Update of the Avatar #44 – 10/18/13: Lord of the Manor Home, Crafting Sigil, Story Sneak Peek #2, Avatar Outfits, Basements, Scene Jam Results, & More!

Greetings Fellow Avatars!

Welcome to this week’s edition of Update of the Avatar! More cool stuff to share, including:

  • The Crafting Sigil
  • Another Story Sneak Peek
  • More Avatar Outfits
  • SWAG: T-shirts and Coins
  • Lord of the Manor Event
  • Lord of the Manor City Home
  • More Basements
  • Unity Scene Jam Results
  • Recruit-A-Friend Contest

The Crafting Sigil


The Crafting Sigil displays the three rings of Crafting: Gathering, Refining and Production. Each ring contains five different skills. The innermost ring is the Gathering Ring and includes: Mining, Forestry, Agriculture, Field Dressing, and Foraging. The middle ring is the Refining Ring and includes: Smelting, Milling, Textiles, Tanning, and Butchery. The outermost ring is the Production Ring and includes Blacksmithing, Carpentry, Tailoring, Cooking, and Alchemy.

The rings represent the paths required to make items. For instance you use Mining to get Ore. You then smelt that Ore into sheets, wire, ingots, and sword blanks. Finally you use those smelted items to create weapons, armor, and tools.


Here is Stephen Daniele’s concept piece and burnished wood version:



Story Sneak Peek

“…it shall come to pass four long centuries after the fall
There shall come one from beyond the circles of the sundered moon
Who shall bind the world together once again
From its shattered stone and boiled seas…”

— The Dire Prophecies

Greetings, traveller. I am Arabella, and I have been sent to find you. There are those who believe you are the one of whom the prophecies speak. A great burden, and a great destiny, if in fact you are the one foreseen…

In this appointed hour, we have been taught to expect one from another world, one distant from ours in both time and space… the world of Earth, of Lord British. Yes, he remains with us, and if all goes well, he hopes to meet you on your travels…

Yet, there are paths that you must walk, as the prophecies foretold. There are many who would challenge your place here, in the lands of New Britannia. There are many who have forsaken the virtues, and embraced a world out of balance. This, too, was forseen.

However, what you must always remember, traveller, is that prophecy is but a guide. Your destination may become clear, but what you make of it, and how you shape the world in your wake, is up to you. I beseech you, always remember this… and let it guide you. Always remain true to yourself, and to the virtues. For the sake of New Britannia, you must.

Where shall you begin then, traveller?

Among the seekers of truth, the elvenfolk of legend, lost in the mists of their own illusions? Can you find your way, the way of Truth, among so many who have lost their own?

Or what of the shields of courage, the brave lords of the northwestern lands who act as bulwarks, fighting in the endless war against the kobolds who shape technology and magic to challenge the dominance of man? Will you have the Courage to understand why they still fight, and will they?

Perhaps your path will begin where the dead rise again in torment, the undead armies of Spite, who have stolen compassion itself in a cold fury aimed at everyone yet alive? Can you find Love in a land so stricken with hatred?

The map lies open before you, traveller. It is only for you to choose the path of your destiny. For at your path’s end, as the prophecies have forseen, you must face the hidden ruler of this world, and then you will need all the wisdom our world can teach you…

And at that time, only fate can know what time holds in store for you. For us all.

It is time to choose, traveller…

In case you missed the Story Sneak Peek in our last update, you can check it out here.

More Avatar Outfits!

It’s been a while since we showed new male avatar outfits, but Geoff Mellon, Isaac Oster, and Kevin Wells have new Cloth, Leather, and Plate outfits to share:







Finally, Some SotA SWAG!

It’s been a long time coming, but we finally have SWAG available in our brand new Merchandise Store! Mr. Mustache Man (Tassilo Philipp) has been burning the midnight oil to integrate a new e-commerce package into our website, and it went live today!

Sigil T-Shirts

T-shirts are the most requested SWAG, so now we’ve got them! The team was so excited about the Sigil symbols that we decided to use them for our first t-shirt designs, now available in the Merchandise Store! Here are our very own Men of the Avatar to model the new t-shirts (from left to right: Chris Spears, Justin Gilbert, Richard Garriott, Kevin Wells, Isaac Oster):


SotA Collector’s Coin

You may recall in Update #41 we revealed the Founder Collector’s Coin, the result of an eighty-seven email brainstorming thread between our team and community members Frank Baxley (Sir Frank) and Joseph Toscholog (Vitralis/Rustic Dragon). The design utilized the SotA logo, crest, and a liberal helping of Dame Lori’s runic font. The Founder Collector’s Coin is only available as a reward at the Collector pledge level (and above). However, we are making a modified Collector’s Coin available in the Merchandise Store:


Lord of the Manor Event

One of the rewards for our Lord of the Manor Pledge Level is:

Join Richard “Lord British” Garriott in a personal tour of the actual Britannia Manor and its collections

We had our first such Lord of the Manor event at Britannia Manor in New York City on October 5, 2013. As a special, unplanned treat, Joseph Toschlog (Rustic Dragon of Hearth of Britannia) volunteered to cater the event with his original recipes, some of which are adapted from Richard’s past Ultima games. Three Lord of the Manors, and their guests, were able to join us for this event.


