Avatar’s Update #250: SotAMap Now Under Official Development!

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

Game Development

News Announcements

Community Updates


SotAMap Now Under Official Development

[From a Forum Post by Starr “Darkstarr” Long]

Greetings Avatars,

Our original plan for maps in Shroud of the Avatar was individual hand drawn maps of various quality levels for each scene. These would be found, collected, quested after, etc. by the players and then could be used to navigate the world. We managed to implement a few of them but the scale of production involved in making them prevented us from staying abreast with the pace of the hundreds of scenes we were creating. They also failed to account for scenes with player housing that would dynamically change, sometimes dramatically.

Then along came the incredible tool, SotAMap, created by community member Jakub White and contributed to by other community members. Using a Google Maps type functionality, this amazing third party external application maps the entire world of Novia and allows POT owners to customize their town maps.

We liked SotAMap so much that we officially integrated it into the game in Release 40 back in March of this year. We quickly realized that this would be a fantastic solution to our problem of creating maps for every scene. After testing it out in the game for a couple of releases, we decided to approach Jakub about acquiring SotAMap so that we could make it a fully integrated and optimized feature of the game. We are very excited to announce that we have now come to a purchase agreement for SotAMap with Jakub White!

This means we can now proceed with a large list of changes that will improve the experience of using SotAMap. These will be broken up into two phases. We hope to have Phase 1 complete by the end of the year and Phase 2 by Launch.

Phase 1: Make what is there work better

  • Server Hosting: We plan to move SotAMap to a faster server with a better internet connection
  • House Data Automation: Right now house ownership data has to be entered by hand. We plan to automate this with the option to “opt out”
  • Map Creation: Get missing maps created (Outskirts, uncloned scenes from last few months, etc.)
  • Community: Restart community submissions of maps and customization of maps (POTs)

Phase 2: Feature additions

  • Game Play: Quest locations (NPCs, objects), Exit locations, Stores & Services locations, Difficulty, Scene Type
  • Social: Party Members, Friends, Guildmates
  • Linux & Offline Support
  • Optimization: Examine the data and code structure and execute optimizations

Let us know if you have any questions about us acquiring SotAMap! Stay tuned for more information about how you will eventually be able to contribute to the project. More updates to come soon!


R47 Postmortem Telethon – Nov. 3

Greetings Avatars,

The next Postmortem Telethon, for Release 47, is already fast approaching! New frosty cool stretch goal items are ready to be achieved to celebrate the upcoming release, which is due to go live this October 26. The following week after the release will be the telethon on November 3!

LIVESTREAM SCHEDULE (Central Time Zone)

Telethons are livestreamed on Twitch and include answers to your gameplay questions, world building tours, prize giveaways, sales on items, and more! See what we have planned below beginning at 3:00 PM CT on November 3:

  • 3:00 PM: Introductions
  • 3:30 PM: Postmortem Q&A
  • 4:30 PM: World Building Tour
  • 5:30 PM: Postmortem Q&A Continues
  • 7:00 PM: End of Telethon!
Schedule is subject to change. Check back here before the livestream begins!STRETCH GOALS (Frosty Themed!)

As a special bonus, we are offering funding rewards to any backer that pledges a minimum of $5 for twelve hours during the day of the telethon, from 12:00 PM CT on November 3 (Spending Store Credit to make $5 minimum purchase does not apply) to 11:59 PM CT.

NOTE: While the livestream ends at 7pm CT, everyone will have until 11:59 PM CT to spend $5 to get the stretch goals. We will announce the final total on the following day.

  • $10K: Snowflake Pattern Cloak
  • $25K: Big Silver Fur Hat
  • $35K: Winter Pattern Stained Glass Oil Table Lamp (3 Pack)
  • $50K: Ice Staff & Ice Bow
  • $65K: Ice Elemental Statue with icy effects
  • $80K: Ice Dragon Statue with icy effects

CHEER ON THE DEVS!

StarrDancingFor every $2,500 donated, all developers on camera have to either dance, sing, or drink a shot of alcohol.

Additionally, we will be spinning the Wheel of Fortune! The wheel will have 12 different categories of sales plus the Lord British and Darkstarr wildcards where they get to choose any category! Each time a category comes up it will go on sale at approx. 20% off for 1 hour.

WHEEL OF FORTUNE FLASH SALES:

WIN THESE GREAT PRIZES!

  • Frosty goodies!
  • Bank Upgrades
  • COTOs
  • Store Credit
  • RelicsbyRild.com merchandise
  • and a bunch of items we will announce on the livestream!

We will be giving prizes away on an hourly basis with many being given away multiple times. If you wish to win prizes during the event, be in Discord chat! We will be active on Twitch and YouTube chats as well, but they will not be our portal for prize giveaways.

Keep an eye on @ShroudofAvatar for updates before, during, and after the livestream. See you on Twitch at 3:00 PM CT on November 3!

