November 07, 2014
Birthday Bio War Rumble
The time has come...FOR WAR...and cake. Cake? That's right. Today, we're excited to launch a new war region, the Biological Preserve, in addition to Nightwraith's birthday stash of rare loot.
The Biological Preserve is the last bastion for all that is green and growing on Delta V, and it is being used as a weapon by those occupying the region. By using Davarril's research on mind-controlling Spores, Exiles have engineered a massive tree to become a spore-launching factory, spreading spores throughout the region.
The Legion, under the watch of Cinderella, are attempting to stop this threat with Purifiers. These devices launch spores to counteract the Corruption Spores launched by the Corrupted Tree.
Exiles will attempt to use this to their advantage by planting Corruption Spore on the Purifiers, infesting them and turning them into Corruption Spore factories.
The only way to stop the spread of the spores is to cleanse the Corrupted Tree. When it is fully cleansed, the Legion will take control of the Biological Preserve. If the Exiles prevail and infest the Purifiers, the region will fall fully under Exile control.
Davarril has been moved one screen to the left of the Corrupted Tree. You'll find him next to the Ammunition Depot stocked with war drops. Davarril's mind still isn't right from the Arborgeddon event so he won't be much help to you.
This war's prize is a mighty one indeed! Claws and teeth and hardened-bone armor await the conquerers of the Biological Preserve!
We've also added some small changes to the War balancing mechanics, specifically to prevent War Rallies from occuring when both alignments are within 1% of each other. Also, rallies will not happen when the war is nearly over. This should provide clarity to those confused by the outcome of the last war.
Now, go forth my Legion and Exile warriors! Claim the Biological Preserve for glory! But first...
Nightwraith's Birthday Bash
Happy Birthday to me! Well, it's still a bit early, but why not? Everyone loves cake!
Also, everyone loves new stuff! Remember, you'll need the OneX6 Key to access my stash in the ArmoryBot. You can either claim it from me by completing the OneX6 4 mission or just buy it from me if you're the impatient type. This year, I've stolen NegaWraith's (that IMPOSTER) armor to sell at my own shop. Haha! I can't wait to see the look on his face when he sees my minions clad in his precious power armor!
Be sure to kick him in the shin if you find him in Fortune City skulking around the Battle Arena.
Also, there are new and returning missions ready to play! The Party Business mission chain has returned with a new mission, and Titan has a new chain Caffeine Crash to complement the Coffee Crusader chain. This chain will allow you to redeem Titan's Mug for a rare Achievement!
Some have been asking about the Titan's Mug item from the Artix Entertainment 12th anniversary event. Here's what will happen:
Got it? You've got until the end of November to complete these missions and claim your prize!
Have a safe and happy weekend everyone! Duel On!
March 07, 2014
Onward to War
War is approaching. A better war. A faster war. A war that more fully captures to epic clash of Legion and Exile forces. Though this new war was not quite ready to be unveiled today, we're still hard at work and hope to have a finished feature ready to go early next week. This Design Note post will reveal some new and exciting elements from the new war system.
Before we get into the meat of the post, I'll briefly mention the absense of Legion and Doom from the server select. Today we did a small update to patch some exploits and improve server security. Due to recent erratic behavior, Legion and Doom were taken offline. We do not yet know if we will bring them back, but we do know that those servers were old and underperforming. Epic and Exile (we should probably change their names now, huh?) will soon be upgraded to faster, more modern servers to improve performance, making additional servers unnecessary for the time being.
Onward to WAR!
With the new war system, we wanted to emphasize accessibility. The current war has a lot of moving parts and can be quite difficult to grasp for a novice just learning the basics of dueling. Under the new system, the active war will be represented by a global war bar. This war bar provides general information about the conflict and quick-jump buttons to the main objectives.
When the war is over, the prize button will become active for the winning alignment! We'll get to that a bit later...
Some war objectives may be familiar with a few key changes -- you'll notice the Control Array now has a shield over it. It's up to the alignment on offense to bring down the shield and capture the Array, while the defenders must stop the aggressors at all costs!
To defend or attack, Legion and Exile warriors will receive PvP war drops. Defenders will receive Dread Bombs while the attackers will receive Dread Shells. These drops can be used at objectives to gain influence for yourself, your Faction, and your alignment. This is also the primary mechanism for driving the war. To discourage hoarding, you will only be able to hold a maximum of 10 of each type of war drop in your inventory. If you choose not to participate in the war, you will be able to sell the drops with no sellback.
War drops can be used at war objectives, which will be scattered throughout the active region.
Clicking a war objective brings up a menu to use your war drops. You can use your drops for free, or upgrade them to a more powerful form for Varium. The more powerful drops can also drop from PvP battles, but at a much lower rate.
The objectives will show realtime destruction as they are used and abused by warring alignments. Small notifications will appear to broadcast your feats of valor for all to see!
Each objective has a different attribute -- providing interesting tactical decisions for either side of the conflict.
Defend your objectives or see them burnt to the ground! When the war ends, the winning alignment, along with the most victorious player and Faction will be displayed prominently throughout the region!
With the changes to the war system, we'll be consolidating the existing regional influence-buffing cores into a sole War Commander core. This new limited-charge core will give 10 guaranteed war drops for battle victories.
This core will be available from prominent Legion and Exile NPCs in active war regions.
Since some are already very close to attaining the 10th tier of certain regional war achievements, we've decided to bump up the difficulty with 2 more tiers for each region. We're even planning a super-special acheivement for reaching tier 12 on ALL regions, including Frysteland and the Infernal Mines (coming soon)!
During the war, you'll also have a change to earn the prestigious War Hero achievement by earning the most influence in a single day!
Winng a war is an incredible task, so the victors should receive equally incredible rewards! Never-before-seen weapons, armors, vehicles and amazing currency bonuses await those who triumph!
If you're the picky type, you'll have a list of 6 items to choose from when claiming your reward. The prizes will rotate between war events so the list will be ever-changing and always interesting!
Expect an early release next week while we iron out the last of the bugs and polish the remaining features of our new war system! Thank you for your patience! We're confident the feature will be worth the wait!
Last but not least, remember to check out the seasonal rare Springtime gear, available at Naomi and Xraal!
Grab this awesome gear before it disappears back into the database aether for another year!
February 21, 2014
War Two Point Oh
When will the Dread War End?
We've heard your feedback about the Dread War and many players have made it clear they're ready for it to end. Well good news! We’ve been working hard planning exciting improvements to the current system. When we first conceived the Dread War, our goal was to implement an event that could provide perpetual engagement, but over time, a few weaknesses in the system’s design have become apparent and the war has become a bit stale. The current war is complicated, it never ends, it doesn't offer enough rewards, and there is no focal point. This post will explain how we intend to overhaul the current system, and offer up the key points of the proposed new war system. The details are subject to change so please give us your feedback so we can build the best system possible. We believe by borrowing the best ideas from previous phases and prior wars, we can craft a system that is simple to understand, extremely engaging, perpetually rewarding and really, really fun!
As you can see, our dry-erase board breeding program is progressing nicely.
A Sense of Urgency
Currently, The Dread War is a global conflict without end. The lack of focus and lack of duration means there’s never any urgency. In past events like The Frysteland War and The Infernal War, there was a clear set of victory conditions. With War 2.0, we hope to recreate this sense of urgency by limiting the scope of the War to one region at a time and structuring it as a race. The War will last until a specific set of conditions are met by either alignments’ forces (we expect these regional conflicts to last roughly 1-3 weeks).
When the War in a particular region ends, the environment will visually reflect the winners, and the region will remain in control of the winning alignment until it comes up for contention again in the future. Prizes will unlock for the winners, and the top participating players and factions will be made famous (in a similar fashion to the Infernal War). After a small cooldown period, the next region will activate and the war will continue. The victory conditions in each region will vary to keep the conflicts interesting.
