Shroud of the Avatar – One Year Retrospective By benk Shroud of the Avatar recently celebrated its 1st anniversary on 7th April. The date marked the passing of one year since the successful funding of the Kickstarter project on April 7th 2013. It seems like such a short time ago yet there is even less time now until the game’s official launch at the end of 2014. Richard Garriott and the Portalarium development team have already grown a strong and passionate community around the game, which Stratics is proud to be a part of. The ‘Pre-Alpha’ releases have demonstrated both the quality and speed of the game’s development in addition to the ethos of not just taking the community on the development journey but making them part of it. So I thought the occasion called for reflection on some of the key milestones and events of the first year. April 2013 7th – Kickstarter funded at $1,919,275 of $1,000,000 goal. 12th – Space Bards announced as the winners of the SotA Fan Video Contest. 28th – Portalarium development team move into new office space. May 2013 1st – Beloved community member and recent addition to the Portalarium team ‘Rustic Dragon’ hosts the ‘Inaugural Dragonsmeet‘ for community members to come together. June 2013 July 2013 5th - Starr Long joins the team, collaborating with Richard Garriott for the first time on a fantasy RPG since Ultima Online. 6th – 3 month gameplay demo revealed at RTX 2013. 25th – First downloadable ‘Dev+ Dungeon Kit’ released for community members to create their own content in Unity. Unity if the game engine SotA is built on. August 2013 24th - Hearth of Brittania host ‘Telethon of the Avatar‘ a 24 hour web stream with guest interviews, community spots and prizes to raise money for SotA. September 2013 3rd – Stratics are honoured to receive our very own ‘Community Spotlight‘. 18th - ’Challenge of the Avatar‘ competition announced with over $10,000 of prizes for the best community developed scene in Unity. October 2013 5th – First ‘Lord of the Manor event‘ held at Britannia Manor in New York City. 31st – SotA 6 month video released with an early look at the game and developer commentary. November 2013 15th – Unity Scene Jam ‘Challenge of the Avatar’ grand prize winner announced. 16th – ‘Lords of the Hearth‘ community event hosted by Rustic Dragon. ~21st – A series of long awaited Spoony interviews with Lord British. 27th – First instalment of ‘Blade of the Avatar‘ by Tracy Hickman and Richard Garriott published. December 2013 12th – Pre-Alpha Release 1 opens to SotA backers with the first opportunity for players to login to the game. 25th – Happy holidays from the Portalarium team and festive in-game swag available on the SotA store. January 2014 24th – Release 2 opens adding new in game features including crafting, additional character customisation and a second town. February 2014 14th – Hearth of Britannia ‘Poetry Slam‘ event for the community to share game inspired poetry for Valentines Day. 20th - Release 3 launches bringing with it the first SotA multiplayer experience. March 2014 20th – Release 4 launches with the Overworld Map System, new scenes, content and many more new features and performance optimisations. April 2014 7th – 1 year anniversary and celebrations. In summary 2014 was a jam packed year in which it is clear the Portalarium team and Richard Garriott, who many invested both their hopes and money in, have worked hard to deliver the game we have all been waiting for so long. I look forward to the year ahead and the Journey Onward. Please share with us your favourite moments from the first year, leave a comment here or head on over to our SotA Stratics forum. Read the full story . . .