Shroud of the Avatar – Update of the Avatar #214

Greetings Fellow Avatars!  I apologize for being late, I am trying to figure out this new schedule I have now. I am hoping to have it where I get these out every Monday.

Here’s what we have for you in this week’s edition of Update of the Avatar:

City Kobolds and Kobold Chests

In Release 39,the devs began work on what they are calling our City Kobolds. These are the Kobolds that live in Skrekk and other places like K’rul. They are  more advanced than anyone else in Novia and the source of much of the technology that you see in the game, including clockwork creatures and aether vibration amplifiers. City Kobolds use advanced armor and weaponry including chainswords, electric axes, gas guns, electric blunderbusses, grenades, etc.

In some cases, City Kobolds are friendly to players (depending on story elements) and there are rumors of City Kobold Merchants who sell rare Kobold technology to players. The other Kobolds players have interacted with until now have been what are called Village Kobolds, and will remain what players encounter in outdoor zones and small Kobold habitations. In Release 39, you will be able to find our first round of City Kobolds in K’rul. In Release 40 the devs will be updating Skrekk with City Kobold, including a new unique visual for King Kobarr.


[A Dev+ Forum Post by Fletcher “SkullMuncher34” Kinnear and Matt “matpsch” Schmitz]

Greetings all!

So as some of you know, we’re starting to flesh-out the Kobolds in our game. Giving them their own unique gear indicative to their culture and technology. We just now got done modeling the Brawler and Gunner types. In the next release, they will be equipped with chainswords and electric blunderbusses respectively. In addition, we are also working on touching up the sounds and voices they will make — which are gnarly to say the least…

Take a gander and stay tuned for Release 39!



Here’s a brief glimpse of how you might see Kobolds interacting as in-game NPCs…

Patterns: Gear and Decoration Reshaping


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

Greetings Avatars,

In Release 39, we are going to be launching our system for reshaping items in the game that we call “Patterns”. This system will allow players to change the visual appearance of many items in the game while preserving the functionality and data associated with that item. In the case of a weapon, that means that it will still retain all of its stats including damage per second, durability, enchantments, etc. even though it looks different. Patterns will work on gear and decorations.

For R39, we are focusing on Patterns for gear (armor and weapons). Patterns are used to reshape existing pieces of gear in much the same way you would enchant that gear at a crafting station. You take a weapon or a piece of armor to the appropriate station (ex. Longbow to a carpentry station) and then use a pattern to reshape that item into something visually different. Patterns can be obtained through purchase and from inside the game.

Purchased: This includes items from pledges, add-on store, and bundles.

  • Patterns in Pattern Packs: These patterns are consumed when used, so can only be used exactly once. They come in packs of 6 or more.
  • Eternal Patterns inside Gear: When you buy a suit of armor or a functional weapon (add on store, pledge, bundle, etc) this gear has starter level stats, is non-lootable, is indestructible, and cannot be enchanted/masterworked. If you want to use the item in crafting it can be salvaged for an “Eternal Pattern”. When you do this salvage you have a 100% chance to get the Eternal Pattern from the gear. Please note that this forfeits all of its protections from destruction and PVP loot-ability. That eternal pattern can be used just like a regular pattern with the critical difference that it can be recovered by salvaging the item that it was applied to. This allows anyone who purchased gear or got gear from pledges to make exactly 1 item at a time from their gear if they choose. This also preserves the rarity of those items while allowing them to be used in the crafting system.

In-Game: These are patterns gained from loot in the game. Note that these will be visually distinct from the purchased patterns.

  • Patterns inside Gear: These are gained from salvaging gear found on enemies in the game. These will be the primary source of patterns inside the game. We intend to have at least as many of these in-game patterns as there are of the purchased variety, if not more. There will be varying degrees of rarity for these patterns. For instance, katana patterns might be fairly easy to gain by salvaging katanas from bandits along the Perennial Coast, but the pattern for the Dastardly Vile Sword that Nefario the Obsidian Cabalist wields in the Town sieges might be almost impossible to get. Note that your chance to get a pattern from salvaging in-game items will depend on your salvage skill and the level of the item.
  • Other Patterns: We are also considering having some patterns found directly as loot or available for purchase in game for gold from merchants, but this will be an exception.

