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Overview[ | ]

The Q&A Tracker is a collection of the questions and their answers from released livestreams and other media, all in one location for those who are looking for something specific.

For more specific criteria, you can use your browser's find section (typically Ctrl+F) to look for more narrow results. Searching for #physics would pick out all the Q&A dealing with physics, and so on.

Inspired by the Chasing Mark Jacobs Document that collected Q&A from the comments section of the Kickstarter during it's campaign. Special thanks to the individual(s) that put that together.

** Disclaimer ** The questions and answers may be edited to be more concise, terse, and/or to cut out banter or inside jokes. This is done for clarity, and the spirit of the questions and answers will be kept as much as possible. Names are also removed.

#Tag Glossary[ | ]

Class Reveal[ | ]

Q&A from a series of weekly videos that revealed ten sets of combat archetypes at the end of winter 2015. These videos were hosted by Mark Jacobs and Ben Pielstick

Archer Archetype Reveal Q&A[ | ]

10-09-2015 - The Archer Archetype Reveal

Category Q&A


#divine intervention
#death curse

Q: What's your vision of pre-made abilities such as Divine Interventions and Death Curses, seems everyone is going to have some divine interventions and death curses. What are these?

A: The whole concept again between DI and DC and abilities, are—these are not abilities in the way that we're describing abilities. Abilities, whether they're based on components, or even if we had some precooked abilities, those are meant to be used all the time. That is how you will level your character. This is how you play the game. A divine intervention and a death curse—these are, essentially, just like in Pen and Paper games, at least the games that have that, you're rolling the dice because you're about to die. You know, you're rolling the dice knowing that you are absolutely going to die. You're willing to die and you're going "to hell with you" that would be the Viking's attitude "to hell with you", and you're calling on these abilities. So, keep that in mind. These DIs, these DCs, are not abilities in the sense that they're meant to be used all the time. They will have a long re-use timer on it, so if you use your death curse, don't expect to come right back into the game and be able to use another death curse or another death curse, or even the same death curse, right away, because that would make them pointless, and that would also make them a lot less fun, you know, for other players, right?

It would be less fun, and it would also make combat very crazy, because if you were using your death curse every time you died, and everybody was using their death curse every time they died, and you had a big battle in which people were dying all the time, everybody would be exploding and causing catastrophes and all sorts of the crazy things that happen in these abilities—we don't want those to happen all the time. We want them to be unique and rare, and to be used in situations in which you think they will actually make a considerable difference. Because if you're using a death curse, let's say, just to spite someone, just because you felt like using it, and it's not really going to change the outcome of a fight, that's kind of wasteful. But if you use it in the middle of a fight that's close, you might be able to—even though you died—get that last big hit in, or get that last, you know, control bit in that wasn't going to happen otherwise, but you died and you threw that out and put that little bit of extra effort in that could actually make a difference and turn a fight. So we want them to be situational, and used when appropriate. Not all the time.



Q: Can you talk a little about quivers? Specifically the Blackguard because his Death Curse uses them. How will ammo in general work?

A: Ammo in general, right now, is really broken up into two different types. We've said—and we've talked about this on the forums as well—that basic ammo, you're going to be either able to carry an awful lot of it, or it will be just something that you can have in an unlimited amount. But these are very basic arrows. These are just like, um, you know, uh, melee fighters—you don't want to always be running out of your basic—if your sword broke every battle, nobody would want to play a melee guy. And it's the same with the archers. We know that you can't carry 3000 arrows. I mean, that would really break the whole encumbrance thing that we've talked about from the beginning. So you're always going to have a basic, or a supply of very basic arrows. However, the more powerful arrows, the arrows that will be made by crafters. Those things you're going to have to carry like an inventory item. Now, will it be 50? or 100? Whatever the number is; that's obviously something that we have to work out during Beta. But, they are two separate things. You will be able to, at least right now, always have an arrow that you can shoot. 'Cause, especially in the case of the Blackguard, if you couldn't carry enough arrows to go out into the woods and actually do something, there'd be nothing else for you to do. And that'd get, you know, obviously, pretty boring. So, you know, look, there's a fine line there. We know we've said no hand holding, and I think this is a good way of saying, you know, yes, the more powerful arrows, the arrows that you're going to want to use most of the time, you've got to be smart about. But, there will be plenty of opportunities to use the basic arrows, um, you know, quite effectively. And we've also talked, as well, about carrying essentially components that you can use, you know, as an archer that are made by crafters which you could them assemble. You can't do it during a fight, but during downtime, you could assemble those components into additional arrows that you could use after the assembly.

There's a bit of these details that we still have to work out the exact functionality of, but the general idea is that we don't want you just running out of arrows. Not, at least, very often. We want to allow for that, because it means that you do have to consider your ammunition but we don't want that happening all the time, we don't it to be a huge limiting factor where you're constantly worried about—every fight I use up all my arrows and I constantly have to go back and get more. So if you're carrying around enough extra arrows. If you're playing a forest stalker and you're getting free extra arrows because you're in a forest, or if you're just carrying around some of these components in your backpack, and you're like "hold on a minute, let me put together some more of these and fill my quiver back up." You know, there need to be some methods that happen there, just exactly like Mark said, just like a sword. Like, if your sword breaks every fight, you're not going to want to play this game very long. So there's going to be a enough of a cycle there that you're not going to have to worry about it on too frequent of a basis. And how frequent that is? That's something that's going to have to come up through testing because we could just make up a number right now, but we haven't tried it, and we haven't gotten all the complaints that say people don't like it that way and make it longer, "I never have to worry about arrows, why do I even care?" and so make it shorter. So, we'll play with that some, and it will be something that—no doubt—goes back and forth, so the first time we do it, if you guys are out there playing the game, keep in mind this is something that will change, because we're just going to put it in the way that we think it will probably go, and then we will adjust from there.



Q: Can you salvage and recover arrows from the dead, or enemies arrows. I know we've talked a little about pieces, parts as you go. What about maybe using another realm's arrows?

A: Yeah, so, that's something we would really like to be able to do. Obviously, these arrows being crafted means that they will have a durability to them, even if you can recover them so you can't just, you know, go out some days, fire a bunch of arrows, collect a bunch of arrows, and every day you're doing that and so nobody ever has to make new arrows, because they're always just picking up and throwing arrows around. So even if you can salvage complete, intact arrows from the battlefield the fact that they've been fired and used means that that will count against their durability and they will eventually have to be replaced. We would like to be able to have scavenging, because it would be really cool, but it's a technical feature we'll to have to figure out exactly how we're going to implement—whether you'd have to have some way for the world to track what arrows exist in an area, and then you use scavenging and it collects from that pool, or whether we can actually have all these physics objects lying around that you can go around and individually pick up. That's a lot of polys lying around on the ground that we probably don't want. So we'll probably have to come up with something that's somewhat abstracted there, but salvaging arrows from the battlefield is something we'd like to do to some extent.



Q: Is a short range skirmish, a la WAR's Shadow Warrior will be something that it possible, or is that too fast for this game?

A: I don't want to say exactly fast, but that's sort of what the Winter's Shadow is, right. He's sort of the skirmish archer, right. He has his shield so that if somebody gets up to him he can bash him with his shield. He'll be able to out an axe or a sword or something, and fight sort of close range. But he also has a bow, and so he will do best when making use of that, and kind of going back and forth between the two as needed, depending on people trying to close with him. As far as the actual pacing, the Shadow Warrior, as far as Warhammer, I don't want to get into all the specific minutia of the details of that, but the mobility is much higher in a lot of these other games, where you're allowed to run at full speed, and fire at full speed, and do full time kiting. That's something that we're not going to stick with. If you have your bow out you're fine to run around at normal combat speed just like somebody having a sword out. You're going to slow down with each progressive step, of like, okay, I've loaded—nocked an arrow, right, that's going to slow you down a little bit. And you're drawing your arrow—you're ready to aim and shoot somebody—that's going to slow you down, so you're not running around, you know, kiting at full speed while firing arrows, running backwards and shooting people. It's going to slow it down a little bit more than that. So it's going to be a bit more tactical, you're going to have to be somewhat more careful, but not as much as a mage who has really stand in a fixed location and use spells and stop in order to cast.



Q: How prominent is camouflage for the class overall? Is it a core focus, or something that's just added on?

A: I think it's a very important part of the class, especially for the Stalkers and the Shadows. I mean, these guys, not only part of their survivability, but part of their usefulness, when they so solo of course is camouflage, right? If you've got a bunch of your folks and you want to play a group that is guarding the borders, or guarding an area, being able to camo and hide 'cause you know those nasty other realms happen to be heading in your direction—having effective camo is kind of important. Will it be useful—and again—like stealth? With being able to go pop right back into camo? No. It will not. It is not stealth. It is not intended to be stealth. But it needs to be useful, especially for those folks who want to play the solo character who's hiding, who's waiting for the right opportunity to jump into a fight, or to start a fight. So, yes—it's important, yes—it's going to be something that factors heavily into their make up, but not in that sort of way of other games, of popping out of stealth, taking a shot at somebody, and then popping right back in. That is not part of how camouflage is going to work in this game.


#reaction system

Q: What is planned to happen when an arrow projectile hits a spell projectile? Is there an interaction? Do they deflect each other?

