May 16, 2013
The air in the Biological Preserver has been purified by the combined efforts of 1000s of player and Davarril, the rogue Archivist, has been defeated. This Friday, the final spoils of war will be revealed as four new terrifying weapons:
Available in Lime Green...
And Nightmare Berry Flavors
These items will be available in limited quantities on Davarril. We will also be issuing a final restock on the other LQS items in the war shops.
You've Got Mail 2: Mail Harder
We've made a second pass on the mail system that was introduced last week. This week you will be able to send messages to your friends and fellow Faction members! Don't worry about spam -- the list is restricted to only those on your buddy list and Faction list. You can send a single message to up to 20 recipients!
Planning in-game meetings has never been easier!
A New War Brews
Part of this week has been devoted to preparation of the next grand event. The Legion and Exile forces have been engaged in a stalemate since last summer, when The Lawman and his fellow Exiles stormed the Delta Vault and seized a secret army of hibernating androids, taking the Legion administrator Silas captive in the process.
Now, with Davarril subdued and no external threats to postpone further conflicts, the drums of war are once again echoing across Delta V. Legion and Exile forces are rallying around a new battlefield to determine the fate of the planet.
Legion and Exile smiths are working double-time for the war effort.
Not the best neighborhood.
Which side will you choose? Will you fight for freedom with the Exiles or fight for order with the Legion? The time to choose is quickly approaching.
May 09, 2013
Arborgeddon's Final Round
Get Your Game Face On!
This is it! The final round! The atmosphere has been purified and Davarril is a sitting duck...er plant...robot...thingie. The point is, you can attack him directly without worrying about being infected by his spores -- involuntarily at least.
Davarril is carrying a huge and terrifying experiment, the Botanical Borg. The unique twist with this beastly bot is you don't just summon it, you become it! Unleash a devastating Spore Blast or the new multi-target Spore Bombardment attack! I'm not sure why Davarril is selling this monstrous creation. Maybe it's a sneaky, last ditch attempt to lure you over to the dark side?
Trizzzy has done it again!
That's right! Dage the Evil has returned to Delta V! Well, I guess he never left, but he's bringing two amazing new items crafted in the nightmarish forges of his Undead Legion domain. Remember, we are not responsible for any corruption of your soul that may result from using these bazookas.
Dage Weapons don't have safety switches.
Like all of Dage's other items, these will be Limited Quantity, so be sure to dash to Dage's location in the Minetower as soon as we go live with the new release to secure your 'zooka!
You've Got Mail!
While you've been occupied cracking botanical skulls (figuratively, of course), we've been building a new in-game mail system. In this iteration, you will be able to receive important system messages and account updates.
This feature has a number of benefits:
No spam allowed!
Again, when this features first goes live, you will only be able to receive messages. We intend to include the ability to send mail from player-to-player as soon as next week. This is the first iteration of the EpicDuel mail system, so be sure to let us know what features you would like to see (or not see) in future updates!
Changing of the Guard
I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate one of our Mods on a very special promotion. Our veteran Mod, Alley Cat, will be ascending to the role of Head Moderator while Cinderella focuses on writing and pursuing her PhD (congratulations!). It's a big responsibility leading a large team of veteran and new Moderators, but we're confident Alley Cat is up to the challenge!
These next few weeks leading into summer we will be focusing on developing and implementing major features to improve the quality and longevity of EpicDuel. None of these will be as ground-shattering or time consuming as Omega, but they will be oft requested features such as an improved mission interface, a core shop, and improved Faction Wars. This summer should be very exciting as these key features are implemented over the Omega framework to create a dynamic, action-packed game experience!
May 02, 2013
Davarril thought taking over Delta V would be a walk in the park, but the diligent duelists have kept his infestation confined. Players are working day and night collecting purified spores to heal the Biological Preserve and take the fight to Davarril himself. Once the War Bar reaches 100%, there will be nothing stopping you from delivering justice to the rogue Archivist.
You'll have to tackle this challenge alone, but if you succeed you will be rewarded with a Arbor Annihilator achievement! Beware, Davarril has many tricks up his moldy, metallic sleaves so this fight will not be easy!
Meanwhile, Cinderella's war shop will be supplied with a shipment of new "Infested" armors and an awesome Botanical Bike, designed by Trizzzy!
Also, rumor has it that Davarril is tempting players over to the dark side by offering a Botanical Key for sale. This will allow you to access the war shop without collecting the required spores and completing the required mission.
Collecting spores is a dangerous job, but somebody has to do it. It makes sense that those who are especially adept at collection should receive a reward for their efforts.
These tiered achievements will be awarded for in 10, 30, and 100 Purified Spores. Do you have what it takes to become a Superior Spore Hunter?
April 09, 2013
Arborgeddon on the Horizon
Spring is officially here and Delta V is unusually peaceful. The bunnies have their eggs...er fuel containment pods so they can formally begin work on their new spaceship and plan another daring escape. Alydriah has been expelled from Frysteland by the mysterious force known as The Endless and the Krampus people, although still under Legion rule, no longer live in fear of extermination squads. It would seem that the vicious wars of the past are all but distant memories. However, on Delta V, calm is the perfect environment for evil to thrive.
Something wicked is stirring in the Biological Preserve deep, deep within the forbidding jungles. Bio Hazards, once the top of the food chain, are being snatched up by the dozens. The Archivists have an idea of who is responsible:
This renegade Archivists oversaw the care of the plant life in the Biological Preserve. For years, it worked to restore the flora across Delta V to undo the damage caused by Baelius' aggressive mining operations. Davarril was able to make great strides in advancing the evolution of Delta V plants, making them resistant to radiation, extreme temperatures, industrial toxins, and, most importantly, he made them smart!
Unfortunately, one particular strain was little too smart...a little too devious. This plant overwhelmed Davarril's mind set the wayward Archivist on the path of destroying all animal life on Delta V. Archivists are sworn to preserve life, but the clever plant was able to convince its host that it could preserve plantlife only by destroying all animals...or by mutating them into animal/plant hybrids!
To combat this deadly new threat, you'll need equipment specially designed for handling such situations. A new war is brewing in the Biological Preserve, and it will be up to you and your friends to stop it from spreading!
Since we need extra time for development, this event will not be going live this week, but we will keep you updated with our progress along the way!
Reporting for Duty!
