that the house is already on the market, either as indicated on the sign, on uo-auction or from a seller at Brit Bank (or similar). Since you already have the upgrade spots marked on Automap, you can tell instantly whether or not the site is one you're after. If someone is at Brit, offering to sell a building, always go and see- you never know, it might be one of the one's you're looking for!

<center>Section Three: Negotiation</center>

So you've found a potential site, you've contacted the owner and now you have to agree on a fair price for the site.

The owner will always want you to make the offer first.

Since you need to persuade someone to move out, unless the house was already for sale you will normally need to offer them above market value to persuade them to move. Although this hurts, be prepared to pay up to three times the normal value for a property, depending on the greed of the owner! Before you make the offer, always look at how well the house is furnished. If it is full of costly items, then you may find that no cash offer is good enough. If everything is cheap, or there is very little inside the house, your task will be much easier. They may demand a million for a small, but if that small blocks a Tower it is worth paying it.

At first, do not let the owner know your intentions. If they know that you want to upgrade to a larger house, they will either refuse to sell, or will raise their price accordingly. He will normally ask you why you want to buy the building, so be prepared with some vague answer. If you own a neighbouring house this is much easier ("I own the house next door").

To determine your maximum offer, you will need to:

Know the value of the new house (say 1.25 million)
Know the cost of the deed which you need to buy (say 100K)
Know the value of the deed you will get for the existing building (say 50K)

The maximum that you could pay for the house is then:

1.25 million - 100 K + 50 K

Or 1.2 million. If you pay any sum of money up to this, you will still be making a profit. However, you have spent time and effort trying to get the building, so should always keep at least some extra profit back. I recommend a 20% margin. For this building, then, I would suggest a maximum purchase price of 960K.

Your initial offer to the owner should be about 40% higher than the market value of his building. If you have a LOT of room to play with, offer more than 40%. Hopefully this will be below the 960K figure calculated above.

I always make my offer by saying:

"Well, a xxx in this area would normally get about xxx K."
"I could give you yyy K"

Hopefully yyy is larger than xxx! The figure you quote first (xxx) should always be to the higher end of the the range of possible values, since most people tend to think their houses are worth more than they actually are.

The owner WILL bargain upwards, but you should have left yourself room to breathe. Small Towers to Logs are good upgrades, since a log is normally worth between 3 and 5 times the Small Tower price. As long as you keep the above figure (960K, or whatever you calculated) in mind, you'll be fine.

Do not seem too eager to buy. If the seller does not wish to sell straight away, do not hurry him- it may take him time to move out. Take his ICQ and message him a few days later, but do not bombard him with ICQs.

The seller will often tell you that "Well, ok, but I need to find another place to move to first". If you have other similar buildings, this is your opportunity to sell as well!

If all else fails, and you cannot buy the property from the owner (some simply refuse to sell at a sensible price), then before you leave let the owner know what you had been hoping to do. At best, this will induce them to sell, at worst they will benefit from your work, but the housing pool on your shard will increase (which is a good thing).

<center>Section 4: The Large Tower (and other multi-house upgrades)</center>

Sometimes, the upgrade path will involve redeeding more than one house to build a larger one. This is often the most profitable route, since the resulting house is normally MUCH larger than the ones which made it up. However, this introduces new complications because you are taking a risk when you buy the first house, in that you may not be able to buy the others. It is always best to try to buy the first few houses as cheaply as possible, preferably at market rate. This way, you can at least get most of your gold back if it all goes wrong.

Personally, I prefer to negotiate for the largest building on the site first. The largest building is the most important in terms of cost- if the owner is willing to sell at only 10% above market value, then the upgrade is probably viable. However, if they want 80% more then the whole plan probably has to be put on hold. For the small buildings, since these are normally only a fraction of the cost of the larger one, it does not really matter if the owner wants 200% more than the market value. I therefore prefer to find out if the largest can be bought at a viable price first.

Once you have one building on the site, obtaining the others becomes easier. You have a sign to let your neighbours that you want their property (be careful about alerting them to your intentions). You have a safe place to sit and camp while training a skill. You can give a good reason to the seller as to why you want their house as well. You may also find that the person who sold you the first house knows the ICQ of his neighbours- always ask!

If your neighbour refuses to sell, then fear not- all is not lost! As a last resort, tell him what your intentions were, and offer to sell him your own building. He will often agree, at a price higher than you initially paid.

