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Release 41

April 27, 2017[1][edit]

Release 41 access for all Early Access backers begins this Thursday, April 27, at 10:30 AM US Central Daylight Time (15:30 UTC).

Release 41 (R41) is another leap forward in progress with an incredible amount of new content (5 new scenes!) as well as a ton of balance and polish. The Path of Truth is now playable from beginning to end, including the twisted Halls of Artifice, Solace Bridge Outskirts now eases new players into the game at a much better pace, more gear can be placed as decorations, combat got lots of balancing including Taming, and Localization has resumed.

R41 instructions.jpg

Truth and Artifice: The Path of Truth is now playable to completion with the addition of the Halls of Artifice. In this single-player, plot-driven experience, the avatar will delve into the mystery of why the satyrs of Elysium are welcoming pilgrims into a life of bliss... Of course, I am sure that a place called Artifice along the Path of Truth would not be filled with lies, right?

SotA Artifice Entrance11.jpg

Solace Bridge Outskirts and Interface Polish: We are continuing to focus on steady improvements to the new user experience. This effort is twofold. First, we have begun to create new “Outskirts” maps, which will be expansive scenes in which new players will be able to explore many different aspects of the game. Solace Bridge Outskirts appears in Release 41, with more to follow in upcoming releases. Second, we have continued to make incremental improvements to the user interface. One such improvement in R41 is the addition of an information button to several interfaces that brings up help information. A myriad of other UI fixes and improvements are detailed below.

Solace-Bridge-Outskirts-1.jpg

Ruins of Kas, Verdantis Mines, and The Fall: These three new scenes bring an incredibly diverse range of play opportunities to the game. The Ruins of Kas provide a vertical fortress assault in an Open PVP area. Verdantis Mines is a dungeon full of danger and ore. The Fall is a PVP free-for-all full of crazy powerups centered around a giant vertical shaft.

Kas-12.jpg

Decorations: What you can decorate your home with got yet another dramatic expansion this release with over 160 new pieces of gear now placeable as decorations. This includes all shields, tools, and headgear (as well as some additional weapons). We also expanded the Patterns/Reshaping system to work with decorations so that custom covers may be applied to books.

Combat Balance: Improving balance in combat was a major focus for Release 41. We made major improvements to Taming, Summoned Creatures, the entire Bludgeons combat school, creature resistances, and more. We also added two new Moon Spells, new weapons, and our first new ranged weapon since ranged combat was introduced: Crossbows.

Localization: We are very excited that localization has started again with our amazing international community using the Zanata platform.

Yet again, I want to express a huge amount of gratitude to our Dev+ backers who tested all of the items below on the QA server and uncovered lots of bugs. They also provided editorial feedback on this post. They are a big reason that this post actually matches what is in the game and that it is easy to read.

While we are getting closer to launch, we are still in a constant state of change. We do not yet have all of the in-game systems needed to inform players about these changes, and to help them to explore new content and systems. This means we rely mostly on this message, and the linked instructions and known issues to convey the current game state. We regularly have to answer questions or filter bug reports because some players elect not to read this valuable information.

By taking a few moments to read through this information, a great deal of our time and efforts can be redirected to focus on new “unanswered” questions and addressing critical issues impacting each release. We greatly appreciate you taking the time to review this post and for all the truly valuable feedback you continue to provide.

Also, remember that while we are providing new content with each release, our community is working overtime to make new events for you to enjoy. Be sure to check out a couple of the event calendars run by our community members (via in-game book or the player-run websites: Avatars Circle and Events of the Avatars). You can also get the latest official events on the Main Website.

Without further ado, here is a list of what you can expect to see in Release 41.

Key:

  • Plain Text: The original plan for the Release deliverables. We intentionally preserve the original text so that our backers can compare plan versus actuals.
  • Italics: Extra notes and new deliverables.
  • Strikethrough: These are items that did not make the release (but are still planned).

