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Devblog

New Cosmetic Features for Guilds Devblog - Game Design, Community - June 20, 2012 - [lichen]
New Ogrine services:
 
You’ve been asking for this for a while now, and we’ve been promising it’s on its way… Now, we’re pleased to announce that two new Ogrine services for guilds will soon be on offer. You’ll be able to rename your guild and change the appearance of its emblem (colours and icons).

These two services are not going to be released with the 2.7.0 update but should be available a few weeks later.
Interface Improvements in 2.7 Devblog - Game Design - June 18, 2012 - [Sili]
Following on from the various Game Design articles about the changes coming to DOFUS in version 2.7, here’s a quick rundown of the main modifications being made to the DOFUS client.
What’s new on Vulkania Devblog - Events - June 15, 2012 - [Izmar]
After its debut last year, Vulkania is becoming DOFUS’s annual summer event, along with the Goultarminator.
 
Unlike Kwismas Island, where the content is clearly aimed at solo players and groups, we wanted to orientate Vulkania around a community aspect. We aim to steer Vulkania in this direction for the coming years, all the while keeping it accessible to less-populated servers.
 
For the second appearance of this event, we wanted to make several changes with the aim of making adventurers’ visits to the archipelago all the more pleasant.
2.7 Update – Level Design Devblog - Game Design - June 13, 2012 - [Izmar]
Hello everyone,

The 2.7 patch will mark the Foggernauts’ arrival in-game, and we’ve decided to give Sufokia a fresh lick of paint for the occasion.
For the 2.7 update, we plan to change how spell point and characteristic scrolls are obtained.

For the 2.7.0 update, we have mainly concentrated to change the mechanic of Sacrifice spells, which are causing major imbalances in PvM and PvP.

The Foggernaut class will be available for testing during the 2.7.0 Beta, but only for DOFUS Premium members (for now). For all the other players, I will try to give an overview of the class and its potential.

Introduction :

The difficulty of forming a team of 8 available characters remains one of the most detrimental factors to the accessibility of dungeons. It also makes them generally too tiresome (fights with 8 real players tend to drag on and lack synergy) and motivates players to resort to using multiple accounts to avoid these problems.
The first glimpse: Goultarminator 2012 Devblog - Community, Events - May 11, 2012 - [Izmar]
Today we're giving you the first report about the progress of Goultarminator 2012!
New update for the Kolossium Devblog - Game Design - March 02, 2012 - [lichen]

For the upcoming 2.6.0 version (which will be on the public beta test server in March) we worked on several improvements for the Kolossium, mainly focusing on solving players’ major issues regarding the rating system.


Interface enhancements
 
A welcomed update is often one rich in new functionality. Which is lucky since the Dofus 2.6 update that we have been presenting to you with for the past few weeks is surely not lacking in new features.


But for an update to be truly successful, it isn't enough to just add new things... we must also improve the existing stuff! So, here are some improvements to the Dofus 2.6 interfaces.

The Temple Dopples are getting a makeover! Devblog - Development - February 27, 2012 - [Korri]

The Temple Dopple system has only had one major change - in April 2009, when 1.27 was released. Ignoring the addition of the Rogue and Masqueraider classes, it’s functionally the same now as it was three years ago, whereas other aspects of the game have developed and expanded.


With this in mind, we’ve decided to bring it up to date and implement several changes. Although the general idea won’t change much, here is a list of improvements that we hope will be of interest to players regardless of the level of their characters.

 

"Why is the big cuddly plush toy so mean?"

Introducing new end-game sets Devblog - Game Design - February 24, 2012 - [Izmar]
…and changes to the Celestial Bearbarian Set

 

Hello everyone! As Sylfaen mentioned in his last Devblog article, there will be quite a few changes in DOFUS 2.6, including a new range of equippable items aimed at end-game players.

XP bonus for Secondary Characters Devblog - Development - February 21, 2012 - [Izmar]

To make it easier to discover the various classes and encourage players to create several characters on the same account, we have decided to develop an XP bonus system for secondary characters.


For the purposes of this feature, we define a secondary character as a character on the same account (and on the same server) as one or more higher-level characters.


The XP bonus will be applied to nearly all types of experience rewards - to quests, the Kolossium, monster battles, using scrolls etc.

 

The bonus will not apply on the Heroic Server; characters on this server already benefit from several additional bonuses that accelerate their development.


The bonus will not apply to guild XP or mount XP either.


The new system will only apply to characters on the same account, as we believe that characters spread across several different accounts are already able to develop at a more than suitable rate.