Last week and earlier today, we rolled out with a brand new reporting feature. Our Mods are now able to receive and investigate reports more efficiently than ever, but we need your help to make sure we have the best possible quality for reports. We just added new Mods to our roster, but even they can't be everywhere at once!
To report someone outside of battle, click on his or her character and click the report icon. This will open a pop-up box that will ask you to select your reason for reporting and a brief description of the offense. Please provide good details in your report or we may not be able to take action. Also remember that inappropriate comments in a report are frowned upon and can get you in trouble!
To report someone in battle, click the check box next to the word "Reporting." This will turn the little bubble next to each player's name into a report icon.
Click the report icon next to the offender's name to bring up a pop-up box. Select a reason for the report and enter a brief, but detailed description of the offense. Please refrain from reporting someone just to spite them for outperforming you in battle.
With your help, we can make EpicDuel a clean, safe, and fun environment for everyone for years to come!
April 04, 2013
Nice Job Eggheads!
It seems you all have done great work collecting eggs...I mean egg-shaded fuel containment pods...for the Lagomorphs. The bunnies are so pleased, they're adding even more to Brachylagus' secret shop! Don't have enough eggs? All you need to do is fight! Now hop to it!
The new and improved Bunny Borg v2 by Trizzzy awaits you in Brachylagus' shop! Trizzzy is really shaping up to be a phenomenal EpicDuel artist, isn't he? Quantities are limited so better get those Bunny Eggs fast!
Farewell to Frysteland
You have successfully defeated the Elite Yeti and sent Alydriah packing. Although Frysteland is free of her cruelty, the Legion still reigns supreme, with Edgar Boothe as the acting governor. Alydriah does not take defeat or betrayal lightly, but even she knows to steer clear of extra-dimensional void gods. The Endless, the spirit you summoned with the help of Rabblefroth and Edgar Boothe to defeat the Elite Yeti, remains tethered to Delta V by a Summoning Stone. But for how long?
With the release Friday, the Frysteland storyline missions will be leaving. You will, however, still be able to train Baby Yetis and Dark Yetis up to the level of an Omega Yeti or Omega Dark Yeti through missions or purchasing the growth serums outright.
Hot Off the Presses!
Be sure to check out the latest offering from Heromart, a 72-page sketchbook featuring art from your favorite Artix Entertainment artists, including yours truly and Charfade. This labor of love is packed with never-before-seen art and fascinating insights into the creative process. Even if you've never played an AE game before (If you haven't, why are you reading this post?), this is an excellent addition to any "Art of..." book library.
As if getting an amazing book weren't enough, each purchase comes with unique weapons in AQW, DragonFable, MechQuest, Oversoul, and, of course, EpicDuel. Pick up a copy today and receive the Nightsketch and Charsketch swords! Sketch On!
The results are in and we would like to congratulate the first batch of winners of the EpicDuel Omega screenshot contest. Selecting the best of the best shots was challenging and we had to disqualify several due to improper cropping and insufficient resolutions. We made some exceptions for especially creative or well-time screenshots. We were so impressed by the results in-fact, that we're DOUBLING the rewards for each tier and adding Varium to the top two tiers!
The following contestants will receive the Epic Photographer Achievement along with 200 Varium and 2000 Credits!
Aura of Destiny
Mage of Dage
One Winged Angel
xX Vampirul xX
The following contestants had 5-9 accepted screenshots and will receive the Mega Photographer Achievement along with 200 Varium and 5000 Credits!
Xx SKYNET xX
The following contestants had 10 or more accepted screenshots and will receive the Omega Photographer Achievement along with 200 Varium and 7000 Credits!
Smackie El Frog
Congratulations to the winners and thank you everyone else for participating. If you were disqualified due to a technicality, some quick Google-fu can reveal how to take and crop a screenshot. This won't be the last screenshot contest so stay tuned for news of the next one! EpicDuel is always changing, and we need the best images possible to show the world how awesome it is!
I would like to take this opportunity to welcome the new Moderators and Testers into the EpicDuel fold. We received hundreds of applications, but we managed to whittle the list down to the best of the best candidates. Great thanks are due to Lycus and Cinderella and for the help with the process. If not for them, I'd still be reading applications! The following Moderators and Testers have been trained and are ready to serve you as soon as possible.
The Joker X
Thank you again for your patience through the application and interview process. I'm confident you'll help us make EpicDuel a safer and more bug-free experience!
March 28, 2013
The Egg Hunt Begins!
EpicDuel's resident interstellar, sentient rabbits need your help to recover the fuel supply of their demolished ship. This fuel is stored within containers that closely resemble eggs. You can collect these eggs by winning PvP battles across Delta V for this limited time event. Visit any bunny on Delta V and click the "Egg Hunt" button to view your progress. You can use this interface to jump to any bunny and complete his or her mission for BIG rewards! Collect all the eggs to claim a special Egg Head Achievement!
The bunnies aren't taking any chances as they come out of hiding, which is why they've constructed two new bots with an amazing new ability! You can purchase them from Capensis, Myxoma, Lepus, and Mr. Cottontail. Brachylagus has his bots tucked away in his secret shop along with his super secret arsenal!
These bots come with a powerful attack called "Color Blast" that humiliates and hinders your opponents. One hit will paint the target's armor pastel colors, which allows Brachylagus to lock on his or her position. If they issue a strike attack for three rounds after being painted, a secret bunny artillery battery will rain down a hail of egg-shaped death!
Collecting these eggs will yield BIG prizes! They could be as simple as Credits and Battle Tokens or as awesome as a new seasonal rare armor or an arsenal of new weapons designed by fan-favorite Trizzzy!
Hurry up and collect those eggs!
Visit Titan in his icy Frysteland home to collect his silly seasonal rares from years past.
March 19, 2013
Epic Egg Hunt
Spring is very, very near (or at least it feels that way if you're near the Lab) and something is stirring beneath the Bio Dome.
The Bunnies Return!
Last year, the interstellar, sentient rabbits that were stranded on Delta V years ago attempted to make an escape, with disastrous results! In the intervening time, they helped defend the Archives from an incursion of the Mechachillids and patiently planned their next escape attempt. To bypass the force field that surrounds Delta V, the rabbit leader, Brachylagus will need to recover the fuel supply of his demolished ship. This fuel is contained within specially designed containers that closely resemble eggs.
