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Lord British returns to his fantasy RPG roots with Shroud of the Avatar, hearkening back to his innovative early work.
Lord British returns to his fantasy RPG roots with Shroud of the Avatar, hearkening back to his innovative early work.
Lord British returns to his fantasy RPG roots with Shroud of the Avatar, hearkening back to his innovative early work.
22,322 backers pledged $1,919,275 to help bring this project to life.

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Release 44 Instructions

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Greetings Avatars,         

Thank you for being a loyal backer and follower of Shroud of the Avatar. Release 44 access for all Early Access backers begins this Thursday, July 27, at 10:30 AM US Central Daylight Time (15:30 UTC).

 

Forsaken Virtues Story Complete: We have now completed the Path of the Oracle with the introduction of the Destiny Pool, Confluence Chamber, and the final audience with the Oracle. This means that players can now play through the entire Episode 1 story from beginning to end including all three paths of virtue: Truth, Love, and Courage. In Release 45 we will add the Outskirts scene for the Path of Courage (Highvale Outskirts), some additional side quests along the Truth and Courage paths, some visual polish, and of course general bug fixes. That is when we will also provide the story reset token so that players can start the story over while preserving their character.

 

Dread Artifacts and the Shroud of the Avatar (SPOILERS): As players complete all four paths, they will gain possession of four powerful artifacts. These include the Shroud of the Avatar as well as the three Dread Artifacts: the Bone Steel Crown, the Heart of Sorrows, and the Scepter of Dread. The Dread Artifacts each grant a unique and powerful spell that allows the Avatar to wield great power but over time will require great sacrifices (see details below). The Shroud of the Avatar will visually display the Avatar’s current state of virtue but rumors abound that the Shroud conveys other powers as well…

 

 New Scenes & Scene Polish: A huge amount of work went into worldbuilding and scene polish this release. We rebuilt the final Colossus map, Grannus Colossus. This, along with the Destiny Pool inside the Confluence Chamber, completes the Path of the Oracle. The Hallowed Plains was also rebuilt this release and features an ancient haunted battlefield that is being resettled by Kobolds. Three of the towns along the Path of Truth (Aerie, Jaanaford, and Vertas) were polished to better represent that path. Blood River Outskirts was also polished significantly. Additionally, guards in many scenes will now fine players who are caught stealing.

 

 Rent: Property Owners can now add an additional “Tenant” permission for users of their lot. This permission can be added for any permission level from Guest through Co-Owner, and allows users to securely place items on a lot without fear of losing them. Items placed as a Tenant will be owned by that Tenant and only they may pick them back up off the lot. If a Tenant loses permission for any reason, or the lot contents are sent to the bank due to a house deed change, those items will go back to the Tenant’s bank. Additionally, we have added the ability for permissions to be set on individual doors so that renting can be done room per room (or the entire building).

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. Please also see the complete Instructions and Release Notes on the main website. 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.

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  
aka Darkstarr  
Executive Producer

Release 43 Instructions

11 likes

Greetings Avatars,     

Thank you for being a loyal backer and follower of Shroud of the Avatar. Release 43 access for all Early Access backers begins this Thursday, June 29, at 10:30 AM US Central Daylight Time (15:30 UTC).  

Release 43 contains both a huge amount of new content and a major improvement in performance that will generally improve everything about playing the game (and I do not exaggerate). Framerates have been improved in every scene, doubled in some! This really will make playing the game feel so much better in every way. Additionally, one of our biggest and most complicated scenes ever, Blood River Outskirts, goes live this release. Three scenes got completely rebuilt and four more scenes got major polish passes. Finally, we are expanding the mail system to allow player-to-player mail as well as expanding and balancing the Offline Economy!  

On top of all this new content, we also launched our SeedInvest Crowd Equity campaign to raise funds for our commercial launch later this year. Speaking of later this year… stay tuned tomorrow for our Q3 Schedule Update to find out what we will be working on for the next three releases!  