The XP bonus will depend on the number of characters on the account that have a level greater than the secondary character. Here is a list of the bonuses:

 

  •  1 higher-level character: 100% bonus (XP x2).
  •  2 higher-level characters: 200% bonus (XP x3).
  •  3 or more higher-level characters: 300% bonus (XP x4).


We’ve limited the maximum bonus to 300% because we don’t want a new character to reach end-game level too quickly once the account has more than two higher-level characters. We believe that a 300% bonus is sufficiently tasty to accelerate a character’s rate of development and encourage players to create (and play) several different characters on the same account.


Once the system is in place, any old characters on the account, existing characters or new characters you might create, will benefit from the bonus – but the system isn’t retroactive, so any old characters already on the account will only gain levels at an accelerated rate if you play them after this system is added to the game.

You’ll finally be able to use that blue Sadida “Kumarzplx” that you created in 2006 to sell water in front of the Amakna baker workshop and who has been left in merchant mode ever since!

 


Brigitte put on her best duds to welcome Kumarsplx back to the World of Twelve.


A long example is worth more than a short discussion, so here’s one to get the ball rolling:


If, on the same account and the same server, you have one level 150 character (A), one level 100 character (B), and one level 40 character (C), you’ll benefit from the bonus as follows:

 

  • Character A will not receive any bonus; there are no higher-level characters than Character A on the account.
  • Character B will receive a 100% XP bonus until it reaches character A’s level (150).
  • Character C will receive a 200% XP bonus until it reaches character B’s level (100), then a 100% XP bonus until it reaches character A’s level (150).
  • A brand new character, D, will receive a 300% XP bonus until it reaches character C’s level (40), then a 200% XP bonus until it reaches character B’s level (100), and finally a 100% XP bonus until it reaches character A’s level (150).


Here’s a summary of what we want the new system to achieve:

 

  • Encourage players to try different classes.
  • Encourage players to play several characters on the same account.
  • Allow players who only have one account to play several classes much more easily.
  • Allow players who only have one account to be much more useful in a team situation, as they can more easily switch between several characters of a similar level if the situation requires them to do so.
  • Encourage players to rediscover the game and all of its content with relative ease.


The new system will be in place on the Beta server during the beta test of next update (which is scheduled to be released in March). At the moment we are adding visuals to accompany the new system on the character selection and creation screens and the result screen at the end of a fight.

 


We hope that the new system will encourage you to try new classes and resurrect your old characters. The DOFUS team are already looking forward to fighting you in the Kolossium with our secondary characters! :]

Frigost: what we’ve learnt so far, and where we’re heading!

We’ve noticed that people on the official (and fan) forums are becoming increasingly concerned at what they see as a lack of communication around the third episode of Frigost, and there’s one topic in particular that stands out: when is Frigost 3 actually being released?

 


The castle of Count Harebourg at the heart of the frozen island, has yet to be discovered.


Up until now, the answer we’d given was that there was no great urgency to release another expansion, because of the very small number of players who have actually completed all of the dungeons on the second part of the island. We now understand that this somewhat limited response isn’t enough to give you a sufficiently accurate picture of the current situation, and so we’ve decided to show you some of the statistics our Game Designers use when they’re planning an update.

(Please note: for the purposes of the following article, a character is considered as having access to Frigost if they have completed the quest “Welcome to Frigost”.)

The table below shows the various dungeons on Frigost, and the percentage (rounded down) of characters with access to Frigost that have completed the listed dungeon at least once:

 

Masto Ping Buck Obsi Tengu Korri Kolosso CB 43% 22% 15% 11% 7% 5% 4% 3%

 

These figures include all players, regardless of their level, and so are slightly misleading, since the Frigost dungeons have been designed for characters of level 120 to 200. To provide a more accurate picture, we’ve split them down into two, more relevant player level ranges.

 


Only 3% of all the players to reach Frigost have ever visited him... Even the Celestial Bearbarian can get a bit lonely...


The following table shows the percentage (rounded down) of level 160-180 characters with access to Frigost that have completed the listed dungeon at least once:

 

Masto Ping Buck Obsi Tengu Korri Kolosso CB 82% 48% 27% 13% 5% 2% 1% 0%

 

And the same table for levels 180 to 200:

 

Masto Ping Buck Obsi Tengu Korri Kolosso CB 94% 82% 68% 55% 39% 30% 26% 16%

 

As you might imagine, these figures are far from satisfactory, and in our view, Frigost has not been as successful as we had hoped. Of course 100% of the players can’t be expected to have access to 100% of the content, but even with that taken into consideration we can’t be happy with a situation where only 16% of the most powerful players in the game have completed the last dungeon, when it was never our intention for this content to remain exclusively for the elite. Indeed, over time, with player strategies being improved and shared, and with the addition of improvements to the accessibility of in-game content (being able to leave a dungeon and restart where you left off, and being able to teleport to a dungeon), as well as the increase in the power of characters, this completion figure should be far higher.

