January 24, 2014
Welcome to Delta V
As you may have noticed, this week's release is a wee bit behind. We've been working all this week and most of the week prior to develop a new tutorial to welcome new players to the worlds of Delta V in style! This requires a lot of custom programming and loads of new artwork to make the experience streamlined and exciting. When finished, it will be leagues ahead of what we have now: randomly placing a new character in the midst of Central Station without the foggiest clue of what to do!
Since the success of this new feature is so crucial to maintaining new players, we're devoting the weekend to refining this feature to release early next week. We don't want to risk releasing the tutorial Friday evening, only to find that new players coming in over the weekend are getting stuck, frustrated, and logging out forever!
In the meantime, check out this brief rundown of what we have so far. It may not be thrilling for you veteran players, but it is interesting to think about from a game design standpoint: how to introduce EpicDuel to a new player without overwhelming them with options!
Welcome to the Feldspar Flats! This region near Central Station was mark for heavy construction before the war against Baelius. Now, it's littered with the ruins of abandoned scaffolding and rogue construction robots. Miraculously, life still flourishes in this region, as the volcanic soil is quite nourishing for plant life.
Your first task will be to move around the screen. This may seem overly-simplistic for veterans, but you might be surprised by how many players first attempt to use the keyboard for movement!
Ok, you've overcome that challenge. Feeling good! Ready for a mission?
AI Trainers (relatives of the M4tr1x AI) will offer simple missions, introducing players to missions as an important means for collecting credits, experience, and items. They will also serve as an introduction to some quick battles against Renegade Junkers. Apparently, years of neglect and dust storms have corrupted their programming and made them openly hostile to new arrivals.
Collect Robot Parts to help the AI Trainers reset their programming!
Be sure to disarm them! You'll need all the help you can get to face the enemies ahead!
After completing this mission chain, new players should have a weapon for each slot (primary, sidearm, auxiliary). This will guarantee that new players emerge from the tutorial more battle-ready than before.
Whoa! This fellah means business!
Learn about Physical/Energy Damage and Defense/Resistance by defeating a series of Boss Junkers.
These Junkers are bosses in name only. They can be handled easily with the right equipment.
That doesn't mean they're harmless, though.
Gather their Corrupted Chips and return them to your trainer for your reward!
I think I see the problem: It was set to MURDER!
Your journey isn't over yet! We've moved the alignment selection from the character creation process to the tutorial. Representative NPCs will plead their case and request your pledge of support. If you accept, you will be offered a new mission to complete an automatch battle.
After you complete the battle (win or lose, all you need to do is complete the battle), turn in the mission, and the gate to Central Station will rise, allowing you to join the rest of the experience EpicDuel community!
Don't forget your "One Small Step" achievement!
Legro Inmortuorum Poster
And now a word from HeroMart!
HeroMart is proud to offer an Art Nouveau (French for New Art) inspired poster of Dage and his undead legion! This new 24” x 36” high quality poster by Diozz featuring Dage and his undead army will be a great way to make your room feel more alive! Or rather undead.
Order the poster soon, because I don't think anything this awesome is going to stay on HeroMart's shelves for long! Did I mention it also includes a mysterious new blade, Dage's Desolation, in EpicDuel?
December 21, 2012
Wear a Yeti!
Just a friendly reminder that the Are You Yeti shirts are now available at HeroMart! The Yetis are not currently available in game, so the shirt might be the quickest way to get your hands on a Yeti, particularly the new Dark Yeti!
The Dark Yeti offers an energy-based alternative to the classic Baby Yeti's attacks. When Omega goes live, you will be able to upgrade it to the Omega Dark Yeti!
Along with a Baby Yeti and Dark Yeti in EpicDuel, you will also receive a Baby Yeti Battle Pet in AQW!
Shirts are a real limited quantity item. There are only so many, so once they're gone, we're very unlikely to reprint more.
Get a shirt, save three yetis! Can't beat that! Mr. Scrabbles approves!
Happy Holidays! I look forward to continuing Omega development in the frosty Northlands.
December 06, 2012
Now it can be told: the official release date for Omega is
Changes to NPCs
Today we wanted to go over some changes to how NPC fights will work in Omega. We want NPCs to fill the purposes of:
1) training or testing builds
2) gaining credits
3) furthering missions and the storyline
They currently fill some other purposes that we want to move away from, including padding battle records, faction farming, and leveling.
