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Elandrian

Thursday Check-In With Elandrian

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Greetings Defenders,


Well that was unexpected! Initially I was going to make another “Friday Check In with Elandrian” post tomorrow, but today sounds better!


For those that aren’t in the loop, we accidentally broke Onslaught for our PS4 audience today by introducing some of the code for the new features that are coming out. I’d like to explain why this happened, but also what we’re working on that’s coming out soon so that it will all make sense.


Here’s quick rundown of some of the features and changes coming for Dungeon Defenders II.


Short Term (Targeting Next Week)

Retry and Reroll Map in Onslaught

We’re adding the ability to retry any given map that you’re on as many times as you want! In addition to this, you can choose to reroll the current map that you’re on, up to three times. This will allow you to reroll the modifiers, enemies, and sometimes the map itself depending on where you are in the Floor.  This added functionality was the code that released early on PS4 and broke Onslaught on the current live build.

Memory Optimization

Another fun thing that’s coming with the retry/reroll is some matchmaking memory improvements, too! We’ve increased the amount of maps you can play before being sent back to the Tavern or Heroes Marketplace. You can spend a lot more time playing!


Medium Term

Moving Shards from Items to Slots

We’re making Shards a little easier to manage. Instead of having to unequip/equip Shards repeatedly when you get new items, you’ll only have to place them once. Set it and forget it!  We’re moving the Shard slots themselves to the equipment slots for Gear and Defenses. There’s some UI changes to the left side of the Inventory that are coming with this as well to make this experience easier for PC and console players. We’ll provide more specifics soon, but we just wanted to let you know that it’s coming!


Clearer Itemization and Item Scores

We’re going to be introducing three different score ratings. Item Score, Hero Score, and the tentatively named Deck Score.  It’s a version of ipower, but a newer, fancy-schmancy version to help you understand your item progression.  Our new designers have been hard at work making a system that will make it easier for Defenders to understand where they are in our progression!


A New Hero

We’re still planning to release a very muscly boi… and we’re getting closer and closer to his release. We can start to feel the frigid winds of the Etherian Mountains reaching our Florida-based studio...


Longer Term

Ancient Power Changes

More rewards! More reasons to gain Ancient Power! We want to make Ancient Power worth your time and effort, so we will be tuning what exists currently and then building more on top of it. We have a lot of ideas about how to make this system more rewarding, and we’re hard at work trying out various new solutions for players to check out. Keep accumulating Ancient Power, we’ll make it worth it!


We’re crafting a lot of designs based on feedback that we gather from various sources. We’re always looking for specific feedback about what you enjoy and even what you’re not enjoying, so keep letting us know!  


Protip: “Ancient Power is bad” is not good feedback. “The Ancient Power buffs don’t feel powerful enough to me” is much better.


Social Gating

We’re working on some systems to make it easier to play with your friends in Onslaught. We’re still debating over the specifics, but ultimately the end result will allow players to play together easier. Our designers threw together some creative options that might even add some new ways for players to interact!


More Content and Unannounced Features

We want this year to be filled with meaningful updates to Dungeon Defenders II. Our team is excited to work on new features and fixes that the community has wanted for years. We know the current state of Onslaught and Ancient Power was more foundational and not fully realized yet, but with your help, we can make Dungeon Defenders II into the best Action RPG/Tower Defense game possible.


I’m excited to talk about what’s coming out this year for the game, and I’ll be posting some more intermittent forum posts, as well as social posts on my Twitter handle, @LordElandrian. Give me a follow if you want to stay up to date with our current state of development and smaller dev tidbits here and there.


To see our recent hotfixes, check out our Patch Notes section here!


Thanks again for being Defenders, and I can’t wait to continue defending Etheria with you,


Elandrian

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That is just AWESOME!!!!! Well, not the broken PS4 part, but i'm loving the rest. AP fixes coming, Barbarian soon to be released (if i read that right), shard management retooled (YESSSS!!!!!!!), and i just love the replay/reroll Onslaught floor save idea. 

I really hope in that Itemization discussion, there is talk about bringing back iPWR stat as a shown number. That would eliminate so much extra work i am currently doing and it would really help everyone understand how it all works better.  

Keep up the great work TE. So excited to see what you have in store next. 

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Cant wait!
I hope you guys can also find time to implement a system whereby after completing floor 65 your highest floor is then unlocked again giving leaderboard pushers like myself incentive to reset and allow for more competition at the top

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@Jaws_420 quote:

Barbarian soon to be released (if i read that right)

I really hope in that Itemization discussion, there is talk about bringing back iPWR stat as a shown number.