To a new player, the current War system is baffling. Control points, cooldowns, and other obscure systems are extremely challenging to convey at a glance. As we develop War 2.0, we’ll be streamlining many of the old systems. Mechanics like Influence, Flag Captures and World Dominations will remain, but behave differently from the current system.
The gameplay mechanic will evolve from a constant grind for control, to a more focused system where both alignments are racing toward very specific goals. Each regional War will be a race to complete the given objective and whichever alignment fills their global war bar first will win the battle and take control of the region!
PvP battles will remain the main driver of conflict, however, Influence will no longer be earned at the end of battle. Instead players will earn Influence by depositing new "War Drops" on War Objectives within the region. These drops will be similar to the grenades in the Infernal War in that they will drop after winning a PvP battle. War Drops will be thematically tied to the currently contented region and can be anything from missiles to computer chips, ammo crates, bricks, cakes, plants, metal, bullets, etc. Players of all levels can obtain and use these items, maintaining a very low barrier of entry for War participation.
If you fight hard to be the greatest champion EpicDuel has ever know, you deserve a place of honor. With War 2.0 we hope to give greater exposure to exceptional players who make the greatest contribution to the war effort. Interactive leaderboards will display the leading players and Factions for each alignment. At the end of each regional War, the bravest, most dedicated soldier will be displayed prominently until the region is contested once again.
By defining a clear beginning and end for each regional War, we can offer real rewards for the victor. At the end of each War, players on the winning alignment will gain access to exclusive prizes. To add variety to this experience, players can select a prize from a list. These prizes could be never-before-seen weapons or currency prizes like Credits and Arcade Tokens. Each region will draw a new set of prizes to choose from, and the prize pool will continue to expand as the regional wars progress.
These rewards will only be available to those who participate on the winning alignment, and they will only be available until the next regional War begins. We will also be adding additional levels to each regional War achievements. If you’re at level 10 or close in any of the regions, you’ll be able to battle your way to an even higher Rating Point score!
Also, the highest scoring player at the end of each day will receive a War Hero achievement. This achievement will have a tracker to record each time you qualify for this prestigious distinction.
War 2.0 will herald a new phase of EpicDuel development: EpicDuel Evolution. This new phase will be unlike any before it – over the last few months we have been gradually building tools and tutorials to allow EpicDuel’s future to be directed by a force more powerful that the mighty Titan himself: our Community.
Over the years we’ve attracted some amazingly talented and ambitious players. Our player base may be much smaller than AdventureQuest Worlds, but the level of talent is no less. Our intention for EpicDuel Evolution is to allow more input and direct involvement from our players to influence things like content creation and balance. If you were shy about contributing content or ideas to EpicDuel, now is a better time than ever to express because soon we’ll be offering the resources to make them a reality!
We're aiming to activate the first region on Friday, March 7, but as usual this is just an estimate and could be delayed if development demands it. Stay tuned for more details as this exciting new feature evolves!
October 11, 2013
*There will be no release today as we prepare for a MEGA RELEASE next week. Thank you for your patience!
It's been nearly a year since Chairman Platinum last showed his face on Delta V -- the populace quickly gave him a proper EpicDuel beat-down and put an end to his plans for a hostile takeover. If there's one thing the Chairman is good at (aside from robbing grannies and punting kittens) it's holding a grudge. After a year of planning and healing, he's ready to end the fued -- along with all the inhabitants of Delta V.
Rather than bringing an army, the Chairman is taking a more subtle approach -- forcibly extracting all the Varium from Delta V to cause the entire planet to collapse! The Ebilcorp extraction device is protected by a nearly impervious shield and in order to breach it, you'll need to face the Chairman himself!
This time, there will be no deals, no negotiations. The Chairman wants to annihilate those who wronged him and make a tidy profit while doing it. If only there were someone who could help us stop him!
To defeat this otherworldy threat, Delta V will need an otherworldy benefactor in the form of Elon Musk, engineering mastermind and visionary businessman (basically the closest the real-world has to Tony Stark). While testing his new Ultraloop interstellar transportation device on a routine visit to a Martian colony, Musk overshot his target and landed on Delta V.
Although his ship was not damaged, he'll need some time to adjust his calculations. Since he's always up for a challenge calling for ingenuity, he's prepared to offer the citizens of Delta V his expertise in expelling the Ebilcorp threat and reversing Platinum's damage, offering Delta V a means of generating efficient renewable energy in the process!
This task will not be easy, however, as Musk is lightyears away from his fabrication workshop. You'll need to scour Delta V to find the parts necessary to allow this benevolent genius to invent a permanent solution to your Platinum problem.
As stated above, Musk will need your help securing various items from across Delta V to devise a means for you to defeat Platinum. Also, he's not letting you go it alone -- complete his mission chain and he'll join you in a battle of the business titans as you take on Platinum in an epic 2v1 duel!
Complete the mission chain by defeating Chairman Platinum and you'll receive a new achievement!
Chairman's Ebilcorp extractor is bad news, but Musk has plans to reengineer it to be a source of limitless energy! As an added bonus, the power plant will be able to produce advanced cores capable to augmenting basic stats!
Musk sees you admiring his armor -- don't worry, he brought extras! Power up with the Musk Husk and send Chairman Platinum packing!
Since next week will be a MEGA release, there are bound to be aspects that we forget to mention here. Stay tuned on Twitter and the Design Notes for the latest and greatest updates!
September 12, 2013
Are You Ready for a Challenge?
After weeks of controlling events from behind the scenes, Administrator 10 and the mysterious Exile Leader are ready to step into the spotlight, and they’re taking matters into their own hands! Team up with a friend to challenge these foes and claim their achievements for your own! These bosses will be some of the most challenging in game, but we’re not without mercy. To make it easier to triumph over these foes, we’re raising the level cap!
At long last, we have increased the level cap to 36. It won’t be quick or easy to reach so we’re sure there will be a mad dueling dash to be the first to reach it. The first players to reach this goal will be able to upgrade their gear and skills to become the most powerful duelists on Delta V! Will you be strong enough to defeat Administrator 10 and the Exile Leader?
In between duels, Administrator 10 and the Exile Leader will have some new tasks for you. Check back with them daily for missions and rewards. The missions will be part of a chain so players will need to complete all of them in order to receive the best reward! To keep missions from becoming monotonous, we’ll be cycling in new chains each day to guarantee that there’s always something exciting to do on Delta V!
Remember the Arcade? We haven’t forgotten, and we’re working on implementing a new and improved version next week. Under the new system players will be able to deposit Arcade Tokens for a chance to win anything from a pile of credits, to never-before-seen weapons, to previously retired rares (gasp)!
August 16, 2013
Defend your hard-fought War Objectives with Shield Generators! These critical structures allow you to reinforce the influence of other structures you own in a certain region. Like Turrets, Shield Generators can only be used on another structure within the same region.
Like Turrets, Shield Generators have 3 levels of improvement depending on the amount of your Alignment's Influence.
New War Objectives!
Building upon the Turret release last week, we have added Turrets and Shield Generators to all contested regions. Here's a quick look at the new Objectives and their locations. Better hurry if you want a foothold in a heavily disputed region!
Wasteland Missile Turret
Barrens Shield Generator
Central Station Cannon
Central Station Shield Generator
Overlord Shield Generator
Naval Yard Shield Generator (formerly Propaganda Tower)
New Titan Cores!
Titan's birthday may be over, but he's not done giving just yet. Visit him in his frosty Frysteland lair to try three new Charge Cores!
Unleashes the powerful scent of bacon on your target, dealing 114% weapon damage.
Summon Titan to chomp your target for 114% weapon damage.