Some of the changes are as follows:
We know there are still many questions about what we’re doing with Enhancements, but we’re not quite ready to talk about this in-depth yet. We will say now that the new system will allow for much greater customization than before, and will involve equipping passive effects and active abilities to your weapons.
Additionally, we will be providing compensation for those that have enhanced weapons in the current system. We’ll provide more specifics soon.
We would like to kick off our new development phase with not one, but TWO promotional packages. These designs were inspired by devoted EpicDuel player and aspiring artist TrizzzCentrino! You can choose from the Omega Obliteror set, which features an energy sword plus a mutating weapon!
OR if physical damage is more your thing, you may select the Omega Onslaughter!
All of these weapons will offer 2 new weapon skills (one active, one passive) to give you an edge in Omega. We will explain what these skills are and what they do as soon as we finalize the details!
Speaking of promotions: Check out Heromart's Coming Soon page for details on the upcoming "Are You Yeti" shirt! This epic garment will come with not one, but TWO yetis for you to play with for the upcoming release!
The Frozen North
Alydriah has been up to no good in her captured territory. However, there is one bastion of hope in this shattered land:
Titan stands watch from his mountain lair in Frysteland. Many displaced Krampus have taken shelter at the foot of this mountain fortress, seeking some respite from constant harassment from Legion troops. Alydriah is smart enough to steer clear of this mysterious refuge, but not so fearful that she wouldn't taunt the gods of Delta V through more indirect means. What new cybernetic terrors has Alydriah created in during the Legion's occupation of this region? Would Alydriah burn Frysteland to the ground just to annoy Titan? How many cheeseburgers do you think Titan has hidden up there?
I guess you'll have to login to find out!
Easy on the Eyes
As we mentioned earlier, the early game experience is getting a drastic overhaul, starting with the login and class selection screens. We will also be refreshing the look of the base armors and styles to reflect this graphical overhaul. This might not be tremendously exciting to our veteran players, but it will make EpicDuel 1000% more appealing to new players, expanding the total number of active players, which means more opponents for you!
WHY NO UPDATE?!
With all the changes to the database structure and game code, we literally cannot release before it's ready. Also, preparing a weekly release would divert time away from development on Omega, and we cannot spare a second at this point!
On that note -- Code Sorcerer, away!
October 24, 2012
In my part of the world, the leaves are changing, cool air is blowing on one’s face, everyone’s wearing (or, if you’re me, knitting) sweaters hats and gloves, and everything is pumpkin-flavored. Yes, it’s autumnn, and with the cool weather comes Nature’s bounty: a harvest. Delta V’s Harvest Festival is also soon approaching, with the return of last year’s Harvest content. This includes missions, the Harvest Husk, and the Harvest Reaper and Soul Reaper. These powerful limited rare mutating weapons include a 13% chance to attack your enemy with a rain of gourdy pain with the Jack O Fire skill!
The Harvest is also pulling up some new Harvest content, such as the Cardboard Crusader. This armor will be available for credits... though you probably shouldn’t wear it outside in the rain.
To commemorate the Harvest of Souls, Snork is forging an item commemorating his people’s history. What is it? Well, he hasn’t told me, but he did say that the most valiant warriors who can prove themselves in armed combat with him will have a chance to hold this mysterious rare item!
Oh My Gourd!
The amazing Charfade just revealed that she's created a big ol' pile of pumkins for your home decorating pleasure! Get your home ready for Trick and/or Treating this Friday!
I Can Has Suggestions, Plz?
But that’s not all! After sifting through the bounty of awesome player suggestions, the Player Suggestion Shop will once again be open! Everyone whose item was chosen will receive their item in their inventory (regardless of cost, level, or class) and the Epic Artist achievement!*
*Massive apologies, but the Player Suggestion Shop will take a bit more time to finish. We tried to work through some technical difficulties, but ultimately couldn't finish it for today. We will have it out next Wednesday, fittingly enough, for Halloween! Stay tuned for more previews on Nightwraith's Twitter.
