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I_PASS_BUTTER

As we mentioned in yesterday’s Looking Ahead post, we have a new creative director -- Elliot Cannon! We’re super excited to have him on the team. Some of us also have new job titles. In this week’s Dev Log, we share what those new titles are and talk about what we’re working on this week:


Elliot Cannon, Creative Director

Hey everyone! This year is going to be tons of fun for you. We’re unifying the game, getting PS4 and PC on the same content and release rhythm, refining what’s rough around the edges and finishing up those missing elements every game deserves. We’re expanding the game’s hero library to give you more ways to play DD2 with a deck you create that suits your play style with greater options. We’re improving matchmaking so it’s easier to play solo or with friends, and creating ways to measure your success for yourself, against your friends, and the world. Right now, everyone is cranking on the Dragonfall Carnival while design, art, and programming are designing and building new heroes. I’m working through all the details of this, the UI, the game loop, balance, community requests, and everything under the sun, all driven by the goal of elevating DD2 from its awesome foundation into something even more fun and addicting.   


Daniel Haddad, Design Director (Blacksmith)

Hello everyone! I’ve now successfully transitioned to my new role as the Design Director. This allows me to focus all my efforts on the design aspect on DD2 and work closely with Elliot. My primary goals right now are focused on designing and implementing our first new hero, the Abyss Lord! I’m working with Derek (programmer), John (animator), Joseph (vfx artist), and others to ensure we make a strong first impression with this new hero. Additionally, I am working closely with Brys to revamp our matchmaking flow with a lot of new and exciting changes that should be a drastic improvement. While I’m not juggling those two watermelons, I’m also working a lot with Elliot to formulate a plan of action to execute a lot of the ideas we have for 2016. It should be a fun year full of blood, sweat, and tears (hopefully joyful ones!).


Danny Araya, Art Director (DannyAraya)

I am now Art Director! My responsibilities will be focused on working with the art team to maintain and continue improving the visual style of all future content for DD2. I’m also working closely with Elliot on all writing tasks and churning out tons of concept art!

This week it’s dialogue, dialogue, dialogue! Working with the world building team to solidify the aesthetics, lighting, and the color pallette for the new map! Also working with Afshin as he composes (IMO) one of the best tracks we’ve seen so far in DD2!  

Tim Shannon, PS4 Producer (TimmyTrashTier)

Getting everything set up for a big February and March for our PS4 users and trying not to freeze in Wisconsin.  The next couple months will be pretty busy as we move to catch up to the PC version and release some five milestones worth of content in the process.  Make sure to check out the PS4 subforum on an ongoing basis for regular updates and discussion on the direction and future of the platform.


Josh Isom, Community Manager (iamisom)

You’ll notice a few new titles in this Dev Log, but we’ve also reorganized to open up more resources for our weekly patches. So what does this mean? We’re hoping to get more community-requested feature/balance/quality of life changes into our weekly patches along with our bug fixes! Did someone say cutscene skipping?


I also want to give a special shoutout to u/shadowlaunch on Reddit for creating a Dungeon Defenders II Planner! If you want to share your builds with other players, check it out.


P.S. While our Dev Logs are primarily about DD2, I want to give an extra special thanks to the DD1 Community Development Team, whose efforts were recently showcased by MMORPG.com! We’re so grateful for their passion and dedication. I’ll leave you with this choice quote from the article:


“Most games and companies would kill to have this sort of devotion. Most players would kill to have the developers take them this seriously.”


James Reid, Software Programmer (Driscan)

Lots of work on UI and flow for thing #1 and it’s coming together nicely. Lots of meetings about thing #1 and thing #2. Still doing some minor work on thing #3 as well. Hopefully soon I can replace thing with what it really is.

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Jeffrey Bickel, Technical Level Designer (TE_Jeff)

This week I’m ensuring all my work’s in a solid place to use some vacation days and take a short trip. It’s looking good so far, and I’m excited to do some battery charging and sip some fruity drinks on a beach. I’m really excited for the new direction DD2 is headed in - this year should be a fantastic one for Defenders!


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Steven Collins, Lead Level Designer (Esorath)

The new map is coming along nicely! Setting up all the difficulties we want this map to be located at. Also moving forward with any extra little hidden items located in this map!


Chris Flores, Supreme Warlord and Commander (likethatwhenigothere)

A bit later in the week we’ll get started on Patch 9.7 builds, but currently we’re hacking away at getting the PS4/PC projects together in one mamma jamma project. Should make development on both platforms easier. As soon as that’s done and merged, we’re full steam ahead at testing the new update as it comes in.


Abraham Abdala, Lead Tech Animator (Broham)

Lots and lots and lots of prototyping for… the Abyss Lord, new towers, abilities, animations, simulations, you name it. A super awesome hero awaits!


Joshua Javaheri, Art Producer (javahawk)

Carnival!


Adam Stow, Project Manager (TE_Stow)

A new title for a new year!


Managing a whirlwind of development in production for 4 years here at Trendy (seriously!) has made me want to aspire to something more holistic. I’m glad I’m being given that opportunity, and I hope I can provide for you all in time a holistic view of where we’re going.


Jason Yu, Associate Producer (urfyness)

The focus this week is to finally start putting all the pieces of the puzzle together so we can see what we’re building. The goal is to have all the big features in place so we can understand how it’ll feel and make any adjustments before polishing. The pieces this week are fun prizes, the Carnivall, the outdoor hub, normalization, a buff bar, and more!


Javier Barreto, Lead Software Programmer (javo)

And they are gone; my parents that is. They’ve been staying at my place for about a month and man that was fun… and somewhat exhausting… but a good exhausting. =) [Ed. Note:  Javo, man, you gave me a heart attack.] My parents got to bond with my daughter pretty nicely (which was the original purpose of their trip). While doing so she learned to stand (definitively), wave her hands saying goodbye, say “hola” (we believe... ) Yeah, lots of fun, lots of driving.


