Shroud of the Avatar – Update of the Avatar #251

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

Game Development

Play Release 47 Now!

Release 47 successfully October 26 with new content to explore, including:

  • Reduced Load Times
  • Story Polish
  • More Side Quests
  • Highvale Outskirts Polish
  • Starting Scene Polish
  • Blackblade Foothills (new)
  • North Midmaer Way (new)
  • North Quel Way (new)
  • New Artifacts
  • Unique Components (Elven Bowstrings)
  • Named / Boss Components (Torc’Dawl’s 2H Axe Blade)
  • Increased Pattern Salvage Chances
  • New Recipes
  • Scene Labels
  • Scene Information
  • Combat Balance
  • Fall Holiday Items
  • Telethon Items
  • SeedInvest Items
  • Hospital Make a Difference Items
  • New Emotes
  • R46 Lot Deed Raffle Winners

…and much more

Check out the Release 47 Instructions update for detailed information about all the new content.


Release 47 Player Instructions

Release 47 Known Issues

The Making of the Oracle Temple [SPOILERS!]

[From a Post by Michael “Hutch” Hutchison]

SPOILER ALERT! This post contains spoilers for the Oracle Temple scene that is the story climax of Episode 1…

Hello All,

With R47, we have finished the art requirements for the climactic Oracle Temple scene! When I stopped to consider the long road leading up to this point, I was struck by how this scene, perhaps more than any other single scene in the game, involved contributions from nearly every member of the Shroud team, either directly or indirectly. It is also a great example of how our iterative process worked to build one thing upon another.

Like anything else it all started with an idea. In this case, it was Richard’s initial idea that was the creative spark, and what followed was a process of evolution over years, as ideas changed, and grew, and became fully formed. Development of the objects, characters, and story followed a sequence of connected tasks, each one informing the next. Over time, it was this deliberate process that built all the smaller parts that contributed to the cohesive whole.

The importance of the Oracle becomes evident from the very first moments of the game, when you meet her in the Confirmatory on the Isle of Storms. That’s part of what makes the Oracle so special – she is there when you start the game, is present throughout your progress, and is there when you ultimately reach the story climax. But long before the Confirmatory was included on the Isle of Storms map in Release 31, the Oracle had already undergone several iterations.

Early Development

Everything started, of course, with Lord British himself. During the initial development of what became Shroud of the Avatar, Richard worked directly with concept artists (beginning very early with Scott Jones and then a bit later with Stephen Daniele) to develop the look of the Oracle architecture, her Watchers, and the Oracle herself.

Early Oracle design as seen in concept art…

…and with the 2013 statue head decoration

While the initial glimpse of the Oracle came in December of 2013 with the Oracle Statue Head (made by former team member Jay Reichman), it would prove to be merely a teaser of what was to come…

[Read More… TLDR: It’s really cool!]

Michael “Hutch” Hutchison
Art Lead

Release 48 Major Artifact Changes

[From a Forum Post by Starr “Darkstarr” Long]

Artifacts will undergo a major refactor in Release 48 in order to better align them with the rest of the economy. In order to not have them directly compete with crafted goods they can no longer be repaired like regular items.

Instead they will only be able to be repaired by salvaging other artifacts to get “Artifact Essences” that will be used in Artifact repair. This will cycle Artifacts out of the economy and require players to re-acquire them periodically or destroy other artifacts (thereby simulating “production”).

Additionally we will make Artifacts a bit more dynamic by giving players the ability to enchant and masterwork them.