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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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Link Your Kickstarter Account Now Before Final Player Data Wipe!

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Greetings Avatars,

We are incredibly excited to announce that we have scheduled final lot selection and final wipe of persistent player data, (but not social data such as friends and guilds), for Release 32, July 28, 2016! After R32, we will no longer be wiping the game state (though limited server roll-backs may still be required). Your characters and properties will be persistent from that date forward.

If you have not already done so, please link your Kickstarter Account, so we can ensure that you receive all of your backer rewards as soon as they are ready to roll out!

Have your Kickstarter email address handy:

1) Go to www.kickstarter.com and login.

2) In the upper right-hand corner, click “Me” for a menu drop down.

3) Choose “Profile” under “My Stuff“.

4) Choose “Edit Your Profile” in the upper-right corner .

5) Change to the “Account” tab.

6) Make note of the listed email address.

Link your account on the official website:

1) If you haven't already done so, register an official website account at www.shroudoftheavatar.com.

2) After registering, log in to the website above.

3) Click the Account button at the upper right corner of the screen.

4) If your pledge is not already listed, click the “here” link just above the table.

5) Follow the instructions.

If you still have not received confirmation after checking your Kickstarter email, please submit a ticket to support@portalarium.com. Thanks for linking your account!

Get Your 15% Summer Bonus Now! If you were thinking of purchasing (or upgrading) a pledge or Player Owned Town before they expire, then now’s a great time to do it. Between now and the Summer 2016 Expiration Event, Part 2, we are offering a 15% Bonus on all purchases!

Learn more about the 15% bonus and upcoming Release 32 events!

Persistent Player Data and Lot Selection Event

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Greetings Avatars, 

We are incredibly excited to announce that we have scheduled final lot selection and final wipe of persistent player data, (but not social data such as friends and guilds), for Release 32, July 28, 2016! After R32, we will no longer be wiping the game state (though limited server roll-backs may still be required). Your characters and properties will be persistent from that date forward.

Please understand that Release 32 and final player data wipe is NOT “Launch”!

We will continue to be working to finish the game’s content well past final player data wipe, and while we remain in Early Access. Until then, the game is neither “launched” nor complete. Launch will be when we pull the game out of Early Access and we start marketing / public relation campaigns. We have no plans to do those things in July. We know that this plan has generated a lot of questions, but we firmly believe this is the best possible course of action for the project.

In order to give our backers the opportunity to upgrade their pledges once they’ve experienced the game post-wipe (see Final Wipe and Lot Selection milestone), we have decided to split the upcoming Summer 2016 Expiration Event into Two Parts!

Summer 2016 Expiration Event, Part 1

At 11:59 pm CDT (4:59 UTC) on July 27, 2016, we are expiring the homes and basements from the Ancestor, Edelmann, Knight Marshal, Lord Marshal, Duke, and Lord of the Manor 2 pledges. We are also expiring new Player Owned Towns (upgrades of existing POTs will still be available). All other rewards (including tax free property deeds) that are currently available in the remaining pledges will also still be available.

The final player data wipe of all game data will also occur at 11:59 pm CDT (4:59 UTC) on July 27th. To commemorate this momentous milestone, we are holding a 12-hour Summer Telethon Part 1, starting at Noon CDT (17:00 UTC) on July 27th and running right up to the final player data wipe.

Summer 2016 Expiration Event, Part 2

At 11:59pm CDT (4:59 UTC) on August 22, 2016, we are expiring ALL remaining pledges, including: Adventurer, Founder, Royal Artisan, Explorer, Ancestor, Edelmann, Knight Marshal, Lord Marshal, Duke, and Lord of the Manor 2. To commemorate the final expiration of all remaining pledges, we are holding a 12-hour Summer Telethon Part 2, starting at Noon CDT on August 22nd.

We also plan to have a Release 31 postmortem during the first week of July. Stay tuned for those details on the official website.

If you have any questions about Release 32 and final player data wipe, please let us know!

Release 30 Instructions

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The statue of Grannus in front of the crumbling Valhold Castle
The statue of Grannus in front of the crumbling Valhold Castle

Greetings Avatars,

First I would like to apologize for forgetting to post our Release 29 instructions here last month. It was a complete oversight on our part and we hope to not repeat it in the future.

