This weekend many DragonFable adventurers were hunting for the two new staffs. Players organized on the forums and split up into groups to hunt the various dungeons and report their findings. Cysero was repeatedly asked the location of the secret items -- naturally he did not say (It was a secret!) So, he snuck notes onto some of the searching players characters in game saying something to the extent of "Haha, you will never find them!" I was thinking to myself... wow, what amazing interaction between the game, players and developers. What else can we do that would be this much fun?
The Skull Staff of Dooooooom!
It was a tie! Congratulations to both Roibup and Cyanda for obtaining this extremely powerful and pricey staff! To celebrate, two new good mage staves have been added to the game in their honor! Roibups Razzor staff and Cyanda's Glowing staff can now be found.... but no one knows where! As per our evil tradition even the Roibup and Cyanda have to search dungeons to find their own weapons... Battle on!
BlueDragon Server is Online
The RedDragon Server which was currently hosting DragonFable crashed last night -- it is showing memory parity errors. We will have the ISP repair it and bring it back online today. We had BlueDragon sitting in reserve (Nice thinking Zhoom!) so if you refresh the homepage it will get you back into the game.
New Online Record!
907... 920... 951...996... 997... 1003... 1101...1205... 1304... 1379... characters are logged in as of this post! WOOOHOOOOO!
Stealth Upgrade to Beta Phase: R2-D2!
If you return to the homepage and re-login, you should get the new version of the game engine solving any caching problems with the Mage Class. This stealth upgrade was done for Darkhunter Jake, Lord of Darkness1234, SirBozo and all of the players their words were representing on the message forums -- thanks guys! (It is actually Phase 2D-R2... but seriously... this is so much funnier)
21 new Staffs added to the loot tables
All of the mage/staff bugs have been corrected and 21 new staffs have been added to the game. We are going to keep adjusting things as we get feedback from you and do a full build upgrade next week. Also, resistances have just been added to the elementals.
Staffs being added (and Fixed)!
If you buy one of the new staffs being added to the shops it may not let you cast spells. You can fix this by reloading your character -- we are changing the database to solve the issue permanently. Also, we just uploaded a fix for the hair shop -- in the new version, mages no longer wig out in the barber shop.
Update: Mage Class Release!
Mages have been appearing all across the land. New staffs will be appearing in the shop and in dungeons soon. (Also, we are aware of the Barber issue about the character berserking if you try to cancel.... which is hallarious for the record) As of the time of this posting, there are 528 characters logged into DragonFable.
Do you believe in... Magic?
Ack, I just got the song stuck in my head. Shortly we will be releasing the Mage class. After it is released, be sure to clear your Temporary Internet Files (Cache) if you are having any problems creating a mage. We will be adding new staffs to the shops and dungeons all day. Enjoy finding them all! Also, I would like to ask for your help. Cysero, Zhoom and I will be carefully reading the forum for your Mage Class ideas, comments and suggestions. I think we are going in the right direction -- but we really need your help to make this class as fun as it can possibly be. See you on the forums!
Mage Class Skills
Much like the warrior, the mage gains new skills after leveling. All three base classes have simliar abilities, just different ways of accomplishing them (Which makes sense since the game should be balanced for everyone). Starting with this next release we will introduce Staffs and Daggers to the loot table. These weapons will do roughly half the melee damage of Swords and Axes that are the same level. ONLY HALF!!!!!????? Whaaaaaaaaa? Are these guys out of their.... wait, what is the catch? *Smiles* The catch is that Mages do double damage! You can channel your mystical energy through your Staff, Dagger, or Wand to do 200% or greater damage to your opponent (Base, before critting). If a Mage ever gets ahold of an extremely high damage staff to channel spells through... oh.... the carnage.... the carnage. Due to popular damand the Mages can equip and use ANY type of weapon. However, you will not be able to cast your primary offensive spells if you are using big weapons like an Axe or a Sword. (There will be classes released in the future like BladeMage, ShadowKnight, etc that can). So, if you have a staff equiped in your Mage's hand and press the attack key... you will hurl a ball of magical enemy for 200% of the weapons damage at your opponent. If you are out of mana, or are using a big weapon, you will run up to the oponent and hit him like normal. My apologies for such a long winded post.... but this is getting really interesting. The reason daggers are only half damage too (other than the fact that many mages like stabby things) is so that Rogues can (am I going to commit to this?) *coughs* DUAL WIELD *coughs*.