For Large Towers you will often need to buy three or more buildings to make the upgrade, and so will need multiple accounts, or friends to hold the buildings, while you collect them all together. Be prepared for a long drawn-out process and many, many hours training those useless crafting skills while you wait. It can often take longer to "camp" a neighbour than to camp an IDOC, but is at least as profitable. I'll probably end up with a 7xGM crafter, even though the money you get crafting is pitiful compared with trading in real-estate!

<center>Section Five: Upgrading</center>

The precautions needed before redeeding should by now be known, as they've been covered many times by others on this forum. However for completeness I restate them here again:

1) Check that the existing building is properly placed
2) Take a screenshot of the existing building, so you have the exact spot if you need to replace for some reason. Look on the spot on other shards to see if the building you want to place is there- if so, take a screenshot again.
3) Carry with you a deed for the building you want, a deed for the existing building type, and a smaller deed. If the new house does not fit as expected, you can replace the existing one. If someone else comes along while you are placing, you can easily slam down a small "blocking" house to try again (much) later.
4) The day before you are wanting to upgrade, hide near to the house sign and logout. When you login the next day you will be hidden, and won't be staring at the sign for five minutes prior to redeeding. It's better to give other people as few clues as possible.
5) If other people (the sellers?) know of your plans, wait a long time between acquiring and redeeding the property.
6) Before you make the upgrade, relax. Redeeding can be a nerve-wracking time. Unlike IDOCs, you can choose the moment that you collapse the building, so there's no hurry.
7) Destroy all addons, and remove all decorations/chests/barrels before you redeed. The less chance there is of having something block replacement through a bugged item the better.
8) Use "Tracking", "Detect Hidden", "Reveal" and Fire Walls beforehand to check to see if anyone else is there.
9) Test the upgrade first when the servers aren't saving.
10) Have footsteps turned on, and have the speakers LOUD. This will alert you if anyone else is coming.
11) Make the upgrade late at night, or early in the morning, when other people aren't around.
12) Have a "last object" macro set up. If your first place fails, this wil save you valuable time getting the ghost image up again.
13) Bring along a TRUSTED friend to keep watch for you and alert you of any people coming. They may need to place for you, if you panic and can't get the spot. Make sure your friend isn't moving around constantly within earshot, as his footsteps will make you more nervous/interfere with warning if someone else is coming.

14) For multiple-house redeeds, pass one to the friend first, so that both can be redeeded without you having to logout/login with your other account. For three, four or five house redeeds (that elusive Large Tower) you may need to enlist help from the boardies.

Upgrading is profitable, exciting, and can give great satisfaction (well, for me at least!). So... good luck!

16 Aug 2001

15. How do I look for a place to put my new house deed?
Hole Hunting in a nutshell

Okay... The topic has come up enough to where I think a tutorial of sorts is needed. Before I start I want to make one thing absolutely clear - do not ask me for any house map files. I think of mapfiles as a rite of passage - If you want to get a house (and place many others), you have to do your time doing the mundane stuff before you get to have fun. If you can't walk a shard once, why do you think you'll take the time to walk the shard looking for spots? This is not a quick and easy process by any stretch of the imagination.

Now for the fun /php-bin/shared/images/icons/wink.gif

<ul>[*]UO AutoMap[*]UO Assist[*]Patience and Persistance[/list]
I recommend that you let UOAM build the quickest files possible, don't display statics, and set houses so they are filtered at 1/2X.. I forget the other settings offhand but those are the big ones.

All you are doing is mapping where houses fit on one server and looking at the same or another shard looking for the "differences". You can find open spots or upgrades by using this technique. That is the ultimate goal of this FAQ.

Making a map
First of all we need a mapfile. Don't add your houses to one of the files that comes with UOAM because if it auto-updates, you'll lose all of your work. Try to name your mapfile something meaningful (if you walk multiple shards try using something like Shard-Month-Year - My names are goofy in the example do what I say not what I do /php-bin/shared/images/icons/wink.gif )

From UOAM Toolbar go to Places-&gt;Edit or Go To Labels-&gt;Files tab


Click Add and type something in.


Now go to the UOAssist tab.


Make sure that you select the file name and check the Show items on UO's Radar Map.... You're ready to start mapping on your favorite shard. Remember: You're logging. If you switch shard without disabling logging, you're going to overwrite your map file.

Newbify yourself, get a horse, a few runes, a runebook, and a few mark scrolls. Now go run around like crazy. Make sure you run through the woods and the most obscure places you can find! RUN EVERYWHERE!!!

I can't remember who posted mapping Asian shards because the placement is "truer" or something like that. It's a good idea.. I'm doing exactly that right now.. trouble is I'm lazy and kind of burned out w/UO right now.. anyways...

Once you have completed mapping, disable logging and the "display items shown in UO's Radar Map" and go to another shard. I use the Radar in large mode and UOAM in 1X view.. double click UOAM's window to make it lay on top of UO. If you arrange them right it should look like this. For this example I logged into test shard (Radar) with a Chessy house file.


Take a look - The area you can actively see in the radar view is displayed -


Where are the holes?- Here -


It's possible to use the same map files for Trammel and Fellucia. On the Files tab, there is a place on the lower right hand corner where you can override your current settings - Useful for displaying a Trammel house file while you're in Fel. It's also possible to use UOAM only by disabling logging and having "Display items that show up in UO's Radar Map" checked while walking another shard. It's real interesting to see what fits where and you will be able to see the overlap - however you may miss some holes if you aren't paying close attention.

UOAM logs house coordinates by the house's front door (I believe).. The spot UOAM tells you to place is wrong. Zoom UOAM to 8X view and walk to the spot yourself /php-bin/shared/images/icons/wink.gif If you have a wheel mouse, it's possible to select the zoom by clicking on UOAM and rolling your wheel back and forward. Easy enough.

If you're on a heavily populated shard, you'll notice some spots that overlap. I'd look into upgrading if you see that the area is large enough.

Do not get hung up if you can't place. The house on the other shard may have been improper. Terrain changes and house placement rules seem to change by the day. Mark a rune - If the spot looks wide open and you're getting the "invalid terrain" message, it may be worth your while to page a GM.. Your results may vary, more often than not I get the orange button.. don't get dissuaded, it's all about patience and persistence.

Ghost Mapping
Running around looking at the map file and radar window instead of the main window can be nauseating and your character can be seriously killed. If you're newbified your equipment is safe and you can continue to run the shard as a ghost without worrying about that silly "death" thing! Ghost mapping the Trinsic swamps or peninsula south of Destard is highly recommended. It's fairly difficult to pay attention to maps while you have Giant Serpents on your tail and you're running into impassible objects every 4 seconds ... You can still map houses as a ghost!!!

We are still in Phase 1 1/2.. The time to map is now.

Side Notes
Your UOAM files can get kind of big, and when that happens UOAM will slow down and appear to lock up when you add/remove houses or try to change map files. Your UO client can lag severely if this hapens. I'm running a P3 500, it may or may not lock up your 50 bigahertz CPU.
If you know someone that's good at data mangling, try to optimize the list by placing it in X Y Sort order - it seems to speed up UOAM.

Happy hunting!


Editors note: Cpl was asked a few good questions so Im putting the questions along with answers below

RPGgirl Asked:

What would be your suggestion for doing this, if you have all your slots are filled in the shard you would like to place with chars that you don't want to delete- just do it as ghost?

I guess I didnt understand that part. Also the part about mapping the Asian shards- is that a good idea even if you dant want to place on those shards? I couldn't understand if you were suggesting running around more than once (I will I just wanted to make sure that is what the system is)


Sarsmi Answered:

There are two things that he is doing here. The first is mapping, or creating an image file of where all the houses are. So now you have a picture to go by. It's good to do it as a ghost so you won't have to worry about heavy spawn chasing you everywhere, and good to do on asian shards (supposedly) because they are more tidy about their space. Once all the houses start falling it will create holes, so when you have your automap open showing you the map you previously made, you can compare it to what you see on your UO radar screen. So say on the map you have made there is a large tower with a small tower right behind it. But on the UO radar the small tower is gone - now you know that there was once a tower there and you can try and place. It's a great system, but its still time consuming (making the map takes hours alone and you still have to scout). Oh, and you can map one shard and play another, or map one facet and compare to the other on your own shard. The map is just an image of what you saw.


Lilirith Asked:

I am a little slow and kinda new.. do places that you can put a house show up as red spots?..or how do you know you can place a house there?


