The Portalarium staff seems really busy, and the FAQ isn't always updated immediately. I'm going to start an unofficial FAQ. If anyone has suggestions of new info to add from the Deep Dives, please let me know and I'll add it. Or if there are new questions to add to this, please let me know. GENERAL FAQ What is Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues? When will Shroud of the Avatar be available? What platforms will Shroud be available on? What are the system requirements for Shroud of the Avatar? How can I help? Is this an Ultima sequel? Will this be an MMO? Are offline characters and online characters separate? What is the story? Will there be moral dilemmas like previous titles by Richard Garriott? What can I do in the game? Is Crafting one of the non-combat skills? Will there be more than one episode? What does it cost to play? Can I talk to NPCs? How will travel work? Who is Lord British? Will I be able to kill Lord British in the game? How do I contact you? Are mounts in Episode 1? What does the distributed back-end mean? What are the controls in game? What kind of bugs should I report? How do I translate these runes I keep seeing? What does Dark Starr's head taste like? Why the decision to Crowdfund? BACKER FAQ What is required in order for me to log in and play the game? Where can I download the game? Do I have to purchase the game again on Steam if I want to play using Steam? How do I redeem my Steam Key? Why can’t I log into the the game? HELP! It’s during a test window, and I STILL can’t log in to the game!? Where can I find out what my pledge level is? According to my pledge, I should have all sorts of awesome in-game rewards. Why aren’t they in my inventory? I pledged during Kickstarter, but my pledge doesn’t show up on my Account Page. Help! I logged into the game and all my stuff is gone, including my character! Where can I find my digital copy of the “Blade of the Avatar” novel? What if I want to upgrade my pledge? I changed my mind. Can I get my money back? Can I have my pledge increased by referring someone else? How do I link my Kickstarter Account to shroudoftheavatar.com? I pledged on your website, not Kickstarter. Do I still have to link a Kickstarter account? Are pledge items bound to my account? What is the difference between a “Royal Founder”, a “Founder”, a “Benefactor”, and the Founder Pledge Tier? I am a Founder/Royal Founder, why do I have to pay Benefactor prices to upgrade? -- Did I lose my discount? -- Why don't Knight Marshal and Lord Marshal have discounted Founder Prices? I live outside of the United States, how does international shipping work for physical pledge rewards? The Kickstarter goal was $1,000,000. Why are you still asking for money? Are there any more stretch goals? How does the stretch goal store work? How do I change my password/avatar? HOUSING FAQ Can I own land? Do houses make the game pay to win? Can I get a house even if I can't afford a Citizen pledge? If my pledge includes a waterfront property do I get that in addition to my other house? When can I lock in my lot? How can I purchase a Lot Deed? What sizes do Lots come in? Is there an upkeep cost to Lots? What happens to my house/basement (and the contents) if my lot reverts? Can I sell my lot to another player? When can I choose my lot? Can I own a house? How can I purchase a house? How many houses come with Ancestor and above pledges? There are different kinds of houses? Can I own multiple houses? Can I own an entire town? Do houses automatically adjust to the size of lot they are placed on? Can I decorate my house? Can I sell my house to another player? Can other players come to my lot and/or house? Can other players interact with my lot and/or house if I grant them access? Are there group ownership options? Can I have an NPC vendor on my lot? Will there be temporary housing (ex: inns, apartments, etc.)? Will there be storage of items outside of player inventory (ex: banks)? Will Lot Deeds and Houses work differently for offline characters? Can I expand my lot or house? How do I purchase a basement? Are there different size basements? Are there different styles of basements? Can I decorate my basement? PLAYER OWNED TOWNS FAQ Will I be able to choose where the lots will be placed in my town? Can players help design their towns; even what kind of biome it has? Can town owners select their NPC buildings? Will I also be able to decide where they are placed? Do we get to create the lore for our town and name the NPC’s? Can we pick where our Town is located in Novia? Can a town be upgraded? If so, how will that work? Does a town generate income for the owner? Do we get a part of the tax on used lots or make money from our vendors? How will sieges effect player owned towns? Can I flag my player owned town as an Open PVP Zone? When can I start my design session with the team? How will you schedule the design sessions and how will deal with conflicts of location and name requests? How will the Player Owned Town owner control who can place a deed in their town? COMBAT & MAGIC FAQ Are there Character Classes and how will Advancement work? How does the Skills System work? How will combat work in Shroud of the Avatar? Will I need to aim in combat? Is the game trinity based (tank/heals/DPS)? Will I be able to build multiple decks? Can I switch decks during combat? Can I switch roles? Will there be PvP? Is PvP full loot? Will I ever be forced to PvP? Are the rewards for PvP? What happens when a character dies in game? Will there be control points? Combos sound cool, is it always just 2 skills or do they go deeper? Can skills be used out of combat? I worry the UI will draw my attention away from combat, what is the plan for that? Will there be DPS counters? When can I try it?!? CRAFTING FAQ How will crafting work? How will player crafted items relate to game generated items? Do you need Recipes to make items? How are the Crafting Skills laid out? What is Gathering? What is Refining? What is Production? GUILD FAQ How do I create or join a guild? Will guilds be able to share property? When will guilds be introduced to the game? GENERAL FAQ Spoiler What is Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues? Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues is a computer role playing game created by Lord British (aka Richard Garriott), creator of the genre-defining Ultima series of computer games, and Starr Long, director of Ultima Online. It combines the rich story of the single player Ultimas with the deep multiplayer experiences of Ultima Online. When will Shroud of the Avatar be available? Episode 1: Forsaken Virtues will be released when it is ready. Previously payment plans extended to September 2014 when they wanted to have the first beta in October 2014 and launch in December. Payment plans have been extended until June 2015 suggesting perhaps July as the new target date for beta and maybe late 2015. Those are best guesses and not firm dates. What platforms will Shroud be available on? Shroud will be launched on Windows, Mac OS, and Linux. You will be available to use a standalone client or access the game through Steam. What are the System Requirements for Shroud of the Avatar? Windows Minimum: OS: Windows 7 or newer Processor: Intel Core 2 DUO 2.4 GHz / AMD Athlon X2 2.7 GHz Memory: 4 GB RAM Graphics: DirectX10 Compatible ATI Radeon HD 3870 / NVIDIA 8800 GT / Intel HD 3000 Integrated Graphics DirectX: Version 10 Network: Broadband Internet connection (Not required for Offline Mode) Hard Drive: 6 GB available space Recommended: OS: Windows 7 64 bit or newer Processor: Quad Core Processor 2.4GHz or faster Memory: 8 GB RAM Graphics: DirectX10 Compatible AMD Radeon HD 6850 / NVIDIA GeForce GTX 550 Mac OS X Minimum: OS: 10.8.5 (Mountain Lion), 10.9 (Mavericks) Processor: 2.2 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo (Dual-Core) Memory: 4 GB RAM Graphics: ATI Radeon HD 3870 / NVidia Geforce 640M Network: Broadband Internet connection (Not required for Offline Mode) Hard Drive: 6 GB available space Recommended: Processor: 2.2 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo (Dual-Core) Memory: 8 GB RAM Graphics: ATI Radeon HD 5870 / NVidia Geforce GTX 775M SteamOS + Linux Minimum: OS: Ubuntu 10.10 or newer officially but most linux flavors supported Processor: Intel Core 2 DUO 2.4 GHz / AMD Athlon X2 2.7 GHz Memory: 4 GB RAM Graphics: ATI Radeon HD 3870 / NVIDIA 8800 GT / Intel HD 3000 Integrated Graphics Network: Broadband Internet connection (Not required for Offline Mode) Hard Drive: 6 GB available space Recommended: Processor: Quad Core Processor 2.4GHz or faster Memory: 8 GB RAM Graphics: AMD Radeon HD 6850 / NVIDIA GeForce GTX 550 How can I help? Shroud is both a crowd-funded and crowd-sourced game. You make a direct monetary contribution by pledging. You can also help by submitting Unity compatible content (art, sfx, music, world building, in game books, etc) in this sub-forum. Once submitted content is approved the submitter can choose to be compensated in real or virtual currency. Community created assets (such as music, art, dialogue and items) have already made their way into the game. The tentative plan is to create a tool to ease submitting these assets for approval. The College of Arms also provides a means for the community to contribute. Qualifying pledge levels allow backers to have a custom crest appear in game. The College of Arms has been creating and approving these crests. You can always volunteer there. Finally, you can become a registered user on our Community Forums and join discussions about the direction of the game. One of the best ways you can help us is to expand our player base. Please spread the word to family and friends to come join us in Shroud of the Avatar. Is this an Ultima sequel? This is NOT an “Ultima“, as that is a trademark owned by Electronic Arts. We are creating a new world for Shroud of the Avatar, which will adhere to the design principles that all of Richard’s games adhered to. You might call SotA a spiritual successor to Ultima and Ultima online, but it is not a direct sequel in any way. Please read the series of Developer Blogs, “What is a Lord British Ultimate RPG”, for more details. Will this be an MMO? Shroud of the Avatar is a new form of multiplayer online role playing game we are calling a Selective Multiplayer Game. This will allow players to choose how they want to play. Play options will include solo offline, solo online, friends only online, or open multiplayer online. For players who play in open multiplayer, Shroud of the Avatar will feel very much like a traditional MMO. The persistent open multiplayer mode itself could technically be called an MMO, but SotA will be differentiated not only by its other game modes, but also by breaking away from modern MMO conventions. SotA isn't faction-based, there are no character classes, and the focus isn't entirely on "Elder Game". The online portion will more closely resemble Ultima Online than it will World of Warcraft. That does mean it will be a clone of UO. Are offline characters and online characters separate? For Episode 1 offline characters are completely separate from online characters. Offline characters can never migrate to the online space. Offline and online characters on the same account cannot share any content. What is the story? “Few know the tales of the dark times, much less what happened before them. Since the great Cataclysm 400 years ago the world has slowly recovered but much was lost. Now the Dire Prophecies are beginning to come true as the world is flooded with Otherworlders.” – Arabella Shroud of the Avatar is infused with rich storylines deeply integrated into gameplay, developed by best selling author Tracy Hickman and RPG legend Richard Garriott. The main quest line will provide greater than 40 hours of focused, story driven content. While most of the story has been a closely guarded secret, Tracy Hickman has finished his serialized prequel novel, "Blade of the Avatar". If you are a Founder with an Adventurer pledge or higher, or you purchased the digital novel through the Add On Store, you can access it on your Account Page. FireAngel has a thread with all the story sneak peeks in one place here. The really simple overview of this setting is that 400 years ago there was a cataclysm that nearly wiped all human life off the planet when two moons collided into one, called The Fall. Before The Fall there were Avatars on the planet. Some felt they were saviors. Some blame them for causing The Fall. Now we have one moon surrounded by the debris of the second, called Daedalus. And shattered pieces of the broken moon also fell to New Britannia in sites called Shardfalls, where the pieces are spreading corruption. There is a prophecy that exactly 400 years after The Fall, someone from another world will come to New Britannia and cleanse the planet. Is that a good thing or not? The world is also filled with fomorians like Elves, Satyrs, Kobolds and Fawns. The first of their kind were humans transformed through magic into other creatures to be slaves of an old cult/empire called the Obsidian Cabal that tried to take over all of Novia (the continent of New Britannia that Episode 1 takes place in). The Obsidians seem to be gone, or are they? There are 3 Titans, each a mysterious person of legend who has somehow lived centuries in New Britannia. They each espouse a particular virtue (Love, Truth and Courage). New Britannia also has someone named The Oracle who is constantly watching and overseeing everyone throne clockwork creatures called Watchers. But the main plot of Episode 1 is fairly secret. Richard has said in the past that Episode 1 is about an unseen threat that is growing and discovering them. Will there be moral dilemmas like previous titles by Richard Garriott? Players will adventure in an interactive world where their choices have consequences, ethical paradoxes give them pause, and they play a vital part in weaving their own story into the immersive world and lore surrounding them. What can I do in the game? Players can progress through a rich guided story as well as play in a sandbox-like environment. Players can specialize in a wide range of combat and non-combat skills provided by a robust, classless skill system and utilize full-featured crafting and housing mechanics. This link can also help you first enter one of the pre-alpha releases. Mad Hermit's Getting Started Guide. Is Crafting one of the non-combat skills? Players will be able to make almost anything in the game including furniture, consumables, and equipment. The results of all crafting elements have value as consumables and components in the combat system, as well as maintenance and upgrade elements for housing and cities. Crafting will have it's own tier of skills that you level in separately from combat and PvP skills. There are three rings of Crafting: Gathering, Refining and Production. Each ring contains five different skills. Blacksmithing Smelting Mining Carpentry Milling Forestry Tailoring Textiles Tanning Agriculture Cooking Butchery Field Dressing Alchemy Forage There is a mega-post on the forums that explains the crafting skills in detail. Will there be more than one episode? Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues is the first of a 5 game series of full-length games (each using the same game system), referred to as Episodes 1 through 5. Estimated availability of Episode 1, Forsaken Virtues, is late 2015, with Episodes 2 through 5 estimated for subsequent yearly releases. During the crowd-funding phase of Episode 1, you can get access to all 5 Episodes with an Explorer All Digital ($135) tier or higher. What does it cost to play? Shroud of the Avatar is a “buy-to-play” game that, once purchased, does not require a subscription to play. While there is an add-on store to help generate revenue, purchases in the add-on store are vanity and convenience items. SotA will never be a pay-to-win game, nor is it a free-to-play game. Can I talk to NPCs? Players will have conversations with NPCs by typing text instead of choosing predefined options. You can also click on linked keywords so you don't have to type everything out. The interface and design of this system isn't final. Most every NPC in the game should respond to keywords such as: NAME, JOB, HEALTH, HELP, RUMORS, NEWS, etc. How will travel work? Shroud will have what is known as a two scale map. While players travel between points of interest (towns, dungeons, etc.) the camera zooms out to a world map view. Mounts and boats that you can freely navigate are stretch goals in Episode 1. If they are not met, those travel methods will likely be included in future episodes, but they are not currently in scope for Episode 1. Who is Lord British? Lord British is the pseudonym of Richard Garriott, the award winning designer and creator of the Ultima franchise which was first introduced in 1980 with Ultima 1. He went on to produce another eight single player Ultimas and the genre defining Ultima Online in 1997. In 2006 he was elected into The Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences Hall of Fame and given a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Game Developers Choice Awards. Will I be able to kill Lord British in the game? There is a long standing tradition of players attempting to do this in Richard’s games and who are we to break tradition? How do I contact you? Please send email to email@example.com. Are mounts in Episode 1? Mounts were not initially planned for Episode 1. Anyone who backs at the Adventurer tier or higher gets coconut shells they can smack together to simulate a horse like the famous Monty Python bit. However not there is a stretch goal to add mounts to the game via the newly proposed Stretch Goal store. Horse Mounts (non combat): Goal = $250,000 Description: Players can ride horses around the game! Rules: 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 Mounts Stretch Goal Full Package: $100 (package discount) White Foal (baby horse) non-combat pet: $20 Black Foal (baby horse) non-combat pet: $20 Buckskin Foal (baby horse) non-combat pet: $20 Riding Outfit Female: $20 Riding Outfit Male: $20 Saddle House Decoration: $10 What does the distributed back-end mean? In a traditional MMO, each instance is hosted on the servers. With SotA, some of the processing for individual instances will happen on the client end, where one of the individuals in the instance hosts it for other players in the instance in a peer to peer model. This happens auto-magically in the background and is transparent to the player. What are the controls in game? You can find current in game controls in the latest release instructions. What kind of bugs should I report? Known issues for the current release are posted here. If there is anything you don't feel is working correctly that isn't on the Known Issues list, then please submit a bug report in the proper sub-forum. How do I translate these runes I keep seeing? SOTA Museum has both the cypher for the runes, and flash cards to help learn them. These runes are slightly different than the ones used in Ultima games. There are no runes that represent dual-characters so they should be easier to learn. Why the decision to Crowd-fund? Crowd-funding allows us to work directly for, and with, the player, versus working for a large publishing corporation. What does Dark Starr's head taste like? You would have to ask Rustic Dragon. BACKER FAQ Spoiler What is required in order for me to log in and play the game? In order to log in and play Shroud of the Avatar, a player must have an Adventurer level pledge or higher. For those who backed us during the Kickstarter campaign, all First and Second Responder pledges also qualify as an Adventurer Pledge. Participation in our monthly Early Access testing is also open to all backers with an Adventurer pledge or higher. Steam Early Access Purchase is considered an Adventurer pledge as well. Where can I download the game? You can download the client now, but the servers are only live to play during select testing periods for each release. Note, from here on out, servers should be live *most* of the time. Only the weekend release once a month is guaranteed, but they will try to leave the servers up between releases as well now. Download and run the SotAInstaller.exe here: PC: https://d2sx9mrt4zumaq.cloudfront.net/Installers/SotAInstaller.exe NOTE: If you still have an install then all you need to do is patch, no need to re-install Mac: https://d2sx9mrt4zumaq.cloudfront.net/Installers/Shroud+of+the+Avatar+-+Installer.pkg Linux: https://d2sx9mrt4zumaq.cloudfront.net/Launchers/latestPatcherLinux.tar.gz Do I have to purchase the game again on Steam if I want to play using Steam? Absolutely not! All existing backers at the Adventurer level and above will be able to use their existing pledge to register on Steam for free. If you have a qualifying pledge, the link to claim your Steam access key can be found at the bottom of your SotA Account Page. How do I redeem my Steam Key? Log into SotA and go to your Account Page. Scroll to the bottom of the page and you’ll see a box on the right side labeled “Play SotA through Steam”. Click on the link that reads “…click here to redeem an access key by signing in through Steam!“ You’ll be instructed to Sign in through Steam NOTE: Make sure you are signing into the correct Steam account! Steam does not support unlinking if you make a mistake here! Click the “Allow” button to redeem and activate the SotA key on your Steam account You’ll see a SotA “Congratulations” message confirming successful Steam activation. Click the “account page” link to return you to your SotA Account Page. Scroll to the bottom of your Account Page to confirm that the “Play SotA through Steam” box now states that your Steam access key has been redeemed and displays the Steam Account it is associated with. You will need to launch your Steam desktop client to see Shroud of the Avatar in your Steam Library Select Shroud of the Avatar in your Steam Library and click on “INSTALL” Follow the Steam installation instructions and once the download is complete you will be able to launch SotA from Steam. Why can’t I log into the the game? It is possible that the current testing window is currently closed. During Early Pre-Alpha (Release 1-11), our test windows are very short, only lasting a few days. If you are trying to log in outside of the testing dates, you will receive the error message: The server is only allowing internal development at this time. Note, this behavior has changed slightly moving forward from R12 on. The servers are not guaranteed to be up at all times, but Portalarium will attempt to leave servers up between releases as long as they can. HELP! It’s during a test window, and I STILL can’t log in to the game!? You must have a qualifying pledge to participate in the Early Testing windows. That means you must have a LINKED Kickstarter pledge of First Responder or higher or have made a pledge on the Shroud of the Avatar website at Adventurer or higher. Where can I find out what my pledge level is? Each backer has a profile that can be found on their Account Page. This page includes information about your pledge level, any Add-ons you’ve purchased, and what gifts you’ve sent or received. You can reach your account page using the link in the upper right hand corner of the Shroud of the Avatar homepage. This handy spreadsheet helps clarify what you get for each pledge level. According to my pledge, I should have all sorts of awesome in-game rewards. Why aren’t they in my inventory? Starting with R14, some of the pledge rewards will be given in game and can be found in game at a bank. Not all of the pledge rewards are developed yet, and these pledge rewards are still temporary as there will be at least one more wipe before the final release of the game. When the final wipe occurs, those with lot deeds in their pledge rewards will have the opportunity to claim lots in game based on a tiered priority. I pledged during Kickstarter, but my pledge doesn’t show up on my Account Page. All Kickstarter pledges must be linked to your profile in order to show up on your Account Page and qualify you for participation in the Early Alpha and Beta