The Spooky Head contest is still going on, but you’re running out of time- the contest ends this Friday, just before midnight Saturday. More details here: http://forums2.battleon.com/f/tm.asp?m=20723387
A Balanced Diet
Speaking of the forums, you may have noticed that, rather than cramming all balance discussions into one topic in EDGD, we’ve implemented a Balance Discussion subforum in the EpicDuel section of the AEF. If you’ve been on the fence about joining the AEF, now seems to be the best time to do so! http://forums2.battleon.com/f/tt.asp?forumid=415
Cover Your Torso!
As the cold autumn winds start to blow, now is the perfect time to acquire some coverings for your torsos! To help with this, HeroMart is introducing a new shirt to commemorate our 10 Year Anniversary as a company. Among the bonuses this shirt will give in the other games, in EpicDuel you will receive an exclusive sword, Artix's Triumph.
Something About a Dragon?
In addition to new shirts, HeroMart will also be stocking One-Eyed Doll's latest Album, "Something About a Dragon" which includes music from AE's games!
As an in-game reward for purchasing the CD, in EpicDuel you will receive both One-Eyed Axes! If you missed them in-game, this is the perfect opportunity to pick them up! If you already have them, you'll still have an awesome CD and two weapons you can resell for bonus currency!
Onward! To Victory!
So, what’s next? After this week, we’ll be plunging into building the next phase of EpicDuel, along with a pretty cool winter event (will it involve yetis? Quite possibly!) and Nightwraith promised to have some preview art up for you guys. Obviously, we’re all very excited about this prospect and we hope our players will be as well! :D
Revamped Mercenary concept by Thyton!
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.
November 03, 2011
An Exuberant Design Notes
Hi there EpicDuelists, I am super-excited about all of the awesome things coming your way in the week(s) ahead! I don’t even have a witty intro paragraph- let’s dive right in!
As awesome and dedicated as our players at or near the level cap are, the vast majority of our players are in the lower levels, so to give new players a more dynamic EpicDuel experience, Charfade’s made a whole arsenal of low-level bazookas for your dueling pleasure! And I’ve written a bunch of new quests- available from Exile Soldier, Habuki, Steve 2.0, Junker 2.0, and ConductorBot- that should help lower-level players get their duel on! If you’re inexperienced, you cannot pass up these sweet rewards!
High-level? We’ll have some nice stuff for you too, especially with our next minievent. Although I suppose you could do these missions as well, there’s certainly nobody stopping you. And if there was, it would be the level 3 guards.
Bonus! Celebrate Guy Fawkes Day a day early with these festive, but sinister masks! "Remember, remember, the fifth of November, Gunpowder Treason and Plot"
Harvest Wrap-Up, Harvest Wrap-Up! Let’s finish our Autumn cheer, ‘cause soon Winter will be here!
Harvest gear, quests, etc. will be available until 11/11/11- what’s so important about that day, you ask? Besides the fact that it’s made entirely of elevens,
I’m not sure what makes your face implode, but that’s how this is gonna work.
We’ll be working on a new, experimental feature coming soon to EpicDuel in the coming weeks. I’ll be working very closely with Nythera for this, and I’m actually not too sure how it’ll work yet, so watch this space as we hammer out the kinks!
As we’re leaving the Harvest behind, we’re all ecstatic to get started working on the next big holiday. Even in the Dead of Winter, Citizens of Delta V are still able to find reasons to celebrate, and Players will have much to celebrate, since we’ll be able to have full quest chains for this event!
We’ll also be introducing players to new people and a new (to the Players) world. During this event, you’ll be introduced to new allies (and new enemies!) and have a chance to permanently affect the planet’s balance by your actions!
If you follow Nightwraith on Twitter, you’ve been seeing some of his concepts for the new enemies you’ll be facing- the SnowHazards and Frostbiters. The SnowHazards are large and keep warm underneath their thick layers of soft, thick fur, while the Frostbiters are slender and well adapted to navigating the bitter cold ice floes. Both of these creatures were created much like the Hazards- wild creatures were corrupted by Legion scientists, and overtook the wild populations within a few generations. You’ll be called upon to challenge these horrifying Beasts soon enough.
It’s truly incredible to be making something that inspires so much creativity, and seeing the characters you imagined come to life. Nightwraith just showed me his sketches for some of the characters I’d created, and it’s a truly unbelievable and unique experience to see how he’s interpreted my words and brought them to life.
We’ve also been working on a special gift for the players for this release, but this is one we’ll keep tight under wraps!
