New content. New balance. New focus.
From top to bottom, Foundation: Part 1 brings a variety of changes to the core game experience. Your feedback guided us to change game progression, game balance, content, information delivery and so much more.
But this is the first step on a greater journey. Many elements in this update lay the groundwork for future expansion and improvements, so expect some rough edges on our shiny new installations.
What’s in the update? Here’s a top-level overview of what to expect when the update arrives, which is tentatively scheduled for next week:
The Campaign March Begins
Level progression and XP grind frustrations were the biggest points of feedback we received, so addressing these points received the majority of our focus. After stewing on your feedback, we’ve decided to turn away from our level bracket progression system and move toward a Campaign Mode! In the Campaign Mode, you will move from one map to another, facing stronger and more varied enemies until you reach the ultimate showdown in the castle. Once you’ve completed this content, you’ll enter the Free Play and Incursion endgame content that’s designed to keep you challenged and engaged. Getting to this point is much faster thanks to a dramatically decreased XP curve to Level 25.
There’s still work to be done, though. Transitioning from one map to another in the Campaign requires you to click the “Continue” button on the Summary Screen; if you don’t press the button, you will be forced to leave and re-enter Campaign Mode to continue on your journey. We know we have a lot more work to do to fix matchmaking in the future, including improving party support. We’ll focus on these issues and more in our future updates. One step at a time, Defender. One step at a time.
Rebalance ALL The Things
In addition to matchmaking and grind concerns, we received a ton of feedback about critical game imbalances throughout the core experience. Foundation: Part 1 brings major balance changes to defenses, enemies, green mana, heroes and maps. The result is hopefully a smoother progression through early- and mid-game and a more challenging experience in the endgame. We look forward to your feedback on the forums about these changes, and we’ll use your posts to continue refining the game. We’ll also have the full patch notes on these changes for you to ruminate on when the update is live.
Incursions and Legendary Loot
Speaking of endgame content, Foundation: Part 1 lays the groundwork for DD2’s endgame starting with our Incursion prototypes. There are two prototypes included in this update: Chrome Enemies on Ruins and the Dark Mage Commander on Ramparts. Thanks to your Influence voting, we’ll be focusing more on Commander Incursions in the future.
In the Chrome Enemies Incursion, all enemies are covered from head to toe in chrome. This shiny affliction makes them immune to knockup and stuns. Enemies will walk over Geyser Traps, shrug off Earthshatter explosions and laugh in the face of Lightning/Geyser combos. The Dark Mage Commander Incursion stars a floating Dark Mage who looks down upon the battlefield and globally heals areas of enemies. The number of areas it can heal increases until the final wave, when it leaps down and joins the fray. This commander can spawn an incredible amount of skeletons when it’s on the field, and it’s no slouch when it comes to offensive power.
While you’re playing the Incursions, be on the lookout for new Legendary weapons that you can only find in these modes. There’s one new Legendary weapon for each hero. These weapons have unique special stats that will separate them from what you can find anywhere else. For example, you can find a Monk weapon that will detonate enemies when you land the killing blow while inside the Serenity Aura. If the explosion kills a nearby enemy that's also in the aura, that poor *** will also blow up.
Bring A Friend...Or Twenty
Looking for players to join you on your Incursion quest? Stop by the new Social Tavern, where up to 20 players can hang out and find new partners-in-crime. If you want to get away from the buzz of the Social Tavern, just create a private game. You'll be able to progress through the whole Campaign Mode and the endgame content without seeing another soul. [[2161,hashtags]]
While you’re in the Tavern, pay a visit to Archibald to receive your Daily Mission! Thanks to your Influence voting, you will be able to select between two different missions. Select your mission and then complete it for an XP and gold reward. Have an idea for a Daily Mission? Head to the Suggest a Daily Mission thread! We’d love to hear your ideas.
Challenges and Steam Achievements
Conquered the Incursions? Try completing all of our new Challenges! There are 80 Challenges for you to unlock. These Challenges bring their own XP/gold rewards, and a number of them will also unlock additional titles for you to adorn. We’ll be adding more Challenges in the future. Have an idea for a Challenge? Stop by our Suggest a Challenge thread and share your ideas!
We’ve also added 15 Steam achievements to the game, and more are on the way!
Level Up Feedback
There’s much more coming in this update, but the final highlight we’d like to share is our improvement to level up feedback. When you level up, you’ll see how your stats grow with each passing level. You’ll also see which defenses, abilities and actions (like an additional tower upgrade) you’ve unlocked. And you’ll also see how many Spec Points you’ve unlocked, along with a notification on your HUD encouraging you to spend your SP.
Foundation: Part 1 is the first step on a greater journey, and it’s all thanks to your feedback. Keep up the good work, Defenders, and together, we’ll make the best Action Tower Defense game yet.