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Q4 2018 Schedule Update

Discussion in 'Shroud of the Avatar Discussion Hall' started by SotA Stratics, Sep 27, 2018.

  1. SotA Stratics

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    [From a forum post by Starr “Darkstarr” Long]

    Greetings Avatars,

    As 2018 comes to a close we can reflect on what an amazing year it has been! We moved out of Early Access in March and Collector’s Boxes shipped in Q3! As we have finished our Kickstarter promises we have been able to focus on polish and serious improvements to quality of life! The final quarter of 2018 is going to be amazing with Player Made Dungeons, Fishing Phase 2, Seasonal Content, and more polish![​IMG]

    PLEASE NOTE: The last two releases of the year (Nov/R60 and Dec/R61) will be very early in their respective months so that they are released well ahead of the US winter holidays (Thanksgiving and Christmas).

    Q4 is just a warmup for 2019 which will be an amazing year for Shroud of the Avatar players! Crafting specializations (choose your effects!), Grandmaster Craftsman only effects, more loot improvements, more expansions to the fishing system, better boss fights and more! 2019 will of course culminate with Episode 2 which will have a new story, new lands, a revamp of the Quest and Journal system, a Theater System, Treasure Hunting with treasure maps that show up as loot, Item Affinity, Taming system expansions, Customizable NPCs, and expanded permissions for containers and doors!

    As we have stated previously, we intend to publish quarterly schedule updates detailing our monthly releases and those monthly releases will continue just as before, on the last Thursday of each month. Even though the goals outlined in these schedules are likely to change somewhat as we react to feedback, we feel it is important to periodically provide you with an updated roadmap.

    Our priority continues to be to deliver new content to our players regularly, so that you can give us feedback that will help us iteratively improve Shroud of the Avatar. This collaborative process continues to benefit the game, and often results in sweeping changes such as the recent balance passes to combat. As you have seen in previous releases, the flexibility inherent to this process means that we sometimes push things out, but we also often pull new things in.

    Q4 Top 10 Priorities: As mentioned previously we keep a running list of our Top 10 priorities at all times that we use when building our schedule and prioritizing where to allocate our team’s resources. We often refer to it when making decisions about the project. While it has a VERY strong influence on what we work on at any given time, it does not mean that we only work on something that is on the list. It just means that if someone can assist with something that will help address an item on the list, then we will make sure they do that first before working on anything else. Sometimes team members cannot assist with anything on our top priorities, so they work on other tasks such as visual polish, combat balance, or content that helps us raise funds. Q4 will focus on lots of polish including systems, user interface, bug fixing, loot, performance, new user experience, as well as continued improvements to quality of life. We will also be upgrading the Fishing system, adding seasonal content for Halloween and Winter, and adding the new Player Made Dungeon feature.

    1. Quality of Life: Midway through Q3 we shifted focus to general improvements to quality of life by starting to remove slowdowns and annoyances in gameplay. We will continue this effort in Q4.
    2. Systems Polish: Polishing and improving existing systems will continue to be a major focus of Q4. This will take priority over new systems.
    3. Bug Fixing: We will continue to focus more on fixing bugs versus new content and new features.
    4. Performance: While the game is much more playable now we feel there is still more to be gained so in Q4 we will continue making code and content changes to improve performance.
    5. User Interface Polish: In Q3, we polished various UI elements and we will continue to do so during Q4.
    6. Seasonal Content: Content to support Halloween and Winter festivals (Christmas, etc.) will be created.[​IMG]
    7. New User Experience: We will be revisiting the starting areas and new user experience to adjust balance, fix bugs, and generally improve the overall experience for new users. We will also be updating the website.
    8. Improved Reward Cycle: Q4 will focus on a systemic and game-wide upgrade to the quality and quantity of loot.
    9. Fishing & Player Made Dungeons: Fishing Phase 2 will go live including new water types, new fish, and more skills. We will also introduce the new Player Made Dungeons feature.[​IMG]
    10. Shipping Phase 2: Collector’s Boxes will start shipping to those who did not get theirs in the first round and Retail boxes will be available on Amazon along with a limited run of signed retail versions on our website.

