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EpicDuel PVP Game Design Notes

Behind the scenes information about EpicDuel's development and releases, a real-time PVP MMO that you can play online in your web browser.

June 20, 2012

Brace Yourselves: War is Coming

Hey there EpicDuelists.  After a brief hiatus where I was working on HeroSmash, we are back with our regular helping of Design Notes.  These are gonna be extra meaty today, so make sure you have a good appetite for news!


Infernal Infiltration War

This means WAR!

Originally, we planned to release the War this Friday, but after some massive discussions involving the proposed features for the Infernal Infiltration War, including new battle types, new NPC AI, and new consumables, we determined that it will be better to release a fully tested and polished version of the War next week rather than a buggy, less spectacular version this week. 

However, we do plan to have a working prototype for Friday so our testers can create some awesome preview videos and demonstrate some of the War's exciting new features!  This is disappointing short term news, but we are confident it will be worth the wait!

During the Conflict, players should report to their alignment’s 4 officers.  Each side has a General, Lieutenant, 3rd Officer, and Auxiliary Officer.  The War Officers are (in order) Exile: John St. Alban (The Lawman), Ulysses, Galatea, and Selina; Legion: Silas Auer (Administrator 7), Valestra, Nightwraith, and Ella St. Alban (Cinderella).  There will be NPC adjustments and improvements soon- the Lawman’s revamp is going live with the start of the war, with revamps to Ella and Valestra soon to follow.


Attack the Vault

It can sure take a punch! 

Ok, here’s the real meat and potatoes.  This war will function differently than Frysteland- we’ve learned from our mistakes and we’re ready to take on this next challenge.  Basically, this is set up as a race to the finish.  Instead of strictly Legion vs. Exile, both Legion and Exile players will be punching through the Vault gates. Baelius spared no expense when securing the Delta Vault so the Vault doors are protected by multiple layers of shielding to protect the them from human activity.  When breached, each level of protection releases a special “something” that will be discovered when that level of defense is breached.  What is the reward?  That’s for you to discover!

Vault War Bar

So, how are you getting through the Vault's defenses?  You’ll be using grenades, available from drops or by purchase, to inflict massive damage on the Vault doors.  ALL grenades will be available as drops (no exceptions), so anyone can use any bomb on the doors.  There will also be mission chains that award even more war bombs!  The catch is the Vault doors fight back!  How long can you last against its devastating security systems?  We will be featuring the most devastating players in Infernal War leaderboards!

The Mechachillids are, understandably, not happy about surface dwellers ransacking their home, so they’re sending Mechachillid soldiers out into the world to bring you down in a new battle mode. Random 1v1 or 2v2 battles have a chance to match you with a Mechachillid AI opponent or ally!


Loyalty is the Key

Just a reminder that the special Alignment Shops will remain open for the duration of the conflict, and will be periodically updated with more items (though not this week).  Don’t like what’s available?  After the Infernal Infiltration War is won, the Legion or Exile Key will be converted into an achievement!

But remember- choose your alignment wisely.  Once you’ve chosen a side during wartime, there’s no turning back.  You may still leave an Exile faction and rejoin another Exile faction, but there will be absolutely no turncoating during the Infernal Infiltration War.


New War Cheevos

 Infernal War Hero

Along with a new War comes new War Ranks- the stats for each rank are the same as they were for the Frysteland War and the player with the most points for his or her alignment (in this case, the one who inflicts the most damage upon the vault) at reset will win the Infernal War Hero achievement! Yay!


U Jelly?

Honeybees (Apis mellifera) are well known for their production of honey, which is formed by purifying and concentrating the nectar harvested by workers.  The worker regurgitates the honey into cells in the hive several times to treat the nectar with the enzyme invertase (which breaks sucrose into its monosaccharide components glucose and fructose) and lower the water content, making it into a sticky syrup.  The honey is then consumed by the colony members, including the larvae.