[Read More…]


R46 Postmortem Missed Questions

We had almost 15 pages of questions left unanswered after the R46 Postmortem! With assistance from the team we were able to get to those questions and we posted them to the forums Thursday.

Here are the questions that we did not have time to get to during the R46 Postmortem. I tried my best to answer these (with help from the rest of the team) but some we just don’t have details yet to provide. I probably won’t have time to do any follow ups to these. The community did a great job assisting us this telethon to make sure we didn’t miss a single question.

Please note I deleted a bunch of duplicated questions and also deleted any questions that we answered with the Q4 post or with the release of R46.

Jirrc: Hey Chris, a great stat for the Postmortem would be: how many people had decay penalties Under 10K and how many had over 10K? I’m curious how many times people’s death decay couldn’t be covered off by the 10K xp bonus.
Chris: I don’t have exact numbers logged in such a way I can correlate data for this exact question. What I can confirm is that any player under level 70 would have their daily decay countered by the login bonus.

Jirrc: What is the largest amount of xp loss that that anyone has incurred for a single death?
Chris: Current record is just a hair over 1 million xps lost on a death. I know that sounds like a lot but the player that lost that much can make that back in 1 to 2 hours of playing.

Discipleofweb: Does training field dressing increase chance to get a carcass – wolf, bear, stag?
No just increases success chance.

Discipleofweb: In Twins Foothills, I have had an obsidian stag drop a stag carcass instead of obsidian carcass. I think there is an open bug report for that and obsidian wolves, ETA on a fix for these?
This is not a bug. They sometimes drop regular carcasses.

Paladin Michael: What about the Pick Locks skill? Can we expect an icon for it and … maybe more?
No ETA on making this skill function.

Amethyst25: I vaguely remember that roses would be used in dye recipes. Is that still the plan? Is there an ETA when that will take effect?
Yes that is still the plan. No ETA

Bioxide: With 1 mine that everyone feels they have to go to, any chance you can split up silver and gold in elysium mines? Silver and gold in the same mine = OverPowered.
We have a plan. Stay tuned

Bioxide: I know skill progression involves multiple trees, is there any concern it’s too easy to take lots of skills to 80 after only a month or two of play?
Chris: Not a concern but rather the intended design. We are a classless game but we still want players to be able to play multiple roles if they choose. So the intended design is that we make it easy for players to become pretty good at many things and then we limit their play options by having a finite of easily accessible options they can use in combat. In UO, they limit how many skills you can learn. In games like WOW, they limit skills through strictly defined classes. In SOTA, we let players learn as many skills as they want and then limit them through a finite number of things players can know at any given time. That is why we have a finite number of combat buttons and also why there is a significant cost to swapping bars in combat. This allows us to let players build what ever kind of build they choose but still confine their power.

[Read More…]


SotA Con Austin 2017 Recap

The first annual SotA Con Austin was an incredible success! We had multiple days of panels, lunches, dinners, dances, plays, a studio tour, prize giveaways, and much more! The SotA Con community team also announced to us that they met the goal to give money back to the project with over $900 going to Portalarium after all expenses for the event were paid!

Here are a few pictures and videos of the great time we had hanging out with the community:

More photos and videos to come soon! Visit the community forum post of additional photos from community members who attended the event.

Keep watch in the forums for details of the next SotA Con (2018) in the coming months!


Nightmares of New Britannia – Halloween Contest Extended!

Halloween contest update! We are extending the submission deadline to Oct 31 to add the Jack-o-lantern fix on Oct 26 (Release 47).

Spooky content abounds in New Britannia this Halloween season, some of old, some of new! Here’s your chance to show it off to the rest of the community in your own unique style!

This month is a two-part challenge of decorating a home or property in a spooky theme, or wearing a themed costume. You can submit an entry for both segments, though you are only eligible to win in one of them. As we get entries, we will announce on social media the latest entries in a Facebook gallery. You will also be able to view the entries as they are posted in the forums.

Submit your entries in a single post reply to this forum thread. The submission cutoff has been extended a week to Oct. 31!

[Read More…]


Cyber Monday Crown Bonus Continues

‘Tis our favorite time of year: the holiday season! It is that special time where you purchase gifts for the ones you love (including yourself) and it is that special time where we release all sorts of fun holiday goodies for Halloween, Fall, and Winter.

To celebrate we are rewarding all purchases of $15 or more with a bonus of Gold Crowns.

Here is the exact award chart (NOTE: Dollar amounts between tiers will be awarded the Gold Crown amount of the tier below it. E.g., Spending $100 will get you 10 Gold Crowns.):

  • $15      =       2 Gold Crown
  • $35      =       5 Gold Crowns
  • $70      =     10 Gold Crowns
  • $165    =     25 Gold Crowns
  • $325    =     50 Gold Crowns
  • $665    =   100 Gold Crowns
  • $1665  =   250 Gold Crowns
  • $3325  =   500 Gold Crowns
  • $5000  =   750 Gold Crowns
  • $6665  = 1000 Gold Crowns

The above will be awarded for all new purchases (including bundles, bundle upgrades, add-on items, player owned town upgrades, and Make a Difference items) between 10:30 AM September 28, 2017 and Midnight CST, November 27, 2017 (6:00 UTC, November 29, 2017). NOTE: This will not count for purchases made with store credit.

