Have you been keeping up with Pantheon's Development???
Hello there -- you're getting this email because, once, long ago, you supported the Pantheon Kickstarter. As you know, we failed to reach our financial goal -- quite frankly we began the campaign too early and with not enough to show. But let me tell you, so much has changed since then! If you've been keeping up with the game you're probably well aware of our progress. But if you haven't checked in on us lately, I really encourage you to click on the images in this update and re-acquaint yourself with one of the most exciting and unique MMOs currently in development.
Start up companies are hard and we, like many, had a bit of a rocky start. But through persistence, stubbornness, and all of the support so many of you gave us via encouraging emails, supportive posts, and more, we tenaciously kept the ball rolling, continued developing the game, and have grown the team to over 15 developers! While the initial funding goal wasn't met, over the last couple of years we've brought in much more than that first goal from both people pledging money on our site as well as seed funding. We now have a very playable and fun game -- in fact, if you haven't already, please click below and check out our latest screenshots in 4k resolution and further below to view the latest live stream of the game -- I think you'll be pleasantly surprised with how much we've been able to accomplish and showcase -- a wide variety of screenshots and almost 3 hours worth of live video!
The following screenshot is from the dungeon called Amberfaet. When you explore it, you'll want to come prepared. Frigid atmosphere will require you to collect and use situational gear -- in this case, armor that specifically protects you from the bitter cold. As you adventure further in you'll discover you need even more tools at your disposal -- in order to reach the top of the dungeon you'll have to climb vertical faces. That means being prepared with both a healthy climbing skill as well as items necessary for your accent. Other dungeons have areas of complete darkness, or rooms that are silenced requiring your casters to gesture their spells instead of voicing them. Sections of these dangerous locations could be void of air or deep underwater -- another challenge to overcome. In Pantheon you'll need to collect a variety of magical items which means moving around the world and being rewarded for exploring. The same is true for the more powerful spells and abilities -- you may need to find a wise sage or lonely hermit in the depths of a dungeon or at the top of a frightening tower and learn a specific ability from them. In Pantheon there is rarely a situation where at a certain level there is always one weapon or one piece of armor that is the best; rather you'll need to come prepared based on where you want to go, who you are with, and what items and tactics might be necessary in order to defeat that rare spawn in the next room.
Our next big goal is to bring in funding allowing us to build our environment artist and world building teams. The game itself is coming along quite nicely but we need additional help building the landscapes, dungeons, and incredible variety that will become Pantheon's epic world. While we've had a playable and fun core MMO for months and are now interweaving new features and new mechanics into the experience, content is always king in a compelling MMO. The more NPCs, quests, areas to explore, the better. And we'll keep building that content throughout alpha and beta, into launch, and then via expansions available after launch. What kind of content is also very important: NPC AI is turning out to be very compelling, varied, and advanced -- no more simply zerging your way through content or power leveling by doing the same thing over and over again. Our Event system, Progeny system, weather that actually changes gameplay, and our Perception system are quite unique. In Pantheon we take the E in PvE and make it more than simply and endlessly fighting NPCs -- you truly engage the world... and be careful -- the world will actively engage you! Want more information and details? Recently we updated our FAQ and it's quite comprehensive, with questions from our community answered by the team. Check it out:
But what about the real game? How far along are you guys -- is there more than pretty pictures? Absolutely! We recently did a twitch stream showcasing almost 3 hours of gameplay. Check out the different classes and environments -- I think you'll be impressed by what you see. We had two groups in-game from all over the real world connecting to our cloud servers, We show off several of the classes, all sorts of NPCs, and a variety of very different and distinct environments. The response has been overwhelmingly positive and while it's a long video to watch, I highly recommend checking it out -- more than 100,000 people already have!
In addition to our site's forums and monthly newsletters, you'll see us developers posting on various sites like MMORPG.com and others. We have our own AMA page, our Wiki is coming together, and we are very active on Facebook where we constantly interact with the community, pose questions, take polls, and most importantly listen to the gamers who are interested in, even dedicated to, how Pantheon turns out at launch and beyond. And as we head into pre-alpha testing later this year, followed by alpha and then beta, the community and what they like and are looking for will become more and more involved and have more and more influence on the game's development process. While many MMOs are played for weeks, maybe a month, Pantheon is being designed as a virtual home, a sticky game with content crafted to entertain you for months and years! In fact, the first MMO I worked on came out in 1999 and is still online and active.
You are also invited and encouraged to dig deeper into our web site where you'll find the game design tenets we are loyally committed to, developer diaries, a ton of lore and backstory behind the game's world, and much more. Feel free to read our forums or subscribe so that you can interact directly with both the community and development team. We are making this game for you, the MMO player who enjoys working together as a team and relying on different classes to fulfill different roles. So many MMO fans have felt orphaned for years with the only MMOs available to play being those focused on both easy and single player oriented gameplay -- you may see other players running about but rarely a need to truly interact with them, building true and lasting friendships. Not so in Pantheon -- most of the time you'll not only want companions, other players whom you trust, but you'll need them. What's more, you'll experience a vast, open world that feels much more like a sandbox than a themepark. Most items are tradable and Pantheon will have a vibrant player-driven economy. Instances will rarely if ever be used and there will never be cash-shops allowing players with real-life money to purchase items and 'pay to win' -- in Pantheon it's your skill and dedication that will result in earning meaningful, rare and exotic items.
Our goal is not to create a game that appeals to everyone all of the time, a dumbed down experience that you play maybe a month (if that) and then move on. If you played the earlier MMOs you'll understand what I'm talking about. But if you didn't and are part of the younger group of players who enjoy a deep challenge like Dark Souls, or working together cooperatively against the world like in Call of Duty, or against other players in MOBAs, we think you'll love playing together in a truly persistent world. Log in and easily find and group with your friends, advance your character, his or her skills and abilities, and then later log off. Play a couple of hours or all night, but when you return the next day or the next week your achievements will still be there, your experience points, level, items, mounts and more -- Pantheon is a true virtual world, filled with thousands of other people, and your accomplishments not only matter, but they stay with you throughout the long life of your character.
Of this we are very proud, encouraged, and definitely validated: MMORPG.com recently did a poll, asking people what MMO they were most looking forward to -- check out the results as they speak for themselves:
Anyway, enough said -- again, for those of you who may not have looked into the game for some time, please take a moment to do so -- I think you'll be impressed. Get on the forums, whether our own, or those at MMORPG.com and elsewhere, and give us your impressions, ask questions, and interact with the dev team. Another twitch stream is coming your way in just a few months. More screenshots and details about the game are consistently revealed. Thank you for your time and we look forward to you becoming part of the growing Pantheon community!
CCO, Visionary Realms, Inc.
Original Producer and Co-Designer, EverQuest.
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