The long awaited Episode 2 Part 1 update has finally arrived! This update features a ton of new features and content such as The Summoner, Runes, Trading, New Defense Changes, 2 New Maps and more! Get ready as this is gonna be a long post! This update is currently out on PC Steam, Xbox and PlayStation! Unfortunately Switch will lag behind quite a bit until a later date.
The Outcast Summoner
The Outcast Summoner, One of the most iconic heroes joins the battle for etheria! You’ll be able to create and try out the new hero along with all their abilities and minions for free.
Before we cover Hero Abilities, let's talk about some of the general features that the hero has first. The hero doesn’t have weapon slots and as such doesn’t have an actual attack. Instead the hero will be allowed to equip 2 pets at once. Additionally the Summoner will be able to equip Tomes and will be able to complete a weapon set using a single tome.
Regarding Minions we also have opted to not have Minion Units but instead use DU for the defenses. This solves 2 issues, the first being that players felt that they were missing out if they didn’t take advantage of having double the “DU” and additionally it would require we balance every map both past and present around having this feature. As such we’ve made sure that the DU of the minions is very light so that you can have more of them and fit them better into existing builds.
Finally the Summoner has the ability to hover by pressing and holding the jump key at any point while the hero is falling. They will still be able to take advantage of the double jump as any hero can.
Primary - Minion Select
- Since the hero doesn’t attack, his primary will be used to select his minions. You are able to do single selection by pressing once or you can do a multi select by holding the input and dragging around the ground reticle to select multiple minions. Additionally if you click and hold when telling them to move you can tell them to evenly space out on a line between 2 points.
Secondary - Overlord Mode
- A big feature of the Summoner was his ability to go into overlord mode and have a more top down RTS style camera. This ability will allow the Outcast Summoner to pan around the map and place minions remotely as well as move them as necessary.
Active Ability - Flash Heal
- Flash heal offers the ability to heal nearby heroes, Minions and defenses by a percentage of their max health, scaling off the hero's Ability stat.
Buff Ability - Pet Boost
- While active the hero's pets will be buffed increasing attack damage and attack speed, scaling off the hero's Ability stat. This was a redux addition that we felt added a lot of potential to the hero being used as a DPS and playing off the ability for the hero to equip 2 pets.
Minion 1 - Archer (2 DU): Summons a Crystalline Dark Elf Archer. Shoots non-piercing arrows at enemies.
Minion 2 - Spider (3 DU): Summons a Crystalline Spider to the battlefield. Flings webs at nearby enemies, slowing them down and doubling all damage they receive.
Minion 3 - Siren (4 DU): Summons a Crystalline Siren to the battlefield. She casts protective shields around defenses reducing incoming damage and also attacks offensively with her ranged attack.
Minion 4 - Dark Elf Mage (4 DU): Summons a Crystalline Dark Elf Mage to the battlefield. Casts fireballs and periodically heals themselves and other nearby minions, as well as heroes.
Minion 5 - Ogre (5 DU): Summons a Crystalline Ogre to the battlefield. Crushes enemies within melee range and occasionally fires poison snot balls from a distance.
Runes are a new feature that allow players to augment their defenses in new ways! These can range from simple additions to completely different abilities. Runes can drop from normal enemies at all levels of play as well as from victory chests. Each act has its own pool of which runes drop from enemies, and each map has a smaller subset of that act pool that drop in the form of a guaranteed drop from the victory chest. You can view where a rune drops on the rune UI itself, displayed as “Favored Map”
Since the Episode 2 Part 1 post we have since changed our minds about having generic runes in the game. This is mainly because we want players to feel like they can use the special runes designed for each tower without feeling punished for not using a generic rune that just gives them more power. We just think this provides a more fun opportunity to players and lets us continue to create more unique runes rather than balance the battle between unique and generic runes.
Currently there are about 53 runes in the game to playtest, some heroes and defenses are missing runes and we will be working on getting those in over time in smaller updates.
Act 5 - 2 New Maps
With the first part of Episode 2 comes 2 new maps to kick off Act 5. After defeating the Lycan King, the heroes traverse a great desert uncovering forgotten locations along the way. The first 2 maps are available and can be played. However they drop the same quality of items that would be seen on the keep, as the increased item quality of act 5 will come with Act 5 boss map.
The Bazaar (100 DU)
You’ll have to fight your way through the Bazaar in order to progress deeper into the secrets this desert holds! As a reward for completing this map on Survival, you’ll be able to obtain a pet version of Hammel!
The Lost Metropolis (130 DU)
Defend your core from threats old and new in the shadow of structures from a forgotten civilization. This map doesn’t yet have a pet reward but will be added in the near future so stay tuned!