Current Mage Skills (May change a bit)
1.) Shield - Creates a protective magical Barrier around the mage
2.) PowerUp - Increases the Damage of your Magical Attacks for 5 rounds
3.) Meditate - Restores 10 Mana
4.) Fire Ball - BOOOOOOOM!
5.) Sleep - Makes monsters sleepy Zzzzzzz
6.) IceStrike - Casts an iceball based on your weapons damage x2
7.) Blind - Reduces Monsters chance to hit you for 5 rounds
8.) Wind - Casts an Tornado based on your weapons damage x2
9.) Lightning - Casts an Energy Blast based on your weapons damage x2
10.) WildCasting - Extremely Dangerous and Risky Catastrophic Casting
11.) MageFury - Attack all monsters with a single Cast
DragonFable *Gulp* Dealine Approaches
This is where the real "work" starts. Every time I get to this point in a project my stomach get nervous butterflies, my nerves get a little stretched thin... it was the same in AdventureQuest, ArchKnight and UndeadAssault.... this part is just like sitting down the night before the term paper is due to start writing it. You have already done all the research, created your outline, physically gotten the pen and paper and word processor up -- and even took 15 minutes to stall and bring in an extra snack.... Now, we are ready. All that is left is to let loose that last big breath and start cranking it the actual work out! (Anyone have papers due this week?)
For your "OH DEAR GOSH, how are they ever going to finish this?" enjoyment... (Yay! These are the best) the behind the scenes horror stories: While the mage class is the closest to being complete, the female is having some very strange coloring bugs, some of the skills are a little wierd, I swear to gosh that I saw her cast at least one spell out of her big toe this morning. When she powers up it looks like she is going to faint. The rogue female is working, but the skills seem way too much like the warriors... and right now when the rogue stealths he/she is yelling "Nananana you cannot see meeeeee!!!!". My personal favorite was when my new Rogue used its dodge skill and said "Just try to hit me!" and the Water Elemental slammed its watery fist into my face... critical hitting... and killing me. The new town is being stiched together but has hundreds of little bugs hidden in the graphic-clips that make it up that we are trying to fix. The DragonAmulet is back from Cysero, Arklen, and Oishii but we have no idea how we are going to fit it (Jam, squish, cram) into your character sheet. On the brighter side, we all really like the book idea for the character pages that was being discussed on the forums. The current plan is to finish and release the Mage and Rogue class, then release the first new area by this Friday. Cross your fingers for us! (and ask friends to cross their fingers too). The official message board emote for finger crossing is X__ (if you are right handed) and __X if you are left. Or um, _X_ if you are really talented. \\ // if you are Vulcan (Or from Ork!)
More Weapons of Doooooooooooom!
We have amassed what can only be refered to as a GINORMOUS amount of art for DragonFable. The six weapons below are brand new (as of yesterday) and have been added to the endless pile of things you should expect to see following the big live launch. The big news for today is that all three base classes are animated and color customizable -- we are starting to add skills to them now. We are going to release them with some "OK" skills to start then go back and rebalance them once we get your feedback (We can build them together). I would really like to allow every class to use every type of item... but give advantages for using specific types. For example, a rogue should be able to do special attacks with daggers and short swords. Mages should be able to cast most powerful spells if they are using a staff or wand to channel their magical energy. Oh, before I forget -- we have the code for the character pages working, but we have not come up with anything better than the "Toss it on the ol' AQ scroll" for the page. Have any ideas?
Arklen is not skipping Class, but he is making Classes for DF!