Rains down delicious bacon, dealing 114% weapon damage to the target.
Rabblefroth is also making some fine adjustments to the Alignment matching. It should allow for better quality matches, especially in 2v2.
August 08, 2013
Fire Ze Missiles!
EpicDuel is finally rolling out the heavy artillery for the Dread War. Capture and upgrade turrets to fire upon opposition War Objectives within the various regions of Delta V. Turrets can be upgraded by filling the control bar. The more heavily an alignment dominates a turret, the further it will upgrade.
To fire a turret, simply click on it as you would an NPC. You can then select an option to fire the turret, select your target, then fire. The turret will fire in real time and those on the target screen will see the impact! Remember, you can only fire turrets that your alignment controls so it is imperative to capture and hold turrets to maintain a tactical advantage in any region in which they are present.
Soon we will be celebrating the birthday of everyone's favorite Delta V demi-god: Titan. This mighty being uses technology so advanced, it is indistinguishable from magic. Some believe he created Delta V through sheer force of will. These people are quickly dismissed as fanatics, but there is no denying his awesome power.
Visit Titan in his Frysteland lair to collect new mutating weapons and a mighty new sword: Titan's Triumph. These will be limited in quantity so you had better be quick!
Hmmmm...seems a bit sketchy.
Also returning will be Titan's Burger Bike!
The image speaks for itself.
We are adding additional Active Cores to the roster of Charge Cores. Each use in battle will deplete a Core charge. We're hoping to have enough time to implement some completely new Charge Cores for your battling enjoyment. Could they be Titan-themed? Perhaps...
One of the oldest and most prolific NPCs in EpicDuel is the humble VendBot. These little guys have seen the evolution of EpicDuel from the earliest Alpha days to the modern Omega phase. In that time, they've traded their inventories of obsolete boosters to Cores. Their old technology can barely contain the demand so they've been refitted for extra capacity to provide you with the latest and greatest hardware upgrades, serving as a one-stop core shop.
Someone's been working out!
Miss the old design? Don't worry, the original will still be around in a few remote places of Delta V.
July 25, 2013
Here Come the Juggernauts
Sorry for the wait, but starting tomorrow, Juggernauts will be able to participate in Dread War and earn influence. This is not because we hate Juggernauts -- if anything, they represent the hardest of the hardcore EpicDuelists, able to take down two foes singlehandedly! No, this was because of a boring technical reason. Since Juggernauts could only start battle from the Slayer and Influence is only earned by fighting on a War Objective screen, Juggernauts were locked by location on a non-Objective screen. We plan to remedy this by adding a Juggernaut button to the main interface, right next to 1v1 and 2v2. This should also give the feature some much-needed exposure. I'm sure many new duelists don't even know it exists!
Starting tomorrow, instead of battling from Slayer, Juggernauts (anyone owning Slayer's Silver or Gold Skull Cards) will be able to engage a Juggernaut battle from any screen! Sound good to you? I thought so!
Are you ready for Juggernauts?
Rabblefroth is hard at work refining the Legion vs. Exile matchmaking system to heavily prioritize alignment when choosing opponents and allies for Duels. We understand that many are concerned that this change could make matches painfully slow to find and we are aware of this. Hopefully, with enough variables at our disposal we can easily fine-tune the system if matches are too slow or imbalanced.
As I'm writing this, Rabblefroth is still building and testing this feature. It is of the utmost importance that it be tested thoroughly so I'm not sure yet if it will go live tomorrow. Be sure to follow our Twitter feeds for the latest updates!
More Dynamic Objective Screens
To make the war feel more tactile, we've updated over 60 screens (including battle backgrounds) to show Legion or Exile content depending on the alignment controlling the War Objective. This gives us a tremendous amount of control for each screen -- we can even change the active content such as NPCs!
Administrator 11 just got busted!
I've seen a lot of questions on Twitter and in the forums about the specific numbers for each achievement level for the regional war achievements. Your questions can now be answered in our handy new influence tracker, accessible from the Delta V world map.
Just click this button!
From this new interface you will be able to see your current level of regional achievement as well as how many more points you need to achieve the next level!
I've got a long way to go!
We like this new system so much, that we are making it the start of a long-awaited revamp to the Achievement system.
Capture the Spirit!
In addition to the regional war achievements, we are introducing another evolving achievement: the War Objective Capture achievement! This achievement is awarded to players who participate in the capture of a War Objective up to an hour before the Objective is officially captured. Do you have enough conquering spirit to reach the highest level?
Claim the world!
Meet the AE Team this weekend
Direct from Artix's Design Note post!
I hope to see you there!
July 11, 2013
A New Level of Warfare
Another week has passed in the Dread War as both alignments continually clash across Delta V. Every day, War Objectives change hands and entire regions fall as the war rages on. This week, we are expanding upon the existing War features while introducing some new ones.
Collect them all!
New Regional Weapons
This week, we will be introducing 6 new regional weapons. You can find them at the Dread Plains Control Array, Fortune City Battle Arena, and the Archive AI in the Biodome.
Dread Destroyers - Control Array
Fortune City Slayers - Battle Arena
Bio Busters - Archives AI
Some may be confused about how to acquire these devastating new weapons. Allow me to clarify: in order to unlock these regional weapons, your alignment must control a key War Objective in a region. For example, to unlock the Barrens Busters, your alignment must control the Bazaar in the Barrens Outpost region. This unlocks a supply of 5 of each weapon, BUT they will restock periodically. Holding the key War Objectives longer allows as many of your fellow soldiers to have a chance at the weapons as possible.
Barrens Busters - Bazaar Command Hub
Trainyard Terrors - Train Command Hub
Overlord Overkills - Overlord AI
Wasteland Wardens - Minetower Suite Door
Nautical Nightmares - Naval Yard Shack
Last week we introduced limited-time influence buffs. By equipping these cores onto a weapon, the owner would be granted an influence buff for a certain number of victories. Currently, if a limited-charge core is exchanged/removed, it is destroyed, even if it has a remaining balance of charges left. In the future, we would like Cores to behave more like regular items that can be equipped and unequipped to items. However, this requires a greater discussion of intense interface and programming changes so it will need to wait for a later update.
Last week, we finally "opened" the War Chests to all those who already owned them to reveal 8 regional influence buffs. Unfortunately, those who purchased War Chests after the release found their locks still intact. This week we will be fixing that by unlocking all the remaining War Chests. However, the War Chests will no longer be available with the Legion or Exile promotional packages once we go live. All of the marketing materials will be updated to reflect this change.
Last Chance for War Chests!
Have you collected all the regional War achievements yet? Really? Impressive. Now, can you level each achievement all the way to the max? It won't be easy, but each level earned represents a new tier of mastery and truly epic bragging rights.
Since we're adding so many new achievements, we thought it would be helpful to give you a way to easily track your progress through the war. Through the map screen, you will be able to easily see your battle contributions for each region and how close you are to reaching the next tier! (Sorry, but we had to cut this feature due to time. It will be coming next week though!)
Additionally, you can now determine at a glance which War Objectives are on the verge of switching alignments and need your immediate attention for defense or offense. Also, each War Objective will now show your personal Influence contribution! Can you dominate them all?
Claim the Battlefield
With the update on Friday, the controlling alignment will be able to alter the appearance of many of the War Objective screens. Drape war banners over the Battle Arena, flood the Minetower with Legion guards, or move your troops to secure the Control Array. Now, when you capture a region, everyone will know it!
Under new Management.
These changes will persist in the battle backgrounds, allowing you to duel while your Faction's banner flies high in the background!
Wow! That's quite a few additions for a regularly scheduled release. Stay tuned for more updates!