Wave Progression Updates
We’ve seen a lot of feedback about how waves feel like they sorta just trickle out and don’t feel very lively. As such we’ve done some investigating and made changes to the way waves come out of their spawners. Players should see more enemies coming out of the spawners at a faster pace. Additionally because of this we’ve increased the total mob counts for the maps to ensure a balance with wave times.
Squire - Sniper Tower
The Sniper tower offers the squire a new single target defense that will be very strong at defeating tanky enemies. It will use a special enemy targeting priority. This tower will replace the Bouncer Blockade as we felt the blockade was often overshadowed by the other blockades in the game.
Huntress - Poison Dart Tower
The Poison Dart Tower is the first addition of a defense to the Huntress’s kit. The PDT will shoot 3 individual projectiles. These projectiles are fanned out so that they spread out and hit multiple enemies down the path. It will use a fodder targeting priority. This tower will replace the Darkness Trap, as it was the most unused defense in the game, the alternative was the Thunder Spike Trap which we felt could have more use cases.
EV - Heat Cannon
The Heat Cannon provides a unique defense to the game. It’s a short ranged flamethrower defense that hits all enemies within its range arc. While this defense is limited in range it will more than make up in defense power. This defense will have a fodder targeting priority. It will replace the new empty slot where Reflect Field was.
EV - Plasma Defense System
The Plasma Defense System or PDS is an omni-directional sentry that can target and attack up to 3 separate targets at once. The defense does have one major flaw in the form of a deadzone. The dead zone prevents the tower from attacking enemies that are too close to the tower. This defense will have a modified version of the special enemy targeting but instead prioritizes Djinns, Copters, and Wyverns before targeting other special enemies. This defense will replace the Shock beam, as we felt that the crowd control it provided was just outclassed by other crowd control oriented defenses regardless of balance.
Auto Loot 2.0
Make sure to take a look at your Auto Loot filters as they will have been reset. You’ll want to take some time to play around with the new system and make auto loot profiles for the different kinds of items you want to be picked up. As long as an item matches 1 of the filters in the list it will be picked up. Do note you can only have 8 filters currently.
Auto Loot Filters also determine what Items get shown on your tactical map. We’ve even added a special icon for Runes, and a purple glow for any Fusion items. So make sure to be on the lookout for those.
- Damage stat scalar increased from 100 to 150.
- Damage base increased from 25 to 50.
- Slow reduced from 50% to 40%
- Monkey King
- Due to implementations for Runes and how those interact with abilities most abilities will have updated scaling which should be equivalent or a slight buff in power.
Stat Scalar Changes
Squire, Huntress, Monk, EV and Rogue all have a increased tower attack Rate stat scalar match Apprentice and Warden, The following towers should be buffed because of this change, some more than others:
- Harpoon, Bowling Ball and Slice N’ Dice, Explosive Trap, Thunder Spike Trap, Electric Aura, Healing Aura, Proton Beam, Overclock beam.
- Squire, Huntress, Monk, EV and Rogue all have a increased tower attack Rate stat scalar match Apprentice and Warden, The following towers should be buffed because of this change, some more than others:
- Hero Abilities
Slice N’ Dice
- Can now attack Sirens.
- Slice N’ Dice
- Starting damage increased from 192 to 250.
- DU Reduced from 5 to 4.
- Base Damage reduced from 450 to 425
- Tower Damage Stat Scalar reduced from 1.6 to 1.45
- No longer slows by default, which can be reintroduced as a rune.
- Sludge Launcher
- All maps now have the same enemy caps as The Keep of 55, which is determined mainly by performance. This should decrease wave times on earlier maps that were being limited
- Added tower prevention volumes to the top of the walls as these were often used as safe spots and provided line of sight that was unbalanced for the intended map design
- Reduced amount of fodder enemies and spiders
- Reduced amount of spiders on Ramparts
- Fixed issue with Halloween Copter Ogres spawning.
- Fixed issue with Upgrade / Repair item effects weren’t stacking duration properly.
- Fixed potential crash with damaging emitters.
- Fixed issue with aiming past dead enemies would cause projectiles to shoot up into the sky.
- Fixed issue with Loot not showing on the tactical map.
- Fixed issue with Decoy not showing nameplates.
- Fixed issue with Rift portals having 0 HP in mixed mode.
- Training Dummies have more health.
- Training Dummies now can display DPS values above 2B without going negative.
- Siren drops were dropping at much higher than expected levels.
- Skeletons now take 1 second to respawn instead of 3.
- Tavern difficulty scaling should line up with gameplay maps more closely now.
Well now that Episode 2 Part 1 is out, the next focus is on getting the remaining Part 2 additions done. Currently looking at releasing that sometime early next year as with all the holidays coming up it will limit work capacity. Besides the remaining Episode 2 work, we may look at doing a smaller Winter Holiday update / event but let you know as that progresses.
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