Early Access Road Map 2017

by | Forum Discussion

Introduction:

Darkfall: Rise of Agon went through many changes during our Closed Beta stage of development in 2016. There were a lot of things from our Early Development Road Map that we implemented last year with some new features and mechanics as well. You can see a summary of the changes that occurred throughout Closed Beta in our Overview video or can head over to our Patch Notes for the full list!

We are roughly four months away from the official launch of the game and have a set of internal goals we want to accomplish prior to launch. In the next few sections we will outline the changes we have planned for Early Access as well as some key areas we will focus on after launch.

Task System:

This new system will allow us to create tasks for any and all actions within the game so that we can provide short and long term goals for all character playstyles. There will be a new UI window for this system and the focus will be on the new player experience and initial guidance for our first roll out of it.

Tasks will be accomplished by completing anywhere from one to multiple actions that will be listed within each task. Rewards may vary from meditation points, gold, resources to even rare recipes and character titles.

Goals for Launch:

The foundation of this system along with the full new player guidance is a development project that we feel is essential for release and is what our development team is currently at work on.

The initial set and branch of tasks will be focused on teaching new players the basics of the game and easing their transition into the harsh world of Agon. The following is the outline of these tasks for your review:

  1. Initial Task Branch - players will be guided through this initial branch after character creation
    1. Interacting with User Interface
    2. Player Movement and World Interaction
    3. NPCs and Point of Interest
    4. Basic Combat and Hotkeys
  2. Open Ended Branch - players can decide their next branch to follow
    1. Crafting
    2. PvE
    3. Questing
    4. Exploration
    5. Player to Player interactions

Expanding Upon Single Alignment:

Our Early Access kick off patch brought with it our initial changes to the alignment system in Darkfall: Rise of Agon. We are excited about what this new system can bring into the game and how it will affect player interactions with one another. That said there are some changes we have planned to go along with our initial changes that we will go over in the following section.

Goals for Launch:

One of the first things that we will be doing is changing how the alignment system functions at key PvP hotspots and around player holdings. The following outlines the changes that are planned in these areas:

  1. Villages:
    1. The area in a 300 meter radius around all villages will go lawless 30 minutes prior to going live and 30 minutes after capture. This does not apply to villages that are already in lawless areas.
    2. There are a few areas where we will need to make manual adjustments due to potential issues with towers, but these will be addressed along with these initial changes.
  2. Player Holdings:
    1. Clans will be able to determine whether the tile where their city or hamlet resides in will have lawful or lawless rulesets applied to it.
      1. Only clans that meet certain criteria will be able to set their territory to lawful
        1. New variable will be tracked based off of the alignment of each character in a clan and all characters bound to any and all holdings of said clan
      2. Lawless Territories - follows the same ruleset as any and all other lawless areas in the game
      3. Lawful Territories - all characters within lawful territories follow the same ruleset as any and all other lawful areas in the game
      4. When a holding is under siege and the siege is active the surrounding area will become lawless for everyone

We also have changes planned for the way flagging works in Darkfall: Rise of Agon within lawful areas of the map. The following is an overview of the changes planned for certain types of engagements:

  1. Negative Player Flagging:
    1. Whenever a player performs any negative effect on another player, they will be flagged with aggression towards them. Consider this a form of “rogue” on a player to player basis.
  2. Positive Player Flagging:
    1. Whenever a player performs a positive effect on another player, the system will check for any aggression (negative player flagging) on their target. If their target has aggression towards another player, they too will become an aggressor to the same player(s).
      1. As an example, think of two targets at war with one another fighting in a lawful area. A blue player then decides to heal one side of the fight, becoming flagged grey toward the other war target, making it possible for them to retaliate without worry.
      2. Another more common example is a red in a dungeon trying to work back their alignment. If two blues come into the dungeon and one of them attacks the red, and the other one heals the blue, they are both flagged grey to the red.
  3. Assisted Kill Alignment Loss:
    1. Players that are rogue to a blue player when they die will lose alignment even if they were not the one who initiated the final blow.
  4. Rogue Timers:
    1. Debuffs will initiate a rogue timer for as long as the debuff is active.

Wilderness Portal Network:

One of our goals for Early Access is to implement our Wilderness Portal Network to provide a new way for players to traverse around the world of Agon. We will continue to focus on the ways that players can travel after launch with some examples listed in our last section.