July 03, 2013
Those of you who played over the weekend may have noticed some wonkiness on the Control bars for each War Objective. This bug tipped the balance overwhelmingly in favor of the Legion. Obviously, this was not intentional and Titan spent all day Sunday repairing this bug. Unfortunately, since the scores for irreparably skewed, they all had to be reset. We apologize for any inconvenience this caused.
Independence Day Rares Return
This Friday, you can celebrate freedom with the returning Independence Day rares. You can find them equipped to Naomi in Central Station. Also, the Independence Day achievement will also be available at all the VendBot Achievement shops throughout Delta V.
Thanks to some help from Trizzzcentrino, we've managed 2 new seasonal rare bikes (to be found on Naomi)! Flavoured in Legion or Exile designs, you can show alignment pride while tearing up the battlefield. These are also the first bikes to attempt a new chrome color that's not color custom (the shiny, silvery bits on the bikes). I think it creates a neat effect that's lost on most color custom parts, but we'll see how you like it.
New War Objectives
To flesh out some of the less populous regions of Delta V, we have added 7 new War Objectives! You can find the in the West Naval Yard, the Barrens Outpost, and Central Station. Can you help capture them all and dominate Delta V?
Regional War Shops
By controlling key points in each region (i.e. the Battle Arena in Fortune City, the Overlord AI in the Overlord Facility, etc...), Alignments can unlock War Shops. Since supplies are scarce during wartime, these shops only supply limited quantities of items. To allow as many players to collect these items as possible, alignments are encouraged to hold regions for as long as possible since the War Shops will restock automatically over time. These War Shops will offer distinct advantages to those who control them in the form of War Cores. These Cores come either attached to a weapon or separately.
With this release, we will be introducing new core technology: consumable cores! By equipping them to a primary weapon, these cores will confer a regional Influence bonus that will last a certain amount of battles. After the core expires, a new one will need to be purchased. We have coded them to only count victories as a “use”.
War Chests Revealed
Now it can be revealed! Each Legion and Exile War chest contains regional War Cores! That means eight free cores (one for each active region)! Players with War Chests will start out with an automatic advantage in the War with the flexibility to gain a bonus in whichever region they choose. Since this bonus is alignment neutral, players who purchased the Legion pack, but decided to fight for the Exiles (and vice versa) will not be penalized.
For those who have been following EpicDuel since before Omega, you are probably aware that Consumables like Health Packs and Boosters no longer serve a purpose in battle. Rather than try to wedge consumables back into the game, we have decided to move toward consumable cores and, as of this release, we will be removing all consumables from the game. All players with consumables in their inventories will receive the appropriate amount of resale currency for the items removed.
Going forward, it will be possible for us to recreate Boosters, Grenades and Bombs as cores, which ultimately has more flexibility and does require the database to store excessive items entries for each player. Initially, we thought we could simply recode all the consumables back into the game, but the game has changed dramatically both code-wise and balance-wise since Omega launched so we determined that this would be the best decision for the overall health of the game.
June 25, 2013
How Do I War?
Step 0: Register an Account
This should be obvious, but you cannot participate in this war if you do not have an EpicDuel character!
Step 1: Choose an Alignment
If you are not already in a Faction, then you will be prompted to select an alignment. Choose carefully, because although alignment change will be offered later, it will come at a price.
Step 2: Open the World Map
Once you are in Delta V, war is all around you, and getting to the conflict zones has never been easier. Use the interface button on the lower part of your screen to open the redesigned World Map.
This map shows the various regions of Delta V (i.e. Fortune City, Barrens Outpost, Biodome, etc...) and the Alignment in control of each region. Click a region to zoom in and see the individual War Objectives.
Most regions feature War Objectives that can be captured by your alignment. A rollover shows the War Point value of each War Objective. If your alignment captures enough War Objectives to have the Point majority in a region, your alignment will control that region. It is not necessary to control all the War Objectives in a region to get War Points. Even if you only control one War Objective, you will still earn Points toward the daily War Point total. Different War Objectives can be worth different amounts of Points.
If you zoom out, you can see the daily War Score. Each War Objective earns the controlling alignment War Point every 15 minutes. The score resets at the end of the day.
Step 2: How to War
Once you have determined where you want to fight, controlling a War Objective is fairly simple. While zoomed into a region, you can click on any War Objective to jump directly to it.
While you're on the screen with the War Objective, you will notice a bar at the top of the screen with a banner displaying the controlling alignment and leading Faction.
You can see that on this screen the Legion controls this War Objective. A Legion player can fight to defend this Objective and reinforce the position while an Exile player can fight from this screen attempt to take it for his or her alignment. Let's try to take it for the Exiles.
Automatch 1v1 or 2v2 victories earn Influence which allows you to control or reinforce a War Objective. Support for Juggernaut battles is coming soon. Challenge matches do not earn Influence. You can only earn Influence if you battle from a screen that contains a War Objective.
At the end of battle screen you will see how much Influence you earned. 1v1 battles earn 5 Influence while 2v2 battles earn 15. Influence is a versatile number that goes into a number of different places.
Your personal Influence, viewable from your Character Stats page, is earned through victories on War Objectives. It is not capped or taxed.
Faction Influence is earned through battles by all of a Faction's members. It is not capped or taxed.
If you belong to a Faction, your Influence accumulates on a War Objective. The Faction with the most Influence accumulated on a War Objective will have its banner displayed over it. All Influence on a War Objective is taxed so inactive Factions can be passed by more active Factions. Banner Influence is not capped.
Control is a number that is driven by Influence earned in victories for a War Objective. This number is capped to prevent one Alignment from building an insurmountable lead. Once an Alignment has earned a certain amount of Influence on an Objective, it is considered to be captured and goes into cooldown.
During cooldown, no Alignment can earn Influence while battling for this War Objective. Once the cooldown period is over, the controlling Alignment can reinforce its position and the attacking Alignment can battle to seize control, putting the Objective into cooldown again. This is to encourage players to move to different regions and keep the war from bogging down in one region.
Step 3: Victory
As we have seen in the past, the Alignments truly succeed in Wars through active recruitment and organization. Although it's not necessary to join a Faction to participate, Factions have the tools and organization to rally forces to take down heavily fortified War Objectives.
We are currently adding more clarification and balance elements streamline the War and minimize ambiguity. Stay tuned for another DN post with more update details!
June 21, 2013
Legion and Exile forces, the time has come to man your battle stations! The Dread War officially begins today, June 21! Choose your alignment carefully, as you will not only be supporting that alignment for the Dread War, but the remainder of your time on Delta V.* This is a time of conflict- there can be no room for neutral parties.
*You will be able to change alignment later, but at a steep cost with time-based limitations.
You are somewhere...around here.
I also want to mention that the war system coming todayis a major change to the overall gameplay experience of EpicDuel, not just a temporary event for the next month or so. We will change the dynamics periodically and add features to keep the war fresh, but the system itself is going to be part of the core gameplay. We don't want to keep ANYONE from the clash!
Use the regional map to jump to contested Objectives!
With this release, we will be introducing 21 War Objectives to claim. Do you have what it takes to claim them all and shape the future of Delta V?
As previously announced, Flags will be converted to War Objectives, which will require more active control over an area rather than simply dumping in tokens, which will be removed next week. Since I didn't have specifics last week about credit/token conversion, here is RabbleFroth's word on the subject:
1) Credits per battle will be increased. The base amount for 1v1 was 32 per win, it will increase to 37 per win, and about 2 more credits for a 1v1 loss. This bonus is appropriately increased for 2v2 and Juggernaut.
The current flags will be converted to War Objectives with this release, with more areas under dispute released in the future! Next week we hope to upgrade Objectives to impart buffs to the controlling alignment in the area, and actually make it possible for the Objectives to upgrade and evolve with effort.
