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iamisom

Dungeon Defenders II is available now on Steam Early Access! Get it here!



We can’t wait to dive into all of your new feedback. After you’ve played, please let us know what you think on our forums! And remember, after you’ve played, use your Influence Points to vote on the upcoming Daily Mission system here. If you didn’t catch our forum post about Influence and what it is, check it out on this thread. We’ll be posting more about this system (and possibly re-posting that thread!) to this blog as we continue development on it.

If you aren’t still busy playing Dungeon Defenders II later tonight, be sure to tune into The Game Awards tonight at 9 PM EST for a special announcement! 

LaurawantsaCow

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Dungeon Defenders II is coming to PAX East!

That’s right! From April 11th to 13th, the Trendy Team is heading to Boston, and we’re bringing the latest build of Dungeon Defenders II with us. We’ve been hard at work making tons of additions and improvements since our showing at NYCC, and we can’t wait for you to see them!

Stop by Booth [[4431,hashtags]] to play the game on one of our 16 stations, enter to win some awesome swag, and say hello to the team!

Test Your Skills and Win Prizes:
Bring your friends and try out two new maps on our custom Alienware gaming rigs. Earn raffle tickets and enter to win a Razer headset or mouse in one of our daily giveaways. Defenders can complete a special challenge at the booth to win an exclusive prize!

Get Some DD2 Goodies:
We also have tons of exclusive DD2 merch for sale. And don’t forget to pick up a raffle ticket when you stop by! We’ll be giving away plenty of T-shirts, mousepads, art prints, and more.

Hang Out With the Dev Team:
A large portion of the Trendy team will be making the trek to Boston to meet our fans. Whether you’re just dropping by to say hi or you have specific questions about our game, feel free to talk to any of us at the booth.

We can’t wait to see all of you on the PAX show floor!

The random winner of our Perils of an Uneven World blog is happyguy3216!

Leave a comment to get your hands on the Dungeon Defenders II pre-alpha. We’ll pick a random poster and reveal the winner in our next blog post!
iamisom

Devstream 53 Recap



In yesterday’s Devstream, Phil, Elliot and Josh revealed new changes coming to the Hero Deck, new gameplay changes, new Abyss Lord details and some upcoming UI changes! Here’s an overview of the stream (with timestamps courtesy of CharrLegion on YouTube):


  • New Abyss Lord Minion Reveal:  Bone Archers (7:40):

    • Long-range sniper tower that can see and attack in two directions at the same time, allowing it to cover multiple lanes. The Abyss Lord’s Direct Command will make the Bone Archer unleash a rapid-fire volley of death.

  • Abyss Lord Abilities (9:25):

    • Direct Command:

      • The Abyss Lord’s signature move. Use Direct Command on your minions to activate devastating attacks. Direct Command will make the Abyss Lord a powerful ally during Combat Phase.

    • Summon Abyss Stone:

      • Short-term, area-of-effect pulsing mine ability. Place up to three at a time down the length of a lane of stack them in an area -- your choice.

    • Knights of the Abyss:

      • The Abyss Lord summons a fallen soldier from the spirit world to stun, knockback and damage enemies in an area.

  • Hero Deck/Gameplay Changes (23:50):

    • What’s Releasing in the Update:

      • New User Interface, Hero Cards:  

        • We’re starting our UI revamp beginning with the Pause Menu and Hero Deck screens. Hero Cards will display your hero’s iPWR, name, level, title and costume. You can easily view other player’s decks, iPWR and gear. We’ve also made it easier to manage your party.

      • Shared Hero Deck Experience:  

        • All cards in your deck will gain XP together!

    • What We’re Working On:

      • Quickswap Heroes (F1 - F4):

        • Quickswap between your heroes using hotkeys! We’re excited to get this highly requested feature into the game. :)

      • Combat Phase Quickswapping:

        • We’re going to experiment with letting players quickswap between the four decked heroes during Combat Phase.

      • Strategic Revamp (Prototype):

        • Working on changes to defenses and enemies to improve the strategy of the game, beginning with removing Physical/Magical resistances and revamping towers/enemies to have more defined strengths and weaknesses. More details soon.

    • What We Will Be Working On:

      • Swap Into Deck During Build Phase:

        • We're going to experiment with letting you swap heroes in and out of your deck during Build Phase, which will let you bring more than four heroes into a match. Only heroes in your deck will gain XP, get loot and be available for Combat Phase hotswapping. We haven't figured out all of the details, but that's the overall idea.

      • Loot For All Heroes In Deck:

        • Loot will drop for heroes in your deck.


What do you think of these changes? Let us know in the comments below!
LaurawantsaCow

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We’re over halfway through our pre-release hero reveals, and we hope you’re getting pumped to step back into the world of Etheria! Thanks to your feedback, this month’s hero reveal showcases a favorite of many: The Monk!

From a young age, the Monk was trained in techniques that would aid his allies. That focus on support has only grown over the years. Not only does he use a combination of auras and abilities to truly embrace his role as the steadfast support hero, but he also fills a powerful niche in Dungeon Defenders II, being one of the strongest anti-air heroes in the game.

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Team Goblin’s Blasting Off Again!

In the original Dungeon Defenders, the Monk’s abilities had multiple functions to support his teammates. His new ability Chi Blast continues to build on this, as it does two very important and distinct things. When it passes through a defense, it significantly buffs that defense’s damage for a brief period of time. And when it hits enemies, it knocks them back. This allows you to jump behind a well-guarded choke point and fire off a Chi Blast to boost the defenses and push enemies away, giving you a chance to repair. Or you could just engage in the Trendy team’s favorite past-time--blasting Orcs off ledges.

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The Chain Will Keep Us Together

Though he’s capable of great versatility, the core of his toolkit revolves around Auras, which make up all but one of his defenses. Boost Aura, inspired by the Monk’s Defense Boost ability in the original Dungeon Defenders, links together defenses in its radius, granting them extra damage and health. Should a linked defense fall, the rest of the defenses in the Aura’s radius are healed. Boost Aura is great for any choke point, but it’s especially helpful in lanes with Ogres, as juggernaut minibosses have a pesky habit of decimating anything in their path.

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Can’t Take the Sky From Him

While Auras are a staple of the Monk’s toolkit, his new Skyguard Tower fills a vital role as one of the strongest anti-air defenses in the game. Air units in Dungeon Defenders are no joke, and the Skyguard has three rotating cannons that take them out with ease, firing concentrated bursts of Chi energy at anything airborne. This includes ground enemies that are hurled into the air by abilities or defenses such as the Huntress’ Geyser Trap!

With three heroes down, we hope you’re planning some awesome combo strategies! Tell us about them in the comments below and you could win a seat on the Defense Council!

The random winner of our Dragonfall Lore blog is Koyre!

Leave a comment to get your hands on the Dungeon Defenders II pre-alpha. We’ll pick a random poster and reveal the winner in our next blog post!
iamisom

Sad News

Greetings Defenders,

Today is an incredibly sad day at Trendy. Roughly 20% of our Trendy family were laid off. We’re working with an outplacement team to make sure that everyone is taken care of, and we’re providing financial assistance and extended benefits to those affected. You can read more about the news here.

We’re very grateful for their hard work and dedication, which you will forever see in Dungeon Defenders II and the other projects we are working on. We hope to see them land on their feet soon. Wherever they land will be lucky to have them.

Some of you will have questions about this situation that we unfortunately cannot answer at this time. Instead, we ask you to use this thread to say goodbye and good luck to the members of Trendy who are no longer with us.
iamisom



Series EV2 has landed! For a full look at our newest hero, check out the trailer above!

Now that EV2 is here, our team is working on the next big changes to the game. Over the coming weeks, expect to learn more about our new Server Browser, new Incursions, new Weapons, a new Enemy, major balance changes to the four original heroes, and our next Hero, the Gun Witch.

We can’t wait to share more details. Together, we’re making Dungeon Defenders II better.

Love,
The Trendy Team


Features

  • New Hero:  Series EV2!