Mod Packs and Artix Logo t-shirts available at HeroMart
Is your torso suffering from perpetual lack of coverage? Do you need a t-shirt? Maybe one that has a dragon logo on it? If so, then- by golly- you’re in luck! Artix Entertainment Logo t-shirts are now available at HeroMart. For $19.99 plus shipping, you too can look as cool as Dage the Evil!
In addition, the Artix Entertainment Trading Card Game Chaos Mod Pack and DoomWood Mod Pack are now available at both Toys-R-Us and HeroMart. When both packs are purchased, players earn the powerful Paladin Slayer class in Adventure Quest Worlds!
Child’s Play 2011
Tis the season for generosity, and yesterday marked the official launch of Child’s Play Charity’s Holiday Season. Founded by Mike Krahulik and Jerry Holkins of Penny Arcade fame in 2003, the charity has sent close to nine million dollars in toys, games, and books to children’s hospitals worldwide. The Charity works in two ways: donors can view a hospital’s wish list on Amazon and purchase a gift for the hospital directly, or they can donate directly to the charity via PayPal. When gamers unite, they can make a huge difference, and we hope that some of our players with room in their hearts can spare a thought for a sick child.
Baby, It’s Cold Outside
Insects have limited ability to regulate their internal temperature, and have several mechanisms for surviving in low temperatures. One such mechanism utilized by insects and other arthropods is diapause- a state of dormancy characterized by the seizure of certain metabolic processes and lack of responsiveness to external stimuli. During the induction phase which occurs at a genetically predetermined stage of life, the insect is particularly sensitive to external stimuli in the form of light, temperature, or food chemicals. The Preparation phase follows the induction phase and is characterized by storage of food molecules within the insect’s body to prepare for Initiation of diapause. This is when morphological development ceases, and other physilogical changes take place to prepare the insect’s body for freezing cold. This may be accompanied by behavioral changes, such as the aggregating behavior of Monarch butterflies, who cluster together for warmth following a mass migration. The period of diapause is called the Maintenance phase, and when environmental conditions are once again favorable for growth and development.
May 03, 2011
Here at Delta V, we’re hard at work making everything nice and shiny for Spring! Firstly, if there’s anything EpicDuelists hate, it’s laaaaag. Well, Titan’s been combatting the lag- I’m not exactly sure how, but I assume that it has something to do with feeding the server hamsters pure caffeine. The performance improvements will have the added bonus of stopping would-be hackers in their tracks. Meanwhile, the Biodome is getting a long-needed graphical facelift.
Also improving the Biodome’s appearance is the new NPC Cinderella. A scientist studying the unique and precious remaining life on Delta V (for example, the Bio Hazards aren’t mean, they’re just hungry!), she spends most of her time in the Biological Preserve, collecting samples and conducting experiments on their brains. Best not get on her bad side, or you might be the subject of her next journal article...
Administrator 12 needs things, but he’s often too busy with bureaucratic work to get anything done. So, he’s begun farming out the work- to you! Hunt down Oz and “persuade” him to give you a key card...
Also, don’t throw away that red gem or golden bullets- they’ll be useful for future missions in which they can be exchanged for awesome rewards!
Coming very soon to HeroMart, it’s the brand new EpicDuel Poster designed by the talented Randor the Red! Give EpicDuel a special place in your heart (and on your wall) by purchasing it directly from HeroMart!
If that weren’t enough, everyone who buys an EpicDuel poster will get the Bionic Bear Bike! This is an exclusive rare which is ONLY available with purchase of the poster. But that's not all: we'll also be offering an in-game version on the poster for your Epic dwellings in addition to a nice fat credit bonus!
We'll be offering signed and unsigned posters for all your Epic-decor needs. This is a limited poster run, so you would be wise to pick one up as soon as possible.
*Poster frame not included.
We’re developing few new features to make missions more fun and functional. We’ve fixed the level requirement bug for missions, and we’re introducing a new Mission Log feature. I know I get annoyed at having to constantly check back to find out I still need one more win, so the Mission Tracker will make all of our lives easier. Now you’ll be able to see:
You’ll also be able to abandon a mission without going back to the NPC, or starting a new mission.
This also allows us to build a prerequisite system for missions. Simply put, we’re implementing a system where unlocking the next step of a mission requires that you’ve completed the step before it.