November 16, 2012
Sorry for the delay in the DNs, but this has been an exceptionally busy week as we go headfirst into Omega development. Before I get to the meat, I would like to start off by thanking all of the EpicDuelists who made my birthday this past weekend extra special. I did not expect the outpouring of complements and birthday wishes. You guys rock!
Nightwraith's Wraith Pikes will be returning since I forgot them last week. Sorry for the inconvenience, but at least you have an additional week to get them!
The great and powerful numeromancer Rabblefroth has been sighted in the Wastelands of Delta V! Carrying his massive satchel of arcane tomes, he searches the planet tirelessly for answers to the secrets of the Universe like "Why are we here?" and "Can ghosts be used for fuel?"
Not usually prone to fighting, Rabblefroth is nonetheless not to be trifled with. His mastery of the arcane arts is so great he has been known to summon weapons from the ether and turn is ancient tomes into projectile weapons. If you defeat him, you will be rewarded with an achievement and perhaps some long division homework.
Be sure to check back with the mercurial mage from week to week as he will periodically ask the citizens of Delta V questions to help improve their livelihoods. Your participation will be greatly appreciated.
Charfade and I have been working hard on improving one of the fundamental elements of EpicDuel -- the character model. This element is one of the oldest parts of EpicDuel and it doesn't wear it's age well. We've learned a great deal in our time working at Artix Entertainment, but we needed some fresh perspectives to breathe new life into our characters so we assembled Yergen, Samba, and Cysero to assist us.
After an overwhelmingly informative session in which we acted out possible EpicDuel animations with Nerf weapons, we gathered the notes and set about tearing down basic character animations and poses to make the model more dynamic. This is a change that everyone will notice. It will make the game look more appealing to new players, while making battle feel fresh and exciting for veterans.
Going forward, you will not see much content being released with each update until we have launched Omega. There are a lot of changes happening on the Dev database that make it very challenging to introduce a ton of new content until after Omega is live. We have a tentative release deadline planned for December, but there is more to do for this phase than any yet to date. This also coincides with our big Winter release, which will bring us back to Frysteland against new and familiar foes.
Stay tuned for further Omega updates with a complete breakdown of the features we intend to introduce with this massive update.
July 25, 2012
Three Doors Down
Go Legion, Go!
Congratulations to Administrator 7 and the Legion, who have prevailed to open the third Vault Door, and have exclusive access to the Vault Breaker III achievement along with the Magma Grenade. But, as they say, it ain’t over ‘til it’s over, and there’s still plenty of fight left to be had! The resourceful Exiles have shown that they are capable of great things when rallied behind a common cause. Could the Lawman be the charismatic, unifying leader they've been waiting for?
The Final Vault Door
With the fall of the third Vault door, players will be fighting the fourth and Final Vault Door, the true entrance into the Delta Vault. You may have thought that the first three were a challenge, but this one is the real deal.
This is for all the marbles (I lied, there are no marbles): the alignment that manages to power through this behemoth will be declared the winner, and determine the final outcome!
What’s contained deep within the Delta Vaults? To find out, you’ll have to attack the door with all you’ve got. Grenades will continue to drop, and the new War mission chains (going in for real this time, and available from your alignment lieutenant: Ulysses for the Exiles and Valestra for the Legion) will go a way towards blasting down that door.
In addition, we’ll be introducing a limited-quantity grenade for both alignments: the Om Nom Bomb! This rare grenade summons mechachillids to gnaw on the Vault door itself, then go boom! These grenades will only be available from the Heavy Mechachillid outside the final door at will not be available through war drops!
***To ensure that as many different players get to use the Om Nom Bomb as possible we will only be allowing players to purchase one bomb at a time. You can purchase more after using the item, but you can only have one in your inventory at a time!
We'll also be adding new credit-only Mechachillid-based weapons for both Legion and Exile forces! These weapons will not have any special skills, but will allow a wider range of players to own rare Infernal War weapons!
With all the new grenades and grenade drops, please keep in mind that there will not be another Vault. Remaining grenades in your inventory after the war can be sold back to clear them out of your inventory, but there is absolutely no incentive to stockpile them. Grenades are happiest when thrown. Make your grenades happy and huck them at that blasted Vault!
I’ve been getting a lot of reports lately from players who have been scammed, many of whom gave their information to individuals on Facebook who claimed to be ArtixEntertainment staff. This is especially disheartening in light of the Account Safety Awareness contest. But, just a few reminders:
ArtixEntertainment staff will NEVER ask for your password or other personal information. If someone claiming to be me or another staff member asks for your personal info, please report them.
We will NOT conduct moderator searches via Facebook. When we are calling for moderators, we will announce in the games’ design notes. Probably the worst way to go about becoming a moderator is to contact one of us and say “Can I be mod?”; the best way is to make yourself stand out by being polite, constructive, and helpful. Also, players under the age of majority (that’s 18 in the US) will not be considered for moderator positions.
