Avatar’s Update #264: Play Release 50 Now!

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

Play Release 50 Now!

Release 50 successfully launched yesterday, January 25, with thousands of backers downloading, patching, and logging in to check out the changes! There’s lots of new content to explore, including:

…and much more

Check out the Release 50 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 this Release!

If you have not backed the game yet, go to www.shroudoftheavatar.com and click the “Play Now” button. Game Early Access is also available on Steam Early Access.

Release 50 Player Instructions

Release 50 Known Issues

Here are what some players are saying about the release so far:

Holy….. freaking….. cow!!!! 38 Page Down key presses to get to the bottom. This is going to take a few days just to read. Amazing job team! Soooooo much goodness in this release!

– Vladamir Begemot

My word that is pretty incredible going. You must have worked around the clock, plus you really have hit many of the main issues. Congrats team.

– Steevodeevo

A cheer for the devs please. I am impressed. Most scenes load in under 15 seconds for me now! YAY!

– Earl Atogrim von Draken

First off I wanna point out that if you do read this, Thanks alot for your hard work this morning @Chris, I see you replying to everyone so fast and honestly feels good to get an Idea of why the change was done or if we are off with our ideas, so seriously, big love this morning!!!


…After many months and years I didn’t expect this huge improvement, finally our tank is able to… tank! Good job team, I’m having fun testing all combat changes.

 Rada Torment

I feel compelled to send a kudos. You and your team consistently amazes me with the high quality and significant volume of features that you pack into a single release under the constraints of a tight budget and a small staff. The underlying combat and crafting system changes are massive in addition to the client performance improvements and all the world-building, AND the new assets like the Watermill Home. And you managed to pull all that off while working toward a launch campaign. I’m almost speechless. Hats off to everyone… This is truly the best release ever and I can’t wait to see what R51 holds. Please pass my compliments to the team!

 Dereck Visaard

Release 50 Postmortem Telethon

Greetings Avatars,

The new year has fully set in and we’ve just completed details for the next big celebration – R50’s Postmortem Telethon – Mardi Gras style! We’re announcing this release’s telethon with new Stretch Goal Items ready to be achieved, Expiring items that become rares if you get them now, Prizes to give away, and informative Developer Deep Dives.

All of this is coming up fast on February 2 from 3-7pm CT!


Telethons are livestreamed on Twitch and include answers to your gameplay questions, world building tours, prize giveaways, sales on items, and more! Here is the schedule:

  • 3PM: Introductions and Postmortem Q&A
  • 3:45PM: Deep Dive 1: Combat
  • 4:30PM: World Building Tour: Quests & Puzzles!
  • 5:30PM: Deep Dive 2: Crafting & Economy
  • 6:15PM: Postmortem Q&A Continues
  • 7PM: Ending Announcements

Schedule is subject to change. Check back here before the livestream begins!


STRETCH GOALS (Mardi Gras / Carnival Theme!)

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, on February 2 from 12:00 PM to 11:59 PM CT (Spending Store Credit to make $5 minimum purchase does not apply) .

For this telethon we are having a Mardi Gras / Carnival theme since Mardi Gras is happening on February 13! Each item represents something related to either Mardi Gras in New Orleans (Flambeaux, Jester, Garlands) or Carnival in Rio (Feather Outfit, /samba). 

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: /samba
  • $25K: Mardi Gras Garlands
  • $35K: Flambeaux (equippable 2 handed open flame gas lamp)
  • $50K: Mardi Gras Mask Fountain
  • $65K: Feather Outfit including Feather Back and Head Piece (like Rio Carnival)
  • $80K: Mardi Gras Jester Outfit

*Please keep in mind that stretch goal rewards take time to develop and will most likely not be available in-game at Release 52 at the earliest.


StarrDancingFor every $2,500 donated, all devs on camera have to dance, sing, or perform some other act of amazement.

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.



  • In-game items!
  • Bank Upgrades
  • COTOs
  • 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.


We will be answering questions throughout the livestream, so submit them in the comments section of the original post or on Discord chat during the event.

Please do NOT post questions containing:

  • More than 3 questions in total
  • Bugs or other problems best posted in the bug forums
  • “When is this coming” or anything related to schedule (for those answers please refer to our quarterly updates or our post release plans)
  • Questions with more than a couple of sentences. Please keep them brief! We will likely understand the context of your interest, so just ask the question and we’ll be able to respond.

For bug reports and extra idea suggestions, please use the forums for this purpose.

A Final Thought: We see a LOT of repeat questions and requests. Please consider reading one of the  other missed question posts, watching one of the previous post mortems, reading one of the post mortem transcripts, and/or reading our Post Episode 1 plan post before posting a question. Your question might have already been answered.