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 30 access for all backers at First Responder level and above begins this Thursday, May 26, at 10:30 AM US Central Daylight Time (15:30 UTC).

The pace of change as we approach Final Wipe and Lot Selection continues to accelerate as we make our final few, but quite impactful, changes and additions to Shroud of the Avatar. Release 30 is full of these impactful changes that include large additions to the story, reworkings of the crafting system, and refinement of the new targeting mechanics we introduced in R29.

Maximum Durability:

The biggest change of course is the change to maximum durability which can no longer be repaired at crafting stations unless you use a Crown of the Obsidian (see below for details). I understand that this change to durability so that items eventually break permanently feels challenging to process right now. On top of that the amount of time to gather materials and the sheer amount of materials it takes to make items seems daunting to say the least. Our goal has always been that it takes specialization and time to become a crafter and the goods you sell should have real value. If we tune gathering to be fast and items to use only a few materials then everyone could make their own goods and there would be no economy and no demand for crafters. If we left items permanent then crafters would have no demand to fill once players got a favorite set of gear.

We believe that all of these designs are necessary to have a truly player driven economy where effort is rewarded and the amount of time to make items is relatively commensurate to the time it takes to fight and advance through enemies. With all of that said the entire experience needs to balance entertainment with effort and we will be carefully tuning the experience over the next few releases (and forever for that matter).

Masterworks:

Crafting is also finally expanding with new skills including Masterworks which allow Smiths, Carpenters, and Tailors to add new abilities to items they create. This works exactly like the Enchanting we introduced for Alchemists in R29 although both of these systems now balance the power of the abilities added with reductions in durability. Our goal for the system is to create interesting choices between power and convenience. We also envision scenarios where Avatars might have specialized sets of powerful gear that they use for boss fights and PVP tournaments versus their everyday adventuring gear.

Courage Storyline:

The story also greatly expands with the Courage storyline now playable. To support that Valhold can be visited for the first time and various other scenes have been filled out with supporting story including Skrekk, Demig’s Battlecamp, Ferig’s Battlecamp, and Estgard. We also have added the first of our three Companions who will adventure with you in Offline Mode.

Targeting System:

Finally we spent time iterating and polishing the new targeting system we introduced in Release 29. Our goal was to provide the same level of functionality we had before we added the new system while still enjoying the advantages of the new system. To that end we have added back in target selection and target cycling amongst a host of other changes (see below for details).

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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. So, 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, and we do not yet have in-game systems to inform players of these changes, or to share ways to help them to explore new content and systems. This means we rely entirely 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. So, be sure to check out a couple of the Community Events Calendars run by our community members (via in-game book or the player run websites Avatars Circle Community Events and Events of the Avatars calendar).

Without further ado, here is a list of what you can expect to see in Release 30.

Novia Overworld Rework: When we first built the overworld map for Novia we strayed a bit too far from the original design as laid out in the cloth map. This resulted in a lot of discrepancies including some major geographical mismatches, rivers that looked like oceans (or which were missing entirely), roadways that were as wide as mountains, misplaced points of interest, and other such oddities. In Release 30, we begin the effort to correct all of these errors and have brought Novia back into alignment with the contours and geographic features of the cloth map. During this process, all coastlines and areas throughout the entire, expansive interior of Novia were honed. Consequently, we were required to temporarily remove a lot of the props and decorations from the scene, but we will be putting those back in steadily over the next two releases. This work also required us to re-position some of the towns and other points of interest. Additional changes include the addition of boat teleporters for every Player-Owned Town island, as the proper method for travel to them. Please note that the locations of a few POTs have changed during this work. If your town location changed during this process and you are unsatisfied with the new location please post as a bug in the bug forums with a requested new location and we will do our very best to accommodate your request at no charge.

Path of Courage: The Path of Courage is now blocked-in from start to finish for the first time. However, there are many moving parts to the story and some are only in as placeholders, while others are not yet working properly. We will need all of your help playing and testing so we can begin getting it to a more finished state.