[Left Photo: The Lords; from left to right: Steve Dang, Richard Garriott, Thomas Caplan, Francisco Vigil.   Right Photo: from left to right: Dallas Snell, Greg Roe, Steve Dang, Baby Kinga, Richard Garriott, Laetitia Garriott de Cayeux, Thomas Caplan, Matthew Burns, Francisco Vigil, Miriam Safady]

We just had to have a picture of everyone in Richard and Laetitia’s glorious thrones:


[Richard, Baby Kinga, and Laetitia in central photo and standing in center of all throne photos.  From top-left going clockwise: Franciso Vigil & Miriam Safady, Thomas Caplan & Matthew Burns, Steve Dang & Greg Roe, Joseph Toschlog & Aleksandra Phillips, Daxon Snell & Dallas Snell]

Here we have the Hearth of Britannia buffet and some of the all-day-long meal preparations by Rustic Dragon (Joseph Toschlog) and his companion, Aleksandra Phillips:


Ah, what a glorious feast Rustic Dragon hath prepared for us all:


[From far-left going clockwise: Richard Garriott, Laetitia Garriott de Cayeux, Dallas Snell, Joseph Toschlog, Thomas Caplan, Greg Roe, Steve Dang, Matthew Burns, Francisco Vigil, Miriam Safady]

Things got a little wild toward the end of the meal. First, Laetitia convinced Joseph to accidentally cut off Lord British’s rat-tail braid while serving a special King’s bread, then Lord British appeared to be poisoned after eating the King’s bread. Fortunately, Matthew located a coffin nearby, so we had a place to store the body, all of which got a double thumbs-up from the teenager in the group:


Fortunately, Lord British has an amazing ability to reincarnate no matter how many times he is killed, and managed to finish off the evening with a grand tour of Britannia Manor, and a final nightcap of 1955 Port:


The Lord of the Manor City Home

Next up in our Parade of Homes, we have a Lord of the Manor Home! Bob Cooksey and Michael Hutchison have crafted a glorious home befitting the regal status of our Lord of the Manors. This home is available only as a reward in the Lord of the Manor Pledge level. A sprawling four-story mansion, comprised of nine spacious rooms, and open-air decks on the first and fourth floors!


Here’s a view of the back:


Here is a side-by-side view of the Lord of the Manor City Home, the Lord Town Home, and the Shingle-Roof Village Home (that comes standard with a Village Lot Property):


Here is an overhead view of the Lord of the Manor City Home, the Lord Town Home, and the Shingle-Roof Village Home. You can also see the different sizes of the City, Town, and Village Property Lots:


And here are several interior views, exquisitely decorated by Bill Kirkman:









More Basements!

Town Stone Basement

Bill Kirkman has been busy cranking out more basements. This image shows his 4-story Town Stone Basement, sitting beneath the Druid Town Home:


As you can see from the following overhead view, the Town Stone Basement, including stairwells, is almost as big as the entire Town Lot:




And here are a few sample rooms with decorations:




Town Stone & Timber Split-Level Basement

In addition to the Town Stone Basement, Bill produced the Town Stone & Timber Split-Level Basement, available in the Add-On Store in two, three, four, and five story configurations. Here’s a view of the 5-story configuration, nestled beneath a Druid Town Home:


As you can see from this next image, the basement pretty much takes up the entire lot size:


And here are some sample decorated room views:







Unity Scene Jam #2 Winners

The challenge for Unity Scene Jam #2 was to help us create catacombs! There were tons of great submissions, and a number of scenes that were almost good enough for us to just add creatures and drop them in the game, which is truly amazing for a 48-hour jam. Tune in to next week’s Dev Hangout for a detailed analysis of the submissions.

This was the first time we used the new scoring system and it worked great! The top three scoring maps were 93, 90, and 88…all so very close! And the winners are:

  • Third Place and winner of a $50 pledge: Mechior Meijer
  • Second Place and winner of a $50 pledge: HasuKimchi
  • First Place and winner of a Knight’s pledge: Kevin Eslinger

Congrats to all who participated! Check out Chris Spears’ walk-thru video of the top three winners.