Keep an eye on @ShroudofAvatar for updates before, during, and after the livestream. See you on Twitch at 3:00 PM CT on February 2!

Shroud of the Avatar Launch Event

Greetings Avatars,

In video games it is traditional to have a launch event. These events generally come in two flavors. They are either a party in which the development team has an opportunity to celebrate their achievement, or it is a press event meant to create enthusiasm with journalists and influencers. On rare occasions it is a mix of the two. On even rarer occasions these events are made open to the fans. Twenty years ago we did that very thing with the launch of Ultima Online and had a party with the fans at a nightclub called Paradox here in Austin, TX.

We are happy to say that we are going to do the very same thing with Shroud of the Avatar! The launch event includes our team, press, AND the game’s loyal backers, who are cordially invited as guests to the event. We feel very strongly that community is what this game is all about, so we want you to join us! The event is being made possible by our partner, Travian Games, who is co-sponsoring and will be in attendance.

The event is going to be one spectacular and historic celebration (literally). It will take place at the Bullock Texas History Museum in the Pong to Pokemon video game history exhibit that Richard Garriott and Starr Long helped design and contributed artifacts to show. Shooter Jennings will also be in attendance and playing a short concert.

Space is limited! In order to attend you must be a backer (game access purchase or higher) and in good standing with the community. We are only able to accommodate one person per registration. We can only accept the first 100 confirmed backers due to event space. We will inform the community when registration is closed.

Event Details

Where: The Bullock Texas State History Museum

When: March 14, 2018 6:30 – 10:30 PM


  • BBQ Buffet Dinner
  • Cash Bar (Admission comes with 2 drink tickets, attendees must be age 21 or older)
  • Shooter Jennings Concert
  • Mix & Mingle with the Developers


  • Backer (Game Access Purchase or Higher Required)
  • First Come, First Served (100 person limit)
  • Good Standing (Approval Required)
  • Travel & Accommodations NOT provided
  • Dress: Dressy Casual to Black Tie (No Shorts, T-shirts, Athletic Wear)
  • Consent to Photography: By attending the event you consent to photos and videos of you being taken and shared for promotional purposes.
  • Aged 21 or older

Fill out this form to submit your request to attend

We look forward to seeing you at the event! If you are unable to attend, fret not! There are going to be several in-game celebrations planned as well (details on those as soon as they are finalized).


Lord British & Darkstarr

SXSW Schedule Latest News

SXSW Gaming Expo announced their Discovery Stage schedule this week and our very own Richard “Lord British” Garriott is one of the featured speakers in a talk entitled It’s Here! Shroud of the Avatar and What’s Coming Next! He will be interviewed about Shroud’s development and what the future holds by our very own Sarah “Serafina” Dworken. Another Origin Systems, Inc. alumni, Warren Spector, is also featured talking about Underworld Ascendant (which we have long done cross promotions with).

This year, panel content makes its return to the SXSW Gaming Expo floor with the introduction of the Discovery Stage! Formerly known as the Geek Stage, the Discovery Stage will be central to the SXSW Gaming experience this year, hosting visionaries, creators, performers and players in fan-centered talks and workshops. Expect frank discussions about the journey of making games, first-look revelations on top upcoming titles and fun, creative live play, all at the heart of SXSW.

The Discovery Stage’s inaugural lineup features an initial nine sessions. Check them out below!

It’s Here! Shroud of the Avatar and What’s Coming Next: Richard Garriott (Portalarium) and Sarah Dworken (Portalarium)

After several years of successful development as the second highest crowdfunded game ever, Shroud of the Avatar is finally launching! Join Richard “Lord British” Garriott himself as the gaming legend and astronaut discusses the journey of Shroud of the Avatar as a pioneer of crowdfunded game development, what new surprises fans and players can expect with the much-anticipated launch, and where the journey goes from here for the spiritual successor to the renowned Ultima series.

Exploring Underworld Ascendant with PC Gamer: Warren Spector (Otherside Entertainment), Paul Neurath (Otherside Entertainment), and Evan Lahti (PC Gamer)

OtherSide Entertainment’s Paul Neurath and Warren Spector join PC Gamer to discuss the upcoming release of Underworld Ascendant. Known for their critically acclaimed work on Ultima Underworld, System Shock and Deus Ex, and their contributions to the founding of the ‘immersive sim’ genre of games, Paul and Warren will take the audience through a journey into the world of the new Stygian Abyss to showcase one of the most anticipated PC titles of 2018.