Scattered across Delta V will be a sinister selection of eggs for you to collect. How will you collect these? Battle, of course! You didn't think you could just pick those off the ground, did you? That would be crazy! Collecting these eggs will unlock several awesome rewards with the best being a super-secret shop with never-before-seen weapons!
We'll need a bit extra time to deliver this jam-packed mega release so we're expecting to deliver it on Thursday, March 28!
What About This Week?
This week we will be prepping the artwork and coding the event for next week, but we are still planning to roll a release this week with balance adjustments and additional bug fixes.
Ballistic Bunny Bot
The bunny gang knows that gathering eggs through battle will not be easy, so they've constructed a fierce, mechanical bunny bot to assist you in your duels. This bot is small, but should not be understimated!
Special thanks to Disturbed and Trizzzy for helping out with the designs of these bunny-themed weapons of mass destruction!
The hunt for moderators should be wrapping up very soon. Our final interviews have concluded and we're making a final pass selecting the candidates. There were a lot of qualified candidates so picking the best of the best has been a great challenge. Thank you for your patience during this process!
March 14, 2013
Spring Is Here! Again!
The icy grip of Winter is beginning to wane on Delta V, giving way to green, life-giving vegetation. However, Delta V is a dangerous world, with dangerous creatures, and even more dangerous plants. Based on extensive studies in the Biological Preserve, Delta V scientists have developed new weapons known as Botanical Battlegear.
These mutating items come in physical and energy damage variants and they will be available with the 10,000 Varium package! This package comes with TWO mutating weapons plus an exclusive core: Growth Serum. This is an active core that increases your character's height while buffing the base Support. Cast a shadow of fear across the battlefield!
Azrael's Anguish and Annihilator package will not be leaving this weekend, but it won't be around much longer!
Spring Rares Return!
Seasonal rare weapons will be returning. Check out Charfade, Naomi, and Valestra (Frysteland) to get them!
Winter / Frysteland rares will be leaving until next year! The missions and Heartbreaker / Azrael weapons will remain a bit longer to let everyone participate in the epic clash against the Elite Yeti!
Since we released Omega, Titan and Rabblefroth have been hard at work cleaning up bugs and trying to optimize performance, but that's a challenging task to do in parallel with new content releases. This week, Practel was in the Lab to personally help Titan smash many outstanding bugs. Check out this video on our Official Youtube Channel to see our development in-progress!
Despite that progress, it's important to remember that smashing bugs is an ongoing process. We can't fix bugs if we don't have enough details to determine why they are occurring. Artix.com is making great strides toward an improved bug tracker, but for the time being, the AE forums is our primary source for bug reports.
Often in game development, something will seem like a great idea when it's initially conceived, but upon closer examination loses it's luster. Dead Battery seemed like an interesting idea coneptually, but in testing the effect was very confusing. It looked more like a bug than a feature. For the time being, we are tabling Dead Battery until we can rethink and rework it into a better, more useful, more clear core.
We're always on the lookout for new core ideas from the community. Post your ideas here!
Wow! Thanks to you guys, we now have an absolutely staggering amount of screenshots to show off Omega! Although we'll always need screenshots, we will be placing a hold on the contest starting Monday 18th @ 6:00PM EST. At that point, we will begin awarding prizes to the best entries and prepare them for use on the EpicDuel website. We will allow for more entries again in the near future, but right now the amount is overwhelming!
If you haven't entered the contest alread, you still have some time to post your shots!
More to Come!
March 07, 2013
The gauntlet has been thrown: Battle Alydriah's champion, the fearsome Elite Yeti, for the fate of Frysteland! But you won't be able to do it alone! Complete the final quest chain, starting at Rabblefroth, to summon the Shadow of the Endless, a powerful spirit from the Void who can help you expel Alydriah's terror from Frysteland for good! Summoning such power comes at a price, though. Are you prepared for the consequences?
You will need to have completed the previous Frysteland quest chain up to the Summoning Stone to engage in this mission chain. Visit Edgar Boothe or King Alaric (both in Frysteland) to being the Frysteland missions if you haven't done so already. The Yeti training missions are not necessary to complete these new missions.
We are in the process of outlining a brand new mission system! We are conducting a lot of in-house playtesting and have determined that our existing mission system is overwhelmingly confusing. It should not take paragraphs of guides and Wiki entries to help even experienced players navagate a chain so all of our existing missions are getting a much needed overhaul. This confusion no doubt leads many to neglect missions altogether, causing them to miss out on plot developments and all the great mission rewards! This new system will soon be revealed and go live within the next few weeks.
Golden Yeti Tournament Conclusion!
When EpicDuel Omega 1.5.5 goes live*, the the top 100 competitors in the Yeti Tournament will win the coveted Golden Yeti! Additionally, the top 100 will win an achievement based on their final rank in the tournament. Congratulations, champions -- you've earned it!
We've learned a lot from this initial foray into organized competitions. We'd love to do more in the future with numerous refinements based on the knowledge gained from the Golden Yeti Tournament. If you didn't win, don't worry -- there will be more competitions, better competitions, on the horizon.
*Likely later than we expected, but we will update you in case of a delay. Follow our Twitter accounts for the most up-to-date details! The tournament officially ended ~ 10:50PM EST.
The Forging of Azrael's Armaments Video!
Keep checking EpicDuel's Official Youtube channel for a time-lapse video showcasing the creation of Azrael's Anguish and Azrael's Annihilator. The video will go live shortly after Friday's release. Rumor has it that there's a super-secret prize code hidden within the video. Watch closely or you'll miss it!
Visit Rabblefroth in the Wasteland who is seeking answers to yet another deep and meaningful question!
Balance Adjustments and Bug Fixes!
New and improved balance and numerous bug fixes! These will be covered in greater detail in the Patch Notes.
February 28, 2013
The Tournament Continues
We are already on the cusp of the second week of the Golden Yeti Tournament and the competition is extremely fierce! There is still one more week to go so don't give up yet! Any breaks the leaders take is a chance for latecomers to swoop in a snatch one of the top 100 spots!
Do you see your name up there? Congratulations! But be afraid! Those top positions may be difficult to secure as the tournament continues!
Need some diversity in your build? Gear up with 3 new cores this Friday!
Nanosteel Armor: Critical hits getting you down? This passive armor core effectively reduces the damage reduction of all critical hits inflicted on your character!
