Happy Holidays from everyone here at Trendy Entertainment! Thanks for a great 2016 and we can’t wait to share what’s coming up in 2017. Here’s some tidbits about some of the things we’re working on in the game.
Daniel Haddad, Design Director (Blacksmith)
There are no holidays in the camp of Blacksmith. We’re working on three huge changes coming to Dungeon Defenders II very soon. Today I am going to talk about 1.5 of those changes.
While we were working on the Terraria crossover, our back burners were burning away thinking about what we can do to DD2 to make it a more entertaining experience and help empower the end game. While I was playtesting the bloodmoon incursion, one of the answers was staring right at me the entire time. Do you guys see what is wrong with this picture?
Even though we give you the option to carry four heroes in your hero deck, in order to achieve the full fantasy of a hero, you need three of that hero. In the image above, I had:
Defense Health Dryad dedicated to building tanky trees
Defense Power Dryad dedicated to building damage dealing defenses
Hero Damage/Ability Power Dryad dedicated to wrecking face during the combat phase
We are all used to this by now and it’s funny that this has been staring all of us in the face for years now, and we never realized how obtuse it feels. In order for a player to achieve the fantasy a hero promises, that player needs to level 3 of the same hero and farm for at least 18 pieces of gear.
While thinking about this seemingly obtuse problem in DD2, I started thinking about how players interface with loot and realized that loot itself is also currently obtuse. Imagine you are a hero. Imagine you are wearing a full legendary ipwr 800 set of armor. You’d feel powerful right? Protected? Safe? That is what armor is for right? Not in current DD2, if that armor had defense stats on it, well, you will get 1-shot in nightmare… What about if you have an iPwr 800 legendary weapon! Surely you can deal great damage to your adversaries right? Well, not entirely … you more like tickle them to death if that weapon had the wrong stats… Similar to how you interface with your hero deck, there is a lot that does not make sense about DD2’s loot.
To fix these problems I proposed one simple rule. “Whoever equips an item, is affected by that item”. What does that mean? Well, if a hero is equipping a piece of gear, only that hero is affected by that gear. This allows us to make armor and weapons make sense once more. You will no longer find a weapon with Defense Stats nor will you find Armor with Defense Stats.
“What the ploop Blacksmith! What are you doing!? You know this is a Tower Defense game right! Why are you taking tower stats away this is garbage!”
Aha! But wait! There is more! Heroes can no longer equip relics and the game is going to have a total of 5 relic types:
Primary Stat: Defense Power
Primary Stat: Defense Health
Primary Stat: Defense Range
X (not sure what this will look like yet)
Primary Stat: Defense Crit Damage
Y (not sure what this will look like yet)
Primary Stat: Defense Attack Rate
Each one of your towers will now have an equipment slot in your equipment belt that can equip a single relic. So for example, on the Squire you will see:
Cannonball Relic Slot
Blockade Relic Slot
Ballista Relic Slot
Dummy Relic Slot
Each tower is now only affected by the relic they equip. What does all this mean? Well this change allows us to combine those 3 heroes you did before into a single hero. Your hero deck of 4 heroes can now literally be 4 different heroes (or 4 squires if you really want to, you can do what you want, you’re all grown…). Each hero can now fulfill the fantasy role in its entirety.
But Blacksmith, what about hero diversity? At least before you had 3 different Squires… It now sounds like all Squires are going to be the same!
Nope! They won’t be, and here is why. If you think about it really, the 3 different Squires you had before were not at all very exciting differences. The next two changes (that I cannot yet talk about) are targeted at adding customization and diversity to each hero type so that you can have different sorts of Squires, Apprentices, EVes (EVii?) and so on.
One of the two things (that I cannot yet talk about, but I am going to anyway) revolves around how you interface with Passives. Right now passives are a good customization tool but are also a massive pain to interface with. You are dependent on RNG to get you the 3 passives you want in the right combination. We are changing that. We are thinking that passives will no longer spawn on gear. Instead, gear spawns with passive slots and passives drop independently on different maps. We are also thinking that passives will no longer have random values but instead will start at a fixed value and can be upgraded through item enhancement. Instead of finding a passive that says “Cannonball Tower does +15% more damage” you will now find an object, let’s call this object a shard, that says “This shard improves the damage of the tower it is socketed into by 5%, can be upgraded 10 times”. By divorcing loot and passives (it was a doomed relationship from the start), you can now invest in the passives you want to and when you get a higher iPwr piece of gear, simply unsocket that passive and move it to the new piece of gear.