A new War Objective outside of Ulysses' workshop.
This is going to be a gigantic update with a major change to EpicDuel's primary gameplay, but we are far from done. Other features which should (hopefully) be implemented next week include:
With so many features coming tomorrow, and even more on the horizon, this is going to be a Summer to remember for EpicDuel!
June 13, 2013
Daring Design Notes
The Dread War is coming! Tensions between Legion and Forces are at an all-time high, and Delta V is poised to explode into all-out war June 21st. Will you fight for Freedom with the Exiles or battle in the name of Order alongside the Legion? This Friday, we will be launching the complete Dread Plains area, along with a new map / navigation system. Travelling the entirety of Delta V has never been quicker or easier!
Choose Your Destiny!
Starting this Friday, all EpicDuelists will be called upon to select an alignment to participate in the upcoming war. For those of you just joining us, this means you must choose to fight for the Exiles or Legion. I have taken the liberty of describing the corresponding alignments thusly:
Choosing an alignment is not as simple as “good” and “evil” – both alignments have similar goals, but drastically different means of achieving them. Choose carefully – you will be able to change alignment later, however, to encourage loyalty, the price will be steep!
Bye-Bye Battle Tokens*
After much deliberation, as of next week’s update (June 21) Battle Tokens are being discontinued. Initially, Battle Tokens were intended as a currency based entirely on a player’s effort alone, since they could not be purchased with Varium packages and could only be earned through battle victories. However, since we no longer offer credits with packages, making credits an effort currency, it no longer makes sense to keep Tokens. They will be replaced by credits at a fixed rate, so you'll see a nice little windfall based on how many tokens you currently have. Token Boost will also be removed, and achievements will cost credits rather than Tokens. Missions awarding battle tokens will be altered to award credits rather than tokens at a fixed rate.
As we phase out Battle Tokens, War Flags will be transitioned into War Objectives, which will be captured and controlled by Faction and alignment battles, not donations. For the time being, however, the top contributor of each War Flag will own the War Objective for that Faction's alignment. So, if the Legion Faction “The Sparkling Vampires” holds the War Flag in “The Land of Terrible Fiction,” then they would be the first to claim the War Objective for the Legion in that area. But we are making these Objectives more challenging than simply dumping Battle Tokens into a flag. Also, there will be a control cap on each Objective, meaning that an alignment cannot build and insurmountable lead on an Objective.
These new War Objectives will come in the form of radar stations, turrets, shield generators, propaganda towers, and many other tactically valuable assets. Many regions of Delta V will have one or more of these Objectives ripe for the capturing. Some Objectives will even grant you bonuses toward defending or attacking other objectives, creating an interesting hierarchy of Objectives and adding new strategies to the global war.
*These features are still in development and the details may change by June 21st. We will keep you informed of any changes.
Delta V World Tour 2013
Travelling has never been easier. In order to allow players to jump quickly to each War Objective, we added multiple jump points on each region. You will be able to see at a glance which areas are contested, and which are firmly under Legion or Exile control.
Our special guest artist, the great Nulgath, has been gracious enough to lend his skills to EpicDuel for the construction of an epic new bike! Strike fear in the hearts of your enemies as you tear across the battlefields in this demonic creation!
Insect Facts Yay!
Most people while visiting the plant store would be outraged to find a late-instar caterpillar on one of the store's plants for sale. Most people however, are not me. Papilo polyxenes or the Eastern Black Swallowtail Butterfly lays its eggs on members of the Apiaceae or carrot family. I discovered my new friend happily nomming on some curly parsley, but females will oviposit on carrots, dill, Queen Anne's Lace, and fennel but will also accept rue as a more novel host. The early instar caterpillars resemble bird droppings in shape and coloration, but after molting are characterized by black bands and yellow spots. Short-photoperiod (fall) caterpillars that will overwinter as pupae are brown and long-photoperiod (summer) caterpillars who do not pupate so long are green. One pretty cool thing about these guys is that the caterpillars have a gland held behind the head capsule called the osmenterium. It's an orange, forked gland that resembles horns or a snake's tongue (swallowtail caterpillars tend to have characteristics that are snakelike to fool predators) and smells pretty terrible. After the caterpillar has eaten all he or she can possibly eat, it will pupate within a suspended chrysalis, which can be either green or brown depending on the environment. Upon eclosion (emergence from the pupal casing) the butterfly's gender can be determined by wing markings. Wings of both sexes are mainly black with a conspicuous orange spot, but males have a yellow band at the bottom of the hindwing and females have an iridescent blue band. This species is common throughout the North American continent and is the state butterfly of Oklahoma.
June 07, 2013
Greetings EpicDuelists! Unfortunately there is no release today, but I have emerged from the nest of dry erase boards to give you more details about the upcoming war and talk a little about the planning process. It's sometimes challenging to pick what to say and what to hold onto when certain points are still uncertain, but I shall do my best.
Before The Dread War officially begins, Delta V will be receiving a much-needed facelift. From the Barrens to the Bio Dome, Delta V will be reshaped with the most advanced satellite imaging technology (i.e. drawn better.) with the ability to zoom in on any known region. This will allow quick jumping to individual areas of interest within each region, making navigation much quicker. This quick jumping with be essential for reaching contested areas in the War.
The main focus of the Dread War will be this objective, as seen in the background of the first of many areas of the Dread Plains. This apparatus is the top of a massive control array. What does it control?
The Legion or Exile forces that gain and hold control of this structure will find out. Capturing this array will not be quite so simple, however. In order to have the best chance of taking it, you will need to capture surrounding support structures: turrets, shield generators, propaganda speakers, etc... These structures will confer great benefits to those who hold them and will be essential for turning the tide of the Dread War.
How do you capture these objectives? Battle. You will need to visit the physical location of the objective and queue for battle. Battle victories will award influence, but this time the influence will apply toward the objective's capture bar. Unlike the old Flag system that allows Factions to collect, store, and dump a massive amount of Battle Tokens to secure a flag, these points can only be captured by the collective efforts of all Factions of an alignment. Top Factions will still be honored, but the emphasis will be more on the alignment vs. alignment struggle rather than Faction vs. Faction.
Similar to the Infernal War, everyone will soon be required to choose an alignment. To discourage people from piling on the "winning" team, switching alignment will not be easy so we recommend deciding in advance.
We want to be very careful with the upcoming Faction War. We have always believed that Factions would be the driving purpose for playing EpicDuel. We've added some features to cultivate conflict among Factions, but it never felt connected. Depositing tokens or firing a cannon at an arbitrary target, while novel at first, never really captured the feeling of all-out war that we wanted to convey. Wars are exciting, but require a tremendous amount of upkeep and preparation.
Our goal with the new war system is to provide ongoing entertainment and excitement for EpicDuelists of all levels and classes, Varium and non-Varium. We want to provide recognition and incentives at the personal, Faction, and alignment levels to motivate everyone to participate. These are lofty goals, but with enough planning, we can deliver a system that meets our criteria and surpasses expectations.
The boards are full and our heads or packed with ideas. Now all that remains is execution. This will be a War to remember -- Delta V will never be the same!
May 23, 2013
The Dread War
Hey there, EpicDuelists! Ready for your heaping helping of Design Notes, served just the way mama likes 'em? Whose mama I'm not really sure. It's not my mama. But apparently she likes the way I write Design Notes. So, let's get started, shall we?
To commemorate the upcoming war, we'll be offering special packages with Legion and Exile goodies for your dueling pleasure. Each pack comes with a Physical Mutating weapon and an Energy Mutating Weapon, which come equipped with the Exile Strike Core (for Exiles), or the Legion Strike Core (for Legionnaires) that call in reinforcements against the opposing alignment.