*Dead Battery: Applies a curse to an enemy that causes that target's remaining energy to go to you if the enemy is defeated while the curse is active. This means that if you apply the curse to an enemy, and they still have 20 energy after dying, that energy is added to your own pool!* This works even if your ally is the one to defeat the target.
*Dead Battery still requires some more testing, but we do not wish to push the release any later. We will continue testing this core after the release and hopefully make it available next week!
Plasma Meteor: Meteor shower just got an energy damage based equivalent!
Sneaky, Sneaky Azrael
For those that missed it last week, we introduced two new Azrael Scythes last week on the Alydroid. These were limited quantity, so of course they sold out very quickly. This Friday, we will restock twice (depending on demand). Once at 10 AM EST, and again at 5 PM EST. We will also restock the Dage rares at these times. We will only restock if the quantities are depleted.
EpicDuel Turns Four!
It’s hard to believe that four years ago EpicDuel had just launched it’s first public Alpha. It’s even harder to comprehend how the game has changed since this momentous event. In that time, we’ve joined with Artix Entertainment, gone through four development phases, released thousands of weapons, developed countless features, and hosted over 100 million battles. Now we are in the midst of the most exciting evolution in EpicDuel’s history: Omega!
Mod Application Deadline
The application deadline is almost upon us, but it's not too late to submit! Please send your COMPLETE application before 12 P.M. E.S.T. this Friday (March 1st) to: EDCallForMods@artix.com
Lycus and Cinderella are still hard at work narrowing down the list of qualified applicants, but unfortunately, due to the volume of mail, we will not be able to respond to all of you to explain why you were not selected.
Balance and Bugs
To round out the release, we're making some adjustments to balance, targeting the rise in power of Support builds and some more tweaks to help classes that are underperforming. We have some larger changes in mind to help with balance, but we don't want to do anything too drastic while the Tournament is still live.
There will also be a number of crucial bug fixes. For a complete, detailed list of the fixes and changes, check Rabble's patch notes shortly after the release goes live!
February 19, 2013
The Golden Yeti Cometh
The time has come for the Golden Yeti Tournament to begin (almost)! Along with another balance update, this week we are poised to finally begin the tournament! The event will begin as soon as we go live with the 1.5.3 update on Friday. We're not quite ready to give a specific time, but we will keep you updated on our progress.
Participants in the tournament must own the Omega Ticket, which they would have received through preorders. Owning more than one will not confer any special bonuses. Points in the tournment can be earned through PvP victories. 2v2 and Juggernaut fights are worth more than 1v1 fights.
Again, if you own the Omega Ticket, you don't need to do anything further to participate. Visit one of the Golden Yeti statues to track your progress and climb your way to victory!
Scheduled for Deletion
This Friday we will also be doing a database sweep, cleaning out thousands of characters that are over a year old, level 1, and never upgraded. We cannot reserve a name for anyone in advance so be ready to login Friday as soon as the release goes live to claim your name!
Moderator Submission Deadline
To date, we've received hundreds of applications for Moderators and Testers! It's great that so many of you are interested in helping us (whether you meet the qualifications or not). However, the cutoff for submissions is drawing near. Please send your COMPLETE application before 12 P.M. E.S.T. next Friday (March 1st) to: EDCallForMods@artix.com
Lycus and Cinderella are hard at work narrowing down the list of qualified applicants, but unfortunately, due to the volume of mail, we will not be able to respond to all of you to explain why you were not selected.
"Parker! Get me pictures of Omega!"
A new contest has appeared in the BattleOn Forums! As some of you may know, the screenshot section of the EpicDuel website is overdue for an update. We really want to update the website with some amazing new screenshots to show a brighter and much more updated side of the game. In order to do this we want the coolest, most kick-butt screenshots you have! Anything from a funny moment in the game to a full on battle would be great! You can even use screenshots showcasing some of the new features of Omega, like cores and stat editing. This contest is going to be a little bit different from past contests, however. Instead of having a set deadline, this contest will be on-going and you can submit as many screenshots as you want. Some of you may be wondering what the rewards are if your screenshot gets used, so here they are:
The contest will run from Tuesday, February 19th until whenever the developers and I see fit. Awards will be handed out periodically when we have gathered a nice crop of new screenshots. We have no set limit of winners. The rules and guidelines are short and to the point, but we advise you to follow them otherwise your entry will be disqualified.
Have fun and good luck to everyone!
February 14, 2013
Break Some Hearts
...or eat them!
This week, celebrate Valentine's Day, EpicDuel style! In addition to returning Heartbreaker seasonal rares at the Alydroid (now relocated to Frysteland), we are introducing a new Varium package with 4 new Azrael weapons: a physical and energy version of Azrael's Anguish (sidearm) and Azrael's Annihilator (auxiliary). Crafted by otherworldly engineers, these devastating weapons of warfare come equipped with new active skill cores.
The sidearms come with Azrael's Will, which overwhelms the target with an uncontrollable urge to strike with a normal attack. This gives the owner of the sidearm an opportunity to block and avoids guaranteed unblockable damage from skills and weapons.
The auxiliaries come with Azrael's Torment, which devastates opponents with a blast of corrupting energy that diminishes the effectiveness of buffs.
These weapons are only available with the 10k Varium package.
Again, the old rares will be returning (along with some new additions!) to the Alydroid relocated to Alydriah's Spire in Frysteland.
With the new promo package we will be trying a new rarity/availability paradigm. Starting with the Azrael gear, promotional package items will only be available through the 10k Varium package upon their introduction to the game. However, they would be tagged and seasonal and be available in game the next time that season comes around. This means that the new Azrael gear will only be available with the new promotional package this year, but next year it will appear in game as a seasonal rare.
Development phase promotions would be exempt from this paradigm since development phases are not seasonal. This means that the Omega gear will never be available in-game.
As mentioned in previous Design Notes, those with enhancements on items in their inventory prior to Omega received 30% of their spent enhancement Varium and 10% of their spent enhancement Credits. However, we did not make it clear that your enhanced weapons would retain their original resale value as if they still had enhancements equipped at the normal 15% sellback rate.
Mathematically, this means if you spent 1000 Varium purchasing an item and 1000 Varium enhancing it, your total Varium sellback would be 300 rather than 150 Varium.
