Thursday, October 6, 2011

AVWW Beta 0.519, "Mysterious Pylons," Released!

This one is packed with more cool stuff.  Probably the biggest new thing is the new "pylons" on the world map.  These are basically magical barriers that prevent you from crossing certain region tiles.  These barriers have a fairly temporary graphic for now, but it's clear where the barriers are, anyhow. 

To bring down a barrier, you have to go to one of the pylons that actually generates it.  Destroy the pylon, and the whole line of vortexes goes down, allowing you passage.  Right now if you go out in adventure mode, it's just a cache of bosses to fight to bring down the pylon, but over time we'll be making the pylon a physical object that you have to destroy.  You can also use a strategic order to destroy the pylon magically from afar, presuming you have enough red consciousness shards!

Also of note is that the boss balance was tweaked some more, and each boss also has substantially randomized stats now.  Previously the randomization was so slight that I don't think anyone even noticed it.  But now bosses, unlike base enemies, are each unique in stats.  That will grow even further over time as we get into elemental damage and immunities/weaknesses on specific bosses, etc.

The next big thing is that profession books for spellgem crafting, spell scroll crafting, and outfitter crafting have all been removed.  Just getting the resources needed to craft a recipe of those sorts is enough of a challenge, and those resources are (and always have been) gated by chunk level like a lot of other content in the game.  So this isn't making it so that you just get access to all spells at the start of the game.  It's just making it so that spell availability is based on the resources you have, rather than the resources and the profession books you've collected.

Profession books were easy to collect, but tedious; and they were monumentally unclear to most new players.  I see this as being a really key simplification to making the game increasingly easy for new players to pick up.  That said, there's a whole new "intro mission" that we'll be building into the game before too long, and that will be directly aimed at new players and getting them up to speed in a matter of minutes but in a way that is more fun and game-oriented than the current adviser guardian stone method.

There's also another music track, which Pablo described as "probably hardest piece I've worked on for any of our games."  I can certainly see why -- he'd already created awesome boss music for the game, but I asked him to come up with something even more awesome to be used just for the overlord battles.  So that's what he did!

The list of stuff in this release just goes on and on, so mostly I'll refer you to the release notes rather than just repeating all of it verbatim here.  But microboss balance is better, the fire damage over time thing is fixed, slowing frost is a lot more interesting now, attractive drops work better, bosses should never seed in walls anymore, enemies should no longer be absent from stairwells anymore, rhinos and eagles are now outdoors-only, and so on.

The next release is likely to be tomorrow, because the current stuff on Keith's and my list are larger blobs of stuff than are likely to be ready by tonight.  Enjoy!

This is a standard update that you can download through the in-game updater itself, if you already have 0.500 or later. When you launch the game, you'll see the notice of the update having been found if you're connected to the Internet at the time. If you don't have 0.500 or later, you can download that here.

1 comment:

  1. We need to shut down ALL those beacons err pylons!


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