And so a new year begun and with it some changes; we are bringing the PS4 project in-house! We hope that by doing so we will get feature parity faster; it’s almost a must as we are consolidating the code between the two SKUs. The immediate target is to define and get the cross-platform development wheel spinning once and for all (in this case, cross-platform means working on two platforms at once). A lot of challenges open up with this change in the process (UIs, controller support, stores, etc.), but we are confident and excited about this; in a way we’ve been waiting for this to happen for a while now… and the time has finally come. =D


On a personal note, I feel like I’m doing more code reviews than ever. I want things to go as smoothly as possible when we fully switch to cross-platform development for which I (we) need to know with a lot more detail how things are wired across both platforms: where could they break, what should we be looking out for and where should we make exceptions and why… find a good balance between “make it work” and “that should be abstracted/refactored/generalized.” We are running a live game here. We need to deliver.


Well, it wasn't my intention to write a long post. I don’t have a banana to share (nor a potato); sry =P


Jesus Diaz, World Builder (N3oDoc)

Been working on the Carnival -- most of the time in the out-of-bounds areas.

JesusD_1_Secret_level.jpg


Daniel Diaz, World Builder (DanielKaMi)

It's been a week since we've started the world building on the Carnival. Everyone is doing great efforts to have it finished very soon. I think it's coming out quite fun!


Dani Moore, Remote QA Manager (Dani)

Fumigating the Carnival area for nasty bugs. Trying really hard not to be distracted by the shiny lights.

iamisom





Steam Early Access. Those three words inspire so much discussion. It’s no longer just the finished product that matters -- it’s how you get there that makes all the difference.

Since our Early Access launch in December 2014, we’ve released 9 major updates and 51 patches. We’ve added, removed and tweaked major systems thanks to your feedback. We’ve revealed the behind-the-scenes workings of our studio through weekly Development Logs and Devstreams. And many of you have dedicated your free time to help development in a variety of ways. It’s been an incredible experience working with you so far, and this year, we’re taking it to 11!

Here’s our big 2016 plan for Dungeon Defenders II on PC and PS4!


New Year, New Us


We’re super excited to share that Elliot Cannon is our new creative director! Elliot is a video game industry veteran with over twenty years of design leadership experience. He was one of the original designers on Unreal and Unreal Tournament, titles that launched Epic Games and the Unreal Engine as the most successful licensed game engine in the world. Elliot led multiple projects at Crytek Germany and Crytek Budapest during the development of the Crysis franchise and was the creative director behind Crysis Warhead. He has also worked as a lead designer on multiplayer titles such as Warhammer 40k – Dark Millennium Online and Steam-focused live update titles such as Killing Floor, Killing Floor 2, Red Orchestra 2 and Rising Storm. Prior to joining Trendy, he was the design director at id Software on Doom and an adjunct lecturer on video game design at Southern Methodist University’s Guildhall, one of the premier graduate video game education programs in the United States.

His experience brings a much-needed perspective to our team, and the impact since his arrival in early December has been incredible. Together, we’ve refocused the vision for Dungeon Defenders II, and it’s awesome.

So what’s the refocused vision for Dungeon Defenders II? Focusing on what makes our game great:  Tower Defense and Heroes. Let’s use that foundation and build upon it. Let’s improve the systems that aren’t up to par. Let’s get the PS4 and PC versions on the same update cycle. Overall, let’s finish the damn game, and then continue to build on it.


Our New Roadmap


With our refocused and reinvigorated vision, we needed a new roadmap for 2016. We’re still working out the details, but we wanted to share the big items with you right away.


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Get the PS4 version in sync with the PC version.

In 2016, the PS4 and the PC will be on the same major update. It’s important that our PS4 players are right there with our PC players as we release new content and changes.

To do this, we will release the remaining updates that separate PS4 from PC in a shorter window. We’ve tentatively scheduled the next PS4 update for the beginning of February, which includes 3 major updates -- Alpha & Beyond, Ascension Part I and Ascension Part II.Then, we’re hoping to release The Harbinger Awakens update along with the current milestone together shortly after that. From this point on, the two versions will be in-sync. We’ll develop new updates for the two versions at the same time, and we’ll release the updates simultaneously.


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Our first new hero... the Abyss Lord!


Make new heroes -- lots of them.

Our biggest goal for 2016 is to build a deep Hero Library. In fact, we’re working on our first new hero right now (tentatively called the Abyss Lord)!

We don’t plan to just make one or two heroes this year. We want to make lots of them. Right now, our team is doing pre-production work to get the design and play of our first hero right. We’re starting designs for more new heroes, too.Our goal is to release new heroes and expand your choices early this year, and we can’t wait to share more details with you.


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Improve features. Adjust balance. Fix bugs.

Another big goal for us in 2016 is to improve what’s currently in the game. Just like our first hero, our design team is doing pre-production work right now to flesh out what changes they’d like to make to existing systems.

Our focus for early 2016 is refining the Hero Deck with a unified theme and new UI across major parts of the game. (Note:  The UI above is temporary and does not reflect any final changes to the system.) We also will be improving Matchmaking so you can play with your friends and others much easier, with greater control and cooler rewards. Our designers are knee-deep in figuring out the nitty-gritty details of the changes to these systems, and we’ll provide those details after the release of the current milestone.


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Make new content.

While our designers and programmers are busy designing new heroes and changes to core features, our level designers and art team are working on some fun new content for you to play!

In our next major update in February, we’re releasing the Dragonfall Carnival. The Dragonfall Carnival contains a brand-new, limited-time event map full of madness and wonder. Don’t miss your chance to win exclusive costumes!

Along with the Carnival, we’re introducing a brand-new outdoor social hub called the Heroes Marketplace. It’s time to embrace the open air as you mingle with other players. The Heroes Marketplace gives us more flexibility in real estate expansion to include...well, you’ll just have to wait to find out.


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Finally, let’s finish the damn game.

It’s our plan to leave Early Access this year. Really, Trondo? Really really. Everything we do this year will move us closer to this goal. You can expect more polish and higher production values to come on top of the new heroes, system changes, balance adjustments, bug fixes and new content that’s coming your way.


Our Progress So Far


To wrap things up, we wanted to take a moment to reflect on how the game has changed since our Early Access launch. Here’s a refresher on the major changes we’ve made to the game:

February 2015 (Foundation Part 1):

  • Campaign Mode

  • Daily Missions

  • Incursions

  • Social Tavern

  • Challenges, Titles & Steam Achievements

  • Defense/Hero Balance Changes


March 2015 (Foundation Part 2):

  • Hard Mode

  • Player Kicking

  • Forge/Inventory Overhaul

  • Removal of Downleveling (and Associated Changes)

  • Matchmaking Improvements

  • Defense/Hero Balance Changes


April 2015 (Pets & Dragons):

  • Betsy, Our First Boss Fight!