A: Magic! I mean, that's what's supposed to happen, right? It's AIR! That was the whole point, or one of the points behind the [A.I.R. system]]. Anything that can be cast, whether it is a spell, anything that can be thrown, or shot, like the projectiles of archers. All this is meant to interact with each other. That's the key. And whether it's a fireball hitting an arrow, or it's an arrow, or certain arrows that are made for deflecting—you know—magical attacks, that's all part of AIR. So, you know, as soon as we get the archers into the game and working, we're going to be playing with that.

Archer Archetype


Q: Will you be able to use bows while being hit from enemy melee?

A: Archers obey the same disruption rules that everyone in the game obeys, so if you're taking damage, it's not just the damage you're taking, but the disruption damage that you're taking. So, depending on the disruption health of your ability, you might be able to survive somebody hitting you, assuming they're not hitting you with a lot of disruption damage. If they hit you with a lot of disruption damage, your ability that you're in the process of is going to be interrupted, and that may have a number of very bad effects, depending on the components that you're using. But, in general, you don't, probably, want to be hit a whole lot while you're using bow abilities. In the same way that you don't want to be hit a lot if you're using magic abilities.

But if you could do that, if you're in a good fight, and you think, well, boy, I'm about to die, but I think the other guy's about to die, you might take the chance, rather than trying to put away the bow and draw a weapon, or even run away, and not use a death curse or DI, to hope that the guy won't get enough disruption damage to block the shot that might kill him. So you can still do it. Certainly, it's not something that's just binary, one or the other.

This is not a full hard interrupt system, where anything that touches you interrupts every ability that you're using. There's a wide range of how easily disrupted your ability is, based on the components that you used to create it. And then there's the possibility space of how hard is that guy going to hit me with something that actually tries to disrupt me. If he's just trying to do pure damage, he might not be disrupting you that hard, and you might be able to get some of your abilities off. So there's always that chance.

We don't want a game where is somebody breaths on a mage, somebody breathes on an archer, and all of a sudden they can't use their attacks, because that would be silly. That's not good RPS, you know, especially nowadays.


#melee viability

Q: Will archers have access to melee weapons? Will the weapons available be different depending on realm?

A: They will have melee weapons. We don't list everything, obviously, we're just giving you a few samples in these reveals, so that's not comprehensive of all the things they can do—we'rejust trying to give a few of the highlights that give you a flavour of what this class is generally going to play like. Everyone can use weapons unless specifically stated otherwise.

You know, where we say 'this guy specifically can't use this', or 'this guy specifically needs to use this', in the case of some abilities that require specific interactions with specific weapons and things. But, yeah, archers, you know, if you want to pick up a sword as an archer, you can definitely do that, and you probably should in most cases, have a backup weapon, even if you're not highly specialized into that like that blackguard, like, probably will want to carry a secondary just so that when somebody gets up on him, he can hit them with a weapon and fight back which will probably be a lot better then him just trying to point-blank shoot bow abilities back at somebody who's hitting him with a melee weapon.


#body parts

Q: Will archer shots target body parts?

A: Yes. Body part targeting is part of a lot of abilities, archery is definitely one of those. We're currently in the process of working that into our system. Obviously, as you've seen, we've done a little bit of testing with wounds. We're going to be expanding on that, getting into wounds to different body parts, then we're going to get into the ability components that use those body parts as specific targets, but we're also trying to integrate our physics system into that, as far as validation is concerned. So if some guy is peeking up over the top of a wall, and you're trying to shoot at his foot, and you can't see his foot, you can't hit it, just because physics says you that can't. But you're still going to be able to bake in your ability that you intended to do that. So if you can hit somebody, and you can have physical line of sight to those body parts, that you can hit them. So we're going to try to work that out, but that is, again, another work in progress thing. But, yes, just the general short answer of, 'can I target with archery different body parts?' Yes.


#divine intervention

Q: Blackguard divine intervention indicates that it can target someone in camo. How do you prevent that from abuse by UI Mods?

A: He's talking about being to hack the UI and find people who are in camo. It's a specific attribute of that ability, so when that ability is triggered, that will find the person who is in camo. This is, again, going into the intricacies of the stealth system in general, I mean, camo is not the same as stealth because it has different restrictions, but it follows the same underlying system as far as the code is concerned for, you know, can your client have knowledge of other characters who are in stealth, and the answer is no, because that would lead to radar. So, in that way, stealth and camo are basically obeying the same systemic rules. And so, different abilities violating those rules and allowing you to detect people, or allowing certain abilities to work, it's a message from the client to the server that says, 'I'm going to try and use this ability, can I do it or not?', and then the server has to be authoritative on whether that's possible to hit somebody who is stealthed, or to be able to detect somebody who is not necessarily there, because the client doesn't even know about it.

And the thing, as well, to keep in mind, again, is that DI ability is not an ability that is meant to be used all the time. It is something that, again, will have a very long re-use timer. It is not something that you're going to, in a single battle, or even in multiple battles, on the same day, necessarily, be able to use. And it's so important to keep that in mind. Otherwise, there might be issues. But this isn't one—this is not going to be a problem, because, again, these things are not meant to be used a lot in a a single day, let alone in a single battle. You will not be able to use death curses—I can guarantee—you won't be able to use death curse twice in one battle.


#Winter's Shadow

Q: You talked about progression, as like, let's say, Winter's Shadow, you want to train your bow abilities, but because of being forced into defence, you're required, in order not to die, to use your shield as much or more than your bow. Will there be way to counter this unwanted training of skills?

A: If you feel that it's mandatory, if like, well if I don't use a shield if I don't use a set of abilities, I'm just bad. Well don't use a shield.

Honestly, I just don't see it as being unwanted, right? If you don't want to level up anything in the game, we could say, well no you can turn off levelling. So I don't think—honestly, I think if you pull out your shield, it should level. If you don't pull out your shield, then it won't level. Because it's not automatic. You can't just go into combat, use your archery abilities, and then when somebody comes up to you, you switch to the shield. You don't. You have to make that choice to use your shield.

But if we're giving it to him as a big part of his character, right, a big benefit of this character and what makes him different from other characters is that he can use a shield. If you choose not to use that shield, you could do that.

It's not necessarily going to be the best choice. So they're feeling like, 'I'm kind of forced into using it', and yeah, you kind of are. It's like 'I want to play an archer, but I don't want to use a bow.

Well, we're not forcing you to use that bow, but you kinda should. So, you know, the shield is a less strong choice than that, because if you wanted to play a Winter Shadow without using a shield, you certainly could do that, you're going to miss out on a bunch of things. There might be some alternative choices in there where maybe there's a dual wield version of him, where he doesn't actually use the shield, and so he can go into melee and not have to carry a shield around with him, if he really doesn't want to. But he is kind of a back-and-forth hybrid. A big part of his core components is that he has good weapon switching, so that he can switch back and forth from his bow to something else. So if you're not doing that, and you want to stick exclusively with your bow, that's probably not going to be the best pathway to go for that character.


#Winter's Shadow

Q: Would there be a drawback to frequently be in a defensive position, where he wants to specialize in bow damage, could his shield being higher than his bow prevent him from making progress on his bow because of some aggregate soft cap.

A: No. That's the whole point. If you have, whether it's a hybrid, or a class that has abilities that might not be the ones you would think at first would be associated with the class. We wouldn't put you guys in a position of, well, you can't level up your bow up all the way because of your shield. If his shield is part of the planned mechanics of the character, then of course you're going to be able to level them up.


#trick shots

Q: Combat physics sound really interesting to where we're going to be able to target certain body parts. Does this mean we could possibly have ricochet or trick shots?

A: I don't want to commit to that at this point. One of the things that we had as, sort of a bug earlier is sort of the default behaviour for abilities is that they would bounce off of things. And so we've talked about that here and there, about putting that back in—probably not something for arrows because that's a little bit too crazy-fantasy of bouncing arrows off of things. But something that you know, maybe magic abilities might leverage to some extent, if they can ricochet off of things, or specifically if they can roll down hills and other things like that might be something that some abilities will be capable of doing in the game.

Not a chance of committing to it now. We've got to get a lot of other things working, you know, in physics, and in servers, as always, server-side physics, before we'd even consider putting something like that in there. Except for fun.


#visual cues

Q: How do you visualize the archer into a visual game? For example, heavy war arrow does extra disruption damage. Will the arrow glow a different colour? How will victims know victims know that that is a highly disruptive attacks versus a high damage attack? Will there by a floating rune system like the mage, etc.

A: For certain things, we'll do callouts. Probably not for things that are just on a sliding scale, like that. You know, can you tell the difference between a sword attack that does 10 damage and a sword attack that does 15 damage? Probably not visually. You're probably just going to get hit for an amount of damage and then you can tell how much damage you just took. So, not everything is going to get that level of differentiation, but something that is going to have a really special affect, like, you know, on the forest stalker, if they're attaching plants to their abilities, you might see that arrow looks like it's got vines trailing behind it or something, so you can tell, oh, that's something that's actually got a very unique and different gameplay effect, as opposed to something that just has a slightly different stat, or a different amount of damage. Or flaming arrows, or things like that. Anything with a different effect.

We really want to call it out. And it's easy to call out, right? Because if something's going to be hard to see, and distinguish in melee, or in combat, the odds are it's not worth a lot of effort. But if it's things that can easily be well represented by Mike, you know, through particle effects, or any other system—we're just simply building bigger projectiles, right? Arrows don't necessarily have to all be the same size.

Archer Archetype


Q: Will archers have the longest range in their realm for the three classes, or will some mages have longer range that the realm's archer?