However, this is not the only food consumed by bees.  All larvae are fed initially with Royal Jelly, which is secreted from the mouthparts of workers.  Royal Jelly is a high-quality nutritious food high in B vitamins and fatty acids, and female larvae that are destined to become Queens are fed Royal Jelly spiked with Royalactin.  This peptide causes stimulation and maturation of the ovaries, which differentiates her from her sterile worker sisters.

Tags: Cinderella Infernal Infiltration War Silas The Lawman NPCs Vault Delta exile Legion Factions Loyalty


June 15, 2012

1.4.6 Patch Notes


  • Major updates to the Faction system (Details below)
  • New mission to turn all your blueprints from previous missions into a shop key on Silas (Legion) and The Lawman (Exile)6
  • This new shop key gives access to an Alignment-specific shop with level 35 weapons, including 3 Credit-only Swords, plus a Varium Staff, Blade, and Club.


  • Exit battle screen appearing without clicking the exit button
  • A number of kicks related to various weapons and armors with special effects
  • Several items animating outside of battle
  • Losses not counting towards win percentage on daily leaderboards until you win your first battle of the day
  • Hourly and daily messages would queue up repeatedly if a server was offline



There were a major set of changes this patch to Factions in order to simplify and update the system to work nicer with active battles like Frysteland and the upcoming Infernal Infiltration War.

Everything is now centered around Influence. You will have your own Personal Influence, and your faction will have a separate Faction Influence. The following actions grant Influence:

  • 1v1 Win - 5 Influence (Personal and Faction)
  • 2v2 Win - 15 Influence (Personal and Faction)
  • Juggernaut Win - 15 Influence (Personal and Faction)
  • Flag Capture - 150 Influence (Faction)
  • Alignment Victory - 250 Influence (Faction)
  • Faction 1v1 Champion - 1000 Influence (Faction)
  • Faction 2v2 Champion - 1000 Influence (Faction)
  • Faction Jug Champion - 1000 Influence (Faction)
  • World Domination - 2500 Influence (Faction)

Personal Influence
Everyone will have a Personal Influence total on your stats page that will never reset. Your starting Influence was determined by your wins with your current faction and a percentage of your War Kills from faction cannons. There is a new leaderboard for All-Time Personal Influence.

Your Faction will also have a Total Influence amount that never resets. This number replaces Score in determining your faction's level. There is a new leaderboard for All-Time Faction Influence.

World Dominations are now determined by your Faction's "Daily Influence" which resets at the end of each day. Only the top faction for the Alignment that wins that day will be given a World Domination.

Daily Faction 1v1, 2v2, and Juggernaut Champions will be awarded in the same way as before, as will Alignment Victories. There are new leaderboards for Daily Faction Juggernaut Wins, and for All-Time Faction Juggernaut Champion points.

Flags now require 250 Influence (instead of 50 wins) with your faction in order to make a token deposit on them.

Also, the faction that controls the flag will now be taxed 100 tokens (up from 50) per hour.

Finally, to help prevent scamming, if a member that was active within the last 30 days is kicked out of a faction, any tokens they have contributed while in the faction will be taken from that faction's TOP flag (up to a max of 10000 tokens). This replaces the old Influence tax that was applied for kicking a new or active member. If a player has been inactive for more than 30 days, there is no penalty for kicking the player.

Faction Cannons
Faction Cannons have been disabled for now to give us time to fit them into the new system.

Exile/Legion Wars
Wars (such as Frysteland and Infernal Infiltration) will now award Influence. These will be designed to provide more Influence than normal to incentivize participation in the war.

Tags: Patch Notes Titan


June 08, 2012

1.4.5d Patch Part 2


  • New maps and NPCs in the Minetower
  • Portuguese/Spanish characters now supported by chat


  • MAJOR: Fixed NPCs not leaving battles in all cases, eventually leading to a server crash
  • Updated skill descriptions on multis to reflect that they do 85% damage now to multiple targets
  • NPC challenge button properly disables during server shutdown sequence

Tags: Titan Patch Notes


June 08, 2012

Infernal Weapons Explained

Loyalty is the Key

As we improve the War system, we will be introducing new and exciting features to differentiate the alignments without disrupting game balance.  One of these features is a Legion and Exile shop to reward alignment loyalty which can be accessed with a special key.  Our new volunteer artist Disturbed has created a grand cache of Infernal weapons to reward the loyalty of Legion and Exile players.  