  • Three New Maps

  • Three New Incursions

  • Pet System

  • Skill Sphere System

  • Costume and Accessory System

  • Daily Quest System

  • Four New NPC Shops

  • Early Access Rewards

  • Lockboxes

  • New Challenges & Titles

  • Defense/Hero Balance Changes


July 2015 (Loot & Survive):

  • WIPEAGEDDON

  • Pets 2.0

  • Fourth Hero Deck Slot

  • Loot/Item Overhaul (including Item Power System)

  • Major Matchmaking Overhaul

  • Onslaught Mode

  • Nightmare I, II, III and IV

  • Lane Trait and Resistance System

  • Tutorial

  • NPC Dialogue Boxes

  • Daily Mission System Overhaul + New UI

  • Defense/Hero Balance Changes


September 2015 (Alpha & Beyond):

  • Went Into Alpha (obviously)

  • Daily Map Bonus System

  • Build System

  • Inventory 3.0

  • New Onslaught Maps

  • Enter Private Tavern From Main Menu/Move Between Taverns In-Game

  • Skill Spheres UI Update

  • Difficulty/Loot/Pet/Passive/Skill Sphere/Defense/Hero/Economy Balance Changes


October 2015 (Ascension Part I and Part II):

  • Two New Maps

  • Spooky Event 2015

  • Steam Trading Cards

  • Auto-Collect Filter System

  • Stat Points Systems (stats on level up)

  • Increased Defense Size (+ Defense Balance Changes)

  • Melee Weapon Variety System

  • Ranged Weapon Variety System

  • Partial Controller Support

  • Enemy Rollout Changes (“Support” vs. “Standard” Enemy Changes)

  • New Passives and Skill Spheres

  • New Builds

  • Skill Sphere System Update

  • Defense/Hero Balance Changes


December 2015 (The Harbinger Awakens):

  • New Boss:  The Harbinger

  • New Map, Two Redone Maps

  • Loot V2

  • Endgame Progression Changes

  • NPC Shop Item Generation Changes

  • Accessory Progression Changes

  • New Challenges & Quests

  • Improved Controller Support

  • War Cache + Galactic Weapons Event

  • New Builds

  • New Cinematics

  • Difficulty/Loot Progression Changes


By the way, this list doesn’t include the hundreds of bug fixes, balance changes and quality of life improvements from our weekly patches.

2015 was a busy year, and this year is going to be even busier. We hope you enjoy the ride as much as the result. In the comments below, tell us:  What are you more excited to see in 2016?

Love,
The Trendy Team

iamisom

Patch 9.6 for Steam

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Here are the notes for Patch 9.6 on Steam!


Content

  • New Squire Costume:  Ebonfire Warlord!


Balance

  • Hearty Blockade (Spike Blockade):

    • Hearty Blockade now increases Defense Health based on Defense Health (was based on Hero Health); old items should receive the updated passive.

    • Shields now have an exception to generate with Hearty Blockade.

    • Increasing Hearty Blockade per-piece maximum to 20%-25% to achieve comparatively same maximum health as before this update.

      • Existing items will update to a comparatively useful new value.

    • You can read more about these changes in Brett’s thread.

  • Null Void (Training Dummy):  Increased health bonus from 120% to 150%.

  • Arcane Resilience (Arcane Barrier):  Increased health bonus from 100% to 140%.

  • Increased minimum value on Null Void and Arcane Barrier from 70% of Max to 80% of Max.

  • Guardian (Hero Health + Defense Health) stat combination removed from rolling

    • Weighting that assigned to Guardian moved to Rook (DP + DH)

  • Pet debuffs that can stack now have their damage potential capped. Note:  There’s a bug where some pet abilities can only stack if the pets involved are of different evolution tiers. We’re looking into this.


Bug Fixes

  • Ogres teleported by Null Void will be placed just outside of the spawner to avoid getting stuck.

  • Fixed an issue where the Frostbite Tower wouldn’t attack enemies at Tiers 4 and 5.

  • Victory Smell now decreases time between burn rate ticks as intended.

  • Fixed an issue where quickly toggling a bag will glitch it and prevent it from appearing/disappearing until toggled slowly.

  • Onslaught Currency Reward should now properly appear at the end of each round.

  • Fixed a bug where pet stats could reroll the same as the current value.

  • Players can now properly skip the end-of-match timer after losing on The Dead Road or Temple of the Necrotic.

  • Removed some lingering VFX from the Tavern weapons rack.

  • Sound now plays when players gain the Holy Buff on Temple of the Necrotic.

  • Added an error message if a player tries to purchase a sale item as the sale starts/ends.

  • Fixed a visual bug that occurred when purchasing a pet slot upgrade.

  • Fixed an issue where some pet animations weren’t playing if players were using the Apprentice or Huntress.

  • Fixed an issue where airlanes were displaying Nightmare evil eyes in the lane spawners.

  • Fixed a typo in the Howling passive description.

  • Fixed a collision issue on mana nodes.

  • Fixed some lingering winter NPC text issues.

  • Fixed a typo in the Dark Shawl costume description.


I_PASS_BUTTER


49t9dra.png

Jason Yu, Associate Producer (urfyness)

Hi all. This week, we’re internally playtesting the new map to try and lock down the layout so our amazing world builders can start on it. We’ve seen prototypes for some cool new consumable items we’re trying out for the first time in our game. We’re in the process of approving a temporary replacement of our old summary screen with something much simpler. We’re also looking at a first pass of a buff bar to see what that will look like in DD2 and going through those approvals. We have just integrated the Social Hub so there’s a ton of cleanup involved there, such as hooking up new animations, vfx, optimizations, and making sure quests work. There’s definitely more going on, but those are the hot topics that I’m focusing on for now.