Crafting: There will be a series of recipes similar to enchantments (with wildcards) with no skill requirement, such that anyone can use these patterns at a crafting station to remake their gear. Everyone will automatically have these recipes in their recipe book as well. The recipes will be based on item type and crafting station type. Reshaping will be restricted to the item type so that you can only reshape a 2-handed sword using a 2-handed sword pattern (i.e. you can’t make a 2-handed sword look like a dagger). Please note that Patterns do NOT replace any recipes nor do these allow you to make any items from scratch. These only allow you to modify existing crafted items.

Example recipes

  • Reshape 2-Handed Sword: (Blacksmithing)
    • Katana Pattern
    • Any 2-Handed Sword
    • Chunk of Coal (2)
    • Smithing Hammer
  • Reshape Leather Chest Armor: (Tailoring)
    • Elven Elder Chest Armor Pattern
    • Any Leather Chest Armor
    • Wax (3)
    • Tailoring Scissors
  • Reshape Longbow: (Carpentry)
    • Ornate Elven Longbow Pattern
    • Any Longbow
    • Wax (3)
    • Carpentry Hammer

To celebrate the launch of the Patterns system, we are releasing our first pattern the Ornate Flamberge for a limited time! Our very own Fletcher “Skullmuncher” Kinnear designed this beautiful sword and it will only be available through the end of the Spring Telethon. Flamberge Pattern Packs, as well as the weapon itself (with the eternal pattern inside), are available for purchase in the Add-On store.

The Making of Upper Fortus

[A Dev+ Forum Post by Chris “Sea Wolf” Wolf]

I have a few updated screenshots to share. Enjoy!

The Canyon (notice the updates to the mushrooms, including materials and vines)

The Kobold Village

The Bridge

Path to the Human Settlement

The Fortus RiverThe Canyon

The Making of Rhun Ruins

The Rhun Ruins are one of the six ruined cities found in Novia that date back to the period in Novian history in which the Obsidian Order rose to power. (As described in the Sword of Midras prequel novel by Tracy Hickman and Richard Garriott). The exact history of some of these cities has been lost to time, but it is rumored that some of them may have been abandoned even before the rise of the Obsidians. Rhun was a city devoted to Compassion but has since been overrun with the undead. It is located in the Drachvald region in the northeast of Novia.

[From a Dev+ Forum Post by Esteben “SorcerousSteve” Zaldivar]

Hey guys! SorcerousSteve here to give you an update on progress on Rhun Ruins!

This week I began further detail work on areas of the map, alongside adding more traps and making sure there are plenty of corridors, alleys, destroyed buildings and overall environmental clutter to provide an engaging PVP experience.

More interactive hazards and traps have been added to the Maze area, such as this pressure plate which under the right (or wrong) hands can turn the center area into an inferno!

Areas like the one below, nicknamed “The Killing Fields” by Lord British, are filled with plenty of deer blinds and perfect places for archers to stand guard and attack. In building this map, I was inspired a lot by the architecture found in the city Minas Tirith, such as this sloping city street that features multi-story buildings alongside jagged cliffs.

These huge gaping holes in the ground are remnants of what was left behind when obsidian shards ripped those floating islands off the ground.

The corruption brought along by Obsidian shards causes alien life to fill some of the ruined areas .

See ya next time!
Esteben Zaldivar
Level Designer

The Making of K’rawl

The undeground Kobold lab called K’rul is connected to the Kobold capital city of Skrekk through a long shipping tunnel called K’rawl that includes moving mine carts! The goal is to have a first iteration of this dungeon live in the game for Release 39.

[A Dev+ Forum Post by Travis “Vas Corp Por” Koleski]

Some early shots of the mine cart connection area between K’RUL and Skrek:

More to come soon!