Shroud of the Avatar released Update of the Avatar #130 yesterday, and there’s quite a lot to cover as it’s a typically lengthy look at the crowdfunded sandbox’s weekly highlights.
First up is a look at a taming emote that coincidentally mimics Chris Pratt’s movements in the new Jurassic World film. Next up is a glance at the latest player-owned town template, which you’ll see live in next week’s Release 19 patch. As per usual there are plenty of screenshots in the weekly update, along with news tidbits like Steam key availability (now ready for all backers), community weekend events, and evening job openings.
Source: Update of the Avatar #130
Every MMO, whether sci-fi, fantasy, or equine, must at some point feature zombies. It’s video game law.
Fortunately for Shroud of the Avatar fans, it looks as though Portalarium is putting some thought into its undead creations. The shambling corpses will not only pose an immediate threat to survival but also surprise players with an infectious zombie plague that will require medical attention afterward. If a player waits too long, join the zombie ranks.
The most recent newsletter isn’t only about zombies, of course. Portalarium is hosting a summer sale during which the studio will give $10 in store credit to anyone who buys $10 or more in digital goods. The studio also showed screens of the new Solace Forest, discussed Release 18 in review, and teased new tools for player-created quests.
Having the ability to move things in a game world usually leads to player inventiveness. It’s how Shroud of the Avatar community member Bambino invented Gustball, a game in which players try to use Gust to shove a player character designated as “the ball” across a field and into a goal. It also does mean that someone has to be the unlucky soul not only picked last for a team, but picked to be the ball… hence why the developers have added an actual ball to use in the game for Release 19. Hooray for fictional in-game sports, then!
Of course, that’s not the only thing in the most recent community update for the game, which also shows off the upcoming Etceter Crag Mines through a series of screenshots. There’s also an invitation to a Release 18 postmortem discussion on June 11th and community guides to building your deck in the most recent update. Check out the full dispatch for all the community and game news you could want.
The next time you’re playing Shroud of the Avatar, you should take the time go visit Vengeance. It’s actually just the name of the second player-run town, but it sounds as if it should be a badass thing from an action film made in 1987, right? Of course, the update was release on May 28th, so you may have already noticed that Vengeance is the first open-PvP town in the game, which makes its name seem just that much more appropriate.
The update also features a variety of other additions, including the usual new Grand Tour quest with a new hat as a reward. Players who have already finished exploring should still take a look at the most recent development dispatch, as it contains news on other features like the new five-story basements available in the game’s add-on shop. Check out all of the community news and the full patch notes in the usual spot.
As Kickstarter projects successfully funded via the power of nostalgia have proven, gamer loyalty can burn strong even decades after experiencing titles that make such a profound impact. For a subset of players, the Ultima franchise will forever be one of the most influential RPG series in existence, which is why thousands of them have migrated over to Shroud of the Avatar to give it such an active following during its early access period.
Shroud of the Avatar isn’t merely a game being formed, but a community coming together to live in this virtual world. Massively Overpowered caught up with Portalarium executive producer Starr Long this week to get a status check on the project and to ask a few burning questions about how SOTA plans on being a worthy spiritual successor to Ultima.
In 1977, Richard Garriott designed his first computer RPG on a teletype at his high school in order to earn a computer of his own from his father. The game was called, simply enough, DND #1.
Garriott saved the printout code and challenged the Shroud of the Avatar fanbase a year ago to “reincarnate” it for the online game. Fast-forward to today, and DND #1 is finally playable in SotA on a teletype housing item that can be purchased from the in-game store.
The latest SotA newsletter mentions this addition, as well as the work that’s being done on a desert template for player cities. Shroud of the Avatar will be patching up to Release 18 on May 28th with a new tour challenge and a new hat (a bycocket, if you’re wondering).
So, Shroud of the Avatar got DDoSed yesterday. Shroud of the Avatar!? While there’s really no excuse for any DDoS attack, it kind of blew my mind that someone would attack SOTA given the general likeability of its devs and the positive vibes given off by the game’s community as a whole.
I guess bad apples are everywhere, but still, I was surprised that the crowdfunded fantasy sandbox would attrack that sort of attention. What about you, MOP readers? Has your game of choice been DDoSed, and if so, were you surprised that it happened?
Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!
If you’re having trouble accessing Shroud of the Avatar’s website or game, don’t worry — it’s not you. The devs posted a notice on Steam to inform the community that they’re currently weathering a DDoS attack and hope to be back up and running normally soon.
In the meantime, there’s a new Update of the Avatar to digest, complete with news about a charity tie-in, the breakdown of Release 17, and a link to the game’s soundtrack on SoundCloud. You can watch the devs hash out the Release 17 postmortem after the break!
This week in MMO crowdfunding news, Gloria Victis developer Black Eye Games let us know that it’s in “the home stretch” in terms of upgrading its fantasy sandbox to the Unity 5 engine. What’s the big deal with that? Well, a 50 percent framerate increase, for starters, not to mention improved eye candy.
Elsewhere, indie PvP sandbox Das Tal officially kicked off its Kickstarter campaign. The rest of this week’s crowdfunding roundup is just past the cut.
For this edition of Massively Overthinking, Kickstarter donor Sargon wants us think back to 1997, when Ultima Online launched and parted MMOs from graphical MUDs forever. Now think forward to 2015 again. UO’s still here! And Sargon wants to know why it’s not getting more play.
What would persuade you to return to Ultima Online? If you are a former player, what would it take for you to go back? If you never played before, could Broadsword do anything to inspire you to try it?
This question needn’t even be specific to UO. We all know that older games struggle with making inroads into modern markets. Let’s tackle the conundrum: I posed Sargon’s question to our own MMO die-hards.
I imagine that most of us have a future bucket list of MMOs that we wish would get here already. It wasn’t but a couple of years ago that I was salivating over several major up-and-coming releases, including Star Wars: The Old Republic, Guild Wars 2, and WildStar. My list of most-anticipated never seemed to get smaller, it seemed.
Flash-forward to 2015 and it feels as though we’re in a different era all of the sudden. Games are still being made, to be sure, but there seems like there are fewer blockbuster-wannabes on the horizon. I’m really happy playing what we already have, although I miss that feeling of “ooh, I can’t WAIT!” that used to drive my excitement.
Even so, there are several titles in development that have my attention to varying degrees. Maybe some of these aren’t the big-budget extravaganzas I was used to and maybe a couple are long shots, but as it stands, here are 10 future MMOs I can’t wait to play.
Last week wasn’t the biggest for Shroud of the Avatar, but the game’s most recent newsletter does have a couple of points of interest for the burgeoning community. Portalarium announced that it chose 24 fan-nominated names to become official street names in the game, something that the studio said it will do more of in the future.
Players will soon be able to use a web form to submit a request to form player-owned towns, a feature that’s only starting to blossom in the game. Other updates include a listing of Steam achievements, a preview of Bob’s Bell Tower (which will eventually allow players to pull ropes to make music), and a making-of video for the game’s largest 3-D hedge maze.
Shroud of the Avatar will be heading into Release 18 on May 28th. And that hedge maze video? You can check it out after the break.
This week in MMO crowdfunding news, we learned everything we ever wanted to know about Star Citizen’s first person shooter module, plus a bit more. In addition to some deep dives into character and art design, we got a good look at SATA Ball, which is simultaneously an in-fiction sport and an attempt at FPS mechanics that haven’t really been done before, according to Cloud Imperium.
You can catch up on the rest of this week’s crowdfunding news after the cut.