Tim Shannon, PS4 Producer (TimmyTrashTier)

Continuing my never-being-in-Florida trend, I’m still out at Human Head Studios enjoying the mild weather and working on the Ascension Part II update for PS4 - get hype!  We’re also talking about plans for the next few months for PS4 - get extra hype, lots of cool things coming down the pipe!


Danny Araya, Creative Director (DannyAraya)

Working on pose sketches and personalities for an awesome new NPC and also churning out sketches for a map-related cool thing which I can’t really talk about. Also coming up with new dialogue!


Jay Twining, Senior Game Designer (TrendyJayT)

Adding some fun and temporary consumables to the game!


James Reid, Software Programmer (Driscan)

Working on a thing that’s related to a thing I can’t talk about. I like the new layout of it, it works a lot better. Can’t wait to get that into your hands. Also working on multiple UI things for the other thing that I can’t talk about yet. So yeah, I’m working on things.


Jeffrey Bickel, Technical Level Designer (TE_Jeff)

Working on some fun rule & enemy changes for our new map! Now that we’ve iterated on the layout, it’s time to start getting the pieces all together and identifying solid ways to improve it before it gets into y’all’s hands.


Steven Collins, Lead Level Designer (Esorath)

This week and last week we have been testing and iterating on our newest map. After many iterations, we have arrived at a layout with which we are happy! Now time to finalize it and start to make it look pretty.


Chris Flores, QA Lead (likethatwhenigothere)

Eagerly awaiting the PS4/PC consolidation build to test so we can get the PS4 more up to date with the PC build. In addition to that, starting prep work for the new milestone content (messing with the outdoor hub right now) and gathering info on the next hotfix.


Adam Stow, Associate Producer (TE_Stow)

Teaching some people JIRA javahawk and catfaerie.  It’s not like I came out of the womb with this skillset, you guys can do it!!


Jesus Diaz, World Builder (N3oDoc)

Working on some assets for the new level and adding some new stuff in the new Social Hub level!


Daniel Diaz, World Builder (DanielKaMi)

I've been working on some assets for our new level and soon we will be starting the world building on it. Can't wait!


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iamisom

Patch 9.5 for Steam

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Here are the notes for Patch 9.5 on Steam!


Features

  • Loot V2: Build Weapon Update

    • Build Weapons are now in line with Loot V2. They will now generate with only Hero- or Defense-focused Stats.

      • Build Passives that enhance defenses should generate only with Defense-focused Stats.

      • Build Passives that enhance combat/heroes should generate only with Hero-focused Stats.

  • The Winter Event has been turned off.

  • The “Ready Up” sound effect will play inside the Inventory/Forge when other players ready up. Thanks for the suggestion, u/capSAR273 and many others!

  • Players can now skip the final build phase on the Harbinger boss battle.


Balance

  • Nightmare IV difficulty reduced for 1-, 2- and 3-player matches. This change affects Nightmare End Game and Nightmare Incursions.

  • Increased the drop rates on the Ramparts Incursion weapons.

  • Heroes using weapons with splash damage were gaining the full Critical Damage bonus for every target hit, even if the initial hit only did 1 damage due to falloff. Crit Damage is now a % bonus so it proportionately scales all Hero Damage. The splash damage from crits now also falls off the further away an enemy is from the point of impact.


Bug Fixes

  • The Defense Preview (when a defense is selected but not yet placed) will now display a defense’s true range, taking into account any Skill Spheres, passives or stat points that affect range.

  • Fixed a bug where the Dragolich debuff stacks across multiple players. There is another debuff stacking bug associated with the Dragolich that we have planned to fix in an upcoming patch.

  • Fixed a bug where pets would gain pet affection if you lost a wave. You will need to win the wave to gain affection.

  • Pet-based attacks and abilities will now target the Harbinger.

  • Fixed a bug where players could spam G on a phase transition to immediately skip the Build Phase.

  • The Prince's ship cannons will now damage the Harbinger’s cannons.

  • Fixed a bug where players were able to damage the Harbinger before Phase 1 starts by looking through at his health bar that is visible.

  • The Harbinger will no longer lose his arm if you send him into Build Phase while knocking him off his cannon or destroying his cannon.

  • Air enemies no longer get stuck (or taking very long to exit) inside the northeast air spawner on Greystone Plaza.

  • Changed the description of the Fight Me Not Sphere to say X% Damage instead of X% Extra Damage.

  • Fixed an issue where occasionally a player’s gem total would not load when loading into the Social Tavern.

  • Fixed a bug where players were able to build on top of the Prince’s cannons.

  • Fixed a tooltip issue with the currently Monthly Mission.

  • Fixed an animation issue with the Harbinger in the final Combat Phase.

  • Fixed an issue that could stop players from readying up in Onslaught.

  • Damaging the Harbinger’s cannons now has an associated sound effect.

  • Fixed an issue where the “Transform Egg” button did not indicate a sale if one was available.

  • Fixed an issue where Orc Skeletons were falling through the ground in Temple of the Necrotic.

  • Fixed a collision issue with pet attacks.

  • Fixed a bug where the sellback value of items for sale in the Blacksmith and Relic shops was the same as the purchase price.

  • Fixed an issue where the Crystalline Saber and the Harbinger Weapons were not displaying their names properly.

  • Fixed a text issue with the Player Kick menu.

  • Fixed a text issue with the “Get More Pet Slots” button.

  • Fixed a VFX issue with the Steampunktress’ foot rocket in the Costume Shop.

  • Fixed a VFX issue with the Harbinger Apprentice weapon.

  • Fixed an animation issue with the Harbinger’s cape.

  • Fixed a text issue on the Prince’s cannons.

  • Fixed a collision issue in the Tavern.

  • Adjusted SFX and VFX when you knock the Harbinger out of Meteor Strike.

  • Fixed a UI issue when purchasing a new Inventory Bag.

  • Fixed an issue where when Defense Crit Damage was the 2nd or 3rd stat on an item, the text extended beyond the frame of the tooltip.


Other Notes

  • We'd like to try something new this week. If there's a bug or an issue you'd like to see fixed in an upcoming weekly patch, please head to this thread on our subreddit and let us know!
I_PASS_BUTTER

We’re back! Here’s what we’re working on this week:

Danny Araya, Creative Director ([[64026,users]])

Doing lots of character personality sketches for NPCs and stuff! Also recovering from being deathly ill over the holiday break.  