Scene Jam #3 has already started, so check out the details here.

Recruit-A-Friend Promotion Ends October 31, 2013

Just a reminder that the friend referral special promotion ends in just two short weeks! In case you forgot the details, the top recruiters can earn the following:

  • The Top 5 recruiters earn a Citizen Level Pledge value added to their pledge account ($550 additional pledge value!)
  • The #1 recruiter earns a Duke Level Pledge value added to their pledge account ($5300 additional pledge value!)

For more details on the Recruit-a-Friend promotion, checkout Update #36.


  1. Tassilo (Dev)Tassilo (Dev)

    Quick note from me, “Mustache Man” – it was important to us to get the store live and the long-promised t-shirts out. The store will take on the look of the website, soon, and feature more payment methods than just PayPal.
    Please let us know if you run into any problems with the store.

    Thanks! :)

  2. DoktorV

    The Crafting Sigil has a mistake on it – The phrase at 6:00, outer ring, reads “Attebtion to detail.” I imagine you meant “Attention to detail.”

    Furthermore, I notice the contraction runes, TH NG ST, are completely absent from all runic script in Shroud-related material. Is this a deliberate design decision?

      1. AzzuraAzzura

        Im going to have to relearn how to read the language then! I use to be a speed reader at it….amazed people – I was use to the NG and the TH runes.

        1. AzzuraAzzura

          The ring labels seem a bit inconsistent to me.

          Forage – Mining – Lumberjack – Field Dressing – Agriculture
          I would stick with the INGs – Foraging, Mining, Lumberjacking, Field Dressing, Farming.
          Or Try Subjects – Geology, Ecology, Forestry, Agriculture – Not sure to call hunting though :)

          Smelting – Milling – Textiles -Tanning – Butchery
          Again – why not stick to the INGs? – Smelting, Milling, Weaving, Tanning, Butchering?

          You don’t see it as well in runic letters. Maybe you were trying to be different from what other games use as their names? But why change some things, but leave others. It just doesn’t feel consistent.

          PS: Old Ultima Online was Blacksmithy skill.

          I know I am being nit picky – but I do copy editing, so these things stick out to me!

  3. Dame LoriDame Lori

    I was wondering that “Men of the Avatar” mentioned in the Standup was going to be! I was hoping for a developer swimsuit calendar. LOL :D

    Are you going to get in womens tshirts or should I just buy these now and hack ’em up?

  4. Darthan Haj MGT470Darthan Haj MGT470

    I’m sorry to point this out but attention to detail is spelled wrong on the crafting sigil. Check it out you put the letter B instead of an N, oops.
    Love you guys!

  5. LSteventonLSteventon

    Can we get a size chart for the T-shirts? I’m on the line between medium and large, where with some brands of unisex T-shirts the larges are obviously too big (can’t tuck them into pants and they look sloppy), and with others the mediums are uncomfortably tight in the bust area.

    Also, will there be lady-fit T-shirts at some point? If so, I’d also like a size chart for those, because they often wind up being “Juniors” sizes, instead of Women’s sizes.


  6. Athyrio

    Yes Number 1 issues with the store… T-Shirt sizes… As noted we want some lady sizes, but some of us HEARTY males want XXL and XXX-L added as well…

  7. KoldarKoldar

    Thanks for the update. Are these the same coins that will be shipped for Founder Collector’s tier?

  8. SmyrnoSmyrno

    I just noticed there was no fishing pole on the Crafting Sigil. Is Fishing going to be a more adventurous skill like it was in UO (sea serpents and Message in Bottle)?

    Any chance of getting 3 sigil shirt combo pack? :)

      1. SmyrnoSmyrno

        Neither is mining, butchery, gardening, etc. but you’ll see a pickaxe, cleaver, hoe in the Crafting Sigil.


    I am a little disappointed that now the founders coin is not that unique and any old person can buy a coin that looks just like it but it doesn’t say founders on it. At the very least maybe the Founders Coin should be cast Golden (like the US $1 coins) so then there is a more definitive difference between the Founder Coin and the now available at the store coin.

    1. Dame LoriDame Lori

      Sigh. They didn’t have to offer coins to the founders at all. Founders already pledged and they gain nothing by giving more items to founders. It is a bonus item they decided to add as a thank you. It is unique, but even if the store coin was exactly the same, you’re getting it for free. How any part of this can be disappointing?

    2. DarkStarrDarkStarr

      The Founder Coin has not actually been cast yet and we were already planning on a different color for that to better differentiate it just as you say!

  10. timedilation

    I’m thinking to myself– that can’t be the first time Lord British has had to play dead.

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