AQW Alpha Omega
The Omega release was so big, it has spilled into AQW. Become a PvP champion and tear the toughest monsters asunder with the mighty Alpha Omega class. Look for a complete writeup soon in the AQW Design Notes!
More to Come
Also, we are adding a plethora of bug fixes and balance adjustments which will be covered in detail in the patch notes!
February 12, 2013
Call for Moderators and Testers!
Hey there, EpicDuelists! As you may know (if you don't, then...well I can't help you) Omega is live, but testing is far from over! We are once again looking to expand our team! If you are interested in helping us, please read the official note from Lycus below. We don't have his avatar in yet, so I'm ghost posting for him (shhhhh!).
We are currently in need of a few more people to help out in keeping our game safe and helping with bringing our releases out faster and with fewer bugs! We pride ourselves on making the game with you and for you – many of the AE Staff began as regular players, some even very high up now, now is your chance to join our ranks!
Say what now!?
Due to the increase of players, the loss of a few members of staff and the fact we are still growing, we have need of some more hands to help with the responsibility of keeping the game safe for all players, old and new. We also need more help with the Testing our releases for bugs and helping out in the process of making sure everything is ready to go live!
A few of you may be wondering ‘Do Moderators not test releases?’ – yes Moderators previously have tested releases and some still will – however to up efficiency we have decided to split the team so everyone knows their core position and can concentrate on it as such. A few of you may also now be wondering what each position will entitle and I will gladly tell you:
Testers are a team of dedicated volunteers led by myself who play through releases before they are released, on the development server, helping to find any bugs, suggest changes and make sure the release is ready to go live! They are expected to be online on Thursday and Fridays mainly, but potentially other days, depending on when releases are due to release. This role requires less time to be committed over the week, but more specific times (Preferably 3pm-7pm EST on Thursday/Friday).
Moderators are a team of dedicated volunteers led Cinderella and I who help with in-game issues, deal with people who break the Terms of Service agreement and others of such! In short, they make the game safer and much more fun for everyone. This entitles a position that will expect you to be on most days of the week for a fair amount of time dealing with reports and other things.
Note: Both positions involve a lot of responsibility, if you do not feel you can handle that, and then these posts are not for you. Becoming a Mod or Tester is not as easy or fun as it may seem, it comes with work! However it will look great on your CV (Resume) if you are looking for work experience, and it is always nice to help out a game you enjoy playing so much!
Interested in this Opportunity?
Firstly, I would like to stress how important it is that you are OVER 18. If you are under 18, do not include your age in your application or you start off ‘I am not 18 yet, however…’ you will not even be considered. If you lie about your age, you will be blacklisted from any future Mod application processes regardless of your age then. So if you are under 18, wait, chances will come in the future, do not worry!
What you NEED to include in your email:
Please send your COMPLETE application to: EDCallForMods@artix.com
If you have not included all the above and your application is not complete, you will not be considered. Cinderella and myself will read all applications, so please only send ONE in - we also sadly will not be able to reply to every single email, sorry if you do not hear from us.
If we decide to take you through to an interview we will contact you on the email you sent the email from, so please do try to keep an eye out. We will keep you all updated here on how the search is going and when it is going to end!
***Special Addendum from Charfade and the EpicDuel Youtube Team***
Those of you who have been following our Official EpicDuel Youtube Channel may know that the primary contributors are Moderators. If you would like to be a Moderator or Tester AND would also like to contribute to the Youtube Channel, please address any of the the following attributes in your CV:
The video portion of the application process is entirely optional, but since those creating videos are privy to a great deal of behind-the-scenes development information, we require you pass through the same screening process as those who wish to moderator or test exclusively.
Good luck to you all!
February 08, 2013
Last Tuesday, we finally said a final goodbye to Delta and launched our highly-anticipated Omega phase! Many of you loved the new features and battle dynamics added by cores, while some have voiced concerns about the new balance of power in the game. Those of you who have been with EpicDuel or any other Artix Entertainment game know that these games are constantly evolving. This last release will not be the final release, not by a longshot, and we are already hard at work fixing bugs and making key adjustments to the balance. There is only so much a small team can do, and sometimes it takes 1000s of players to uncover issues.
See? You're helping! Continue to help us with your feedback here!
I would like to extend a nice hearty EpicDuel "Thank You" to all of our moderator and testers (many of whom pulled double duty) who made this release possible. Many of you were plugging away with use, finding critical bugs and making helpful suggestions into the wee hours of the night, going above and beyond the job description. You have done extraordinarily well, and we salute you!
Also worthy of praise is our forum crew, who have helped keep the forums sane leading up to the release and will continue to assist us in gathering feedback and identifying bug reports as we dive headlong into Omega.
I would also like to thank the crew at the EpicDuel Wiki, who work tirelessly and astonishingly fast update all of the new Omega content. We blew up stats and requirements for nearly 1400 of your item entries. Sorry about that!
We can't forget the other teams at Artix Entertainment who have helped us promote Omega and believed in our goals, even through the extended development time. Special thanks go to the Help Team, who help make sure our players' accounts are secure and their owners are happy.
Lastly, but surely not least-ly, I would like to thank our dedicated players. You stuck with us through over 2 months without a release, and I sincerely hope you think Omega was worth the wait. Obviously, it's not perfect, but I can guarantee that it will grow and evolve from here. We're in a better position than ever to deliver exciting new content and change gameplay in ways that were simply impossible before. Thank you for being a part of the best development phase yet!
Many of you have been asking how to upgrade your yeti. I will admit that it can be a bit complicated, so I've created a handy guide to help you train your Yeti into a beastly Omega Yeti! Regardless of which Yet you choose, your journey will begin in Frysteland's interior, just beyond the Frysteland sign.
You will take two different paths depending on which Yeti you wish to upgrade. For Baby Yetis, please see Hulnas the Tamer. For Dark Yetis, you'll want to speak with the Arctic Trainer. There is no way to skip ahead to an Omega Yeti. You must train to a Yeti Warrior before you can train into an Omega Yeti. You cannot undo the process and devolve your Yeti back into a Baby or Dark Yeti so consider your actions carefully!
Speak with Hulnas the Tamer. He will offer a series of missions to train your Baby Yeti into a Baby Yeti Warrior! If you do not wish to purchase a Yeti Serum outright, you may choose to start with "Armored to the Teeth" and work your way to "Beast Versus Boss", which will earn you a free Yeti Serum! You may then complete the final mission to upgrade your Baby Yeti.