Tim Shannon, PS4 Producer ([[77554,users]])

Getting back into the swing of things and preparing for another trip out to Human Head Studios to finish out the next content update. We have a hotfix we’re evaluating this week that will deliver on some things people have been asking for.


James Reid, Software Programmer ([[56071,users]])

Shaking the cobwebs out after the break. Came back to some meetings about some upcoming coolness that I can’t wait to get into your hands. I think y’alls gonna like wuts we got cookin up.


Jeffrey Bickel, Technical Level Designer ([[61256,users]])

Getting my groove back after the holidays, supporting young Mr. Collins on our new map. Exciting things are afoot!


Steven Collins, Lead Level Designer ([[48993,users]])

New year, new levels to make. Upcoming level we are creating will be something a little different. ;)


Chris Flores, QA Lead ([[59727,users]])

At a bit of a low at the moment, so taking the opportunity to research some withstanding issues and getting started on the next batch of bug fixes. Also trying to get the full 411 on what’s coming the pipe so we can plan for it. Got the feeling I won’t be getting much sleep in a few weeks.


Abraham Abdala, Lead Tech Animator ([[59787,users]])

All kinds of preparations and prototyping for our new map.


Joshua Javaheri, Lead Technical Artist ([[23,users]])

Makin’ my way downtown, do do le do do le doo.


Jason Yu, Associate Producer ([[56534,users]])

Happy New Years! We hit the ground running this year, wasting no time to get you all the latest and greatest. We’re internally playtesting the new map multiple times this week to pick a direction, and then we’re full steam ahead. We may also have a really exciting secret project in the works


Jesus Diaz, World Builder ([[39450,users]])

After having an awesome break for the holidays, we’re back to work again! And this time we are working on a new special level that will hopefully provide a lot of fun!


Daniel Diaz, World Builder ([[33096,users]])

We are recharged from the awesome holiday break and now working on a new level with lots of new gameplay features and fun. :)


Dani Moore, Remote QA Manager ([[25251,users]])

Having an awesome holiday break really does recharge the soul. Managed to spend a lot of time catching up on games, friends and and personal projects.

Now with the new year, we’re eyeing up a Hotfix that may have already gone out by the time you read this and scoping out the plans for the next milestone push, which really has me excited considering the content that's going to be included.

Additionally, over the next few weeks I’m planning on making some changes to the RPG and RQA groups and hopefully recruiting more Defenders to help us test the game and upcoming content. If you’re interested, email me at dani.moore[at]trendyent[dot]com.

iamisom

Patch 9.4 for Steam

Welcome to the start of a new year! This week's patch contains the newest Monthly Mission. Next week, we'll be back to our regularly scheduled bug fix/balance patches.

Features

  • New Monthly Mission:  No Fear New Year. Do you have the courage to take on this month's challenge?

  • Requirements:

    • Win 35 maps without losing a sub-objective!

    • Kill 50 Ogres!

    • Win 25 Incursions!

  • Rewards:

    • 300,000 gold

    • 40 Wyvern Tokens

    • Scourge Dragon Pet

    • Title: The Fearless
pmasher

Happy Holidays Flash Sale

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Happy Holidays Defenders, 

To celebrate the Holidays, we have our first flash sale! 

FLASH SALE: Get 25% off premium pet eggs*! Sale ends 12AM EST, December 26th. 

*Offer excludes G4-T0 

pmasher

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With 125,000 members in the Steam group, you can now wield the power of the Squire’s Crystalline Saber! This legendary blade can drop from mobs, special enemies and Victory Chests.

The next weapon -- the Huntress’ Bow-Blaster -- will unlock at 175,000 members. Join the Steam Group to unlock this laser-blasting bow! If you work together and spread the word, you’ll unlock this weapon in no time.

The War Cache has also been refreshed. Login to get another random galactic weapon in the Tavern.

Sincerely,
The Trendy Team

iamisom

Hotfix 9.3 for Steam

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Hotfix 9.3 includes loot changes based on your Loot V2 feedback! Here are the notes:


Loot Changes

  • Armor and Relics no longer generate mixed defense/hero stat combinations.

    • For example, Defense Power will always be found with Defense Health or Defense Crit Chance.

    • Similarly, Hero Damage will always be found with Ability Power, Hero Crit Chance, or Hero Health.

    • The one exception to this is Defense Health + Hero Health for Hearty Blockade builds.

  • Defense-focused passives will only generate on items that have at least one Defense stat.

    • For example, you’ll only see Tripwire or Vector Corrector on items with Defense Power, Defense Crit Damage, or Defense Health.

    • The exception to this is Build passives, which are still randomly assigned. Build passives will be addressed in a future patch.

  • Hero-focused passives will only generate on items that have at least one Hero stat.

    • Like the above, this means an item must have Hero Damage, Ability Power, Hero Crit Damage, or Hero Health to see, for example, the Channel passive.

    • The exception to this is Weapons as the Hero Damage on weapons is ignored when determining passives.

    • Elemental Damage is considered a Hero stat.

    • Build Passives are the exception here again.

  • iPWR 231+ items now require Hero Level 50 (was level 46).

  • Added Iron Core, Tripwire, Amped Up and Pyromania passives to Weapons and Tripwire passive to Relics.

    • This is to help ensure Legendary non-build weapons with Defense stats will generate with a full complement of Defense-focused passives.

    • Tripwire was added to relics to maintain parity between the basic passives amongst all heroes (it was available on weapons already, but not on relics).


War Cache Refresh and Fixes

  • The War Cache will now roll a galactic weapon based on the hero that opens the cache and not the hero that you first login with. The weapon will generate based on the iPWR and the hero class you have out. (Note:  It’s not a 100% guarantee that the galactic weapon will be for your hero class.)

  • The War Cache has been refreshed! Join the Steam Group to make these weapons become permanent drops in the game!


Bug Fixes

  • Fixed the targeting issues with the Frostbite Tower.

  • Fixed two server crash issues.