    • For a full overview of her defenses and abilities, check out her landing page!

    • Available for 12,000 Defender Medals for the first two weeks, and then 10,000 Defender Medals after that.

  • New EV2 Costume:  Mantis Striker

    • EV2 becomes one with nature. But not the peaceful, let's-hold-hands, cherished-childhood-memories nature. Oh no. We're talking weird, bug-like, aggressive nature. Creepy nature.

    • Accent colors changed based on the canister you have equipped!

  • New Summary Screen

    • Updated the Summary Screen to our new UI format.

    • This is Phase One of making a Summary Screen that doesn’t look like a hot mess. In the future, we’ll add in all of the fancy-schmancy game stats.

  • Loading Screen and Summary Screen Tips

    • Added "Pro Tips" to these two screens. Some tips are more pro than others.

    • These will be updated in the next patch or two to include tips from the community!

  • Tutorial Missions

    • Added Defender Medals to the first Daily Missions unlocked during Campaign.


Balance

  • Can no longer place any towers on Harbinger’s Phase 4 area.


Bug Fixes

  • Hotswapping while in the Inventory will now update the equipped gear and hero icon at the bottom of the Inventory screen.

  • Fixed an issue where tower types were incorrect in the Inspect Defense tooltip. For example, Archers and Ramsters said blockade, while Skeletal Orcs and the Colossus said traps.

  • Fixed a lingering magical resistance lane in Forest Crossroads NM4 Incursion.

  • Fixed a stuck flying enemy issue on Dragonfall Sewers.

  • Fixed a stuck flying enemy issue on Temple of the Necrotic.

  • The Monk’s Crystalline Twin-Blades are now purple instead of white as they should be.

  • Fixed an issue where flying lane billboards were not appearing and disappearing correctly on Temple of the Necrotic.

  • Fixed an accessory icon issue.

  • Lockbox Bugfix Pass

    • Huntress Lockbox now contains Simple Leather Dress

    • Monk Lockbox now contains Jade Fluid Harness and Barrier Harness

    • Apprentice Lockbox now contains Fancy Traveler's Hat

    • Monk Lockbox no longer contains Reaver Marking

    • Squire Lockbox no longer contains two Battle Helms


Known Issues

  • Keybindings get reset during our updates.

  • Fatal error crashes are happening with more frequency since the Unholy Catacombs update. Fixing this and other crashes are at the top of our priority list right now. We’ll have more information over the coming weeks.

  • Weapon rewards in Onslaught mode are not locked to the active hero.

  • Under certain situations, EV2’s torso can face the wrong direction.

  • The Inspect Defense for several towers displays irrelevant information.

  • Under certain conditions, the Steady Aim challenges will unlock despite not meeting the requirements.

  • Using EV2’s Death from Above ability with the Dummies and Bots Skill Sphere equipped can cause a Health Bar displaying the cores health to appear.

  • The Anti-Gravity Bots created by using the Death from Above ability with the Dummies and Bots Skill Sphere equipped won’t explode if EV2 is hotswapped out during the ability.

  • Clicking the reroll option for Daily Missions but not actually selecting a new Daily Mission will still consume the ability to reroll a mission.

  • If a player loads into a map after the Mana Nodes have already been opened, the Mana Nodes will still appear on the minimap for the player who joined in.

  • Inspect Defense can be activated on a tower from a very, very far distance away.

  • The muzzle flash from the Apprentice’s default weapon will not play at the correct location.

  • Flying Kobolds do not play their death animation when killed by EV2.

  • If you overheat in the Taverns with EV2 and then try to activate Death from Above, you will not be able to bring down EV2’s heat by firing her primary or secondary attacks. Can correct this by trying to activate another of her abilities.

  • Towers that are upgraded while being buffed by EV2’s Buff Beam lose their green “Buffed” VFX.

  • The Torpedo burst from EV2’s Reflect Beam will linger if sold/destroyed at certain situations.

  • Changing accessories for EV2’s Mantis Striker costume equipped with cause her VFX to appear in different colors.

  • When there is no available DU on a map, EV2’s tower icons will not darken out like other heroes.

  • Under certain situations, the “attacking” VFX on EV2’s Proton Beams will not stop playing when an enemy is no longer being affected by the Proton Beam.

  • Enemies can get stuck coming out of the East Dock lane in Nightmare instances of Ramparts.

  • When double-clicking to equip a piece of equipment, the comparison tooltips will not update correctly.

iamisom

Influence Report 3

Senior Producer Brad Logston and Creative Director Danny Araya discuss the balance/progression changes coming in the next content update, which is tentatively scheduled for the end of this month. They also discuss potential Commander Incursion ideas and the results of our Lore Initiative! 



iamisom

Patch 6.3 is here! This patch contains the first of our planned Inventory 3.0 changes that Dan mentioned in his blog last week. Expect more improvements in the near future!

Features

  • Bags can now be marked for Auto Collect!

    • At the end of the match, all items left on the ground will attempt to go into any bags marked Auto Collect.

    • Items of the highest rarity are collected first. Items within the same rarity that have the highest Item Power are then grabbed.

    • When you manually pick up an item, it goes into bags that are not marked Auto Collect until full. When those bags are full, items are sent to the Auto Collect bags.

  • Added HUD elements to display when Auto Collect bags are 70% full, 90% full and completely Full.

  • Added Auto Collect popup messages on the Matchmaking UI warning players if their bags are 70%, 90% or completely Full.

    • Added a “Do not show me again” toggle to these popups

    • Added an option on the Options menu to reset hidden popups.


Bug Fixes

  • Improvements have been made to prevent an issue where players faced long loading screens before erroring while matchmaking. We're still working to fix all of our matchmaking/server issues!

  • Potentially fixed an issue with the Flameburst Tower VFX.

  • Fixed an issue with the Serenity Aura.


Known Issues

  • Network instability is our #1 technical issue focus. Our team is working to fix the lag, disconnects and loading screen issues. We’ll have more updates in future patches/hotfixes.
[CG] LAWLTA

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Greetings Defenders and Happy Holidays!

I hope everyone has been enjoying our most recent update, Drakenfrost! It was definitely a new experiment into how we deliver content, and I can’t wait to see all the feedback about it. How did you feel about our recent release of the Drakenlord? Let us know your thoughts in this thread!

I didn’t come here entirely for feedback… I may have an ulterior motive… to deliver some tremendous news!

I have recently been promoted to Creative Director on the Dungeon Defenders team!

I’ll be leading the direction of Dungeon Defenders into the future with the help of our amazing team!

We’re going to make the changes that you, our Defenders, want to see. We’ll also be able to make even more exciting new content and features for Dungeon Defenders II than we ever have before.

But what does this mean for the players?

Well let’s recap a little bit. I started as a community member, Caster’s Guild streamer, and Dungeon Defenders player. My tenure at Trendy started off with an internship that grew into an Associate Producer position, where I was eventually able to mold and shape some of our most recent updates - for example Protean Shift, Isle of Dread, and the Drakenfrost update.  

Josh comes into all of this with deep knowledge of the original Dungeon Defenders title, the aspects of it that players enjoyed, and is a master of the technical arts.  

Our primary goal and focus is to build upon recent successes through continuing to evolve DD2 into the game we all know it can and should be.

So what are some of the things we’re thinking about?

We’re looking at our pain points:

We’ve been improving Ancient Power since its release and we know that everyone is still not as stoked about it as we were hoping.  In 2019 we will continue to iterate and expand upon this feature until it hits the mark we’re all hoping for.

We also know there are some Inventory pain points that players have with stacking Shards, amount of free space, and clunky navigation. We’ve already made significant improvements to finding Mods and sorting your inventory, but we’re always looking at doing more to make it easier and easier.

In the near future:

We’re looking at expanding our elemental combo system. The goals for this are to add intuitive and interesting combinations between damage types, setting you up for some mad alchemy with new and beefier elemental interactions (what if poison exploded when hit with fire damage?).  Elemental interactions entered Dungeon Defenders II before our Free-to-Play launch and while our old plans to expand upon them have grown dusty on the shelf, I have never forgotten how excited they made me about the potential for DD2. We want to rekindle that excitement and realize this feature’s potential.