    As always, all dates, durations, and deliverables are subject to change as we adjust our designs based on direct feedback from you, our players.

    RELEASE 59, October 25, 2018

    • Story: Each harvest season, Novians warn their children to not go into the fields at night because of Pumpkin Head! The starting areas will be improved with the addition of a new tutorial focused area on the Isle of Storms.[​IMG]
    • Performance: Performance work will mainly focus on improving frame rate and reducing hitching during gameplay. Work will also continue to be done on load time reduction on the few outstanding scenes that are not meeting our 15 second load time target.
    • Bug Fixing: Time will be allocated to a general sweep through all systems, features, and content to reduce overall bug counts.
    • Crafting & Economy: The fishing system will be expanded to include different water types (fresh vs. salt), more fish types, more loot, and other improvements. Additionally there will be systemic and game-wide upgrades to the quality and quantity of loot.
    • Player-Made Dungeons: We will continue to expand and iterate on the system that allows players to place and customize dungeons on their properties. Blueprints and recipes for these dungeons can be found in loot, purchased from in-game merchants, or purchased from the store and then used to craft the various dungeon pieces needed to assemble these dungeons.[​IMG]
    • Player Towns & Player Housing: Updates to Dynamic Player-Owned Towns (POTs) that have locked submission forms will appear in the game.

    RELEASE 60, November 15, 2018

    • Performance: Performance work will mainly focus on improving frame rate and reducing hitching during gameplay. Work will also continue to be done on load time reduction on the few outstanding scenes that are not meeting our 15 second load time target.
    • Bug Fixing: Time will be allocated to a general sweep through all systems, features, and content to reduce overall bug counts.
    • Crafting & Economy: We will continue expansions to the fishing system. We will also dramatically increase the salvage rates for in-game patterns (common patterns will be almost 100%). Additionally we will continue systemic and game-wide upgrades to the quality and quantity of loot.[​IMG]
    • Player Towns & Player Housing: Updates to Dynamic Player-Owned Towns (POTs) that have locked submission forms will appear in the game.
    • Livestream and Seasonal Content: We will add recent livestream stretchgoal items and 2018 Winter items.

    RELEASE 61, December 13, 2018

    • Story: Have you been naughty or nice? The Krampus doesn’t care! He and his captured minions will eat you either way!
    • Performance: Performance work will mainly focus on improving frame rate and reducing hitching during gameplay. Work will also continue to be done on load time reduction on the few outstanding scenes that are not meeting our 15-second load time target.
    • Bug Fixing: Time will be allocated to a general sweep through all systems, features, and content to reduce overall bug counts.
    • Crafting & Economy: Back slot items (cloaks, wings, backpacks, etc.) will now be able to have stats, enchantments, and masterworks associated with them. We will also continue expansions to the fishing system. Additionally we will continue systemic and game-wide upgrades to the quality and quantity of loot.[​IMG]
    • Player Made Dungeons: More features and content will be added to the Player Made Dungeon System.
    • Player Towns & Player Housing: Updates to Dynamic Player-Owned Towns (POTs) that have locked submission forms will appear in the game.
    • Livestream and Seasonal Content: We will add recent livestream stretchgoal items and more 2018 Winter items.[​IMG]

    We continue to be incredibly thankful for the support we receive from this amazing community. While the financial support you provide makes all of this possible, it pales in comparison with the faith you have in us, the feedback you provide us, and the content you are making for everyone to enjoy. We are humbly grateful, and we are always excited to see you each month in New Britannia!

    And remember Q4 is just a warmup for 2019 which will be an amazing year for Shroud of the Avatar players! Crafting specializations (choose your effects!), Grandmaster Craftsman only effects, more loot improvements, more expansions to the fishing system, better boss fights and more! 2019 will of course culminate with Episode 2 which will have a new story, new lands, a revamp of the Quest and Journal system, a Theater System, Treasure Hunting with treasure maps that show up as loot, Item Affinity, Taming system expansions, Customizable NPCs, and expanded permissions for containers and doors!

    Sincerely,
    Starr Long
    Executive Producer
    Shroud of the Avatar

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