Release 42: May 25, 2017
Thank you for your continuing support of Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues! We’ve provided information here on what is available in the current build of the game for you to explore, test, and give feedback on. If you are a returning player, features that are new for this release are marked as [New] and highlighted.
Besides the system specification to run the game, the following firewall ports must be open for the Launcher and Game Client to run properly.
SotA can be played on Windows, OSX (Macintosh), and Linux computers. The game may be played though our custom launcher (available below) or through the Steam client.
The Steam client can be downloaded and installed for free from the link below.
If you do not have a Steam account already, you will be prompted to create one on first starting the client.
SotA Early Access is available through the Steam client. You may purchase the game directly through the client, or online from the link below.
If you already have a SotA account and have purchased a pledge, you do not need to buy the game again to play it through Steam. You may attach your existing SotA account and pledge to a Steam account, adding SotA to your Steam Library and allowing you to download and play the game through Steam.
To connect your SotA and Steam accounts go to https://www.shroudoftheavatar.com/, and click on the “Login” button.
After you enter your username and password, go to your “Account” page (via the link in the upper right corner of the screen) and scroll down to the “Game Client Download” section. The “Play SotA through Steam” heading will allow you to attach your SotA account to your Steam account.
If you are already logged into Steam on the computer in question you may choose the “Sign in through Steam” option while logging into the SotA website. This will also allow you to connect your SotA and Steam accounts.
Download the installer file, “SotAInstaller.exe” from the link below.
Running this file will install the Shroud of the Avatar Launcher application, which will download the rest of the game. We recommend having at least 4GB of free disk space on the drive you install to, though the game will only download about 1.5GB of data. Note that downloading and installing the game may take some time, especially on slower Internet connections.
You can update the game for future releases by running the Launcher again; there is no need to re-download it.
The Launcher uses BitTorrent bandwidth sharing to distribute the Shroud of the Avatar game files to other players. Leaving the Launcher open will help us and others by providing some of your bandwidth to assist others in downloading the game, but doing so is optional. If you do not wish to use BitTorrent at all, you can turn it off via an option in the Options screen of the Launcher.
From the option screen, you can also specify using “borderless window mode” (a special windowed mode that aligns with the primary monitor of your system, which is helpful for users with multiple monitors).
Once the game has finished downloading and is patched to the latest version, you can click the “Launch Game” button to play the game.
Download the installer package from the link below.
Open the file (which by default should be in your Downloads directory) and run it; it is a standard installer file that will install “Shroud of the Avatar - Launcher” to your Applications directory.
Running the Launcher will download the rest of the game and allow you to launch it from there. We recommend having at least 4GB of free disk space on the drive you installed the Launcher to, though the game will only download about 1.5GB of data. Note that downloading and installing the game may take some time, especially on slower Internet connections.
You can update the game for future releases by running the Launcher again; there is no need to re-install it.
The Launcher uses BitTorrent bandwidth sharing to distribute the Shroud of the Avatar game files to other players. Leaving the Launcher open will help us and others by providing some of your bandwidth to assist others in downloading the game, but doing so is optional. If you do not wish to use BitTorrent at all, you can turn it off via an option in the Options screen.
Once the game has finished downloading and is patched to the latest version, you can click the “Launch Game” button to play the game.
If you have participated in previous releases, and have an older “Shroud of the Avatar” or “Shroud of the Avatar - Launcher” app outside of Applications, you should delete it as it is no longer needed.
We offer a debian package and a simple tarball of the game launcher’s file. The package is the preferred way of installing the game, but if you run into troubles or your distribution doesn’t handle .deb packages, fall back to downloading an archive containing the program’s files.
Download the .deb package shroud-of-the-avatar-launcher_1.0.0_amd64.deb from the link below.
For the “latestPatcherLinux.tar.gz” raw archive, use the link below.
Both contain the Shroud of the Avatar Launcher application, which will download the rest of the game. If you use a Gnome or KDE based desktop, the application should register correctly and can be launched from e.g. your dash. If not, included are two launcher binaries, “Shroud of the Avatar - Launcher.x86” and “Shroud of the Avatar - Launcher.x86_64.” Run the one most appropriate for your system architecture (most likely “Shroud of the Avatar - Launcher.x86_64”). When using the .deb package, you can run also simply run “shroud-of-the-avatar-launcher.”