We’re also looking at acquisition methods for all of your loot and rewards in the game. We know people are looking for specific Shards, 10/10 Qualibean™ MODS, crafting materials, re-roll items...basically all the things. Our new Lead Designer (Mark Telfer) has made appeasing you his primary goal in life and loot acquisition is where he’s decided to start. Much like with recent changes to MOD roll and drop rates, your feedback will be essential to this process — so keep reaching out and letting us know your thoughts.


In the slightly farther future:

We’re looking at creating a better “purpose for play.” Some people call this a “chase” in a game. We know some people enjoy getting to high floors of Onslaught, and some enjoy getting fully kitted out with Chaos VIII gear, Gilded Shards, all Ancient Powers, etc. but we also know that we can do even better than that.

We want our players to have a more meaningful reason for getting all the new loot and levels in our progression systems. One avenue we’ve been playing with is an “ultimate boss” style encounter. The Lost Eternia Shard DLC packs proved the concept for the franchise, and we are currently exploring ways we can hit that emotional high-point in the contemporary DD2 format.  Modern MMO’s and RPG’s have taken big strides when it comes to designing boss fights and we’re looking to mirror their modern, elegant style.

There’s also an ongoing conversation about adding additional ways to acquire heroes and premium currency via gameplay. We really want to make sure that all our players are feeling adequately rewarded for playing our game. We’re going take a look at what our Gem purchases and pricings are like, and evaluate ways that we can make these more “player-first.”

We’re here to make a dope experience for you, and we’re going to double-down on that as our direction moving forward.  (My first act as Creative Director was to declare “we’re going to make dope s***” as the new modus operandi.)


Real Talk:

We have a small, but dedicated team working on delivering Dungeon Defenders to everyone in the best way that we know how. We’re people (just like you!) making a free to play game, so there will always be monetization and occasionally we’ll make some mistakes with features.  Additionally, change does not always occur at the speed at which you wish it would. We have processes for improving, but they remain what they are — a process. That being said, our ultimate goal is always to make a game that you guys want to play, and to continue to experiment with finding new and interesting content and release methods.

Do not forget that each and every one of you are an essential part of DD2 now and the shape of what it becomes in the future. Continue to give us all your feedback, opinions, and ideas using the appropriate methods.

We’ll do our best to fix bugs, add content, and provide new features to the game as we keep developing in 2019.

Join me, and the entire team, in making Dungeon Defenders II, and all our future Dungeon Defenders games, into the best games they can possibly be.

Sincerely,

Colin “Elandrian” Fisher and the entire Dungeon Defenders II Team.

iamisom


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Josh Isom, Community Manager (iamisom)

The second round of our New Hero Vote is underway! This vote is between the Lavamancer and the Barbarian. So far, we’re on track to surpass the first vote in total points invested. Remember:  It’s about how many points a hero has after all three rounds, so it ain’t over ‘til it’s over! Go vote!

Also:  All of our new heroes will be 12,000 Medals for two weeks only. After two weeks, the Defender Medal cost will go down to 10,000 Medals. :D

P.S.  Next Devstream is on April 15th!

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Elliot Cannon, Creative Director

Abyss Lord! One down another 100 to go! I’m super proud of the team for shipping our first new hero! This is a huge accomplishment, especially after having to streamline the studio, the nasty water flood, plus getting PS4 caught up to the Dragonfall Carnival. We did not really get started until February 16th or so. This is our first stab at the UI Hero Deck improvements since we pitched it on December 20th. Like anything new, it’ll take lots of refinement and constant improvement to get perfect, but it’s a great start and a lot dev team members worked very, very, very, hard on their piece of the big thing to make it cool.

We have unsung heroes in house and remote who don’t always appear here in our dev logs. QA testers, artists, programmers, our one IT dude, Ice (he calls it a department) all of which are either making awesome new stuff or fixing/tracking down complicated issues that would make Einstein’s nose blow a gasket. General Patton once said, "The soldier is the army." It’s true. Here’s a shout out to ALL the Dungeon Defenders II dev team members here for winning this first battle. I’m proud of ya.

I’m stoked so many of you are using hero swapping in combat in cool ways and loving what I’m seeing on streams. Remember, this is a live game. We have a mega-ton of more things to do, fix up, improve, add, and refine. We’re just really getting started. Please keep the feedback coming. Feedback does not have to be happy-happy joy-joy, but feedback driven by a passion for FUN gaming is super motivating for us. We may be a small studio, but we really want the game to be cool for you. That’s why we do this job to be honest.

We’re honing in on the details coming for the next milestone. EV2 is already animated! I just finished playing the Unholy Catacombs map (Foundries & Forges) in Steve’s playtest, and I love the layout and limited visibility. We have plans for a nasty tank, a cool new over-the-top monk costume, a new thematic weapon, more UI updates and improvements, the strategic refactor (This is a BIG one!), the next hero, skill spheres coolification, enchantment awesominjectioness. TONS of stuff! We’re making sure to stage stuff out and want to do so we can get a release to you guys really soon. We know it was a long one since the Dragonfall Carnival, so know that we agree.

We’re watching the New Hero Influence votes like a hawk. Don’t forget that’s a multi-round thing so every vote along the way adds towards the final tally. Long one from me. Check out ‏Elandrian’s picture he drew. Mad Skillz.

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Tim Shannon, PS4 & Live Producer (TimmyTrashTier)

Patches and hotfixes… patches and hotfixes…  I’ve been trying to stay out in front of issues on the Carnival Update for PS4. We have a hotfix coming out early next week that should fix some of the most egregious issues. Other than that we’re just starting in on MS22 planning and development.

PC side, the Live Team is doing its thing and squashing bugs and patching problems. Expect more in the coming weeks!


Steven Collins, Lead Level Designer (Esorath)

Aw snap! Carnival going down on PS4 and Abyss Lord Shenanigans on PC. Tons of cool things incoming.  It’s really awesome to see everyone having fun experimenting with new builds with their new-found resistance freedom.


Daniel Diaz, World Builder (DanielKaMi)

So finally we are gladly to say that Glitterhelm remake level is coming to its end this week! (In terms of world building.) We’re ensuring it comes with a bunch of skulls, bones, cobwebs and more nightmarish stuff! Also we have some really cool plans for the next two levels. Really excited about them!

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Jesus Diaz, World Builder (N3oDoc)

Like Daniel said, we are almost done with the Glitterhelm level. Just adding now some nice touches!

Hopefully next week we’ll share with you some pics of what could be the next level!


Dan Pingston, Character Artist

Glad to see people having fun with the Abyss Lord. Now on to the next one.

[CG] LAWLTA

Greetings Defenders,

In our most recent Devstream we announced that the Barbarian is making his glorious return to defend Etheria once more. His return is something Defenders waited for a long time, and he’s bringing some great features with him:

  • New Hero: The Barbarian, a whirlwind of wrath and fury!

  • New User Experience:  New Defenders are thrown into the action of defending Etheria!

  • Shard Slot overhaul to spend less time in your inventory and more time on the battlefield!

  • Item Progression rework to increase power and knowledge of the gear you acquire!

We recently discussed the changes to the shard system and our item progression during our last Devstream (check it out here). Our latest Devstream recapped that information and also showed off the might and power of the Barbarian in all his glory! This update included a lot of work to create this new Hero and make some much anticipated changes to core systems of the game. Let’s get started!


Alec Saare, Community Manager (Lawlta)

Since working at Trendy, there have been two things that our brave, powerful, and passionate community of Defenders have wanted for a long time: The Barbarian and a way to track gear strength. Everything in this update has been affected directly by the feedback and desires that all of provide, and we’re very grateful for your help in making the game better as a result.