[NOTE: The crown bonus is calculated every day for all purchases within the previous 24 hours and then added to your account]

Original post here.


Weekend Flash Sale:  Trees, Bushes, Cacti

In honor of the Reaper that was added to the game in Release 46, we are putting trees, bushes, and cacti on sale this weekend! Get a look at the lineup below. Additional related items can also be found in the Add-On Store:

*Some items may be rounded to 20% sale price by a few fractions of a percent.


Upcoming Events Calendar

Oct 4 – 25, 2017 – Current Free Trial
Oct 26, 2017 – Release 47
Nov 1 – 15, 2017 – Next Free Trial
Nov 3, 2017 – R47 Postmortem Telethon
Nov 4, 2017 – Extra Life 24-Hour Event
Nov 16, 2017 – Release 48
Dec 14, 2017 – Release 49

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.


Shooter Jennings Meet ‘n Greet – Saturday, October 21 at 4-6pm CT

During the AERIE Fund’s Think Pink 24-hour Stream-a-Thon event this weekend, Shooter Jennings will be making a special guest appearance in-game! Visit the event forums for details of the stream-a-thon activities kicking off through this weekend.


Extra Life Schedule and Livestreamers Needed – Nov. 4

From the AERIE Fund:

This year we’re going to run an Extra Life team event to see who can raise the most support for the Children’s Miracle Hospital Network. If you haven’t heard about Extra Life, I recommend you visit their site to learn more about Game Day, which is on Nov. 4th, 2017.

And, while you’re there – sign up to join one of our SotA teams! For 24 hours we’ll be raising funds for the CMHN, while doing what we love to do: playing games! Oh, and it’s free to join.

The AERIE Fund and its board of directors has been on an amazing mission to help raise awareness and encourage support for many world-wide charities and charities that help to raise funds for causes around a variety of real life issues. The AERIE Fund board paid a visit to Portalarium just this past week during SotA Con! Here they are with some of our team:

Thanks AERIE Fund for all the great work you do in the community!


Mynwent Haunted House

This week’s spotlight takes us to the Player Owned Town of Mynwent and to the Mynwent Haunted House. Here is the town’s story as told by community manager Berek:

In my latest travels amidst the towns and peoples of New Britannia, chance would have it that my path lead to Mynwent. Surely, this was an opportune time for me to resupply before braving the dangers of Nightshade Pass, but as misfortune would have it, my attempt at respite inadvertently exposed me to an even greater danger. At first glance, Mynwent was an inviting town, but upon closer inspection my realizations horrified me. One might think me mad for saying this, but the town of Mynment has a dark history, and deep within its borders lies a house, so haunted, that I barely escaped alive to tell you this tale, oh Outlanders!

So take caution upon your travels to Mynwent, and heed my words! Make resupply in Etan Glen, perhaps Britanny, for the horrors you shall face in Mynwent are not worth the bobbles and trinkets you might procure, and likely, anything you might acquire from this forsaken town is cursed by the depraved spirits still lingering within.

And to further dissuade you, friends, I shall share with you a story. A story so tragic that perhaps it will overwhelm your curiosity and thankfully allow for good common sense to take hold. Read on only if ye dare, adventurers, for this wicked tale is one of great sorrow…

[Read More…]


Resources – Players Helping Players

SotA_NewPlayerWelcome_Forum

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.


Project to Support – BrightLocker Crowdfunding Campaign

urlogoBrightLocker is a revolutionary platform that enables gamers to connect with their favorite developers and gain exclusive access and interaction as they make upcoming games.

Gamers receive exclusive content, such as unique in game items, physical rewards and more whilst also enjoying revolutionary and unique studio interaction. This interaction comes in all varieties, from forum chats with developers to livestreams of games while they’re being made.


Backer Shipping Addresses

SotA_ShippingAddressIn preparation for shipping backers’ physical pledge rewards around the game’s launch period, on your Account Page, please 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 support@portalarium.com is unblocked from your e-mail account!



3 Comments



  1. Belladonna RoseBelladonna Rose

    Amazing news here. Hope that whoever is working on this continues the great work that Jacob did. Does this mean that alot of the scenes that had no content or very little will get done soon. Hope that the directional arrow gets fixed as well. Weird to watch myself walking backwards in some scenes.
    Honestly i dont care about resource markers at least not immediately but would be nice to see Prominent markers finally listed. Points of entrance, NPCs and such. Alot of scenes have notihng marked or there are things on the map but nothing saying what they are.
    ALot of work ahead but glad that the maps are now in the hands of someone who will be able to get going on the development.
    WTG

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