RELEASE 41, April 27, 2017

  • Story: We will begin polishing the Path of Truth with the Dungeon of Artifice coming online for the first time. We will also polish visuals of the final sequence with the Titan Grannus in the Path of Courage. The incidental NPCs and side quests along the Path of Courage will also be worked on in locations like Estgard and Harvest. Verdantis Mines and the Kas Ruins scenes will both be uncloned. The Fall, a new PvP dungeon underneath Blood Bay, will appear in the game. Solace Bridge Outskirts, a new scene that players start in after the Battle of Solace Bridge will come online for the first time.
  • The Path of Truth and Artifice: The Path of Truth is now playable to completion with the addition of the Halls of Artifice. A single-player, plot driven experience, the avatar will delve into the mystery of why the satyrs of Elysium are welcoming pilgrims into a life of bliss... To enter the Halls of Artifice, ensure that you have followed the plot of the Path of Truth to Xenos, in particular having spoken to the elf Notus, and then speak with the satyr at Artifice's entrance. Note: even if you have spoken with Notus before R41, you will need to speak with him in Xenos again this release to gain admittance.
Hall-of-Wealth-Without-Limits 03a.jpg
  • Titan Grannus Finale: MINOR SPOILERS: At the completion of the Path of Courage, Grannus the Titan undergoes a visual transformation that matches the storyline to that point.
  • Estgard & Harvest: The non-plot focused characters of Harvest and Estgard now have schedules, directional conversations and patrols. These two towns are encountered along the Path of Courage.
  • Verdantis Mines: The Verdantis Mines are in the northern tip of the Mariah Mountains in the Verdantis region which can be found in the northwest of Novia. The elves of the region have been mining these mountains for many years and recently they broke through to an ancient underground city full of rich ore nodes and other treasures. Unfortunately, it is also full of undead and, in its deepest places, Fire Elementals. The Verdantis Mines started as a clone of Graff Gem Mines but has been completely rebuilt for Release 41. Based on feedback received regarding resources in Serpent’s Spine Mines, we have increased the ore resource node counts as part of the scene unclone.
Verdantis3a.jpg
  • The Fall: No one is quite sure who built this mysterious dungeon beneath Blood Bay, but it is filled with an incredible array of dangers and rewards. The Fall gets its name from the giant vertical open space that defines the middle of the dungeon with crisscrossing bridges and elevators. This dungeon is an Open PVP area, so enter at your own risk!
The-Fall-12.jpg
  • Kas Ruins: The Kas Ruins are one of the six ruined cities found in Novia that date back to the period in Novian history in which the Obsidian Order rose to power. (As described in the Sword of Midras prequel novel by Tracy Hickman and Richard Garriott). The exact history of some of these cities has been lost to time, but it is rumored that some of them may have been abandoned even before the rise of the Obsidians. Kas is the site of the ruins of an ancient Paladin fort high atop a mountainside. At the foot of the mountain is an abandoned village with a small graveyard. The entire area has become overrun by the undead. Kas started as a clone of the Opalis Ruins, but has been completely rebuilt this release to have a unique layout and visuals. Like all the other Ruins and Shardfalls, this is an Open PVP area so we are expressly focusing on being sure the map has interesting setups for PVP conflict, with plenty of space for hiding, escaping, ambushing, and skirmishing.
Kas-5.jpg
  • Rhun, Kas, Dysborg, & Midras Ruins Vaults: There are six ruined cities found in Novia that date back to the period in Novian history in which the Obsidian Order rose to power. (These were first described in the "Sword of Midras" prequel novel, by Tracy Hickman and Richard Garriott). The exact history of some of these cities has been lost to time, but it is rumored that some of them may have been abandoned even before the rise of the Obsidians. These ruins include Opalis, Libris, Rhun, Midris, Kas, and Dysborg. Deep beneath these ruins lie Underground Vaults that rumors hint are somehow linked to the Dire Prophecies. Rumor also has it that the vaults are not only connected to the ruins above, but also the vast underground network of dungeons and sewers that crisscrosses Novia below. In Release 41, the Vaults beneath Rhun, Kas, Dysborg, and Midras are now connected.
Dysborg-Vault.jpg
  • Solace Bridge Outskirts: For several years now our backers have been providing us feedback that the first few hours of our game have several major issues. Those issues include too many loading screens, scenes that are too small, and starting towns that include player housing/vendors. As we shift our focus to improving the New User Experience (NUE), and as we are able to measure new player progress through events like our recent free trial, we realize that we must address these issues sooner versus later. As we announced during the Spring Telethon, our solution to this is to add three new maps to the game that we are calling "Outskirts." These scenes will be very close to the three starting scenes and players will go directly there after finishing those starting scenes. Outskirts will be very large scenes, similar in scope to some of our recent big scenes like Blood Bay. This will allow them to be large enough that players can base themselves in a single scene for adventuring, resupply for their first couple of hours without having to go through multiple scene loads, or having to use the Overworld. Each scene will have a small outpost that will include some shopkeepers, trainers, crafting stations, and a few quest givers (and no player housing!). The scenes will also include plenty of adventuring areas (forests, ruins, bandit camps, etc.). Our first Outskirts scene is Solace Bridge Outskirts. It is downriver from Solace Bridge where the Solace River meets the ocean. The small army that was defeated at Solace Bridge has retreated here and sent the villager refugees to Soltown. They have made camp in a ruined tower overlooking the swampy shoreline. However, they are not getting to rest in their retreat, for a nearby bandit camp is preying on them, stealing supplies. Plus, across the river lie the ruins of an ancient village infested with the very undead they just retreated from! NOTE: This the first iteration of the scene and it contains 6 quests. We plan to add at least one more quest and do a few polish passes on this as we get data on players using the scene.
Solace-Bridge-Outskirts-12.jpg
  • Siege Polish:
  • Sieges and POTs: Sieges are now visible when entering POTs from the Overworld, not just when leaving.
  • Siege Messaging: When you try to enter a town under siege a message now appears: “The town you are trying to enter is under siege. To enter the town you must first fight your way through the siege lines. Do you want to proceed?”
  • Sieges and Low Levels: Characters below level 20 now bypass sieges completely and receive a message: "Due to your relatively low power sympathetic defenders wave you through the siege lines directly into the town."
  • Catapults Visibility: NPCs in Sieges now immediately spawn in when the scene starts and do not wait for players to get within 90m like in other scenes. This now makes it so that player will now immediately see catapults firing in the distance when entering these scenes.