The rumors are true. Arklen, the legendary AQ animator, gave up his Spring Break.... the beaches... the sun... the *blinks* girls... and instead he came to our secret AE underground headquarters to bravely fight along side the DragonFable team in our evil crunch-time of doom! Arklen... on behalf of the players, the team, and all of the folks out there who have not heard of us yet but are doomed to join us as DragonFable addicts.... we salute you! *SALUTE* As I write this, Arklen and Cysero (who was crying all weekend -- something about a pun on the forums?) are finishing the new male and female Mage classes. Considering that they are wearing robes (which is really hard to animate in our style), the running animation is looking awesome! Yesterday they finished the Rogues and tomorrow they will be designing the Dragon Amulet and starting on the world layout. Meanwhile, Zhoom and I are rushing to get the game engine and website issues fixed (Not to mention running through Pae's HUGE list of bugs from the forum). Today I uploaded new versions of the pages to fix all of the issues with the new IE patch -- if you find any problems, please let me know! We are adding an online user count as early as tonight, and soon character pages will be going up (so you can finally show off all of your stuff!) We may be able to release the first three starting classes this Friday (I said may! may! may!). We are sitting on the artwork for a good number of future classes too (yup, you will be able to multi-class like in AQ).... this game really feels like it is starting to move.
Breaking through Boards
Punching and Kicking through increasing amounts of wood is typically associated with the Martial Arts. The reason they do this is to help change the way the mind thinks... not to just smash your body parts into solid things. The truth is, boards are not really that hard to break -- the secret is not to just punch the board (Which normally ends up with a sore or bruised hand) The real secret is to aim for an invisible target far beyond the other side of the wood.... then punch all the way THROUGH!! (Pssst, Artix... what does this have to do with making a game?) Well, just like punching through a board we have to make goals that are GREATER than what we think our limits are and then work hard to drive way through them. Only by shooting for the stars and believing in ourselves will we see what we are really capable of. I think that many people think to themselves "I will fail" or "There is no way I will be able to do that" or "Trying is just pointless" -- and unfortunately they talk their mind into helping them fail before they even start. Sometimes, it is worse because they start telling other people that they are unable to do things to. But I believe that anyone can accomplish big things... no matter what they have done in the past. Aim for huge goals (like having more people on than RS *coughs*) and once you have found that target line up for a well aimed strike all the way through those boards.... it does not matter if it takes months, years, or the rest of our lives, we are capable of anything. We will only see what we are truly capable of if we set big goals and give it everything we have. Battle on!
Game Version 2D Live!
We released a new build of the game today (I love naming build versions). Rolith keeps sending me tells that I need to archive the design notes.... apparently this page is actually larger in KB than the game engine. Talking about which -- we reduced the filesize of character models by 25% when we added all the new stuff to them... which... is.... wierd.... normally when you add a bunch of stuff it gets bigger. Go Flash, go! The barber shop is live!
New Features in Beta 2D:
- Barber Shop: Change your Character's Hair Style, Hair Color, Skin Color
- Armor Customization: Create a new character and customize their armor color too!
Please let us know of any bugs you find, we will be eager to hear what you have to say!
Barbershop to be released on Friday
This weekend in AdvetureQuest, Galanoth is releasing a new seasonal event -- anything that combines egg hunting and monster slaying sounds fun to me! In DragonFable, we will be releasing the barbershop, new hair styles and you will also be able to create new characters with custom armor colors (Very simliar to the guardian armor in AQ). Later, we will add a armor customizer NPC who can change your existing armor's color. Also, I changed the "PLAY" button on the homepage to directly link to the game server and moved the button up on the page so it is easier to get to. Wish us luck finishing this up today!
Bad Hair Day
Sometimes things go wrong... horribly, horribly, horribly, horribly wrong. And we took a picture for you!
