Update February 10th

This past week we’ve been conducting interviews to fill various positions which should lessen the need for most of our key people to need to handle multiple tasks, and this way they can focus more on their core competencies. Our goal is to see serious improvements in the workflow efficiency, also quality improvements, once this process is completed. These interviews are not just about pure development positions, but also address long-standing needs: one example has to do with improving the feedback loop between the community and the developers by creating a position for a designer tasked to work between the community feedback/support and the development team.

On the topic of improved efficiency, we’ve also started working on a massive internal documentation project that will help us improve and speed up our workflow, identify problems and address them.

Going into a bit more depth on previous discussed topics, we’ve already talked  about opposing magic schools. Today we have more information on this Darkfall 2.0 topic, as work continues on the character armor specialization features: As you know, in Darkfall 2.0 there are 4 intelligence based magic schools: Fire, Water, Air, and Earth of which a caster can pick 2.  A wisdom-based caster will also have to pick 2 out of Life, Pain, Law, and Chaos. Life blocks Pain, Law blocks out Chaos and vice versa. Also, of the 2 schools you pick, one is considered primary, the other is the secondary. A character choosing Fire as primary and Earth as secondary is much different than a character using Earth as primary and Fire as a secondary school. This leads to even more customization options.

We’re working on making each magic school have a focus area. A rough example to illustrate this point: Fire is more suitable for long range attacks against multiple targets while Air is more suited to close combat against smaller numbers. In development terms, the team has been working on adding spells and spell effects with these points in mind.

While we’re on the topic of spell casters, we should also mention that the art team is designing lines of robes and apparel, which aside from their aesthetic appeal, will also provide gameplay related choices.

In the previous update we also spoke about players having additional options when killed in combat, other than respawning at their bind stone. There have been changes to what happens when a character gets killed: In Darkfall 2.0 when someone goes down to zero hitpoints they are incapacitated, just like in the current version of the game. The difference is that the progress bar, counting down while you are on the ground, does not count down towards the characters death anymore, but towards his recovery. When the bar is empty, and provided the player has not pressed space to release his spirit back to the bind stone, the character will recover with minimal health. This makes ganking enemies in combat a critical tactic as it’s the only way to take them out of the fight, at least for a while. This mechanic also works while fighting monsters, making dying to AI a bit less forgiving. The higher level the monster is, the higher the chance of it killing you right-out, rather than incapacitating you.

With this in mind, we are working on adding a special new state, for characters after they are ganked. Once ganked, a character enters a limbo state where he is able to re-equip his character with items from his bank box, and reenter the battle at a random spot relatively close to his tomb stone. There isn’t  much time to do this and failing to hit the respawn key within the allotted time, the character respawns at his bind spot. Keeping an organized bank box is essential, and prepared players will have an easier time getting back into the fight. This mechanic is optional and costs a varying amount of gold depending on the value of the items you equip. The re-spawn location is  random to deal with tomb camping tactics.

Other than the points highlighted above, there is a lot of ongoing work scheduled for the current sprint,  as well as several business development issues which are keeping us busy, but also helping us move in the right direction.

Thank you for reading.

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