Note About Difficulty

  • Thanks to everyone for sharing your feedback about the current endgame difficulty. We’re going to continue to tweak difficulty balance based on player feedback and data.
iamisom

Hotfix 9.2 for Steam

Hotfix 9.2 is here! Here are the notes:


Bug Fixes

  • Fixed a bug where Pet Ability Reroll prices were going above the intended 10,000 Gold cap. For those who spent money on Pet Ability Rerolls, we’ve included a compensation in this update. Details on that are in the next section.

  • Fixed a bug where the Dragolich’s Damage Buff was affecting the damage dealt to the Harbinger when a cannon was destroyed.

  • The Harbinger now destroys the Training Dummies in his arena upon spawning on the Prince's Ship.

  • Fixed a bug where the Null Void Training Dummy passive was affecting the Harbinger.


Pet Ability Reroll Compensation

  • If you spent gold on Pet Ability Rerolls before 5PM EST yesterday, you’ll find the following items in the Mailbox shortly after 3PM EST today:

  • Total Spent = 1,000 – 15,000 Gold

    • Refund – 10,000 Gold

  • Total Spent = 15,001 – 50,000 Gold

    • Refund – 30,000 Gold

  • Total Spent = 50,001 – 100,000 Gold

    • Refund – 80,000 Gold

  • Total Spent = 100,001 – 250,000 Gold

    • Refund – 200,000 Gold

  • Total Spent = 250,001 Gold or more

    • Refund – 450,000 Gold (avg spent here is 430k gold)


Notes About Loot Changes

  • First of all, thank you so much for sharing your feedback about the recent loot changes. Your constructive criticism will help us further tweak the system.

  • We’re working on an update that will further increase the frequency of desirable stat combinations and passives based on your feedback, so stay tuned for more news on that improvement in the near future.

  • Brett, the designer behind the recent loot changes, took to the forums last night to take a deeper dive into the new systems. You can check out his post here.


War Cache Update

  • The War Cache has been updated to generate galactic weapons of weapons up to Nightmare IV iPWR. 
  • Currently, there's a known issue where the War Cache will generate for the first hero that loads into the tavern instead of the hero who opens the Cache. We're working to fix this issue in a future update.
iamisom

Hotfix 9.1 for Steam

Hotfix 9.1 is now live! Here are the notes:


Bug Fixes

  • Fixed an issue where the Frostbite Tower would not freeze enemies.

  • Fixed an issue where certain pet abilities were unintentionally causing the Harbinger to slow down.

  • Fixed an issue that would happen with the Harbinger when a player blocks his way near the cannon.

  • Fixed an issue where the Harbinger could fall through the world by triggering the Build Phase at a very specific time.

  • Fixed an issue where players were able to build Flamethrower Towers in the Harbinger’s arena.

  • Fixed an issue where the Harbinger would not have any walking animations.


Thank you for all of the feedback you’re sharing on the latest update. We're reading everything and taking down notes. Thanks for helping us make improvements to the game while we're in Early Access!


Love,

The Trendy Team
iamisom

Here are the hotfix notes for PS4!


Bug Fixes

  • Pets can now be equipped in the Forge.
  • Hero cards are now properly being swapped out when in the Hero Deck.
  • Action bar corrected for pet vendor interactions.
  • The item enhancement animation can now be skipped.
  • Skipping a video no longer triggers a hero ability.
  • Inventory navigation cleaned up.
  • Pet stable navigation cleaned up.
  • Costume navigation cleaned up.
  • Evolve button is now disabled when pet is max evolved.
  • Difficulty icon in HUD fixed.
  • Inventory correctly showing iPWR instead of iLVL.
  • Inventory correctly shows valid sell values.
  • Players in split screen should no longer receive confirmation messages when one of them transitions.
  • Quest panel now displays correct quest in split screen.
  • Quest paths now display properly in split screen.


We're aware of the other issues being reported to us! We'll address them after our holiday break. Thanks for helping us improve the game, Defenders!

iamisom



Today, we're putting the finishing touches on our latest Dungeon Defenders II update, The Harbinger Awakens, which you'll have in your hands tomorrow. For you, it must feel like your birthday. There's this great big gift waiting for you. You get to open it, play with the new loot, fight the new boss, and just escape into this weird, wonderful thing we're making. But we're on the other side. We're the gift givers. We’ve spent hours poring over everything you told us so we could find you the perfect gift. And now we have to wait for you to open it. Worry about if it's what you wanted. Wonder how we're going to top it next time. That's a lot of pressure.

But we like being your gift givers. Because you wonderful guys and girls have supported us through our first year of Early Access. That means a lot to us. We aren't a AAA studio with a huge budget. You're not going to see Dungeon Defenders II on some parkside bench or a billboard. We're a small team, and we only get to make these gaming gifts because you believe in us. You support us. We hope each and every one of you realizes that. You are the sole reason we get to wake up every morning, see our children off to school, head into the office and make video games. What an insane, crazy world this is where we get to make fun for a living. Thank you. Thank you so much for that.

We really hope you enjoy your gift. We'll see you online tomorrow.

- Isom

iamisom



New boss. Better loot. Less grind. The Harbinger Awakens update brings this and more when it comes out Tuesday, December 15th. If you’re looking for more details, check out the update page. You can also unlock galactic weapons by joining the Steam Group!

We also showed off the update today on our Devstream. Watch the archived video here!

Dev Log 51

Our team is working full steam ahead on finishing the update. Here’s what we’re working on this week.


Daniel Haddad, Creative Director (Blacksmith)

Wrapping up the Harbinger with the rest of the design team and planning some cool updates for the next milestone!


Danny Araya, Creative Director (DannyAraya)

Wrapping up Harbinger stuff and doing some art exploration for the next Event!


Tim Shannon, PS4 Producer (TimmyTrashTier)

Figuring out what, if anything, we can release before winter break and catching up on what I missed while I was at PSX.


Jay Twining, Senior Game Designer (TrendyJayT)

Polish, playtesting and polish!


Jeffrey Bickel, Technical Level Designer (TE_Jeff)

Squashing bugs and balancing this fight are my entire week. I truly cannot wait for y’all to start fighting this guy, he’s a beast!


Steven Collins, Lead Level Designer (Esorath)

Testing and bug fixing time! Lots of Harbinger fights going on while we make sure the balance for all the difficulties are a go. Can’t wait to see everyone’s strategies on taking down the big guy.