All these changes are highly experimental, a lot may change about them, and are the reason why I will be working through the break to deliver these changes to all of you as quickly as possible. We will talk about all these changes in the future, but I wanted to reveal some of them to you know so we can start gathering your feedback. If you have something to say please comment and include “Blacksmith” in your reply. If you have concerns or even if you like what you hear and want to send a few encouraging words please reply in the comments below!
(Also examine the inventory screenshot below closely, you may see the new equipment slots for each hero)
Joshua Javaheri, Tech Art Director (Javahawk)
First and foremost, Happy Holidays! It’s been a long year and a long journey thus far for us and for you, and we're really glad to be here with you throughout. The last few patches have been relatively quiet as we continue to work on huge system overhauls that will dramatically change the way we play and interface with DD2.
A few of us are wrapping up our year here with some much anticipated quality of life improvements to the inventory UI. Gone will be the days of the hero's forge soon, as we're shoving a ton of important hero and inventory specific information onto this revamped inventory system. The right side of this new UI will be the inventory management screen while the left side is relegated to dealing with your hero deck, equipment, and various stats.
One of the questions we've been getting lately is "will these inventory changes affect the structure of bags, and if so, how will this affect my previous purchases?" Simply, yes, we are getting rid of the concept of standard and premium bags in favor of a simpler system. All bags will have the previous premium functionality and will consist of 64 inventory slots apiece.
All players who return will get converted to the new system with the same-or-higher number of inventory slots as they previously had (rounded up to the nearest 64 slot bag). So that means a player who currently has a total of 144 slots (9 bags of 16 slots) will get rounded up to 192 slots (3 bags of 64 slots). THIS MEANS THAT IN EVERY CASE, PLAYERS WILL RECEIVE THE SAME OR GREATER NUMBER OF TOTAL INVENTORY SLOTS.
Additionally, all bags will have extensive sorting functionality. More specifically, players will now be able to sort by Weapons, Armor, Relics, Pets/Pet Items, Consumables, and Lockboxes, and our smart after sorting algorithms will also intelligently sort between different types of items. For example, if a player currently has a huntress equipped, when they sort by weapons, the top hits will all be bows, followed by other weapons with similar ranged stats. We also have a second layer of sorting, with tags such as iPWR, rarity, recent, etc, for even more sorting control.
We are also giving players the tools they need for smarter auto-loot collection. Players will be able to specify, on a per bag level, which loot goes where! It will now be possible for a player to throw all legendary huntress bows into one bag, and all garbage low tiered items into a garbage bag automatically. This should help some of the tedious item management pain points we've noticed players experiencing.
Here are some other cool inventory notes players can expect when we release inventory 2.0:
Inventory Item locking
Sell all in bag feature (Locked items ignored)
Unified design across all platforms
Full gamepad support
As a parting shot, we are also working on a solution to upgrade gear from the inventory, similar to DD1! :)
Colin Fisher, Assistant Producer (Elandrian)
I can’t wait for this next year, and I can’t wait to share all the hype that I have been containing since I started working on DD2. We’re going to be on our holiday break for a while, but we’ll be back in January and grinding hard at some big boy system updates.
I might stream a day or two over our break, and if you’re interested in streaming over the holidays, let me know! I’ll still be around the interwebs interacting with the community when I’m not sipping martinis (shaken not stirred) on a beach and hopefully hosting some fun people on our Twitch channel!
Jesus Diaz, World Builder (N3oDoc)
Happy Holidays Defenders!
For those who didn't read the last Devlog, we are working on a barbarian themed level, and this week we've been focusing on some viking huts meshes and textures.
We already made some good progress and can't wait to start the world building phase of this level! Meanwhile, here are some of the new assets.
Daniel Diaz, World Builder (DanielKami).
Hey Happy Holidays everyone! As Jesus said, we're working on a barbarian themed level, mostly doing art test stuff. We had some master classes and received some great advice from Jordan this week to help us improve our hand painting skills.
Here's an example: