It is time to finally announce the next expansion coming to Etheria — Dungeon Defenders II: Protean Shift! We’ve released information regarding this expansion and are ready to give a preview as to almost everything you can expect. The entire team has and still is working very hard to make sure this is a great experience for Defenders new and old. We’re going to cover some information posted in our DevLogs, as well as some new information, and how it all ties together. Let’s get to it!
This is our most foundational change in the update. When Protean Shift launches, you’ll notice that your gear’s stats looks much different than before. Our first change is making the damage from critical strikes scale off of the base damage for both your heroes and your towers. Critical Damage is no longer going to be a secondary stat, but is going to be a percentage increase that you can gain through Gear, Shards, and Ascension Levels. Because of the change to Critical Damage, the Critical Chance cap of 33% has been removed — the sky’s the limit now!
One of the goals of the Critical Damage change is to make damage more reliable. Critical Damage builds are still fun, but other playstyles should feel just as rewarding. Every hero and tower’s base damage has been increased to account for the changes made, making damage more consistent and allowing for even more unique builds!
Since we are changing how Critical Damage is understood, we decided to tackle another confusing area for players: Defense Speed. This stat is now a percentage instead of being numbers that go into the thousands. The change here allows players to understand exactly how much faster their defenses attack rate will increase.
This expansion really provides the opportunity to build how you want to, and gear is a huge reason. We wanted gear to feel more unique, instead of just giving you every stat whenever you received a legendary tier of gear. Now your gear and choices can reflect the kind of Defender you want to be.
Gear now has a primary stat and a secondary stat. For heroes, the stats vary depending on the piece of gear. On helmets, gloves, chest, and boots, the primary stat is Armor, and the secondary stat pulls from Health, Ability Power, or Hero Damage. On weapons, the primary stat is Hero Damage and the secondary stat can be Armor, Health, or Ability Power. As a reminder, base hero damage for their attacks and abilities was buffed to make sure your heroes feel comparably as powerful after Protean Shift releases compared to how powerful they currently are.
For towers, it varies as well. On totems, Defense Health is the primary stat and Defense Power is the secondary stat. Inversely on Medallions, Marks, and Orbs (if you still have any), Defense Power is the primary stat and Defense Health is the secondary stat. An additional reminder, we increased defenses base stats to try and retain the power your defenses currently possess. This leads us to M.O.D.S.
Professor Proteus applied his inventive intellect to all of the gear in Etheria! Magically Offense/Defensive Subroutines (M.O.D.S. or even simpler — Mods) are what allow you to make your gear your own! Mods can do everything from normal stat increases (Defense Speed, Critical Damage, Critical Chance) to less normal bonuses like stun immunity on Defenses. They even offer new ways to combat your foes! Want to:
Have towers immune to Hex Thrower curses? You can do that.
Pierce a Shield Geodes shield? You can do that.
Make your traps, auras, and nodes, immune to Cyborks?! You can do that!
Mods are an additional property on gear, similar to Shards. Mods compliment Shards and also unlock in a similar fashion, based on the quality of gear, and start appearing on Uncommon quality gear:
Uncommon: 1 Mod slot
Epic: 2 Mod slots
Mythical: 2 Mod slots
Legendary: 3 Mod slots
This means that a Legendary piece of gear now has two stats, three Mods, and empowers three Shard slots, making them truly Legendary. This is just the tip of the iceberg! Over 120 Mods are here to give you the chance to defend Etheria the way you want to. Some of these Mods are the result of community feedback as a unique and engaging way of tackling challenges set before you, the Defenders of Etheria.
Mods are something Professor Proteus added to gear, and what good would Mods be if you couldn’t modify them? That’s where Tinkering comes into the mix! Tinkering is the ability to move up to three Mods at a time from one piece of gear to another piece of the same type and Chaos tier or higher. This means that Mods on Chaos VII weapons can only be moved to another Chaos VII weapon, from one Chaos III helmet to another Chaos III (or higher) helmet, and so on. Once you transfer Mods from one piece of gear to another, the original piece is destroyed in the process.
Tinkering allows you to continuously mix and match your Mods to create the build you enjoy the most. The amount of customization that Tinkering offers truly lets you play how you want. It doesn’t stop there. When combined with our new Upgrading and Evolving features, even more choices await you, even potentially choosing the look of the weapon you want!