Weapon preview 1

Weapon preview 2

But how do you acquire these weapons?  You will need to turn in FOUR Blueprint scraps to either Silas or The Lawman.  Because there are now tons of mission in the game, I have located this handy-dandy list of missions that reward Blueprint Scraps!

Refined - Slayer

Dance, Puppets! Dance! - Alydriod

Toxic Love - Lepus

Impious Convictions - The Lawman

God Prefers a Heretic - Silas Auer

After you have gathered FOUR Blueprint scraps (they will be sellable later if you have too many for whatever reason), please report to either the Lawman or Silas for the mission "The Bigger Picture".  Completeing either mission will reward either an Exile Locker Key (Lawman) or Legion Locker Key (Silas).  This item will unlock a shop contained on either NPC offering exclusive alignment specific items.  

Remember, once you have completed the mission and turned in the scraps for a key, you CANNOT access the opposite alignment's shop.  We plan to update these shops as the war progresses. 

Because this system is new and we want everyone to be aware of how it works and where to get Blueprint scraps, we are delaying the release of these weapons until next week.  We also want to ensure that the servers are stable before introducing this new feature.  We had some setbacks this week, but next week we'll hit the war even harder to make up for lost time!


Faction Cannons

We still plan to remove the Faction Cannons until they can be adjusted for the new Faction system, but their removal will be delayed until next week.

Tags: Nightwraith Infernal Infiltration Weapons Disturbed Silas Lawman Blueprint Scraps


June 06, 2012

1.4.5d Patch Notes


  • Beta weapons now Ultra-Rare (from Rare)


  • Multi damage on more than one target increased from 75% to 85%


  • Poison and Frost Bite debuffs were lasting longer than intended
  • Fixed an exploit that allowed users to spam messages
  • Several fixes to Finder Bot entries for unavailable weapons


  • Improvements to battle timers
  • Many client packets reduced in size
  • Dead battle deletion improved


There were also a few fixes over the last weekend in a hotfix. The following changes were made:

  • Fixed a problem with NPCs not being cleared after battle resulting in an eventual server crash
  • Fixed the text for mission "Saccharine Sentiments" saying you needed 5 wins instead of 1
  • Fixed a completion issue with the "Equal Opportunity Head Banging" mission

Tags: Titan Patch Notes


June 06, 2012

A Stable Design Notes

Hi there EpicDuelists- we’ve got some really exciting stuff for you this week.


As you may have noticed, it appeared that all of EpicDuel’s servers were down. Well, they weren’t. Last week, Titan and Rabble introduced a new system to automatically show a server as Offline in the event of a crash to prevent players from attempting to login to a dead server. They also changed the way time is synchronized across the servers. Apparently, with this new change, when the day switched over, all the servers were flagged as dead. However, thanks to your reports, we got to the bottom of the issue and have a few fixes planned this week that should address our server woes!  

Ideally, we want to create a system that can automatically notify us when the servers crash and even automatically reboot a crashed server. That's a feature that ALL of the AE games would love to have, especially with two new games on the way. We are not quite that fancy yet, but we are working on solutions to improve stability and manager server instability. Server stability is our #1 priority and we are working extra hard this week to eliminate errors and bugs so we don't have any down time during the War.


Infernal Infiltration Imminent

We should be starting up with the new war later this month, but preparations must still be made. We are introducing 2 of the new NPCs that you’ll be interacting very closely with during the saga- the Legion and Exile Footsoldiers. Without talking about too much I’m not authorized to announce yet (you’ll get the full breakdown when we’re ready to launch the war proper), these guys basically represent you.