To make battles a bit more engaging, passive skills are being converted into active skills. With so many points to distribute at the level cap, very little is sacrificed by investing in passives, to the point that they become requirements for most viable builds. Although not all passives will be converted to active skills this release, eventually we would like them all to become active.
Another long-overlooked area has been energy regain for mercenaries, so that class will now be given an energy regain skill. Since many of the changes are still in the testing phase, look for more specific balance changes in tomorrow's patch notes!
The Dread Plains
East of the Barrens lays the plains of Kiirdosh. At least, that's what they were called long ago. After the Kiirdosh Mountains were leveled for Varium mining, the plains were not suitable for human life, and the mountain lizard-goats and dire wolves took over the abandoned mining outposts. However, below the rich volcanic soil and pure groundwater are lodes and lodes of precious gems, and fuel sources, so Legion and Exile forces alike venture into the Dread Plains for the economic resources it contains.
The Plains are currently held by the Legion and overseen by the terrifying Administrator 10. There is a name he uses for official records, but like many coming from the Syndicate, it is not the name he was given at birth. During the Uprising, many of Delta V's criminal element aligned themselves with Oz and the Exiles, and seeing his opportunity to forge a new life for himself, he traded his criminal allies for a cushy spot in the Administration. However, excepting all of her bad qualities Alydriah values loyalty and trustworthiness. This dishonorable man could not be trusted with the health and welfare of Delta V's populace, so although he is technically the administrator of Fortune City's 10th District, his talent for underhanded tactics is much better suited for a post far, far away from the seat of the Administration. But his hold on the area is tenuous, and after feeling the sting of defeat at the hands of John St. Alban last year, Administrator Descarl isn't taking any chances and is personally supporting the Administrator in this endeavor.
October 03, 2012
The Chairman has been on Delta V for nearly a week and already he grows impatient with his hosts. His diabolical offerings have kept the citizens from expelling him thus far, but Baelius is still a no-show. Shuttles are now approaching with a hoards of EbilCorp goons, and the Chairman's promises of wealth and power have swayed some locals to his cause.
Events are escalating quickly as local authorities seem unable to make a move against the EbilCorp incursion. Will Delta V be under new management permanently? What are the Chairman's true intentions? Who taught the Bio Hazard how to tie a tie? All will be revealed soon!
'Tis the season to unveil new styles -- 18 to be precise (3 for each base class and gender). These styles will have an EbilCorp flavor to them. Visit any style change bot around Delta V to check out these sinister new styles.
Rabblefroth has been hard at work expanding the functionality of our style purchasing system. After this release, unlocking a single style will unlock all similar styles across all classes (i.e. wolf style, bio hazard, dragon slayer). We will apply this retroactively to those who have already purchased styles, so you should notice way more styles unlocked when you change classes!
To further satisfy your hunger for style, we will be offering a new bonus package that includes a jumbo pack of styles! This promotion will includes new EbilCorp styles. This does not mean that we will be removing any current promotions, just that we will be adding a new one.
If you play as a Male Mage or Hunter, you may have noticed that you have fewer basic styles than Mercenaries. Maybe you haven't. In any case, we're correcting that oversight by adding 1 new default style to Mages and 2 new default styles for Hunters. Huzzah!
Existing styles not your...uh...style? Remember, we're hosting a hairstyle design contest in the forums RIGHT NOW! Submit your creations for a chance to win ALL THE STYLES available in game at the time of contest's end as well as seeing your own design used in game! You have until the 26 of October, so sharpen those pencils and do your best!
In case you missed it last week, the seasonal Harvest Festival home items are now available for purchase. You will also have the opportunity to acquire the beautiful winning posters created for our account safety awareness art contest! Hang them proudly in your homes to show that you know how to keep your account secure, and encourage others to do the same!
The weapons are not ready for this week, but we are currently culling the forums for the best item suggestions for vectorization. I would like to remind all of those participating that plagarism will not be tolerated. Furthermore, a comment from a mod or dev like "nice sword" should not be taken as a guarantee that the suggestion will be used. Art posted on Twitter and FB will not be considered unless it is posted in the forums as well.
Also, be sure to follow our assistant artist, Disturbed's, Twitter for his progress as he vectorizes the best suggestions!
Suggestion shops are always a breath of fresh air into the game's expansive inventory and I wish we could do them more frequently. That said, I have a feeling this shop will be the best one yet! Thank you and good luck!
August 14, 2012
The Vault Is Open
The final vault door has fallen to the Exile forces! John St. Alban, the man known as The Lawman has commanded the Exiles to victory over Silas and his Legion army and now has control over Baelius' most horrifying experiment - a cybernetic army harvested from the civilian population of Delta V. Now all he has to do is figure out how to turn all of them on!
Fortunately for the players, Ulysses has been able to activate a few and the Lawman has seen fit to sell them to Legion and Exile forces alike to finance his next project. Whoever figures out how to activate them all will have an army of millions of cyborgs at his or her disposal.
But what of the Legion? How will they fare in the aftermath of this war? The Lawman seems content to let the soldiers go free, but you can bet Alydriah won't let this insult go unanswered!
Also, this Thursday we will be removing most of the War content including Missions, War Battles, and War Achievements. War weapons will be reallocated to the Light Mechachillid at the front of the Mines and the Exile Soldier in the Delta Vault. Players will also be able to sell back grenades for 15-25 Credits. You may be disappointed if you were hoping for a high sellback, but we warned players repeatedly that it would be better to throw them than keep them.
What Was THAT?!
Those of you who saw the end cutscene know what I'm talking about. EpicDuel is indeed planning a crossover event with MechQuest to coincide with DragonCon. We have never confirmed or denied whether or not EpicDuel takes place in the Lore Universe, but space is a big place, and there are monsters out there that transcend time and reality! How did this creature arrive at Delta V? Is it friend or foe? I guess you'll have to wait and see!
Before we say goodbye to the Infernal Mines, we will be adding a new credit-only Infernal Apartment! Be sure to decorate your new digs with a selection of Infernal items ranging from Stalagmites to Mechachillid statues!
After much player discussion on the matter, this week we will be addressing bot balance. Some bot skills are wildly better than others so we will be tweaking them to encourage a better variety of effective bot strategies.
Call for Spanish Translators
Account Recovery and Security
It seems like we've been getting a lot of players lately emailing us directly about account and payment issues. If you are unable to access your account because you have been hacked, or you made a payment and have not received any points, please contact the Artix Help Team as soon as possible http://portal.battleon.com/help/mailer.asp?c=10
We have a hardworking staff of support professionals (real, human people last I checked) who are 100% dedicated to helping you fix your account. Contacting us on social networks through email will not help you get your account back any faster, and because we spend most of our time building EpicDuel, any time we might spend fixing accounts is less time we would spend building features, fixing bugs, and drawing content.
That said, here are some simple yet helpful tips for helping you protect your account from hackers and scammers:
August 01, 2012
The End Is Near
War is Ending... Who Will Prevail?
The Infernal Infiltration War is rapidly coming to its epic conclusion, and it’s still anyone’s game. Legion! Do the Administrator proud and bash down that door before the Lawman gets his grubby hands on imperial property! Exiles! Don’t you know about the rumors about what’s in there? Treasure, weapons... you name it. Are you just going to let the Legion have that? Remember what the Legion did to those poor Yetis? See your Generals for a final rallying cry!
Remember, the winner of this vault will determine the fate of the Vault’s contents, and Delta V.
Everybody’s been asking about the grenades, and whether they will have Varium sellback after the War. We’ve decided that they’ll have credit-only sellback, so stockpiling the dropped grenades or grenades from the missions (remember, there are missions for FREE grenades) in the hope of getting Varium is not useful. Grenades are happiest when thrown!