If you wish to take the quicker route, you can ignore the first three missions and buy a Yeti Serum from the Tamer and accept and complete the "Juvenalia" mission to morph your Baby Yeti into a Baby Yeti Warrior.
To upgrade your Baby Yeti Warrior into an Omega Baby Yeti, visit Ylwa and start with "Battle Bruised" and work your way to "If It Bacons..." which will reward you with the Omega Serum. You can then complete the process by finishing "Beast's Burden."
As with the upgrade process from Baby to Warrior, you can bypass the first three missions by purchasing an Omega Serum and completing "Beast's Burden. "
Enjoy your Omega Baby Yeti!
Take a look at this handy visual guide form Charfade!
Speak with the Arctic Trainer. He will offer a series of missions to train your Dark Yeti into a Dark Yeti Warrior! If you do not wish to purchase a Yeti Serum outright, you may choose to start with "Warming Up" and work your way to "Is Your Baby Yeti?", which will earn you a free Yeti Serum! You may then complete the final mission to upgrade your Dark Yeti.
If you wish to take the quicker route, you can ignore the first three missions and buy a Yeti Serum from the Trainer and accept and complete the "Abominable? Adorable" mission to morph your Dark Yeti into a Dark Yeti Warrior.
To upgrade your Dark Yeti Warrior into a Omega Dark Yeti, visit Captain Murdoc and start with "The Yetikiller" and work your way to "Frying Flesh" which will reward you with the Omega Serum. You can then complete the process by finishing "Ultimate Baby Yeti."
As with the upgrade process from Dark Yeti to Warrior, you can bypass the first three missions by purchasing an Omega Serum and completing "Ultimate Baby Yeti. "
Enjoy your Omega Dark Yeti!
Take a look at this handy visual guide form Charfade!
Now that Omega is live, what is left for EpicDuel? Besides bug fixes and balance polish, where can we go from here? The whole point of Omega was to extent the longevity and excitement of EpicDuel. We felt we were running into a rut by pushing the boundaries of power creep. Anything we released below level 35 was swiftly ignored by hardcore players, and items without "ideal" stat configuration were similarly neglected.
Omega will allow us to increase the depth of the battle engine through interesting choices rather than forcing players to adopt the "right" build with the "right" gear. As we add more cores, it will become increasingly harder for one build to rule them all. By creating ever-evolving battle dynamics, we believe EpicDuel can continue to grow in popularity and quality for years to come!
In the short term, after the dust has settled from the initial launch and balance is in a good place, we will being the Golden Yeti Tournament. We realize the structure is more of competition than a bracketed tournament, but we hope to evolve this concept into a fully-realized tournament feature.
After the Tournament, we will be concluding the Frysteland storyline, with an epic confrontation with Alydriah in her winter palace! Hang onto those Summoning Stones, because it will take a cosmic force of unimaginable power to unseat the tyrant from her icy throne!
Oh yeah, and there's actually a holiday coming up next week -- that means the return of a familiar angel of death! But what new abilities will these creations bring from the great beyond? Stay tuned to find out!
February 05, 2013
The day you've all been waiting for is finally here: Omega Day! Join us for the play-by-play. Also follow us on our Twitter accounts for the latest Omega updates. Once we begin the updating process, the game will likely be offline for up to 5 hours while we make drastic database changes and update millions of character records. However, we will still be posting here to give you the latest progress updates.
10:19 A.M. E.S.T.: First Omega update. Good job, Nightwraith. We're still waiting for Rabble and Charfade. Testing is mostly completed. All that remains is to review the updating procedures to make sure we don't turn everyone into a health pack accidentally.
10:24 A.M. E.S.T.: Rabble has arrived.
10:35 A.M. E.S.T.: Charfade has arrived.
10:54 A.M. E.S.T.: Morning Omega meeting in which we outlay the massive task ahead of us.
12:05 P.M. E.S.T.: Meeting still underway. Clarifying additional uncertainties about the release. There's very little margine for error here. I wish I understood more about code, but it all sounds very scary and complicated. I think Imma draw stuff and test map screens while they're at it.
1:00 P.M. E.S.T.: First 5-Hour Energy of the day. I'm surprised I made it this long. Resolving minor last minute bugs brought up by testers.
1:15 P.M. E.S.T.: I would like to take this opportunity to announce that we will be restocking the Limited Quantity Shops as soon as Omega goes live. Also, a TON of content is leaving when the update is complete. Haven't killed the Dragonoid Brain? Never defeated Chairman Platinum? Don't have the Slayer's Armor? Hop to it!
1:15 P.M. E.S.T.: The To Do Post-It wall is nearly bare...
...while the borders of Doneland runneth over.
*Doneland is nearly 3 layers deep.
2:52 P.M. E.S.T.: EpicDuel is shutting down to install Omega updates. Players are gathered by the dozens in Oz world 7 to bid Delta a final goodbye!
3:03 P.M. E.S.T.: Uploaded nearly 800 new or modified swfs. We haven't even touched the database yet. D:
3:05 P.M. E.S.T.: A group of yetis carried away the servers! Now, we'll have to venture on an epic journey to recover them! Hobbit-style!
3:06 P.M. E.S.T.: Bribed Yeti's with cheeseburgers. Not quite so epic.
3:30 P.M. E.S.T.: Attempting to clear the CDN cache so you can see all the new assets. "Purge All?" Seems legit. *Push*
3:46 P.M. E.S.T.: Testing new character creation. New armors -- online. New hairstyles -- online. Silly name --online.
3:54 P.M. E.S.T.: Awarding Varium, credits and achievements to enhancers.
4:14 P.M. E.S.T.: Running scripts to map all the items in game in every player's inventory to the new Omega system. Million of records being updated. Some serious math, yo!
5:00 P.M. E.S.T.: Sorting out some bugs with the update scripts. We're working as fast as we can, but we don't want to make any careless mistakes!
5:22 P.M. E.S.T.: Testing live character creation. Success!
6:12 P.M. E.S.T.: Bringing testers to Live server for final testing!
7:17 P.M. E.S.T.: Only minor issues so far! Easily fixed. For best results be sure to clear your cache before logging into Omega!
