Revenge of the Fallen: Realm Rework (Progression Overhaul)

Look everyone! It’s another Miniguy post! It’s been a while since I’ve gotten to write one of these. Today, we’re going to take a look at a core gameplay system: Realm-ranking. This is all about improving the core progression loop. Check it out:

i am learning to youtube clickbait. i have acquired the red circle. now i am unstoppable.

We’ve mentioned before that we’re explicitly ranking content in terms of difficulty. Part of the reason we’ve started doing this is to support the new progression system.

If you can’t watch the video right now, I’ll also explain the new system a bit in text, by quoting from the video:

In legacy, the core progression loop encouraged new characters to 1) skip early-game content, 2) do a 50/50 teleport into high-level content, and 3) try to survive a difficult area where your character didn’t belong. If you died at this point, no problem: you could just make another new character. But when you inevitably lived, you’d effectively start the game at level 20.

The result: there was no early-to-mid-game. There was just endgame.

ouch. players got us figured out

In new RotF, we explicitly designate content as one of the three difficulty ranks: Easy, Medium, or Hard. You may have noticed these designations on our content blog posts: for example, Gate to the Underworld, which is Hard-rank, or Riverside Refuge, which is Medium-rank. Each Realm portal gets assigned a difficulty.

assigned difficulties? hmm…

When you make a new character, you begin in the Easy Realm, gaining access to the next-level realm by clearing a realm of your current level, or by clearing a single dungeon of your current level. This progression system promises that there will always be people running content of all difficulties, so it’s a double win: you won’t be lonely while leveling up a new character, and the early-to-mid-game content that we design will actually see usage. Stat maxing fruit will also be a relatively common drop in early-to-mid areas, so it should feel rewarding to play through on a new character.

let me in!!

We want to make sure that encouraging players to play early-to-mid-game doesn’t conflict with our promise to make a high-speed, fast-paced bullet hell, but we also want to make sure that we make good on this promise deliberately, and not by keeping the broken progression system from legacy.

Thank you so much for reading. Watch the video if you get a chance—Google’s magic algorithms will hate us less. We’ll update this post with Skilly’s CT key puzzle in 15 minutes, so check back soon for a chance to get a key!

Edit: Skilly’s key puzzle is here! As always, there are three keys to discover. Use at https://rotf.io/register.

Revenge of the Fallen: Gate to the Underworld — Sia and Hu, Eternal Companions

Hello again! It’s me, patpot, here with another content post about the Gate to the Underworld. Since showing off Ra, the Sun God, we’ve been making steady progress, and we’re excited to show you the next area of the dungeon: the Fire Lakes.

The Fire Lakes is the first stop on your journey through the Duat. Surrounded by molten lava and unfortunate souls, this scalding area is home to Sia and Hu, two more of the dungeon’s bosses. I’ll let you take a look for yourself.

hot hot hot hot!

Well then, that was pretty hot.

The demo video shows a lot, so we don’t have too much to add. As with many of our gameplay preview posts, we’ll highlight a few areas that we think are particularly exciting.

it’s kinda hot in here…

On your way to the portal:

you’ll make your way through the hardened lava, and reach the portal…

By the portal:

ok no bias this is cool. come on

There’s really not much more to say—we think the gameplay speaks for itself. Quaximi and BQ worked exceptionally hard on the visuals for this dungeon, so send them your love! We’re thrilled with how much it pops.

the big reveal

That’s all from me. Keys!

We’re trying something different this time: Skilly made a very advanced anti-bot key giveaway system. This image is your gateway to a key.

Use at https://rotf.io/register. Good luck!

Revenge of the Fallen: Gate to the Underworld — Ra, the Sun God

Hey all! patpot here with another content blog post! This time, we’ll be showcasing a boss fight from a Hard-rank dungeon we’ve been working on: the Gate to the Underworld.

In this dungeon, you’ll travel through our interpretation of the Egyptian afterlife. Battle mini-bosses and Gods, and help Osiris realize his plan to save the Duat from falling into chaos. After months of work on the whole dungeon, we’re excited to show off this small section of the Gate to the Underworld.

Before exploring the afterlife, you’ll have to defeat Ra. To show the power of the Sun God, I’ve chosen a few highlights from the team’s first playthrough. Take a look!

The fight starts off with a manic bullet hell. Destroy Ra’s staves or you’ll find the rest of the phases rather difficult to handle (they might not have been too difficult to destroy without health scaling, oops).

Ra channels the power of the sun. Here’s a clip of Miniguy maneuvering around him (or possibly trying to aggro everything to kill me. Hard to say which).

Despite Ra’s innate firepower, he can be overwhelmed. When challenged, he calls upon the sky.