Creating The Barbarian was an amazing process to be a part of. We went from having a base design, and overhauling him completely to crank his epicness up to 11! There was a huge goal of capturing the spirit of the Barbarian from Dungeon Defenders 1 and turbo-charging that spirit. The result is a whirlwind of wrath and fury that is both an immovable object and an unstoppable force. HE. IS. A. BEAST.

With his arrival is something as a player I am stoked to see in the game — gear and shard changes. As someone who has gained Ancient Power and is climbing Onslaught, not having to move shards combined with the changes to gear progression and visibility feels so great! You’ll experience yourself very soon.

The introduction to Dungeon Defenders II is also vastly different than before. Our veteran Defenders are not exposed to this area of the game, but we noticed a lot of newer players were not getting pumped up with the original tutorial and so we set out to improve tenfold! Now new Defenders experience action from the get go, with a certain dragon really setting the pace of the rest of the game.

We cannot wait for all of you to really sink your teeth into this meaty update!


Colin Fisher, Associate Producer (Elandrian)

Hey everyone, just a quick update from me. I have been making larger posts recently about upcoming features so the Dev Log won’t have TOO many tidbits… but I’d like to give everyone some pieces to start thinking about. There’s some areas of our game that we’re planning to improve, so I’d like to clue you in on what those are. I’m sure I’ll have mentioned some of them before, but I’d just like to reiterate what we’re looking into next.

We’re looking at ways to store items, ways to create and customize existing items, ways to exchange items, and ways to enhance items. Did I mention that we’re heavily looking into making items more interesting? We have some features that we’re planning, but we’ll reveal more specifics about them at a later date. There’s a lot of ways we want to make the game more engaging and interesting to players, while also figuring out a plan to continue rolling out new content like maps, costumes, heroes and such. We’re a small team, so finding that balance between improving areas of the game while also adding content is a challenge.

We appreciate our community that are playing, giving feedback, and even just following our updates on the site, forums and social outlets. Can’t wait to tell you guys about what’s to come, so stay tuned!

Eric Petire, QA Designer (Petire)

Being a Dungeon Defenders player and playing a ton of Barbarian in the past, I wanted to bring the visceral gameplay of jumping across the map at rapid speed while also clearing hordes of enemies and wiping bosses off the map with a speed second to none. One of my goals was to bring back the stances that made the Barbarian so much fun to play, flying between lanes and destroying any enemy.

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He is meant to have some of the strongest and most fun abilities to use that require an active playstyle to have his damage reach its highest potential. Many different ideas were thrown around to allow players to interact with other players or other heroes/defenses; the end result is we wanted the Barbarian to be focused on just absolutely demolishing the hordes of monsters you face. This means that instead of being able to buff others, he can debuff enemies in some fun and unique way for other heroes and defenses to interact with.


Daniel Driussi, 3D Character Artist

I was recently hired at Trendy, and I am very excited to be here! When I started there was a working model of the Barbarian that was already modeled and textured by the previous character artist. Likewise this older barbarian was fully playable, but it did not meet the new look that we were trying to achieve. So my first task here was to model and texture the “New” Barbarian.


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(Untextured progression of the Barbarian’s 3D model.)

The process to create the 3D model of the Barbarian consists of a couple of steps.  First, I took the concept art into Zbrush and quickly made a body. Then I took that into Maya to complete the rest of the modeling and created the clothing and armor. Many iterations went into making sure everything worked properly.

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(Textures for the Barbarian’s head and torso.)

From that point, I took the model into 3D Coat and Photoshop to paint the textures.  My biggest hurdle that I faced in getting the “style” of the textures of the barbarian was matching the look of Dungeon Defenders.


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(Texture progression and 3D model changes of the Barbarian.)

This took a lot of work, but I am glad to say that the hurdle was vaulted and the Barbarian looks awesome next to all the other characters in game. Now that he is finished, I really enjoy seeing this hulking mass of muscles, that I helped to get into this game, glide through combat like a beautiful murder ballerina!

Keith "Keithimator" Walheim, Animator

Hey Defenders! Rage, wrath and sheer power were just a few of the words going through my head while animating the Barbarian. Oh, and SMAAAAAAAASH! He is definitely not a dainty ballerina, but he is still quite an agile character. I would say one of the greatest challenges while animating this human tank was moving all that muscle mass around while making him quick enough to react for the Defender playing him. One way we approached this was to really focus on emphasizing the weight shift in his shoulders.


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(Various reaction animations)

Some of my favorite animations that I got to work on for this bad boy were the death animation (finding interesting ways to make characters meet their demise can be fun), and the stances.


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(Death Animation for the Barbarian.)

The four stances were challenging because of the animation needed to depict the functionality of the stance in a split second, while still showing the weight of this huge character. One of the animations that I had the most fun with was a one armed handstand pushup that unfortunately didn’t make it into the game, but you can see it here.


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(The Barbarian staying in shape.)

There is one thing related to the Barbarian I got to animate that I feel makes playing him a whole lot more interesting, the enemy death animations. Each time the Barbarian smashes a Kobold, Goblin, or Javelin thrower they will — well, give him a try and see what happens. Run, don’t walk!


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(Run cycles by John Muscarella, Lead Animator)

Jose Villegas, Technical Designer (TrendyJose)

Hey Everyone! Since last update I have been ESSENTIALLY focused on various Quality of Life improvements. Chief amongst those is the revamp of the previous iPwr system. In theory, iPwr should have been a good indicator to know how strong an item is, but in practicality it didn’t reflect that. You could have an uncommon item drop alongside a legendary item and both of them would have similar iPwr, but because the legendary had multiple stats, it seemed to be way better. This led people into equipping lower iPwr items by trying to maximize their stats.

This also led to the ‘muling’ issue many of you are aware of. Since the highest iPwr of your heroes would determine the drops you see in the game, you were encouraged to have a throw-away character to get the best drops.


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GearScore is the solution we came up for both issues. A piece of equipment’s GearScore value is determined after evaluating every single element of what makes it strong. That is the value of the item’s stats, the number of Shard slots it will enable, and the number of secondary stats it has. Like we mentioned in the Devstream, GearScore should give you the certainty that an item with a greater GS value is overall better than a lower one. Of course, if you are pursuing a certain strategy, you are encouraged to play the game your own way and ignore GS.

Alongside this, I want to say under no ambiguity: Muling is dead. The gear that we are dropping in the game has no relation, whatsoever, with what you have equipped, or what’s even in your inventory. The strength of the items that you see in DD2 is tied to your progression. The more you play, the stronger items you will see, across all game modes. Of course, each game mode and difficulty has a ceiling of the strength at which items may drop, so you are encouraged to always keep pushing higher.

On a different note, we also brought some improvements to Shard management. We want you to keep playing the game with the least amount of interruptions as possible, so we decided to streamline the Shard equipping process. Now shards will be tied to Gear Slots, instead of Gear. This will allow you to naturally equip better Gear, without having to move your Shards around to keep your same build. These Shards improvements come with inventory adjustments to the UI so you can quickly equip and unequip shards.

Anyhow, I’m sure these new systems will allow you to keep doing what you like to do the most: blasting goblins and building towers. I’m more than happy to listen to your feedback, post on our forums and I will see it. Happy defending =).

Mark Telfer, Technical Designer (TrendyMark)

Hey Defenders! From this day forward, I am officially taking all noobies under my wing!  Since the Power of the Ancients update, I’ve been hard at work revamping the new user experience (NUE) of Dungeon Defenders II. Our goal was to make the first hour of the campaign exciting, informative, and most importantly, a showcase for what makes Dungeon Defenders II special.

Over the past couple of months we’ve brought testers into our studio and watched them play both the current tutorial level and the first hour of the campaign. These tests revealed that many people were confused about how to interact with some of the fundamental systems of DD2.  Players were having a hard time understanding how to interact with gear that was dropping, they were forgetting to go to the green mana chests, and worst of all, many didn’t realize you could swap between different heroes!

It was clear that the new user flow needed an overhaul. The approach we took involved creating immediate stakes for players by throwing them straight into the action-packed combat of DD2.  We also wanted to incrementally introduce the foundational systems of the game so that players could fully appreciate their intricacies. Finally, we wanted to present each mechanic in a way that is concise, clear, and within context that demonstrated its value.

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(Behind the scenes of the new user experience)

After many late nights and frequent focus group testing of our work, I am very pleased to announce that my self esteem remains (mostly) intact and that our new user experience will be dropping “sooner than you expect.” Happy defending!

Love,

Mark

P.S.

All of the designers read every single forum post. Keep the awesome feedback coming.


Dani Moore, Remote QA Lead

Our testing groups had fun putting the early Barbarian through his paces. The ability to combine stances made for some interesting discovery of combinations, but also some interesting bugs and balance issues over the course of testing.

The new shard slots were immediately pounced upon as a solid quality of life addition by most of the testing folks, and  thankfully didn't present too many issues.

We're also looking to expand our tester pool once again. Our testers get the chance to try out our still-in development work, in exchange for some cool stuff as a thanks. They help us with balance, feedback and bugs and their contributions to our releases are very valuable.

We have two teams, RQA - our daily bug hunters (for folks with lots of free time each day), and RPG - our larger team for balance and feedback (for folks with limited free time).

If you are interested, drop me an email at dani.moore @ trendyent (dot) com and ask. I'm happy to provide more information on both teams to see what best suits. A big thanks to everyone involved in the Barbarian and the heaps of work and sweat that went into it all.

admin
Co-op Confidential -- Overworld

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We saw your posts in our forums. We read your comments on YouTube. You want more information on the cooperative tower defense campaign.

We’re more than happy to oblige.

Every Monday, we’re going to slowly unveil bits and pieces of what we’re working on internally for co-op. Sometimes we’ll show returning elements from the first game; sometimes we’ll show off something new for DD2. This week, we want to show you a brand-new feature for DD2 co-op: the overworld.

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In Dungeon Defenders II, levels will be accessed through an explorable overworld. Think of it like this: Do you remember playing Super Mario 64? In that game, the overworld map -- Peach’s Castle -- was a level unto itself. You could explore the castle on a hunt to find portals to new worlds. There were secrets to be found and challenges to complete.

Now imagine exploring Peach’s Castle with 23 other players. That’s what we’re going for.

In our game, there won’t be a random desert world located in the basement. Our overworld acts as the foundation for the levels and for the story. Everything should feel natural and logical.

You’ll discover challenge missions sprinkled throughout the overworld. For example, you might run into an NPC who starts ranting about enemies falling from the sky, which will take you to a certain... familiar challenge.

In Dungeon Defenders, the structure of the game was three levels and then a level with a boss fight. In Dungeon Defenders II, the first area the team completed currently has four levels and then a level with a boss fight.

Overworld2a-1024x637.jpg

Why are we making an overworld map? We noticed that, in Dungeon Defenders, players spent a ton of time in the tavern. The tavern was a multi-faceted area. It was a war room for strategy discussion and rule creation. It was a social hub for events. It was a community marketplace for item selling and trading. But it was cramped, and the space itself wasn’t that interesting outside of collectible trophies. We wanted to take the social experience of the tavern and set it in an area that encouraged and rewarded exploration.

We’ll have far more information on this as we get closer to the end of the year. For now, we’ll just leave you with the images in this post for you to pour over.

What do you think? We’d love to hear your feedback in the Comments section!

Tune in next Monday for the first information on DD2 enemies.
pmasher

New Hero: Round 2

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With Man & Machine stealing Round One in a last minute victory, there are still two more rounds to vote in until you've chosen our new Hero -- The Barbarian, The Man & Machine, or The Mystic.


Vote Here: https://dungeondefenders.com/2/initiatives/45


Here’s how it works:


  1. Three heroes will compete in a round-robin tournament. The hero with the most Influence Points from all three rounds together will be our next hero!

  2. Every day, you’ll gain one Influence Point for logging into the game and another Influence Point for logging into the site. (2 Total Points per day.)

  3. Use your points here and on our launcher to vote for your favorite hero(es). You can spend as many points as you’d like per round!

  4. Here are the rounds and dates for voting:

  • Round 1:  Man & Machine vs. Mystic (May 14th to May 19th)
  • Round 2:  Barbarian vs. Mystic (May 20th to May 26th)
  • Round 3:  Man & Machine vs. Barbarian (May 27th to June 2nd)

This is Round 2:  Barbarian vs. Mystic.


The Barbarian. The ruthless brawler. The Barbarian is an unstoppable force that is yet to be unleashed on the Old Ones’ army. He prefers to rely on his own two hands and use his two weapons and a multitude of abilities to decimate hordes of enemies. Most heroes hide behind their walls and defenses; the Barbarian hides behind nothing.


The Mystic.The twisted sorceress. Magic has been around in Etheria for quite some time. There is however an older magic -- a darker, more chaotic magic nestled deep within Etheria.


The Mystic was once a thief, but now she carries inside her an ancient and dark serpent demigod. This demigod is the source of ancient and unimaginable magic that the Mystic wields. Most heroes have their defenses likened to their personality; the Mystic’s defenses are dark, twisted and represent the chaotic forms of the serpent god. She is a powerful ally on the battlefield, so long as she can control the fickle whims of her serpent lord.


Who will you choose?

TimmyTrashTier

Here are the notes for Patch 15.2! (It's a small patch for a small week.)

Improvements

  • We have optimized the way in which buffs replicate between the client and server.  Ask Javo (lead programmer) if you want more details, but this will hopefully be the first of several improvements in connection stability and performance.
  • The Awakening Weapons have been re-added to drop tables and all four are now available in the Throne Room.
  • Metrics stuff added and fixed behind the scenes because every move you make / we'll be watching you...


Bug Fixes

  • R3 now opens the pop-up shop in the pet menu again on PS4.
  • Lavamancer Shine Spark (Fissure) Passive now spawns on items with defense power.
  • Some enemies have finally left the nest and will no longer be hiding in spawn behind their mother's wing.
  • We changed two descriptions (one for EV2 and one for Lavamancer) which means its time for a treasure hunt!!!
  • Scorched Tome should now spit even moar hawt fiyah since it will only spawn with hero stats (if it knows what's good for it that is...)


That's it for the moment, but stay tuned for next week's Patch of Flying Daggers (nailed it! I should totally get to name stuff in game now -TimmyTrashTier).

iamisom

Patch 8.4 for Steam

Here are the notes for Patch 8.4 on Steam!


Features

  • Added the new Inventory Pack to Steam! By purchasing the Inventory Pack, you can increase the 12-bag slot limit to a total of 16 bags! Includes:

    • Four Premium Bags

    • Increases bag slots to 16 bags

    • Two Hero Slots

    • Exclusive Title:  “Baggins”

    • 400 Gems (A special bonus thank you!)

    • Our eternal love and devotion

  • Disabled loot beams on Worn, Sturdy, Powerful and Epic loot. Only Mythical and Legendary items now have loot beams. Be gone, bright demons!

  • Added the two Spooky maps to Free Play and End Game playlists.

  • Steam Trading Cards should now be live. For real this time.

  • Removed the spooky event tavern deco and re-added the basic deco.


Bug Fixes

  • Players can no longer insta-kill Betsy using Sticky Nades before she spawns.

  • Fixed two lane blockages on the second Spooky map.

  • Fixed a small issue where when the Spooky Polearm is elemental, its default idle VFX would show up.

  • Rings, Talismans, and Totems were displaying the wrong mesh offset in the shop and enhancement wheel UIs.

  • Squire Norse Head Icon A is now the correct visual representation.

  • Increased base damage for fire and gas traps on Siphon Site D so they actually deal more damage and scale off of difficulty.

  • Fixed a bug that let players get behind enemy spawners on Liferoot Forest.

  • Updated the Relics and Weapon Loot beams beam height to not be lower than the loot circle.