You can contact us for more information about staff positions, but if you are looking for a position as development staff, be prepared to send a resume/CV, cover letter, and portfolio of relevant work (ie. programs you’ve written, examples of your art or animation, or a writing sample). Demanding a job saying “I should be staff because I have good ideas so hire me now” does not count as a cover letter.
Anyone offering you a job at ArtixEntertainment in exchange for your personal information is trying to scam you.
Thank you, and stay safe!
And Now For Something Completely Different...
This fact portion is not about insects. Earlier I tweeted about something that made me inconsolably sad: squirrels do not remember their friends following hibernation. That statement comes from a 2010 study by Jill Mateo (“Self-referent phenotype matching and long-term maintenance of kin recognition”. Animal Behaviour. 80: 929-935) which was conducted on Belding’s ground squirrels (Urocitellus beldingi). These ground squirrels, native to the Western United States are extremely nepotistic and are considered a model system for studying kin recognition.
In this study, baby squirrels were separated from their litter and raised by foster mothers in groups that were not biologically related. Following hibernation, squirrels were able to recognize their siblings, but not their foster brothers and sisters, suggesting that they are comparing the scent of newly-encountered squirrels to their own scent. They appeared to retain no memories of their fostermates following hibernation.
This actually contradicts data from social insects, such as ants or wasps, who maintain long-term memory of nestmates following overwintering. So, the question is: would mechachillids aroused from hibernation remember you?
Tags: Cinderella Cinderella marbles marbles War War Infernal Infiltration Infernal Infiltration Bugs Bugs Grenades Grenades Weapons Weapons Mechachillids Mechachillids marbles marbles War War Infernal Infiltration Infernal Infiltration Bugs Bugs Grenades Grenades Weapons Weapons Mechachillids Mechachillids
May 16, 2012
Buzz! Buzz! Buzz!
How are you enjoying your new Pyro Flies? Be sure to keep them well fed from yummy enemy skills or they might carry you off instead! Mechachillids (Kraggor's race) have been spotted emerging from burrows across Delta V which lead us to believe that there's something big happening in the old Varium mines. The Mechachillids were built to dig, so maybe they've uncovered something extra nasty down there...something that should have stayed buried.
We’re adding another reward to the current selection of bonus items available with varium purchase: the Tactical Battlegear pack. This reward is worth 3 keys, and contains unique level 20 weapons, so it will be useful for those who have some experience in the game, but are still having trouble against those fully-armored level 25s!
Remember, all of our current promotional items will also be available, and you can use keys to unlock multiple rewards. For example, you can use the 3 key package to unlock one 2 key reward and 1 single key reward, or select a 5 key package and chose a 3 key reward and a 2 key reward.
This week, we will be opening the Refinery under the Minetower. Players already know about the Mechachillidae, but what other secrets are contained in the Refinery? And what about the mysterious Delta Vaults?
The Refinery and the areas beyond will be the setting for the upcoming Infernal Infiltration War.
This war will also feature new mission types, such as missions that are completed by winning random 1v1, 2v2, or any random battle!
Chemotaxis is the process by which recognition proteins on cells recognize chemical signals. Many insects recognize chemical signals in the form of pheromones, such as aggregation, alarm, or signal pheromones, or to attract mates. Common in social insects is the formation of pheromone trails, such as those laid by ants, which are then followed by other members of the colony.
The Mechachillidae are also able to follow trails, such as those left by citizens’ personal teleportation devices. Which is why Kraggor is able to follow players so swiftly!
Artix and Sepulchure action figures are going on sale at HeroMart this Friday, and they should also be at a Toys ‘R' Us near you on May 23 (provided you live in the United States). Keep an eye on Artix.com for the lastest updates.
The following is a correspondence between Silas Auer and Paloma San Marco, Administrators of Fortune City districts 7 and 9 respectively.
To Paloma San Marco, Administrator of Fortune City’s 9th District:
Paloma, I know you prefer communication to be high-tech, but I really can’t risk this letter being picked up by Her Excellency’s tech squad. I hope you understand. You’ve been a loyal friend and confidant ever since you were a Guard under my command fifteen years ago. I know I’m no longer your commanding officer, but I hope I can trade on that authority for a huge favor.
My informant in the old mine tower tells me that the man who’s taken control of that area, my old enemy John St. Alban, is planning on cracking open the Delta Vaults. You know the rumors as well as I do- if the Lawman gets his bloodied hands on whatever’s down there... well, I know the man as well as anyone. He’s the kind of man who’ll stab you in the back while convincing you that it was your idea to get stabbed in the first place!
I need to take care of this. The Lawman will die by my hands- this isn’t a job I trust to anyone else. All I’m asking of you is to make sure the scum who call District 7 their home manage not to kill each other in my absence. Or just kill each other a little. Her Excellency can’t find out that I’m shirking my administrative duties, not after what happened with Williamson. While I’m not acting against Her Excellency, I ain’t acting on her orders either.
