Update March 30

Hi everyone, it’s good to be back on these updates, even if it’s just for this week, next week we leave for Korea to sign an agreement with our Korean partners. We’ll let you know about the details after it’s done, it’s very exciting news for the future of Darkfall. We’re back on Sunday April 8th, but next week’s update should contain some deals of our trip.

Our new Project Manager, Jonathan, just completed his second week with us. I think he’s doing a great job getting a handle on the current situation and fixing/optimizing some of our processes already. I think he’ll be very valuable for our final push to launch the game- and beyond that. I’ve taken something out of a brief weekly report he’s established which gives an optimistic message on progress: “Really happy with the proactivity levels of the team this week.  Not sure who else has noticed but it took a giant leap forward compared to last week.  There seems to be more communication and more co-operation with some people visibly “thinking outside the box” – this is great to witness and I hope it’s just the start.” Of course I cheated and picked the best part, there are always issues and disasters of varying size, but we’re all pulling together and facing them the best way we can.  I hope that in a couple of weeks we can have a proper introduction,  and possibly some community interaction with Jonathan.

Let’s look at some of the progress this week, including a couple of features of Darkfall 2.0 we haven’t talked about before:

A larger part of the team is involved in the user interface implementation and we’re at the point where the visual aspects of it are about to be implemented. We’re anxious to see it working, and we’re getting close.  In combat mode the interface is minimal, providing a clear view of what’s happening in the battlefield, while the GUI mode is as informative as the player wants it to be through various customization options. As you know, the GUI has been a thorn on our side for a long time now, and we had to pretty much throw it away and make it from scratch taking into account all the lessons learned and the feedback we’ve had on it over the past 3 years. If we have to say how we feel about the 2.0 GUI, I’d say we’re excited about the serious improvements it brings to gameplay and the look and feel of the game- we hope you will be too.

We’re also currently implementing a point system into Darkfall 2.o, a new feature which we’ve been mulling over and designing for a while now. Points are a way for players and clans to better monitor their progress, their degree of success, but they also enhance gameplay by providing more options.

The first type of points you run across are player points. Most actions in the game, PvP or PvE related, harvesting or crafting, etc.  grant, what we internally and imaginatively call, player points. The specifics are not available at this time, but players use these points to perform various actions in game. Essentially, playing the game provides a tangible reward that can be used to open up new possibilities and exciting new paths in a character’s career.

We’re also working on a player achievement system to give a better sense of purpose to new players as they are discovering opportunities the game had to offer. For veterans the achievement system provides an added incentive because it’s connected to the point system.

The point system isn’t just for players, clans can also gain points. Players in a clan will gain points both for themselves and for their clan while participating in certain activities. Successful clans get points and use them to grow and become more powerful. There are also clan achievements that  provide an even greater incentive to complete certain goals. Clan achievements also feed into the clan points system.

The whole achievement and point system work as a driving force behind player choice. You still have the freedom to do what you want, whenever you want, there is no hand-holding and there are no forced choices. What it adds to the experience is an incentive and rewards as well as a sense of accomplishment by being active in the game in the ways you enjoy. For us this is considered a major feature of Darkfall 2.0 and we’ll present it in much greater detail as soon as we’re satisfied from our first tests.

Another focal feature that we’ve been working on this past week, is the village control system. While there is not much we can announce as details are being constantly modified, I’ll say that villages in Darkfall 2.0 are a territory control feature. They are connected with clan holdings and they provide rare and expensive resources to those who control them.

I’m not sure if it comes across properly – needing to be vague about it – but these are a couple of very important and very cool features which are going to add new dimensions of gameplay in Darkfall 2.0 compared to the current version.

Speaking of resources, we noticed concerns on the forum about the new crafting system. Some of you are worried that basing the crafting system on rare resources, and specifically ore, will benefit clans that own cities and the like. To this we reply that clan cities are no longer the exclusive, or almost exclusive source, of rare resources . Sea Fortresses, Player Villages and Resource Monoliths, all outside the relative safety of player holdings, will provide the bulk of materials for crafters to create the best of equipment with. In turn, these items will feed back into PvP, in a constant struggle for controlling areas and resources.

Thank you for reading.

34 Responses to Update March 30

  1. Angel Rivera says:

    Best typed out update yet tasos. Thank you.