tests. Linking instructions can be found here. Help! I logged into the game and all my stuff is gone, including my character! At this time of early development, periodic data wipes are sometimes necessary in order for us to add new features and improve old ones. Although this can be frustrating, it is required at this stage of development and we strive to only do it when absolutely necessary. Starting with R14, the plan is to wipe less frequently (only when needed), that way we can test a growing economy in game among other systems. Some future releases may still necessitate wipes and there will be a final wipe before release. Where can I find my digital copy of the “Blade of the Avatar” novel? The e-book was a reward for early Founder backers of the game. If you've backed the game after the Founder cut-off date, you can still purchase the e-book in the add-on store for $15. It is a great read and it establishes the lore of the setting. I highly recommend grabbing the novel! If you have the e-book (either through Founder status or an add-on purchase), your Account Page has links to any available digital rewards you have earned as a backer, including Tracy Hickman and Richard Garriott’s epic prequel novel, Blade of the Avatar. What if I want to upgrade my pledge? You can upgrade your pledge by going to your Account Page (the link can be found in the upper right corner). Then just click on the upgrade button, select your new tier level, and complete the checkout process. You can pay the full difference between tiers as a one-time payment, or schedule a payment plan that will go through June 2015. I changed my mind. Can I get my money back? The game is still in development, and not everything is final. If there is an aspect of the design you are unhappy with, you can offer your feedback on the forums. The nature of crowd funded development allows you to offer input. Unfortunately, we do not offer refunds, as all funds have already been budgeted and applied to the project. Please review our payment policies for more information. However, if you truly want your money back and no longer want to keep your pledge you may transfer you pledge to another person by posting in the Player Marketplace. Can I have my pledge increased by referring someone else? Unfortunately the referral program has ended. (This is pure speculation but I believe Portalarium had to as part of the Steam roll-out on how sales/credits are handled with a game on Steam). Previously you could get in game credit for referrals, as well as some items for recruiting 1, 5 or 10 people. 1 recruit = You and every backer you recruit will receive a unique, unteachable emote! Only recruiters and recruits will ever have this emote. 5 recruits = a special, unique, hunting dog pet. (Available only through recruiting!) 10 recruits = A Darkstarr Moondial How do I link my Kickstarter Account to shroudoftheavatar.com? Be sure to have your Kickstarter email address handy. Go to Kickstarter.com and login In the upper right-hand corner, click “Me” for a menu drop down Choose “My Profile” under “My Account“ Choose “Edit My Profile” in the upper-right corner Change to the “Account” tab Make note of this email address If you are already registered on our official website: Log in to www.shroudoftheavatar.com. Click the account button at the upper right corner of the screen. Select the “Link Kickstarter Account” button. Follow the instructions. That’s it, you’re done! If you are not registered on our official website Register on our website, www.shroudoftheavatar.com. Log in. Click the account button at the upper right corner of the screen. Select the “Link Kickstarter Account” button. Follow the instructions. Really, it’s that easy! If you still have not received it after checking your Kickstarter email, please submit a ticket to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks! I pledged on your website, not Kickstarter. Do I still have to link a Kickstarter account? The only time a backer needs to link a Kickstarter account is when they made their pledge on Kickstarter, as the linking process allows us to verify their Kickstarter pledge. Since you became a backer on shroudoftheavatar.com, there is no need for you to link to a Kickstarter account. Are pledge items bound to my account? Your account is the place you will receive your items initially, meaning any character created on that account will have access to those items. However those items are not bound to the account. They can be freely traded between players. Once traded, those items are removed from your account permanently so if you create a new character, the items will not reappear. What is the difference between a “Royal Founder”, a “Founder”, a “Benefactor”, and the Founder Pledge Tier? These terms are used to determine the rewards available to a backer. “Royal Founders” are backers that have a pledge made prior to the end of the Grace Period, 12:00 pm CST, May 20, 2013. “Founders” include all the “Royal Founders” as well as any backers that have a pledge that was either transferred or gifted to them by a “Royal Founder” or a “Founder”. Backers with pledges dated after 12 pm CST, May 20, 2013 are referred to as “Benefactors”. There is also a pledge tier called “Founder”, which denotes the actual pledge tier, not the date of purchase. I am a Founder/Royal Founder, why do I have to pay Benefactor prices to upgrade? -- Did I lose my discount? -- Why don't Knight Marshal and Lord Marshal have discounted Founder Prices? April 7th, 2014 marked the end of promotional early Founder pricing. All new pledges and upgrades after April 7th, 2014 are at Benefactor prices, regardless of Benefactor/Founder/Royal Founder status. The two new tiers, Knight Marshal and Lord Marshal, were created after the early Founder pricing cut off and thus only have one price. The cost for Knight Marshal and Lord Marshal is the same for all backers, $1,200 and $2,200 respectively. All backers now pay the same price for pledges/upgrades. I live outside of the United States, how does international shipping work for physical pledge rewards? We have streamlined the process for international shipping fees for physical pledge rewards. Those of you who had already paid for international shipping will notice that the $15 fee is no longer reflected in your pledge amount and now appears on your user account page as an International Shipping add-on. If you live outside of the United States, have physical rewards coming your way, and have never opted for international shipping, please purchase the International Shipping add-on in the add-on store. Even if you have a lot of physical rewards coming, you only need to purchase one International Shipping add-on. Also, if you no longer require international shipping (e.g. you move to the United States) you may convert your International Shipping add-on into store credit. The Kickstarter goal was $1,000,000. Why are you still asking for money? I can't speak 100% for Portalarium as this is an unofficial FAQ. But at the time of the Kickstarter launch, RG was giving interviews to the press where he said he estimated he'd need $5 - $7 million to properly fund the game. Since then they have added stretch goals. They've delayed the release. They've added staff. They're improving the graphics at the request of the community. If you ask for too much during the Kickstarter phase and you don't raise all that money during those 30 days, you get nothing. So it isn't unusual to ask for the bare minimum during the Kickstarter and then continue to raise funds after the Kickstarter. For example, Star Citizen asked for $2 million in their Kickstarter campaign despite Chris Roberts saying he needed $25-$30 million to make the game as he wanted. So he continued to raise money after the campaign. (Note go back Star Citizen if you haven't already). As Portalarium raises more money, they hire more staff and they work on making a better game for us all to enjoy. You are not obligated to increase your pledge just because they offer new tiers or add-ons. Are there any more stretch goals? There were two proposed stretch goals in the Kickstarter campaign for $2.25 and $2.5 million dollars that were not met during the Kickstarter campaign. One of those stretch goals was for mod tools, which has proven to be difficult since Unity was not designed for an exposed scripting language. Those stretch goals were not met and have been set aside. There are some newly announced stretch goals that the community kept asking about. They are being handled in a fairly inventive way, in a separate stretch goal add on store. Players can vote with their wallets on what they want implemented first. These include: House Mounts - $250,000 Elves Playable Race - $300,000 Pack Animals - $100,000 Boats - $500,000 Flexibile Lot Placement of Structures - $250,000 How does the stretch goal store work? The Stretch Goal store is here. The purchase of these add-ons contributes to a stretch reward goal. If that goal is met, that feature is added to the game. For example, you can purchase a unique non-combat pet of a foal for $20. If enough people buy foals or riding outfits, and $250,000 is raised towards mounts, then mounts will be implemented. The foal will grow into a ridable mount. Stretch Goal purchases cannot be melted down Add On Store credit cannot be applied to Stretch Goal purchases All promised Kickstarter stretch goals will be implemented before new stretch goals How do I change my password/avatar? After logging in, click the “Edit Profile” link under your avatar on your Account Page. Alternatively, you can edit your profile directly here. HOUSING FAQ Spoiler Can I own land? Players can own land in Shroud through purchase of a plot of land by purchasing a “Lot Deed”. Player housing will live in the persistent shared world. Land is not instanced and there is a limited number of lots in the world. Once a Lot Deed is purchased a player can choose the lot they want from the open lots still available. Players may own multiple lots. Spoiler Do houses make the game pay to win? Houses are completely optional. You can enjoy the full game without ever owning a house. Houses are vanity/convenience items. All players will have access to banks in game for storage. Houses will not magically make you better at PvP or provide a major advantage in game other than convenience. Can I get a house even if I can't afford a Citizen Ancestor pledge? First off, with the latest updates to pledge tiers there is a new lower cost option for housing. Portalarium listened to the community's demand. New row lots can be obtained in the Ancestor tier and above, starting at $275. Housing can also be obtained with in game gold. The plan at launch is to have enough lots to cover everyone who purchased one ahead of time through pledges and the add-on store, plus another 30% of empty lots for people to purchase with in game gold. If you are worried about not being able to get a house because you can't afford to buy a higher pledge tier or an add-on lot, don't fret. First off, houses are vanity/convenience items. You can fully enjoy the game without a house. You have a few options: Purchase an Ancestor or higher pledge tier to guarantee you will have a lot. Purchase a lot through the add-on store. You can always get a house with in game gold later. The key is securing a lot since those are finite. Wait and purchase a lot with in game gold, though these may eventually sell out in game. Join a guild that will have a shared guild house. You can find a list of guilds here. Contact someone who owns a Player-Owned-Told and request that they reserve you a lot in their town that you can purchase with gold obtained in game after launch. If my pledge includes a waterfront property do I get that in addition to my other house? Yes and no. If you have a Founder pledge that includes multiple house options, including waterfront houses, then you have all those houses to choose from. However, you still have only one deed for one lot. On that lot you may place a single house. If your house is a waterfront lot, you will have the option of placing your waterfront house or another. Update: There is a new proposed stretch goal for flexible lot placement. If this stretch goal is met, then you'd be able to place structures anywhere on a lot, and not just in a set place. This goal would allow you to place a Founder house, and a Founder cabana on the same lot, assuming it was a waterfront lot. When can I lock in my lot? Anyone can grab any lot for testing regardless of pledge level during testing windows. The servers are wiped between test releases. Some time closer to launch, people will be able to permanently lock in their lot selection. There will be a priority order based upon pledge level and other factors. The details of that are still being worked out. How can I purchase a Lot Deed? There are three ways to purchase a Lot Deed. Backers at Ancestor level and above receive Lot Deed with their pledge. Players can also purchase a Lot Deed in the game through earned in game currency. Finally players can purchase Row, Village, Town and City size Lot Deeds from the Add On store. (Note: Row lots are not in the store yet, but should be added soon!) What sizes do Lots come in? Lots come in six sizes: Row (smallest), Village, Town, City, Keep and Castle (largest). Each Village, Town, or City in the game will have a mix of lot sizes available. The larger the habitation, the larger the number of lots and the greater percentage of bigger lots available. For example Cities will have the greatest number of lots and the highest percentage of City sized lots. Keep and Castle lots are only obtainable with the Duke and Lord of the Manor pledge rewards as a means to thanking Portalarium's largest supporters. Row, Village, Town and City lots can be obtained in game. Is there an upkeep cost to Lots? Lots have an in game currency tax that must be paid monthly or the lot reverts to being for sale and the Lot Deed is returned to the owner. Backers at Ancestor level and above receive a tax exempt Lot Deed but the lot can still revert after an extended amount of inactivity (5 months at Citizen level, + one month per tier above that). What happens to my house/basement (and the contents) if my lot reverts? Your house, basement (and the contents) will be placed in the bank. The decoration of your home is maintained, while it is in “storage”. When you deploy your home on a new lot, it will appear just as before. Can I sell my lot to another player? You can sell a lot to another player. If the lot currently has a house on it that house will revert to the owner’s bank. This trade will be taxed by the game. When can I choose my lot? Lot selection will happen shortly before launch. First priority will be given to backers for lot choice. The order will be determined by date and amount of pledge with Royal Founders getting priority over Founders over Benefactors at each tier. Backers will be given an exclusive window to choose their lots. Each backer can choose exactly one lot during the window. The next window will be given to those who purchase lots from the Add-On Store. After that window, lot choice will be open to all players. The selection sequence is still being finalized but you can find current thinking here. Can I own a house? Players can purchase houses in a wide variety of styles and sizes. Placement of a house requires ownership of a lot. Players may own more than one house and can swap / upgrade the house on their lot. How can I purchase a house? There are three ways to purchase a house. Backers at Ancestor level and above receive an exclusive house with their pledge. Players can also purchase houses in the game through earned in game currency. Finally players can purchase houses from the Add On store (some of which are exclusive). How many houses come with Ancestor and above pledges? Each pledge level comes with an exclusive house. Pledge levels above Ancestor get the houses from tiers below as well. For example if you pledge at Benefactor Knight level you will get six homes: Ancestor, Navigator, Developer, Citizen, Edelmann and Knight. Founders also have access to the Founder and Benefactor versions at each tier. There are different kinds of houses? There are a wide variety of houses players can choose from. Style variations include stone keeps, wizard towers, wood and plaster homes, etc. Size variations include Row (smallest), Village, Town, City, Keep and Castle (largest). Each house has a minimum lot size requirement, thus all Row size homes can be placed on any lot size but larger size homes can only be placed on larger lots. Some styles come in multiple sizes but others only come in one or two sizes. Can I own multiple houses? You can own multiple houses but each house requires a lot (one house one lot). You can swap out the house on your lot at any time. Can I own an entire town? You can purchase a town in the Played Owned Town Store. You can pick a general area of the map and work with Portalarium who will determine the specific hex your scene will be in. You'll have a set size in area to divide up into Row, Village, Town, City, Keep and Castle lots as you see fit. The city does not come with lot deeds. You will be given keys to lock and unlock lots for others who want to live in your town. Depending on the size of your town, you will get NPC buildings and some add-on houses included. Do houses automatically adjust to the size of lot they are placed on? Houses do not automatically scale based on the lot they are placed on. Each style and size variation is an individual purchase (ex. Village Wizard Tower, Town Wizard Tower, Village Viking House, etc.). As mentioned above each house has a minimum lot requirement. Can I decorate my house? Players can decorate their house with a large variety of decorations including furniture, crafting stations, artwork, and various trophies found on their adventures. Many of the decorative items can also be crafted by players. Can I sell my house to another player? You can sell a house to another player. This trade is independent of the lot (i.e. you do not need to sell a lot with the house). This trade will be taxed by the game. Can other players come to my lot and/or house? You can flag your lot and/or house to private, friends only, or open to all players. Can other players interact with my lot and/or house if I grant them access? Players on your friends list can enter your property and use crafting stations but they cannot modify anything nor take anything. You can also add a limited number of friends to your deed as “kindred” (term not final). Kindred will have access to your house storage and be able to use crafting stations. We are investigating the feasibility for kindred to participate in decorating as well. The number of kindred allowed per deed is based on the size of the lot and/or house, the bigger the property the more kindred you can flag (exact numbers to be determined later). Are there group ownership options? Player guilds can own property as a group. They may even have player towns. The exact details about how this works will be released at a later date. Can I have an NPC vendor on my lot? Players can purchase an NPC vendor for their lot to sell goods to other players. These trades will be taxed by the game. Backers at Citizen level and above receive a tax free vendor. Will there be temporary housing (ex: inns, apartments, etc.)? Temporary housing is not currently scheduled for Episode 1. Will there be storage of items outside of player inventory (ex: banks)? Yes there will be storage for items outside of player inventory. Banks are currently planned for R12. Will Lot Deeds and Houses work differently for offline characters? Property will work slightly differently for offline characters in the following ways. Lot Deeds are tax exempt for offline characters. All lots in the game are available to offline characters since they will not be competing with other players for the land. As noted above offline characters cannot interact with online characters in any way. Can I expand my lot or house? Lots and houses can be expanded by purchasing a basement. This basement will exist underneath your plot of land. How do I purchase a basement? There are three ways to purchase a basement. Backers at Navigator level and above receive a basement with their pledge. Players can also purchase basements in the game through earned in game currency. Finally players can purchase basements from the Add On store (some of which are exclusive). Are there different size basements? Basements will come in the six basic sizes, just like the lots: Row, Village, Town, City, Keep and Castle. Each size also comes in single or multiple floor options (up to 5 stories) as well as different layouts. Are there different styles of basements? Basements will be available in various styles (finished stone, rough stone, cave, mine, etc.). Can I decorate my basement? Players can decorate their basement with a large variety of decorations including furniture, crafting stations, artwork, and various trophies found on their adventures. Many of the decorative items can also be crafted by players. PLAYER OWNED TOWN FAQ Spoiler Will I be able to choose where the lots will be placed in my town? We will be building the player owned towns from templates and modifying them based on requests. Players can submit a general layout request and we will get as close as we can based on our starting templates. Can players help design their towns; even what kind of biome it has? We will be building the player owned towns from templates and modifying them based on requests. Players can submit detailed requests, like biomes, and we will get as close as we can based on our starting templates. Can town owners select their NPC buildings? Will I also be able to decide where they are placed? Yes, players can pick which NPC buildings they want (number of buildings based on town size). We will be building the player owned towns from templates and modifying them based on requests. Players can submit layout requests for the town including NPC building location and we will get as close as we can based on our starting templates. Do we get to create the lore for our town and name the NPC’s? Yes! This is a bit of shameless self-promotion but I (EnderAndrew this FAQ writer) am willing to help you write NPC dialogue or in game book submissions to help flesh out the lore of your town. I will even do this completely for free, but I also won't turn down gifts from the Stretch Goal store. You can commission my writing here. Can we pick where our Town is located in Novia? Yes, players can request a location for their town. As stated in the Add-on Store, the location will be limited to roughly the “quadrant of the map”. Exact hex location will be determined by Portalarium. This is because we have to place and balance them around plot points, dungeons, and adventure areas. Can a town be upgraded? If so, how will that work? For Episode 1, upgrading to a bigger town from an already established town will require replacing the old map with a new, larger map. This means players will have to store and move their houses from the old map to the new map Does a town generate income for the owner? Do we get a part of the tax on used lots or make money from our vendors? For Episode 1, we currently do not plan to have these towns generate income for the owner via the game systems. However players are free to earn income by renting the lots in their town to other players. How will sieges effect player owned towns? Though it was not in our original design to have sieges impact player owned towns, but if players think this would be fun we could expand the sieges to include player owned towns. However, some PvP options will be available to Town Owner. Can I flag my player owned town as an Open PVP Zone? Yes you can! *cue wild west music* When can I start my design session with the team? We will be contacting town owners in the next few months to get this process started. How will you schedule the design sessions and how will deal with conflicts of location and name requests? We will be honoring requests based on town size and purchase date. Example: Metropolis owners will go first and they will be sorted by purchase date with oldest purchase having highest priority. How will the Player Owned Town owner control who can place a deed in their town? Permissions to use a lot in a Player Owned Town (or be evicted from a lot) will be extension of the player property permissions menu, not an actual object like a key. We want the player town owner to always have permissions control and this is the most robust way to insure that. COMBAT & MAGIC FAQ Spoiler Are there Character Classes and how will Advancement work? Shroud of the Avatar is a classless system will allow players to define and play any role they choose. There will be a clear path for growth and specialization while also maintaining opportunities for competition and cooperation. Players gain two kinds of experience (Crafting and Adventuring) based on the kind of activities they are doing. Players level up in either Crafting or Adventuring at certain experience point totals. When players level up they get skill points and increases to their stats. The players can use those skill points to learn skills from a trainer. There are no classes so players can spend skill points on any kind of skill as long as they meet the prerequisites (almost always a preceding skill in a tree). You can read more about current thinking here. How does the Skills System work? There are Active Skills (yellow in the skill trees) and Innate Skills (white). Active skills are used by the player during combat to produce a desired effect (fireball, heal, parry, etc.). Innate Skills are on all the time and increase the effects (power, range, etc.) of all skills in the school. Adding skill points to an Innate Skill increases the effect of that innate skill. This has the knock off effect of eliminating the need to pump Active Skills. Adding skill points to Active Skills increases the number of copies of that skill the player has therefore increasing the frequency that skill will appear during combat. There are “hidden” Active Skills that can only be used by doing combos with skills during combat. How will combat work in Shroud of the Avatar? Combat is real time with a shortcut bar that is used to trigger actions. Prior to combat players will assemble decks. Decks will be an assemblage of spells, combat moves, consumables, etc. During combat the contents of your deck will be shuffled and skills will be randomly dealt out with the exception of skills that have been locked (see below). Combat is described in this mega-post. Portions of this system are in place now, but deck building, death and some of the systems won't be implemented until R8 (July) or R9 (August). Will I need to aim in combat? No, you can select a target by double-clicking on it, or pressing tab. Is combat trinity based (tank/heals/DPS)? Not directly. This is a classless system and you're not tied into a strict role of tank, healer, DPS, etc. There are abilities to do damage, to heal, to affect aggro, etc. However you can mix these abilities however you want in a deck. How will I set “Locked Slots” and how do they relate to the number of skills in my deck? The locked slots will actually be part of your deck build and change when you change decks. Skills in locked slots count towards the number of minimum skills in your deck. Will I be able to build multiple decks? Absolutely. That is part of the beauty of the system. We can allow you to build multiple decks to suit your current play style and switch between one tuned for soloing to one that lets you take on more traditional tank/healer/dps/crowd control roles to one suited for PvP situations. Decks will have a fixed minimum amount of skills (currently based on level) and a player set maximum size. Can I switch decks during combat? Yes but there will be a cost. The most likely option is it will drain a significant chunk of your focus and take a second or two to switch. We have discussed adding a skill to make switching in combat less painful and faster for those who want to set up multiple, very focused decks. Can I switch roles? Yes. If you want a deck more focused on damage or healing, you just swap decks. Are there Damage Types and Resistances? There are 6 damage types (with corresponding resistances). Physical: Armor provides most protection against. Weapons, Poison, etc. Magical: Tends to ignore armor. Encompasses magical damage not covered by an elemental type. Electrical: Stuns targets. Lightning, static charges, etc. Cold: Slows targets. Ice, Snow, etc. Heat: Does damage over time. Fire, Radiant energy (like the sun), etc. Chaotic: Impossible to resist. What are the different Schools of Magic? There are 9 schools of magic. We want each school of magic to have a theme and some interactions with other magic schools (either cooperative or versus). Some schools are in natural opposition (Life vs. Death) while some are naturally complementary (Air & Sun). Here are the schools of magic: Life Magic: Healing, curing, fighting death. Death Magic: Transferring life to caster from enemies, summoning undead. Sun Magic: Removing/reducing stealth. Moon Magic: Stealth. Earth Magic: Physical attacks with stun effects, crowd control. Air Magic: Electric attacks, speed, dexterity. Water Magic: Icy attacks that slow targets, minor healing, fight fire. Fire Magic: Damage over time. Chaos: Disruption, High chance of fizzle and backfire (unpredictable effects). Do magic spells require reagents? All active magic skills require reagents. Combat skills do not require reagents. What are the different Schools of Combat? We want each school of combat to have a theme. There are 4 Offensive Schools and 4 Defensive Schools. All Combat Skills (active & innate) require the corresponding gear to be equipped (i.e. to use a Blades skill you must have a sword in your hand). Note that all weapons and armor can be used by characters, increasing skills makes them more effective. Here are the Schools of Combat: Offensive: Blades: Swords, Daggers. Fast direct damage. Weaker against heavy armor. Polearms: Halberds and Spears. Crowd Control with roots, knockdowns and knockbacks. Good against most armor. Bludgeons: Clubs, Maces, Axes, and Hammers. Lowest direct damage but offset with crowd control (stun, knockback, knockdown) and high damage to armor and weapons. Ranged: Bows and Crossbows. Hitting targets at distance but requires ammo. Defensive: Light Armor: Has least focus or movement penalties. Best for stealth and magic. Also is least expensive armor to maintain. Medium Armor: Best balanced armor between protection and minimal penalties. Heavy Armor: Best protection but biggest penalties for movement, encumbrance, and focus. Shields: Defensive school with most cooperative skills. Will there be PvP? Absolutely! The goal is to create a compromise where players who aren't interested in PvP aren't forced into non-consensual PvP. But players who do want to engage in PvP are presented with risk and reward to make PvP enjoyable. There are PvP specific skills, and PvP is even interwoven into the lore with an Oracle questline. The current thinking on PvP has been outlined in this mega-post. PvP systems are currently planned for R11 in October. PvP is a core tenet of the game, but it can't be properly implemented until all combat systems are properly implemented first. Is PvP full loot? No. This system is designed around compromise. If you win a PvP match, you will be able to loot one item from the defeated character (50% chance it is an equipped item and 50% chance it is from their inventory). The defeated player can just concede the item, or pay a random in appropriate gold to keep the item. But the winner always receives something. One of the advantages of this system is a defeated player can more quickly re-enter battle to keep PvP going. Will I ever be forced to PvP? Absolutely not. First off, you can engage in single player offline, single player online, or friends only online, so that doesn't affect you in those modes. Even in open persistent only with everyone, if you are not flagged for PvP, you can not be attacked in most areas or forced into PvP. There will be a handful of areas where everyone in that instance is open to PvP, but you are not forced to go there. Are the rewards for PvP? Players are encouraged to see all of the content created. PvP will be incentivized with rewards. It burns when I PvP. That isn't a question, but I recommend you see a healer for treatment. What happens when a character dies in game? When a player dies in SotA, they immediately become a ghost at the location of their corpse. As a ghost, players can no longer speak normally, but instead can only speak in ghost speak (oooOOOOoooOOOooO). We are also considering a “speak with dead” type skill in the life or moon magic tree to expand on communication with ghosts. Ghosts will be able to see and speak with each other however. Ghosts appear to players as a shimmering point of light, and ghosts can not interact with any physical items in the world. As soon as a player becomes a ghost, the player’s view of the game becomes monochrome, slowly starts to become blurred and darken, and other players and creatures appear as shimmering points of light to limit spying. After a period of darkening, if the player has not been revived, their spirit and corpse will both be ripped back to the nearest point of connection to the other side and rebound together as one. Most scenes have one or more of these “weak spots” in reality that let the player’s outlander spirit reconnect with the world of New Britannia. This might be a graveyard, a church, or a travelling spirit. Leaving the scene will always force the spirit to reconnect, as will disconnecting. Reconnecting without rebinding will cause the most damage to the player upon rejoining the spirit to the body. Penalties include damage to all worn gear, experience debt, possible loss of an item to other players or creatures, and brief spirit rebinding sickness. The penalties for death in PVP and death in PVE are nearly the same. The only major difference is that for PVP death, the experience debt is primarily against PVP experience and PVE death is primarily against PVE experience. Will there be control points? Yes! Combos sound cool, is it always just 2 skills or do they go deeper? Combos can go much deeper than 2 skills in practice- typically combos result in 2 skills turning into 1 new skill. Since the result of a combo creates a new skill, that skill can combine with other skills to create something that goes beyond a two skill combo. For example: 2 fireballs might combine to create a firestorm, a firestorm plus a fireball might create a fire vortex, and a fire vortex may go even further than that! Can skills be used out of combat? Most skills can be used out of combat. There are a few, like the “Control Demon” spell that you cast to try and take control of the demon summoned by the “Summon Demon” spell that is combat only. Of course it is combat only because as soon as you summon the demon, you are in combat and it is trying to kill you. How will I set “Locked Slots” and how do they relate to the number of skills in my deck? The locked slots will actually be part of your deck build and change when you change decks. Skills in locked slots count towards the number of minimum skills in your deck. I worry the UI will draw my attention away from combat, what is the plan for that? This is actually our largest concern and we’re working on solutions for this. The icons shown in past demos aren’t easily recognizable with peripheral vision and need more work. Part of our future plans include making things color coded and easy to recognize. We are also currently experimenting with several on screen options but so far they all feel too immersion breaking and disorienting. Many aspects of the UI can be disabled piece-meal (compass, nameplates, etc) or can disable the entire UI at once for a screenshot. Will there be DPS counters? No, and you may not even get an exact display for enemy hit points (though enemies may convey they currently health/wound levels through other means). Combat in SotA is designed to immersive and dynamic. Instead of performing the same rotation ad nauseum and watching exact numbers, combat should be tense and exciting. After a bit of debate, floating combat numbers are in the current builds. That does not mean they will always remain since this has been a debated topic. When can I try it?!? The current public release of the game is R12 which will run from November 20th through November 26th. After that, they plan on trying to leave the servers up 24/7 starting December 1st. release schedule for more details. Where can I learn more? If you have an appropriate pledge, you can access this thread here. CRAFTING FAQ Spoiler How will crafting work? There are three rings of Crafting: Gathering, Refining and Production. Each ring contains five different skills. The rings represent the paths required to make items. All crafting activities require tools. Refining and Production also require crafting tables and recipes in addition to tools. You can read more about our current thinking here. How will player crafted items relate to game generated items? With the exception of a few plot specific items players will be generating most of the items that appear in the game and for the most part the items they create will be the best that can be found. For example when a player crafts 6 Heavy Iron Swords and sells them to a shopkeeper that shopkeeper will keep 3 of them to stock their shop and the other 3 will go into the loot tables for the world. Since all player made items have a maker’s mark when you kill an enemy NPC you have a good chance of finding an item made by another player in their inventory and you will be able to know which player made it! Do you need Recipes to make items? All refining and production requires recipes. Every player has a Crafting Journal which tracks the recipes they have. Each player starts with a broad set of general recipes but the rest must be purchased, traded, or discovered through experimentation. How are the Crafting Skills laid out? Crafting skill trees have two skill types: Generalized (darker) and Specialized (lighter). Generalized skills affect things like quality, quantity, tool use, etc and they modify all the results of that particular crafting school. Specialized skills improve success chances for types of items. For ultra-high quality items the chances may be so low that specialized skills are required. Gathering and Refining skills are lumped into two schools that cover all the types of gathering and refining in those two schools. Production skills are divided out into individual schools of each Production type. What is Gathering? Gathering is getting raw resources that can be refined or in some cases (reagents) used directly. This is the innermost ring on the Crafting Sigil and includes: Mining, Forestry, Agriculture, Field Dressing, and Foraging. What is Refining? Refining is taking raw resources and turning them into refined elements that can be used to make complete items. This is the middle ring of the Crafting Sigil and includes: Smelting, Milling, Textiles, Tanning, and Butchery. What is Production? Production is taking refined elements or raw resources and turning them into finished goods like weapons, furniture, potions, etc. This is the outermost ring of the Crafting Sigil and includes Blacksmithing, Carpentry, Tailoring, Cooking, and Alchemy. Each Production school starts by learning to make and use the tools of that trade. Each point spent on a specialized Production skill increases the chance for success when making that item type. GUILD FAQ Spoiler How do I create or join a guild? There is no formal system in game or on this website for guilds yet. However, there is a sub-forum where you may create a thread if intend to form a guild in game. You may also find threads for other guilds to join. I maintain a list of guilds here. Will guilds be able to share property? The owner of a property may share access rights to guild members. Player towns have also just been announced. When will guilds be introduced to the game? Basic guilds features were added in R12. R13 will allow you to show your title and guild affiliation.