  • Love Path for Trial Visitors: Since the Love Path is our most polished experience and the first path to get one of our new Outskirts scenes, we are going to temporarily force all Trial Visitors down the Love Path.
  • Task and Hint Polish in Starter Scenes: Started polishing the pace and sequencing of the tasks and associated on screen hints in the starter scenes starting with the Battle of Solace Bridge. This will continue to be polished over the next several releases.
  • Approach to Tower of the Shuttered Eye Polish: Added more interest to the map including poison gas fields, confusing gas fields, and other dangers!
  • Kiln and Jaanaford Devotionals: Kiln now has the Honor Devotional (was Justice) and Jaanaford now has the Justice Devotional (was Honor). Players rightly pointed out that since the Druid Jaana was devoted to Justice, that Jaanaford (her namesake town) should have the Justice Devotional, so we swapped the Kiln and Jaanaford Devotionals.
  • Serpent's Spine Mines: In response to player feedback, we have added some additional iron and silver ore resource nodes to this scene.
  • Brittany Sewers: A new, modestly-sized section of Brittany Sewers has been opened up under Brittany Wharfs. This area does not yet connect with the rest of the scene, but does provide an additional point of access to The Fall.
  • Ardoris: Added street signs and street names to aid navigation through the city.
  • Archery Targets: These are now functioning in all scenes.
  • Virtue Tests: We have added more events in the game that will affect your virtue.
  • Twins Foothills: Added Tier 6 and Tier 8 plunderers to the camp at the northwest corner of the map. The Tier 8 enemies mostly come at night. Mostly.
  • Skrekk: The surface map that leads to the Caverns of Skrekk now has Tier 8 and Tier 10 City Kobolds (Brawlers) in a small outpost near the entrance to the underground capital of the Kobolds. The Kobolds guarding the immediate entrance to the Caverns of Skrekk now have City Kobold appearances as well.
  • Elad’s Lighthouse: Wildlife (birds, rabbits, and other creatures) has been scattered around the entire scene.
  • Soltown Sewers: Adjusted spawn rates and decreased max spawn counts.
  • Superstition Canyon: Katagus will now teleport you across the control point properly.
  • Mallard Ducks: These cute waterfowl can be found in a several towns across Novia, including Storms Reach, Point West, and Brittany Fields, amongst others.
  • Rez Ankhs for Starter Scenes: Doubled the number of Resurrection Ankhs in Battle of Solace Bridge, Bloodriver Massacre, and Battle of Highvale to be kinder to new players who might die.
  • Selling Quest Items: Fixed a bug where these items could be sold to merchants, therefore making it impossible to finish quests.
  • Scene Fixes: We went through tons of scenes in the game fixing major and minor bugs including conversations, stuck spots, floating assets, missing assets, bad NPC patrols, inaccessible ore nodes, missing collision, missing/misplaced Resurrection Ankhs, falling through the world, etc.
  • Aerie
  • Ardoris
  • Battle of Highvale
  • Battle of Solace Bridge
  • Blood Bay
  • Brittany Alleys
  • Broochash
  • Central Brittany
  • Crypt of the Avatar
  • Deep Ravenswood
  • Desolis
  • Dysborg Ruins
  • Estgard
  • Etceter Crag Mines
  • Forest Siege
  • Greymark Forest
  • K’rawl
  • Kiln
  • Kingsport
  • Midras Ruin
  • Owls Head
  • Resolute
  • Rhun Ruins
  • Ruined Keep
  • Serpent’s Spine Mines
  • Solania
  • Soltown
  • Spectral Foothills
  • Spite
  • The Necropolis
  • Upper Tears
  • Verdantis Shardfall
  • Vertas
  • Performance: Significant focus will be made on performance this release with emphasis on stability, framerate, memory, and load times.
  • Shader Instancing: We have started using instancing for our shaders which should result in an overall framerate increase in all scenes. This both reduces GPU and CPU load especially in scenes with a large number of duplicate objects, like cities.
  • Fireworks Boxes: Optimized the textures of these objects.
  • Performance Focus Delayed: While we did a couple of tasks related to performance, it was not the major focus we had intended. We hope to spend more time in Release 42 and 43 on performance improvements, including another Unity upgrade which has generated significant improvements on internal tests.
  • Player Towns & Player Housing: Updates to Dynamic Player-Owned Towns that have locked submission forms will appear in the game. Additionally Shields, Tools, and Helmets will become place-able as decorations.
  • Shields, Tools, and Headgear Decorations: Over 200 additional equippable items can now be placed as decorations, including all shields, tools, and headgear (helmets and hats). You can view the entire list in this forum post. Here is just a small sample of that giant list:
  • Chainmail Helm
  • Augmented Chainmail Helm
  • Cloth Helm
  • Augmented Cloth Helm
  • Epic Cloth Helm
  • Leather Helm
  • Augmented Leather Helm
  • Epic Leather Helm
  • Plate Helm
  • Augmented Plate Helm
  • Epic Plate Helm
  • Steel Clockwork Armor Helm
  • Bucket Helmet
  • Viking Helmet
  • Knight Marshal's Winged Helm
  • Lord Marshal Helm
  • Imperial Heater Shield
  • Adorned heater Shield
  • Norgard Heater Shield
  • Rectangle Shield
  • Viking Brynhildr Shield
  • Viking Guor Shield
  • Viking Tyr Shield
  • Heavy Round Shield
  • Imperial Buckler Shield
  • Adorned Buckler Shield
  • Gilded Buckler Shield
  • Hoe
  • Mortar and Pestle
  • Smithing Hammer
  • Cleaver
  • Carpentry Hammer
  • Cooking Pot
  • Fishing Rod
  • Harvesting Axe
  • Pickaxe
  • Sickle
  • Skinning Knife
  • Cubit Measure
  • Smelting Tongs
  • Tailoring Scissors
  • Tanning Knife
  • Loom Shuttle
  • etc
  • Weapon Decorations: Fixed a few weapons that we missed in R40:
  • Dastardly Vile Sword
  • Electric Two-Handed Axe
  • Falchion
  • Gaudy Vile Spear
  • Indignant Vile Halberd
  • Morning Star
  • Norgard Spatha
  • Norgard Spiked Club
  • Obsidian Hand Axe
  • Ornate Norgard Battle Axe
  • Shard of Night
  • Ancient Columned City Home: This enormous home is based on the Hall of Boreus (historical spelling of the Titan Boreas) found in Xenos. With its imposing front steps, numerous tall columns, gilded details, and marble floors it is suitable for a great hall, temple, court of justice, guild chambers, or an ostentatious residence. SPOILER: It also features a secret lower level accessed via a sliding hatch.
Ancient-Columned-City-Home-2.jpg
  • Harpsichords: Our newest placeable musical instruments are Lord British’s favorite: Harpsichords! There is an in-game craftable Harpsichord and an Ornate Red & Gold Filigree version in the Add On Store.
Sota ornate red and gold filigree harpsichord.jpg
  • Bottom Exterior Floor Decoration Flag: In Release 40 we introduced the “Bottom Floor Decoration Flag” to restrict certain items for placement only on bottom floors. This allows us to keep items that only make visual sense on bottom floors constrained to those floors. A whole class of items that we either only allowed for placement outside or we allowed inside (but could be placed nonsensically) can be placed properly indoors. This includes Gravestones, Tombs, Crypts, Wells, and Basement Hatches. We are extending this in Release 41 with an additional flag, the “Bottom Exterior Floor Decoration Flag” that encompasses Porches, Patios, Decks, Docks, etc. so that you can also place these items in your home’s exterior spaces.