We recommend having at least 4GB of free disk space on the drive you install to, though the game will only download about 1.5GB of data. Note that downloading and installing the game may take some time, especially on slower Internet connections.
You can update the game for future releases by running the Launcher again; there is no need to re-download it.
The Launcher uses BitTorrent bandwidth sharing to distribute the Shroud of the Avatar game files to other players. Leaving the Launcher open will help us and others by providing some of your bandwidth to assist others in downloading the game, but doing so is optional. If you do not wish to use BitTorrent at all, you can turn it off via an option in the Options screen of the Launcher.
Once the game has finished downloading and is patched to the latest version, you can click the “Launch Game” button to play the game.
Players can change the location where their Shroud of the Avatar data is stored, including saved games, music files, etc.
Manual Data Migration Instructions: To migrate your existing data into a different directory, follow the instructions below:
Once you launch the game, you will be prompted to log in after the initial screens.
User accounts are handled through the Shroud of the Avatar website at https://www.shroudoftheavatar.com/. If you are a Kickstarter backer, you need to link your Kickstarter pledge to a Shroud of the Avatar account at our website to gain access to the game. Otherwise, a Shroud of the Avatar account is created for you when you purchase game access for $40.00 or greater. Your Shroud of the Avatar user name and password is used to access the game, even in Single Player Online mode.
The default match-making mode for online play is “Multiplayer Online,” in which you play Shroud of the Avatar in the same game world as all other "Multiplayer Online" players. Choose “Single Player Online” or "Friends Only" to play Shroud of the Avatar in your own private space while still being able to see players in your party, as well as the persistent works of other players such as houses and Player-Owned Towns. Choose whichever you prefer; you play the same character in either and can switch your character to another play mode at any time. While playing online, you can quickly switch between Multiplayer, Friends, and Single Player modes without having to log out of the game. To do so, go to the "Multiplayer" section of the Options Menu and choose a "Matchmaking Mode" (Multiplayer Online, Friends Online, or Single Player Online). If you choose to proceed with the change, the scene will reload and you'll be playing in the new mode.
If you already have created a character, you will be asked whether to play Shroud of the Avatar with that character or delete it so that you can create a new one. Otherwise, you will be taken to avatar creation after logging in.
Playing Offline requires no internet connection or log-in process. Your Offline Avatar and your Online Avatar are separate characters. In Offline mode, you will never encounter other Avatars, and elements placed by or dependant on them (such as player merchants, auctions, guilds, Player-Owned Towns, and PvP) will be absent. You can explore, fight, craft, and follow questlines in Offline mode the same as in Online.
In Offline mode, your Avatar and progress are saved constantly (much like in Online mode). You may exit to the menu or quit the game at any point and your Avatar will be as they were when you next resume play. You may also manually create save files with the Save Game button on the Options menu.
Save files can be loaded from the character selection screen through the Load Game button. Loading a save restores your Avatar, world, and progress to exactly as they were when the save file was created. Any progress since then will be lost forever, unless you make an alternate save before loading your previous one.
Playing in Offline mode also allows you to recruit non-player character (NPC) Companions to accompany you in your travels and aid you in combat. Fiona in Peladjar's Tavern in Ardoris is one such Companion. These NPCs exist and can be conversed with in Online mode, but will not accompany you as Companions.
On creating a new Avatar, you will first be prompted to choose a name and select a gender.
Your name is checked to see if it is valid and not already in use. The combination of first and last names are unique; you can share the same first name as someone or the same last name, but not both. If your name is rejected, the reason will appear in the status line below. Gender only affects Avatar appearance and (in the future) minor changes to how non-player characters respond.
After clicking “Proceed,” you will appear on the Isle of Storms, floating high above a mysterious planet. At this point, you are without form or body. A helpful woman named Arabella will direct you to a nearby magic mirror.