  2. Nice update

    Give beta pls :)

  3. Kyle Hunter says:

    I just think it’s silly to have selentine cloth, for example. It doesn’t really make sense to me. Is it cloth studded with selentine? How do you integrate selentine ore into cloth.

  4. Lee Joyner says:

    Better updates lately, keep them coming.

  5. Great news. Seems like you guys have a good momentum going! Keep up the great work!

  6. Village control system sounds really promising.

    Not sure what to think of the points system though.

  7. Lee Joyner says:

    I hope there will be love for solo players. I KNOW, I KNOW, it’s a clan based game, but some of us like living in the hills and forests, attacking stray reds and protecting blues, hitting abandoned hamlets, and living the solo life.

  8. Lol.. Beta.. DF 2 is still in pre alpha.

    • Helmut Siedl says:

      tech demo for korean investors…..

      but over all it sounds like tasos have a plan something like

      “let the koreans pay and with the leftover money after building their customized darkfall-korea version we will be able finish tasos dream of how darkfall2 should be for eu&na”

      im absolutly sure i that korean f2p item shop asian grinder darkfall mutant version is crap i never wana play

      but if it allows aventurine to have enought funds to develop a darkfall2 in eu im happy

  9. Bear says:

    Shadowbane mines in DarkFall I got half my bday wish. Good update

  10. Derek Basey says:

    I don’t think I like the sound of points so far. As long as they dont become some bs currency to buy rewards with, things should be cool.

  11. @Lee Joyner No, you’re absolutely right. If they don’t cater to every type of player, Darkfall will have a hole in it’s gameplay. Everything has to come together like the ecosystem of earth does, if you don’t have plankton, how can you feed the world? You need solo players just like you need crafters and griefers. You need people that you love, just as you need people that you hate, it all makes Darkfall.

  12. I think a big part of the upset over rare ore as being the heart of crafting is that it is not dynamic/interesting enough. Why should certain wood types not be important and part of the game? Making it all revolve around ores makes the system very linear.

    • Jeremie Bair says:

      There’s no need to over complicate a system. Such as all the different types of regs in UO, or in Vanilla WoW all the useless skill tree options that could gimp a newbie who didn’t know what was best.

      There is already how many different types of enchant mats? And in the current game your basic gearset absolutely requires FIVE enchants. Thats enough as it is. Involving farming for rare wood for your bow, rare ore for your armor and rare thread for your robes would just be too segmented.

      Things like rare ore golems for PvP hotspots as they are now are a good example of this.

  13. Looks good. I can’t wait, but I guess I will.

  14. “player points” sound exactly like “experience points”, which on the surface, sounds like a bad idea.

    i dislike the simplicity/linearity of making rare ores but not rare anything else.

  15. Ladesma Bell says:

    Wow, was almost going to say SSDD … but… its all sounding good …..

  16. Lynna Waters says:

    Speaking of gaps, I’d like to have a ROLE-PLAY content update soon.. I think it would be nice to see extra and definately more content and story line in 2.0 than there was in Darkfall. I got a book full of good rp ideas AV, if you need some inspiration just contact me ;)

  17. Sounds great but when is DF 2.0 targetted to be released?

  18. Jason Volk says:

    Great job! Keep up the good work.

  19. I like the fact that cities loose some weight in the constant search for resources because at least its one less reason for a powerful faction to control a crap load lot of cities.

    I hope that in the end it makes it possible for people outside the major clans to get some action and resources on these new hotspots.

    All in all its a good update, but with so many decisions on top of the table still, it looks like DF2.0 won’t launch anytime soon. Q3 2012 maybe?

  20. Suggestion : “player points” gained from PVE, crafting and conquest could be called: Glory.

    I like that such points cannot be sold/transferred (I presume).

    Also : remember that players tend to exploit any loophole. So if PVE gives ‘Glory’ points per damage on mobs, for example, some will heal/buff the mobs. It’s just an example.

    As rule of thumb, such points could be relative to the costs of materials used to craft a given item and relative to the HP of a mob and the amount damage it can do.

  21. Not to thrilled about achievements. Most of the time they belong in games that lack freedom and creativity so much that it’s impossible to come up with a sense of accomplishment on your own. Being told you’re special for a bunch of minor crap is silly, maybe it would be ok for things that are truly difficult to pull off.