Chris Flores, QA Lead (likethatwhenigothere)

At war with all the bugs.

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Abraham Abdala, Lead Tech Animator (Broham)

Finishing last bits of cinematics and doing final renders and compositions. Doing final checkups on skins, pets, anything that moves.


Joshua Javaheri, Lead Technical Artist (javahawk)

FINISHING ALL THE THINGS GOTTA GO FAST


Adam Stow, Associate Producer (TE_Stow)

I’m very proud of what the team has done with the Harbinger. I’ve been with these guys for 4 years, but it still shocks me how much ideas and content evolve for the better during passionate development. I hope you guys enjoy it as much as we enjoyed building it.  

I hope for the next boss we have an outtakes reel though--ideas that failed, the almighty Collins Blockagon, busted playtests and recorded moments in playtest feedback that resemble Jerry Springer angst and rage at one another! But the end result is always something we look at each other and smile about.


Javier Barreto, Lead Software Programmer (javo)

Work, work, work … the faster you type, the more you code, the better the quality… right? ;)

The pressure is on!


Jesus Diaz, World Builder (N3oDoc)

Working on the Social Hub level, rebuilding some gameplay areas and creating some modular assets for slums houses!


Daniel Diaz, World Builder (DanielKaMi)

Working on the Social Hub level, adding new explorable areas and rebuilding the inside of some buildings like the new tavern and the castle.


Dani Moore, Remote QA Manager (Dani)

The Loot Test was an amazing success. Thanks to everyone who helped make that happen. The Remote Playtesting Group will be pouring over the Harbinger by the time you read this, so a big thanks to those guys as well. Regular RQA folks have been kicking ass with hotfixes and helping eliminate various bug infestations.


Josh Isom, Community Manager (iamisom)

Super excited for The Harbinger Awakens update. Also, a new DD1 update came out yesterday! This is the first update from our Community Development Team, a passionate group of volunteer community members who are updating Ranked Mode. The update includes new towers, a new map, new loot and so much more. 

iamisom

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The Harbinger is preparing his invasion, and we're preparing an update worthy of this new threat. We've been hard at work on Loot V2, reducing the grind, and adding new content for you to enjoy. Find out more details on our new landing page.

The Harbinger Awakens on December 15th. We hope you enjoy the update. We've put a lot of blood, sweat and tears into it. (Mmm, delicious!) And don't forget: Join the Steam Group to unlock new galactic weapons. 

Love, 
The Trendy Team

iamisom

Patch 8.7 for Steam

The Harbinger Awakens update comes out next Tuesday! The update includes a new boss fight, Loot V2, reduced grind and many more bug fixes! In the meantime, this patch fixes the missing pet bugs that’s been reported to us on our forums and a few other minor changes.

Don’t forget:  Join the Steam Group to unlock new galactic weapons!

Bug Fixes

  • Fixed an issue where replacing an equipped item with another item will sometimes cause the item to go to the Scavenger. This issue was most noticeable with pets.

  • Fixed an issue where double-clicking to equip pets caused the Pet Bag to “be full.” This fix and the fix above should solve the issue where players were losing their pets.

  • Fixed an issue where players were able to get more green mana than intended by dropping.

  • Fixed an issue where skeleton goblins weren’t properly attacking the core on Temple of the Necrotic.

  • Changed text from 'Feed a Pet' to 'Feed any Pet.'

  • Fixed an issue where the pet evolution preview box would appear grey.
iamisom

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You crushed the first goal in just THREE DAYS of the Begin the Awakening event! Because of your efforts, you’ve unlocked the War Cache.

On December 15th when The Harbinger Awakens update comes out, the War Cache (disguised as a present) will be added to the Tavern. When you open it, a random legendary galactic weapon will be given to you. This weapon will roll based on the Item Power of the currently selected hero, but the weapon type inside is entirely random. Only one weapon will be given to you, but if you hit the future milestones, the cache will refresh and you’ll get another random galactic weapon!

The War Cache is a temporary item that will disappear sometime early next year. If you really want those galactic weapons permanently in the game, you’ll need to unlock them by joining the Steam Group!

The next unlock is the Squire’s Crystalline Saber at 125,000 members!

How To Help Begin the Awakening:

  1. Invite your Steam Friends! If everyone in the group invites at least one more friend, we’ll hit that goal in a day.

  • Step 1: Navigate to your Steam profile.

  • Step 2: Click the 'Friends' button.

  • Step 3: Have 'All Friends' tab selected and then click 'Manage Friends List'.

  • Step 4: Select all friends by clicking the 'All' button.

  • Step 5: Now that everyone is selected, click the 'Invite To Group' button and invite them to Dungeon Defenders II.

Tell players in-game to join and invite their friends!

Share it on Reddit and on forums!

Tweet about it!

Work together with your fellow Defenders! Players have made brainstorming hubs to help organize people.


Let’s work together to Begin the Awakening.

iamisom

Begin the Awakening


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The Harbinger is coming. His power is growing, and so must ours. Join the Steam Group to obtain legendary galactic weapons, and together, we will Begin the Awakening.

As a community, meet the milestones below to add the following items to the game beginning December 15th:


80,000 members:  

  • Open the War Cache!
  • Gain access to the War Cache (disguised as a present in the Tavern) and get one random legendary galactic weapon!


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125,000 members:  

  • Wield the Squire’s Crystalline Saber! 
  • This weapon will be added as a permanent drop to the game.

  • The War Cache will refresh, giving you another random legendary galactic weapon.


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175,000 members:  

  • Brandish the Huntress’ Bow-Blaster!
  • This weapon will be added as a permanent drop to the game.

  • The War Cache will refresh, giving you another random legendary galactic weapon.


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??? members:  

  • Command the Apprentice’s Blaster-Caster! 
  • This weapon will be added as a permanent drop to the game.

  • The War Cache will refresh, giving you another random legendary galactic weapon.


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??? members:  

  • Unleash the Monk’s Crystalline Twin-Blade! 
  • This will be added as a permanent drop to the game.

  • The War Cache will refresh, giving you another random legendary galactic weapon.


Go forth and spread the word to join the Steam Group to Begin the Awakening!