Ra’s Sun Disk attack (shown below) isn’t particularly threatening, but it does demonstrate how we reward precise movement in RotF. We’ve reworked the hitbox system to behave more like some beloved bullet hells, so dodging feels super smooth. We’ll definitely talk more about this soon, but for now, check out this clip!

Ra’s Sun Lasers were not originally part of this fight, but their omission caused Quaximi to screech. You don’t want Quax to screech (trust me, you don’t), so here they are!

Once Ra’s dead, there’s nothing stopping you from taking a ride to through the rest of the dungeon… Except for the fact that the post ends here.

When the time is right, the Duat boat will take you beyond the Sun Docks.

Thanks for reading as always! I hope you enjoyed this content teaser.

As always, keys will be added in 15 minutes. Good luck!

[1][1][1]W-Y[2]OU-[3]N7W-[4]XWQ
1. (3 characters) In order to relax one could get in a jacuzzi or a hot _ _ _. (can you tell we get excited when keys generate a full word)

2. The number which hint this is.

3. Final letter of the English alphabet.

4. The first letter of the name of the boss shown in this blog post.

[1]GMD-JUZ[2]-[3][3][3][3]-HVS[4]

1. Flip an M upside down.

2. The first character of the type of creature that guarded the Icy Peaks in legacy RotF that players would fight in the realm.

3. (4 characters) Aztec without the t.

4. The first letter of the name of the staff member who is present in all of the gifs except the last one. (because he died 😦 )

[1][1]DV-KK[2]V-[3]JDX-[4]H9L
1. (2 characters) Abbreviation for High Definition.

2. The number of non-RotF related hints from these 3 keys (not counting this one).

3. The first letter of the name of the dungeon shown in this blog post.

4. 3×3

Revenge of the Fallen: March Roadmap

Hey all! We’ve been working on a lot of stuff behind the scenes. There’s still plenty to do, but we hope to be able to share more details about what we’re working on in the coming weeks.

Until then, we figured it might be nice to give you guys an idea of precisely where our time is being spent. So let’s look at our tentative March Development Roadmap.

hey, where are the dates?

As we’ve said many times, RotF still has a lot missing. We have design docs for a total of six Easy Rank, six Medium Rank, and six Hard Rank dungeons. Out of those docs, only two (2!) of the six Hard Rank dungeons were available during Closed Testing (along with the Easy Rank dungeons, which have been done for a while). Our immediate focus is on finishing the rest of the planned biomes and dungeons, because many of our other pending tasks (such as exciting loot drops and effects) depend on those boss fights and pieces of content. You might also notice that the roadmap is… rather vague about specific deadlines or dates for each deliverable task. There are a number of reasons for this.

Firstly, many of these tasks are worked on asynchronously. While Mike and I work on the graph logic for the new Skill Trees, Quaximi may be working on the 3D assets for a new area, and Patrick may be working on the scripting for a boss fight. We all have individual, target completion dates, but we sometimes need to pull resources from each other to finish off a specific task.

Secondly, it is notoriously hard for game studios to anticipate how long some tasks will take. This is especially problematic when trying to solve engineering issues (as opposed to gameplay or design issues) that may not have been solved before. Luckily, this month’s plotted tasks don’t involve much new tech, but we try not to put pressure on ourselves to deliver something before it’s ready, and publicizing specific task deadlines directly opposes that goal.

trello boards leaked!!!

It’s also worth noting that some of these tasks have already been started, and thus may take more (or less) time than you might think. “Hard Rank Dungeon I” has essentially all of its mechanics done (thank you patpot), and is just waiting on the actual production process, while “Hard Rank Dungeon II” requires less production work than the first. The tech for Masterwork and Core Runes was finished a few weeks ago, so the Rune tasks just involve creating a very large number of Runes that use that aforementioned tech.

Anyhoo. Our Discord chat has been re-opened in the wake of the first testing phase, so if you left it before, now is a great time to come back! Come hang out with us @ https://rotf.io/discord 🙂

We’ll put some keys up here soon. Thanks for reading!

The characters within these keys have all been shifted +1 (A -> B, B -> C, Z -> A, 1 -> 2, 3 -> 4, 9 -> 0). You’ll need to shift each character -1 to get the real keys!

Ciphered Keys:

  • UL6D-0K0O-NY3R-ZTST
  • P3Y8-4SRI-6CY0-Y9R0
  • UCER-QG5N-FIEQ-XJU3

Shift the keys back, then use at https://rotf.io/register. Good luck!

Revenge of the Fallen: Loki & Hela, Asgard Dungeon Preview continued

Hello everybody! It is I, patpot, here once again to brief you all on what we’ve been working on. Last week, the team took on the first two bosses of the Asgard dungeon. For those who missed, it I highly recommend checking it out.

While the All-father himself won’t be making his debut in this post, we’re excited to show you some gameplay of the team taking on two of his children, Loki and Hela.

part 2 electri- wait, no, Thor was in the first video

So, that’s Loki and Hela. Some things to point out from the video:

  • Miniguy can’t dod-. For paycheck reasons I cannot finish that sentence

But more seriously:

  • As you might have noticed from our last few updates, we’re really trying to up our visual game. We’ve picked up some lighting tricks, many of which are on display in the Helheim (Hela) segment. Quaximi and MrFoucs went pretty hard.
  • While the numbers on everything are still placeholder, we have now completed a “first pass” of all four root classes and their abilities. We’re hoping to say more about them soon, but for now, you can watch the video and speculate.
  • Placeholder (but functional) death UI has been added. Being the responsible developer that I am, I died in the video to test it out. We have a lot of plans for permadeath in RotF, but this will work for now.
  • The 3D terrain and architecture throughout this dungeon looks great, but there are a few times where it can occlude your vision—particularly noticeable during Thor’s fight from last week. This will be fixed, and we appreciate all the feedback you’ve given us about the issue.
  • We’re still polishing Loki’s arena, which has a few unintended safe spots (notably, if you’re like Miniguy, you can literally just walk out of the pit when you fail to dodge). This issue will be fixed before release. We expect design issues like these to show up periodically in more subtle ways, so keep giving us feedback!

Here are some snippets from the video that we’re especially proud of.

Making your way to Hela:

it’s glowing…

During the Loki fight:

little lokis love lasers!

Fighting Hela: (good luck)

holy hel…

For those interested in joining us for Closed Testing, this post will be updated in 15 minutes time with a fun trivia game. As per usual, solve it first, and you’ll have yourself a key!

Also, since this post is a bit late, we’ll throw a second key up tomorrow. Thank you very much for reading.

Now, the third and final key for this post! (use at https://rotf.io/register)
[1]FK6-[2]P1V-[3]JZKOP[4]L
There’s been a lot of trivia going around, so to spice things up, I hid the missing letters in the two images on this post. Each letter is numbered, if you look really closely. I’m sure you can piece it together. Fill in the key as usual, and enjoy the hunt!

Here’s the promised second key! (use at https://rotf.io/register)
[1]6PGUXX[2]-W[3A][3B]U-[4]V18

[1] The first letter of the name of the testing period RotF is planned to enter this month
[2] The first letter of the type of previews the last two blog posts have been
[3A, 3B] The time span closed testing was originally meant to release in (2 characters)
[4] The first letter of the name of the senior designer in charge of all our 3d work

First key: (use at https://rotf.io/register)

[1]X56-[2]PDM-[3]07Z-YL8[4]

[1] The first letter of the name of the Underworld in Norse mythology.
[2] The first letter of the name of the Allfather mentioned at the beginning of this post.
[3] The first letter of the name of the god of mischief.
[4] The first letter of the name of the legacy RotF Necropolis item that gave invisible, damaging, berserk, speedy, and darkness (not including the word “the”). The *_ _ _ of Twilight

Revenge of the Fallen: Thor & Heimdallr, Asgard Dungeon Preview

It’s Saturday, and you know what that means: it’s time for another devlog! I’ve been looking forward to this one, since I think exemplifies our “core design” principles for dungeons and fights in rotf2. The video preview is a bit long, but I really hope you watch it in full—the playthrough is a bit insane.

Take a look:

these are only the first two bosses…

Like with our post about Nyx, the Molten Mistress, I’ll highlight a few areas from the dungeon that we’re particularly excited about.

Here’s a shot from the Bifrost. Worthiness seems to be a rather prominent theme throughout Asgardian lore, so players need to pass through the Bifrost to continue the dungeon.

just dodge lol

Players that fail to reach the end of the Bifrost to help defeat Heimdallr will be beamed all the way back to the Observatory. They will be unable to complete the rest of the dungeon.

i didn’t make it to heimdallr. i wasn’t worthy.

But that’s a bit further ahead. The dungeon begins in a spiraling mountain. We’re still mastering the use of verticality in rotf2, so if you see any oddities, let us know! That said, this climb at the entrance of the dungeon is one of the many benefits that the new engine affords us. Quaximi is smurfing on art, as always.

the second ring of the mountain.

There’s a lot of other juice here that you might notice see when you watch the video (screen shake, anyone?), and we’ll continue to look for ways we can add flavor to our worlds. This dungeon includes work from practically everyone on the team, and I think it shows!

This post will be updated with a CT key within 10 mins of its publication. You know what to do: refresh, refresh, refresh!

