Greetings Fellow Avatars! Here’s what we have for you in this week’s edition of Update of the Avatar:
- Mistrendur: Land Rush Starts Tomorrow!
- Episode 2 Q&A Livestream!
- Megalopolis: New Town Size Available!
- Darkstarr Vault Round Part II!
- New Store Items: Fancy Sink & Fancy Toilet with Geometric Patterns!
- Lord Darkstarr Sighting!
- Party Size Increase in Player Test Environment (QA)!
- Bard Skills in Player Test Environment (QA)!
- Streaming the Player Test Environment (QA) Now Permitted!
- March Login Reward: Leprechaun Hat!
- Release 75 Reward Program Exclusive Login Items: St. Patrick’s Day Theme!
- Streaming Reward Program
- Lord of the Isle Episode 2 Bundles
- Recent Shroud of the Avatar Livestreams (YouTube)
- Upcoming Events Calendar
- Meretz: Win a Pirate Galleon Dry Dock Town Home (No Trade)
- Community Event: Britannian Mining Company Recruitment Event!
- Community Event: Release 75 Dance Party!
- Community Event: Podcasts & Poetry Return to Virtue Radio!
- Community Event: Mad Splatter Tea Party!
- Project to Support: Jar Wars
- Project to Support: Dragon Fight
- Project to Support: Crowfall
- Project to Support: Pantheon
- Project to Support: Avatar Express
- Resources: Players Helping Players
Mistrendur: Land Rush Starts Tomorrow!
By royal decree, the process details for the Mistrendur land rush have been issued to the peoples of New Britannia! Players made reservations to add or move towns to Mistrendur some time ago, and the time to begin selecting locations comes this weekend!
The official announcement thread is ready and full of information about the land rush proceedings! Tomorrow, on Saturday, March 14, Noon CT, we’ll officially begin collecting land rush selection submissions and organizing the data collected for the first bracket. Let those entries roll in — we’re ready for them! If you have any last minute questions or concerns, reply to the official announcement thread, or contact Elgarion on the forums via forum conversation.
- The site selections will be made in the sequence the reservation vouchers were purchased.
- The first bracket of players commence site selection on Saturday, March 14, Noon CT.
- For more information, please read the official announcement in the forums.
This new land mass is just one exciting new feature arriving this year. Read more about what’s on the horizon in Shroud of the Avatar’s 2020 Vision!
Episode 2 Q&A Livestream!
Another weekly Community Livestream is this Friday, Mar 13 at 4PM CT on Twitch! Join Chris Spears a.k.a. Atos and other developer team members today for a community 1 hour livestream!
Join us today! We’ll be ready to answer any questions about the land rush in Mistrendur as well as other Episode 2 topics broached by the community. Hope to see you all there!
To enter the prize drawings, type “march to a different tune” into any in-game chat channel OR make a purchase on the website add-on store. Please submit questions into Twitch Chat by inserting !question at the beginning of your text. Watch on Twitch today, Friday at 4 PM CT!
Megalopolis: New Town Size Available!
After the Municipality town size became available, the Player Owned Town (POT) governors of New Britannia demanded even larger town size upgrade options! And more upgrade options they shall receive! Now, players of Shroud of the Avatar can upgrade their POTs to the size of Megalopolis. NPC Buildings, NPCs, Decoration Limits and Light Limits scale as follows:
Darkstarr Vault Round Part II!
The current round of Vault items are available until Friday, March 27 at 10:30 AM CST. At that time, the next round of 9 items will be available for two weeks, and then the next, etc.
- Darkstarr 1-Handed Sword
- Darkstarr Staff
- Darkstarr Dagger
- Darkstarr Throne
- Darkstarr Coronated Chain Helm
- Darkstarr Wand
- Interior Sized Obsidian Obelisk
- Kobold Four-Story Row Home
- Mosh Dance Emote
New Store Items: Fancy Sink & Fancy Toilet with Geometric Patterns!
Additional Crown Store goodies arriving during Release 75 include a Fancy Sink with Geometric Patterns as well as a matching Fancy Toilet. Recently added were three Gothic Furniture Sets, a Gothic King Sized Bed and a variety of Gothic Chandeliers with varying chain lengths. Also new to the Crown Store this release are the Dyable Heraldry Gustball Uniforms. Let the more stylin’ Gustball tourneys begin! Lots of great decoration items became available recently, such as the 8 amazing non-player characters (NPC) readied for the player created dialogue scripting system! These new type of NPC’s are known as Conversationalists.
- Fancy Sink II (Geometric Pattern)
- Fancy Toilet II (Geometric Pattern)
- Gothic Furniture Mega Set
- Gothic Furniture Dining Set
- Gothic Furniture Bedroom Set
- Gothic King Sized Bed with Black Leather
- Gothic Chandeliers (4 Varieties)
- Dyable Heraldry Gustball Uniforms
- Conversationalist (Female, 4 Varieties)
- Conversationalist (Male, 4 Varieties)
Lord Darkstarr Sighting!This just in! Darkstarr (a.k.a. Starr Long and Lord Blackthorn) has been sighted! Fans of Shroud of the Avatar eagerly await the return of our beloved Lord of Chaos, but until that time comes… please enjoy this newscast from Austin, TX!
Party Size Increase in Player Test Environment (QA)!
Avatars! Exciting news! Patched into the Player Test Environment (QA), the first iteration of Party/Raid type lovin’ for this year has arrived — Parties of 12! Players can test this new feature and provide crucial feedback to the development team on the Player Test Environment (QA) forums. Players will no longer be limited to 8 members in their party, and will soon be able to group with others in a party of 12! Once this new feature is fully tested on QA, it will push to the live server!
Expanding the capabilities of adventure parties is just one of the exciting new features to arrive this year. Read more about what’s on the horizon in the Shroud of the Avatar 2020 Vision!
Bard Skills in Player Test Environment (QA)!
The bard skill tree is still available on the Player Test Environment (QA) server. Indicated in the picture above, one of the new spell effects whirls around the bard in a spiral of magical and musical notation. We’re hard at work adding additional visual and audio effects, but players can now experiment with many of these new abilities and provide crucial feedback to the development team on the Player Test Environment (QA) forums. QA testers can train these skills by visiting the Advanced Skills Tactics Trainer in Desolis. Here’s a list of 5 recently added abilities, but keep in mind a total of 16 bard skills will be featured:
- Savage Sonata: AoE enrage ability
- Chorus of Conservation: AoE focus cost reduction for party members
- Rhythmic Readiness: Passive skill that reduces ability casting time
- Resounding Reach: Passive skill which increases range of abilities
- Musical Fortitude: Passive skill which increases duration of abilities
Streaming the Player Test Environment (QA) Now Permitted!
Streamers of Shroud of the Avatar are now welcome to stream gameplay of their Player Test Environment (QA) experiences! We hope this new option will inspire increased new feature testing before these features go to the live server. When streaming from QA, please be sure to notify your audience that you are testing new and unfinalized features on the test server.
March Login Reward: Leprechaun Hat!
Just in time for Saint Patty’s Day, Avatars! Be sure to log in sometime between March 1st and 31st to receive this special and festive Leprechaun Hat! This clover-sporting gem of green headwear is a must have for any would-be celebrator this season. Enjoy!
Release 75 Reward Program Exclusive Login Reward Items: Saint Patrick’s Day Theme!
It’s time for all things green, Avatars! So don’t get pinched! Rewards Program exclusive login reward items for Release 75 are St. Patrick’s Day themed! Reward Program members will receive these exclusive items immediately upon logging in during Release 75!
- Clover Pavers
- Leprechaun Statue
- Pot o’ Gold with Rainbow Effects
NOTE: You must login during the release to receive each release’s exclusive rewards.
The Shroud of the Avatar Rewards Program lets you earn the best rate on purchasing Crowns, AND receive exclusive monthly reward items!
- 900 Crowns of the Obsidians every month
- Exclusive Monthly Login Reward Items (~ 3 per month)
- Exclusive Title every 3 months
- 3 Months: Keeper of the Faith
- 6 Months: Keeper of the Word
- 9 Months: Keeper of the Vow
- 12 Months: Keeper of the Flame
- 15 Months: Keeper of the Oath
- 18 Months: Keeper of the Pledge
- Pick any Dye 12 Pack every 6 months
- Pick any three of the 7 Obsidian Potions every month, including:
- Potion of Capacity: Increases carrying capacity
- Potion of Conservation: Reduces reagent use chance
- Potion of Expedience: Swift gathering on all gathering skills
- Potion of Precision: Increases Meticulous Collection to all gathering skills
- Potion of Preservation: Reduces armor and weapon damage
- Potion of Reclamation: Increases Salvage and Repair to all production skills
Are You a Livestreamer?
Soon, the Streaming Reward Program will be returning. As the details are getting reworked, we’ll reveal more information. Traditional streaming rewards included an exclusive in-game Streamer Camera for being a veteran of our Streaming Program! Expect the camera reward to return! More goodies will come to your way as the program fully develops. Thank you for streaming Shroud of the Avatar!
Lord of the Isle Episode 2 Bundles
As one of the biggest and earliest supporters of Episode 2 you will be granted the largest lot deed in the land (Castle), the title Lord (or Lady) of the Isle, a tour of Lord British’s property, and dinner with the game leaders including Lord British himself! Only 24 of these unique bundles will be sold!
Complete List of Rewards:
- Lord of the Isle Place Anywhere Castle Lot Deed: Tax Free Forever (when placed in a POT) and Tax Free for 1 Year (when placed outside of a POT). Placeable on water as well as land!
- Title: Lord of the Isle or Lady of the Isle
- Unique Lord of the Isle Home
- NEW – Town Size Upgrade (if a town is not owned by the LOTI supporter, they may gift this size upgrade to another town owner. Maximum possible town sizes will be taken into account, but the Megalopolis size just became available!)
- Festival of the Avatar FULL ticket (which includes admission, King’s Dinner, Barons Men Play, A Heraldry Banner) and one additional guest at a discounted rate.
- PLUS Choice of any 1 House currently available in the store
- Castle Basement currently available in the store of your choice
- Castle Wall Set currently available in the store of your choice (with enough for Castle Lot)
- Unique Lord of the Isle Dungeon Room
- 140,000 Crowns
- 999 Bank Slots
- Pick 12 Prosperity Tools
- 2 Unique in-game items (to be revealed later)
- Early Access to Episode 2
- Episode 1 Box and map signed by the team
- 1 hour one on one with Chris for design discussion (via video-conference)
- One real silver ring crafted personally by Lord British: Numbered 1 – 8
- In-game version of the Lord British ring: Numbered 1 – 8 (including a place-able decoration version)
- Tour of Lord British’s property
- Fine dinner and drinks with Lord British, Darkstarr, & Atos at a location TBD in Austin or NYC.
NOTE: Digital items that are currently available will begin delivery as soon as Release 62 (Jan 31). Other items will be delivered at a future date TBD.
NOTE: Travel costs NOT covered by Catnip Games for Tour & Dinner.
Recent Shroud of the Avatar Livestreams (YouTube)
Atos and other members of the Shroud of the Avatar development team go live very frequently on our TWO Twitch Channels: twitch.tv/shroudoftheavatar and twitch.tv/communityoftheavatar — be sure to get these channels on follow and get the latest information right as we go live! Also, if you’ve missed our latest streams, check out our archive of content at our YouTube Channel (complete with “Mojito the dog” cam). Like! Follow! Subscribe! Prizes!!!
Don’t forget to also join the Shroud of the Avatar team and community over at our other social media venues:
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ShroudoftheAvatar/
- Catnip Games Twitter: https://twitter.com/catnipgames
- Shroud of the Avatar Twitter: https://twitter.com/ShroudofAvatar
- Shroud of the Avatar Discord: https://discord.gg/GuBXakQ
Upcoming Events Calendar
Be sure to check out the Community Events section of the forum for events hosted by our wonderful community members! Below is a list of additional events as the year progresses:
Mar 26 – Release 76
Apr 30 – Release 77
May 28 – Release 78
June 25 – Release 79
July 30 – Release 80
Aug 27 – Release 81
Meretz: Win a Pirate Galleon Dry Dock Town Home (No Trade)
Think: in-game SotA goodies, Sweepstakes entries and tons more. With Meretz, we launch several sweepstakes every month. This month, we’re giving away a Pirate Galleon Dry Dock Town Home (No Trade) to a lucky winner! AND, use your MPs every day for in-game items like potions and emotes.
What’re you waiting for? Download Meretz TODAY!
Community Events: Britannian Mining Company Recruitment Event!
The Britannian Mining Company is looking for new members! For the month of March, we will be holding ‘Meet & Greet’ events every Friday. Meet and chat with guild members, ask questions, check out the town of Blackrock Cove and let us show you the benefits of being part of the BMC! Founded June 6, 1998 in Ultima Online and establishing in Shroud of the Avatar in 2013, the BMC is knowledgeable in most aspects of the game. We are more than just miners! There is a place for adventurers of all kinds – there are no restrictions on what type of player you want to play!
Meet & Greet Events will take place:
- March 13, 2020 @ 8-9pm CST/NBT
- March 20, 2020 @ 8-9pm CST/NBT
- March 27, 2020 @ 8-9pm CST/NBT
We will be throughout the world chatting and answering questions. Feel free to come straight to Blackrock Cove and visit our Recruitment Center – or just PM and add any of us as a friend and we will help you get you there! Each of us is proud to carry the name of BMC – and we are happy to make you part of our family. You don’t have to wait for these events! If you are interested, feel free to check out our website and/or Discord server. One of our Emesarries or Ambassadors will be happy to get your application started. For more information, see the original post on the forums…
Community Events: Release 75 Dance Party
Virtue/Avatars Radio Presents the Release 75 Dance Party & Stress Test
Location: @Ragnarr Lodbrok’s Skalabrekka nested in Starfield (map)
Host/DJ: Celith Wraine
When: Sunday, March 22nd, 12:00 – 2:00 PM CST
Come out and sport some awesome dance moves, trade emotes and recipes, chat with friends, launch off fireworks and simply have a lot of fun! Find out more information on Alleine’s orignal post! If you’d like to learn how YOUR town can become a site for upcoming dance parties, find out here!
Community Events: Podcasts & Poetry Return to Virtue Radio
Attention Avatars! After a long absence, Podcasts and Poetry are returning to Virtue Radio! The Shroud of the Avatar community is INCREDIBLY creative, and over the last five years, many community members have composed short stories, poems, and other creative works. Asclepius, along with a number of other narrators have had the privilege of rendering them into audio form. There is a huge vault of podcasts on the Caverns site with well over 200 amazing creative contributions.
So after fiddling with the broadcast software, Asclepius now offers to share them with you. This is planned to be a regular WEEKLY segment, about an hour in duration. Listen in and you will hear a curated selection of short stories and poems, interspersed with some great community music.
When: Monday Evenings at 7 PM CST
How to Listen: There are two methods to tune in to Virtue Radio
- Utilize your in-game Aether Vibration Devices for Avatar’s/Virtue Radio (radios, clockwork pets, clockwork helms, etc.)
- Simply point your browser to Avatar’s/Virtue Radio: https://zcu.io/jXP8
For more information about these reoccurring broadcasts on Avatar’s/Virtue Radio, please contact Asclepius on his forum post about this topic.
Community Events: Mad Splatter Tea Party
The Mad Splatter Tea Party takes place every 3rd or 4th Sunday of the month, which is a tea party in my back garden at my home in Jade Valley. There are drinks and eats, there is sometimes music, there are often party games with prizes, and sometimes we just sit and talk about life in Novia. Not only are you welcome to join us but I would like to find out how to have this added to the community calendar here in the forums.
Location: Lily Byrd’s Cottage and tea garden is south of the Hall of Inquiry and Learning.
Time: Every 3rd or 4th Sunday of the month, 3ish CST
Attire: This is a role playing event tea party come as your avatar
We play games, we eat cake and drink…various teas and drinks… There are goofy prizes for winning games if we play them. See you there, Lily Byrd.
Project to Support – Jar Wars
While you are delving into Virtual Reality (VR), be sure check out this exciting and hilarious new game, Jar Wars! Our very own Darkstarr has been busy on some side projects, one of which is Jar Wars, a slapstick multiplayer game made just for VR enthusiasts. Battle your friends with wacky weapons and intriguing gadgets for total domination of the Moon! Available for free on Steam!
Project to Support – Dragon Fight
Darkstarr has also been hard at work with the team for Dragon Fight VR which recently went live on Steam! Dragon Fight VR is an internal experiment to capture the “essence” of a dragon fight, the classic penultimate experience of every fantasy story. We wanted to create a short visceral, realistic experience stripped of user interface, lobbies, scores, levels, and other visual intrusions that might distract. There were some key elements of fighting a dragon that we wanted to capture and we felt VR was uniquely qualified to convey:
- Face to face with a large scale hostile creature trying to kill you
- Using a sword and a shield
- Nowhere to run!
This started out as an internal experiment to learn some things about VR’s capabilities, be reductionist in our designs, etc. We felt that the experiment was successful enough to release as a free experience to share. Enjoy! Available for free on Steam!
Project to Support – Crowfall
Be part of shaping the next great MMO by becoming a Crowfall Backer! Crowfall is the first and only online Throne War game. You can win. Join intense PvP battles that demand strategy, survival and a fierce competitive spirit. Reap the spoils of war as an Eternal Champion!
Claim virtual territory on behalf of your guild or faction. Capture mines, mills, and quarries to secure resources, build castles, and besiege your neighbors. Scavenge artifacts and relics from the Dying Worlds and install them in your temples to grant blessings to your vassals. Capture lost spirits to do your bidding — or bind them into your weapons to infuse them with sorcerous power!
Project to Support – Pantheon Rise of the Fallen
Pantheon: Rise of the Fallen takes place on the high-fantasy world of Terminus, a wildly diverse land formed from fragments of many different realms and times, bringing with them their unique civilizations and deities. Explore long lost realms, as their people and cultures vie for power and form alliances, struggling to gain a foothold in an unfamiliar world. Uncover civilizations and awe-inspiring locales that offer incredible adventures for you and your friends to experience. Enter a world where the environment itself tells the story and where content is always king!
UPDATE: We were stunned to learn of the untimely passing of Brad McQuaid recently. He was one of the true pioneers and visionaries of our industry who brought Everquest to us. We have few words that can express how much we respect him; so we choose to honor him with a flaming sword tomb in Brittany Graveyard that reads: “Aradune: For the Brightest Flame Burns the Least Long”.
Project to Support – Avatar Express
I’m pleased to report that The Avatar Express is clacking away furiously. News is being delivered and we have established systems to deliver it directly to your brain. You can use one of those systems by following us on Twitter at @avatar_express. Even more reliable due to its fully automated nature is joining us on the Discord server. News items are posted there via RSS. Or you can subscribe to RSS directly on the site.
If you run an event, quests, etc, please consider helping out by self reporting. The Shroud community is big, and many things are happening that are never seen by others. With 10k monthly users, we would need a full time staff to track down everything that is happening.
You can fill out the contributor form, message @that_shawn_guy here or post in the Discord server that you would like to help. There is no committment once signed up, you can post as much or little as you like.
Writing up your own events has several benefits beyond the immidiate exposure. It serves as a record for others to see the history of New Britannia as we create it, in an attractive format. Publishing in the Express also has a higher chance than the forums of being seen by search engines and random readers, thus bringing more eyeballs and new players to the game.
It will even make posting in the forums easier! You can upload images to your news item, and then link to those images in your forum post. No more need for 3rd party image hosts!
So if you have something going on in your guild or town, or want to be a Reporter, Cartographer or Historian, please join us!
Resources – Players Helping Players
The official SotA New Player Welcome Forum and the Player Created Resources Forum have the best player created resources for Shroud of the Avatar, whether it’s a Player Written Guide, a Video Walk-through, or a Wiki-type Website.
Visit the official Community Resources page for a complete listing of all things community.