Cpl Answered:

The red dots are the difference between what the previously mapped and current shard has. It's the holes that you have to look for with your eyes. I don't know of any applications or magic tools that will show you available house placement spots.. If that were the case, my job would be rather boring (well.. more boring than it is now ...)


15. AoS FAQ

Q) How will houses be placed after AoS is released?

A) The existing deed system will be replaced by a Housing Tool. This tool will allow the placement of "Dirt Plots", which are basically foundations for a customised house, as well as all 20 of the current house types.

Since you need to start from a dirt plot to customise a house, you cannot change just PART of an existing house- you need to start from scratch.

The basic tool is fairly cheap, and can be used to place any customised dirt plot size. However, when you use the tool to place a dirt plot, the cost of that plot will be taken directly from your bank account (make sure there's enough gold there!). The large the plot, the more it costs to use the tool to place it.

Q) What's the largest house size that can be placd in Malas?

A) 18x18 customised plots.

Q) What will happen to existing house deeds if they're being replaced?

A) If you have a house deed in your bank, or in your backpack, you will be refunded the price you paid for the deed, and will be given a free housing tool. Any deeds locked down, or in a house secure will not be replaced. You'll therefore keep the deed, but will not be able to use it to place a house (like tent deeds now).

Q) What about existing house? Can these be customised?

A) Keeps, Castles and L-Shapes cannot. For all other house types you can securely change the house to a dirt plot which can then be customised. Towers can be customised, but doing this will lose the "wings" on the roof. In other words, all dirt plots are rectangular. All facets- Trammel, Fel and Malas- can have customised houses.

Q) And for grandfathered/improper houses?

A) Grandfathered house can be changed to a house plot/customised without condemning other houses on the account. However, you cannot change the footprint of the house in any way.

Improper houses will probably be treated in the same way- no confirmed information has been given.

Q) What will happen to my existing house if I place in Malas?

A) Your existing house will become condemned, and will decay within 5-7 days of you placing your Malas home. You can only uncondemn this house by redeeding it, or selling it to another player.

Q) What happens to my secures and locked-down items?

A) If you are changing your house to an dirt plot, all items (including addons and vendors, according to OSI) will be placed securely and accessible via the house sign. If you are moving from Trammel/Fel to Malas, items in your current house can only be moved in yur backpack, or on a pack-animal. For 5-7 days though, you will be able to own both houses so will have time to move everything out.

Q) Can the footprint of existing houses be increased securely?

A) Unfortunately not. To increase the footprint of your house you need to redeed it, and then place the larger plot- much as you need to now to upgrade. You can change to a dirt plot securely, and can probably *move* your house securely, but upgrading securely has now been ruled out.

Q) How much will a customised house cost?

A) The dirt plot will be cheaper than a house deed of the same size, but a fully customised house will probably cost about 2.5 times the cost of the same size deed.

Q) How large will dirt plots be?

A) Up to 18x18 ("Fortresses") tiles at the base, and 3 stories/plus a roof high. This is huge, as it gives floor space 50% larger than the current towers! To give an idea, Towers have about 840 useable tiles, Keeps have around 800, Castles 1400, and Fortresses will have 1300. However, be aware that not all towers can be upgraded to the full 18x18, and that some Marble Patios can.

Q) Where can I place a dirt plot?

A) The rules for placing houses are not going to change- if an object currently blocks, it will continue to block after AoS is released. Therefore, dirt plots can only be placed where houses currently exist.
If the housing tool allows placement of small houses (6x6), then many new house spots will be created. However, OSI have not mentioned in any way the minimum allowable size.

Q) How many secures/lockdowns will dirt plots have?

A) At this time, no information has been given.

Q) Do I need AoS to be able to customised my house?

A) Yes.

Q) Will I be able to see other people's customised houses if I don't buy AoS?

A) Yes.

Q) How is Malas placement going to work?

A) Malas will be opened on a regional basis. That is, when AoS is released in your country, servers based in that country will have Malas activated. Malas (and housing) will therefore not be open on Drachenfels and Europa until AoS ships in Europe, and similarly for the Asian shards. Placement is most likely to be a landrush/first come first served basis.

Thanks go out to the following people for helping to create this FAQ (in order ofThanks go out to the following people for helping to create this FAQ (in order of alphabet): Cpl Punishment, FenrisT2a, Freyja, Frustrated Nomad, Kofu, RealJones, Swiftwind, uorealtor, Flippy, FFBooks.

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