"Oh well...nothing to wig out about, the barbershop and new style will be hair when they are ready.... " - Amdusias Furfur, from the Forums
20 new hair style have been completed
Well, 18 really... two of them are "bald". That means there are 9 real starting hairstyles per gender. The male and female warrior armor has successfully been made "color customizable" by Cysero. Zhoom is finishing the changes to the barbershop. We are planning to release a series of hats, helmets, hoods, beards, and "wierd-head-thingies" which you can obtain through specialty hat stores (and traveling barbers) in the future. They key is giving you enough options to make a character you really like. Cysero said that this will be a huge step forward for the Beta as we have all looked simliar for so long.... we are all about to become unique.
Microsoft's new patch -- not hurting us, but some sites are getting hit hard.
The buzz on the Forums has been about an optional new patch released by Microsoft that requires you to click on A Flash movie (or any Active X control) to activate it. The patch may be optional now.. but all future MS Browsers will be using this new system. For AdventureQuest, it only means you need to click one extra time to play the game. However, the really cool layout of the DragonFable site uses multiple flash movies on each page... which makes site nearly unusable for anyone who is currently using the patch. We are currently entrenched in getting the new content for the game ready, but in my spare time I will get the navigation fixed so that if you have the patch you will not be bothered by it any more. You can read a little bit about what this patch does on Microsoft's site. While I understand the security concerns (revolving around non-flash ActiveX controls) that have caused this, it is a shame that Flash and so much of the creative ability of the internet is going to be affected by this change.
Update: I am sorry, I was mistaken (Should have read the boards closer). It appears the reason for this change to IE is due to a lawsuit against Microsoft by a company who has a Patent for embedding content in a web browser. *Shudders*
Update #2: Rivet, Rolith and I used a work-around to fix the left hand navigation of the DragonFable site temporarily. (Yay!) That should make the site easier to navigate if you have the IE update.
Rogues, Mages and Bears... oh my!
Cysero has started animating the Rogue class and Oishii drew a 3rd and final new version of the Mage class which just started being vectorized (I cannot believe she did not kill me... but the new mage looks sooooooooo gooooood! FIREBALL!). The server is back up after successful database changes and Zhoom is now wrapping up the code for the Barbershop which is coming next.
Barbershop coming next!
Would you trust your character's hair to a bald gentleman with oversized scissors and an even larger handlebar mustache? A gentleman who sometimes is known to make *coughs* mistakes in his never-ending quest to create the perfect hair cut? If so -- you will like our next release which will allow you to change your characters Hair style, Hair color, and Skin color!
Note: Servers will be offline for a short while while we make database changes.
This is a tale of nitty gritty details. The male Face was altered when the Female Warrior was released. At a quick glance they are the same... but after some study the difference in lips and jaw shape becomes easily noticeable. The mouth on the left was the original one an it had lots of benefits: Could smile, frown, gasp, shout, and more.... the one on the right has benefits also: It looks a lot better and you can put a beard on it because it does not move. The extra shading that you see on the right mouth makes it very difficult to animate (because of the color customization, see yesterdays notes). Also, when looked at from the side, the shape of a person's mouth changes when they open their mouth. So, we are eager to hear your thoughts... what is more important to you -- a moving mouth that can help convey facial expressions or Better looking head with Beards?
Female Warrior and Account Activation
A lot of Adventurers from the message board have commented that the changes are not showing for them, even after clearing their cache. We suspect that in some of these cases that the user's ISP is using a bandwidth saving tool which is essentially caching the .swf files somewhere between us and them. If this is the case, the issue should resolve itself in a few hours. For those of you who wish to activate your account but have lost, or do not know what your currently registered email is, we are releasing the account Manager early.... Warning: this is what stuff looks like before we make it pretty!
1.) Activate your account using: DragonFable Account Manager
2.) Clear your Temporary Internet Files
3.) Close all your browser windows and then try.
Girls invade DragonFable!
I got a little off course this week (meetings... horrible, horrible, horrible meetings! Day long, nerve wracking, sleep losing, would rather eat my own toes [even the big ones] without Katsup meeeeeeeetings [yes, of Doom] !) But Zhoom and Cysero were still hard at work so we should be able to release the female Warrior tonight. Next Monday we will need to take the game server down to change the database and game files to support customization and the Manage Account area. Featured to the right are the first round of female hair styles from Oishii (They will be color customizable like AventureQuest) I will announce here, on this page, when the female Warrior class goes live today!