Extra Note

  • We're getting ready to test some upcoming loot changes! Would you like to help us out? Keep an eye on this thread for more details later this week!
iamisom

Dev Log 11: Feb. 18, 2015

Daniel Haddad, Creative Director ([[48971,users]])

With pets now out of the way (well, their design at least… still LOTS to do before we get them in your hands!), I’m moving onto V2 of Spec Nodes! As well as future plannings for DD2 releases. Also started a season 2 character in Diablo III. Me and a few other people at Trendy are doing all Barbarians! It’s great… 


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

Working with Philip on putting together a plan for delivering some awesome new narrative things for you guys. Pressuring Phil to finish playing The Last of Us and to start Left Behind.


Jay Twining, Senior Game Designer ([[67667,users]])

Making some minor adjustments to the Monk’s defenses, with a focus on quality of life.  


Chris James, Lead Level Designer ([[63955,users]])

This week is filled with a huge amount of work reviewing maps that we have in the pipeline and also working with the level designers on new layouts that we are really excited about. 


Javier Barreto, Lead Software Programmer ([[72964,users]])

Laying out the foundations for DD2 Pets… Try not to get too excited. I already feel the pressure.


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

Working on the finishing touches for our new tornado VFX map. It’s pretty dope.


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

Helping production prep the next hotfix and doing a full test sweep over the game. All in preparation for some new exciting content. Oh, also continuing to repro some of the bugs reported by the community.


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

Working on Environment assets for tornado map. Working with other leads and creative peoples to setup a Pet system pipeline. Also, working on camera setups for upcoming in-game cinematics.


Eduardo Lev, Engine Programmer ([[57155,users]])

Writing some data-wrangling tools to move event data between metrics providers, and making sure the format is correct and we don’t have duplicate or missing events.


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

Making improvements to the Forge UI. Moving them pixels around.


Adam Stow, Associate Producer (@TE-Stow)

Instituting a new playtesting schedule and process. Crushing through Bayonetta in style -- Kamiya is still the greatest personality on Twitter.


Enrique Rivera, Concept Artist ([[56240,users]])

Drawing a ton of delicious Pet EGGS!


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

Fixing up some world building related things such as collisions, geometry and vertex colors on some meshes on both spooky levels.


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

Fixing issues on some of our current in-development levels. Also re-doing some areas of our creepy spooky level.


Philip Asher, Marketing Director ([[14,users]])

Not related to work - finally beat Last of Us Remastered this weekend, after I realized I could switch the difficulty from Grounded to Normal. Fantastic ending. In the work world -- working on our future video/Influence Report plans and working with Danny/Production Team/Design to lock down update plans for the rest of the year.


Josh Isom, Community Manager ([[4370,users]])

Finalizing our plans for this week’s Devstream. Still working out the design for a potential Twitch streamer program. Focusing on getting the DD2 Wiki up to date. The wiki needs dedicated, knowledgeable players who can flesh out pages. If you’d like to contribute, please send an email to josh.isom[at]trendyENT[dot]com! 

On a side note: Still haven’t completed The Last Of Us Remastered. Or Dragon Age Inquisition. Or Shadow of Mordor. 


iamisom

Update October 6th, 2016:  Patch 16.1 is now live for PS4!


Here are the notes for Patch 16.1:


Bug Fixes

  • Added a fix for Bonus Missions not rewarding Defender Medals if we've already used that mission in the past. This should fix this week's mission (but not reset it unfortunately). 
  • Fixed the Pet Affection bug from The Journey Begins update. 
  • Dark Torment towers should no longer spawn in the sky.
  • Additional Difficulties for Maps should now only unlock at the end of the Campaign.
  • The Obelisk no longer produces giant grey boxes when attacking with Call to Madness.
  • Demon's Lair should show the correct iPWR now.


The PS4 patch contains these additional changes:

  • Fixed the issue where deleting a hero from the Hero Deck tab in the Inventory would always delete the first hero from the Hero Deck.
  • Added the ability to allocate 50 SAS points with Triangle. (Sorry for the hand cramps!)
  • Pet Rerolls now allow you to choose any stat rather than the first one.
iamisom

Hotfix 7.2 for Steam

Here are the notes for Hotfix 7.2!


Features

  • Auto-Collect Per Wave!

    • Auto-Collect now also runs at the beginning of Combat Phase starting on wave/round 2.

    • It leaves items on the ground once the Auto-Collect bags are full.

    • A chat message appears to let the player know how many items were picked up.

  • Pet Hatching Timer Change

    • Thanks to player feedback, pets will now always hatch after one second!

  • Pet Bag Slot Purchase

    • Players can now buy more slots for the Pet Bag! The Pet Bag size can be increased up to 80 slots.


Content

  • Added 4 Skeleton Costumes, one for each hero! [Limited Edition]

  • Added the Grave Danger Costume Pack to the Steam store

    • Includes the above Skeleton Costumes, plus

    • Exclusive “Bone Collector” Title

    • Headless Horseman Premium Pet

    • 3000 gems (+20% bonus gems)


Balance

  • Item Enhancement was very costly at the high end. In a first step towards improving the system, the cost of enhancing items was reduced by ~66%.

  • Increased the sell value of Legendary items by 75%.

  • Pet Costs and XP:

    • Reduced the gold cost required to level up Pet Power

    • Reduced the gold cost required for Pet Rerolling

  • Increased the health of the Campaign Throne Room Ogre.

  • Multiple projectile weapon critical damage change:  Technically a bug fix, but including here in the balance section for visibility. Each projectile now gains a relative portion of Hero Critical Damage depending on how many projectiles were fired. Before, each projectile gained the full bonus of Hero Critical Damage.


Bug Fixes

  • Fixed a few server crashes.

  • Fixed an issue where the tooltip text for the third stat on an item was too small.

  • Flying enemies in Little-Horn Valley no longer get stuck in the spawner.

  • Lane wisps in Throne Room should now have the correct resistance color.

  • Fixed an issue where other players could easily obstruct the view in the Costume Shop.

  • Fixed an issue where after rebinding the Mana Drop keys, the keys would no longer work.

  • Added a potential fix to the black tower graphics bug.

  • Fixed an issue where pet stats could reroll its Empowerment Stats to the same type.

  • Fixed an issue with the chance rate in the Dragon egg.

  • Fixed an issue where Throne Room Onslaught had incorrect lane spawner billboards.

  • Fixed an issue where all heroes would appear invisible while at the Hero Deck in the Forge.

  • Fixed an issue where players could purchase and have 2 Serenity Range Gambit Skill Spheres even though it's a Large Sphere.

  • Added missing VFX to the Tier 3 Ranged Goblin.

  • Fixed an issue where some Small Skill Spheres were showing up as IV when they were actually III.

  • Fixed an issue where, with a controller active, the keybinds for actions assigned to the keyboard all say "[No Key]" in the options menu.

  • Fixed an issue where there is no VFX in the Petrinarian for the Dragolich pet.

  • Fixed an issue with hero lighting at the Forge.

  • Fixed an issue where the Headless Horseman's attack animation does not play if he kills an enemy and then immediately attacks another.

  • Fixed an issue where the tooltips no longer stated which item is the currently equipped one.

  • Fixed an issue where rapidly clicking on the right-click attack with 1/second ranged weapons while holding down the primary attack will give a huge, unintended Ranged DPS Boost.

  • Fixed an issue where Attack Damage is showing as Max HP in the Inspect Defense for the Training Dummy.

  • Fixed an issue where the default Huntress bow had a grey box in the tooltip for the projectile type icon.

  • Fixed an issue where the Serenity Aura range gambit Large Sphere reduced the health of ALL auras.

  • Fixed an issue where minimizing a bag in Customize mode made the UI display incorrectly.

  • Fixed an issue where after unlocking an NPC via progression, that HUD text showing the unlock requirement was still shown.

  • Fixed an issue where the "Confirm Controller Support" prompt always displayed when a player made a change and clicked Apply in the Options while the controller was active.

  • Fixed an issue where the Blizzard pet ability buff was not playing sounds.