Double-clicking on the magic mirror will bring up a series of tabbed options and sliders for customizing your face and body. Everything from hair and eye color to ear size and positioning can be adjusted to your liking. Once your Avatar is created, it is possible to change your appearance again later at a New You shop by spending Gold Crowns of the Obsidians (a.k.a. “Gold Crowns”). Click “Finish” in the last customization tab to assume the physical body you have chosen.
Now that you have a body, proceed to the Oracle Confirmatory and speak to the Oracle Automaton there. When prompted, she will ask you a series of questions to help divine your destiny. While there are no wrong answers, your choices will determine your starting skills, equipment, location, and quests. If you disagree with the Oracle’s analysis, you may request a different starting skill set and location after you have answered all her questions (but before you have left the Isle of Storms).
When ready, proceed to the top of the Isle of Storms and walk into the Lunar Rift.
After passing through the lunar rift you will find yourself in the world of New Britannia.
The menus for the game appear in the upper-right corner. They are described in more detail below.
At the top of the screen is a compass, along with the name of the area you are currently in (in this example, the village of Braemar).
A view of your health and focus (and those of your party members) appears in the upper left-hand corner. The stats of the NPC in your reticle appear next to those.
By default, your conversation log appears in the lower left corner, though it can be moved.
After you leave the Isle of Stokrms, the Combat Hotbar will appear at the bottom of your screen. By default, the Combat Hotbar is always visible and will include your starting skills. You'll add other skills to this hotbar over time. Eventually you'll be able to unlock the Utility Hotbar, which can include non-combat spells, maps, and some consumables. Potions and other consumables can still be used in combat, they just need to be part of your Deck. Hotbars, Decks, and potions are described in more detail in the Deck and Deck Building section.
The available menus in the upper right of the interface are described below, in order from left to right.
If this is the first time you have played the game, helpful hints will pop up to explain different controls and concepts at the appropriate time. If you do not wish to see these hints, simply uncheck the “Show Hints” box in game options. If you wish to review them again, click on the “Reset Hints” button in the game options. Your inventory also contains a helpful “Notes for New Players” book to review at your leisure.
Shroud of the Avatar includes several other help displays.
You can move through the game world using the W, A, S, and D keys (often abbreviated as WASD, and used similar to most other PC games). You can redefine these keys to any others preferred (the arrow keys, for example) in the Controls section of the options menu. Also, holding both the left and right buttons down simultaneously (only in Interactive mode), or holding down the middle mouse button/wheel, will move the Avatar in the direction they are facing.
Double-tapping W will cause the Avatar to sprint forward for as long as you hold the W key. This allows faster movement at the cost of a constant drain on Focus.
The E key will interact with whatever the mouse cursor (in Interactive Mode) or reticle (in Targeting Mode) is over, as if you had double-clicked on it. Bodies and chests will be looted, resources nodes will be harvested, doors will be opened, etc.
Pressing the SPACEBAR key will cause your Avatar to jump. The longer you hold down the SPACEBAR, the higher the Avatar will jump. Jumping consumes a small amount of Focus, but has a chance (about 20%) to break stun and root effects. This can be very useful when fighting other players.
Double-tapping A, S, or D (in combat stance) allows you to perform a quick directional roll left, back, or right respectively. Rolling consumes Focus and requires a short break before it can be done again. Rolling can be disabled from the Game Options menu if desired.
You can swim simply by moving into deep water. You cannot currently swim underwater, jump, or engage in combat while swimming.
You may toggle between running and walking (for example, someone role-playing an event may find it inappropriate to be constantly running everywhere) by using the / (FORWARD SLASH) key on the numeric keypad. The chat command /walk will also do this.
Pressing the Number Pad “+” key will cause your avatar to “auto-run,” or move without a key being pressed. Pressing the Number Pad “+” key again will cancel this.
Pressing the TAB key will mark an enemy in front of you with a target icon, setting it as your current target. Additional presses of TAB will cycle the target icon through available enemy targets. (More details on that are below.)
The “Toggle First-Person” hotkey (V by default) toggles between the three different camera modes, first-person, third person centered, and third-person “over the shoulder.” In both third-person views you can zoom the camera in and out by scrolling the mouse wheel.