Vendors and “Magic Movers” (Property Manager): Player-owned Vendors now keep their inventory when a house or basement is stored via the Property Manager. This should facilitate use of multiple property configurations. For example, a player may want to have both business and party home setups. This is now possible without needing to restock vendor inventories each time that the business setup is sent to storage.

  • Hospitallers Artwork: Community member Leostorm’s loving tribute to the Hospitallers is now an in-game painting and tapestry for sale at Caravaggio’s Wolf, the Gold Crown Art Dealer in Ardoris.
  • Darkstarr Moondial: This orrery has been updated to reflect the latest changes to the astronomical positions of the heavenly bodies and we have added an outer ring for the constellations. It can also be placed in POTs now.
03-Dolus Avara Nefas-Attacks-against-Devotional-of-Honor-withlogo.jpg
  • New Statues
  • Topiary Statues: For the Spring Telethon we made topiary statues covered in white flowers which players seemed to really like so we made plain versions without flowers of a bunch of our statues. You can find these in the Add-On Store.
  • Titan Statues: Originally the Titan statues were only available in gigantic forms as Player Owned Town decorations, but after numerous player requests we have made normal statue scaled sizes of these. The statues of the Titan of Love, Titan of Courage, and Titan of Truth can be found in the Add-On Store.
  • Lich Statues (larger): Players really loved the table top lich statue we created in Release 39 and asked for a full size version, so we created a full size and giant version of this statue for the Add-On Store.
Sota statue lich giant view2.jpg
  • Tabletop Greco-Roman Statues: Players really loved the Greco-Roman statues we added to the game in Release 39 and asked for tabletop versions, so we created these smaller sizes for the Add-On Store.
  • Fine Upholstered Furniture: This new furniture suite consists of 7 different pieces and comes in two versions: Fine Red Upholstery and Fine White & Gold Upholstery. They will be sold in 8 piece sets in the Add-On Store.
Sota fine red upholstered furniture set collage.jpg
  • Chair (comes as a pair)
  • Armchair
  • Barrel Chair
  • Barrel Sofa
  • Loveseat
  • Wooden Trimmed Loveseat
  • Long Couch
  • Blacklist for NPC & Item Naming: Item naming now uses the same blacklist as player names. This includes NPCs (POT, Vendors, etc.), pets, items (chests, gear), etc.
  • Bedrolls: These can now be slept in by using them (invoked via double clicking).
  • Fine Oak Bookshelf: Increased height of shelves so player made books will fit. NOTE: This makes the bookshelf slightly taller and will adversely affect placed decorations until they are repositioned.
  • House Fixes: Fixed various issues in homes including places where decorations could not be placed, stairs that could not be climbed without jumping, etc.
  • Baron Frigate
  • Citizen Benefactor Village
  • Edelmann Founder
  • Greenhouse Homes (Fixed growth rate bonus bugs)
  • Keep Stone 2-Story Basement
  • Stucco 4 Story w/Left Alcove Row
  • Village Tower
  • Wood & Plaster 3 Story Village
  • R40 Lot Deed Raffle Tickets: The drawings for our Eighth Lot Deed Raffle will be held on April 27, 2017 and winners will be announced shortly thereafter. Deeds will be delivered in Release 41.
  • Place Anywhere Deeds (10):
  • Row: 5
  • Village: 3
  • Town: 1
  • City: 1
  • Player Owned Town Deeds (10):
  • Row: 5
  • Village: 3
  • Town: 1
  • City: 1
  • R41 Lot Deed Raffle Tickets: This will be the Ninth Lot Deed Raffle. As always, Raffle tickets can be purchased with in game gold. As with R40 each person can only win a single deed of each type (maximum of one place anywhere and one POT). The drawing and winners will be in R42.
  • Place Anywhere Deeds (10):
  • Row: 5
  • Village: 3
  • Town: 1
  • City: 1
  • Player Owned Town Deeds (10):
  • Row: 5
  • Village: 3
  • Town: 1
  • City: 1
  • New and Updated Dynamic POTs:
  • Beregost: Upgraded to Hamlet. Interconnections (with Greenfall, Kingswood, and Littlecreek).
  • Constitutio Chaos: Renamed (formerly Verat Chaos). Changed nested interconnection to within Verat Chaos.
  • Darkshire Hills: Ownership changed.
  • Flowing Waters Forest: Renamed (formerly Specto Mori). Converted to Forest 02. Ownership changed. Changed location. Interconnections (removed Aerie; added Brekken Bay and Falling Waters Fortress).
  • Grumpie Hermit's Hide-a-way: Converted to Swamp Island 01a. Interconnection (with Flowing Waters Forest).
  • Lake Cusabo: Renamed (formerly Dooms Den). Converted to Mountains 01. Ownership changed. Upgraded to City. Changed location.
  • Moonglade: Upgraded to Metropolis.
  • Novia Market: Upgraded to Crossroads Village. Changed location (minor).
  • Oracle Oasis: Upgraded to Village.
  • Refugees Hideout: Converted to Mountains 01. Upgraded to Crossroads Village.
  • Reverie: Upgraded to Village.
  • Sequanna's Peace: Renamed (formerly Mount Nylorac). Converted to Desert 01c. Ownership changed. Interconnections (changed nested interconnection to within Granite Gardens; added Serenite and Isle of Mists).
  • Serenity Isle: Converted to Swamp Island 01a. Rotated to Left.
  • Steubenshire: Renamed (formerly Nido dell'Aquila). Converted to Mountains 01. Ownership changed. Interconnections (changed nested interconnection to within Verat Chaos; removed Central Brittany, Brittany Alleys, and Elad's Lighthouse).
  • Verat Chaos: Renamed (formerly Praga). Ownership changed.
  • Whyte Roc: Changed location. Upgraded to City. Interconnections (with Taenby Landing and Blue Rose Isle).
R41Map of Novia POT.jpg
  • Combat and Game Balance: We will continue our polish pass on all the visual effects related to combat as well as make major improvements to the new user experience with combat.
  • New Moon Magic Spells: Moon magic was very unbalanced compared to the other magic schools because it had no damage spells or spells that directly assisted with combat beyond mesmerization. These two new spells greatly increase the effectiveness of Moon magic.
  • Fireflies: Tier 2 spell. Surrounds target with fireflies making target easier to hit and increasing crit chance. Also clear way to mark designated target for large group combats.
Fireflies icon.png
  • Meteor Shower: Ground target spell, cast it and it summons an AOE with little meteors falling.
Meteor Shower icon.png
  • Tamed Creatures Balance: Taming has needed some attention for some time now, and we spent Release 41 first analysing the issues, and then implementing some needed changes to make taming more balanced and useful. The goal was to increase their combat survivability and DPS output but at the cost of slightly more maintenance.
  • Increased Damage Resistance: All creatures gain damage resistance to match their wild counterparts.
  • Increased Speed: Fixed movement rate and made them match the creature type. Wolves are fast, bears moderate, spiders still slowest. This makes all movement speeds all at least 50% faster than what they were previously.
  • Increased Strength: All creatures gain at least 20 base strength. This increases both damage and hit points.
  • Reduced Health Regen: Out of combat health regen reduced to combat level health regen.
  • Taming on Utility Bar: All taming skills have been made usable from the utility bar vs combat bar.