Closed testing key:

[1]LQU-F[2]J6-C[3]N6-OO[4]K

[1] The number of realms in Yggdrasil, not including Asgard.
[2] The first letter of the name of Thor’s brother, the god of mischief.
[3] The first letter of the home of the frost giants.
[4] The first letter of the source of the mythology that inspired this dungeon.

The start of closed testing is coming up soon. Are y’all excited? https://rotf.io/register

Caramel Carnival Preview and Important Closed Testing Information

Hey all. We know it’s been quiet around here, so we wanted to give you an update on Closed Testing and a bit of the content we’ve been working on for Revenge of the Fallen.

We recorded a small preview of the Carmel Carnival dungeon, an early-game area meant for characters that are yet to reach level 20. Take a look:

We’re still polishing experiences like this dungeon. Holding ourselves to higher design standards, in code, art, and in gameplay, means that we’re ~80% of the way to closed testing, but we need more time to get everything ready. Unfortunately, this means Closed Testing will be pushed back until February. For more information on this decision, see the follow-up post here.

Revenge of the Fallen: Animations, Stats and UI for all

Hi all – patpot here! I’ve taken over the blog for this progress update.

A lot of you have seen the first draft of our realm system in the gameplay preview trailer, running with mostly legacy content. Since the release of that trailer, we’ve been working on the first three major home-grown biomes for the new realms. We’ve shown some concept art for it, and we’ll show a bit more stuff in this post, but expect a full teaser in the future.

Each biome is meant to be a splash of its respective dungeon, so it’s really important that the biome feels consistent, and distinct from other areas. Meeting this goal required a complete overhaul of our animation system. Miniguy had written the foundation of the new system a while back, and by finalizing it, we get to do magic—like adding some of the animations that our designers (Quaximi and MrFoucs in particular!) have been working on.

First look at animations for the Gelatinous Palace—wobbly!

As Q4 2020 approaches (along with our closed testing deadline), we’ve started adding some core UI that we need for the game to be playable. As with most of our UI, this isn’t final at all, but it moves us closer to our baseline. Here’s a WIP (placeholder?) player tooltip, for example:

Quick tip: tool.

And since we’re launching with a fresh database, I thought, “yeah, we should fill that up. with stuff.” I’ve been working on adding some lifetime stat trackers, so that you’ll be able to view your characters’ progression and accomplishments. Here’s what we’ve got so far:

For our NPE video makers to show that, yes, their RNG is that good.

Thank you for reading, as always! For those of you that scrolled down here immediately: respect, but be sure to read everything when you come back! 🙂

CLOSED TESTING KEY: IQHT-TD88-XF6O-22AF
https://rotf.io/register

ACED Games: RotF when?

Featured

Hi all. I’m Miniguy of ACED Games/Revenge of the Fallen. This blog’s been pretty silent recently, which is probably no surprise to some of you. Let’s talk about why we’ve been silent, and what’s going on with RotF.

First, in case you missed it: RotF was originally conceived as a private server for the multiplayer bullet hell Realm of the Mad God, one of many distinct versions of the game run by fans like us. But unlike those many other versions, we had a large, active playerbase, a decent amount of replayable content, and a skill system that rewarded player creativity. In other words: we made something good.

Unfortunately, for the first time in RotMG private server history, we were too good. We had been trying to negotiate a deal where we’d be able to run RotF with a license to the (shrinking amount of) RotMG content we were using. Although early talks seemed very promising, our rep at RotMG went silent suddenly for nearly a month. Then, in a complete 180, the RotMG developers decided that we were a threat to their business, and issued us a DMCA takedown request. We were forced to close down everything, cold turkey. They weren’t necessarily wrong to do this–after all, we were using their assets–but it left us in an awkward spot. More importantly, it left YOU guys in an awkward spot! Where the heck is the game?

I wish I could give you guys some concrete dates for a release, or some specific information on some of the crazy content that we have planned. Naturally, I can’t do any of that–we don’t want to promise anything we can’t deliver. This is the honest reason for the radio silence.

That said, I’ve been working on a complete revamp of our server/netcode since August. As of yesterday, I’m proud to say that I’ve essentially achieved that goal (there’s always more work to be done, but we now have a solid foundation). As a result, we’ve got the core team–myself, Skilly, Mike, and Quaximi–all working on code, mechanics, and general design for all that crazy stuff I mentioned earlier. I know it seems like we’re attempting an insurmountable task, but I promise that we’ll come back sooner than you might expect, with a loot-based, multiplayer bullet hell game that we hope will be genre-defining. Don’t miss it.

Thank you guys so much for the support. It means everything to see our community remain active, especially in our #premium chat on Discord–y’all are crazy.

-Miniguy