Valhold: The ruined capital of the isle of Norgard was once a place of greatness but banners of yellow hang from crumbling stone pillars. Explore this key area in the Courage storyline and learn more about the war with the Kobolds, the titan Grannus, and the power of yellow. Valhold once stood as a beacon of hope and power, the home of the Knights of Norgard and the protector of those who were under threat. Yet who will protect the protectors when they themselves face their greatest peril? Now stricken with despair, its defenders wounded in both body and spirit, Valhold still stands, stricken, yet shield aloft, waiting for the final blow. Much of the fate of King Grannus and his family is revealed here, and players will find the Path of Courage reach its climax. Note that while the city of Valhold is available in multiplayer, the Throne Room of Grannus is a solo player instance.

 Brittany Fields: This primarily agrarian neighborhood to the southwest of Brittany supplies most of the food to the greater Brittany area. It is also home to a huge population of outlanders—primarily holders of village-sized deeds—but there are a variety of other lot sizes here as well.

 Companions: Companions are a hallmark of Lord British games and will appear for the first time in Release 30 in Offline Mode. They will travel with the player and assist whenever possible in your adventures. They will also engage in conversations with you about the world you find yourself in. The first companion to appear in the game is Fiona Fitzowen, the travelling bard and companion to the Avatar on their path of Love. Fiona is a bard in every sense of the word - a master of the lute, someone who will usually sing a song when prompted (and often when not) and without fail, will have something to say about the situation she finds herself in (and she seems to find herself in many) which will infuriate some and entertain more. Fiona is not one for fighting, but does keep a small crossbow ready when necessary (or when on the road and hunger beckons). She knows a smattering of magical arts, but like most travelling bards, just enough to be amusing. Many claim to have stolen Fiona's heart; it is an illusion she is happy to perpetuate. In fact, if you ask who her current love is, she will quickly change the subject. For someone who makes a living at telling stories, that is a tale she is not yet willing to tell. She is drawn to the avatar, but not in the romantic way everyone assumes. But...that is a tale she is better off spinning. Fiona can usually be found in Peladjar's Tavern in Ardoris, singing for her lodging and her amusement. Please note that Fiona is a work in progress—for R30, she will accompany you on your adventures and speak to you, but her dialogue is by no means complete and for now her comments on your travels are limited to Ardoris.

Save Games: In Offline Mode, players can now create and load save games. Game files can be transferred between computers as long as each computer is on the same version of SotA. Please note that save game data is currently tied to version, so when we publish new versions, we may overwrite the save game data. This will be solved when we update Offline mode to work properly with patching and deliver offline rewards.

And Much More! Click here for the complete R30 Instructions

Release 28 Instructions

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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 28 access for all backers at First Responder level and above begins this Thursday, March 31, at 10:30 AM US Central Daylight Time (15:30 UTC). 

Release 28 represents a huge expansion of the Novian landmass with 42 new scenes appearing in seven different regions. Those scenes include adventuring areas, towns, mines, and dungeons. The story continues to advance, as well, with the underground areas of Malice and Skrekk representing pivotal moments in the Love and Courage storylines. Malice and Skrekk also represent the latest in a string of visually competitive environments. In Release 28, we also took the first of many steps to make our characters as comparable as our environments by completely overhauling our male character. 

In addition, Release 28 contains a handful of general improvements to quality of life, such as increasing the top end of the Brightness slider to help those of you with darker monitors. You will notice even more of these improvements, especially in crafting. The Recipe Book has bigger and darker fonts, as well as a new table of contents with sub categories. We also introduced Bulk Crafting and Bulk Salvage.

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. So, 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, and we do not yet have in-game systems to inform players of these changes, or to share ways to help them to explore new content and systems. This means we rely entirely 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. So, be sure to check out a couple of the Community Events Calendars run by our community members (via in-game book or the player run websites Avatars Circle Community Events and Events of the Avatars calendar). 

Without further ado, here are the R28 deliverables: 

WARNING: STORY SPOILERS IN THIS SECTION! Some players requested that we warn you that you may want to skip the story section of the update if you want the story to remain a complete mystery before you play the game. 

The Shores of Malice and Malice: This ancient underground cavern on the shores of Stormwater Lake has long been used to inter the dead, but now the dead march forth from it. The Path of Love has led you to this final confrontation with the undead legions you have been fighting against ever since your arrival in Solace Bridge. A one-player instance, adventurers who brave the halls of Malice will discover much about their enemies… and their friends. Something, or someone is being held in its depths, and that threatens Ardoris and all of Novia  – can you discover what secrets the dead hide?