Goals for Launch:

  1. Portal chambers will be removed from player holdings
  2. Wilderness portals will be placed throughout the map providing one-way travel to various locations
  3. Wilderness portals will not have a cost to use

Crafting Enhancements:

We have put in the initial changes to Weaponsmithing, Bowery and the new Staff crafting skill along with our new Mixing profession and enhancements to Alchemy. The following outlines our plans for the remaining professions along with our first steps into specialized crafters.

Goals for Launch:

  1. Shipcrafting:
    1. The cost and arrangement of boats will be altered and new Shipcrafting and Shipcrafting Mastery skills added
  2. Engineering:
    1. The cost and arrangement of battlespikes, cannon, warhulks and related siege equipment will be altered and new Engineering and Engineering Mastery skills added
  3. Cooking:
    1. Cooking recipes and their effects will be redone, along with new recipes added, to provide more variety and diversity within both the Cooking and new Cooking Mastery skills
  4. Taming:
    1. Crafting costs will be reevaluated and changed to better represent their current functionality.
  5. Shields:
    1. Crafting costs and arrangements of shields will be altered and new Shieldcrafting and Shieldcrafting Mastery skills added
  6. Armorsmithing:
    1. The cost and arrangement of armor will be changed
    2. New armor sets will be added at Armorsmithing Mastery level 25 and 50
  7. Tailoring:
    1. The cost and arrangement of armor, clothing and bags for Tailoring and Tailoring Mastery will be altered
    2. New recipes will be added to add diversity in skills
  8. Construction:
    1. Construction skill will be altered and rearranged
    2. A new Construction Mastery skill will be added that allows players to craft housing add ons and deployable vendors
  1. Crafting Specializations:
    1. Each of the crafting professions that have a mastery skill will have a new Artisan Skill
    2. Players will be able to specialize and acquire two Artisan Skills which will allow them to craft better quality weapons, armor and items
    3. Players will be able to switch specializations but at a cost

Deployable Player Vendors:

With the initial changes coming to crafting professions and specializations, it is important to be able to enhance the ability and incentives for people to trade their wares. A player driven economy is of the utmost importance to us and in order to accomplish that players must be able to buy and sell wares more easily. The first mechanic that we plan to implement to help increase trade is our Deployable Player Vendor system.

Goals for Launch:

  1. Players will be able to craft a deployable player vendor in Construction
  2. Players will be able to place one player vendor
  3. There will be limitations to where players can place vendors

Economy Changes and New Persistence System:

As we have mentioned before, we are currently testing our new persistence system on both live and our test server. We feel confident that this will be ready for release and it will allow us to track everything and anything that occurs live from external tools. This will also allow us to add in, remove or change any system that is involved with the persistence of the game.

The economy is another area of focus for us for before launch. Our changes to the economy will be aimed to create a proper balance of risk vs reward in the game and resource allocation.

Goals for Launch:

  1. Implement new persistence system
  2. Implement external tools to monitor the economy
  3. Evaluate and adjust outputs and sinks of gold and resources, along with where certain resources can be found in game

Nithron Coin Shop:

The Nithron Coin Shop is our new upcoming online store set to launch sometime before launch. Our initial iteration of this will allow you to purchase subscription and Nithron Coin packages along with certain services.

Goals for Launch:

  1. Implement first iteration of Nithron Coin Shop and available packages
  2. Provide race and sex changes
  3. Provide name changes with alias finder

A Look Ahead:

Launch will not be the end of development for Darkfall: Rise of Agon. We will be shifting to monthly patches where we can focus on key areas at a time to be able to accomplish larger system implementations and overhauls. The following are new systems and changes that we have currently planned for after launch.

  • Clan Warfare

    • Revamp siege system
    • Expand on territory control
    • Develop new alliance and clan mechanics
  • Alignment

    • Implement incentives for all levels of alignment
    • Create Bounty Hunting system
    • Develop Reputation system
  • Crafting

    • Develop more in depth Taming profession
    • Implement Farming profession and new mechanics
    • Add new weapons, armor and items
    • Further expand on crafting specializations
  • Economy

    • Expand on deployable player vendors
    • Create new naval routes and expand on trade routes
    • Implement dynamic controls on economy
  • Player Housing

    • Create new add-ons for houses
    • Implement more player house locations
    • Develop new method for obtaining and capturing houses
  • Task System

    • Create new tasks for various playstyles
    • Implement rare rewards like crafting recipes
    • Add in player titles
  • Travel Enhancements

    • Expand road network and increase travel on roads
    • Create sea currents and increase travel on currents
    • Add in new methods and vessels of travel
  • User Interface

    • Develop custom user interface API

Thank you for reading and make sure to join us in the discussion!

Sincerely,

- The Team at Big Picture Games