8:06 P.M. E.S.T.: Bugs are nearly smashed. Almost time to open the Omega floodgates!
8:41 P.M. E.S.T.: OMEGA IS LIVE epicduel.artix.com/play-now/
January 31, 2013
Omega Status Update
Well, it's the last day of January, and if you have been following out progress, you may have guessed already that Omega will not be launching today. However, I am happy to report that as of today we are FEATURE-LOCKED! This means that they features we wanted / needed for Omega are completed. As I said before, we wanted to be feature locked by last Sunday to release by this week, but that did not happen. Releasing this Friday or over the weekend may seem like an option but the release would not be adequately tested and there would be no support staff to help if issues arose. If we release early next week, with a fully-tested release, we can patch bugs and handle any other issues comfortably. Early next week seems like the best time to release given the current progress.
Some may be wondering: with 2 programmers and 2 artists and a team of testers -- how could a release be delayed so much? Development is always more work than you think it will be. Without Charfade and Rabblefroth, Omega would have been shot down immediately in the planning stages for being too complex. Omega is miles away more ambitious than any previous release -- even more than the initial launch with Artix in 2009. We want new development phases to shake things up. Omega is a 10.2 magnitude earthquake. It is practically a new game -- it certainly feels that way when we compare Omega to the current live version of the game.
I can tell you how hard we worked and how sorry we are, but none of that really matters. All that matters is the release. I will echo Titan when I say that we will release Omega when it's ready -- no sooner. If you try to pry open a chrysalis before the butterfly is ready, you won't find a sleeping butterfly -- you'll find a mangled organism, not ready for life. Was that a good analogy, Cindy?
That said, we understand your frustration and the fact that you've stuck with us this far demonstrates that you're as excited for Omega to go live as we are! Probably moreso at this point. All we ask is that you hang in there for just a bit longer! The end is in sight, and we're at full sprint, but we are also want to be careful not to stumble.
Also, I would like to add one final reminder that a metric ton of gear and missions are leaving the game (some permanently) when Omega goes live. For a complete list, check out this DN post from December!
One last, last thing -- here are some previews of new Core abilities from Dev: Meteor Shower and Energy Storm!
January 25, 2013
We made huge progress today on NPC AI. NPCs were completely rewritten for Omega and we were initially a bit concerned that they would need to be cut or severely limited for delaying Omega, but things just kind of came together -- as they sometimes do. Actually, they're even better than they were before since they can now use auxiliary weapons, like our friendly neighborhood Overlord Guard is using on me here:
With this major hurdle out of the way, this weekend should be smooth sailing. Well, smooth-ish. At this point, we're not taking anything for granted. The to-do now quite small, but we don't want to get overconfident. Another full weekend of working is ahead for us!
More Character Previews!
Check out these new screens form the Dev server showcasing the new character customizer with the new Bounty Hunter styles in-game! We're still working on color separations, so look for more previews on our Twitter feeds as the weekend rolls on!
Hopefully you'll enjoy these new armors as much as I enjoyed making them. EpicDuel has come a long way since it's creation and we are confident Omega will be the best phase yet!
Keep following our Twitters and DN posts for further updates! Here's hoping we'll be completely feature-locked by Sunday!
January 24, 2013
Now it can be told! We are pleased to announce the compensation for those who have purchased Enhancements in EpicDuel. If you didn't know already, Enhancements as you know them will be transitioning into the stat editing and Core systems when Omega releases.
The easiest part of the compensation to explain is the tiered Achievements:
Epic Enhancer: Any Varium or Credit Enhancements
Prestigious Enhancer: 50%
Illustrious Enhancer: 25%
Legendary Enhancer: 12.5%
Ultimate Enhancer: 1%
The percentages represent the various percentile ranks of Varium Enhancement expenditure. If you find the Prestigious Enhancer Achievement in your inventory, it means you were among the top 50% of Varium Enhancers.
If you have spent any amount of Varium on Enhancements or currently own an item with Credit Enhancements you will receive at minimum the Epic Enhancer Achievement. For players that upgraded with Varium, the more you've spent, the higher your Achievement tier. Only the top 1% of Varium Enhancers will receive the top tier Achievement! To be clear, you will only receive one of these five Achievements -- if you qualify for a higher tier achievement you will not also receive all the prior tiers. Also, Credit Enhancements will only qualify you for the first tier IF you still have the Enhanced item(s) in your inventory.
The second part of Enhancement compensation is a Varium / Credit refund for items currently in your inventory that have Enhancements on them. You will receive 30% of the initial purchase price of the Enhancements for Varium Enhancements and 10% of the price of Credit Enhancements. Credit refunds will be capped at 100k Credits. The refunded Credits and / or Varium will be awarded immediately after Omega goes Live.
Again, only Enhanced items currently in your inventory or equipped on your character are eligible for a refund. Unfortunately, we cannot refund Enhancements on items already sold. I advise you to hang onto all of your Enhanced items at least until we release Omega for maximum compensation.
It was very difficult to arrive at a solution that we felt was fair to those who supported this feature without gravely effecting the game's internal economy. We are confident the new open and flexible stat editing and Core systems will ultimately create a game that is more balanced, interesting and fun for paying and non-paying players, and we hope you join us in Omega to make it the best development phase yet!
*These values may be subject to change. We will alert you of any adjustments as soon as they occur.
January 24, 2013
A Classy Update
*Phew* I wanted to post an update yesterday, but I chose to power through and finish the new base class armors. Check them out!
In addition to these updated armors, I have also "remastered" about 100 hairstyles. I would like to go back and retouch the heads as well, but that may need to wait for another time.
Before I released the first shot of the new default armors, Titan predicted that players might favor the armors over many of the available purchasable armors. Of course, this is exactly the discussion that's taking place in the forums right now. We are investigating possible solutions to accommodate this desire. However, we don't want to feature creep too much for Omega, which brings me to my next point.
When Is Omega?
Excellent question! We would love, love, LOVE to answer you, but for obvious reasons we're extremely cautious about setting a hard deadline. It is imperative that we have several days of rigorous testing to release Omega as bug-free as possible so our current goal is to get Omega "feature-locked" by Sunday. What does this mean? It does not mean that we will release on Sunday or even Monday. It means that Omega's features will be completely finished and nothing more will be added aside from fixes and polish leading up to a formal release.