  • Taming Unlearn Credit: Added all tame skills to the "100% unlearn list" for R41. Those that still do not approve of Taming after these improvements to it will have the option to reclaim almost all the experience they spent on it.
  • Creature and Environment Effects Balance:
  • Body Slam: Fixed bug where this skill was ignoring Roots cast by NPCs.
  • Cabalist Effects: Fixed all Cabalist effects to not affect dead players.
  • Confusion Fields: Fixed confusion fields to not affect dead players.
  • Daemon in Solania Catacombs: Added a spawn delay for Daemon in the catacombs to discourage farming.
  • Damage Resistance/Avoidance/Parry: Gave all creatures some level of Damage Resistance, Avoidance, and Parry. Major side effects:
  • All melee types will be slightly less effective. High hit, low damage effects (Double shot, rapid shot, multishot, etc) will suffer the most BUT those were designed with this in mind.
  • Warrior types will get some, mages probably none which will also help differentiate them more. Best way to deal with casters will be melee, best way to deal with warriors will be magic.
  • Elemental's Resistances: We did a major pass on elemental resistances because they were only taking 50% of damage from all melee. We removed that and replaced it with more standard damage resistance, avoidance, and dodge based on type.
  • Ghosts: Now much more resistant to melee/physical damage. And Confusion no longer works on them.
  • Hit Points: Balance pass on melee creature hit points to bring them down to a more reasonable value since they will now take less damage.
  • Tier 8+ Elven Warrior: Updated the top tier warrior elf to make him more challenging. Currently only found as a mini boss type in the dog room shooting gallery in The Rise.
  • Bludgeon Balance: Major focus on balancing Bludgeoning to make it more effective, especially versus Blades.
  • Break Weapon: Increased the amount of damage reduction caused by Break Weapon skill, increased the duration, and made it so it can stack up to 3 times.
  • Break Armor: Debuff power decreased from 1+skillLevel/25 to 1+skillLevel/50 but duration tripled and changed to stack up to 3 times. GM in the skill can now decrease a target’s Damage Resist by 9 (or more with Break Armor buff gear) for 30 seconds vs old version of 5 for 10 seconds.
  • Ground Pound: Damage changed from meleedamage + (2 to 10) to meleedamage*1.4, base focus increased from 16 to 22, and cast time changed from 1.5 to 2 seconds. General idea being to make high tier runes bigger, more powerful Damage multiplier will scale much better at high levels.
  • Stun Duration: Stun duration on crushing blow and knock back doubled and chance to stun cut in half. Fewer stuns means they are less likely to be resisted so even though this seems bad or neutral, this is actually better in actual practice.
  • Summoned Creatures Balance: Summoned Creatures were only really useful at low levels because they did not level with the player. Now we have made it so they increase their level based on the caster's skill and level using the formula: (skillLevel) + ((adventurerLevel/2)/4). So if you're level 80 and have an 80 in summon fire elemental skill, instead of your fire elemental being level 10 as in previous releases, it will be 10+(80+(80/2))/4 = 10 + (30) = level 40 fire elemental and have about 3-4X hps and a better hit chance.
  • Skills Balance and Bug Fixes:
  • Acrobatics: This passive Light Armor skill that added Damage Resistance now instead adds a full time dodge chance. For the duration of R41, players who choose to unlearn Acrobatics will regain 100% of the experience spent on it back to their pool.
  • Blue Blooded: This innate is now in line with Fireproof and Well Grounded innates at 0.25 points of resistance per point. Added Blue Blooded to the 100% experience reclaim on untraining for R41.
  • Confusion: This now requires a successful cast to apply experience.
  • Cover: Completed a survey of 400+ skills to make sure they were accurately set to work with cover (many were not!). Also fixed the getting hit by a spell AFTER the target has moved behind a wall issue.
  • All appropriate spells and skills should now be blocked correctly when the target goes behind a wall or gains cover during casting time. Yes, this means that you should be able to more accurately jump behind pillars to avoid firebolts, etc
  • Many skills/spells were set wrong for damage flags so they were not receiving cover bonus, now fixed. (Seriously, too many to list)
  • Many skills had flags corrected to be properly blocked, parried, dodged. The most noticeable was Double Thrust first attack could be blocked, dodged or parried but the second attack was couldn't be defended against. Lots others fixed as well.
  • Death Magic: After investigating crafting bonuses and how they were applied specifically for Death magic we found a very bad math bug:
  • Bonus for near death was being applied like this: bonus = 1.0 + percentDead + nearDeathPowerBonus
    BUT should have been this: bonus = 1.0 + (percentDead *(1+ nearDeathPowerBonus))
    That means that the near death power bonus from gear was being applied to all death magic all the time before. So if you had a piece with a 20% near death bonus, it was really a 20% to all death magic all the time.
    This is now fixed so it only applies when you are actually near death, not all the time.
    We looked over the numbers and we believe that the death magic gear bonuses are still too high. It is really the only magic school that gets straight up damage bonuses and it really doesn't need them.
    Going to go with just those two changes to death magic for R41 and see if that gets things under control a little bit. If not, we will reexamine it again in R42.
  • Decay: Maximum skill decay that can be accumulated has been raised from 12 hours to 24 hours.
  • Deck Switching with Coconuts: This is now possible
  • DOTs and Elevation: Height differences should no longer impact damage calculations for DOT effects.
  • Douse: Fixed tooltip for Douse to only show the newer value for the first resistance.
  • Evasion: Duration increased to be more in line with other short duration defensive skills.
  • Fortify Defense: This skill is now fixed! It was actually working before but only vs very limited category of attacks. Now it should work if within 1-2 seconds of being critically hit by any attack not flagged as a magic type.
  • Glyph Shuffling Bug: Fixed Bug where excess skill glyphs were not being reshuffled into the deck when creating Combos.
  • Hamstring Combo: Damage now scales based on skill levels. This makes this combo much more powerful (as it should be).
  • Ice Field: Updated this Water spell to be a persistent effect in an area as it should have been all along. This means you cast it on a spot, it creates an ice field and entering that field will slow you down even if you weren't in that area when it was cast.
  • Ignite Weapon: Fixed the bug where VFX were persisting after the buff expired.
  • Invulnerability: The effect you have on you after resurrecting or first appearing in a scene now properly protects from other effects besides direct damage like Knockdown.
  • Opportunity Strike: This skill is now much improved. The window for use after dodge is increased and damage on bonus hit raised from 1.25X base to 2X base and still bypasses armor.
  • Pick Pocket: Changed Pick Pockets to be player only until we have a system in place that feels meaningful. Right now it just gives you a virtue hit and lets you do it while they stare at you.