This is just part of an incredibly dense schedule that includes multiple talks, our launch event at the Bob Bullock Museum, and our booth at the SXSW Gaming Expo. Wristbands to attend the Gaming Expo are only $39 through March 9!

Mar 13, 2018 – SXSW Interactive: Overhead Transit: Cable, Hyperloop, PRT & Drones
Mar 14, 2018 –
Launch Event at Bob Bullock Museum
Mar 15, 2018 – SXSW Gaming: It’s Here! Shroud of the Avatar and What’s Coming Next
Mar 15 – 17, 2018 – SXSW Gaming Expo Booth
Mar 17, 2018 – SXSW Gaming: The Ever-Evolving Nature of Game Crowdfunding

R50 & R51: Skill Unlearning 100% Return

[From a forum post by Starr “Darkstarr” Long]

For R50 and R51, all skill unlearning will return 100% of the experience that was spent on them. We made this change because of the major changes to combat math, ransom, and movement speed that some players might feel invalidate skills they invested in.

As a reminder here are those changes from the R50 Instructions:

  • New Combat Math: We have made major changes to how combat math is calculated. We have done away with the old 0-100 system and replaced it with a weighted scale system. The vast majority of players will not notice any difference but high end players will likely notice that some of their tricks to completely avoid being hit will no longer work. Additionally, the attack roll is now split into multiple rolls which makes it possible to have a combination of things happen. For instance, it is now possible to parry a critical hit or get a glancing blow that you also block with your shield.
  • Ransom Changes: We have made several changes and improvements to how ransoming items works that are gained in PVP (either through combat or pickpocketing).
    • Notification: You now get an onscreen notification that you have lost an item through PVP or pickpocketing. There is an intentional 5 minute delay before a ransom icon appears after being pickpocketed. As in life, you don’t often notice theft until it’s too late.
    • Duration Increase: The time to pay the ransom has increased from 2 hours to 24 hours, to give players plenty of time to gain their items back.
    • Valuation: Crafted items and artifacts are now worth much more when ransomed.
    • Item Selection: The way items are randomly selected for ransom has changed so that we only consider each item type once, so many small stacks of an item type only count as a single chance during the selection process (i.e. those of you that have been using many different stacks of items as “defense” are out of luck).
  • Max Movement Speed Check: Effects that modify movement speed can only allow stack to a maximum of two. Additionally, their effects add together instead of multiplying each other as they did previously. This should fix the issue where stacking various buffs and artifacts with movement effects would produce insane movement rates.

Release 50 QA Testing Incentive Winners

Thank you to everyone who joined us during the latest round of QA Server testing for the launch of Release 50! We are incredibly thankful for the community’s contribution in helping our team test new content and make sure every Release launches as smoothly as possible.

The following winners have been randomly drawn and prizes delivered to their game accounts! Prize pool includes gold crowns, ant farm, antennae, bug cloak, and set of bug paintings.

  • Boradic Boneslasher – Antennae Hat
  • Kron Caledon – Antennae Hat
  • EMPstrike – Antennae Hat
  • Aynola – Antennae Hat
  • Widsith [MGT] – Ant Cloak
  • curt – Ant Cloak
  • discipleofweb – Ant Cloak
  • Jarikith – Ant Cloak
  • eli – Insect Painting Set
  • Damodar Demodian – Insect Painting Set
  • Rentier – Insect Painting Set
  • Mishikal – Insect Painting Set
  • Proteus Tempest – 5 Gold Crowns Testing Reward
  • Athanil – 5 Gold Crowns Testing Reward
  • Applerust – 5 Gold Crowns Testing Reward
  • Belladonna Rose – 5 Gold Crowns Testing Reward
  • Dereck Visaard – Ant Farm
  • Womby – Ant Farm
  • Ancev – Ant Farm
  • Justyn04 – Ant Farm/li>

Thank you EVERYONE, again, for contributing to another fantastic release!

Want to participate for a chance to win prizes in the next release? Here’s how!

Community Livestream – Wild Boars & Wolves

Wild Boars and Wolves strike! Matt Schmitz kicked off last week’s livestream by catching a few Wild Boars and Wolves in the wilderness of Novia. We searched out these creatures to introduce you to the newly introduced boars and the changes made to the existing wolves.

Have a look at what we came across in the video below!

For more livestreams and gameplay videos, be sure to subscribe to www.youtube.com/portalarium

Free Trial: Choose Any Path!

With Release 50Free Trial users can now choose any of the three paths (Truth, Love, or Courage) to start, but after selection are locked to that single path going forward. We changed this from locking them to a path that we had chosen (Courage) because we felt this misrepresented a core part of the brand of the game, which is “choice in all things” (ex. choosing your path, no classes, choose virtue/non-virtue, etc.).

Free Trial access allows you to play the entire game in any of the Online modes with a few key differences in game play. You will be able to explore hundreds of scenes, talk with thousands of players, adventure through the opening quests, and gain experience and skills as you get used to the world of New Britannia!

Here is the updated list of Visitor limits:

  • The term (Visitor) is appended to their character name
  • Max skill level set to 50
  • NEW! Limited to a single Story Path (Truth, Love or Courage)
  • Cannot purchase nor sell items via Player Vendors nor Public Vendors
  • No ownership of player property nor use of player property signs
  • Cannot move/interact with items on a player property (even if given permissions)
  • Cannot interact with public chests
  • Cannot give items to other players via Trade or Mail
  • Cannot flag as Open PVP
  • Cannot gain nor create ransom items when you kill or are killed in PVP (in Open PVP zones)
  • Character data may be deleted if not eventually upgraded to a paid account
  • Cannot play in Offline Mode

Join us in New Britannia for free today!

Job Opening: Executive Assistant

Thank you for your interest in Portalarium! We currently have an opening in Austin, Texas for a full-time, Executive Assistant position, as described below. If you’d like to join the Portalarium Tribe, the team building the ground-breaking Shroud of the Avatar game, please submit your resume/cover letter to: jobs@portalarium.com

Job Summary:

Assisting founder/CEO with company and personal administrative tasks including: managing calendars, making travel plans, meeting and event arrangements, payment and filing of invoices, managing mail, preparation of reports, and errands. General office administration tasks include coordinating general office activities and operations, maintain stocks of office supplies, manage phone calls and general office correspondence (e-mail, letters, packages etc.), support budgeting and bookkeeping procedures, create and update records and databases with personnel, financial and other data, assist colleagues whenever necessary.

Responsibilities and Duties:

  • Assist founder/CEO with company and personal administrative tasks including: managing calendars, making travel plans, meeting and event arrangements, payment and filing of invoices, managing mail, preparation of reports, and errands.Coordinating general office activities and operations
  • Assist executive staff and colleagues whenever needed
  • Maintain stocks of office supplies
  • Manage phone calls and general office correspondence (e-mail, letters, packages etc.)
  • Support budgeting and bookkeeping procedures
  • Create and update records and databases with personnel, financial and other data

Qualifications and Skills:

  • Minimum 2 years experience as an executive assistant to a C-level executive
  • Has a professional writing style that represents Portalarium and CEO well
  • Able to follow creative/technical/business conversations
  • Ability to craft business correspondence, as well as ~750 word articles when provided general ideas to develop
  • When given research materials or a publicly available topic to research, will be able to conduct search and summarize key points on a topic efficiently.
  • Able to efficiently translate assigned tasks (verbal or written) into prioritized checklists/schedules and can effectively manage those checklists/schedules.
  • Is able to self-organize and self-prioritize when necessary
  • Expert Outlook Calendar management, able to clearly detail pertinent event information
  • High attention to detail
  • High adaptability & takes feedback well
  • Self-driven with high work ethics, able to stay focused on work-related tasks, seeks out tasks during down time.
  • High level of self-reliance
  • Willingness to tackle all kinds of tasks for any and all admin needs
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Windows environment and Microsoft Office (Excel, PowerPoint, Word), Adobe Acrobat, Docusign, etc.
  • OPTIONAL: Basic accounting including use of Quickbooks
  • OPTIONAL: Familiarity with Google Docs, Google Sheets, Dropbox, Slack, and JIRA

This position starts as a full-time contract position with potential transition to full-time employee within 6-12 months. Once the transition to employee occurs, then the employee position includes company paid medical, dental, and vision through United Healthcare.

Job Types: Full-time, Contract

Salary: $15.00 to $22.50 /hour

Last Chance for Shroud Perks via BrightLocker Equity Crowdfunding

You only have a few hours as of this weekly update’s posting to participate in BrightLocker’s equity crowdfunding campaign and get exclusive Shroud content!urlogo

BrightLocker 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.

We are providing BrightLocker’s equity crowdfunding campaign on StartEngine with some special in-game Shroud of the Avatar items! Support BrightLocker and you can receive the following bundle, along with many of their other offered Perks:

  • Shroud of the Avatar Game Access
  • Golden Viking 1-Story Village Home
  • Tax Free Player Owned Town Village Lot Deed

Golden Viking 1-Story Village Home (this is NOT the same as the one for SeedInvest)

Tax Free Player Owned Town Village Lot Deed

Upcoming Events Calendar

Feb 2, 2018 – R50 Postmortem Telethon
Feb 22, 2018 – Release 51
Mar 13, 2018 – SXSW Interactive: Overhead Transit: Cable, Hyperloop, PRT & Drones
Mar 14, 2018 –
Launch Event at Bob Bullock Museum
Mar 15 – 17, 2018 – SXSW Gaming Expo Booth
Mar 15, 2018 – SXSW Gaming: It’s Here! Shroud of the Avatar and What’s Coming Next
Mar 17, 2018 – SXSW Gaming: The Ever-Evolving Nature of Game Crowdfunding
Mar 21 – 23, 2018 – GDC
Mar 27, 2018 – Release 52: Launch Candidate
April 26, 2018 – Release 53
May 31, 2018 – Release 54
June 28, 2018 – Release 55
July 26, 2018 – Release 56
Aug 21 – 25, 2018 – Gamescom
Aug 30, 2018 – Release 57

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.

Virtue Marathon 2018: Children’s Miracle Hospital Network

Avatars, on your marks!

Join Lord British and the crew from Portalarium, AERIE Fund, and Meretz as we tackle the 5K, Half Marathon and Full Marathon to raise funds and awareness for the Children’s Miracle Network Hospital Network at the Austin Marathon 2018.​

This event is open to all community members, friends and families to attend and/or support!

Austin Marathon Event Info:
When: Sunday, February 18th
Where: Downtown Austin, TX

Although the deadline to participate as a member of Team Avatars has passed, you can still show your support by making a tax-deductible donation (via this page) to the CMHN. Every bit helps and will push Team Avatars to cross that finish line!! Donate $25 or more to the CMHN and receive a Virtue Marathon 2018 in-game digital cloak! (pictured above). No need to attend the event in Austin to redeem. ​

See the full forum post for details!

Prism and Diamond Fields Present a Grandmaster Tutoring Event

From PRISM: “We invite all Grandmaster Crafters to come and share their knowledge to new and would be Grandmasters. We can confirm at least one Grandmaster in the following:

All Production and Refining GM’s will have at least one teacher available. (For the new refining we expect to have the efficiency for smelting, milling and textiles available possibly others)

If more grandmasters donate their time then even more can be mentored simultaneously.

You must bring your own materials to this event. There are merchants very near by the crafting pavilion in Diamond Fields selling fuels, but prices may increase due to turn out (other sub pots have merchants in case this happens).

A banker is also near buy so you can shuttle in your raw materials and squirrel them away ahead of time for the event.

You can teleport to Lace Delamorte, or zone into Port Phoenix and take the first boat on the left to Diamond Fields. Hope to see you there!”

Getting Started Videos: ‘Crafting Complete’ Series by Datendrache

With the recent video creation contest now over and over 200 videos submitted, we are going to select a video from this collection to present in this new ‘Getting Started Video Series’ feature!

This week we spotlight Datendrache’s ‘Crafting Complete’ video series! Have a look:

For more walkthrough videos, subscribe to www.youtube.com/portalarium to get the latest releases!

Did You Know: Shroud of the Avatar Features Dedicated Community Orators and Playwrights?

Avatars! This is Elgarion from @SotAHelp with a regular “Did You Know?” feature. Expect to see these posted regularly on community channels, and here in the weekly update!

Did you know @ShroudofAvatar features a dedicated player community of orators and playwrights? Echoes from the Caverns and New Britannia Theater Troupe perform AMAZING orations of fan fiction and engaging player created plays!

Recommended Projects to Back – MidBoss

Emma Massen created the ABC music framework that we now use in Shroud of the Avatar for player instruments. Thank you Emma! We noticed your project on Steam and wanted to give it a shout out.

Avatars, MidBoss is easy to pick up and play if you’re new to the genre of traditional roguelikes (turn-based strategic RPGs with permadeath), but still has the depth and complexity that veterans expect and enjoy. Give it a try!

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.

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!


  1. kazeookamikazeookami

    Q1. Do creatures grow more powerful when more players are present?
    Q2. Is there an expectation on when true mounts will become available?
    Q3. Are there any plans for areas guilds can fight over that actually matter and impact gameplay on a level more meaningful than a garbage leaderboard or point system?

    1. DarkStarrDarkStarr Post author

      Thank you for your support and your interested in the game. Please submit your questions to the telethon post, not this post or they will not get addressed.

  2. Sol StormlinSol Stormlin

    Q: Will we ever be able to free the fauns without killing them? Perhaps after killing nearby Satyrs, they can return to Perri instead of continuing to attack us?

    1. DarkStarrDarkStarr Post author

      Thank you for your support and your interested in the game. Please submit your questions to the telethon post, not this post or they will not get addressed.

Comments are closed.