Greetings Fellow Avatars!
Here’s what we have for you in this week’s edition of Update of the Avatar:
- Play Release 38 Now!
- Release 38 Addendum
- The Making of K’rul
- Perennial Coast Improvements (Solania Polish)
- Wealthy Merchant Outfit
- Valentine’s 2017 Gift Boxes and Card
- R37 Lot Deed Raffle Winners
- R38 Offline Data Format Change – Character Preservation Notice
- Community Livestream – Exploring Canyon Siege
- Doug’s (IronMaiden) Chemo Relief Fund
- New Stuff: Pirate Ships, Dragon Pets, Shogun Bundles, and more…
- Upcoming Events
- Community Resources – Players Helping Players
- Recommended Projects to Back
Release 38 successfully launched yesterday, January 26, with thousands of backers downloading, patching, and logging in to check out the changes! There’s lots of new content to explore, including:
- New Blood Bay PVP scene
- New NPC Conversation Interface
- Path of Courage Polish
- Perennial Coast Polish
- Xenos Rebuild
- Brookside Rebuild
- Vauban Pass Rebuild
- Solania Polish
- Over 15 New Potions
- Rare Magical Artifacts
- Grandmaster Crafting and Enchanting expansions
- New Traps
- Canyon Siege Map
- Clockwork Dragons
- New Combat AI including Steath and Preferential Targeting
- R37 Lot Deed Raffle Winners
…and much more
Check out the Release 38 Instructions update for detailed information about all the new content.
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 38!
If you have not backed the game, you will need to register and login at www.shroudoftheavatar.com, select the “Get Early Access!” button in the right side-bar, and purchase one of our game access bundles. Game Early Access is also available on Steam Early Access.
Release 38 Addendum
- Fizzle changes: Several bugs had been reported with fizzle over the past few releases and we fixed all of them for this release. The result is that some players saw improvements in fizzle rates, but most saw their fizzle rates get worse. The worst case will be people wielding 2-handed weapons while wearing heavy armor and trying to cast Air, Death, or Fire magic. Those cases might have seen their fizzle rates go up by as much as 25%.
- Some bonuses were being applied before armor multipliers and others after. We consolidated the math so all gear bonuses and held items bonuses are applied before the armor multiplier for spells.
- We fixed the long lingering bug that made 2-handed weapons give a 15% bonus of dual wielding or using a shield. 2-handed weapons are already more powerful than 1-handed and this just didn’t feel like a fair advantage for them.
- While we were adjusting the logic, we moved open hand fizzle bonus from 15% to 10%. Wands still grant 15% bonus and staves now grant 30% bonus. We expect to add other handheld focus items in the future that will also give bonuses.
- Targeting Changes: A long standing issue with auto attacking was addressed; the “feature” that players affectionately called “Bowdar”. In previously releases, if you had auto attack enabled and there was any valid target, you attacked. Due to Novian bunnies being added to the endangered list, we decided to change how this works.
- With auto attack enabled, players will attack any valid target continuously but only if the target has agro’d on the player OR if the target has been manually selected through clicking or the select target key (defaults to ‘g’). This means to attack bunnies, hidden skeletons, or other players (stealthed or otherwise) with auto attack, you must now manually select them.
- In build 544 and earlier, the toggle between free and auto attack is on the game options menu.
- Starting in Build 545, all attack mode options will be removed from the menu and instead, the toggle auto attack key (defaults to ‘t’) will switch between free attack and auto attack.
- Elemental attack changes: Going forward, elemental attacks will do some melee damage in addition to their native elemental type. This was to relieve an exploit where players were using same type summoned Elementals to distract wild Elementals so they could then mine areas without any danger.
- Pickpocket: This skill can no longer be used during combat. This was being used, along with a set of other skills, in a series of exploits.
The Making of K’rul
Underneath Blood Bay, far from the prying eyes of the Oracle, top Kobold researchers work in the Kobold Research Underground Laboratories; aka K’rul. In this vast underground facility, Kobolds work to harness Obisidian shards, build ever larger and more dangerous automatons, and craft mysterious weapons. Like Blood Bay, K’rul is an Open PVP zone but it also has a lot of PVE opportunities with top tier Kobolds and automatons to battle with, as well as dangerous technological traps and puzzles to contend with.
Our goal is to have a first iteration of this dungeon live in the game for Release 39.
This is the main Kobold city area, utilizing a lot of @Scottie‘s Kobold buildings and deco
Perennial Coast Improvements (Solania Polish)
The small town of Solania is located in the Perennial Coast region in the southeast of Novia. Solania is located on a high point in the Celestial Swamp that lines the southern shore of Celestial Lake, so getting there can be quite dangerous. In Release 38, we went through the Perennial Coast and updated the flora and architecture to match the new Asian influence we first showed in Ardoris in Release 37. For Solania, we have updated all of the NPC buildings with new rooflines (blue tiles) and wall textures, put in a new perimeter wall, updated the foliage, and added in various other details. As with all polish and un-clone passes we make on maps, we do NOT change lot placements. We only make cosmetic changes of building styles, terrain, and foliage.
Right before R38 went live, Michael “Hutch” Hutchison created a new set of Shogun themed castle walls and put them in Solania. In R39, we plan on turning these into a player decoration kit.
Wealthy Merchant Outfit
As part of the recent work on the Perennial Coast, we decided to take our existing wealthy merchant outfit (the one with the potions hanging off his belt) and make that the Perennial Coast merchant (it already had a nice, vaguely Asian flair to it). That left us, however, without a wealthy merchant outfit for other in-game locations, so we tasked our character art team to come up with a replacement.
A sneak peek of the outfit design:
Valentine’s 2017 Gift Boxes and Card
Just in time for Valentine’s day, our very own Scott “Scottie” Jones has made another set of rare Valentine’s day collectibles.
Hello folks! As an expansion upon the idea of “themed” gift-boxes (and other such holiday-based gifts), I’d been tasked with creating some fun versions for Valentine’s Day which will be coming up soon! As with the earlier versions, I wanted to make sure they were just the right mixture of “vintage” with a tad bit of “modern” thrown into them, so I assembled some wrapping paper themes after scouring the net for inspiration that I could draw from… Pink and red hearts of course were an absolute must, with some beautiful floral patterns thrown in for good measure!
I was trying to figure out a good way to display these for this quick little update that would be fun, and to compete (at least a little) with the scene I threw together to show off the Yule gift boxes, and finally realized the best way to present Valentine’s Day gifts would be to lay them all out on a fluffy fur rug by a warm, romantic fire… All it lacks is a glass of wine and some seductive music! On the left you can see the large version displaying a hearts-within-hearts theme ,with heart-shaped fern-like filigree! On the right is the medium version with a vintage design I uncovered showing ornate lockets and the floating brass keys to your heart! And lastly the small version in the middle is festooned with little hearts made of pink rose clusters… Hearts and love for EVERYONE!!! ^_^
In addition, you all may remember the vintage-style Valentine Card I presented last year… So for this year’s offering, I went back to the same antique sources and was able to continue that theme for 2017! I really like that these can be laid out on flat surfaces in your home or lot as decorations, either as a surprise gift for others to find, or as a memento token of affection from a paramour displayed in your home for all to see! Like the 2016 Valentine Card version (seen alongside the new one below), this 2017 version will be a limited item available for a short time only!
Hopefully you’ll all enjoy using these to show your heart-felt appreciation for your friends and loved ones this season!
R37 Lot Deed Raffle Winners
The latest Lot Deed Raffle was drawn with 85 lot deeds awarded to lucky winners. There were two raffles, one for each lot type:
- Place Anywhere Deeds: 10 Total
- Row: 5
- Village: 3
- Town: 1
- City: 1
- Player Owned Town Deeds: 75 Total
- Row: 40
- Village: 20
- Town: 10
- City: 5
Raffle tickets grant the holder a chance to win deeds of any size (Row, Village, Town, or City). Raffles will be held monthly (total deed numbers will vary each month). Place-Anywhere Deed raffle tickets are more expensive but will have fewer deeds in each raffle than POT raffle tickets, which are more affordable and will have many more deeds in each raffle. This means your chances to win a POT deed are much greater.
This is the latest raffle where we limited winners to one deed per raffle type. Click here for a complete list of the winners for this release’s raffle. Winners can claim their deed(s) simply by logging into the game and claiming rewards at any bank. A reminder that you may have received multiple deeds to claim if you received tickets for a guild or other group.
If you wish to review all of your account rewards outside of the game, you can do so by going to the Account menu on the main website and then selecting the ‘Special Rewards’ tab in the page menu.
Click here for a list of the winners.
R38 Offline Data Format Change – Character Preservation Notice
For Release 38, the Offline Mode save game format is changing to support new and upcoming gameplay features.
Here’s what you need to do in order to preserve your Offline Mode save games and characters:
- Patch your game client to Release 38.
- Load each saved game and then re-save. This will convert your save file into the latest format.
If you do not convert your saved games during Release 38, your saved games (from releases prior to R38) may not load in releases after Release 38. In other words, we cannot guarantee the ability to load pre-R38 saves after R38.
Our sincere apologies if this change causes any disruption in your gameplay. We always make every attempt to avoid having to make these kinds of requirements of our players when we make changes like this. After very careful consideration, we’ve deemed this change, and the accompanying requirement, as necessary. Please note that this change will not affect the online game or characters in any way.
As a reminder, Release 38 starts on January 26 and runs through February 22.
Community of the Avatar Livestream – Exploring Canyon Siege
Chris Wolf (aka Seawolf) was eager to jump on the livestream and show off the progress he’s been making on Canyon Siege, North Drachvald Spur, and other scenes making their way into R38 and R39! We also gave way some Shogun items, and talked about highlights in R38. Have a look:
Doug’s (IronMaiden) Chemo Relief Fund
As many of you may be aware, one of our community members is in need of our help. Doug (IronMaiden) recently discovered he has stage 4 colon cancer. He has been a long-time backer and supporter of Shroud of the Avatar. He has 7 accounts (ranging from LOTM to Edelmann), multiple add-on store purchases, and several player bought items and lot deeds.
He is heavily invested (as you can imagine), but now needs to cash out to relieve the overwhelming medical bills required to continue his chemo treatments. Doug originally sought a single investor to buy all accounts, but due to the size and value of Doug’s investment, it has proven difficult.
After we have helped Doug (first priority), we will be hosting a private, commission-free auction for people who contribute $100 dollars or more to make available Doug’s highly valuable and rare holdings. This auction will be held on Shroud Marketplace (a third-party SoTA auction site).
All proceeds from the GoFundMe and the charity auction will go to IronMaiden up to $25K (per Doug’s request). Any additional funds will be put in a charity fund for other Avatars who are in critical need (also per Doug’s request). He would like to pay this effort forward.
Avatars who pledge $25 or more to the GoFundMe campaign will receive an exclusive, rare, cloak in-game. This cloak will be custom-colored (TBD), and carry the unique name: IronMaiden’s Chemo Relief Fund. The style will be based on the ever-popular community events cloak:
New Stuff: Pirate Ships, Dragon Pets, Shogun Bundles, and More…
Feb 23, 2017 – Release 39
Feb 25, 2017 – Ultima Dragons 25th Anniversary Event
Feb 28, 2017 – GDC Community Management Summit: Care and Feeding of Wild Fansites
Mar 9, 2017 – Spring Telethon of the Avatar 2017
Mar 17, 2017 – SXSW Gaming: Is Video Game Early Access Too Early?
Mar 30, 2017 – Release 40
Apr 27, 2017 – Release 41
May 25, 2017 – Release 42
June 29, 2017 – Release 43
Visit the official Community Calendar to see the great lineup of activities our amazing community has planned for this weekend! And be sure to check out this month’s Release Events thread in the SotA forums for additional events.
Event of the Week: R38 Welcome Quest – January 28, 12pm (Noon) CT
By Royal Warrant, we present to you the Welcome Quest! You are invited to join the Welcome Quest in Release 38. It will be held on Saturday, January 28, 2017 starting at 12pm (noon) central time/new britannian time and lasting an hour.
The Welcome Quest is a quest for all people to see many towns and establishments. It is created as a way for people to visit many player-ran locations. It involves each town and establishment to give the quest person some information and then instructions to go to the next location (a town or establishment) to do something. The path may be sequential from place to place or in parallel to multiple places at the same time. The goal is for towns and establishments to showcase their places, educate the people, and work with other player-ran towns/establishments.
You can teleport to: Duke Greagoir.
Community 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.
We want to give you advance notice that our friends over at inXile are prepping to launch a crowdfunding campaign for Wasteland 3, a party-based role-playing game with complex story reactivity and strategic combat! The game features a deep and engaging story utilizing a newly-revamped dialog tree system from the celebrated writers of Torment: Tides of Numenera!
By including vehicles, environmental dangers, and a revamped, more fluid action system, inXile is evolving on Wasteland 2’s deep tactical turn-based combat and unique encounter design. Play by yourself or with a friend in story-driven synchronous or asynchronous multiplayer. Choices open up (or close off) mission opportunities, areas to explore, story arcs, and lots of other content.
Backer Shipping Addresses
In preparation for shipping backers’ physical pledge rewards later this year, we have added Shipping Address fields to your Account Profile page. To enter your shipping address, log in to the SotA website, select “Account” in top right corner, then select “Edit Profile” located in top left corner, beneath your Avatar image.
A reminder to be sure that firstname.lastname@example.org is unblocked from your e-mail account!