If we are feature-locked by Sunday -- you will know this because we will Tweet and/or release DNs about it -- a release by the end of January is extremely likely. If problems arise, we will keep you updated with progress reports leading up to the release. We will work as much as humanly possible to release in a relatively timely fashion.
When we do finally release, we plan on doing play-by-play Design Notes posts and Tweets to keep you informed. There may be several hours of downtime while we run scripts to update the Live database and migrate content and deal with any other issues so those posts will be your primary view of EpicDuel Omega's update status.
January 21, 2013
A Handy Guide
While were waiting on a formal video demonstrating the Stat Editing and Core features of Omega, I decided to put together a step-by-step guide to explain these exciting new systems. Keep in mind, these features are still being testing and balanced, so pricing and actual Core names may chance before the actual release.
First, select a weapon or armor from your inventory. If your level is greater than the level of your weapon, you can upgrade it to your current level. To start the process, click the yellow upgrade arrow in your inventory.
The Stat Editor will appear in your inventory and allow you to distribute the items stats. In this example, I am upgrading an armor. If it were a weapon, you would be able to distribute damage points instead of defense / resistance. You will not be able to change the damage type from physical to energy or energy to physical.
After you have distributed your stats, you can choose to finalize them for a Credit or Varium price. Prices vary based on how much you upgrade the item.
After you confirm the upgrade, your item will have the new stats.
Now that I've brought my old, dusty armor up to the level cap, I think I'll increase my odds in battle by installing a Core. Each item has a passive and active Core slot. Some promo items have locked Cores preinstalled. These Cores cannot be replaced at this time, but we may offer removal of these locked Core in the future. It's hard to say at this point.
Clicking an empty slot will open the "Core shop." Currently all of the Cores shown are available. Some extremely powerful cores may need to be unlocked before they can be used. You can install the Core by selecting an available Core from your Core inventory and choosing the Credit or Varium "Insert Core" option. Again, prices are subject to change and are for testing purposes.
After you have chosen your payment option, you will be asked to confirm your choice.
And just like that, the core is installed on my armor. I can also install an active Core by clicking the empty Core slot with a tiny skull. The inventory is different, but the process is the same. As the Core feature grows throughout Omega, battle tactics will change drastically with hundreds of possible Core combinations. The flexibility of this system will allow formerly obsolete gear to become battle-ready once again.
Stay tuned for further updates this week with a complete video demonstration from Practel!
January 17, 2013
Hey there, EpicDuelists, we're having another late night at the lab and I though I'd take a breather to share the progress of the character creator and new base class armors. I could drone on and on about the process, but I'll let the work speak for itself.
To answer a question about the new base armor designs -- these new designs will work like the current default armors in that they're not technically armors that you can equip / unequip. They will not be a mutating armor and it will not take up any space in your inventory. They can be hidden by equipping an actual armor.
January 11, 2013
The Battle Continues...
Nine hundred ninety nine...ONE THOUSAND!
That was quite a workout this week, but we've still got more sets until Omega is released!
Scores of Cores
Check out this giant pile of core designs Charfade whipped up this week!
Not all of these are cores that have been built, but they represent the limitless possibilities of the new skill core system! We've been getting tons of ideas from our testers and the EpicDuel forums, and we can't wait to launch and give everyone a chance to try this amazing new system!
More Cha-Cha Changes
Everyone is familiar with the default armors in EpicDuel. They're not even technically armors since you can't unequip them. Then you would be in your underwear! That would be silly and offer no protection at all from the harsh environments of Delta V. For Omega we decided to replace the default styles with something more representative of the EpicDuel's current graphical capabilities.
That's quite a change! I hope you will agree that it's for the better, but even if you still love the original version, you can keep it! The classic armors will become equippable armors and will be inserted into the inventories of all active players once Omega goes live. We haven't yet decided if players who join us after launch will have access to the classic armor, but we feel it might be best to retire this piece of EpicDuel's history permanently.
It will be tough, but I'll try to post weekend progress as well. I know Titan is going to be tap tap tapping away on his keyboard all weekend and I wouldn't want him to get lonely.
January 10, 2013
A Cut Above
As we've said before, one of our goals with Omega is to improve the early game experience. Part of this improvement involves taking a lot of the old artwork and bringing it up to the current standard. I've already mentioned that we'll be upgrading the starting armors, but we'll also be improving many of the old hairstyles.
This is a good point for artists -- you never want to stagnate. If your artwork from three or four years ago looks the same as it does today, you might be in trouble. Art is like exercise -- you won't have six-pack abs after three sit-ups, but after 100,000 it's much more likely (not in the same day, of course, unless you're Thyton).
Some of the infrequently used styles have been replaced entirely by these new styles by Disturbed! You'll see them available as soon as Omega goes live.
Join us tomorrow for a preview of the new starting armor styles!
January 09, 2013
Summoning The Endless
The Golden Yeti Tournament...More Deets
After further discussion and hearing even more feedback we have made a few decisions about the Golden Yeti Tournament.
The following is a story written by Cinderella to elaborate on the mysterious and powerful force known as "The Endless" that will play a crucial role in the Frysteland missions that will release with Omega.
January 08, 2013
Join us for yet another installment of the Omega Development Diaries! We made a lot of tasty progress today as Rabbleforth and Titan tackled the battle engine while Charfade and I took interface and armor design!
There Can Only Be One...
Hundred. One hundred winners in the Golden Yeti Tournament. You will be able to view your point total and the total off all the top 100 contestants from any one of these Tournament boards scattered across Delta V.
In addition to a Golden Yeti, the top 100 contestants -- those who racked up the most points through battle victories during the 2-week event -- will receive an achievement indicating their rank on the leaderboard: Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Platinum. There will only be ONE Platinum Yeti Achievement winner -- a champion for the ages!
With Omega, you will be able to equip skills directly to your weapons. Are working name for these skills is "skill cores." Charfade is hard a work designing interface icons for the piles and piles of cores we will release throughout Omega. We have a master list of core ideas spanning multiple pages and we are adding to it almost every day. We call it the Core Forge! We hope to release a number of basic cores at launch to get you used to the system, then add more over time as we build them. With the new battle engine, there will be almost no limit to what we can do!
Have your own idea for skill cores? Let us know in the EpicDuel forums!
Join us tomorrow as Cinderella explains the mysterious force known to the Krampus people as "The Endless!"