Update of the Avatar #52 – 12/13/13: Play Release 1 Now, More Spoony, BotA Chapter 2, Sickle of Prosperity, Founder Armor, Darkstarr Cloak, and Holiday Goodies!

Greetings Fellow Avatars!

It’s been a super exciting week as backers are finally able to log into Release 1 of the game and explore character creation, home decorating, and NPC conversations! Read more about it in this week’s edition of Update of the Avatar, which includes:

  • Release 1 Open to Play until December 14!
  • Britannia Burns – Part 2, the Spoony Roast
  • Blade of the Avatar Novel: Chapter 2
  • Founder Starter Armor
  • The Darkstarr Cloak
  • Sickle of Prosperity
  • Holiday Specials

Come Play Release 1 Now!

Release One


Release 1 successfully launched yesterday, December 12th, with thousands of backers downloading, patching, logging in, and exploring the town of Owl’s Head! We need all our backer’s help with stress-testing the servers and testing the game systems, so please join us in playing Release 1.

In this version, you can create an avatar and equip them with different clothing, armor and weapons (scattered throughout town in chests). You can also select a house from the entire list of player houses, even the vast Lord of the Manor estate.There are chests of furniture and decorations all over Owl’s Head for you to pick up and outfit your newly established homes. You will also be able to try out the dialogue system by conversing with NPCs.

[Note: This early release is single player online only. Release 1 access will end on Saturday, December 14 at 10:00 PM Central Time]

Hurry and join us in playing Shroud of the Avatar while Release 1 access is open! (click here for more complete instructions on downloading and playing Release 1)

The Spoony Interview/Roast: Britannia Burns – Part 2!

This week we’re featuring the next installment of the Spoony interview/roast of Lord British! Hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

British hates the little children.


Blade of the Avatar Novel, Chapter 2

Chapter 2 of the serialized SotA novel, Blade of the Avatar (BotA), written by Tracy Hickman & Richard Garriott, is now available for download! If you are an Early Founder, or you purchased BotA in the Add-On Store, then you will find a download link for the current installment of the novel on your personal SotA account page (log into SotA website and click on “Account” in the top-right corner).  If you are a Kickstarter backer you’ll need to have your Kickstarter account linked to the SotA website (click here for instructions to link your Kickstarter account).

Here is a brief excerpt of Chapter 2 (illustration by Denis Loubet):

Chapter 2: Ruin

“A beautiful day for a walk, isn’t it?” Aren said in casual, if hushed, tones. He crouched slightly as he moved.

Syenna spared only a short, humorless laugh at the Captain’s joke. “If death’s specter is to your liking, then yes, this could qualify as a beautiful day.”

The two of them moved with measured steps down the remains of the city’s main thoroughfare. Behind them, one side of the main gate was all that remained standing. Every other part of the city wall that once supported it was now thrown down. The smoke from the smoldering remains of a row of buildings on their right drifted across their path, making it difficult to see much further in front of them. The abandoned shells of buildings looked silently down on them from either side of the road. At their feet, shattered stone and splintered wood were mixed with broken limbs. Stilled bodies occasionally stared back at them through sightless eyes. The main assault force had broken through here, and the extent of their brutality had been unchecked. The warriors had surged into the city like a tide, sweeping away anything in their path. Now the western part of the city was an abandoned landscape, its buildings empty of the living and its rubble-strewn streets and alleys still.

Disquietingly still, Aren thought as he picked his way down the wide avenue. Keep talking and you won’t have to think.

Download your copy of the latest installment of BotA to read the rest of this exciting chapter!

Here is this week’s Map reveal:


Founder Virtual Collector Starter Armor

The Founder Starter Armor is included as one of the basic rewards in the Founder Virtual Collector pledge tier (and above). The Founder Starter Armor, like the Founder Adventurer Starter Shield, the Founder Cloak, and other Founder items, displays the exclusive Founder symbol, an eclipse of the sun by the shattered moon. Although the original reward promised “1 starter armor”, we’ve increased it to 4 complete sets of Founder Starter Armor for both male and female: Cloth, Leather, Chain, and Plate!

Founder Cloth Armor


Founder Leather Armor


Founder Chain Armor


Founder Plate Armor


Darkstarr Cloak

In celebration of Starr Long joining the SotA Dev Team back in July, we memorialized his Darkstarr online persona with several new pledge rewards. One of those rewards at the Founder pledge tier, available to all backers that pledged prior to July 31, is the Darkstarr Cloak! A special cloak for your in-game avatar to wear, proudly displaying the unique Darkstarr symbol, identifying you as a backer of the game.


Sickle of Prosperity


Next in our “Prosperity” line of unique items is The Sickle of Prosperity!

This unique indestructible Sickle increases the quality and quantity of the foraged items (herbs, mushrooms, berries, etc.) as well as increasing the speed of foraging. While sickles with similar effects can be crafted and purchased in the game this particular sickle never needs repair.

Get Your Sickle of Prosperity Now and save 33%!