  • Poison: Added new shared stat for Poison Effectiveness that makes poison more powerful. Updated the poison effects to use the bonus. All but Chaos Poison use it on both debuffs and damage. Daggers, short blades, and 1-handed polearms are now more effective with poison.
  • Recall: Fixed bug where combat was not interrupting Recall.
  • Resurrection: Fixed bug that would block players from being resurrected if they were regenerating health at the exact moment of death.
  • Reveal Hidden: Now works for all players in the area, not just the caster.
  • Riposte: Fixed tooltip typo. Also will now only train and give defensive bonus when the attack hits something. Additionally, Riposte was only giving defensive bonus to the first attack! That has been changed to all attacks for the duration of the skill. This skill will likely get some real love soon to make it more compelling.
  • Shield of Air: Fixed bug where it would actually get worse when stacked
  • Shield of Crystal: This spell can no longer be cast on Pets. Added Shield of Crystal to the 100% experience reclaim on untrain list.
  • Stillness Buff: Damage on the player now clears the stillness buff so mages can't stand toe to toe in combat and get bonuses.
  • Tabula Rasa: Fixed this spell so that it now properly wipes the target’s deck, not the caster’s deck.
  • Weapon Balance and Bug Fixes:
  • Caltrops: The slowing effect on these has been increased to 50% slow effect and they now do damage.
  • Explosive Potions: These can now be placed on the Utility Bar.
  • Gear Decay: Increased the rate at which things get damaged by 25%. We will probably keep creeping this value up as currently both from testing and player reports, stuff never needs replacing. We also will continue to evaluate armor vs weapon break rates which currently feel a bit off.
  • Knight Marshal Helm: Fixed Knight Marshal's Winged Helm to not break set bonuses.
  • Maximum Critical: Added a max crit stat to weapon archetypes. Set to current value of 2 for all weapons but now at 2.5 for Polearms and Crossbows. This was added for Crossbows because unlike bows, they do not get a strength bonus of any sort.
  • Polearms: Their critical damage multiplier is now 2.5x (vs 2x).
  • Artifacts:
  • Gaia's Heart: Fixed Gaia's Heart so it can be used in either hand.
  • Instrument Artifacts: Fixed all artifact instruments to be easier to use. They were only attempting to recast 1 time every 20 seconds and if you weren't busy with a note right at that moment it waited another 20 seconds to recast. Not it will check every 5 seconds and the buff will last 30 seconds. NOTE: Many of these do not and will not help the user. For instance, the fleet flute and stealth instrument do nothing for the guy playing them!
  • New Artifacts: Added 7 new artifacts to the game including a new type of buff to support one of them and new effects for new weapons.
  • Torch of Jerik: Added new effects to Torch of Jerik.
  • Character: The Titan Grannus will get his own unique art for the first time. Wounded variations of our guards and soldiers will appear in game. We will also be polishing the medieval peasants.
  • Titan Grannus: Ruler of the Norgard people, Titan Grannus, is one of the pivotal characters you will encounter along the Path of Courage. He wears Viking inspired royal armor with the yellow highlights thought to keep Kobolds at bay. SPOILER: We actually had to make two versions of Grannus so that we could show the corrupted version and the revitalized version of him.
Grannus-1.png
  • Cabalist VFX: The dark energies powering the Obsidian Cabalists pulse through and around them making them even more sinister than they were before.
  • Male Commoner Polish: We created a new custom head and face for the male commoner along with several variants.
  • Wearable Backpacks: Backpacks can now be worn in the back slot like cloaks, wings, etc. For now there is the plain Backpack which is craftable in-game and the Ornate Backpack (originally created for the Wealthy Merchant NPC) which can be purchased in the Add-On Store. These can also be placed as decorations and used as containers.
Sota ornate backpack.jpg
  • New Weapons:
  • Elven Woodwind Short Bow (2-handed Bow): Top Tier Elven Archers
  • Broad Hand Axe (1-handed Axe): Low to Mid tiered Barbarians
  • Double Axe (1-handed Axe): Low to Mid tiered Barbarians
  • Hafted Axe (1-handed Axe): Low to Mid tiered Barbarians
  • Kobold Slag Sword (1-handed Sword): Mid tiered Kobolds
  • Flamberge (2-handed Sword): High tiered Humanoids
  • Vile Two-handed Sword (2-handed Sword): High tiered Humanoids
  • Walking Stick (2-handed Staff): Low tiered Mages
  • Ornate Vile Glaive (2-handed Polearm): Obsidian Bundle Exclusive
  • Ornate Glaive (2-handed Polearm): Add On Store
  • Ornate Satyr Bardiche (2-handed Polearm): Add On Store
Sota ornate satyr bardiche.jpg
  • Spring Telethon 2017 Weapons: During our Spring Telethon 2017 these were the stretch goals for hitting $80K (Leaf Shield & Spear) and $130K (Thorn Bow & Sword). As always anyone who spent $5 or more during the telethon will be receiving these in Release 41. These are the first four that have been built (the other Thorn weapons will be worked on and delivered in Release 42):
Thorn Bow.jpg
  • Leaf Shield
  • Leaf Spear
  • Thorn Bow
  • Thorn Sword
  • New Cloaks:
  • Darkstarr Fur Collared Cloak: This new fur collared version of the Darkstarr cloak also features the health hiding effect once only available in the Lord British Cloak. This can be purchased in the Add On Store.
  • Lord British Fur Collared Cloak: This fur collared version of the Lord British cloak has a different color scheme and also features the health hiding effect. This can be purchased in the Add On Store.
  • Fur Collared Sigil Cloaks: These 3 cloaks feature the Crafting, Magic, and Combat Sigils on fur collared and trimmed cloaks with a different color scheme than the original Sigil Cloaks. These can be purchased in the Add On Store.
Sota magic sigil cloak.jpg
  • Butterfly Masks: The Butterfly mask we first introduced during the Spring Telethon now comes in Black and White versions in the Add On Store.
  • Emotes: We have added quite a few new emotes that can be learned from various NPCs in the game.
  • /scare: Use this emote to frighten your friends! SPOILER: A "Forgetful Ghost" in a haunted house in the Solace Bridge Outskirts will teach this emote to players. NOTE: this was formerly known as /boo but that is now used for jeering (see below).
  • /boo: Use this emote to express your displeasure at the next performance you attend! SPOILER: Speak to Kitra, a pilgrim in Etceter, about her love of fauns, learn how to jeer at people when they do something you do not like. NOTE: The name for this emote was formerly used for the emote /scare (see above).
  • /timerift: Impress everyone at the next dance party with this amazing sequence of moves! SPOILER: Eugena, a new NPC added to the non-tutorial version of Solace Bridge, will teach this dance to players.
  • /lighthopak & /heavyhopak: Outlanders from Ukraine brought this dance to Novia and have been stunning partygoers with it. SPOILER: Geof, the refugee in Soltown very excited about iron blades, will teach this unique dance.
  • /waltzlead & /waltzfollow: These stately dances are a graceful statement at any noble gathering. Getting the timing right can be a challenge, just like in real life! SPOILER: Damai in Ardoris will teach.
