Avatar’s Update #289: Solace Bridge Rework, Obsidian Trials, Episode 2

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


The Reworking of Solace Bridge

As part of our Q3 efforts to improve the New User Experience we are separating the tutorials from the story spaces in the three starting areas (Solace Bridge, Highvale, and Blood River). We will be building a new focused tutorial space that the Oracle sends you to from the Confirmatory on the Isle of Storms that walks you through the game basics in a gated fashion (i.e. you cannot advance to the next room until you prove you can swing a sword). Once you complete all the tutorials you will return to the Isle of Storms and then resume your journey through the Lunar Rift to one of the three starting areas. Those areas are being polished to be more focused and tighter in their direction. We are also removing the tutorial elements and having them be almost entirely focused on story.  In the case of Solace Bridge this means rebuilding it which we are excited to show you progress on in this week’s update. We hope to have all this complete by the end of Q3 (Release 58).

[From a Dev+ Forum Post by Travis “Vas Corp Por” Koleski]

Here are some super early, in-progress shots of the new Solace Bridge space. We’re focusing a lot on the first three starter maps (Highvale, Blood River, and Solace Bridge (Not the outskirts)) in the next few upcoming releases.

(House will be on fire)

More to come soon! Thanks for following our progress!

The Making of The Obsidian Trials (cont.)

In Release 55 we started work on the Obsidian Trials with an early testing environment. That early version had no entrance, no timed sessions, and no win conditions. In Release 56 we have a first playable version with multiple features. There is an entrance on the Novia Overworld near the east entrance to Nightshade Pass. Play sessions run every 10 minutes with one minute of preparation time between matches. During the match a poisonous boundary that deals extraordinary amounts of damage rapidly reduces the amount of playable area. If you are caught in the boundary you will die quickly so you must stay ahead of it. There is a lobby area where players go when they die during a match, prepare for new matches, and replenish supplies from a merchant. The lobby is where you can also spend the currencies you earn from playing in the Obsidian Trials. Making any kill during a match will earn you Obsidian Skull Coins which can be spent on consumables like unique potions and a unique teleport scroll locked to the locations of Obsidian Trials. Winning a match that includes at least 5 players earns you Obsidian Medallions which can be spent on Victory Emotes and Titles (eventually we will be expanding this to also include unique patterns, gear, and components). We also modified the PVP scoreboard to display the timer for the match, show numbers of players in the match, display the winner, and to reset for each match.

[From a Dev+ Forum Post by Travis “Vas Corp Por” Koleski]

Some more progress.. 

Lobby updated (Note the large red fog is now the exit to Novia, where the central column will transport you to the disc). 

Toxic boundaries moving in.

R53 Livestream Sky Navy Themed Items (cont.)

We have finished the final Release 53 Livestream Sky Navy themed item: the Cylinder Automaton Pet! This cute little steam driven contraption will go live in Release 56 next Thursday July 26. Everyone who participated in the Release 53 Livestream will receive it in their bank!

“Where do you think you are going?”

“That way is much too rocky!”

Release 55 Livestream Part 2 Update

The second part of our Monthly Livestream for Release 55 was a huge success and we achieved even more of our Stretch Goal Rewards! We were able to reveal even more about our exciting plans for Episode 2 including the incredible player dungeon builder, go deep on our housing and decoration system, answer questions, and hand out tons of prizes! A heartfelt thank you from the entire Dev Team to all of you, our players, that continue to play and contribute to Shroud of the Avatar. This livestream was yet another example of your amazing support and contributions.

The amount raised by the time this update was sent out at 7:45 PM CDT on Friday July 20 was an amazing:

** $80,000**

  • ACHIEVED $10K: /Blue, Yellow, Red, Silver Aerial Combo Replenishing Box of Fireworks
  • ACHIEVED $25K: Silver Serpent Crackle Aerial Combo Replenishing Box of Fireworks
  • ACHIEVED $35K: Lord British Silver Serpent Wand (he loves magic!)
  • ACHIEVED $50K: Lord British Pavers
  • ACHIEVED $65K: Lord British Round Table
  • ACHIEVED $80K: Lord British Large Telescope
  • $90K: Lord British Sword and Halberd
  • $100K: Lord British Coronated Leather Helm and Bow

Note that funding AND eligibility for the stretch goals goes all the way to midnight so we will post the final number next week (and you can still participate if it’s not midnight when you read this).

As promised, Telethon Funding Stretch Goal Rewards will be rewarded to any backers that pledged a minimum of $5 from 12:00 PM CDT to Midnight July 20th or who are participating in our Rewards Program. These rewards should show up on your account page within the next couple of weeks and will begin showing up in the game over the next few releases starting as soon as Release 58.

Episode 2 Early Access & Player Owned Towns

We are excited to announce that players can now purchase Early Access to Episode 2 as a simple upgrade to Episode 1. By purchasing now players will get:

  • FULL GAME ACCESS of Episode 2 when it is released.
  • Exclusive Title: Visionary
  • Exclusive Emote (exact emote to be created at a future date)
  • Early access to Episode 2 content as it is released

Please note that some Kickstarter backers already have future episodes included in their pledges so this purchase is NOT required for them.

Player Owned Town owners can also get a head start on Episode 2 with a range of Reservation tokens that reserve everything from new POTs, transfers of existing POTs, and upgrade existing POTs. Note that all of these include Early Access to Episode 2 for a limited time!

  • Episode 2 Player Owned Town with Overland Access Reservation: This service voucher reserves a new POT with overland access in the new lands of Episode 2. Once the Episode 2 POT store opens you will be able to upgrade from this voucher to your desired POT size. There is a current limit of 50 total of these.
  • Episode 2 Player Owned Town Overland Transfer Reservation: This service voucher reserves your ability to transfer an existing POT that currently has overland access to the new lands of Episode 2. There is a current limit of 50 total of these. NOTE: This transfer will sever nested connections unless they also transfer (see below).
  • Episode 2 Player Owned Town Overland Upgrade Reservation: This service voucher reserves your ability to upgrade your existing POT that is currently nested inside another town to have overland access in the new lands of Episode 2. There is a current limit of 50 total of these. NOTE: This transfer will sever nested connections unless they also transfer (see below).
  • Episode 2 Player Owned Town Nested Town Transfer Reservation: This service voucher reserves your ability to transfer an existing nested POT along with a parent POT that transfers to the new lands of Episode 2.

Episode 2 Stretch-Goal Store: Barn Two-Story Village Home

We have launched the Stretch Goal store for Episode 2! These are stretch goals with rewards that can be used in the game now (or at least very soon)! When you purchase the item you will get it as an in-game reward immediately (or very soon if the item is still in progress), even if the stretch-goal is not met. These rewards are completely unique. They will not be sold in the add-on store, in-game nor as a bundle item. Once the stretch-goal is met we will begin work on the functionality for Episode 2 and all the items purchased would gain some function related to the goal when Episode 2 launches. For instance the foal from the Mounts stretch goal would grow into a horse that you could then ride. Each goal will have a progress bar underneath tracking the progress. General philosophy is that these items cost slightly more than equivalent items because they are linked to stretch goals.

We are starting with the Mounts Stretch-goal and will add further stretch-goals over the next several months including Flexible Lot Placement, Pack Animals, and Half-Elven Playable Race. NOTE: Many of these items are similar to the previous stretch-goal store items but these are different and unique.

MountsPlayers will be able to ride horses around the game (including horses tamed in the game)! These baby horses will grow up to be fully grown and mountable horses when this feature goes live in the game. NOTES: There will be some kind of summon mount emote / key. When mount appears you automatically vault into the saddle. Cannot fight while mounted. If you are hit / enter combat while on horseback you are knocked from your horse. Mounts cannot be ridden indoors or underground. The store started two weeks ago with the Ornate Hitching Post, as well as Roan, Appaloosa, and Dun FoalsLast week we transferred the Light Unicorn MaskDark Unicorn MaskHorse Statue, and Giant Horse Statue (thereby increasing the Mounts stretch goal by over $3000).

This week we have added the Barn Two-Story Village Home that for a limited time also includes Early Access to Episode 2!

Barn Two-Story Village Home:

Release 56 on QA Server

An early version of R56 is on the QA server along with an early version of the R56 post for review and feedback. R56 is full of new content most of which is now on the QA server for early testing. We could really use everyone’s help to test all of this amazing content before it goes live!

Testing on QA makes you eligible for Testing Incentive Rewards including gold crowns, the Ant Farm, Antennae, Bug Cloak and Paintings. 

Shooter Jennings “Shooter” Album Release Party!

You are invited to another historic album premier inside the realm of Shroud of the Avatar! Rolling Stone lists Shooter Jennings’ latest album: “Shooter”, which releases on August 10, as one of the most anticipated albums of 2018!

For his latest album, the follow-up to his adventurous tribute to Giorgio Moroder, Countach (For Giorgio), country-rock-electronica mad scientist Shooter Jennings looked to his outlaw lineage, cutting an album of stripped-down classic country in the vein of his dad Waylon and one of his heroes, Hank Williams Jr. He also returned to where it all began, re-teaming with Dave Cobb, who produced Jennings’ 2005 debut, Put the ‘O’ Back in Country – the first album the Grammy-winning Cobb ever produced too. Simply titled Shooter, the LP will be released sometime this year via Cobb’s Low Country Sound imprint on Elektra. Says Jennings, “It’s the most country album I’ve ever done.” J.H.

The event will kickoff through a series of quests that will appear in Release 56 which goes live on Thursday July 26. The quests will lead to the party at 7:00 PM CDT on July 31st inside Shroud of the Avatar, in the Player Owned Town of Ordinis Mortis. The first players to collect the clues and finish the quest will receive prizes from Shooter himself! Those prizes will include exclusive items with Shooter’s heraldry in the game (armor, brewing casks, etc), wax cylinders with songs from Shooter’s new album, and framed art of Shooter’s heraldry that they can decorate their home with. At the party you will get an advance listen of the new album, among other festivities!

Shooter has a long history with Shroud of the Avatar. It all started when he decided to have the World Premier of his album Countach in the game a couple of years ago! Shooter said about the event, “Having created a system where you can not only listen to streaming radio inside the game, but also having the ability to collect wax cylinders with audio stored on them which you can play on in-game phonographs, it seemed like a no-brainer to be able to share music inside Shroud of the Avatar. So I suggested we do a listening party in the game.” One news outlet dubbed it “…arguably the weirdest gaming event of all time.” He followed that up by donating wax cylinders of the album, album cover art, and other items to our Breast Cancer Make A Difference Store

He backed up this charitable work by donating items to and participating in a Think Pink Streamathon to raise funds for breast cancer which raised over $8000.

He even played our Launch Event this March at the Bob Bullock Museum! So join our longtime friend and collaborator for another night to remember on July 31 at 7 PM CDT and hear the new album “Shooter”!!


Shroud of the Avatar Rewards Program

We are excited to announce the launch of our Shroud of the Avatar Rewards Program! Earn the best rate on purchasing Gold Crowns, AND receive rare stretch-goal items from our monthly livestreams! This program automatically enrolls you in the monthly livestreams (counts as the $5 minimum purchase) along with other perks.

For the low price of $9 USD per month you will receive the following:

  • 9 Gold Crowns of the Obsidians every month
  • Automatic Participation in the Monthly Livestream Stretchgoals (counts as the $5 minimum purchase)
  • Exclusive Title every 3 months
  • Pick any Dye Pack every 6 months
  • Pick any three of the 7 Obsidian Potions every month, including:
    • Potion of Capacity: Increases carrying capacity
    • Potion of Conservation: Reduces reagent use chance
    • Potion of Expedience: Swift gathering on all gathering skills
    • Potion of Precision: Increases Meticulous Collection to all gathering skills
    • Potion of Preservation: Reduces armor and weapon damage
    • Potion of Reclamation: Increases Salvage and Repair to all production skills
    • Potion of Stamina: Decreases focus use from sprinting

Lord British Birthday Double XP Weekends

In celebration of Lord British’s birthday on July 4th, starting this weekend (June 22) and through the end of July, Avatars will earn double XP (Adventure & Production) when playing on the weekends!

Weekend Flash Sale: 

In Release 55 we added a Player Owned Town Row Lot Deed as a reward for completing the story and we reduced the taxes on Row Lots by 50%! To celebrate these events all Lot Deeds and Homes are on sale this weekend!

Follow the links to learn more about each item. Also, you’ll want to explore the game in detail for there are many more craftable items available!

Upcoming Events Calendar

July 26, 2018 – Release 56
July 31, 2018 – Release 56 Dance Party
July 31, 2018 – Shooter Jennings Album Release Party
Aug 3, 2018 – Release 56 Livestream
Aug 10 – 11, 2018 –Syndcon
Aug 21 – 25, 2018 – Gamescom
Aug 30, 2018 – Release 57
Aug 30 – Sept 3 –Dragon Con
Sept 7, 2018 – Release 57 Livestream
Sept 27, 2018 – Release 58
Oct 5, 2018 – Release 58 Livestream
Oct 11-13, 2018 – SOTACON Austin 2018
Oct 25, 2018 – Release 59
Nov 2, 2018 – Release 59 Livestream
Nov 15, 2018 – Release 60
Nov 30 or Dec 7, 2018 – Release 60 Livestream
Dec 13, 2018 – Release 61
Dec 21 or Jan 4, 2018 – Release 61 Livestream

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.

The Grand Duke Event

[From a Forum Post by “Cerus”]

Chapter 1
The Grand Duke & the Visitor

A Grand Duke, a noble man. Someone with high standards. He has always been a man of great wealth.
It is said that there were times when he walked through the streets of towns across New Britannia scattering gold and Obsidian Crowns to show off his wealth.
Some folks saw him as a generous man and loved him for that, while others envied him for his riches or even loathed him for his apparent arrogance.

Recently, a mysterious traveler visited him in his domain. The traveler apparently sought to do business with him. A trade of a special kind…

Chapter 2
The Deal

The Grand Duke made a deal and obtained some land deeds from the mysterious traveler. To his surprise, the traveler didn’t ask for a single coin.

“Thou canst hold these deeds for free,” he spoke. “But thou must do something for me in return…”

Some of the deeds were not to remain with the wealthy man. Instead, they were to be given to strongest and fiercest Avatars of New Britannia.
And it was now the Duke’s task to find them those worthy few.
And he accepted the task without further argument…


Welcome Quest Release 56

[From a Forum Post by Duke Gréagóir]

By Appointment to
His Majesty Lord British
Welcome Quest Makers​

You are invited to join the Welcome Quest in Release 56.

It will be held on Saturday, July 28, 2018 starting at 12 pm (noon) central time/New Britannian time and lasting an hour. It is added on the Avatar’s Circle community calendar for easy time zone conversion at http://avatarscircle.com/community-events/ Plus it is in your in-game Events book.

Greagoir Pendragon will be active 30 minutes before the event and during the event.

We are traveling to the town of Racuhbier Platz, nested in Central Brittany and Brittany Alleys.

Are you with us?


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.

We are proud to be the first player-ran quest in SotA! We do it for all of you. :)

More information is located at SotaWiki.

Welcome Torch changes – testing and answers due to burnout

With Release 38, all torches changed physically. The durability started to decrease when the torch is held onto. This change also affected the Welcome Torch you receive from the Welcome Quest.

With Release 41 you now can repair your own Welcome Torches with a carpentry repair kit and a carpentry table.

Win a Pair of SOTACON 2018 Tickets!

SOTACON Austin 2018 is giving away a pair of tickets and t-shirts to SOTACON Austin 2018!

Enter daily to win! To enter, get the Meretz App:

Or watch Lunch with Laz & Jack Daily for additional entries, as well a chance to win a weekly prize of a Custom SOTACON t-shirt!

Project to Support – Descent: Underground

Eric “Wingman” Peterson and team are bringing back six-degrees-of-freedom combat by blasting 90’s action game favorite, Descent, into the 21st Century with current-generation gaming technology. Descent: Underground is more than a graphics upgrade. Get ready for multiple types of customizable ships! Prepare for upgradable weapons and sensors with richly-detailed tech trees. Brace yourself for destructible voxel maps with new power-ups and mod tools to make your own maps and more!


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.


  1. Apas SkitaraApas Skitara

    Sound like cool things are coming our ways.
    Will it be possible to buy the “Episode 2 – Early Access” via Steam, for those of us who don’t have a credit card?

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