Thank you, Paloma.
To Silas Auer, Administrator of Fortune City’s 7th District
Silas, I built the watchdog systems. I concur, pen to paper is the perfect way to avoid detection.
I’m half-surprised that you didn’t try to get the old team back together for this. I know that Boothe would be itching for some warmer weather- although he probably likes the cold, being Krampus royalty and all. Neither Boothe nor Habuki are Alydriah’s favorites at this time, and I have not engaged in a true mission in far too long. My sword grows rusted on the shelf above my desk. I do not need to mention Lorenzo. Is Valestra involved?
Exercise caution, my friend, that you do not allow your anger to overtake you. Vengeance is sweet, but the fruit has a bitter rind. And Her Excellency may not see things through your eyes.
To Paloma San Marco
Valestra is joining me. St. Alban’s as responsible for her arm as he is for my face. I’ve got a few others with a bone to pick with the Lawman, including his oldest daughter. This is not your fight, Paloma.
Lorenzo. I don’t know who that kid in the train hub is, but he sure ain’t Lorenzo. One of mine put Lorenzo in the ground.
I really don’t see why we need to concern Her Excellency with this at all. She can’t see anyone doing anything to bring her down any, no matter what’s in there. Though I fear even for us if it’s something worthwhile to her.
Besides. You know how I feel about rules.
April 10, 2012
Bunny Battalions Continued
Post PAX Preparations
Some of you might be wondering why we didn't just use CS5 all along. Well, at the time EpicDuel was first being developed CS3 was new, and it was impossible to forsee it's limitations. This happens all the time in software development, but it was an extremely valuable lesson to learn and formidable challenge to overcome. Hopefully, we can wrangle Titan into giving us more details in the next EpicDuel Q & A.
I am sorry to report that these new packs will be delayed by another week. This week was very trying with all the CS5 testing, so we were unable to implement and thoroughly test the new packages. We really wanted to get this in, but it's not something that can be rushed out. Again, I apologize for the inconvenience.
These new packs will also give us more flexibility for players to mix and match Varium quanities with promotional items, and will allow us to give players more exciting options for packaged gear in the future.
Maybe they know!
Wednesday Livestream at 4pm with Mido!
Mido comes to AQW! If you've played through Etherstorm, you'll have met him already. If you have only played EpicDuel, we can only assure you that he is an awesome artist and now you get to see his incredible art skills in action! This Wednesday at 4PM server time, log in to AQWorlds and /join stream to see Mido take YOUR suggestions and turn them into an awesome in-game item (AQW that is)!
January 04, 2012
Frysteland Final Phase
An Epic New Year!
Welcome back, EpicDuelists. I hope you all had a great holiday and had a great time ringing in the New Year of 2012! The staff is back in the office, and are all grateful for the time spent with friends and family during this holiday season. Now that we’re refreshed, we’re ready to begin the Final Phase of the Frysteland War!
Frysteland Final Phase
EpicDuel’s first war is approaching the final stretch, and your allies will need everyone pulling together to assure victory! I know you guys have all been working diligently- as of the writing of these design notes, over 15,000 unique characters have competed in the Frysteland War! There have been real-life wars with fewer participants! You guys have all done a magnificent job, so regardless of which side prevails, you all deserve to be commended for your efforts!
However, the war is not quite over. To bring that final push, we’ll be releasing the long-promised missions, along with the War Bosses, Commander Edgar Boothe fighting for the Legion, and King Alaric fighting for the Krampus! Could this final phase turn the tide? Only one way to find out!
King Alaric the Technologically Inept is a fair and just warrior-king. Known as the Child-King, Alaric rose to power during the Uprising at the age of 15, following his father Callan the Decent’s death during the Haze of Iwona. Under the tutelage of his great-aunt Aldhagrimm the Erudite, he’s grown to follow in the footsteps of his grandmother, the great King Andra the Merciful, who was murdered by Baelius.
We’re coming down to the wire here, people! If you’re Exile, don’t let those yetis down! If you are Legion, do not disappoint your leader!
There, I fixed it!
We’ve received a few complaints about blue stars not showing up on character pages, and we’ll be fixing that as soon as possible! We’ll also be fixing the issues of duplicate achievements, and war achievements not updating correctly.
The following is a brief rundown of the balance changes that will be implemented in the next release. We're still in the process of testing them, so this list is subject to change!
A Winner is You!
Congratulations to all of you who entered the First Ever EpicDuel Holiday House Decorating Contest! The following characters’ houses have been judged by the staff and testing team (the judges are: Charfade, Practel, Ashari, Illuminator, Lycus, and ME!) Using a super-secret method that we are not allowed to discuss under penalty of noogie, the following in-game characters have been selected for the sweet prize of an achievement and home item!
In no particular order:
Prizes will be visible on the next Server restart! If you see your name up here but did not receive your prizes, please let us know!