  • Fixed an issue where Defense Range Skill Spheres were not affecting Uber Defenses.

  • Fixed a bug where pet VFX would disappear in the Pet Shop UI after evolution.

  • Fixed a bug where eggs would get their stat points reset, causing the UI to display a rot timer after incubation has finished.

  • Fixed an issue with the Tier Orc icons not appearing correctly on the Mini-map.

  • Fixed an issue with one of the Squire’s medium melee attack swings playing sound too early.

  • Fixed a visual issue with the Headless Horseman.

  • Fixed an issue where players were sometimes unable to purchase anything.

  • Fixed an issue with NPC unlocking after completing all of the quests.

  • Fixed a visual bug in the Pet Shop.

  • Fixed an issue where a pet wouldn’t appear after loading into a map.

iamisom


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Elliot Cannon, Creative Director

Looking forward to the community playtesting the Abyss Lord this week. (See Jason Yu’s post below.) I’ll be jumping in on that after hours late at night. The more tire-kicking on this dude the better. Feedback on his active defense playstyle will help us make him rock. We want to know about the subtleties and things you like and don’t like, especially minute details. Everything else is percolating along and I don’t want to steal anyone else’s thunder in the Dev Log, but I do want to squeeze in an off-topic: go, go, Connor @TheNotoriousMMA.


Jason Yu, Associate Producer (urfyness)

If you want to get involved in the Remote Playtesting Group and help us test the Abyss Lord, send an email to dani.moore[at]trendyent[dot]com! Just let Dani know in the email that you want to be involved, and he'll be in contact with you shortly.

Working really hard to get the Abyss Lord out to our community playtesters so they can give us their first impressions on him. The build is somewhat unstable right now, but we’re working really hard to get one together. Thanks for your patience. 

Also, I can tell this week is going to be crazy already. This morning, our lead programmer, Javier, tells me that he worked all weekend to put in the first-pass implementation of account leveling and committed it into the build. He also worked on optimizations when first loading into the game. That’s some dedication!

It’s almost guaranteed that these changes have broken other systems in the game, so our designers and QA will be working with Javier throughout the week to fix and document these issues. Changing our leveling system from individual heroes to account wide will be an interesting experiment!


Tim Shannon, PS4 & Live Producer (TimmyTrashTier)

In the PS4-verse we’re moving forward on the Harbinger and Carnival work. We’re focusing on UI engineering and memory optimization that will make your heart skip a beat and give you that sensation of butterflies in your stomach (well… it would if you could see it, honest.)  

On the live team side of things we have a brand-new patch that is all kinds of shiny and chrome. We've heard your feedback so far on the new Monthly Mission. We're trying to find rewards that aren't new pets for the Monthly Missions, so please head to this thread to let us know what you think would be rewarding for future Monthly Missions! We’ve turned on client logging so we can get some better information on some of the core technical problems with the game. Onslaught rewards should now have proper iPWR ratings. Finally, Poison Tips should no longer cause server stability issues.


Steven Collins, Lead Level Designer (Esorath)

Moving forward with some prototypes on enemy and tower adjustments. This is part of the way we want to introduce more strategy to the game so cookie-cutter builds are less desirable ways to complete maps.


Joshua Javaheri,Lead Do-Er-oF-All-The-Things (Javahawk)

The last few weeks, the art and features teams have been working hard to redesign a few systems - and in the process, the visual design of our user interfaces to be simpler and cleaner.  


James Reid, Software Programmer (Driscan)

It’s been an intense last couple of weeks hammering out these new UI flows. I can give you a quick tease here, but if you want to see the full direction we’re going, you’re gonna have to tune into the Devstream on Friday. Now that the design/flow is mostly hammered out, the implementation should really take off and by the Devstream after this you should really see it come together.

Here it is in all its glory! It’s so pretty! Remember this is nowhere near close to final art, style, or information. This is the wee beginnings of the implementation stage.

EqyTa5W.jpg

Super early work on the new UI. Check out the Devstream on Friday to see what it'll look like when it's finished!


Chris Flores, QA Lead (likethatwhenigothere)

So this week we’re continuing to work on the hotfixes as they come out. But more importantly we’ve opened the testing floodgates on the Abyss Lord and some very, very early prototypes of the Account Leveling. So we’re gonna evaluate the Account Level stuff, learn how it works and then get ready to test it when it’s available -- all while poking fun at the Abyss Lord so he feels bad about himself and gets in shape before he releases. (Hit the gym, fatty!)

The PS4 is also in our hands now, and we’re working on MS21 (the Dragonfall Carnival + Harbinger update) so that it can ship on ********** (that’s a secret). [Ed. Note:  Secret as in we don’t have a date yet!]

Also, I believe O’ Irish Dani Moore is getting some playtest builds and groups together to get some earlier feedback and sneak peaks at the Abyss Lord. Contact him for details if you’re interested. And if he’s not the person to contact, screw it. Bother him anyway.


Jesus Diaz, World Builder (N3oDoc)

We’re almost done with our first Dungeon type level, so at this point we are adding some final touches and waiting for some feedback.


Daniel Diaz, World Builder (DanielKaMi)

We can't describe the fun we are having working on the dungeon level! It's coming pretty fast and there are more to come!


Dani Moore, Remote QA Manager (Dani)

I can already feel my inbox burning from your emails. Oh my.


Josh Isom, Community Manager (iamisom)

Poor Dani.
iamisom
caption-Blog.jpg

It was a tough decision, but our judges have made their decision. The winner of our Caption Contest is -- Cade Usher (Facebook)! Cade won a Dungeon Defenders II pre-alpha code with this caption:

winner-1024x576.jpg

Congratulations, Cade! Send us a private message on Facebook to receive your code.

While runners-up don’t receive a prize, they do earn the greatest gift of all: our respect. The runners-up of the Caption Contest are:

     Hanakinn, Forums: "I love you, Ground! You understand me!"

     Deanomoore, Twitter: "Ignore him. I've seen more meat on a McNugget."

     Carter English, Facebook: "What? He was like this when we got here!"

     Lord_DaS, Forums: "But alas... after 3 hours undercover in a goblin conga line, the Apprentice could conga no more."

Didn’t win? There’s still time to win a DD2 pre-alpha code on the Enemy Encounters Blog (Enter on Facebook | Enter on Forums) and the Elemental Weapons Blog (Enter on Facebook | Enter on Forums)! Don’t have a forum account? It takes less than a minute to join!
[CG] LAWLTA

DEFENDERS!

October flew by, and November is here, which means we’ve got a slew of new things to show off and talk about! The Dungeon Defenders: Awakened PC beta is coming this month, with news on when it’s being released very soon. We’re currently working with our excellent PR partners on getting Dungeon Defenders: Awakened in front of as many Defenders as possible, so bare with us as we prepare to make this beta an explosive success!

While we’ve been working incredibly hard, today we want to show off the Huntress’s traps, some of the new gorgeous UIs, never before seen maps, and an update as to how as a studio we’ve been working on the game. Without further ado, let’s get into it!

Huntress Traps

We wanted to make sure that the Huntress’s traps conveyed that they were put together by an elf, using materials that are available to a being from the woodlands. There’s a lot of VFX and power that we’re going to be adding to these traps, but for now we’re going to show you what you’ll see as your creating a literal minefield for the hordes that are coming!

Poison Gas Trap

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Proximity Mine Trap

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Inferno Trap

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Darkness Trap

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Etherial Spike Trap

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User Interface Facelift

One thing that we promised with Dungeon Defenders: Awakened was providing a cleaner User Interface, something that is definitely wanting when playing the original Dungeon Defenders. Our approach is to make things read well so that you’re able to discern the information you want, get your gear and character setup the way you want fast and efficiently, so you’re back in the fray and doing what you do best — defending Etheria!