There are two primary modes of interacting with the world: Interactive mode and Targeting mode. Interactive mode is the default mode used by all players and is easily identified by the pointer usable to interact with objects in the game. Targeting mode is easily identified mouse movements controlling the facing of the camera, also known as “mouselook.” Targeting mode is not available until a hotkey is set for the “Toggle Cursor” control in the the Options menu.
Interactive mode has a mouse cursor on screen at all times, allowing access to menu options and user interface elements. Even when not in Interactive mode, the game automatically enters Interactive mode when you open a menu or use an object that requires the mouse to use properly, such as when you open a chest or enter conversation with an NPC.
Holding down the Right Mouse Button in Interactive mode allows you to move the camera around for a better view. If you aren’t comfortable with this default setting, you may invert how this works with an option in the Options Menu (the gear icon). Holding down both the Left and Right Mouse Buttons at the same time causes the Avatar to run forward (outside of combat stance).
You may enter combat stance in Interactive mode. In Interactive mode, select enemies using TAB or by double-clicking on them with the mouse cursor will set them as your target, and you will always swing, fire, or cast at that target so long as you are facing them. If you do not have a set target, left-clicking will cause the Avatar to swing or fire their equipped weapon towards the reticle, regardless of where the cursor is.
Targeting mode has is no mouse cursor on-screen. Moving the mouse moves your view in the corresponding direction. You may move normally with the WASD keys or by holding the Right Mouse Button.
Pay attention to the reticle on your screen. The reticle changes depending on what sort of object or creature you are looking at or have targeted.
Double left-clicking when the reticle is over an object causes the Avatar to interact with it in the appropriate way. Switches will be flipped, doors will be opened or closed, NPCs will be conversed with, and resource nodes will be harvested.
By default, entering combat stance (with the Z key) automatically switches to Targeting mode. This can be disabled from the options menu if desired. When in combat stance, click the left mouse button to make the Avatar swing their melee weapon or fire their ranged weapon.
If the reticle is over a sufficiently close enemy, the Avatar will attack them. The reticle will snap to the enemy and turn into a red crosshair if they are close enough to hit. Ranged spells (like Fire Arrow) will be cast at whatever the reticule is over.
To make Targeting mode available, you must open the Options menu, go to the Controls section, and assign a key to the “Toggle Cursor” control. When a key is assigned to the Toggle Cursor control, you may toggle between the two modes at any time by pressing the “Toggle Cursor” key.
Shroud of the Avatar uses two map scales: scene and overworld. Scenes are where players have adventures, trade with merchants, harvest resource nodes, craft new gear, decorate their homes, and live their virtual lives. Players use an overworld map to travel from one scene to another.
Arriving in a new scene or the overworld causes Avatars to glow as the Oracle extends her protection; making them briefly invulnerable. This effect only lasts a few seconds. Attacking monsters or hostile Avatars breaks the effect early. Use the WASD keys to move around the map.
The overworld is used to travel between towns and areas of adventure. It’s a large interactive map of the world laid out using an invisible hexagonal grid. (There will be the option to display this grid in future releases) Shroud of the Avatar has two overworld maps: Novia and Hidden Vale.
There are many places in the overworld that connect to other areas. Often, the name of such an area will appear over an “Enter” button when you are close enough. To enter such a place, double-click the “Enter” button at the bottom of the screen, or press the E key. If you are in a party, the location of your party members will be shown on this map. Adventure scenes and large NPC towns that can be accessed from the overworld have a banner with runic text floating over them.
Traveling across the Overworld exposes you to ambush from dangerous creatures. If you encounter roving enemies, you will be pulled into a small scene where you must slay your attackers or escape. On leaving the encounter scene, you will find yourself back on the overworld and can resume your travels.
If you try to enter a town under siege with an experienced character, you will be pulled into a siege scene where you can return to where you came from or fight your way to the far side. However, if your character is new and inexperienced, you will bypass the siege completely and receive a message: "Due to your relatively low power, sympathetic defenders wave you through the siege lines directly into the town."
Roads are generally faster and safer to travel on, while deep wilderness areas will slow travel and contain more danger.
Scenes offer many opportunities for adventure and interaction. In these maps, you’ll explore new wilderness locations, delve into dangerous dungeons, combat fierce enemies, solve puzzles, trade with others, and more.
Most of the time, you’ll enter a scene on it’s edge and next to an exit. Many outdoor scenes have at least one stone archway like the one pictured below. These archways are designed to help you know where the edge of the map is and how you can quickly exit the scene. You will know if you are about to leave the area thanks to a “fading out to black” effect as you walk through the exit area. Often, a scene will have additional exits along the edge of the map, but you might also find caves, boats, or secret doors that might also send you to a new location.
Some areas of the game have entrances to other areas of adventure. For example, entry to the Ravensmoor Dungeon requires navigating through foggy surface ruin guarded by undead and finding the entrance carved out of the rocky shore. Many areas of adventure have similar entrances to discover.
Fast-Travel Scrolls: Magical Recall and Teleport scrolls allow Avatars to cross vast distances instantly. New player-characters start with three of each type of scroll, but they are also created by alchemists.
Avatars may bind themselves to a lot or town by interacting with the lot sign or town crier. An Avatar can use a Recall scroll to return to the last location they bound themselves to. Teleport scrolls move an Avatar to the entrance of the scene of another Avatar in their party, friends list, or guild roster.
Both fast-travel scroll types are used from the non-combat hotbar and are consumed on use.
Other Fast-Travel Means: Some areas of the game can be accessed via fast travel.
All character management windows are available via hotkeys, or as a list from the stained glass window icon in the top right menu.
The character menu (C key or Crossed Sword and Shield icon) will bring up your Avatar’s paperdoll and basic character information.
The journal (J key) keeps track of information that your Avatar learns through her travels in New Britannia.
If a quest sends you into an area that requires combat (such as a dungeon or hostile area), the journal entry will warn you when the difficulty of the area is more than you can currently handle. As your skills grow in power, the evaluation in your journal will change.
The inventory screen (I key or Saddlebag icon) will toggle opening or closing your inventory bags. Note that there are two ways of displaying inventory, a list of your items and a graphic representation that may be familiar to players of other older role playing games. You can switch between the two via the “Use List Inventory Mode” checkbox in your options menu. More detail on using your avatar’s inventory is detailed below.
The N key displays the names of other players and NPCs over their head. This is not active by default.
This also toggles NPC health bars and combat damage feedback. If names are hidden, so are health bars and combat feedback.
NPCs that have available quests for you will be highlighted in blue. If they are currently part of a quest you are on, they will continue to be highlighted blue and appear as a point of interest on your compass, as well.
Avatars with green names are friendly and cannot be attacked. In PvP scenes (at present), this will only be party members. Avatars with yellow names are hostile and can attack, and be attacked, by you. Avatars with purple names are Shroud of the Avatar developers. Be sure to give us feedback on the game if you see us!
By default, you only see the full name of NPCs that you know; otherwise you will see a descriptive title such as “Guard” or “Shopkeeper.” To learn the names of NPCs, talk to them and ask them their name!
The emotes menu (O key) allows you to perform a variety of useful and fun animations that others around you will see. Many emotes are earned from completing quests. Others can be taught by other Avatars via the trade interface. Simply drag any emote listed as “Teachable” or “Re-teachable” from the emotes list to your side of the trade interface to offer teaching it as part of a trade.
You will begin the game with a small selection of "starter" emotes, along with any Pledge Reward or Add-On emotes belonging to your user account. Any learned emotes (via either quest rewards or trade) are added to your user account, such that all future characters created under that user account will have the same emotes. These emotes are wiped during a character wipe (except for emotes acquired via pledge rewards/add-ons).
The compass is at the top-center of your game window. The name of the town or area you are currently in is displayed underneath the compass, along with the date according to the New Britannian calendar and general time of day. Some points of interest (such as scene exits) will display icons on the compass showing their direction once you discover them.
You can toggle a window with a map by pressing the M key. This source of this interactive map is www.sotamap.com, and it is supported by players like yourself.
