February 29, 2012
This post only exists every 4 years
Geez, don’t take me so literally. I don’t constantly put hidden meaning into every syllable I type.
Happy Leap Day, players! Happy Birthday to all of you whose calendar age is 1/4 their chronological age. We’ve got some awesome stuff in store for you this week, so let’s say we jump right on in! (har dee har har)
Please, don’t leave me...
The Heartbreaker saga has come to its, well, heartbreaking conclusion. Players should go to the Guard Outpost in Fortune City to see how your plans turned out. I don’t want to spoil it for you guys, so you’ll just have to report to the Outpost to watch the cutscene.
Since we’ve concluded the Heartbreaker Saga, these missions will be going rare, as well as the Frysteland Aftermath missions, so now is the time to get those in if you haven’t done so already.
New Promotional Pack!
By popular demand (yes, Facebook fans, I’ve seen your constant posts and tweets begging for a new promo pack and “WHEN NEW PROMO PACK? ANSWER NOW!”), the Heartbreaker/Azrael promotional pack, along with all the other Heartbreaker-themed weapons will be going out NEXT week, so players still have another week to purchase this amazing item package.
The Celtic Cleaver, with its "Lucky Strike" skill, and all the other Celtic items from last year are coming back next week as well. What luck!
If it ain’t broke...
Due to the overwhelming popularity of PvP drops, we’re planning to add 50 more broken items! These broken items can be fixed by Ulysses for a mere fraction of the original varium cost, and these new weapons go all the way up to level 33! By Grabthar’s hammer, what a savings!
A wild Tech Mage appears! Rabblefroth uses Balance Changes. It’s Super Effective!
The balance changes for low-level Tech Mages seemed to work really well, so this week we’re focusing on addressing balance at higher levels. Go Rabblefroth! :D
There goes the neighborhood...
If you follow me (@Cinderella_ED) or Nightwraith (@Nightwraith_ED) on Twitter, you may have seen us conversing with two of the NPCs, specifically Lysander Cox/the NegaWraith (@Negawraith_ED) and Alydriah Descarl (@AllWillObey). If you tweet, feel free to follow all of us on Twitter! In addition, if you haven’t already, “like” us on Facebook at facebook.com/EpicDuelOfficial
This week’s Insect Fact is based on a brand spanking new paper (seriously, it was just published 10 days ago), so I’m super-excited about this. Endoparasitism by parasitoid wasps is a huge mortality factor for insect larvae across taxa, and insect species have various ways to combat parasitoid infection. One hypothesis for how insects combat parasitoids is the “nasty host hypothesis”, wherein in addition to normal immune response (insects do not have adaptive immune responses like we do, but they do have an immune system that allows them to fend off infection and encapsulate parasites) insects larvae are able to sequester allelochemicals from their host plants and sequester them in their hemolymph and body fat, which poisons the parasites. In the case of the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster, fly larvae that are exposed to ethanol are not parasitized as often by wasps, and when larvae are infected, consumption of ethanol causes increased death of the wasp larvae. Also, after infection, the fly larvae will search for sources of ethanol to consume. Infected fly larvae are twice as likely to survive parasitism by a generalist parasitoid after consuming ethanol than those that did not, indicating that the fly is self-medicating with ethanol. This is not the first time that this has been observed- flies infected with bacteria will give themselves fevers by seeking out heat sources to kill the bacterial infection.