Monday, March 30, 2020
DragonFable in March, 2020
Hey there, heroes!
I'd like to take a few moments to discuss the state of DragonFable for all of those new, returning, or even just curious players out there.
Who are we?
First off, hi! I'm Verlyrus. I'm one of DragonFable's co-leads. I'm the coder, bugfixer. primary storywriter, and designer for DragonFable, and I also write the Design Notes and newsletters (among other things).
My co-lead is Dove, who some of you may remember as Tomix. Despite the name change, Dove is still the primary artist and animator, as well as quest builder, sound designer, and storywriter.
The two of us work together with other writers (such as San Robin, Aeon, Inanitas, Eric Greydawn, and Elryn) and artists (such as Dracelix, or you may notice some borrowed art from AQW or AQC) to create the world, story, and game of DragonFable.
We also have Captain Rhubarb, who helps us with database and web set ups!
What is DragonFable?
DragonFable is an online single-player RPG, built in Flash. It's an expansive world that's been around since 2006, and still receives weekly updates with quests, challenges, wars, and more. Yes, the story's still chugging, and game is still being updated.
Do I have to pay money to play?
While the game is free-to-play, playing as such can be restricive in terms of equipment and armor skills. You can make a one-time purchase to receive a Dragon Amulet, which unlocks the majority of the content in the game. I like to think of the free-to-play option as a very generous extended demo, and getting a Dragon Amulet as the full version.
If you wish to support us more, or are enticed by our Dragon Coin items, you may also purchase Dragon Coins for your characters, which will provide access to cool items and playstyles.
I know, I know, microtransactions, ugh! However, we do our best to avoid any pay-to-win scenarios. While some items or armors may provide a boost to certain players, there are definitely non-DC alternatives that match or beat Dragon Coin items.
Dragon Coin armors, while powerful, usually offer alternative playstyles rather than being overpowered machines. They're new skillsets, graphics, and animations!
Of course, it's very possible to beat the game without a Dragon Amulet or Dragon Coins, but I do suggest getting a Dragon Amulet for the full experience. Especially if you think we deserve your support!
Where do I start? What's going on?
If you're new or returning to the game, you'll have to first decide on which Book you'd like to start with.
Book 1 sets the scene and story, and is the start of your adventure in the world of Lore (Yeah, that's the name of the world). You'll meet allies and companions, and face a nemesis bent on destruction.
However, it is the very beginning of DragonFable. The mechanics and story, while nostalgic, may not have aged the best over the years. It will definitely take some patience to play through, but it will pay off by setting the scene for Books 2 and 3.
Book 2 is an intermediary chapter, set between the finale of Book 1, and the leading directly into Book 3. It's intended to be played after Book 1. You can't start a new character here.
Book 3 is the most recent (although, we've been here for quite the while!) book. It's also the second choice you have for starting a new character. When you start Book 3, you'll be thrown into an unfamiliar world with characters who know you, and expect you to know them. However, if you work through the story, you'll meet up with our current release schedule, which includes the latest in mechanics (such as cutscene skip buttons for repeat playthroughs, text appearing over your character in scenes, etc), and story.
There's definitely downsides to starting in either Book 1 or Book 3, but that's okay! Once you make it out of Oaklore Keep in either book, you're free to travel between the past and present. You can jump around Book 3 until you find yourself out of your depth, for example, then head back to Book 1 to learn about these characters.
And we have a handy in-game timeline for both books to help you keep track of what to do and where you are in the story.
There's a ton to play thorough, but DragonFable will always be around, so feel free to play at your own pace.
It is worth noting, however, that Book 3's early story is currently receiving monthly updates to bring it into line with present Book 3's quality and standards, as well as be less confusing for new players. You can check past Design Notes for more info on that.
So what's the game's updates like?
Glad you asked!
Currently, we run a monthly schedule as follows:
- Week 1: Inn at the Edge of Time challenges.
- These are end-game challenges that reward the best gear and provide the biggest challenges to players. It's recommended that you reach at least level 50 or higher before taking these on, although specific ones can be done at much lower levels.
- Week 2: Side Story
- These are quest chains that have their own place and characters in the world. The monthly schedule means that they're updated slowly, but we have many already finished as well. You can check out the timelines in the Book of Lore to see when they take place in relation to the main story.
- Week 3: Main Story
- Book 3's main story, The End of Magic receives (mostly) monthly updates. This week and week 2 may sometimes be swapped, or in the case of holiday events, may be skipped for the month.
- Week 4: Re-imagined
- The fourth week of every month, we dedicate to reworking, repolishing, rewriting, and bug-fixing. Currently, we're working on redoing early Book 3, although sometimes we'll poke other old content or even revist more recent releases for polish and updates.
So there you have it! We have end-game challenges, multiple storylines, and bug fixing and reworking.
Of course depending on the season or any unforeseen circumstances (there's only the two of us after all), the schedule may change. But we do try ot stick to it.
We also have "big projects" in the works, including class reworks, an extensive hard mode (still being worked on, I promise!), and the Book 3 story rework, as well as any bug fixes or mechanics changes or quality of life things that may pop up along the way!
There's always something new each week, and across the month, we try to have something for every kind of player.
That's great and all, but isn't Flash leaving like, by the end of 2020?
It's true, Flash is going the way of the dodo... in browsers!
Luckily, we have a solution! The Artix Game Launcher provides a standalone Flash player that will let you play DragonFable (and other AE games too!) without the need for browser support.
You can get it here!
I need help! I don't know what to do or buy, and this didn't really help me at all!
Well, luckily, we have an incredible community to help you out. You can join the official Artix Entertainment Discord server, ask questions on the offical forums, or even search for some of the amazing and active fan Discords. You can also ask us on Twitter! While we may not always reply, we'll do our best to answer your questions (Or if not us, someone else may.).
You can also read through the years of Design Notes for all of the updates and details along the way! It's a pretty great story.
Regardless if you're just here to see what has or hasn't changed, finding out about DragonFable for the first time, or a regular player, I'd like to thank you for your interest and consideration. We've kept the game going this long, and we'd certainly like to think it's only getting better and better. We'd be happy to have you along for the ride.
Want to play DragonFable without using an internet browser?
Follow us on Twitter for sneak peeks and updates (and feel free to tweet us your fan art and feedback too!)