 

Performance: The programming team spent three weeks focusing most of their efforts on improving performance. We looked at every aspect of how we run the game to find everything that could be changed to improve performance. We are happy to report that we made significant progress! Frame rate is getting very close to where we want it to be, and is now almost double where it was previously (our long term goal is 30 fps on minimum spec. computers playing in Ardoris). Load times are also better, but there is still more work to be done.  

Story: The Path of the Oracle continues to expand greatly with two more Colossus scenes: Sequanna Colossus & Boreas Colossus. We have also improved the Path of Truth by adding Blood River Outskirts, which is the zone that new users are sent to directly after Blood River Massacre. This scene makes extensive use of the Factions system introduced in Release 42. We are also now directing players to move back and forth between the three paths so that their level stays on pace with the challenge of each path. Additionally, several scenes were rebuilt, polished or expanded, including Celestis, Libris Ruins, Graff Gem Mines, Isle of Storms, and Crypt of the Avatar.  

 

Offline Economy: Merchants in Offline Mode now have a different “Buy Price” for player-crafted items than merchants in Online Mode. This allows players to sell crafted goods for a profit to NPC merchants in Offline Mode. Additionally, Merchants in offline mode now have an additional stock list that will eventually include all items from the Add-On Store, Pledges, Bundles, etc. In Release 43 many of those items are now listed for sale and more will be added over time.

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. Please see the complete Instructions and Release Notes on the main website.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.  

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
aka Darkstarr
Executive Producer

Release 42 Instructions

17 likes

Greetings Avatars, 

Please read this entire message, as well as the linked Instructions and Known Issues. Join the discussion of this update in the forums.

Thank you for being a loyal backer and follower of Shroud of the Avatar. Release 42 access for all Early Access backers begins this Thursday, May 25, at 10:30 AM US Central Daylight Time (15:30 UTC).

Release 42 (R42) is another significant step forward in progress with a staggering amount of new content as well as a ton of balance and polish. The Path of the Oracle is finally revealed, along with the Oracle herself, starter scenes have seen an amazing amount of polish, more gear can be placed as decorations, Mail is seeing its first iteration, many weapon decorations are now able to be placed on both walls and floors, combat got lots of balancing including additional functionality for Locked Decks and adjustments to Experience Decay, and enemies have been beefed up with new abilities and smarter behaviors! 

 

The Path of the Oracle: For intrepid Avatars that have succeeded in the Paths of Love, Truth, and Courage, an audience can be sought with the Oracle herself. What awaits as you approach her throne in the heart of Brittany? R42 will set the Avatar upon the final path to untangle the meaning of the Dire Prophecies and discover the Avatar’s purpose in New Britannia.

 

Starting Scene Polish: We have continued to focus on steady improvements to the new user experience by polishing the three primary starter scenes: Battle of Solace Bridge, Blood River Massacre, and Battle of Highvale. Players exploring these scenes for the first time will experience significant improvements to quest flow, task management, NPC behaviors, Points of Interest, and enemy encounters.

 

Decoration Additions and Improvements: We have expanded the list of available decorations this release to include nearly 120 pieces of gear that can now be placed as decorations. This includes all Chain, Plate, Bone, Clockwork, and Founder’s Heavy Armor sets as well as many equipable offhand items and miscellaneous cloth gear missed in R41. Additionally, many weapon decorations can now be placed on BOTH walls and floors, rather than just one or the other. We are also introducing Ceiling decorations in the form of chandeliers and hanging light decorations. We are excited to see how players will use this improved flexibility to decorate their homes in a variety of new and interesting ways!

  

Mail: It’s finally here! After countless feature requests, we’re excited to show off the initial iteration of our Mail system. With Release 42, players will be able to receive mail notifications based on vendor transactions. When a vendor item is sold, expired, or removed, players will receive mail that notifies them of the event. The mail will also include the proceeds or refund from the transaction. Mail can be accessed at mailboxes, which are located at all banks throughout New Britannia. Mailboxes can also be crafted and placed at your house. Work is ongoing to eventually allow players to send mail to each other in future iterations. 

