Shroud of the Avatar’s R39 adds town shrines, delays room renting

Just ahead of the weekend, Shroud of the Avatar rolled out Release 39, its latest monthly content push, and this one is pretty massive, as the latest newsletter recaps. Players spent the weekend tinkering with new town shrines, crafter patterns, the Path of Courage storyline, combat improvements, journal updates, the ignite weapons polish-up, and additions to Blood River, K’rul, K’rawl, North Drachvald Spur, and Upper Fortus.

What didn’t make it in? Player-rented rooms, ammo refactoring, Obsidian Cabalists, the new agriculture UI, and the Rhun Ruins. “In order to get room renting working properly, we had to entirely refactor how we store and save items in player homes,” says Portalarium. “This in turn led us to realize that we should work on the ability to save a decorated home (and eventually move it) before we do Room Rentals, so we have chosen to delay Room Renting for now.”

The newsletter also includes a look at the Serpent’s Spine Mines rebuild (coming R41) and a peek at the Bloody Bay dungeon known as The Fall (R40 or 41). And if your pledge package includes custom-designed NPCs, the team is collecting entries now for the village of Estgard. You always wanted to be a town guard, right?

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18 Comments on "Shroud of the Avatar’s R39 adds town shrines, delays room renting"

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Russell Hunt

Massivelyop.com can you inquire about when they are going to work on the combat or if they think their combat system is drastically lacking in all elements i.e. sound, animations, etc. Perhaps it’s just me but, for me at least, the combat was a game killer.

Crow
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Crow

I’m genuinely curious why, in a game focused on RP, crafting, exploration and housing, the only thing I ever hear people talking about is the combat?

pepperzine
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pepperzine

I think part of the reason people focus on the combat is because they want to like the game, and that is the major barrier they’re facing.

For me personally, I’d love to play a game that is supposed to fill the shoes of Ultima Online, but I can not get over the combat system this game has. As much as I think I may enjoy other aspects of the game (except for the shenanigans they’re pulling with house sales), I don’t feel comfortable giving them money when the combat is in the state that it is in. I fear I’d give them money only to regret it, but if the combat was improved I’d be willing to give it a shot.

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Darasimi Makinde

This sums me up perfectly. I really, really, really want to love this game, and there are many things about it that I adore, but the combat is just not doing it for me. It would be one thing if the combat was just something I didn’t gel with like WoW’s for instance. But for me, the combat is just badly designed. From the animations to the lack of feedback, to the clunkyness… it’s just off putting for me and it’s really affecting my enjoyment. I’ll keep checking back though and just hope that eventually the game will get to a point where I truly can see past the combat system, or the combat system improves to a point where I’m happy with. I’ll take either :)

Crow
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Crow

I guess I keep going to look at videos and I don’t see the same horror other people do. But maybe for context, I find nothing about TSW’s combat to be a problem for me.

I’m honestly considering grabbing SotA for a number of reasons, but the fact that the “combat first” crowd are so against it is inching me closer to thinking it’ll be right for me. I’d love to run a business and focus on actual crafting that isn’t just a support for combat.

And B2P is pretty good deal. I’m looking into some of the RMT stuff, but I actually like crafting and gameplay where there can be a negative outcome.

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Tandor

I prefer to base my view on the combat in a game on how it feels to me when playing that game, rather than on how it looks in a video. You really can’t judge combat until you’ve tried it. For me, it’s one of the weakest aspects of SoTA, the others being the overland map and the tiny instances that are accessed from it, along with the text window interaction with NPCs which was the norm in the 1980s but is likely to be a real game-breaker for most gamers in the 2010s.

pepperzine
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pepperzine

I can definitely understand your perspective. I’ve been looking for a game with a heavy crafting and RP emphasis like Ultima Online for awhile now, and at one point I was hoping SotA would be that game.

For me though, if a game is going to have the RMT stuff that SotA has, then the rest of the game needs to be immaculate. While combat is not the most important thing in a game to me, I do feel like everything I’ve seen regarding combat in SotA has been underwhelming. To me it shows that they didn’t put as much effort into its development as other aspects of the game. Which would be fine, if those other aspects weren’t attached to RMT. So in essence, I’d like to try it out but they’d either need to tune up their combat or nix the RMT aspect. Out of the two, I think them tweaking their combat is far more likely.

I bought into Shards Online, as the game itself feels a lot like Ultima Online. The combat in the game is nothing I’d brag about to my friends or use as a selling point to get them to play, but because it has the other aspects I’m looking for in a game without the RMT caveats I was willing to give it a chance. While I don’t play it very often at the moment, I don’t regret buying into and look forward to playing it when it is closer to completion. Everything is a balancing act between the pros and the cons, and at the moment the weight of the cons attached to SotA is too much. Hopefully they can remedy that in that the future, at which point I’d gladly give it a chance.

Crow
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Crow

I’ve really been getting tempted to grab it, honestly. It sounds wonderful. I have little jealousy of other peoples’ stuff and I find mechanics that allow for failure and penalty to be far more enjoyable than always winning all the time regardless.

And really, the biggest draw for me so far remains that the “combat is everything” crowd doesn’t like it. That is worth a lot, for me. I may even pick it up out of a certain low-level spite in the end.

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Vagabond Sam

Because the roleplay is dependant on group and not based on game mechanics.

The crafting is RNG rolls to refine equipment with the potential to break dozens of hours worth of gathered material and item degradation is tied to RMT premium currency.

Exploration is not yet viable with small scenes and many, many cloned scenes.

Hosting is RMT based for the deed, outside of winning the lottery and picking the limited selection of in game purchasable/craftable houses.

Combat is the one system that is interactable with no link to RMT. So it’s no surprise that’s often the concern that is voiced.

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KnotaiG

I think we should inquire about why Massivelyop.com constantly runs any and all newsletters about this game and why they run fluff things like this when they ran the exact same thing last week Thursday when this patch was put out.

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Vagabond Sam

I’d like to see an editorial piece about the cash shop and rmt community attached to the game.

Crow
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Crow

I honestly have no idea… could you explain why the RMT is so bad?

Reader
Vagabond Sam

In the last two releases, in order to provide more cool loot on monsters and bosses, the introduced ‘relics’ and ‘patterns’. Relics are items with themed stat bonus that, in some cases, aren’t available through the crafting system, such as the items that affect your gathering skills. Patterns are just items used to reskin an item with an appearance not available when initially crafting an item.

You can buy both of these with $ from player that farm them on the official forums.

It makes farming those item desirable because there is an RMT reward and for me, reduces the cache of obtaining them.

At a more basic level, crafting items all have RMT price tags. So people farm consignments of ore or cotton, or the rarer ingredients and price them for $. So while you may ignore it, others may buy it regularly and surpass your character in the use based leveling to undercut your prices in game because they don;t invest as much time or effort in being a blacksmith.

Perhaps worst for me is high quality housing assets and decorations are all tied to RMT. Either in the add-on store, or selling for the premium currency in game. Therefore you either buy them for $ or premium currency, or you ‘sell’ gold to players for RMT based items to fuel their in game activities.

It exasperated every release by constant additions to the Addon store and a setup that tries to make RMT items ‘collectable commodities’ by making things rare by limiting their sale period which encourages a community that tries to make money by trading the expired items that are no longer available.

Except for a new color swap this year or some other minor change.

It’s a complication to a game that already struggles to find a wide audience I think. But it also is the foundation to many current players motivation so it’s a very tough spot.

Crow
Reader
Crow

Thanks a ton. It is interesting because the RMT economy only really works well when it is rather embedded into the mechanics. I think this is one of the base reasons why EVE works as well as it does and how the valuation in relation to real currency drives a lot of the play directly and indirectly.

From the description, it seems that engaging in supply side for the RMT isn’t that out of the question, and if that can be accessible then it can be a driver and a decent aspect. Is the RMT heavily biased toward sellers, or can producers make small-but-meaningful gains working that angle?

I’ll have to see this all for myself eventually. I’m getting more interested, and frankly the description of the RMT aspects are somewhat intriguing to me, as well. SotA is going to remain a closely watched thing for me, I think.

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Vagabond Sam

In SOTA they are still balancing the game heavily which severely affects the RMT in addition to the way they re-release retired items (new yule tree every year, sought changes).

So it’s not as hands off as eve which has a robust economy around the value of plex

Is difficult to not be very cynical about how much Portalarium influence RMT which detracts from its allure.

They openly state they adjust the rate at which the premium currency drops in game according to the current supply in game which is problematic.

It’s like eve changing the price of plex according to demand.

Also, so far their ‘preferred seller’ program has ‘one’ person and no clear path for others to apply and gain the same visibility despite others asking then about it.

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Wanda Clamshuckr

Agreed. More critical thinking and less promotional pieces.

misanthropomorphic
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misanthropomorphic

Don’t worry, I’m sure they’ll be happy to sell you an “Upgraded Animations Pack” in their online store. But only for a limited time, then it’ll be retired. Just imagine how envious everyone will be of your super fluid dance moves at the next dance party!

Reader
Brad Hull

It’s not just you. The combat system is a deal breaker for many.

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