Updates to Great Houses

Hi folks! We have made a couple of changes to Great House mechanics to make things a bit more fair across the board.

First, some time ago the Champions of Avendar got a new vault guard in the form of Yesal-Xea following the permanent death of Aranthas during the Hero of the Abyss plotline. At the time, we tuned her to be quite powerful to compensate for her being a single NPC encounter, but upon evaluation and watching a number of raids we have decided to make changes to her encounter to bring it in-line with the difficulty of other vault guard encounters.

Secondly, in the interests of promoting more interesting interactions and discouraging metagaming, going forward house guards will send a note to active House members upon being raided. We leave it to players to discover the details, extent, and limitations of these changes.

These changes are already live and ready to enrich your play experience.

Happy raiding 🙂

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Ela Oarich Yu

In the Arid Wastes, known as the Ngahe by those who live there, a plague of the mind is spreading. Day by day the Lsakia fall prey to it as their people endure insanity-inducing nightmares, suicides the victims never return from, and other mysterious disappearances. Those afflicted who remain lucid long enough to speak at all scream about profane geometry and the perfection of flesh, but even those desperate cries represent danger, a contagious madness that burns its way through the isolated desert tribe. Old Kyanan rites and blessed tinctures have managed to still the worst nightmares of the tormented and even offer some protection to those unafflicted, but all know these are but stopgaps, not cures.

Now an encampment has appeared in the Ngahe on the long trade route to Ashta Harrud, swarming with black-clad guards and diverse scholars alike. Though tight-lipped, rumors abound of an Isetatan infestation unlike anything ever seen by any living void scholar, and with it the looming threat of a power capable of transforming the desert and every living thing in it into twisted mockeries of flesh. Even the most power-hungry void scholar would pause before treating with such a power, but the lure is great, and tensions mount as word spreads.

But disquieting rumors of flesh-eating insanity in the desert are not the only things pushing people to discontent. The continent of Avendar and the lands beyond it have begun suffering from food shortages due to years of increasing crop failures and livestock death. Fruit withers and rots on the vine while curious blights scythe through fields of cereal crops, leaving them black and desiccated in the span of days; entire herds of cattle go rabid and starve themselves to death and birds lay eggs full of blood or pus. As food prices skyrocket, something felt even by the well-off, the common people starve. Though nothing to clearly link it to the problems in the Ngahe have been found, some begin to wonder if they are connected, and if this is but an omen of what is coming.

As ever when out of options, people begin to look to adventurers to craft solutions. But what can adventurers do about hungry people and hungry demon lords?

What indeed.

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Upcoming Patch News

Hi folks! We know it’s been awhile since we’ve rolled out a major game update, so we wanted to give you a glimpse into what we’ve been working on!

After Avendar was relaunched by the current team the decision was made to temporarily suspend creation of all earth, air, and spirit scholars pending rewrite of the associated classes. This was done because the state that the classes were in was so bad they were literally unplayable by any reasonable metric and in some cases had access to skills or abilities that could cause game crashes or other serious bugs. Part of this update has included focusing on bringing earth and air scholars back and making them creatable again, and this involved the creation of what is effectively 12 brand new classes when taking into account greaters and splits.

We also realized as we were looking at work and expanding into developing or upgrading other areas of the game that our engine did not currently support the kinds of work we want to be able to do, both with these classes and with developing quests, items, areas, and event storylines. This required an overhaul of parts of the engine to support that work, including the addition of several new sub-systems that allow, for example, the creation of new materials with various hardcoded qualities that can now be interacted with. This will allow us to do things like fill an area with flammable gas that actually ignites upon interacting with fire, or allow earth scholars to fine-tune the specific materials and properties of their golems by seeking out areas that possess the materials they want. Again, this is just a sample of the kinds of work we want to be able to do, and the kinds of complexity we are hoping to introduce to our classes and our building.

We have also continued our quest to refine and expand the history and lore of the game setting, classes, and species, particularly in those spaces where they have been lacking. Some areas have been expanded and reworked in places to build upon established frameworks and connect them to other histories and set pieces within the game world. Many cultures that have languished have been significantly expanded and their presence seeded across the game world. We feel doing this is important to make the world feel coherent and interconnected, and it helps us and you to tell better, more interesting stories through your characters.

Whenever possible we avoid making direct retcons of any kind, but one is unfortunately needed: the removal of the kankoran from the game and the setting. This is not a decision made happily or lightly, but the kankoran are actually the intellectual property of Palladium Games, creators of the RIFTS setting from which the kankoran were taken almost one for one. We don’t know who made the decision to include them or why, but Avendar has always prided itself on being a unique fantasy setting absent the usual tropes and cliches of other fantasy MUDs, and Palladium Games is also famously litigious, so the kankoran must go. They are already largely removed from the website and as of the patch no more kankoran PCs may be created. Revised histories and lore will be introduced to the game to smooth the transition as well as expand the histories and portfolios of other gods and cultures. We are slowly working to convert existing kankoran NPCs in the game to other groups. This isn’t difficult, merely time-consuming, and we are unlikely to have finished completely by the time the rest of the patch is finished, but for most purposes the kankoran will be gone.

Fortunately our work has been very steady over the past year and change. Most of the engine work is complete at this point and we are in the process of doing final passes on earth and air scholars and the multitude of areas and quests we have added or updated. This involves quite a lot of writing as well as pre-preparation for the event we are using to introduce this patch and some of the changes that are accompanying it. Our goal for this event is to involve as many people as possible, so please look forward to opportunities to do so and for teasers of upcoming happenings. If you want to be involved and aren’t sure how, please reach out to Elanthe over Discord or send a note to immortal.

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