Some players were concerned about moderator participations, as I’m sure you’ve seen us playing in the War. Moderators are able to participate, but we must adhere to guidelines with regard to using grenades and war participation. As some players who’ve been partnered with me know, having a mod on your side is not a guarantee of success, and we don’t get grenades or drops at any greater frequency than you. Mods are also prohibited from being on the tops of the war boards.
Also, the credit-only mechachillid weapons were mistakenly tagged as seasonal rare, when they are in fact permanently rare. They will be getting one additional enhancement slot with the correction.
We forgot to mention it in last week's Design Notes (it was in the patch notes), but we are currently offering a limited-time achievement to commemorate the 2012 Olympics in London. It will be available until August 17th, which should be enough time to collect the 2012 Tokens necessary to claim it!
Mechachillids? In MY AQW? It’s more likely than you think.
One of the Mechachillid drones, Roggark, somehow found his way into Battleon looking for recruits to defend the Vaults! He’ll be selling some of the discarded exoskeletons to Lore’s denizens... but they can only be used on Lore. Funny thing about that. See the AQW design notes for more info!
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
July 17, 2012
Break on Through to the Other Side
Go, Exiles, Go...#RandyNewman
Congratulations, Exiles, for felling the second Vault door. With things as they stand right now, it’s anyone’s game and the Exiles and Legion will both have to work hard to punch through the remaining doors.
Before going on, I want to clear up some rumors that have been floating around. No, the Administration is not playing favorites with alignment. Both Exiles and Legion had equal chance to get the Vault Breaker II Achievement, and yes, Legion had to wait 2 extra hours to unlock level 35. There was also no help from the Administration for the Exiles- we did not orchestrate the Exiles winning one Vault. We want this war to be fun and fair and we will not do anything, nor have we done anything, to artificially alter the course of the War. This is all you, guys!
That said, let’s get into the meat of it!
This Vault Door will be the final Vault Door before the Big One. The Alignment that breaks down this door will have exclusive access to the Vault Breaker III achievement, as well as the powerful Magma Grenade, which weakens the Vault’s shields and makes subsequent attacks more damaging!
Both sides will have access to new Auxiliary weapons in both credit-only and varium flavors: The Mecha Disintegrator and Mecha Launcher, Super Mecha Destroyer and Super Mecha Launcher. These weapons will have the special ability Infernal Spirit, combining with the sidearms and Mechachillid armors for maximum damage and defense against the Vault!
In addition, you’ll have access to the Mechachillid Cruiser! Vroom Vroom!
We will also be adding TWO additional tier to the Vault Cracker achievement to reward players who are really, REALLY punishing those Vault doors!
Having trouble getting bombs to drop? Well, Players should report to their Lieutenants (Valestra for the Legion and Ulysses for the Exiles) for mission chains that will award all kinds of grenades, as well as some insights into some of the characters’ motivations. I had great fun thinking about Habuki and his character, his past, etc. This chain will unlock another short arc about the St. Alban family and their issues, including some answers about why Cinderella supports the Legion, while her father and sister support the Exiles. This chain will also award more war grenades.
Security Awareness Art Contest Winners!
Thank you to each and every one of you who entered the Art Contest! We’ve gone through every submission; we saw a lot of great art, and a lot of... interesting art and finally narrowed it down to the winners! So, without any further ado, congratulations to the following players!
First, the Honorable Mentions. These players will be awarded an achievement reflecting their excellence!
Wind: “EpicDuel Moderator Squidlings, Working Hard to protect you”
Ddog 81: “The BAN-HAMMER!”
Shadow2221: “Free Varium... are you kidding me?”
Blocky Bounty: “Nothing in life is free”
luminitos: “EpicDuel’s Ten Most Wanted List”
The First Place Winners will be awarded an achievement plus an exclusive home item and 1500 Varium!
mieteor: “My Precious”
Battle Elf: “Don’t let evil trick you!”
And finally, the Grand Prize Winner, who gets the cheevo, home item, and 10K varium package is...
..trizzzcentrino.. for the entry “be smart, play safe”!
Congratulations to all of the winners, and thanks again to all who participated. Also, if you didn’t win, don’t get discouraged- it doesn’t mean that your artwork was bad or sub-par, only that it wasn’t what we were looking for at this time. Thank you for participating!
*Achievements and in-game home items won't be awarded until the release on Friday.
July 11, 2012
Knocking Down Doors
Hey there EpicDuelists- we’re coming up to another Friday the 13th (along with the return of the F13 cheevo) and the continuation of the Infernal Infiltration War!
Legion may have felled the first Vault door, but there’s still time for the Exiles to catch up, with the 2nd Vault battle already underway!
Master of Unlocking
The Second Vault Door is already feeling the pain (metaphorically speaking- the Vault Door is a Door, and cannot feel pain) of thousands of both Legion and Exile soldiers. And players will have something valuable to fight for- upon the collapse of the Second Vault Door, Level 35 will be available for your grinding pleasure!
Along with unlocking Level 35, behind the door is a shop featuring Level 35 Sidearms (in both credit and varium flavors) that include the new special Infernal Spirit! This allows you to inflict +2 damage against the Vault and +2 Defense against its attacks. For a player wearing the Mechachillid armor, and wielding the Infernal Interdictor, this means that that Vault door doesn’t stand a chance!
When life gives you gren, make grenades!
We’ll be introducing four NEW grenades to make the battle against the Vault even more epic: The Stagrenade, Crystal Grenade, Hammer Grenade, and the Short Circuit Grenade. While all four will be available for purchase, anyone can get one of these grenades via a drop.
For more information, on how these Grenades work, check out this video on EpicDuel's Official Youtube Channel!
As stated above, all of these grenades are available as War Battle Drops (or as rewards for upcoming War missions), as well as for purchase.
If you manage to get a chance between bashing down the Vault door, AQW’s Friday the 13th event featuring Voltaire, the Beast Maker, and the Sleezter Bunny will be going LIVE on Friday. And if you’re as much of an audiophile as I am, you’ll love hearing Voltaire’s dulcet tones accompanying you through a voyage of mirth, mayhem, and weird hellbeasts.
HeroSmash’s Cirque du Freak will also be making its regular F13 appearance. So, lots of fun to be had even if you aren’t fighting the Vault. But, really, you should be fighting the Vault. ;)
What? No Insect Facts?
Don’t want to keep you away from the War for TOO long ;) Also, I’ll be doing some field work later this summer, so maybe Night will let me talk a little tiny bit about what I do beyond writing for ED. Also, some of the academic reading I’ve been doing is going into the quests. >::3
July 06, 2012
Baelius was no fool and whatever he buried in the mines, he didn't want it to be uncovered. The first door has fallen to the Legion, and Mechachillids are already hard at work removing the rubble to reveal the next door, moving the Legion forces one step closer to claiming the Vault's contents for their own!
But don't count the Exiles out just yet. This is still The Lawman's turf, and he's not going to give up so easily, especially when the fighting just got interesting. What tricks does he have stored up those dusty sleeves of his, anyway?
Credit Where Credit Is Due
The brave Legion warriors who aggressively smashed through the Vaults millions of hit points in under a week deserve a hearty round of applause. The AI-based entity, M4tr1x will be waiting for you beyond the first door to offer you a Vault Breaker Achievement and rare Mechachillid Armor!
My Skeleton; Your Shield
Mechachillids reproduce by gathering scrap metal from derelict mining facilities and the surface to build new Mechachillids. Sometimes, a Mechachillid will "outgrow" it's current shell and seek to replace it with newer metals and more efficient power supplies. This process is known as molting, and the end result is tons of empty Mechachillid husks scattered throughout the mines. The technology necessary to reanimate these husks is expensive and rare on Delta V in its current state, but it still makes an effective combat ready armor. Mechachillid armors come with an inherent Exoskeleton skill.