WHAT?! We didn't say Barbarian? Did we? What barb? What barian? I don't know about no barbrarian!

Also, we're aiming to make the itemization as transparent and easy to understand as possible. No more spreadsheets with sell values!

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@Lawlta quote:

No more spreadsheets with sell values!

I have happy tears...i just hugged the fist person i saw. I may have an HR issue now...

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Since I wasn't able to go into more detail in my big post, I hope this is a good place to drop some quick feedback specific to the Ancient Power reset system.


Overall, I feel like the current drawbacks of the Ancient Power outweigh the benefits for me. My biggest gripes at this point are having to regear repeatedly and I feel like I lose too much ascension. 


The shard change listed above is already a pretty huge step in the right direction. if I want to play all my heroes, I have to do a lot more gear comparisons than if I just limit myself to just heroes essential for re-progression. Ideally, a set-and-forget system for gear (weapons, armor, and relics) would be very convenient after the initial progression, but anything that lets me play the game more than the inventory would make resets less painful.


I feel like Ascension should either not be a cost to do an Ancient Power reset or the cost should be severely reduced. Having a high ascension really improves the quality of life of the game and you lose a lot of it from the current Ancient Power reset system, especially with the talent cap increase. It feels rewarding to have a high ascension because a single hero can effectively use many defenses and can even be used in combat. When you reset, you have to create multiple heroes to focus your talents for specific defenses/roles. In practice, this sometimes leads to accidentally using the wrong hero, and you may never get to feel the impact of increased talent caps. Every reset makes your ascension low enough that you almost never feel stronger than just the basic milestones (60 for crit chance, 210 for range).


Every reset should make you feel some sort of progression. Regearing again feels more like I just reset my game just to experience basic progression. Losing a lot of ascension takes away the great convenience of keeping talents on one hero and it doesn't let me feel the effects of talent cap increases until much later.

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@lightrayne quote:

Since I wasn't able to go into more detail in my big post, I hope this is a good place to drop some quick feedback specific to the Ancient Power reset system.


Overall, I feel like the current drawbacks of the Ancient Power outweigh the benefits for me. My biggest gripes at this point are having to regear repeatedly and I feel like I lose too much ascension. 


The shard change listed above is already a pretty huge step in the right direction. if I want to play all my heroes, I have to do a lot more gear comparisons than if I just limit myself to just heroes essential for re-progression. Ideally, a set-and-forget system for gear (weapons, armor, and relics) would be very convenient after the initial progression, but anything that lets me play the game more than the inventory would make resets less painful.


I feel like Ascension should either not be a cost to do an Ancient Power reset or the cost should be severely reduced. Having a high ascension really improves the quality of life of the game and you lose a lot of it from the current Ancient Power reset system, especially with the talent cap increase. It feels rewarding to have a high ascension because a single hero can effectively use many defenses and can even be used in combat. When you reset, you have to create multiple heroes to focus your talents for specific defenses/roles. In practice, this sometimes leads to accidentally using the wrong hero, and you may never get to feel the impact of increased talent caps. Every reset makes your ascension low enough that you almost never feel stronger than just the basic milestones (60 for crit chance, 210 for range).


Every reset should make you feel some sort of progression. Regearing again feels more like I just reset my game just to experience basic progression. Losing a lot of ascension takes away the great convenience of keeping talents on one hero and it doesn't let me feel the effects of talent cap increases until much later.

Some good points! Also the fact that you are stuck in the reseting for 800+ hours back to back is a huge drawback. 

Maybe Trendy shouldn't have permanently reset our ascension only lower it while we are reseting, then we get it back once we reach floor 65? Or maybe even better not mess with ascension at all and use that mastery system and put a progressive talent cap in place while we reseting?

That way we would have felt slight power increase, and actually been more powerful, after each reset. And we  would also be able to choose more freely when we wanted to do a reset and not feel forced to do it back to back. 

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@Dani quote:

Buttbarian confumed.

It looks like English, almost sounds like it, but in reality confirms nothing. Well played... Jester_Forum_icon2.pngbarbarian.png

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@Elandrian quote:

More reasons to gain Ancient Power!

I hope some of those reasons include:

  • An increase to movement speed  - It would be great if we could get a 10% - 25% max boost per player, stackable up to 40% - 100% with 4 players. Nothing says end-game better than a boost to one's speed.
  • An increase to max defense crit chance - This could be 2.5% per player and up to 10% with 4 players. Unless players are wearing Radiant Critical Power or Defensive Critical Strike, this increase over the cap wouldn't be noticeable unless more than 1 player had the skill. 
  • An increase to max defense speed - We could potentially get machine gun cannons with this idea or at least a moderate increase to defense speed.
  • An increase to the current Ancient Strike's range - I'm not sure if Ancient Strike's range caps at 2.5% per player but it if does, that should be increased. I did the math and a 2.5% - 10% increase is barely noticeable. I feel the max per player should be 10% and 40% with 4 players. With this increase, players could swap Deadly Strikes for defense-specific shards and potentially have the same range with 4 players.
  • An increase to ascension stat points - With each Ancient Power reset, we gain ascension points more often. For example: Ancient Power 1 rewards 1 extra ascension point every 10 levels, Ancient Power 10 rewards 1 extra ascension point every level and Ancient Power 50 rewards 5 extra ascension points every level.
    • With this idea, you wouldn't need to be as high an ascension level to gain the same number of points. Ancient Power 10 at ascension level 500 could have the same number of points as a Non-Ancient Power ascension level 1000. In time, you could start to enjoy your increased talent caps as you grind through Ancient Power.
  • Ancient Power for pets - Instead of just resetting pets to level 1, they could gain Ancient Powers making them more powerful than before. New pets would start at the same Ancient Power as you. Why should pets remain weak forever? Pets could gain the potential to become as powerful as Mega Chickens.


Edit:

@Elandrian quote:

We’re adding the ability to retry any given map that you’re on as many times as you want! In addition to this, you can choose to reroll the current map that you’re on, up to three times.

I hope this includes the ability to retry map 2/3 or 3/3 after a disconnect. More than half my losses are from Playverse expiring.

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@Sn/+/per quote:
  • Ancient Power for pets - Instead of just resetting pets to level 1, they could gain Ancient Powers making them more powerful than before. New pets would start at the same Ancient Power as you. Why should pets remain weak forever? Pets could gain the potential to become as powerful as Mega Chickens.

awesome idea!!!!! The resetting of the pets really hurts. So many waves played just to level them up. Having a boost for them tied to the AP is a brilliant way to combat that. 

I was just thinking of how cool it would be to expand the whole pet system greatly. Gear/weapons for them. Builder specific abilities. Skins for their appearance - which i guess we sort of have with the egg upgrades, but i mean more like alternate color/costumes (i.e. like a Flacor appearance for the Jade Dragon. +1 for Neverending story reference). 

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@Elandrian quote:

A New Hero

We’re still planning to release a very muscly boi… and we’re getting closer and closer to his release. We can start to feel the frigid winds of the Etherian Mountains reaching our Florida-based studio...




1XQv7QDETJKoi7ODmkoBMA.png


Hes coming boys...

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WOOT WOOT!!! Hopefully they make him fun & LEGENDARY!!! They did a great job with him in DD1. Hopefully they keep him fun with new ways for DD2! :-) I'm excited!! I didn't play him a whole lot in DD1, but when I did, I had alot of fun with him!!

Excited to be able to retry maps infinite times! I just hope there is no cost to doing so. Same with the 3x rerolling of mutators, etc. I'd like that to be cost free.

Lightrayne - I am curious which things Trendy will be addressing that will directly relate to the concerns you laid out. :-)

@Sn/+/per - Love those ideas, especially the pets being able to utilize Ancient Power! I think some additional ideas could be:

Changing some of the heroes abilities to something new -

 Squire: Instead of a shield block, he now gains the ability to wield 2 swords!

Huntress - No longer shoots a Phoenix. Instead, a huge Phoenix zooms down from above doing Massive dmg in a large AoE

Monk - No longer Force Pushes. Instead, grants self and nearby players increased speed by 75 for 15 seconds

Apprentice - Every shot is a charged shot now!


EV2 - Charge shot now Grants EV2 the ability to generate a portal. Cannot normal shoot until both entrance and exit portals are placed.

Changing how towers function (Same idea as spheres back in NM4 days) -

 
Bring back Lightning Aura :-)

Change the element of Flame aura to something else... maybe ice? Enemies now slip & fall which does extra dmg? Or maybe Ice Aura does no Dmg, but all enemies affect are now frozen & are prone to crushing dmg?


Explosive Trap now is the elemental Chaos Trap


Training dummy now becomes the Slice N Dice wall :-)


This one, though, has me wondering.... "Our designers threw together some creative options that might even add some new ways for players to interact!" I wonder.....