For a limited time we’re offering 33% off of the Sickle of Prosperity! Reserve yours (or send as a gift) at the Add-On Store!

Holiday Specials: Yule Tree, Menorah, & Replenishing Fireworks Box

Available now through January 6, 2014, we’ve added these special holiday items to the Add-On Store!

Yule Tree

This beautiful Yule Tree will create a festive mood in all who see it. Perfect for both in-door and out-door decorating! Reserve your Yule Tree in the Add-On Store now!



Make the festival of lights even more beautiful with this exquisite Menorah. Masterfully handcrafted, it’s a treasure to behold every holiday season. Reserve your Menorah in the Add-On Store now!


Replenishing Fireworks Box

Get ready to bring in the New Year with a bang with your own Replenishing Fireworks Box! A magical box of 50 fireworks that regenerates periodically. Reserve your Replenishing Fireworks Box in the Add-On Store now!


12 thoughts on “Update of the Avatar #52 – 12/13/13: Play Release 1 Now, More Spoony, BotA Chapter 2, Sickle of Prosperity, Founder Armor, Darkstarr Cloak, and Holiday Goodies!

  1. Arkticus Virtuous Ancestor WarWolf - MGT470Arkticus Virtuous Ancestor WarWolf - MGT470

    Was I the only one to have an immediate “Commissar” reaction to the Darkstarr cloak? “In the name of the God-Emperor…!” :D Anyway, cool stuff, really liking the different the armor sets :)

  2. KeldrinKeldrin

    I wish the timing for release 1 access had been better for me. was off tues wed, 12 hour shifts thur fri and sat, then off sun and mon.
    But I know, I work weird shifts.

  3. vjekvjek

    I wonder how good the “of prosperity” tools will be, exactly, compared to the most basic and most fantastic craftable tools of the same type, for Episode 1 Launch?
    It would be nice to know where on the “item power curve” these “of prosperity” items really are, to better judge their value.

  4. Sir NiccoliSir Niccoli

    I think the pants need some work. The guys, if you look at just the lower half, appear to be more female than male. It’s not that I want to see a huge bulge, but flat just looks wrong…

    Also the back of the female goes from one extreme to another on the cloth to leather. Uncomfortably form fitting to “is she wearing depends” loose.

  5. ge97aage97aa

    First of all, I hope they allot a larger time window to future releases. I only had time to try this one out for about a minute, but, c’est la vie.

    Second, the child-killing portion of the Spoony interview made me cringe due its historical inaccuracy. At the risk of being labelled a pedantic prick, I have a pathological need to set the record straight:

    1. Your memory is failing you, Richard. There was NO child-killing in Ultima 4. The dungeon room containing the child “monsters” ORIGINATED in Ultima 5.

    2. In light of point 1, Spoony’s recollection of worrying about valour-loss when fleeing from the children is perplexing. First of all, he never experienced this scenario in Ultima 4 because it didn’t exist. Second, there was no need to be concerned about this in Ultima 5 or onwards, since there was no penalty to fleeing from battle in those games. Finally, even if this situation HAD existed in Ultima 4, there would have been no need for concern about valour-loss because:

    a) there was never any penalty in fleeing from battle in a dungeon room (only from “normal” combat scenarios)
    b) even in “normal” combat scenarios, valour was only lost when fleeing from “evil” enemies (which did not include children). In fact, fleeing from “non-evil” enemies was rewarded with a BONUS to compassion and justice.

    All in all, an interesting case study in how false perceptions and memories combine to create an artificial reality in our minds – and those of others.

  6. Aegis159Aegis159

    Hmmm, the timing of some of these new Add-ons leaves a little to be desired, considering that we won’t have access to the Release until after the holidays at least… So then the question becomes whether these will be available later in the game or are these a “one time only” or “seasonal” thing?

    1. KeldrinKeldrin

      Excellent and valid question.
      They have stated that items in the add-on store, will only be available in game, if there is some kind of disclosure to that effect in the items listing. Like the note at the bottom of the village lot listing. Or even the note on the prosperity tools listing saying similar items that need to be repaired will be available in game.
      Right now, when you purchase items, it goes in your account under:
      Purchased Add-Ons and pledge customizations:

      This not only doesn’t make things clearer. It leaves more confusion. When I read it, what I am walking away with is that all purchases right now, are just pledge adjustments. So instead of having to up my pledge several hundred dollars, maybe I can grab what I’m really wanting for $50 or what ever. And not pay for stuff I don’t necessarily want. By that scenario, the add-on store could disappear entirely post release. The items available may change.
      The Viking Village house, might actually go back to no longer being on sale, like it was supposed to post black Friday weekend. (which, was the ONLY item to stop being on sale. And I think they may have regreted it’s drop in sales, after going to “retail”. However, I bought a LOT of stuff based on the idea, they where actually going to start taking stuff off sale.) They have stuff “on sale” that’s only available til Jan 6th. If a item is never available at retail pricing, guess what? The sale price is the normal price.

      Anyways, to finish the rant. Most of the items in the store will not be available in game. The bigger question is, will they be available later on, in a add-on store.

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