Exoskeleton - The Mechachillids were designed to withstand conditions lethal to humans, especially those found in the Infernal Mines. By wearing Mechachillid armor, players are granted increased resistance against the Vault's lethal security systems.
Remember to check the style change bots around Delta V! Each gender and class is getting 3 new Mechachillid styles (a total of 18).
Forged from the same rare crystals as the Infernal Slayer, the Infernal Interdictor is a sight to be feared on any battlefield. Help your alignment secure the Vault by acquiring this rare, impressive weapon, which comes with a devastating new skill, Massive Strike. Visit the Light Mechachillid at the screen just beyond the Refinery Entrance to purchase it in game or get both level 25 and 35 variants for free with the 10K Varium package.
Massive Strike - The mysterious crystals powering the Infernal Interdictor grant its wielder superhuman strength. The reinforced steel of the Vault doors yield to its power and critical strikes have the ability to knock even the strongest opponents to their knees, inflicting massive damage.
One Level Deeper
As players from both alignments descend deeper into the mines, be prepared for more exciting new content as this conflict continues to boil beneath the surface of Delta V!
June 20, 2012
Brace Yourselves: War is Coming
Hey there EpicDuelists. After a brief hiatus where I was working on HeroSmash, we are back with our regular helping of Design Notes. These are gonna be extra meaty today, so make sure you have a good appetite for news!
Infernal Infiltration War
Originally, we planned to release the War this Friday, but after some massive discussions involving the proposed features for the Infernal Infiltration War, including new battle types, new NPC AI, and new consumables, we determined that it will be better to release a fully tested and polished version of the War next week rather than a buggy, less spectacular version this week.
However, we do plan to have a working prototype for Friday so our testers can create some awesome preview videos and demonstrate some of the War's exciting new features! This is disappointing short term news, but we are confident it will be worth the wait!
During the Conflict, players should report to their alignment’s 4 officers. Each side has a General, Lieutenant, 3rd Officer, and Auxiliary Officer. The War Officers are (in order) Exile: John St. Alban (The Lawman), Ulysses, Galatea, and Selina; Legion: Silas Auer (Administrator 7), Valestra, Nightwraith, and Ella St. Alban (Cinderella). There will be NPC adjustments and improvements soon- the Lawman’s revamp is going live with the start of the war, with revamps to Ella and Valestra soon to follow.
Attack the Vault
Ok, here’s the real meat and potatoes. This war will function differently than Frysteland- we’ve learned from our mistakes and we’re ready to take on this next challenge. Basically, this is set up as a race to the finish. Instead of strictly Legion vs. Exile, both Legion and Exile players will be punching through the Vault gates. Baelius spared no expense when securing the Delta Vault so the Vault doors are protected by multiple layers of shielding to protect the them from human activity. When breached, each level of protection releases a special “something” that will be discovered when that level of defense is breached. What is the reward? That’s for you to discover!
So, how are you getting through the Vault's defenses? You’ll be using grenades, available from drops or by purchase, to inflict massive damage on the Vault doors. ALL grenades will be available as drops (no exceptions), so anyone can use any bomb on the doors. There will also be mission chains that award even more war bombs! The catch is the Vault doors fight back! How long can you last against its devastating security systems? We will be featuring the most devastating players in Infernal War leaderboards!
The Mechachillids are, understandably, not happy about surface dwellers ransacking their home, so they’re sending Mechachillid soldiers out into the world to bring you down in a new battle mode. Random 1v1 or 2v2 battles have a chance to match you with a Mechachillid AI opponent or ally!
Loyalty is the Key
Just a reminder that the special Alignment Shops will remain open for the duration of the conflict, and will be periodically updated with more items (though not this week). Don’t like what’s available? After the Infernal Infiltration War is won, the Legion or Exile Key will be converted into an achievement!
But remember- choose your alignment wisely. Once you’ve chosen a side during wartime, there’s no turning back. You may still leave an Exile faction and rejoin another Exile faction, but there will be absolutely no turncoating during the Infernal Infiltration War.
New War Cheevos
Along with a new War comes new War Ranks- the stats for each rank are the same as they were for the Frysteland War and the player with the most points for his or her alignment (in this case, the one who inflicts the most damage upon the vault) at reset will win the Infernal War Hero achievement! Yay!
Honeybees (Apis mellifera) are well known for their production of honey, which is formed by purifying and concentrating the nectar harvested by workers. The worker regurgitates the honey into cells in the hive several times to treat the nectar with the enzyme invertase (which breaks sucrose into its monosaccharide components glucose and fructose) and lower the water content, making it into a sticky syrup. The honey is then consumed by the colony members, including the larvae.
However, this is not the only food consumed by bees. All larvae are fed initially with Royal Jelly, which is secreted from the mouthparts of workers. Royal Jelly is a high-quality nutritious food high in B vitamins and fatty acids, and female larvae that are destined to become Queens are fed Royal Jelly spiked with Royalactin. This peptide causes stimulation and maturation of the ovaries, which differentiates her from her sterile worker sisters.
May 30, 2012
Summer of EpicDuel
Hi there, EpicDuelists! As we wrap up Spring (is there a Pony song for that?) we have some pretty great things to keep you entertained while we’re preparing for the Infernal Infiltration War!
Gently Down the Livestream
Thank you to all of you who participated in the latest EpicDuel Developer Livestream. We want to publicly apologize to all of you for allowing Practel to sing- it’ll just be me singing from now on. The stream is still up, so you’ll be able to watch the creation of one of the NEW War NPCs!
Many players were upset by the fact that the latest round of missions were geared toward higher level players. Lower-level players will be able to play some permanent chains for some nice rewards this week!
While war is brewing deep in the mines, not everyone is focused on the conflict at hand. Brunson’s Mama is preparing a very special feast, and she needs help from players of all levels (including the very lowest level players) to prepare her scrumptious morsels.
Midlevel players will be able to start a chain from Mirv. Both of these chains give credit and battle token rewards, along with another special surprise for players.
We are running a special contest for all EpicDuel players to raise awareness of account security. Nightwraith already wrote up a great description of the contest, so I’m just going to quote the whole thing:
You can submit entries on the ArtixEntertainment forum. Entries will ONLY be considered if posted here (http://forums2.battleon.com/f/tm.asp?m=20353961). Entries that are tweeted at us or posted on the Facebook fan page or emailed to us without being posted in the forum will NOT be considered. Entries containing a link to a file on your harddrive will not be considered. Entries that we must be your friend on Facebook or that we have to sign up for a site or service to see will not be considered.
As I’m sure this will come up: my advice to everyone who is designing a poster is to be direct and to the point. We want these to be something that could be placed in-game as a warning poster. We are accepting entries until July, so take your time.
Currently in my area of the United States (the midwestern US), we are experiencing an outbreak of Red Admiral butterflies, who are invading during their migration season. The Red Admiral Vanessa atalanta is a cosmopolitan and charismatic member of the family Nymphalidae, and is recognizable by the red-orange median bands on the forewings and marginal bands on the hindwings. This species has a winter and summer morph, with the winter morph being smaller and duller colored. The adult migrates to the northern part of its range during the Northern Hemisphere’s summer months (ranging from April to October), expanding into Canada. They overwinter in Texas to Florida, and are single-brooded in the northern part of their range and triple-brooded in the southern part of their range.
Interesting among butterflies, the males of the genus Vanessa, which includes species such as the American Lady, Painted Lady, and West Coast Lady, are highly territorial. Territories are typically located in the area between a ring of trees open to light on the west side, or on west-facing walls and will contain several resting spots. Males will defend their territories by chasing an intruder to outmaneuver and confuse the intruder, creating a wind tunnel, and ultimately forcing it away.