Notes:  When you open the War Cache, the legendary galactic weapon will roll based on the currently selected hero, but the weapon type inside is entirely random. And when you reach the milestone, the weapon is added as a drop to the game. You will not automatically receive one.

I_PASS_BUTTER



Join us today on our Twitch channel at 5PM EST for our Weekly Devstream! Brad and Steven will be answering your questions and revealing what we’ve got in store for you:


  • A sneak peak at the upcoming Besieged maps.

  • A reveal of our newest Harbinger build weapons and explain how they work, when to use them and why we must never, ever tell the Harbinger we have them.

  • Loot Changes: I will be playing (and dying) on the Loot Branch and Dan will explain the upcoming changes to the loot system.

  • New Holiday Tavern decorations and costumes. ‘Tis the season, people. We got Holiday Cheer coming out the yin-yang.

  • Showing off our newest pet: the Dragolich! Oh no, don’t look at it! It’s terrifying! Rawr…

  • Our Squire Boxer giveaway continues! Seriously, somebody get this guy a shirt or something. He’s making us look bad.

  • And our final, super-secret reveal...the Awakening Pack!

I_PASS_BUTTER

Our next update, The Harbinger Awakens, comes out Dec. 15th! We have our noses to the grindstone trying to make the best boss fight yet. There’s a lot of other highly requested changes coming in the update, including improved loot, an improved leveling experience in the Level 38-50 range and so, so much more. This week is feature/content lock, and then next week is Stabilization Week, which is when we flatten bugs and spitshine the new hotness.

Also, PS4 players just received the massive Loot & Survive update! The epic patch notes are available here. Now our PS4 team is gearing up for the next content update. Expect to hear more news about it early next year.

We’ve also started two new programs:  If you sign up for our newsletter, you’ll receive 200 free gems! Plus, if you join our Steam Group, you’ll be entered in for a chance to win 1,000 gems every week!

Here’s what we’ve been working on this week:


Jay Twining, Senior Game Designer (TrendyJayT)

They are an army unlike any other. A sea of green skin, metal armor and dark magics. Crusading across Etheria towards the Eternia Crystals. Driven by a disastrous goal - unlocking the veil. To release the Old Ones. Leading them, the Harbinger. It is up to you, Stalwart Defenders of Etheria, to push him back. To disrupt his nefarious plan. To rise together in defense of this land. Your land. Together we stand. Together we defend! TO ARMS!


Danny Araya, Creative Director (DannyAraya)

Running around like a madman as we get closer to the release!


Tim Shannon, PS4 Producer (TimmyTrashTier)

Content Update 1 came out this week, and there’s a couple other surprises in store for the near future, but the immediate term is kicking off the next milestone on PS4 and then heading out to San Francisco for PSX this weekend.


James Reid, Software Programmer (Driscan)

Working with design and marketing on a way to get some discounts for premium items to you.  Currently working on setting up Costumes, Inventory, and Premium Pets to be able to go on sale.  Working pretty closely with design and content on the actual look and feel of sales.  Also throwing some small tweaks to the inventory screen.


Jeffrey Bickel, Technical Level Designer (TE_Jeff)

This week is my last week of development on the Harbinger before we go into full bug-fixing mode. Still lots to do to get the fight feeling great across all the playlists, but our internal playtests have been invaluable in taking this fight to the finish line. Less than two weeks until you guys get your hands on him. I can’t wait to see the reaction!

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Steven Collins, Lead Level Designer (Esorath)

Working on getting everything together for the Harbinger. Also lots of fun balance updates making their way into the playlists. Making sure the winter maps are too chilly for everyone :D

But that cloaked figure tho….


Chris Flores, QA Lead (likethatwhenigothere)

Finishing up on the internal QA pass on the latest DD1 community update and starting testing on the new boss fight. As well as the rest of the MS20 content.


Joshua Javaheri, Lead Technical Artist (javahawk)

Hey out there! Putting the final touches on the holiday-themed events and a new adventure pack! It’s going to be an AWESOME winter!


Adam Stow, Associate Producer (TE_Stow)

Sometimes you’re working on a feature or piece of content and you just say to yourself "I could only be doing this if I worked in video games".  I’ve said that a lot lately...


Javier Barreto, Lead Software Programmer (javo)

I’m “overseeing” the development of the Harbinger; basically throwing some hints here and there to minimize future work/additions. The team really seems to like implementing big boss fights as this guy is getting done in record time.

As a base foundation for future bosses, there are some things that could (and probably will) need some restructuring, but given our schedule and it being the first (somewhat) iteration, it’s coming up pretty good.

Also doing my regular random code reviews… as strange and maybe silly as it sounds … this works! I get to catch requirement mishaps based on how things are implemented (this implies knowledge of all the requirements of all the features underway; this is accomplished by simply being attentive at feature reviews and whatnot; also standups).

While I’m not supervising the boss feature development, I’m consolidating our SKUs codebases (PC/PS4). This is a lot of work, and after all the major issues we’ve encountered with SVN, I would recommend not trying to keep two live (trunk) branches at a same time; when things go eerie, they escalate/cascade eerily.

Some final words:  Our team is growing. A couple of new engine programmers are helping us with our engine, and some of our Playverse team developers are also jumping into the fray fixing some of the matchmaking issues you guys have reported while also optimizing our services and making it more secure.

…there’s a lot going on. I hope you guys are enjoying the game, and as you do … bring a friend =D


Jesus Diaz, World Builder (N3oDoc)

Winter is coming...I've been working on the winter overlay for some levels, and now I'm currently working on the new Social Hub level. Time to expand the city!


Daniel Diaz, World Builder (DanielKaMi)

Really excited about how the Boss level is turning out! Did some work for the winter overlay on most of our levels and now working on the new Social Hub. It’s becoming a huge city!


Dani Moore, Remote QA Manager (Dani)

Assisting with the DD1 community push and tying up loose ends on our latest hotfix. Getting a feel for the Harbinger and the holidays content, and helping to ensure our final leg of the Loot Test goes smoothly.


Josh Isom, Community Manager (iamisom)

We’ve just started our newsletter gem program and our Steam Group raffles! Excited to have those up and running. Now I’m writing the flavor text for our Harbinger Update page, escalating some community requests for the milestone after this one and drooling over the new costumes. Y’all ain’t even ready for those.


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