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BETA TEST April 13th; what's new?


Stormhaven Studios
Our next stress tests are scheduled for:
Wed. April 13th @ 8pm central
(Thurs. April 14th @ 1am UTC)
The developers will meet in Discord and test for approximately one hour. However, the servers will remain open for roughly 4 hours. The most up-to-date client can be retrieved via the patcher found on your account page.

What's new?
This week we worked on some behind the scenes spawning tech for dungeons, added toggles for reagents, and finished up "the great crafting simplification". Due to the large amount of changes with the crafting revamp all characters have been wiped (this includes banks, etc). Thanks again to our community for spurring conversations which ultimately led to us uncovering some combat bugs that needed to be addressed. NPCs may be slightly more difficult this week again due to the increase in yellow resistances, NPCs now "know" they are in combat stance and can properly dodge/block/etc, and crocs can follow you into the water; feel free to blame @Kittik for these changes. Finally we see the return of yell, ooc, and global to the chat dropdown with a slight twist.

REMINDER: the servers will be open for 4hrs Wednesday evening. The servers will open again on Friday @ 12pm central and close on Sunday at 11:59pm central. See events in Discord for timezone translations.

Bug fixes / improvements:
  • Tech:
    • If you have your level boosted by a GM, it will now properly update
    • Ember monolith now has collision
    • Crocs can now swim and will follow you into the water.
    • Fixing a bug that was preventing NPCs from realizing they were in a combat stance. Their active combat stats were not being properly applied (including active combat stats like dodge etc).
    • When not in combat stance armor is only 80% effective against incoming attacks. This has always been the case, but was not working due to some recent refactors.
    • Adjustments to how difficulty indicators refresh when leveling. This may or may not still be an issue - let me know if there are discrepancies between overhead and UI chevron colors after gaining a level.
  • Art / Environment:
    • Removed trees from the bear cave in South Newhaven
    • Adding terrain sound controller to Dryfoot terrain. This should yield better footstep audio and dust puffs when walking on dirt.
    • Bug fixes to Dryfoot terrain and props.
    • Adjustments to ceiling light positions in dungeon. More fixes to come here.
    • Meadowlands nav mesh rebaked to include water.
  • UI:
    • Group bonus tooltip text now shows the correct percentage
    • yell, ooc, & global channels can now be selected in the channel dropdown of the chat box. However, after sending a message in one of those channels it will revert back to local/group depending on whichever you had selected last.
    • Increasing chevron size on UI & world-space nameplates.
    • Increasing level font size on UI nameplates.
  • Design:
    • Increasing resists of yellow mobs
    • Adjusted level ranges of spawns to reduce white cons being mixed with red cons
    • All creatures have been given innate +PEN
    • Weaken has been changed back to -PEN ;)
    • Weaken no longer enables auto-attack on use
    • NPC sensors have been adjusted to be more responsive to player presence.
    • Warlord chants/hymns/bellows now have a 5s cooldown
    • Energizing battle chant changed to provide direct STA over time instead of buffing the regen rate.
    • Crouch is more effective at reducing your chance to be detected by nearby NPCs
    • Pass made on clothing colors. Tiered clothing should be more coherent.
    • Pressure no longer shows as a reagent ability.
    • Abilities which are not attacks no longer check for ammo.
    • Names on crafted daggers no longer reference incorrect materials.
    • Added more rare spawns to North Newhaven.
    • Fixed an issue where social aggro from non-aggressive creatures would not work. Watch for stags assisting does.
    • Naming for most crafted items now only take on the name of the "primary" component of the recipe. For example: a Great Axe will be named by the material used in the blade. (Arrow naming update is still pending).
    • Adjusted which components crafted necklaces pull certain stats from.
    • Skinning added for crocodiles and basilisks.
    • Fear now has a 50% movement slow so they don't run away so quickly.
    • Fear duration decreased at lower levels.
    • Shared bank now starts with 0 free rows and is more expensive than your personal stash.
New stuff:
"The Great Crafting Simplification"
This week we bring you a simplification to our gathering and crafting system. Our experiment with "materials that span the entire level range" has ended as we are moving back to a more tiered approach. We found a few issues with the aforementioned system that required a bit of rethinking; mainly that there were too many materials with too narrow of a level range which made it difficult for different materials to be different from one another when used in a craft. The other issue was that leather was an odd man out as low level carcasses could not be used throughout the whole level range (this inconsistency with other professions always bothered us). Finally, players did not find crafting a 12% Quality item when they were well past the recommended material level particularly satisfying.

To that end, we have moved back to a tiered system of materials. But never fear! To maintain a good variety of choice, low level materials will also be found as high-level variants later in the game. This means that low-level copper spanning levels 1-10, may reappear as "fancy copper" at level 30, and "super fancy copper" at level 50 (this is merely an example). Here is the list of major changes for this week:
  • Plants no longer drop seeds. Plant oils are refined directly from plants
  • Logs no longer drop bark and sap. Sap is refined directly from logs, while bark has been removed.
  • Carcasses and refined carcass materials (meat, bone, leather) no longer reference their animal source.
  • Alloys have been removed for now - they may return later.
  • Different variations of materials have been added to provide distinct level ranges of materials. Instead of copper being used for the entirety of the game, there is a low level, mid level, and high level version of copper.
  • Level slider removed from the Crafting UI. Crafted item level is determined by the materials used.
  • Quality % represents the progress through the material's level range you have made
Reagent Toggles
This week we are adding checkboxes to the bottom right of reagent slots in your reagent pouch. By unchecking one of the boxes any reagent present in that slot will be ignored. This should make it a bit easier for you all to select when you want to use specific reagents without having to throw them into your bag. A couple of things to note:
  • these checkboxes are tied to the slot, not the reagent itself.
  • toggle state (on/off) of each checkbox is saved to your character between sessions
  • counts on abilities update when the toggle states change
  • reagent pouch reads left --> right, so if you have two reagents of the same type enabled in your reagent pouch the left one will be selected for use

Chat Channel Shortcuts
We have added a number of chat channel shortcuts that should make selecting the proper channel when typing a bit quicker. Just prepend any of these with the "/" character, followed by your message. i.e. "/z hi everyone!" will send "hi everyone" to the zone.
Chat ChannelShortcuts
saylocal, loca, loc, lo,
say, sa
groupgroup, grou, gro, gr,
party, part, par, pa, p
yellyell, yel, ye, y
zoneooc, oo, o,
zone, zon, zo, z
globalglobal, globa, glob, glo, gl

New Gloves Variants
We have added a large number of glove variants to the game, some of which may show up in your loot tables! Here is a visual preview:

Works in progress:
  • Zones: 4x additional overland zones have had an initial art pass completed
    • Redshore - accessed via Meadowlands & Dryfoot. Large tree forested region. Mid level range (approx 25-40). Nearing ready for population
    • Highlands - accessed via Meadowlands. Hilly region with sparse vegetation and water features. Mid level range (approx 30-40)
    • Gorge - accessed via Dryfoot. Large canyon-like area. Mid level range (approx 30-40)
    • Grizzled Peaks - accessed via Highlands, Redshore, and Gorge. Mountainous region with a number of tunnels. High level range (40-50). Has a one-way exit to Newhaven North.
  • Dungeons: 2 additional "large" dungeons have been laid out. Before implementation we are working on a general method for spawning these rooms so that they can be populated far quicker than we were able to do previously. This includes NPCs and gathering nodes. This spawning tech is next on the list to tackle.
  • NPCs: fully custom Bear, Elk, and Spider models are complete and integrated into the game. Spider is currently the only one implemented; elk & bear will come soon. Ashen creature varieties have also been integrated into the game but are not yet populating the world.
  • Design: implement high level abilities, loot table adjustments/population, advanced crafting recipes.
    • Considering giving a native "bonus" to each of the roles. For example, maybe a base defender gets +10% damage mitigation, and if you take the defender flavored specialization as a striker/supporter you get +5% damage mitigation. Still working through what the bonuses would be for Striker/Supporter/Controller.
  • Quests: a number of quests are in the queue for implementation/testing
  • Tech: npc improvements, npc merchants, smoothing out sit/stand animations.
  • UI: quest dialog redesign, tooltip redesign
  • New clothing & armor is still in the works.

NOTE: the following two line items are still in progress. This past week I worked on the new dungeon content tech, this upcoming week will be spent ironing out the workflow to put that tech to good use. These tasks are taking priority - once these are complete I will swing back around to Stat Consolidation & Reagent Upgrades.

Stat Consolidation (timeline: ...)
We are planning to drop the per-damage-types for HIT & PEN which would clear up a number redundant feeling stats. The rough plan is as follows:
  • DMG - split this up into 1H, 2H, Ranged, Ember, and Mental
  • HIT - universal - applies to all damage types
  • PEN - universal - applies to all damage types
The overall gist is switching from Slashing/Crushing/Piercing to 1H/2H/Ranged and stripping the subcategories for HIT & PEN. More details on this refactor when it gets closer to deployment.

Reagent Upgrade System(timeline: ...)
  • NPC's will drop a single type of Ember Essence (name is a WIP) that will "fill up" a permanently equipped Ember Stone. The amount of essence per creature will vary and it will be automatically split amongst group members similar to how coin currently is. Specific ember creatures such as ashen variants will likely drop more of this essence than others.
  • The ember stone is not something you traditionally "Equip" - it is a permanent fixture to your character that cannot be removed, traded, banked, etc. In order to obtain ember essence you must earn ember essence through adventuring.
  • Ember Stone's will have a maximum amount of essence they can hold. Later on down the line we may allow the player to unlock/earn an upgraded Ember Stone with a greater capacity via questing or something similar.
  • Ember essence can be spent at special crafting stations to upgrade your reagents. The current rough plan is to start with two variants: a) make the reagent do the same thing but more powerful, and b) have the reagent change in some way to provide a different "flavor" which will vary contextually depending on the ability. As time goes on we will add more variants.
  • We are also considering allowing players to spend their Ember Essence on the following (please note that all of these are CONSIDERATIONS and still up for discussion):
    • use ember rings and/or hollows as a summoning stone (which could be a summon from within the same zone, or maybe across zones depending on the # of people involved)
    • hearthstone like ability that would return you to the nearest ember ring/hollow (which would come with a long cooldown)
    • adding a temporary "aura" to ember rings that would provide longer-lasting temporary buffs for those near the ring
This design allows the player to collect ember essence naturally as they play. Capping the amount in which they can collect at any given time prevents hoarding and forces the player to make a decision on what to spend it on if they want to continue collecting. The considerations mentioned above would allow the players additional ways to spend their essence for the good of others which is something we are always striving to provide.

Unity Upgrade (unknown timeline)
Unity recently released 2021 LTS which I am in the midst of experimenting with. The bug holding us back is still present, but I am investigating other methods of working around it. Still not ETA on when this might happen - it all depends on how my experiments go this week.

What do we get out of upgrading to Unity 2020/2021? Here are a few ideal gains:
  • Engine bug fixes
  • Rendering bug fixes (black screen no more?)
  • New decal tech
  • New skybox tech
  • (2021 only) New dedicated server build target. This lowers the memory footprint of the server which should yield better server performance.
  • (2021 only) Potential for a native Apple Silicon build.
  • Improved code & rendering performance
  • Improved editor performance which would result in more productivity from the team
  • Better performance analysis tools

Known Issues:
  • World space nameplate chevron colors can mismatch UI space chevron colors after leveling up. We are actively working on this.
  • Not all ember rings and/or POIs are proper map discoveries. This is especially true in Dryfoot & Dryfoot Stronghold. Discoveries and map uncovering is a WIP and will be revisited soon.
  • Deconstructing crafted items returns junk 100% of the time.
  • No, we are not yet entertaining a compass. There are some plans to help you navigate in a more organic way, but those are waiting on a new skybox that will come with Unity 2020/201.
  • your screen may at times turn all black. to fix open the options menu, toggle reflections on OR off for a moment, and then toggle them back.
  • cannot roll on loot while unconscious
  • not all clothing/armor has visuals
  • Dragging a group-nameplate in the group window will set the wrong pivot point for the group window and the whole thing will drag a bit weird.
  • typing chat text may occasionally become invisible. unfocus your chat window and trying again a few times typically resolves this.
  • Sometimes when you respawn you don't end up at the proper Ember Ring --> if this happens please report the position where you died via the "/report" command or "/debugposition" (if using debugposition you'll need to paste the value here)

I need more details on the following issues/topics:
  • For those of you who have experienced the client eating a big chunk of memory: how large does the memory footprint get? How long had you been playing before it got that large (/played command will tell you)? Any idea at what rate it was climbing? If you load into a different scene via zoning does the footprint reduce back to normal?
  • For those who are getting the "Cannot interact while busy" message could you provide more detail on what you were doing just before this started happening? Does relogging resolve the issue?
  • For those of you who respawn at a location you suspect is incorrect: can you make sure to do a "/report" while standing exactly on your backpack? I need the precise location in order to debug these.
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With alloys being removed, does that mean there is no reason to have prospecting as a profession? And also if alloys are removed, how does one craft weapons? Unless your reference to removing alloys was just concerning the name?
With alloys being removed, does that mean there is no reason to have prospecting as a profession? And also if alloys are removed, how does one craft weapons? Unless your reference to removing alloys was just concerning the name?
weapons are made from metals. alloys were a combination of two separate metals which just added complexity and more materials to the whole thing - so everything is now just made of regular metals.
Fantastic as always cannot wait to get in there and start hammering on them ^^^ mobs and send them to hell minus their loot. Can we get a template to use once we create our toons to save having to try do them the same each time. Thanks in advance and whoever as i know you guys are always busier than pit ponies all the time.

Cheers for grinding on your k/boards for the community.

Hello. You guys/gals have been busy this week and then some for the this new build test. As always, great job everyone on the team at Stormhaven Studios. Lots of info to absorb, will have to check back later again between sessions to understand the changes lol. Can't wait to test out the new build and see how it plays in game.
Hot fix for the weekend:
  • killing reds while level 1, 2, or 3 will now properly reward xp
  • fixing chevron color discrepancies between UI and overhead nameplates after leveling
  • only print emote text into chat if the emoting player is within range
  • fixing a combat chat issue causing other's active defenses to show as if they were from you
  • when applying status or behavior effects to an NPC you will now properly be added as a target. This fixes an odd issue with feared mobs that were not behaving correctly when the fear broke and they ran away forever.
  • /thank now triggers the bow emote.
Was the rate at which you acquire plants increased to match what you got as plants and seeds prior to the removal of seeds from the drop table?