Update of the Avatar #87 – 2014.08.22: Play R9 Now!, Team Combat is Here, Player Hosted Events, Island of Choice, Streaming Radio, and More!

Greetings Fellow Avatars!

Here’s what we have for you in this week’s edition of Update of the Avatar:

  • Team Combat Is Here – Play R9 Now!
  • Release 9 In-game Community Events
  • PaxLair Player Town in Release 9
  • Release 9 Welcome Quest
  • Player Hosted PvP Tournaments
  • Developer Pledge Reward: Aether Vibration Amplifier (aka SotA Wireless Streaming Radio)
  • The Island of Choices
  • Alienware Sponsors $20 Pledge Upgrade Coupon
  • This Week In The News
  • Upcoming Events


What is it about Chaos that attracts the best PvPers?

Team Combat Is Here – Play R9 Now!

Release 9 successfully launched yesterday, August 21st, with thousands of backers downloading, patching, logging in, and checking out the new changes! Lots of new content to check out, including:

  • New Team vs Team PvP Combat Arena (look for blue Rift near the starting point in Braemar, guarded by the satyr, Dread Lord Stephen)
  • 50 New skills, including new Tactics school and a very “cool” Ice Elemental
  • Spell Reagents for tier 3 skills and above
  • 8 Combo skills (drag a glyph onto another one to create combo skill)
  • New adventuring scenes including the waterfront city of Ardoris and the ancient passages of Blackblade Pass
  • New Mini-maps to help you find your way
  • …and more!

Enter the PvP Team Arena through the blue Rift near the starting point in Braemar, guarded by the satyr, Dread Lord Stephen


Very cool dynamic map of Hidden Vale available on Avatar’s Circle site, designed by Fenyx4

We need all your help with testing the new patches, putting more stress on our multiplayer servers, and testing the new game content, so please join us in playing Release 9!

If you have not backed the game yet, you will need to register and login at www.shroudoftheavatar.com, select the “Pledge or Send Gift!” button in the right side-bar, and purchase a pledge at the $45 Adventurer level or above. For a limited time, you can get the Adventurer pledge for only $25 with the Alienware Pledge Upgrade Coupon (see details below).

Release 9 In-game Community Events

Our amazing community has another great lineup of in-game events planned for Release 9. If you missed out on these player events during the previous Releases, we highly recommend you check some of them out this weekend. Here is the latest schedule of player events from the Avatar’s Circle Community Events calendar (http://avatarscircle.com/community-events/):

PaxLair Player Town in Release 9

[A SotA Public Forum Post by Winfield]


We are building PaxLair (“Peace Place”) Player Town in Release 9 like we did in R8, R7, R6, and R5. We are planning to build in Valemark again.


  • Thursday, August 21
    • 6 PM CDT – PaxLair Gathering at entrance to Valemark
  • Friday, August 22
    • 6 PM CDT – PaxLair Gathering at entrance to Valemark
  • Saturday, August 23
    • 3 PM CDT – Welcome Quest – Starting at The Bear Tavern
    • 6 PM CDT – PaxLair Gathering at entrance to Valemark
  • Sunday, August 24
    • 4 AM CDT – PaxLair Gathering at entrance to Valemark
    • 2 PM CDT – PaxLair Play (matinee) at Grand Theater in Valemark – Curtain up at 2:30 PM
    • 4 PM CDT – Lore Council Meet and Greet at FireLotus Tavern in Owl’s Head
    • 6 PM CDT – PaxLair Town Meeting at Town Pub in Valemark
    • 6:45 PM CDT – PaxLair Play at Grand Theater in Valemark – Curtain up at 7:00 PM CDT

PaxLair is an OPEN community for people, guilds, establishments, and wanderers. PaxLair will be a metropolis sized Player Owned Town when SotA is released to the public. We are building PaxLair using our experiences with PaxLair in Old Britannia (Ultima Online) since 1998 (and still running). We are also using new ideas and meeting new people. These pre-Alpha releases help us get to know people, try out ideas, see what works and does not work, and have fun.

This thread is for our journal of activities/progress, questions and answers, and interaction with anyone and everyone. We want to meet our neighbors, hold some events, wander on adventures, and get to know each other in this new realm.