Skrekk and The Caverns of Skrekk: While the Courage storyline does not yet take you to the kingdom of the Kobolds you can still visit this underground mechanical marvel in northwest Norgard. The Kobolds are the most adventuresome when it comes to technology in Novia and are the source of almost every advancement we see in the land today. These advancements have only accelerated with the onslaught of Outlanders and it is only the constant hostilities between humans and Kobolds that prevent true leaps forward in matters of science and industry. Humans brave enough to venture into the depths of Skrekk will be met with hatred and contempt but rewarded with incredible sights. The Caverns of Skrekk is a one-player instance and though you can talk to a few kobolds that are not immediately trying to kill you, in general the story content is not yet implemented for this scene.

The Rise: This new dungeon is the largest dungeon to date. The Rise is the first of the main hubs in the underworld and connects multiple dungeon maps. While simple passage through the massive dungeon for travel purposes only takes a few minutes once mastered, those fearless adventurers brave enough to take a deeper dive will find multiple hours of exploration ahead of them. The Rise is NOT for the unskilled adventurer, the faint of heart, or those who lose their way easily. It includes seemingly endless passages, dozens of chambers, multiple skill-based challenges, a half-dozen unique player experiences, and several encounters targeted at groups of skilled players. The Rise is old school, hardcore dungeon crawling at its finest. Bring friends you trust, plenty of supplies, and maybe even some graph paper!

New Male Avatar: As many of you saw in a recent weekly update and Dev+ forum post, we have done a complete overhaul of the male avatar starting with the mesh and texture. We are still doing some final tweaks on the face, and next steps will be to polish all the armor and clothing. Once that is done, we will move on to polish and expansion of the hair styles. We will then repeat the entire process for the female character.

Bulk Crafting and Station Information UI: Crafters can now Craft and/or Salvage multiple items at once. We also added a new window to the crafting stations to deliver information that includs success chance, critical chance, and whether placed items represent an unlearned recipe (which should greatly assist with experimental learning of recipes).

And Much More! Click here for the complete R28 Instructions

Release 26 Instructions

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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 26 access for all backers at First Responder level and above begins this Thursday, January 28, at 10:30 AM US Central Time (16:30 UTC).

We decided to start 2016 with a BANG by making Release 26 one of our biggest releases to date! The world expanded with five completely new scenes including new segments in the Truth and Courage storylines (along with polish across multiple scenes). We also made over 100 playability tweaks to combat to address responsiveness, playability, and balance. On top of that, we migrated to the new crafting architecture which unlocked a huge swathe of crafting changes and additions.

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, so 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, and we do not yet have in-game systems to inform players of these changes, or to share ways to help them to explore new content and systems. This means we rely entirely 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. So, be sure to check out a couple of the Community Events Calendars run by our community members (via in-game book or the player run websites Avatars Circle Community Events and Events of the Avatars calendar).

Without further ado, here are the R26 deliverables (the following is a brief excerpt of the full post, which can be found here):

Full Wipe: Once again we are going to make some fundamental changes to item and quest architecture that require us to do a full wipe for Release 26. We apologize for the inconvenience. Please note that if you have been waiting to convert add-ons to store credit, this is your chance to do so as long as you do NOT login once R26 goes live (which automatically claims the items and prevents conversion to credit).

Combat Speed: Melee combat in R26 will be much faster than in previous releases. Magic will be slightly faster but more powerful than before. Damage per second is up on both sides but players will need to pay attention to managing their focus as it is now much easier to completely deplete your focus!

Free Attack Speed and Damage: Auto-attack and a standard free attack will do the same damage per hit but free attack can be done slightly faster. Charged free attacks (click and hold) now charge faster and do slightly more damage than before. With the current settings, well timed free attacks will do about 10% more than auto attack, and very well timed charged attacks will do about 10% more than the uncharged free attacks.

Consider System: Name plates on enemies will now show the level difference between the enemy and the player. Level Difference = Monster Level - Player Level. We are considering moving this to be an active skill in the future.

Resolute: The city of Resolute is the next destination for a new avatar following the Path of Courage. Holding an amulet of testimony from a dying Knight of Norgard, the player finds a fortified town held by his companions in arms and begins to learn about what threatens that noble order, both from within and without. The geothermal vents in the area have been harnessed to generate power using Kobold technology. Knights of Norgard maintaining watch in Resolute proudly display a mighty statue of Grannus, the Titan of Courage, in the main square.Quests in this area will take new avatars on the Path of Courage back to the scene of the Battle of Highvale to assist the Knights in retaking the village.