A: Maybe, and the reason for maybe, um, is one of the things we've talked about from the beginning—and we're not trying to dodge the question, honestly—is what role will Mages have in siege combat. If—and the plan still is of course for Mages to be very effective in siege combat—and if that's the case, spells like the fireball which you've seen during testing, or things that have a long and, you know, very, uh, high arc, you can argue that they have a greater range. You know they're travelling a greater distance. Now, these spells will be, most likely nigh-to useless in non-siege situations, you know, 'cause they'll be slower. They'll be cast from a long distance. So you can argue that they might have the longest range in the game. But in group combat, or in, you know, one on one combat, you would never try to use one of these spells. First of all they take forever to cast. And you can just, you know, kind of move away from them. So, that's why it's not an attempt to dodge the question. It's just, when you have a system like ours, where you can have mages do things that they don't normally do in other games. Where you have spells that don't act like spells in any other game. The concept of who has the longer range, is not, you know, one that's easily answered. And highly situational.

Like, in specific situations, there will be a yes or a no answer, that's very clear, like, uh, probably the—the biggest thing to differentiate is to say that arrows are very fast-moving projectiles. And so they're very effective at player targeting.
Whereas spells might have tracking, and might have, uh, more power to them in some cases, versus some situations. But they're not going to—if they're tracking projectiles that ignores gravity, and the mage has to, you know, use in such a way they're not going to go as far. And so if you're going to use a big siege ball, or something, that's going to go pretty far but it's still going to move fairly slowly compared to the travel speed of an arrow so it's not going to be as good at, like, anti-personnel type situations. Uh, and so there's a lot of differences. Now a mage could still cast a giant, you know, uh, firestorm in the sky and then have some, you know, group of people pushing it in a direction, and like—does that have a long range? Well yeah. It goes really far and it covers a giant area, but, like, we're not even talking apples-to-apples about the same things, so you know, it's a very hard question to answer in that way. One thing I will say, and probably should point out, though, is that range in our game is very far. So, if you're used to plyaing these games that have a max range of, you know, 30 metres, 60 meters, whatever. Uh, our ranges are typically much father than that. So, when you talk about who has a farther range, it's like, well, engaging someone at max range means you're shooting things so far that your accuracy is going to be fairly inconsistent when it gets to using those abilities. So, where it becomes effective is a much more sliding scale. As things get closer to you, the time to hit—because projectiles are not hit scan, they're actually travelling through the air as physics objects—the time to hit becomes much shorter and so the effectiveness goes up. And so fighting even at max range is not necessarily going to give you, uh, the results it would have in another game in which, you know, as soon as somebody steps into range evertying is functioning at max effectiveness.


#group dynamics

Q: Generally speaking how are archers going to be desirable? Will they overtake their Mage counterparts in group vs group situations?

A: So, archers primarily deal physical damage as opposed to magic damage. Um, there are some fundamental differences there, where, it depends a lot on armor, because, uh, arrows, primarily using piercing damage, need to penetrate the target's armor. Heavy armor is good at resisting piercing damage, cloth, not so much. Um, so, depending on the targets that you're selecting, the groups that you're tending to fight against, the more heavily armored they are, the less effective archery is going to tend to be. Uh, magic doesn't care about that so much. It cares about magic resistance. It cares a lot about the engraving system that we're going to be talking more about here in the future, and uh, the general magic resistances that targets have. So somebody that's in very light armor still might have very good magic resistance. And so, a mage might be having a very hard time with somebody that an archer would have a very easy time with. So it depends on the characters. Um, as we mentioned a little bit earlier, also, uh Mages tend to be fairly immobile, most of them. Uh, archers all sort of have, uh, an inherent mobility, in that, you know, when you're drawing and firing, you know, you're less mobile than you would be if you were just running around doing nothing, but you still have some good mobility, and, uh, and in a lot of cases you can do, uh, a lot more by, you know, slight adjustments here and there, whereas mages want to, kind of, tend to, build up there area and kind of stick to these—sort of—static locations. So if you're in a group that's highly mobile, a group that's going after low-armor targets. If you specifically want somebody in your group to pick off low armor targets, um, you're going to want to have an archer as opposed to a mage. Mages have, you know, various other things, and when we get to talking about Mages we'll talk about some of, their benefits. We're going to primarily talk about archers. So I'm not going to get into all the cool things that mages do, but, um, yeah, using arrows, using piercing damage, uh, and being mobile and picking off people at a long range is a lot of what archers do.

And it also depends on, not only what you're targets are, or who your targets are, but where you're fighting. If you're a TDD archer and you know you're going to be spending most of your time in—or, TDD group, sorry—and you're going to be spending most of your time in Viking's land, or in Arthurian's land, then some of your abilities won't be as effective. And that will factor into your choice as a group. Alright, do you want to take, you know, the archer who won't be quite as effective today as he was when we were, uh, sitting, you know, back and defending our realm. So maybe, the trade-offs with a mage won't feel, you know, as bad this time. Or not as bad, but you know, it won't be—it will not be as helpful, uh, to have the TDD archer this time as it might have been the day before. So, uh, just like the last question, it's really situational.


#melee balance
#range balance

Q: With so much range, won't this be a handicap to melee and aren't they at a disadvantage? And contrary, if projectiles need to hit a target to deal damage, will this affect range characters's DPS, and will players favor melee over range a lot due to this?

A: Isn't this perfect? This is great. I mean, this is awesome. So, you know, one of the things—and just to segue a little bit, and for a very short period of time. When I was in law school, and acting as an arbitrator, uh, during my first year, one of the things that they tried to teach us was that the best deal that you could make as an arbitrator is when both sides were unhappy with it. And that is perfect, because right now you really do have two people looking at the same system and going, well, but this is bad for this group, and then they're going this is good for that group. So—and that's what's really fascinating, the game is balanced when everyone is overpowered.

That's the best part of this kind of a system. So, you know, if combat—if melee combat, uh, well I should say, if ranged combat is very powerful. If it is always tracking 100%. If it's not projectiles, but really spells, then you'd be absolutely right. Melee characters would be in a lot of trouble depending on what survivability abilities we give them, right? But in this game, with projectiles tracking, but not tracking like the latest and greatest homing missile, you know, ever invented by man. You're going to have, as a melee character, the ability to just get out of the way. You know, to dodge some of the abilities. Not by, you know, bunny hopping—not bunny hopping—not by active dodging and rolling, and double tap and all that, but by using the terrain.

You can certainly hide behind rocks and trees and things, and move, and that's something we've seen, you know, quite a bit, even vs magic, with the long ranges that magic has in the, uh, the current version of the game when we do play tests, is that you have to take into consideration, if you're just in the middle of an open field and there's a melee guy who's way out here, and a mage who's way out here. The melee guy's going to have a pretty rough time, um, but again that's in the current version of the game. We don't have armor, we don't have damage resistances or shield's working yet.

Imagine you're a melee character with a shield, in heavy armor, and arrows are just going to be, you know, getting stuck in your shield and bouncing off of you as you're closing on this guy who's just like, frantically shooting arrows at you, and like, you're going to have a pretty easy time closing up to him. Um, but if you don't have very good damage resistance, and a mage starts throwing stuff at you, you're going to not have as good of a time. So there's situations where it's good and situations where it's bad. Um, but, just as a general principal, because melee characters tend to wear heavier armor than—than non-melee characters—except for stealth, but you have stealth so you don't worry about this as much. Um, if you're just running around in heavy armor you have an inherent advantage against arrows because arrows are physical attacks. So that will help compensate for that a little bit.

And one of the things that we talked about—actually before this—was the idea of looking again at arrows as not being magical spells. They can't go through trees. They can't go through rocks. They can't go through, you know, anything else that exists in the world. So, you know, yes, if you're on a totally open field, you're going to be in a bit of trouble. But, if you're in the forest. And even if you're in the TDD forest, and the TDD have uh—the archers have advantages there—they can't just shoot you through the forest. These projectiles still have to pass through the trees. So, even if there's a longer distance for you to cover, you've got—well, you've got cover. You've got things that can deflect, and can absorb, uh, these arrows. So, trade-offs. Always.


#target penetration

Q: Will arrows be able to pass through a low armor enemy doing damage like, in his hand, and hit a second target in the leg?

A: No. We have absolutely, no plans yet to implement something like that. Is it something we could always look at in the future—or we could look at in the future? Maybe. But let's get it—let's get the system working were we can actually shoot an arrow and hit the intended target before we worry about if that arrow then could pass through the hand, continue its flight, and move on to another target. Though I'm sure Rob would be fascinated to try to figure out how to make that work.



Q: Given the amount of tech to get archers right, will we see them in the game soonish? Also, will NPC bunnies have camo?

A: Well, I've said this before and I'll say it again. Camo for bunnies is confirmed.

I think bunnies will have fairly high concealment. I'm not sure they will actually use camo. But they could. I think we you know, should, give them the ability to use camo, make them impossibly, we should level them up, and give them, you know, big teeth, and things like that too.

Okay, that might be going a bit much, but it's not actually far-fetched that bunnies would use camo. Just throwing that out there. They certainly will have relatively good concealment because they are small. To give out a somewhat serious answer to a kind of ridiculous question.

Um, so tech and archers.