So please look for us. Most existing PaxLair citizens will have a last name of Pax or PaxLair, but in the final release, we will probably not have such last names.

Remember, we are building a town… not a guild. Many people and guilds can be in PaxLair.

See Also:


Location: We are building PaxLair in Valemark again. We hope many will join us!
Valemark lot map (drawn by Ashlynn)


Descriptions of Events on the Schedule:


PaxLair Gathering – A simple Meet and Greet event to see and learn more about PaxLair and to meet other people too.
  • Starts at the entrance to Valemark.
  • Includes a description of what PaxLair is as a player town and how and why it is being created. This is a good time to learn a bit, ask questions, and get to know people.
  • Takes you on a short tour through the town’s houses as currently built and decorated.
  • For repeat visitors, this is always a good time to relax, talk to the PaxLair people and friends, and maybe even learn a few more things.

PaxLair Town Meeting – Town Hall – An official PaxLair Town Meeting – everyone is invited to attend and participate.

  • Starts at the Town Pub in PaxLair (Valemark) – lot # TBD.
  • Lasts no more than 1 hour.
  • Seeks to get a lot of PaxLair Veterans to attend and meet new friends in New Britannia.
  • Discusses latest designs and development of PaxLair.

PaxLair Play!! “Where there is a Will…” (with added Act) – Everyone is welcome.

  • Starts at the Grand Stage in PaxLair (Valemark) – lot # TBD
  • Mingle prior to Curtain Up time.
  • Play lasts about 25 minutes.
  • This play is the famous one presented during Release 8, but will have an added Act at the end. So if you missed it in R8, you can see it in R9 with more!

Lore Council Meet and Greet at FireLotus Tavern in Owl’s Head – A casual discussion with the new Lore Council

  • Meet members of the Lore Council in person.
  • The Lore Council was recently created to help review player-submitted books/stories for incorporation into official Lore within New Britannia.
  • Come to FireLotus Tavern and meet some of the Council Members to hear more about the Council and ideas for how you as writers can help!

Welcome Quest in R9

Members of Celtic Holdfast, PaxLair, and Vengeance are teaming up for another Welcome Quest in Release 9!

[A forum post by Duke Gréagóir of Celtic Holdfast]

SotA_DukeGreagoir_CoatofArms1Prepare for the adventure. Prepare for the fun. Prepare for the Welcome Quest in R9!

This time around you choose your adventure. Will it be Knowledge? Will it be High Stakes Adventure? Your choice.

Saturday, August 23rd at 3:00pm CST meet at The Bear Tavern in Beran’s Reach and seek out the mysterious one to start your quest. Your choice will bring you to PaxLair (in Valemark), Vengeance (in The Brave Coast), or Dara Brae the Celtic Holdfast (in Northshire). Your choice , your quest, your adventure.

If you want to get a jump start earlier just seek out Winfield of PaxLair, Duke Violation of Vengeance, or Duke Greagoir of Dara Brae for a broken torch and bring that with you to The Bear Tavern on Saturday, August 23rd at 3:00pm CST to get your first reward sooner.

See you there!

Note: Location of The Bear Tavern in R9 – Go to the island of Port Mirren, which is accessible via one of the teleport boats docked in Kingsport. Find the back exit boat in Port Mirren, cross the bridge, go left, and it’s the first Duke’s Castle sitting on a city water lot on the left


Player Hosted PvP Tournaments

Once again, there are PvP tournaments being hosted by The Order of Vengeance and The Bear Tavern!


The Order of Vengeance PvP Tournaments

The Order of Vengeance Guild is hosting multiple tournaments that started on Thursday, August 21st and are continuing through the weekend. The tournaments are being held again on The Brave Coast island (which can be reached from one of the teleport boats in Kingsport). Here’s an excerpt from Violation Vengeance’s forum thread:

SotA-ARMS-150x150[1]I wanted to encourage all the PvPers to find us in R9 as we will be expanding! We will have a “Vengeance” location and a “Malus” location… the Malus location will not have any “Order of Vengeance Guards” (like the boat was in R8… safe spot for spectators).

This announcement is on the tail of one of our members being nice enough to pick up a second town that we will run a LOT lighter protection detail in and encourage a bit more… chaos.

Current tournament line up includes:

  1. Vengeance hosts a 1v1 tournament on Thursday at 8:30pm eastern. Lead by Violation.
    1. Winner: Espada
    2. Worthy Adversary: Ravicus Domdred
    3. Tournament Bracket: http://challonge.com/OoVr91
  2. Vengeance hosts a “Last Man Standing” tournament in the PvP Maze Arena on Friday at 8:30pm eastern. Lead by Violation.
    1. Winner: Hedbert CDD
  3. Vengeance hosts a 1v1 tournament on Saturday at 8:30pm eastern. Lead by Lukashka.
  4. Malus hosts a FFA/LMS tournament on Sunday at 8:30pm eastern. Lead by Sciamano.

Other activities we will be participating in with the community:

  1. Net/Riya maze will be in a PvP area (probably the same area we’re located in)! We’ll be guarding them as we can. LONG LIVE THE MAZE! (BTW, I do #BlameTheMaze for lag. YAY PRE-ALPHA TESTING!)
  2. Welcome quest that will involve Vengeance (likely to give out the Welcome Sword again)!

The PvP Maze Arena

If you’re looking for something a little different from the PvP Castle Arena in Braemar, or the open PvP areas scattered across New Britannia, then you really must check out the PvP Maze Arena that players constructed in Vengeance (at the very top of The Brave Coast Island):


Community members Riya and Net invited Burning Toad (dev team member Ken Pfile) and myself (dallas) to watch a PvP match from the Maze Arena VIP section:



The Bear Tavern Brawl

The Bear Tavern is hosting a major 2v2 PvP tournament on Saturday, August 23, at 12:00 pm CST, at the PvP Castle Arena. You can see the Tournament Bracket here, or go here to Signup. Check out their forum post for full details!

Developer Pledge Reward: Aether Vibration Amplifier (aka SOTA Streaming Radio!)

Several months ago, community member Duke Violation posted on the Avatar’s Circle forums about a request from Lord British for a crowdsourced in-game wireless device that plays streamed audio (part of the Developer Pledge rewards). Community member Joviex learned of this and approached fellow community member Bubonic about working on the project. Joviex programmed the features and Bubonic created the art, and the results are fantastic. Bubonic recently posted about the project in the SotA public forums. Here’s an excerpt:

ussoccer1-150x150[1]It is with great pleasure that @Joviex and I are able to present our mutual creation, the Aether Vibration Amplifier!

First, a little backstory.

A few weeks ago…Joviex approached me about a project request he found on a fansite: an ingame radio, which would stream shoutcast, connect to Avatar Radio, and other stuff, requested by Lord British himself. He had noticed that no one was currently working on this, so he suggested we give it a shot!

I’m particularly proud of what we have created here. Joviex has crafted some serious code magic: not only does the radio connect ingame as requested, but the main display screen even displays an animated waveform of the streamed audio! (I was very impressed, in case you can’t tell.)

Here’s the original request, copied and pasted from the Sota fan site:

1. It’s a placeable item that can be used to decorate a home.
2. It can connect to any shoutcast stream.
3. It can remember the last stream you connected to (config file recommended)
4. It can have presets to your favorite stations (config file recommended)
5. It can be reprogrammed to the users desire and remember their programming (config file recommended)
6. (optional) it can have a reset to “Avatars Radio” option so the radio works when placed and that button is pressed.
7. (optional) have the capacity to use the reset button to auto tune to multiple stations and sequentially do so… allowing future Avatarian Radios to be used for the autotune cycle.

Stream Technical Notes:SotA_StreamingRadio2

1. The radio remembers the last stream you connected to via a config file.
2. It supports custom preset stations, as well as coming with a few already connected, including Avatar Radio (which can be restored with the default button).
3. It doesn’t autoplay, it waits for input from the user.
4. It has an autotune feature.
5. It looks kind of awesome. [editors note: we agree!]

Some things Joviex added (obvious functionality):

1. Muting
2. Volume Control
3. Panning Control
4. Stop/Play/Pause states

The name itself, the Aether Vibration Amplifier, is from Lord British himself. There is also already a crafting recipe!

[Read the full post in the forums]


The Island of Choices

intro 5For far too long, you have been trapped on Earth. You know your destiny lies in a realm called New Britannia! As you search the net for clues of this place and how to get there, you discover some who claim they have found gateways, “Lunar Rifts” some have called them. A few claim that these “rifts have pulled their discoverers, at least their “astral projection”, to a floating island, lost in a strange void. A void where the sky is filled with a wrecked moon, that encircles the strange island. That strange and wondrous things await visitors here… but none have been able to venture beyond. This becomes your new obsession. Perhaps this is the gateway you seek!



Alienware Sponsors $20 Pledge Upgrade Coupon

Alienware’s powerful gaming rigs are a perfect match for Shroud of the Avatar! To show their support, Alienware is sponsoring $20 SotA Pledge Upgrade Coupons to members of their Alienware Arena community!

These coupons can be used to start a SotA pledge account (for new backers), or to add $20 to an existing pledge account. If, for example, you have a $90 Royal Artisan Pledge, you can use the Alienware coupon to bump you up to a $110 Virtual Collector Pledge.

Pretty sweet deal, right? So, hurry over to the Alienware Arena website and get your $20 Pledge Upgrade Coupon now!

[NOTE: Only one Alienware Pledge Upgrade Coupon can be used per account. Coupon does not apply to Add-On Store items]


This Week In the News

August 18 – MMORPG.com: Shroud of the Avatar Column: Release 9: More Combat, More Everything

Upcoming Events

We have a very full schedule next week at Dragoncon, including:

  • August 29
    • 10:00 AM: Videogames  Keynote: Technology Trends for Videogames (Starr Long)
    • 11:30 AM: World Design – Video Game vs Table Top Panel (Richard)
    • 1:00 PM: Games People Play Panel (Starr)
    • 7:00 PM: Benefits of Commercial Space – From Grade Schools to Asteroid Mining (Richard)
  • August 30
    • 11:30 AM: Crowdfunding Video Games Panel (Richard)
    • 11:30 AM: “Why did they do THAT?” Panel (Starr)
    • 1:00 PM: The Politics of Space (Richard)
    • 8:30 PM: Profitable Commercial Space Exploration is Upon Us (Richard)
  • August 31
    • 11:30 AM: Linear & Interactive Narrative with Tracy Hickman & Richard Garriott (Starr Long moderates)
    • 4:00 PM: VIP Design Roundtable as part of the basic rewards for the Duke pledge tier and above (Starr, Richard, Tracy)
  • September 1
    • 10:00 AM: Q&A with Richard Garriott
    • 1:00 PM: Shroud of the Avatar Presentation (Starr & Richard)

Other upcoming events include:

2014.08.27 – Monthly Video Hangout: R9 & R10 Discussion
2014.08.29 – SotA at PAX Prime Seattle
2014.08.29 – SotA at Dragoncon
2014.09.25 – Release 10 Access
2014.10.01 – Monthly Video Hangout: R10 & R11 Discussion
2014.10.23 – Release 11 Access
2014.10.24 – SotA at Captivate
2014.10.29 – Monthly Video Hangout: R11 & R12 Discussion
2014.11.14 – Duke & Lord of the Manor VIP Design Roundtable with Lord British and Portalarium Studio Tour
2014.11.15 – HoBLotH II: Legends of the Hearth
2014.11.20 – Release 12 Access
2014.11.26 – Monthly Video Hangout: R12 & R13 Discussion
2014.12.18 – Release 13 Access


  1. MulGirtab [BEAR]MulGirtab [BEAR]

    Great post Dallas! I hope to see everyone at these events and at the Bear Tavern Brawl!

  2. Blood0menBlood0men

    Nice update, can’t wait to place my Radio in my house so I can hear all the latest news and weather forcasts in our New world : D

  3. Blake BlackstoneBlake Blackstone

    Nice Job on the radio. This game is about to hit its tipping point and catch fire. Cant believe what everyone has wanted for so long is becoming a reality. Pretty amazing.

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