@21:20



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God bless you Elandrian! It was a very quiet January; distressingly so. I was just thinking, as the month draws to a close, how I hoped we heard from you before February. As otherwise that would be an ominous sign. You delivered, and everything you mentioned is highly requested and worth getting excited for. So glad to hear what is being worked on - along with a decent priority order as well. Look forward to more posts like these. Even junior versions of posts like these. A little goes a long way. Much love as always!

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Whoooo! Replay! OH YEAH! FINALLY! And it's next week :D !

And, man! Some form of new IPWR is coming back! Whoo!

Plus there confirmation that Barbarian's coming very soon! Can't wait to collect those axes!

Thanks for all those! And that was an amazing roadmap of what's coming!

Here are some suggestions for Ancient Power (can't wait for some update on that too) :

Ability cosmetics and power surges.

Every time Ancient Power hits a milestone, the Hero Abilities start to look different and becomes more powerful. When Ancient Power reaches it's max, hero abilities will looks in it's epic-est best!

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@Paloverde zfogshooterz quote:

Whoooo! Replay! OH YEAH! FINALLY! And it's next week :D !

And, man! Some form of new IPWR is coming back! Whoo!

Plus there confirmation that Barbarian's coming very soon! Can't wait to collect those axes!

Thanks for all those! And that was an amazing roadmap of what's coming!

Here are some suggestions for Ancient Power (can't wait for some update on that too) :

Ability cosmetics and power surges.

Every time Ancient Power hits a milestone, the Hero Abilities start to look different and becomes more powerful. When Ancient Power reaches it's max, hero abilities will looks in it's epic-est best!

I like that, kind of like going super saiyan 2...3...

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So how long before onslaught is playable on PS4 again, seems like a major problem that a failed patch couldn't be fixed or rolled back.  its been almost a day.

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1) Retry and re-roll are nice. However it doesn't address player time limitations. Would you consider reducing waves down to 3 and scale accordingly?

2) Moving shards - sounds great if we still get the same number of slots as Mythical / Legendary provides (I can't imagine it wouldn't). Will help with resets when they're improved.

3) Finally, iPWR. Please, please don't make it convoluted just for the sake of it. iPWR was intuitive.

4) Babs! As someone who's never played DD1 but heard you constantly pine for it, I'm looking forward to a new hero at this point.

5) Ancient Power Changes - this only puts me off resetting until the changes come along; because the cost outweighs the benefits significantly at the moment. I hope the plans you're piecing together make it worthwhile.

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I hope the assassin removing dryad corrupt bug is a priority on the to do list. Just try to do trial 5 with c5 gear and try not to right click 20 times a wave.

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When the shards get moved from items to slots, what happens to the shards we have in items? Will they go back to inventory? What if your bags are full? Do we need to unload all the shards pre-patch? I would hate to lose any.

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The changes look good. For me ancient power is too costly, thousands of hours being nerfed for little gain. Gameplay changing from high level elite heros to 3-4 heroes of same class to do the same work is mostly ok except for the need for mdore hero slots @2000 DM each with no discount buying 5.

It would be useful if AP gave me say 20 extra DU per AP level. No extra Mana, just DU. This would allow that boost in a a build that was a few DU shorte with no extra mana this adds to the strategy. 

AP also requires doing a lot of upgrades which means a lot of DM and gold. Raising the max DM would help a bit, but much bigger help would be for Onslaught to give DM even on a graduated scale. (Less for lower floors a to some max at higher ones)

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@Learning quote:
The changes look good. For me ancient power is too costly, thousands of hours being nerfed for little gain. Gameplay changing from high level elite heros to 3-4 heroes of same class to do the same work is mostly ok except for the need for mdore hero slots @2000 DM each with no discount buying 5.

It would be useful if AP gave me say 20 extra DU per AP level. No extra Mana, just DU. This would allow that boost in a a build that was a few DU shorte with no extra mana this adds to the strategy. 

AP also requires doing a lot of upgrades which means a lot of DM and gold. Raising the max DM would help a bit, but much bigger help would be for Onslaught to give DM even on a graduated scale. (Less for lower floors a to some max at higher ones)

I would rather see DM awarded in onslaught as they are in chaos complete a map get 25 DM. No matter the difficulty level.

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@Paloverde zfogshooterz quote:

Ability cosmetics and power surges.

Every time Ancient Power hits a milestone, the Hero Abilities start to look different and becomes more powerful. When Ancient Power reaches it's max, hero abilities will looks in it's epic-est best!

I've forgot to give credits where it's due on this idea and my bad for it.

Credits goes to Uchihia. That idea was in this thread : Link

It was an amazing idea!

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