I don't have a timeline—obviously, we had archers in, in the game, some of you may, or may not know, we had archers in the game a while ago, and started testing them out, and found that we had some core issues that we couldn't resolve at that time, because it would have taken a lot longer of engineering time, and then we would have had to push out the schedule on some of our other things that were higher priority, so, we kind of took them back out, and have them slated for a kind of pass 2, uh, before we get them back in. Um, We have a lot of the animations ready, once we get, uh, some of the more animation stuff working, uh, we have to do a bit more work on our stance system, um, and, we need to work on some targeting related things, uh, and a couple things we're not even talking about yet before we, get some of the cooler and, uh, more unique features of our archers in that we'll talk about later. So, I don't know if we have even on the schedule when the timeline is between now and Beta, but this is a Beta feature.

So, Beta will not begin without this working. Sometime between now and Beta, this will happen. It will probably happen—as with most things, when you guys are in these play tests—in small progressive steps. Where it starts out, and it's kind of wonky and it doesn't work very well, and doesn't do very much, and it gets a little bit better, and a little bit better with each play test, until, you know, by Beta, it's going to be, uh, solid and fun in a way, that you know, we get a lot of good feedback and get a lot of iteration time.

And that's exactly why we picked them as one of the opening trios because they need it. And the longer that we'll have to play with these guys, the better they'll be. So, yeah, they are absolutely confirmed as one of the Beta trios we said that last week, we'll say it this week, and we'll probably be saying it for the next eight weeks after this one. These guys have to be given time for you folks to play with and for us to balance them.

Arms and Armor

#weapon variety

Q: What different varieties of bows will the different classes have access to? How much variety will there be, and will they have different effects, noticeable ranges differences, etc.

A: Think of them as bows like any other weapon, right? If, crafters could only make one type of sword, and the difference between these swords was almost nothing, then crafters are going to be pretty mad at me, and, you know, so will the folks who use the swords, because we've been talking about—right from the beginning, even before the Kickstarter—of having a crafting system that matters. So if all bows are the same—just like if all swords are the same—then the crafters are going to be out of business, oh, less than a month, probably, after the game's—you know, opens. So yes, of course, there will be lots of variety in bows, lots of variety, uh, in terms of, uh—whether it's damage, or range, and other things, uh, that will factor in to, you know, every type of weapon. Not just bows, and certainly not just swords.


#baby wheel

Q: Will Archers be able to kill the baby wheel?




Q: Will archers be more useful in defence situation, and weak in the battlefield, say, 1v1?

A: Well I think we've covered that. It depends, one, on the archers, and it depends how you want to look at weak. I mean, honestly, uh, 1v1, will the blackguard going against, you know, the best damage dealing melee character, uh, be in trouble? Well, sure, of course. Uh, on the other hand, will the Blackguard, 1 on 1, going against a mage who's geared, you know, ability-wise, uh, for taking sieges, will he be more effective? Yes, he'll be more effective 'cause his abilities are geared to kill other players. So, you know, we don't want these guys as a weak class, but we won't want them—obviously—as a class that can stealth, come out, one-shot ya, and then go back into stealth. And fortunately there's a huge gap, you know, between useless and OP, and that's where we're going.

Yeah, this is the same RPS question when we talk about any class. Like, is this class good at 1v1? Sometimes they're good at it. Sometimes they're bad at it. It depends on if they're in the positive side of the rock-paper-scissors arrangement or in the negative side. Some classes are going to destroy other classes, and those classes that are getting destroyed by the one class are going to destroy in turn other classes. And so it's not as if anyone is specifically great—and we're not even talking about just going out and soloing, because soloing is obviously, you know, kind of a niche thing that not everybody's going to be great at. But just when one guy catches you, and you—and one single enemy in the middle of the large fight runs up and starts attacking you, or even starts from range attacking you, you know, dealing with that situation where you're only—at the moment—concerned with how you're going to respond to a single attacker. There's going to be different relationships. And there's going to be different targets, to you're going to have to be careful about who you select as a target and who you specifically stay away from because you know if they get on you, you're going to be in trouble.



Q: Can you elaborate on camo? How will it be cast? What it'll look like, will the players be able to travel in camo? Similarities to — and differences to stealth.

A: Well, I mean, I think what you actually just asked highlights some of the differences in stealth. Uh, no, the idea in camo is you're not moving at full speed in camo. You know, if you want to move at full speed, you should be using stealth. You should be one of the classes that can go into the veil. In terms of what it'll look like, uh, you cannot camo—you should not be able—I hate to say cannot, but it will probably be a cannot—uh you cannot just be in the middle of a field, wearing, you know, bright gold armor, even if it's made out of leather, and hit a button, and go into camo. On the other hand, if you're wearing the appropriate armor. If you've got the things that were made by the crafters to help you in camo, and you're trying to blend into—whether it's the forest, or blend into snow, you'll be able to do that. And, again, I think the most important differences is absolutely to remember, this is not walking through the veil, or running through the veil. This is meant for the characters who want to hide in certain places. Maybe move around slowly among—within the same type of terrain, and is properly specced and geared for that. Again, if you're going out in your hot-pink dyed armor, you're not going to be able to blend really well on those grey rocks. It's just not going to work that way.


#archery mechanics

Q: If archer's can pull arrows from quivers, then line up the shot, then draw the bow back, and finally shooting. Can you elaborate on how that would translate into button presses. Do we press one ability button to trigger all those sequences automatically, or will some of the things be done manually?

A: Okay. So, right now we're working on, uh, putting our component system together in such a way that's it's modular enough that you can do either one of those. So the idea is that if you wanted to just walk around with your bow you can do that—obviously, you can walk around with just a sword. If you wanted to just nock an arrow, as in, get an arrow out of your quiver, put it on the string and hold it there—not even draw it—just walk around like that, that you could do that as a single action, as a single ability that has the components of the bow and the arrow and the process by which you load it and those are your components and that would be an ability. If you wanted to go through the rest of the steps and say, not only do I want to get the arrow out and put it on the string, but I also want to draw the bow and I also want to aim at somebody and I also want to fire, and I want to take all the components that it takes to do that and put them all into one ability, so all I have to do is push one button and it goes through the entire sequence. You could also do that. So I think allowing that flexibility will give us a lot of different play style options, just, like, sort of personal preference options in the way that you create your abilities. You know, do I want to make a button for, each, you know, loading each type of arrow, and then another button for drawing fast, or power draw, or whatever, and then do I want to make another ability for the way that I'm aiming at the target, and then I—you know—every time I use an ability I'm pushing three buttons. Or do I want to just make a bunch of these combinations of like, well, I like doing this combination over here, and then this combination, and then this combination, and then you have, you know, dozens of different combinations, or you know, more or less depending on how many different things you want to be able to do and how much flexibility you want. Um, but every button press is a full action that goes through all the things in a sequence. That's kind of something we want to leave up to you guys, because, either way, you know, you either have to make a whole lot of ability buttons for every possible conceivable combination, or make only a few combination things and then push three buttons every time you want to shoot an arrow. So neither one of those is something that we feel everybody is going to like, um, but one or the other or a mix of both is something that we kind of want to give to you and obviously test it both ways and see what comes out of it.

Devout Archetype Reveal Q&A[ | ]

10-02-2015 - The Devout Archetype Reveal

Category Q&A


#weapon choice

Q: The images show dual flails. Will this be valid option only for the Abbot, or will this be a choice for all classes?

A: The bottom line is, if we put in he mechanic that you can dual wield, certainly, like we've talked about for any of the classes, or even the archetypes, will you be able to dual wield if you're not an Abbot? Absolutely. But you won't have the special abilities, and that's the key. Can you pick up two flails? Absolutely. Why not? Will you be any good with them? Not as good as the class that has the abilities, or the components, or the styles that are designed for them. No different than if a mage picks up a sword. Can they swing a sword? Absolutely. Can they swing a staff? Absolutely. But the classes that have the components, those are the one who are going to be best at it.



Q: Will these guys be able to be specialized into a full tank with healing abilities?

A: Not a full tank, in that they won't have a lot of the same protection abilities and group defense abilities that actual tanks have, because tanks are a separate trio that we'll get into later. They can be fairly defensive, and any time you have a character that can heal, if they have a good amount of healing they can apply to themself, they can be fairly survivable, but that doesn't necessarily fulfill the full role of a tank, it just means that they're hard to kill.



Q: How long did it take to come up with the ability name "For blood to beer"?

A: Somewhat ironically, naming is one of the harder parts of actually doing a lot of these designs, because a lot of the mechanics you lay out in an earlier form, and go through and break them down into individual ability components, but then you have to go through and name everything, and naming a lot of the time is where you get a lot of the agonizing over trying to find the right words and phrasing and stuff. That is actually one of the parts of design that people tend to get hung up on, and tends to take more time than you'd think.



Q: What's the role of hybrid healer in RvR? They need to find groups.

A: Your hybrid healers are going to be either be, for a more offensively oriented group, might be your main healer. If you're really focused on just dealing as much damage as possible, these guys are going to contribute damage, so even if they're primarily healing focused in their activities, their inherent damage ability means that they will fit into a more offensively oriented group. In a more balanced group, they're probably going to fulfill more of the role of a secondary healer, you know when your main healer is getting focused, and has to focus on keeping themselves alive, or if they go down, or whatever, or if your group is taking a lot of damage, and you have to help support your main healer, increasing the healing output, you can switch from being offensive to being defensive, they can sort of fill in the gaps here and there. As sort of a secondary role in either doing damage or doing healing, so they help, you know, fill the gap that you might not otherwise have if you went with either a full healer or a full damage dealer.