UPGRADING, ADVANCING, AND EVOLVING
Upgrading is a feature that many of you are well acquainted with, it’s the best way to squeeze extra power out of your gear. But this is Protean Shift, so it’s time to UPGRADE THE UPGRADE! You no longer max upgrade a piece of gear and wait for another piece of gear that’s a higher quality and/or Chaos tier to replace it. You can take that gear, and through the genius of Prof. Proteus, Advance that gear to the next tier!
Have an Uncommon piece of gear with the stats you want early on? You can now upgrade that piece to its max level and once it’s maxed, you can Advance that piece of gear into Epic quality. The same can be done to go from Epic to Mythical, and from Mythical to Legendary. This isn’t the only form of improving your gear, which is where Evolving comes in!
Evolving is icing on the gear permanence cake. Regardless of a piece of gear’s quality tier, you can choose to Evolve it to bring it through the various Chaos levels. With Evolving you can now choose to push a sword that you found in Chaos II all the way up to Chaos VII, and beyond!
Upgrading, Advancing, and Evolving applies to every piece of gear that drops — weapons, armor, and relics!
ADVENTURES AND EXPEDITIONS
We’re adding in additional ways for both new and veteran Defenders to play! The Campaign is now different than many of you experienced in the past. After completing the Campaign, Defenders can now take on Adventures! These let you choose specific side stories to progress and prepare for the challenges that await you in Expeditions, Onslaught, Mastery, and Incursions provide.
Map choice, map choice, MAP CHOICE! Something many have wanted is now here. The Chaos Trials are finished, and Defenders can now go on Expeditions throughout various Chaos difficulties. Do you have one favorite map to play, and just want to play that one as you progress through different Chaos difficulties? Now you can!
Expeditions also provide the ability to acquire different materials needed for new systems being added, such as Evolving and Tinkering. Different types of maps drop different specific materials as you play through a map and as you complete them. You can choose to farm for a specific material on a specific map, or play random maps that offer more materials. These materials are earned as you play a map and when victory is yours!
Shards are a great way to really increase the power of the heroes you play. Some players enjoy playing only a few select hero, so it can be a real bummer if you get Shards for heroes that don’t fit your play style. Now you can take any unwanted shards and break them down into dust through Shard Dusting. You can take the Shard Dust from unwanted shards and trade them in for Chaos equivalent Shard Packs to have another try at getting the shard you want. You can use this process to help work towards getting the shards.
All our gear is getting the ability to be pushed past its limits, so it’s only fitting that Shards get the ability to as well. When you Gild Shards, you combine Shards of the same kind to unlock additional upgrade levels. This is a focus for end-game players to grab additional power in order to take on the challenges that Onslaught, and also protect their shards from being reset when attaining Ancient Power!
Professor Proteus is a man of intellect, sophistication, and style. In Protean Shift every hero is receiving their own special weapons, with their own special appearances! Some of these weapons not only look legendary, but contain legendary power in the form of unique Mods. These Mods are found on the Prestigious weapons gained from attaining Ancient Power, though that’s not the only way to get them!
Player Shops and Markets
In Protean Shift, gear is no longer magically locked to each Hero Deck. Professor Proteus has slightly alleviated the restrictions that existed previously.
All Defenders will be able to list their items for sale on their own personal Player Shops. Most items that have not been altered in some way (think Upgraded/Evolved/etc.) will be available to post on your shop! You will be able to browse all the Player Shops from the Player List on the Pause Menu. Feel free to shop to your heart's content!
In addition to creating your own Shop, you’ll be able to enter the new Markets. From the War Table, you can browse lists of open Markets and choose which to join. Markets are themed for the various types of items that can be sold, but you can still freely sell any item of your choice while you’re there. If you don’t see a Market of the item type that you’re looking for, you can always just Quickmatch and it will automatically create one for you!
The Final Bean
We’ve been spilling the beans for a while now, and there’s one last bean that we have to spill — the release date. Dungeon Defenders II: Protean Shift is releasing on June 19th on PlayStation 4, Steam, and Xbox One! This release is very close to one year since we’ve released, and there’s more to come.
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We’ve got one more Devstream to show off more stuff coming with Dungeon Defenders II: Protean Shift. Thank you for defending Etheria with us, there’s only more to come. Stay tuned!
The Dungeon Defenders II Team