In addition, those of you who were able to finish up every mission and chain that awards blueprint scraps should report to your Infernal Infiltration Alignment General (John “The Lawman” St. Alban for Exile players and Administrator Silas Auer for Legion players) to turn in your blueprint scraps. Your reward will be a key that unlocks a special shop full of alignment-specific items and weapons designed by our new artist, Disturbed!


Faction Improvement

RabbleFroth announced in the AEF that we’re going to be streamlining and improving the Faction System. Currently, the cannons are rather disconnected with the rest of the Faction systems and highly favor Varium players. To that end, the Faction Cannons will be removed for the time being until they can be retooled for the new faction system. For the full story, check out RabbleFroth's post in the AEF.


The Inventor and the Cyborg

Time does not pass as normal in the Void. The Void’s inhabitants experience each moment of their lives simultaneously and exclusively. To protect itself from this torture, the mind will drop memories of the time spent- some people exit the void knowing only their name, some not even that, while others experience their exile only as the blink of an eye.

When Ulysses returned from the Void, he was one of those who could remember nothing.

Upon news of Ulysses’ return, The Lawman “acquired” a technician named Mort to assist with the repair of the Inventor, and gave them safe haven in the area surrounding the Mine Tower. St. Alban’s pockets were deep, and Mort a man of desperate financial straits, so he did not think twice to use semi-legal means to get the required medical supplies for the maimed inventor.

Mort was the perfect man to get in and out of classified areas- he was a tech working under the Shadow Guard’s respected Security Officer Paloma San Marco, which gave him clearance to come and go as he pleased, and he was low-ranking enough that his presence aroused no suspicions. So, under the Lawman’s command, he was able to freely take out gauze, painkillers, and nanomedicines. The stolen medical supplies included a SurgeryBot, a top-of-the line model that included the programming from a deceased surgeon.

Day and night, Ulysses was nursed back to relative health- the damage was extensive, and his memory was foggy at best. Most of the time, he could only speak in vague thoughts, but eventually he awoke during a procedure and merely asked “What happened?”

Being the only one around, the SurgeryBot answered “You were injured, sir. I am treating your wounds.”

“Where am I?”

“You’re safe.”

“I can’t see anything.”

“Your eyes were destroyed in the explosion.”

“Who are you?”

“I am SurgeryBot 7948. I was commissioned by...”

“No.” Ulysses interrupted. “Are you a program or a cyborg?”

SurgeryBot paused, holding the scalpel above his body. “I’m a cyborg. I was a surgeon for over thirty-five years.”

“Who were you?”

“I do not have access to that, sir. According to my biomarkers, I was female. That is the only information in my memory banks.”

“That makes two of us. I can remember vague shadows of names, nothing about my life before.”

As she worked, Ulysses asked her about the outside world, how it had changed from his memories, what few he had, and she told him about the Exile, the Revolution, about Baelius and the Legion, and about the man who had given her the directive to heal Ulysses. As she explained the world, he reached up toward her with his intact arm, and held her hand. Years later, she would say it was that moment when she started to remember her humanity.

Tags: Cinderella Infernal Infiltration


June 01, 2012

1.4.5c Patch Notes


  • Low level missions on Brunson
  • Intermediate missions on Mirv, Valery, and the Fortune City Shadow Guard
  • Automatic server crash detection: shows a server as offline and opens a new server for login
  • Centralized hourly and daily tasks to help prevent events like World Dominations or Flag Captures from happening more than once or not at all


  • Fixed a bug where skills that scaled off of weapon damage ignored encumbrance and were doing more damage than intended


  • Lawman had 2 mission buttons
  • Players being unable to purchase houses
  • Several accidental automated player kicks
  • Double credits being awarded with Varium packages
  • Extra credits sometimes being awarded in 2v2 matches
  • NPC battles counting for PvP missions
  • 2v2 and Juggernaut matches hanging if one person fails to load the battle
  • Linked allies were sometimes unable to fight a boss


  • Many Portuguese typos and inconsistencies fixed

Tags: Titan Patch Notes


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