#Blessed Crow

Q: What is the weapon called that the Blessed Crow uses?

A: I think they're talking about what he has in concept art, which is that he has a cauldron on a stick, hanging from a chain. There isn't a specific name for it, it's just a concept art piece of what that could look like. His main thing is that he has a cauldron which is something that he can carry around with him, and put down, and have multiples of, and sort of deploy in an arrangement, in an area, and do various things with. How he's going to carry that around, what the mechanism is, that's not a specific object or item or anything that we've created, that's just one of the concepts for how we're going to eventually deliver that in the game. We haven't really got that entirely sorted out. It's just a cool concept that we have right now.



Q: Since they're hybrids, will these classes ever be able to do as much damage as a full healer, or as much damage as a pure DPS, if they player desires?

A: My gut says no. I mean, if they were as powerful as a pure healer, or as powerful as a pure tank, and as great at healing as a pure healer, even if they fully specced, I think that that would take away from the role of the pure archetype.
Yeah, it sort of depends how you mean by that. If you mean over a duration, I would say no, but in specific instances, if they're trying to burst, if they have, like the abbot specifically has a bunch of stacking buffs and procs and things. So if he can get stacked up, he can do some pretty good either damage or healing over a short amount of time, but he can't sustain that the same way a pure healer or a pure DPS could.

It's a complicated question, because things such as the ability to regenerate your blood, assuming we go with the same mechanic, could also differ between the classes, so it's not simply looking at, okay if his heal can do 100 points over 30 seconds, and the other healer can do 100 points over 30 seconds, it is a more complicated. Thankfully, we can do more interesting things than simply look at one set of numbers, and go 'no these guys are equivalent', or 'one is weaker in one way, and weaker in the other way.' As always, it's about being a bit clever.


#Blessed Crow

Q: Looking at the Abbot and the Blessed Crow, the Abbot got quarterstaff skills. Is the Blessed Crow more mage/healer or fighter/healer?

A: The Abbot has a little bit more on the melee side of things. He's not exactly melee for DPS, because he does have smite and nukes as well. The Blessed Crow is more of a mage type, and less of a melee focus. It's more about the cauldrons and setting up your little deployables. It's a playstyle that a bunch of you are probably familiar with. Where you set things down, and make your arrangement of things, and cast spells on the cauldron to make the cauldron do stuff in an area, and have some interactions between them based on their proximity. So that's a little different. He has to focus specifically on that mechanic, whereas they Abbot doesn't have any deployables. He's just running around, hitting people and casting things, and has more of a diverse role.
And drink beer.

That is what's really important about this to keep in mind, folks, we told you before the Kickstarter, during the Kickstarter, after the Kickstarter, that we weren't going with mirrored classes. Now here's a perfect example, right?

Yeah, they're very different.

These three classes are in no way even close to being mirrored. These are classes with very different mechanics, obviously, and very different styles. And this is what you're going to see from us going forward. Not just with these folks, with other folks as well.



Q: Will there be spells that heal allies and damage enemies?

A: Of course


#Blessed Crow

Q: This is about the Blessed Crow. One of the sample runes is "corpse consuming brew". How will it decide which corpse to consume? Will we be able to manage the corpses chosen with a modifying components?

A: Right now the definition just states that it's consuming them, and it's based primarily on proximity. If you have a certain number of them within range, based on the number of them that are in the radius, it scales it's effect. There will probably be some mechanics that go into that. We'll see what modifiers we eventually implement. Right now the base effect of that is just that if they're in range it eats them all, and based on the number of them that it eats, it does an increase to the power of its effect.



Q: Just to be clear, these are hybrid healer/mages, and not healer/melee, correct?

A: Yes, Correct.



Q: Can the hybrid healer have any form of CC like Mez or Stun from Dark Age of Camelot?

A: We haven't gone down that path yet. Will any of these guys have crowd control abilities? We'll talk about that more as we get this class into development. Because it's a hybrid, I can say with about 100% degree of certainty, it's not going be one of the first classes we're going put into the game. So, could we add different abilities, some CC? It certainly is possible, but it is not something we're focused on yet.
These three specifically are not very control heavy because they already have to do damage, and they already have to do healing. They have a lot to do. They're also having to manage buffs and debuffs and control effects, that's going make them even more complicated. So they might get, you know, everybody will get a little bit of that, obviously, but probably not as heavy as some of the other classes we haven't got revealed yet.



Q: Will the devout players have to specialize into healing or damage? Can they be a jack of all trades? Or choose to focus on damage or healing?

A: Being hybrids, they sort of do a little bit of both. You can kind of orient yourself towards one or the other, since you are a hybrid, you need to be able to handle both of those. The Helbound is the one that goes the hardest in one direction or the other, because they are sort of a dual mode class, in that you can go into life mode and you can go into death mode, and you can do different things in each one, and swapping back and forth isn't necessarily always a great idea. So they tend to have a little bit more of that duality than the other ones. As this class, you are not meant to go one route or the other, you are supposed to be in between, you're supposed to be doing both things.
One of the things that people have asked us, and this really also started during the Kickstarter, was how can you make hybrids effective, right. Because people always say or complain, depending on which side of the argument you're on, that hybrids generally are not great classes in many, if not most, MMOs. And what Ben said here, that you should be going both, is really important, because that's one of the ways we can make them a viable class, right?

That does have a lot do with how to make hybrids good, because in the instance where you have hybrids that are just not as good at DPS and not as good at healing, if this the type of hybrid you're talking about, which we are, then you're just either a bad healer or a bad DPS, and why wouldn't you just pick a real DPS or a real healer? If you're able to do both of those things, and you're able to do them, more importantly, simultaneously, then you're not just picking one or the other. You're not just a poor version of something else. You're able to actually do more, and that makes up for that you're not doing as much.

Exactly, and that's really important for you guys to keep in mind, whether it's for this hybrid class, or other hybrids that we'll certainly be talking about over the lifetime of this game.



Q: Will the hybrid healers get normal heal spells like pure healers, or only be able to heal with specialty abilities when damaging enemies?

A: They have regular healing abilities. You don't have to be damaging someone to heal, there are more abilities in these classes than in most of the pure healers. There's an exception to that but we won't talk about it yet because we haven't revealed healers yet. For the most part though, you will have a mix of both. So, if you just see someone who's damaged, you can generally just heal them with just a heal, you don't need an enemy to be present to damage them to cause the healing to happen. But that is a way that we can incorporate, as we said, that sort of duality, if you attack an enemy you heal nearby allies, and things like that. Those are a lot of the type of things that will help them do both things at the same time.


#aoe cap
#aoe healing

Q: Are there going to be AoE healing spells, and if so will they have a target cap?

A: We've been asked that so many times. Of course there will be AoE spells, and what we've said on the forums, and said even during the Kickstarter, as of now, there are no plans to cap in the way that other games have capped, and therefore look, there will be some limit on the amount of power, obviously, that can come out from the amount of power that you put into a spell. You can't say well I'm going to cast this tiny AoE and it's going to affect 3,000 people.
There specifically are more stringent limits on this when it comes to healing because of certain problems. If you have a heal that is just an AoE heal that heals everybody, the bigger your group is, the more effective that heal is. It can't work that way. Damage, kind of can work that way, because then it's worse against the zerg, but it's worse for the zerg for a group fighting against them because it scales more the more people it hits. That's generally going to wipe out big groups, but something that heals big groups is going to be problematic. So you have mechanics like, the abbot has an ability, already, that says it splits the amount of healing across the number of people that it heals, so the more people it hits, the more the power is divided among them, so it can't just provide an unlimited amount of heal that scales with the number of people.

There are also things that we'll talk about down the road that I think will work very well with AoE. I think we've mentioned some of it with healer vision. Ben: Yeah, we've talked about it here are there. We'll get into more detail on healer-specific things when we get into the actual healers


#Blessed Crow
#item dependency

Q: Will the Blessed Crow need cooking-type ingredients to make different brews?

A: They are kind of item dependent, in the same way that the Abbot is going to be a little bit beer dependent. They're going to have to have some item dependencies. We haven't gotten into the details yet.



Q: When will you update the Lore Becoming stories for these classes?

A: Update them? That means I've got to write them! At some point, certainly, each one of these classes, whether it's Max or I, or somebody else who will write, certainly, Becoming stories, you know, for each of the classes. But as you can imagine, not a priority right now.

Scout Archetype Reveal Q&A[ | ]

10-30-2015 - The Scout Archetype Reveal

Category Q&A



Q: Regarding the deployable Wisp, can you describe a bit about the independent control between the scout and the Wisp? Will it be feasible to control both at once? And utilize the class effectively with the class being split apart into two forms – so to speak?

A: Okay, so this is a little bit leaning on some of the tech that we’re gonna be developing for Spirit Mages, which by the way, is part of why spirit classes in the stretch goal order were before these classes. So, essentially what you’ll do is you’ll transfer your control from your main character to the Wisp itself, and then you’ll basically be playing the game as the Wisp and you can use the mode ability to kind of toggle back and forth. But you can only control, sort of one at once. See, it’s not like a pet where you’re actually running around as a character and then using pet commands to give pet orders and have it run around separately from yourself. You’re actually playing from the perspective of the Wisp, which can travel fairly far from where the player’s body is, and in this case, it’s actually from the lantern. So you can actually go to a location, put down your lantern, and then leave – then transfer to the Wisp that’s inside of the lantern and then run around that way; keeping your character much safer. Then, uh, and I think it’s even mentioned in the abilities, if your character were to die for some reason, but the lantern is still there and the Wisp is still there, you’re basically fine even though your character is dead. So there’s a very strong disconnect between these two things and they’re actually kind of separate entities. And the players sort of incorporeal control into the game world is being transferred between one thing and the other but they’re actually two separate things.



