This post is meant to explain the philosophy behind the changes found in Beta v11 and why they were made. This isn’t mandatory to read by any means, but some people might find it interesting and it might answer some questions you might have. You can find the patch notes here.
The most significant change in this patch is a full overhaul of the crafting system, specifically regarding artifacts. This was by far the weakest and least interesting aspect of the game, and there was very little we could do to fix that without revamping the whole system. Now we have removed “Venturing” from the blacksmith and removed “Augmenting” from the enchanter.
The enchanter’s “Enchanting” feature now requires a new type of item, crafting materials, in addition to resources/power. You’ll learn more about these materials by reading the patch notes, but the gist of this system is that there are over 250 crafting materials to collect. Some are common, some are rare, and some are called “legendary” which are extremely difficult to obtain. Each material is capable of adding a different property to your artifact and is consumed when used. Common materials are… well, common enough that you should always have enough to enchant your artifacts with basic stats (examples include attack, max health, and defense).
Now, rare materials are a little different. These provide some more advanced properties such as increased resource gains, more loot found in treasure chests, or a chance to inflict negative status conditions on on your enemies. Therefore, we had to add 28 new artifact properties to the game which is absolutely huge and really helps to diversify the artifacts you can find. Many of these properties synergize very nicely with each other or your creatures’ abilities, and I’m very excited to see what kind of combinations everyone can come up with using these new properties. This also makes combat feel more dynamic because your enemies can spawn with these properties as well, so you might encounter an enemy that can inflict your creatures with a status condition you weren’t expecting.
Legendary materials are extremely difficult to find, and with good reason: they all grant your creatures powerful new abilities or status conditions. Notice that I didn’t say they replace your creatures’ abilities - that’s because ability replacement is gone. All of these artifact properties now grant their abilities to your creature in addition to that creature’s current ability. Once again, this system can create some very complex synergy among your creatures and makes creature customization far deeper. Legendary materials are all found in different areas - some can only be found in chests, some are only received from duty rewards, some are only found in breakable objects, etc. More materials of all rarities will be added to the game over time, along with new artifact properties.
Since there are so many different materials you can find, you might be worried about the random factor - what happens if you NEVER find the material you’re looking for? That’s where the enchanter’s new “Transmuting” ability comes in. Transmuting allows you to convert your crafting materials into entirely different crafting materials at random. So, let’s say you have far too many White Ambers (+life defense) and want some Flat Whetstones (+attack) instead. You could transmute your White Ambers and have a chance to obtain the Flat Whetstones you’re looking for. The higher the transmuted material’s rarity is, the more materials you’ll receive from it.
As for the enchanter’s “Disenchanting” ability: nothing has really changed there except for some nice polish to the user interface. The same goes for the blacksmith’s “Forging” ability. However, the blacksmith’s “Salvage” ability has changed a little bit. Instead of giving you resources for salvaged artifacts, it will now give you crafting materials. You’ll receive more materials from artifacts that have more stat slots filled, and the rarer the properties on the salvaged artifact, the higher the chance that you’ll receive rare materials as well.
The blacksmith can now also “Reforge” your artifacts, which allows you to randomly re-roll the stat values of your properties. For example, if you have a charm with a +36 Death Defense property that can roll a value between 30 and 50, you could reforge it a few times to hopefully increase the stat. This also allows you to “level up” your artifacts because the possible range that a property can roll is based on your character’s level. So if you find an artifact when you are level 5, you could potentially reforge it again at level 20 and it will roll a stat value for a level 20 character.
If you have any questions about the new crafting system, you should visit the library. It has been updated to help you understand this new system in great detail.
Philosophy: Rituals and Resources
Another issue that our players identified is that certain resources are far more useful than others at certain parts of the game, and power is pretty much useless all the time. This has been remedied by making all rituals cost a certain amount of power, and by making it substantially more expensive to craft artifacts. The values and types of resources used for almost everything in the game have been revised as well and should now feel much more balanced.
In addition, players felt that rituals stopped mattering after a certain point in the game, particularly after you have unlocked all of the castle upgrades. With the new crafting system, a ritual is now required to apply a legendary material to an artifact which should increase the amount of concurrent rituals you use at higher levels.
A lot of other changes are included in this patch that add some heavy polish to the game. The inventory menu has been redesigned to allow you to filter your items for more efficient access. In addition, the menu system has been reworked to be a lot less frustrating. For example, after disenchanting an artifact, that same artifact will stay selected even if its name changed as a result of the disenchantment.
Another great addition to the game is that certain wings and corridors of the castle are no longer accessible until you build the proper upgrade. The decorations, NPCs, doorways, and even floor layouts all change after you complete certain upgrades which should give you the feeling that you really are building your own castle, and not simply unlocking doors to rooms that have been there the whole time.
In addition, you can now sacrifice a creature particle from the particle menu after your character reaches level 30. Doing so will significantly increase the chance of that particle’s creature spawning in the next realm you visit. This is particularly useful later in the game when you’ve unlocked several creature tiers and it is difficult to find three of the same creatures that you want to diffuse. It also allows you to play the game a little more strategically - for example, if you are leveling up some new creatures, you could sacrifice a particle belonging to a creature that is a little easier to kill (like a Brim Smith, since it doesn’t have a combat-oriented ability).
Thanks to everyone who contributed suggestions and reported bugs for this patch!