  • /tiphat: If you want to show your respect to others when greeting them then you must obtain this emote! SPOILER: Kardan Marbane in the Ardoris tavern will provide.
  • /beg: For those times when you have to get on your knees and plead for mercy you will wish you had this! SPOILER: Ellery in Ardoris will show you how.
  • /huzzah: When a simple cheer is not enough you need a hearty “Huzzah!” SPOILER: Smelly Bob in Spite can provide.
  • Mining emote for NPCs: Added the ability for NPCs to use the mining animation.
  • Face Selected Target: Players will now face the selected target when using emotes like /bow and /point
  • /toast: You can once again get drunk from using the /toast emote. NOTE: For now this is the only way to get drunk and it just produces a visual distortion effect. It also does not matter what you have equipped. Eventually getting drunk will be tied to alcohol consumption and certain potions and will include other effects like the movement input swapping of the Confusion spell as well as puking.
  • Mallard Ducks: This version of duck is our wild variant and can be found scattered around Novia.
  • Light Spell: The visual effects for the Sun Magic spell Light have been completely redone.
  • Polished Torch and 1 Handed Weapon Hold: There was a bug in the hold pose for torches and 1 Handed Weapons that made the character look really awkward. These have been fixed.
  • Double Animations Bug: Fixed bug that was causing some animations to play twice (examples: Fishing, casting Light Spell, Opening Chests, etc.)
  • Musical Instrument Sync Issues: Fixed bug where sheet music sync would break after the first song was played.
  • Wounded Soldiers and Female Peasant Polish Delayed: We chose to spend more time working on Grannus and The Oracle and so we are pushing these two items to Release 42.
  • Contextual Help: A contextual help system will come online that allows players to hover over content (interface elements, items, etc.) in the game and get information about it.
  • Information Button: We have added an information button “?” to many of our interfaces that when clicked on brings up a window containing more information about that interface and/or the system that interface interacts with. This text often replaces the pop-up tutorial text (and often uses that same text).
  • “Just in Time” Text: Added short explanatory text to interfaces where possible to merchant, vendor, bank, combat bar, utility bar, and trade windows. Example: “Drag items here” when the trade window is empty.
  • Vendor Interface Tooltips:
  • Buy: "Buy items listed for sale by other players."
  • Sell: "Fulfill purchase orders created by other players."
  • Manage Inventory: "Add or remove items that you would like to sell."
  • Manage Orders: "Create or remove purchase orders for items that you would like to purchase."
  • Crafting: More recipes and more patterns in gear that is dropped from enemies.
  • Reshaping & Patterns for Decorations: Previously Patterns and Reshaping could only be used on gear (weapons, armor, clothing, etc.) but now the system has been expanded so that it functions on other items including decorations.
  • Book Cover Patterns: The first decorative item to use patterns in the game will be books. Using the Tailoring station you will now be able to change the Book Cover to over 60 different Custom Book Covers. Player books can also now be salvaged for materials and patterns.
  • New In-Game Weapon Patterns:
  • Kobold Electric Axe (1-handed Bludgeon)
  • Kobold Electric Great Axe (2-handed Bludgeon)
  • Elven Woodwind Short Bow (2-handed Bow)
  • Broad Hand Axe (1-handed Bludgeon)
  • Double Axe (1-handed Bludgeon)
  • Hafted Axe (1-handed Bludgeon)
  • Kobold Slag Sword (1-handed Sword)
  • Flamberge (2-handed Sword)
  • Vile Two-handed Sword (2-handed Sword)
  • Walking Stick (2-handed Staff)
  • New Add On, Bundle, and Pledge Weapon Patterns:
Sota ornate glaive pattern.jpg
  • Founder Crossbow (Crossbow)
  • Royal Founder Crossbow (Crossbow)
  • Ornate Vile Glaive (2-handed Polearm)
  • Ornate Glaive (2-handed Polearm)
  • Ornate Satyr Bardiche (2-handed Polearm)
  • New Recipes:
  • Crossbow: Crossbows are the third ranged weapon that can be crafted (in addition to the Short Bow and Long Bow). Finally something to put that Vile Crossbow pattern on!
  • Boss Creature Trophy Heads: There are now trophy head recipes for 3 of our bosses: Dragon, Phoenix, and Troll.
  • Rustic Wood & Leather Furniture: Rough wooden logs with bark still on them and stitched leather cushions
  • Canvas Upholstered Furniture: This new furniture suite consists of 7 different pieces:
  • Chair
  • Armchair
  • Barrel Chair
  • Barrel Sofa
  • Loveseat
  • Wooden Trimmed Loveseat
  • Long Couch
  • Harpsichord: Lord British’s favorite musical instrument is craftable in the game and even this version is quite fancy!
  • Norgard Chairs: These two heavy wooden chairs are built in the Viking inspired Norgard style.
  • Heavy Rustic Chair: A sturdy wooden chair
  • Stag Hat: Much like the Bear and Wolf hats this hat is made from the head of a Stag and sports the characteristic antlers of that beast.
  • Obsidian Forge: We have doubled the Health and Focus drain at the Obsidian Forge in Hilt Fortress to better balance the benefits associated with Obsidian gear.
  • Warlock Chain Bug: Fixed the Warlock chain recipes so they don’t destroy items.
  • Rose Polish: The colors are now much brighter on the rose blooms.
  • Masterworking Wands: Now skills up Bludgeon Masterworking in Carpentry.
  • Merchant Shirt: Now properly classified as Cloth Armor.
  • Localization: Translation into multiple languages has been restarted on the Zanata platform.
  • Russian Language (Cyrillic) Support: Russian is now an officially supported language including Cyrillic fonts.
  • Localization Rewards: As part of our resumed Localization effort, we will begin rewarding volunteers with Gold Crowns and the titles of "Scribe" and "Royal Scrivener". See the linked post for details on how to earn the rewards. For more information about joining our volunteer localization team, click here.
  • User Interface Polish:
  • Training Window: Now only shows the skills you can learn from that trainer instead of showing all skills.
  • “Newly Claimed” Rewards in Bank: Newly claimed rewards now appear in green text in your bank.
  • SotAMap Player Position: Fixed player direction arrow bug so it now updates direction properly in real time.
  • SotAMap & Convos: We now properly hide SotAMap when in conversations with NPCs as we do all other windows.
  • Basement Interface: "Cancel" and "Accept" buttons are now reversed.
  • Vendor Item Location UI: Players can now view a list of all items that they have listed for sale on player-owned Vendors throughout New Britannia. This is accessible via the cog context menu button in the bank interface, and should help players locate items that may have moved via the Property Manager. Items in the list may be sent to the local bank in order to easily retrieve items that may be placed on a vendor that is currently in storage.
  • Play Mode Selection (Offline, Friends, Open): This is now accessible from the Options Menu, allowing players to switch modes from inside the game without having to log completely out. Before this mode change takes effect, the player must wait 20 seconds, followed by an automatic reload of the current scene.
  • Focus Bars: These are now only visible if other players are in your party.