The Female Warrior Class is Live! Clear your temporary internet files and create a new character to be one of the first Adventurers in DragonFable to be free of that pesky Y-Chromosome! We are anxious to hear what you think. (Woohoo!)
Notes on Color:
Our ability to use color has really evolved over the past year. Until just recently we have always shaded things with black and white to get our highlight, base, and shaded colors. Any artist could go on for quite some time about why doing this is a bad idea for shading anything other than grays. Most importantly... because adding white to a red cape makes it pink -- instead of just making it a brighter red. When you hear me use the term "Custom Colorizable" what I am refering to is your ability to pick a "base" color, and then the highlights and shading are done automatically by the game. For example, you pick a nice color of green for your hair (see above) and the game automatically adjusts the shadows to be a pleasant darkner green (As pleasant as green hair can be!) This same technique is used on armors, pets, monsters, weapons, and so forth. It is suprisingly hard to do on an animated object... but consistant art quality in the game definately makes it worth it!
... *gulp* ...
Female Warrior and Customizable Hair
We have an ambitious schedule to get both genders of all three starting classes fully functional, along with three large "quest areas" by the end of the month. For this Friday's release we would like to have the "Manage Account" area functional (So if you have not activated your account to unlock more character slots, you can do so) and have the Female Warrior functioning. Also, a working barber shop where you can change your character's hair style and color. Which means, finally... we can take the "Boys only, no girls allowed" sign off of the Warrior's Guild treehouse! (We know they still have cooties though)
Floss... and how Zorbak can help you through Customs
"I went twu waa Wentwist twuday an my mout is stwill nwumb fwrom the nwovicane.... "
*speaks through telepathy instead*
So the moral of today -- Floss! Fortunately I have a new really cool dentist who is into old-school video games. Although, I thought it was odd that he decided.... while I was immobilized by his assistant in the chair of doom and he was impaling my jaw with his needle...to tell me that reads a lot of HP Lovecraft. (I thought Dentists were scary enough as it is!) Then he grabbed the drill.
On the other side of the world, Rivet (Capt'n Rhubarb's new assistant Programmer) was going through Customs for his flight to New Zealand. He was holding a Zorbak and one of the customs officers saw him.... (this is completely serious, I am not joking).... and the customs officer approached him and said he was a HUGE fan of AdventureQuest. Upon finding out that Rivet was working on AQ, the Customs officer moved him straight to the front of the line (skipping about 100 people) ... *insert blank stare and open mouth*
P.S. More Proof -- We really do have the coolest players in the planet!
Special Announcement: Quest Released!
Clear your cache and talk to Ash about the "Elemental Attack" . This is a style of quest I always wanted to put in ArchKnight.... massive non-stop fighting! If you were looking for a fast way to finally get your character to the level cap, this quest was made for you. (Not bad for just a few hours) Battle on!
Happy April Fools!
While we did not get to pull any pranks in DF this year (we will get you next year!) there were a few evil plots brewing at AdventureQuest. For a week before April Fools they let a "fake" administrators forum become visible to the players and pretended that they did not know people were reading it. They talked about secret mergers with big companies and had massive (sometimes too real looking) in-fighting between the staff. Even Galanoth pretended to have quit. Most people realized it was a joke in progress but a surprising 1/3 of those who read it believed it! So... um... "Nanna Nanna Naaaaah naaaaaaah, they got you!" There was also an evil in-game prank in AdventureQuest. Meanwhile, I was at a horse farm being shocked by an electric fence (Note: not pleasant.... not pleasant at all) and my laptop has begun the melting process.... again. *Cries*. Finally, there was a miscommunication about Monday's "Update". I meant that I was going to update you with more information... but as we read on the forums today, everyone believes there will be a new release today. *Gulps* We would hate to dissapoint.... so Cyserco, Zhoom, and I are now moving at maximum speed to release something fun for you tonight! (You = The Boss)