Q: Talk about rewards and progression for scouting.

A: Scouting is going to be very different from how other classes work in terms of rewards; because they are not going around killing people. And so a lot of the things to do with damage and healing and stuff are not generally going to apply. But they’re still using abilities. As our progression system is generally usage based and has a lot of properties tied to the success or failure of those usages. A lot to do with the context, y’know, if you’re using something in an important situation versus an unimportant situation off in the middle of nowhere, that’s sort of different. So, because you’re able to play an active role as a scout you’re not going to get rewarded for just standing around, idling, and looking at things. You’re going to have to actually use your abilities. So some of these abilities talk about marking things, going out and taking note of specific targets and then being able to go and report those back and contribute to the intelligence of the realm on what’s in an area. That sort of thing will get you points in terms of the progression system, but just sort of standing around looking at things, even if there is a lot going on, but you’re not actively doing anything, probably will not be a very rewarding thing for you to pursue.

So one of the interesting ways to look at this class is, we said from the beginning that we’re not gonna have PvE progression right? This is an RvR centric game. RvR focused game. In a weird way, you could actually look at a scout, with a lot of its behaviors, as almost a PvE class style because you don’t have to actually fight other players right. So I think there will be a lot of players who might, a lot of potential players who might actually be interested in playing this class even though they are not great at what is the center of RvR – which is combat. You know, if you like running around in a world. If you like scouting and looking for other players but not, maybe, kind of think you suck at killing them – this is a really interesting class to look at and consider. Because it doesn’t require you to go and to be great at combat. It doesn’t require you to worry about your bars like you would for the other classes. You don’t have to worry about positionals, reactives, knowing everything that your enemy has; because you’re not generally fighting them in that way. So, I think there may be some appeal here for players who have been looking at this game and going, well I’m interested in the races, I’m interested in the lore, but I’m just not very good at RvR combat or PvP combat.

It could not be a concern that you’re not very good. It could be a concern that you don’t like that confrontational sort of situation. You’re just worried about, you don’t like people ganking you, you don’t like feeling like people are picking on you or trying to ruin your experience or whatever; but if you’re just having this sort of ambient sort of walk around and you’re trying to be careful. And if you die it’s not necessarily a big deal to you, because you’re not competing with other people directly. You’re not – it’s not a you or them, you win you lose, it’s more of like – well I’ll see how much stuff I can find and your achievement is basically, I find more stuff before I get destroyed and then I re-emerge and start doing it again. Or I move to a new area. That experience is very different and so is not something that’s very similar to a lot of other MMO PvP experiences. So it might be something that attracts people who thought, I’m gonna play this game as a crafting game because crafting is, even in an RvR world, it’s a crafting experience and it’s not directly having this conflict. A lot of scouts are also probably going to want to avoid that conflict and just want to go around and scout. So that could be an alternative means to play this game as a less conflict-based character.

You’re also going to get lots of pats on your head from other players when you do something right. So it’s a really, maybe a very interested way, again, for people who aren’t interested in that confrontational style or, again, think they just can’t keep up with the more hardcore players; but still want to feel a part of the world. Just like crafting. Still want to contribute. Still want to work with their friends in a guild who might actually be more interested in RvR. They could still join them, help out, and sometimes be really useful. Because, like everything else in our progression system, if you do well as a scout, you’re going to get recognized by the realm regardless of whether or not you kill anyone because, frankly, killing isn’t your number one focus.


#horizontal progression
#power gap

Q: Can you elaborate a bit on how gameplay might differ between a neophyte scout and a high ‘level’ scout? What makes a year 5 Scout better than a day 1 Scout?

A: If you look at the horizontal system. This is one of the areas where we can allow a little bit more verticality. We could, for example, take the range for the Wisps. If at the end of the day, we said that the Wisps range from the lantern was a little more vertical than our other skills, it’s not really a big deal. It’s not really something that’s going to unbalance the game. It’s not something that really, well can’t turn the tide in RvR. On the other hand, certain skills we would not want to do that to. If you have effects, or when you have your abilities that have effects on active RvR and active combat, we would want to stay horizontal. So I think these highly specialized classes give us a really interesting way to introduce a little verticality, if we want to, but also introduce a whole bunch of other horizontal base skills that are a little bit more fun, a little bit more useful; without worrying about them unbalancing combat – which is still the heart of the RvR game.

I think this archetype, even though it’s more narrow than you would think of a normal class with its varying trees and branches to specialize into, there is still specialization within scouting as we were sort of saying. You can have your evasiveness and how difficult you are to detect, you can have your speed and how quickly you can cover areas, you’re going to have different things like we’re talking about traps and sabotage and stuff you can actually do that affect enemies. And so there’s going to be different ways that you can think about how you’re playing your character. Do you want to be just a total passive, evasive character that people don’t detect and you sort of don’t even want to run into other people – or do you want to be the sort of character is either part of a group or is off of a group but operating in an area where combat is taking place and you’re kind of contributing towards fights that happen? You can get better at these different things with, possibly, some tradeoffs. Maybe your abilities are stronger to go out and help your group but you can’t last as long. Or maybe you can last a really long time but you can’t really do a whole lot besides go out and scout things. So there will be some horizontal progression as far as your diversity of different things you can learn to do and things you focus on. Because you do have abilities and your different abilities will do different things. Which ones you progress and which ones you subsequently unlock will be different based on your choices.


#group viability

Q: Group vs Solo play. How do you see Scouts fitting into a group? Are they only for solo play?

A: This is probably one of the least combat focused roles in the game. It’s like putting a crafter in your group. There are reasons that you would want to do it but your group stated objective has to be driven by that. If you’re going out there and you’re just going out to kill people, you don’t necessarily need a lot of intelligence. If you’re going into a siege battle and you already know where the enemies are because they’re at their fort or their keep or whatever, you’re going there to just fight them, you don’t necessarily need a lot of intelligence. But, in order to determine how many enemies are at that keep before hand, you might have scouting parties that go out and, okay, how much defenses do they have, how many resources do they have to repair the damage that we’re going to do to them and attrition them down. Stuff like that. Or if you’re trying to set up caravan interruption, going out and destroying caravans of enemies, you want to find where those caravans are, and when they’re running, and how long it will take them to get from place to place; so your group can detect these things. And scouts are going to be much better than normal characters at covering distance and finding things over the large open world that we have, to find out where you’re going to need to go. So having a scout in your group if you’re on a roam, might be really really important. But if you’re just in the middle of a siege – not as important as maybe having another siege mage.

When we start talking about how every class interacts with The Depths it’s going to be a whole other thing cause it’s going to be a crazy place, there’s going to be a lot of things going on, and scouting The Depths is going to be possibly a very important thing for you to do; because there’s going to be a lot of surprises that you won’t necessarily find out about otherwise.

Character Mechanics


Q: Before we mentioned some components that specifically target ‘living targets’; do Specters, Arisen, and Dullahan fall into the dead category?

A: Yes, they are dead. They are undead. There are some things that are specifically targeted to corpses of things, that are on the ground and don’t have any gameplay implications that you can’t do to an undead creature, but a lot of the things that have. This thing just has to be dead, probably will apply to things whether they’re re-animated or not. So there will be some overlap there but probably not everything.

Fireballs and swords won’t care.


#path system

Q: With a class being dedicated to gathering information, what sort of information will be able to be gathered to make this class worth having over other classes?

A: Oh, lots of things. I mean, again, if you are going on in an eight-man and you’re looking for other groups to fight or want to avoid other groups, being able to send a guy out in the distance who moves very quickly, can move hidden, who can really give you the intelligence that can save you a lot of time. Or an ambush over a hill, for example, having them – really handy. Same thing in the depths. There’s going to be so many things you can do and as Ben mentioned as well, looking at sieges, getting behind enemy lines, helping to disrupt things. These guys are not just about gathering information. That’s their number one focus. They also have other things in their arsenal. They’re not just about gathering intel. That’s what they’re really really good at but they will have other things they can do as well, they have to.

You can sort of look at this utility being their secondary role. So they’re not exactly a Support character or a debuffing character or something where that’s their main thing. They really are about going out and finding things and moving quickly and discovering information and reporting information back. But that’s not all they do. It’s like how we’ve talked about with some of our other classes. They have to have a main focus and then they’ll also have some other things that they can also do. Classes aren’t necessarily, in this case, and like we’ve talked about if you’ve read the recent Unveiled Newsletter that we just released talking about how we’re changing our archetypes, this is a good example of that; of characters having a sort of multifaceted interest to them. Where they sort of have a primary thing that they’re interested in, but that’s not necessarily comprehensive of all the things that they can do.

That’s one of the things that’s really important. We’ve touched on it now in multiple reveals as well when we talked about the change in the Path System. Being able to have a character like this, a class like this, that is more tightly focused – is a really good thing. But tightly focused doesn’t mean you can only do one thing. It just means that you have fewer number of things that you can do but those things can be different. It can be column A, B, C, D, E, and F as far as we want it, but that total number of abilities was still down. Was still smaller than other classes. And that’s one of the reasons that I think this approach that we’re taking now is going to work out really well for us.