So, now that it is clear what you can expect, we should also be as clear about what you should NOT expect:

  • Stability: Stability while better with Unity 5.5 still has issues on systems with minimum memory.
  • Performance: We plan to make steady improvements each release until the game is running smoothly on minimum spec machines in big cities. However, we only made a little time in Release 41 for any significant performance improvements, so performance remains relatively unchanged since last release.
  • Game Loop: Release 41 is a further iteration on our game loop, but is still missing a few key components and balance. Expect this to expand with each subsequent release.
  • Visual Quality: Efforts to improve visual quality are ongoing. We will continue to iterate on these until we have highly competitive visuals.
  • Pledge Rewards: Pledge Rewards that have been built and have tech to support them are in the game; all other rewards are awaiting either content creation or tech support. You can find an updated list of these items in the known issues.
  • Delayed Content and Features: As mentioned above, some features scheduled for this release did not make it (and in each case we explained why). In some cases items from previous releases move into the next release but often they will move further out, either into the next quarter, or even farther. About once per year (around mid-year) we put out a Road Map that details all content built to date and all remaining content.

Here are links to instructions and known issues. Thank you again for your continued support. This is truly the most amazing community we have ever worked with, and we are proud to be on this journey with you.

Sincerely,
Starr Long[2]

Additional Information[edit]

See Also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. Darkstarr, Q2 2017 Schedule Update
  2. Darkstarr, Release 41 Instructions

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