Combat Balance: Significant improvements were made to combat systems in R42. Locked Decks now support the successive use of the same skill/spell based on the number of available glyphs determined by skill level. This will be balanced with the addition of a new Locked Deck “Heat” system, which will build up after rapid use of the same skill and cause increased focus consumption. Noteworthy changes have also been made to Experience Decay and Boss Loot tables.

Enemy AI: A lot of work this release has gone into fleshing out enemy AI behaviors, as well as arming enemies with new abilities. Most mages will now have an increased arsenal of spells, including roots, buffs, debuffs, and teleportation. Additionally, enemies will no longer stand idly by as their friends are attacked or killed. Most NPCs will now properly react, panic, and investigate the area of the kill and actively search for the aggressor.

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.  Please see the complete Instructions and Release Notes on the main website.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.

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
aka Darkstarr
Executive Producer

Release 41 Instructions

12 likes

Greetings Avatars, 

Please read this entire message, as well as the linked instructions and known issues.

Thank you for being a loyal backer and follower of Shroud of the Avatar! 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.

 

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?

 

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.

 

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.

 

Decorations: What you can decorate your home with got yet another dramatic expansion this release with over 200 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.

Please see the complete Instructions and Release Notes on the main website.  

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.  

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
aka Darkstarr
Executive Producer

Release 40 Instructions

11 likes

Greetings Avatars, 

Please read this entire message, as well as the linked instructions and known issues.

Thank you for being a loyal backer and follower of Shroud of the Avatar. Release 40 access for all Early Access backers begins this Thursday, March 30, at 10:30 AM US Central Standard Time (15:30 UTC).

Release 40 is full of so many important changes that it is hard to know where to begin! The Obsidian Cabalists are now spreading their vileness throughout New Britannia, weapons can now be placed as decorations, we have shifted more of our focus to improving the new user experience (NUE), there are tons of new patterns (both in-game and out), and we finally upgraded to Unity 5.5 (which should address some major AMD issues).

 

New User Experience (NUE): We are now shifting a large amount of our effort towards improving the New User Experience. For several years, our backers have been providing us with feedback about the NUE. For example, our backers have pointed out that having to open the journal to view their active tasks/quests feels cumbersome, and that we overload the player with too many options at the beginning of the game (too many skills, too many different hotbars, etc.). This feedback has been affirmed by metrics gathered during our recent Free Trial. In R40, we have implemented improvements for both these issues as well as other improvements to the NUE. There is now an on-screen task list, we start players with fewer skills, we now delay introducing the player to some more advanced features until later in the game, and we have begun integrating SotA Map into the game client to aid with navigation.

Unity 5.5: We have finally upgraded to the latest version of Unity. This should result in better overall performance and numerous fixes to longstanding issues including the longstanding AMD incompatibility!

Obsidian Cabalists: These vile beings who follow the Anti-Virtues will now be laying siege to towns throughout Novia, including Player Owned Towns that harbor devotionals to the Virtues! Each Cabalist dons a unique hood artifact bearing the symbol of their anti-virtue, and also wields a unique weapon artifact. These artifacts, along with Cabalist Robes and Cabalist Plate Boots, can be looted from Cabalists if you manage to defeat them. Players can then choose to either wield the Vile artifacts or salvage them for patterns that can be applied to other equipment.

 

Weapon Decorations and New Patterns: In Release 39, we started making equippable items placeable as decorations, using musical instruments as our first test. In R40, we have expanded upon this, and now almost all weapons are placeable in your home as decorations! Additionally, we have added quite a lot of new patterns to the game, including patterns for looted gear such as the Obsidian Cabalist artifacts (Hoods, Weapons, Boots, and Robes), Khopesh, Norgard Axe, and Imperial Heater Shield. We also added patterns to almost all of the Pledge items (Founder armor, Founder weapons, etc.), and we also added a lot of new items to the Add-On Store.

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.

Please see the complete Instructions and Release Notes on the main website.

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.

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
aka Darkstarr
Executive Producer