It’s really just that you can’t be divergent anymore. Previously we were going to allow you to be so diverse in your choices that you were going to have like, a Helbound for example, that like this is going to be a total healer character, this is a total damage character; that sort of breadth isn’t the sort of thing we have in our current builds anymore. It’s more of, y’know, you have primary things that you can do, you have secondary things that you can do; but at the end of the day, in this case, you’re still a Scout. So whether you’re a Scout that’s focused on interacting with group and combat mechanics or a Scout that’s focused on going out and moving over a large area and being hard to detect, you’re still a Scout. So that sort of focus, that sort of role, and having that sort of strong ..
Sorry, a bunch of guys are looking at us. Tyler is there anything going on? You keep looking at us.

So apparently you said eight-man and chat lost it's shit.

Of course it did. I should have said nine. I’ve said ten before. I think I’ve said seven too.

Unveiled Newsletter Q&A[ | ]

Unveiled Newsletter #1 Q&A[ | ]

08-21-2014 - Unveiled Newsletter #1

Category Q&A

Character Creation


Q: How will every race/gender be different?

A: Every Race will have Banes and Boons and Stats. Genders are not confirmed for all races, but those with genders may also have advantages and disadvantages in character creation that offer further differentiation among the races. In Camelot Unchained, your choice of faction, race, etc., will matter a lot, as there are no mirrored races or classes.



Q: Can every Race be every Class?

A: Currently, within a single Realm, every race can be every class. Keep in mind that because there are no mirrored classes, each existing class will be unique and tailored to fit into the lore and theme in keeping with that Realm. In other words, you won t have a fire-based mage class living peacefully within the Tuatha Dé Danann forests.


#holy trinity

Q: Will there be the usual trinity of classes?

A: In an extended sense, yes. Tanks are not simply meat shields for mitigation as they are in some games, because it s not all about raiding in a rinse/wash/repeat process trying to get that elusive piece of armor that drops 0.0001% of the time every day but Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday! Healers can diversify, and can be very useful in combat even when they are not simply healing. DPS can experiment with abilities, and they do not need to conform to a norm to be useful in battle.



Q: I know you said no PvE progression, but will there be PvE?

A: No PvE grind for leveling purposes, but there will be other forms of player vs environment, such as chopping down a tree or mining for ore. All crafting, housing, and fighting is contributing to your realm and the global warfare. This means that there is no PvE leveling in the traditional sense, but there are plenty of things to do when you are not busy burning some enemy s structure to the ground.


#friendly fire

Q: Will there be friendly fire?

A: In certain very specific instances, yes, maybe, or perhaps no. In some open combat that could be a positive dynamic, but inside a city or keep it could be more problematic than fun. We will see what fits best to maximize that fun and avoid griefing. Please keep in mind that FF is not confirmed and even if it makes the cut, it will be highly limited.

Unveiled Newsletter #2 Q&A[ | ]

09-25-2014 - Unveiled Newsletter #2

Category Q&A



Q: Will we be able to get out of NPC boats early, or will we have to ride all the way to the drop-off?

A: This is a mostly seamless open world, which means that there is no zoning in the traditional sense; only internal zones for us to split things up (The Depths , starting cities, etc.) for the engine so there are minimal loading screens. There might be ways to decrease the ride time if you have a port on your property, are a water mage, or similar things. Who says you won t be able to jump off and swim? None of these have been fully explored yet, so take them only as my thoughts!



Q: Will caravans be sharable by more than one person to move goods, like can I share one with someone and make it more powerful and safe?

A: If you are asking if one caravan can hold goods for multiple people, then yes. You can definitely expect there to be ways for you to conscript someone else to haul your stuff from point A to point B for you if you don't want to do it yourself, and there may be a way to group up with a bunch of friends who all want to transport stuff together, and assemble a caravan of the appropriate size.

Game Development


Q: When will we see a new approach to board discussions at large? To clarify, more dev-driven discussions with hard, important Q&A, and less non-stop speculation run amok? Just one or two topics a week would be awesome.

A: At this point in development, you can see from our PAT checklist that we're pretty full up on things to work on, so there isn't a whole lot of new something to think about forum feedback we're trying to gather for now. Once we get our checklist finished and start running more frequent tests, you can expect more surveys and a higher frequency of directed forum discussions. We need the ability to modify/test things on our end without committing to something now that ends up needing to change. That said, I am already planning some other forms of sharing that might satisfy your hunger for dev info! Also, keep in mind that as we get closer to Alpha, there will be more discussions started by our developers in the Something to Think About (StTA) threads.

Game Development


Q: For people that play odd hours, (outside the daytime EST) yet have lots of time, when do you think, or do you think, we could be an asset to do IT? Or, when do you think semi- or round-the-clock IT testing could be done? (question applies to when client is up, of course).

A: We are really appreciative of those who are in IT right now, or have been from the beginning! For now, ideal candidates are those who can come into the client during business hours EDT to do impromptu tests on-demand when we need a quick response. However, the servers are open to IT just about 24 hours a day, so there s testing going on all the time, and they are always jumping on to help out as their schedule allows.

Game Development


Q: Do you keep a running list of the forum ideas that you think have potential to be implemented in the game? Would we ever be able to see/discuss such a list?

A: I would say that the forum ideas inspire internal conversation when the topic is timely to what we are working on at the moment. We have a search feature, and a very deliberately designed forum, so our developers can go right to the current or old areas they want to see when those systems start being actively designed. As to the second part about such a list or conversation, no way! :P

Unveiled Newsletter #3 Q&A[ | ]

10-30-2014 - Unveiled Newsletter #3

Category Q&A


#ability creation

Q: I have a question about how abilities will work. I know you guys talked about it plenty, but I am curious, will the abilities be a predetermined template as in- all viking warriors have the ability Slash!. Without putting any customization into it is a simple auto attack filler type of ability, but with some customization the ability could evolve into a bleed, a leg attack, and disarm, or a charge up burst ability. Or is it where you literally make an ability, with a tool given to the players where the damage is predetermined depending on certain variables. Such as the utility you give the ability, the cast time or cd of the ability, the bonus damage effects, poison/bleed. If this has already been answered could someone let me know? I don't think it has been answered this specifically before (probably because you guys don't know yet!) but if your leaning in a particular direction I would love to hear about it.

A: We are pretty excited about our combat system and the myriad ways you can customize your attacks. We don t have an auto attack planned, or anything as simple as that! Attacks are broken down into four basic types of ability components; Primary (weapon), Secondary (way to use it like slash ), and optional Modifiers (such as body target, range, etc.). You can even have Modal Components (like stances), which we haven't talked as much about. This is a pretty complex system! It will be best to give your abilities a lot of thought before you even engage in combat, and consider things like how you like to attack. You will be able to create very specific abilities to match your play style. Customize away!

Groups and Guilds

#small group

Q: Are there plans in place to promote small man action (4-5 man) instead of a mindless zerg, going keep to keep, dominating everything by shear numbers? If so, can you elaborate?

A: When you play Camelot Unchained, if the only successful way to enjoy yourself is to join a large zerg, or wait and hope that more players log on so you can enjoy our content, we will have failed miserably as a development team. There are obviously various times of day on a server where the populations could encourage zerg-based play, but we hope that won t happen often. This is why we are designing Camelot Unchained to have enough carrots and sticks so that zerg-based play won t be the most efficient way for players to succeed in our game. The key for us is to have goal-based gameplay, with enough options that are spread around the map, which will reward the Realm that competes smarter using smaller, coordinated groups. Smaller groups will also have CC options which will enable them to have a chance against a larger group, should they encounter one as they to look for resources, scout the land, or escort crafters/caravans safely to a destination, to name just a few examples. Solo play also won't require you to just spend all your time seeking another player to fight. The point is, no matter how you want to play, Camelot Unchained should enable players to find meaningful things to do in an RvR setting without having to resort to zerging for profit."

Land and Map


Q: With the world broken into many islands, will individual islands be large enough to naturally and reasonably support an interesting variety of sweeping terrain features such as rivers, mountains, deserts, wild dense forests?

A: Very much so. Islands have varying sizes, and keep in mind they don't always stay disconnected. They come together into larger land masses that will feel more like continents, or break back down into islands again as stabilizers are built and destroyed. There will be a variety of experiences in terms of traversing distance by land and sea. Terrain is an important feature, and really shows off the different climates that the Realms prefer. You could almost say that the Realms create their own environments...hmm ;)

Game Development

#spell effects

Q: In addition to fireball effects that have already been touted, what other cool spell effects might we see planned (estimated, no promises and such) for pre-alpha testing?

A: Good question! You have seen the fire dart, earth dart, and water dart effects in some of our screenshots on the website. I highly recommend that you look below at the screenshot of our night battles, where you can see a kaleidoscope of color and shooting particle effects, all done by Mike Crossmire. It is a beautiful and deadly vision of color, as casting, healing, and combat all show off for you visually. One of my favorite effects is the healing fountain, which throws sparkling green tendrils into the air in a circle of aoe healing. In our Tech Central section, you can see a huge wall of water, towering in front of the Viking fighter archetype of the Frost Giant. There are a firewall and earthwall in the current build as well. When you see a St rm raise her hand and a massive inferno appears in front of you, remember the phrase don t stand in the fire !

Unveiled Newsletter #4 Q&A[ | ]

11-26-2014 - Unveiled Newsletter #4

Category Q&A



Q: Will Mark answer questions concerning weapons this time? If so, I´d like to know:

  • If possible pole arms in CU will be significantly longer than compared to the tiny toothpicks of DAoC?
  • If unusual weapons like the bardiche are planned?
  • If you consider to implement spear & shield tanks?

A: While I can t say much on the look of them in Camelot Unchained (as there is no art yet!) we plan to have polearms, and possibly some unusual weapons as well. Keep in mind that all our weapons are somewhat historically based, so don t expect to be wielding a body-sized 5-piece sword made of comets. However, there will be fantasy elements on display, like lighting your sword on fire! We are looking at things like the guisarme and fachard as possible ideas, so we are keeping our options open and thinking outside the box. In answer to your last question, we would like to implement spear and shield tanks, yes!


#fourth realm

Q: Do you have any new race ideas in development or for now we ll stick with these? Is there a possibility for 4th realm in the future? (going way overboard here)

A: We certainly do have new race ideas! The best place to look for those is our Something to Think About section of the forums. While these are very much still only a possibility for the game, we have some great stories about the Phouka (a horse/man race), and the Veilwalkers (a possible stealth class of mysteriousness). We have also internally discussed the Orcadians (called Orcs by their foes). Mark and Max always have the creative wheels turning. Don t forget that the Gargoyle, among others, still needs a Becoming story too :) As for a 4th realm, that is a very unlikely addition to the game. You never want to say never around this studio (or in a world where Veilstorms are common), but I wouldn t expect that manner of change to the game.



Q: With letting in so many future players in at this stage, how much has this different rout change what gets programmed in what order? For example, I get the distinct feeling that stability is far more important to you at this stage then it would be otherwise. Is this a good thing, bad thing, or it is what it is?

A: Keep in mind that we have (at least) two different branches of our code running on our servers. Our Wyrmling server is the most stable build, and is currently intended to be used for testing by our Alpha Backers. It is only updated once we have a build that has passed through a lot of play-testing by our Internal Testers, and is only available during set testing times. The Hatchery build is far less stable, but we like to keep it running 24×7, so our developers can test new and wondrous (and sometimes scary) things on it. While we don t break Hatchery on purpose, its stability is a lot less important to us and to our Internal Testers. It goes down at times, has weird things happening (we have some interesting screenshots we can share at some point), and sometimes, well, it is just very cool. Our IT folks can gauge the progress of the game, and really be involved in the game s development at a very early stage. Things change quickly, and it is exciting to see!

Overall, our programming team is focused on creating solid, relatively bug-free code (no code of this nature is ever bug-free at launch). While that is said a lot by developers, both our Alpha and IT testers can attest to how stable the game has been the vast majority of the time. Both Mark and Andrew have spoken a lot about our strict code review policy, which, while it has slowed down the game s development, has resulted in an engine which has already shown that it can handle the crush of 2K players in a tiny world space, even though we are still a year and a half from launch!


#system req

Q: Many of us will upgrade our computers or buy new ones before launch. I often read people giving advice that games don t really take advantage of newer, high end CPUs ( you don t need more than an i5? etc.). Will this be true for CU too?

A: It s too early to give a definitive answer on the high-end benefits yet, but if you are a P.A.T.s player, you can see that we have minimum requirements to play, and those will evolve over time until launch. However, the requirements shouldn t be of great concern, even if you don t have a bleeding-edge system. We have been very clear regarding our intent for our game to run on a wide variety of CPUs and GPUs. We are NOT going to require that people have the latest and greatest computer, along with a Titan Black, or the best possible internet connection in your country. Now, what we do recommend is that none of our Backers run out to the store right this second to buy a system specifically to see all the best sparklies and effects of Camelot Unchained. Put off your purchase as long as you can, so you can get a better deal on your technology. As always, the newer the better for any game like ours.


#physical items

Q: Once CSE begins selling physical items via the store like T-shirts, will the profit from selling those items count towards the stretch goals? For example, if you sell a T-shirt for $20 and profit $5 from that, will that $5 go towards the funding tracker?

A: Mark has said from the beginning of the Kickstarter days that a portion of the profits from the T-shirts, and other unnamed physical items, will go towards developing the game. The rest of the profit will help us continue to make more T-shirts (and any other cool swag that might happen), as well as help us handle returns or other unexpected expenses regarding the store. I m hoping for a Dragonwhale plushie myself, though I think I m alone in that wish.



Q: I m quite the lore buff myself, and would like to see a page on the website that teases some of the different areas you guys have planned for the game (concept art in all its glory). Would you consider creating a page like this?

A: I m going to tease you by mentioning our P.A.T.s checklist, which is more tech-related in general, but includes several vision documents that are being written for classes and character models. Notice that we are focused on character art right now, and less on environmental art during our Pre-Alpha Testing. However, one day, when it s time for us to work on environmental art, I m sure Tyler could be bribed into sharing something. We do have a wallpaper, fan art, and a concept art section on the website for you to indulge in!



Q: According to trusty Wikipedia, Medraut is Welsh for Mordred. Will this character make further appearances in the Lore as a Mordred-like character, or is he just a one-off character for the sake of exposition?

A: Anything is possible.

Unveiled Newsletter #5 Q&A[ | ]

12-23-2014 - Unveiled Newsletter #5

Category Q&A



Q: Which classes (actual classes, not archetypes) have been confirmed so far? Everything seems to be a "concept" so far and might be changed. Can we expect some information on the first few classes before Christmas?

A: Lets take a look at the word Archetype, because that might help clear up some misconceptions. Among other things, Wikipedia tells us it means forms which embody the fundamental characteristics of a thing," or a "'pattern,' 'model,' or 'type.'" There will be one archetype per class per realm. Right now we are looking at Mage, Healer, Support, Archer, and Fighter as Archetypes, which typify what we want in our classes without yet having a vision document or specific details of what encompasses them.

We have confirmed HelBound as a class, and very recently we revealed the Drengr document, with lots of details on the Viking Warrior class. We also revealed the Path System, which should help clarify some of the directions you can take that Warrior class. It has been a busy and very exciting few months! I am looking forward to our Arthurian Mage vision document, which is likely to be next, for those caster lovers. I know you hate to hear it, but everything is evolving, and will continue to do so until we are satisfied that it is the best fit for the game (and may even evolve after launch, if necessary!). We don t want to create fully-fleshed, 100% detailed classes (beyond vision documents) until the ability system framework is in place, which you will see in P.A.T. #3.
We all want the classes to be cool, and here at CSE we hope you will continue to give feedback that helps us to achieve that!



Q: There will possibly be a global/realm/island/region chats for players realm coordination? If not, why not? -- And what about custom chats groups?

A: Chat is a very flexible thing, and will be very customizable. Realm chat currently exists in the P.A.T.s, as well as global chat, but this will be expanding for the final game. There might not be pre-built global chat but you will be able to form your own channels for small groups, regions, friends, or whatever strikes your fancy to enable you to have multiple ways of interacting socially. Of course, this is strictly within your own Realm ;)

As for chat outside the game, you might already be a part of our Trillian/Pidgin XMPP chat, which right now is for Internal testers but will be open to all players eventually. This is what you see on the front page of our website! You will be able to log in to those out-of-game chat channels as yourself and as your character for in-game chat when you are actually playing the game.

Game Development

#coding process
#unit testing

Q: How long does it take to build whole client & server (Rebuild all on "All.sln")? Do you use unit testing to test elementary things?

A: It takes about 6 or 7 minutes to rebuild with speed! As for your question about unit testing, we don t, actually. The process has a bit more redundancy, to make sure things are thoroughly checked. The programming team is a very cohesive unit that works as a whole organism, geared toward building the game. After our programmers finish coding, we test in the office, after which each programmer submits code reviews of their work to get feedback from each other and streamline things. After the reviews, the code is submitted to our cutting-edge test build on the Hatchery server, where we get feedback from our Internal testers, any final bugs are corrected, and finally it is put into Wyrmling for all of the Community!


#extender pack

Q: What is CSE's current vision of an "extender pack"? Why is it being used instead of "expansion"? I ask because I am looking at getting all "expansions" for free by purchasing it with my founders' points. I am curious if they are the same thing or something completely separate.

A: This is a good question, and one we haven't gone into much detail about. Extender Packs are additions to Camelot Unchained that add to the experience of playing, and are free to all who are paying a subscription already. We want to make sure you get all the new goodies as we make more, and as a thank you for supporting us each month. What will they be? New weapon types, new path options for classes? We can t say, yet.

Expansions are a different thing altogether. Expansions are new content to the game that supplements or are an addition to the game on a larger scale. These represent a significant amount of time and/or resources from our team to create, and will have an additional cost associated with them, which we will do our best to price attractively.
We always have to be mindful of how this will impact the balance of the game for those who choose not to get the expansion. All of this will be considered before we undertake any expansions. One thing at a time, let s worry about launch first!

Unveiled Newsletter #6 Q&A[ | ]

08-21-2014 - Unveiled Newsletter #1

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Unveiled Newsletter #7 Q&A[ | ]

08-21-2014 - Unveiled Newsletter #1

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Newsletters and Updates

  1. Piercing the Veil #1
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  6. Piercing the Veil #6
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  8. Bring Out Your Devs Part 1
  9. Bring Out Your Devs Part 2
  10. Unveiled Newsletter #1
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  12. Unveiled Newsletter #3
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  14. Unveiled Newsletter #5
  15. Unveiled Newsletter #6
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