As it stands, only a minority of players are able to take full advantage of Frigost’s most advanced content, and the majority of the rest of the players depend on them farming these dungeons in order to be able to have access to the most powerful equipment. We don’t want the situation to go on like this. We want every player, given a reasonable investment of time, to be able to discover and enjoy the different areas of the game.

 


"Dear Tengu Snowfoux,
It hurts our feelings to see you being so selfish by killing all of the players.
We want visitors too!"


With that in mind, the last thing we want to do is make the situation even worse by releasing an expansion that is even more difficult, with even more complex tactics and powerful monsters aimed solely at the most experienced players (levels 190-200). In the present context, releasing Frigost 3 would only add to the divisions within the community.

At Ankama, we really do want to offer our elite players a challenge, with high level content that will meet their exacting standards. It’s something that’s particularly close to my heart, certainly, but unfortunately, in today's context, releasing such content would satisfy less than 3% of our player base.

Before we even contemplate releasing Frigost 3, there are a number of projects that we’d like to bring to fruition. To help you better visualize what will be keeping us busy during 2012, here’s an overview of a few of the things we’ve got lined up.

First of all, accessibility, which was what concerned us most last year, and continues to concern us today. We want to reduce the drudgery involved in organising and forming groups, so that all players, especially solo-accounters, are able to access the more difficult content without being discouraged from doing so.

But beyond the drudgery, the difficulty of the dungeons themselves needs to be reviewed. Although at the time of this devblog we have already nerfed the difficulty of Frigost’s dungeons twice, the numbers are very clear: it's still not enough. Many players still prefer to grind many extremely simple battles (for example, Mastogobs or Blops) rather than doing half the battles for a higher reward, but with greater difficulty. We have been trying to identify when the difficulty becomes too great for these players, what game mechanics frighten them, and how we can reduce this problem without making the content too trivial for players seeking a challenge.

Gears of Dungeon War

As well as a lack of content, we have noticed a lack of diversity in the use of equipment in recent months, which is reflected both in PvP and PvM as more and more players choose to use the same items and sets.


We intend to add new, high level sets to Frigost, and also take the opportunity to upgrade the interest in some of the other dungeons on the “old” continent (which are now rather neglected) by integrating some of their resources into the recipes of these new sets. We also intend to limit the number of items in each new set to encourage players to try out different combinations, and also to split existing sets in order to complement the new ones.

 


Goultard can't wait to see the new equipment borne on the shoulders of the next cadre of gladiators.


Of course, this is only a very brief (and not very specific) overview of what awaits us in 2012. You should also expect some fantastic new features, many of which will be unveiled at the next Ankama Convention. As for the details of the changes that we will be putting in place to make Frigost more accessible and which will finally pave the way for the arrival of new content with even more challenges to face, we will give them to you as the months go by; patch by patch, devblog article by devblog article.

It is important to understand that we’re not giving too much information away about these new changes because we don’t want you to have certain expectations and then end up disappointed. We’d prefer to wait for the update to be finalised before giving you all the details, when there’s less risk of a last minute change.

In summation

No, Frigost 3 will not be released any time soon, and we are not currently working on the development of the expansion. We need to add content that caters to all levels before we do anything else, and improve the accessibility of existing content. It goes without saying that Frigost 3’s release date remains dependent on the effectiveness of these improvements!

The next step in the evolution of DOFUS will begin in early March, with the launch of a beta test of the next update. We recognise that this update will arrive a little later than you would have liked, but the fact that this is the year Ankama will launch its second MMORPG, Wakfu, must be taken into account. Wakfu’s launch is a major event in the company’s evolution and our testing team will be focussing on the new game until its release, and will continue to do so for some time afterwards.


As a result, most of the testing team (which, unlike the development teams are shared between all Ankama projects) are currently working on Wakfu, and so the number of DOFUS updates will have to be reduced, but this doesn’t mean that we’ll be resting on our laurels! We will continue to correct the problems you report, improve what needs to be improved, and work on future releases.

The update that begins with a beta test in March is only the first step on a journey through a year full of fantastic new content.

 

PvP Arena: Kolossium system Devblog - Game Design, Development - August 30, 2011 - [Izmar]
The Vulkania Archipelego Devblog - Development - July 04, 2011 - [Izmar]
Maps of the Goultarminator Devblog - Game Design, Graphics - June 16, 2011 - [Izmar]
Movement range display improvement Devblog - Game Design, Development - June 09, 2011 - [Izmar]
Finding and Joining Groups Devblog - Game Design, Development - May 27, 2011 - [Izmar]