The inventory in Dungeon Defenders has always been a big part of the gameplay, and we’ve made it look aesthetically pleasing, while also providing a ton of functionality. We’ll start off with showing the item box:

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One thing you’ll notice is that there are Nintendo Switch inputs at the bottom. One of the biggest goals we had with the UIs for Dungeon Defenders: Awakened, was to make sure that it played well with a gamepad first. If it plays well with gamepad, then we can easily make it play well with mouse and keyboard.

You’ll also notice that there is a filter tab in the top right. This filter is going to allow players to filter gear with multiple options! Filtering is something that players have wanted for a while, and we’re bringing it in Dungeon Defenders: Awakened. Here’s a tentative list of what you can expect to be able to filter by:
 

  • Quality (Common, uncommon, rare, epic, etc.)

  • Equipment (Weapons, Helmets, Chests, Gloves, Boots, Pets, Brooches, Masks, Bracers, and Shields)

  • Armor Type (Leather, Mail, Chain, etc.)

  • and More!

Another important aspect of the game is being able to inspect a piece of equipment that you’ve received, compare it with a piece that you’ve got equipped, and decide if it’s an upgrade or not. Those were our goals with gear tooltips and comparison:

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When making these tooltips, we made sure that we included the “worst case” scenario for when you receive an item. By that, we focused on what the absolute biggest an item tooltip would be, and this is the result. There’s a ton of information that we need to convey, and so we made sure to push things to their absolute limits in order to provide a clean and easy to read UI. It’s worth mentioning that the white circles and squares are where our icons are going to be going to represent each stat (they’re currently made, just need some slight adjustments).

We also are adjusting the names of stats so that they are able to be understood. These images are work-in-progress still, but these names are something we’ll be looking for feedback throughout our beta process. 

All of it together, here’s what you can expect to see when playing solo:

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There’s still some iteration we’re going to be making (and currently are), but we’re very proud of where the UI currently is and can’t wait for you to be able to use it to its full potential!

There are a couple things that aren’t being shown here, but we want to give context to:

  • Abilities:  This will be where a hero’s abilities and towers are explained.

  • Runes:  This is the level up stat allocation area. Your stat updates are reflected in the character stats pane.

  • Character stats: This is currently getting polished , but will appear where the current item tooltip is in the above screenshot.

A lot of these pieces are coming together for beta. They have functionally been in our test builds as engineer art.

New Map? New Map!

Half of the maps in Dungeon Defenders: Awakened campaign have never been played before, and they help bring an all new epic feel! Two of our new maps are desert based maps, the ruins of a civilization that has long been gone. One of those maps, is tentatively called “Tornado Valley”, opening up to a giant ruined city:

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The next map is a follow up to Tornado Valley, that we’re tentatively calling “Tornado Lowlands”. That’s most definitely a developer name, as there’s nothing low about this map. Be careful not to fall:
 

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Studio Work

As a studio, we are churning through a ton of work. Recently our communication has not been as frequent as we’ve wanted and we’re progressing towards making it better. We’re currently expanding our workforce to help with this, but also are going to be working with our partners, including a PR firm, that will be getting updates and information out across our social channels, and into the hands of various game news outlet to really help Dungeon Defenders: Awakened blow up!

There are multiple goals that we have with Beta. First is to deliver on a promise to our backers, we want to be good on our word and you deserve to see what your support has created. Second, you’ll be providing really value feedback, both in terms of gameplay, but also from the metrics that we’ll be reading on the back end. Last, it’s a great milestone for us to achieve that really helps bring the game together and empower us as a studio to keep working hard.

After the beta, we are going to continue work on the game, up to the release in February. This means polishing systems, balancing gameplay, fixing bugs, and a lot more. The amount and quality of work that we’ve done in such a short time (a little over 8 months) is something that we’re incredibly proud of, and we use that pride to push us in these remaining months. What you’ll see in the beta does not mean it is final, and there’s going to be a ton of time put into making DD:A the best it can be!

Social Defenders

To get reliable updates on what’s to come, be sure to check out our social platforms for the latest juiciest beans to be spilled:

The entire team is having a blast working on DD:A, we cannot wait for all of you to get your hands on it. Stay tuned for more info!

For Etheria!

Chromatic Games

 

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Patch 8.5 for Steam

Greetings, Defenders! We are currently deploying Patch 8.5. We do not expect any downtime, and the deployment is scheduled to end at 9 AM, EST. 

Content

  • The Tavern’s received a makeover, just in time for Thanksgiving! The Tavernkeeper is really proud of the feast he’s laid out. Make sure you wash your hands, and no weapons at the dinner table, please. We’re looking at you, Squire. No, you can’t use a sword to cut turkey...
  • The harvest is upon us! The Apprentice is all geared up for the season in his new Scarecrow costume. We tried to tell him a simple spell would work, but he insists on getting all dressed up. He seems to think he’s really scary. Magic-users, amirite?
Balance
  • Some of you have been getting rich off of corpses. Well, we’ve reduced the drop rates from normal enemies on the Spooky maps, so that may put an end to all this grave robbing tomfoolery. We also reserve the right to use the word ”tomfoolery” whenever we please, so there.

Bugfixes
  • We’ve fixed the bug where Shellium shards are getting sent to the Scavenger and then destroyed. Maybe. We think we fixed it, anyway.  The Scavenger is kind of a scary dude, and he’s got the crazy eyes. Let us know if he keeps stealing your shards, and we’ll take care of it. Or maybe send the Squire after him...

JBrawley
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In Dungeon Defenders II, were exploring new ways to create a fun and engaging cooperative experience. Instead of focusing your attention on one or two main objectives, youll now have the option of protecting sub-objectives that can drastically alter the flow of the game.



Good Co-op Play Comes From Variety





In DDI, many players told us that the best strategies involved clustering defenses around crystal cores.



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This style of defense is known as turtling.




Its a valid strategy, but one that shuts down mobility across the map and encourages players to remain in one location. We believe a strong co-op experience benefits from multiple stimuli that call for dedicated attention from players. In the original game, so long as you protected the crystal core there was little incentive to do much else as a coordinated team. Moving forward, we want to encourage a greater variety of co-op experiences, and we believe that starts by giving players some reason to spread beyond the core.



Sub-Objectives Divert Resources and Draw Attention





To facilitate this, we decided to create a sub-objective system. You can lose these objectives and still win the match, but once a sub-objective falls, its meant to divert the attention of the players within the level. It forces them to make hard choices and divide up critical defense tasks. And as many of our Defense Councillors already know, it takes a coordinated effort to win a game once a sub-objective has fallen.



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The destruction of a sub-objective also provides meaningful feedback for how youre progressing in a match. In DDI, players were either in control or they were dead. Sub-objectives introduce a buffer between these two points. Its a chance for players to rally their team and reconsider their strategy as lanes shift and new enemies head straight for the core.



Losing a Sub-Objective Is Noticeable, But Manageable





However, building a feature and using that feature are two very different things. We felt we had a great gameplay concept, but instead of creating balanced cooperative play, it was just leading to a frustrating experience. During our first prototypes we used too many sub-objectives, and it created a snowball effect. If players were already losing control of the map, the addition of more enemies almost guaranteed a loss. Were currently addressing this problem by having sub-objective enemies spawn during the next combat phase, but this approach isnt without its own issues. It doesnt have the impact we want, and it doesnt make it clear to the player that the loss of a sub-objective is what opened the new lane. Were still trying out a few ideas to address this, including releasing a few enemies right after the sub-objective falls. Were open to ideas from you guys, as well, so please let us know if you have any thoughts!



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We cant wait for you and your friends to experience the sub-objective system. We truly feel it will create a much more exciting experience for everyone involved, and we look forward to seeing your feedback as we approach release. In the meantime, what would you like to see added as a sub-objective in Dungeon Defenders II? Let us know in the comments below!



Without further delay, the winner of our holiday loot naming contest is Bladedtaco! When everyone finds a Vilethorn in the game, theyll look to the heavens and curse your name for beating them in this contest...we mean, theyll forever praise your name!



Leave a comment to get your hands on the Dungeon Defenders II pre-alpha. Well pick a random poster and reveal the winner in our next blog post!
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