    I was kind of hoping mining would get some real attention, remove rare ore mines from cities, place some actual mines in the game in those places people don’t usually bother visiting, let them dry up and give them a spawn rotation so people are actively searching for the next place to mine. Always thought it should be more than some shiny rock on the ground. Instead you’re just going to have rare ore handed out some more in attempt to make villages relevant.

    Speaking of villages, you keep adding incentives for players to capture them, but maybe the problem is the village system itself could be better, like getting rid of the static location system and letting people actually build custom cities. Village built around a popular mine perhaps?

    But I suppose you’re way past the suggestion phase.. Just try to remember, a true sandbox has more to it than just good pvp combat.

  22. Update promising, especially that part about the new Project Manager Jonathan. Some new blood might be what needs to be infused, if the project should go well. Hopefully he is aquainted as well as committed to the original DFO ideals the game was to fulfil, as well as compentent in understanding what drives a MMORPG world as well as that Sand Box is not about Toys, but Tools. But, promising message giving hope for a bright future for Darkfall.

    GUI update – rehash of old statements, but good as it reaffirms our hopes for a good GUI. (A GUI should help you control your character, not block actions or slow down your system.)

    Point System can be interesting if done well, used as a “NPC Social currency” to gain “NPC Social Status rewards” which can be anything from access to House leases, Prestige Classes or Titles, or even (balanced) Alignment “purchases”. Shouldn’t be too “expensive” to get something though, as then this system will be a Block and not a Sandbox Tool. Achievements is also nice, as it gives “player prestige goals” to get, if they are essentially voluntary.

    Village Control System as a Resource Territory Control system is a great upgrade, but would actually just prefer that you just made them into Holdings. After all, the definition of a Hamlet is a “Small Village”, so a “Large Hamlet” should be a Holding as well as the regular Hamlets are. The Resource boosts can remain as the benefit of having a lesser Holding though. Cities grant Crafting and Market Vendor benefits while providing good defences, Hamlets & Villages Resource benefits.

    And, as for AV’s percieption of Our Concerns about the Rare Metal Infusion Crafting system, the concerns about it is NOT ONLY about Rare Ore supply. It is about:

    - Sillyness of Infusing Cloth, Leather and Wood with METAL ORE! Sillyness = counter to Immersion. All Silly functions/exploits should be removed as a policy, for serious Sandbox projects.

    - Threat to Balance, when putting “all eggs in one bowl” by having a unified Quality Rank Resource in a linear progression. Great risks to imbalance as a balance in one area won’t necessarily mean balance in another area, as well as that the linear progression of Rare Ores will create an imbalance of Ore Value where increased Rare Rank will be far over-valued in regards to quality differences.

    - Reduction of Trade Benefits by Regionalization of Ore access (one of the most easily regionalized resources). If Regionalized, some areas will have worse gear available than other areas, similar to the Cityholder debate.

    - Far better Sandbox system and lore immersion ideas are easily done (may be done just by changing recipe structure), where heterogenous differences and quality based on Quantity of Ore and not on Type of Ore for Metal items and by diversified Resources (alike the Ingredient Quality system of the Enchantment Crafting we have now) is not only far superior to the current system, but the current system is far better than the one you suggest in terms of balance and immersion.

    Or, in essence: Having ability to colour your weapons is nice, but I can’t use it as I want better weapons than the colour I want (immersionbreaking), and those are so expensive that I need to find some Gold source to exploit to be able to afford it or just become Self-sufficient as a Crafter to handle them. Not much thought needed to do it, just some Grind ahead, and I’ll be able to PvP well afterwards.

    • And to extrapolate a bit with some more details about the risks of “putting everything in one basket with Linear Quality progression by Type”:

      Homogenizing recipes by simlifying them in the manner of reducing the number of ingredients available, will reduce Trade incitaments gained by Production ability differentiation.

      That is, if everyone Trades in Rare Ore, few want to trade in Snakeweed, Mounts, or anything else. Hence, the Rare Ore producers will gain greatly in power and hog the economy. Not only will those producing the best Ores have equipment infused by it, but they will also be able to trade Ore for over-inflated prices with other Resources that are under-priced due to low demand (despite being efficient in their narrower field of use), making the Rich become Richer and well equipped even with equipment not of their Rare Ore type.

      Which also mean that if Resource gain is ruled by PvP OR Regional Distribution, this is BAD.

  23. darkfall will be fun to play in 2014!!! keep the updates coming tacos!!!

  24. Danny Dryden says:

    Back on track maybe? Lets get this beta going =]

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