Aerie: The city of Aerie is situated on the tip of the Longfall Peninsula, surrounded by prairies and swamps and heavily reliant on wind power. Aerie is the City of Truth, and a key stop for players seeking the secret of bonesteel discovered in Blood River. The largest city in the Verdantis plain, and for a long time the hub of commerce and daily life in the region, the people there are most recently concerned of the elven settlers north of the city—some counsel coexistence, some warn of war. In the face of prejudice and fear, truth can take more than one shade… Please note that not all NPCs may be complete for this scene on day one of R26.

North Varisalla Foothills: This adventuring area in the Varisalla foothills was once rich in copper and other ores, but a massive Satyr-run mining operation in the area effectively stripped the land bare over several decades. The miners, primarily Faun slaves, were forced to work daily shifts of 12 hours or more, even after it became apparent that the ore in the area had been over mined. Even after productivity had hit bottom, the Satyrs refused to abandon the mines in the belief that a “motherlode” was still to be found. Over the decades, the entire area became honeycombed with an interconnected network of tunnels. Several years ago, a poorly reinforced mine shaft was constructed very close to an underground lake. The shaft’s wall was breached and the lake water quickly filled it and all connected tunnels. Hundreds of miners and their overseers were killed. The mining operation was finished, but rumors still inspired Kobolds and other scavengers to search the area for the never-found motherlode.

Sanctus Spine: This control point is located on the mountainous border of where South Paladis meets North Paladis and controls traffic flowing between the two regions. Recently, Kobolds have seized control of this important landmark and seek to stop any humans moving through the narrow pass.

Dysborg Ruins (PVP): Rumours say that Dysborg was once a great city of valiant fighters loyal to Lord British and his ancient Virtues. Sadly, Dysborg fell in ancient times. It is not known if Dysborg was overtaken by the Obsidian Cabal that rose 200 years ago, or crumbled on its own, under the corrupting power of the Obsidian Shards still seen within its walls. The Dysborg ruins remain a place of ruin and strife, generally avoided in modern times by those who fear falling prey to its corrupting influence.

Grasslands Template: This newest template is a rolling grassland with a river running through it and has the largest placeable area of any of the templates. Please note that Hometown is now a Grassland Template.

Dynamic Player-Owned Towns: We added another round of dynamic Player Owned Towns to the game. We also fixed issues, converted biomes, added connections, and upgraded sizes of several POTs.

New Crafting System: After several months of preparation we finally changed over to the new architecture which removes the last few blocks we had to greatly expanding crafting, providing for material modifiers, gear naming, components, etc.

Components Tooltips: Now show their exact modifier both before and after being incorporated into gear.

Agriculture: We made some passes through agriculture to clean up some bugs and fix some balance issues.

Chaos Daemon: This master of chaos will assault players with Chaos Bolts, teleports, and even turn their own pets against them. Additionally, he randomly changes his highest Attunement, forcing players to constantly adjust their strategy. Rumors that someone was foolish enough to summon and trap one underneath Solania have yet to be verified…

Performance: For R26 we began taking some baby steps towards our long term performance goals. The focus for this release was primarily improving our worst case areas. This includes heavily populated and decorated cities and also, scenes with a large number of players in small spaces. Much of the work focused on Level of Detail (LOD). LOD is a system where lower polygon count versions of objects are made and dynamically swapped to improve performance. That swapping happens either through quality settings, distance from camera, or performance fallback routines.

Seasonal Content: In support of the Lunar New Year and Valentine’s Day, we created a set of seasonal items for sale in the Add-On Store.

Localization: Various tasks were completed and bugs were fixed to support the ongoing localization effort. All the initial languages are advancing steadily with Spanish still in the lead at over 60% and German steadily catching up with almost 50%

Grand Tour 26: As with each previous release, we will have a Grand Tour. Completing this quest is the ONLY way to gain this rare reward. The hat for this release is a Bowler. Please note that this is the final Grand Tour so we can focus on the storyline going forward.

And Much, Much, More! Click here to see all the cool stuff in Release 26!