Your avatar’s skill trees can be accessed via the K key. Avatar improve learned skills through practice and use. More on skill usage and improvement is detailed below. You must be at a skill trainer NPC to learn new skills, which also costs gold. Skills without icons are not yet implemented. Note that skill trainers will only display skills which they can train. For example, a crafting trainer will only display crafting skills in the skills window.
The Glyphs for active Adventuring Skills your avatar knows and consumable items you possess are accessed from the Glyphs window. From here, you may drag Glyphs to your hotbar for use in the world, or into the deck builder screen for building a combat deck. The Combos tab allows you to review valid Glyph Combos. Note that many Glyphs and Combos may only be used in combat. The interface for combat deck building is opened via the Y key and is detailed below.
The B key opens the crafting journal. You begin already knowing a few recipes, and any new ones that you discover, buy, or are taught are recorded here. The crafting journal is used frequently in crafting, which is detailed below.
The F key brings up the Social menu where you can manage your friends, party members, and guild (if you are a guild member).
The H key will bring up the Blocked users list that will block any users from appearing within your chat window.
The SEMICOLON (;) key will bring up the Warfare tab, allowing you to track the progress of any ongoing wars your guild is involved in.
The F11 key will take a screenshot of the game and automatically save it to a "SotA" subfolder within your operating system's “Pictures” folder. The exact location of this Pictures\Sota subfolder will vary by operating system.
The Alt-F4 key combo or left-clicking the options menu “Quit” tab will exit the game.
You can close all open interface screens via the ESC key. Pressing ESC with no interface screens open will bring up the options menu.
Typing /AFK puts your avatar in AFK mode. Your avatar sits down and AFK is appended to their nameplate. Moving cancels AFK mode.
You may drag items like potions and select non-combat spells (like light) to the non-combat hotbar at the bottom of the screen. The non-combat "utility" hotbar will stay visible during combat (under the combat hotbar), allowing potions, food, and other items in that bar to be used during combat. Consumables used from this hotbar will have the same cool down values that the combat hotbar uses. A small selection of "utility spells" are also useable from here as well, including Light, Night Vision, and Resurrection.
Select buffs (like the light and night-vision spells) may be removed before they expire naturally by right-clicking on their icon beneath the health and focus bars.
Keyboards by select manufacturers, like Razer and Alienware, can be set to change colors based on the in-game action by checking the Peripheral Lighting checkbox under Video Options. Appropriately enabled keyboards will shift from green to red as you take damage, highlight keys that form valid combos or are mentioned in tutorials, strobe colors while you /dance, and more.
While adventuring, you can bring up a player menu by right-click on another Avatar. This allows you to perform a variety of interactions with that Avatar,such as inviting them to your party, sending them a whisper, examining their worn equipment, or offering to trade with them.
Trade opens the Secure Trade interface, allowing the exchange of gold and items. To trade place your offer on your side and click “Accept Trade” when you’re happy with the trade. The trade only goes through when both parties click “Accept.” Either person can cancel at any time before then.
The trade window can also be opened by dragging and dropping an item onto another Avatar.
Any emote listed as “Teachable” can also be taught to other Avatars through the trade interface, and “Re-Teachable” emotes can be further re-taught after being learned.
Through this menu you can also add/remove a player as a friend, ignore/unignore them, or block/unblock them.
To wear equipment, open the character sheet (C key), drag equipment onto the display avatar or corresponding highlighted equipment slot and release the left mouse button. You may also right-click on items in your inventory and chose to equip them from the drop down menu. Non-equippable Items will automatically be added to your inventory bag if they are dragged onto the Avatar within the world.
To move items into a bag, open the bags inventory interface (I key) and drag items onto the desired bag. Releasing the left mouse button to place the item within the selected bag.
SHIFT + Left-Click allows you to break up stacks of identical items (like arrows or potions).
CTRL + Left-Click pulls a single item from a stack of items.
ALT + Left-Click loots an item from a chest or other container into your inventory, whether it’s a single item or a stack. This can also be accomplished by double-clicking on an item in a chest.
Unwanted items can be deleted by right-clicking on them and selecting the appropriate option from them drop-down menu. Note that items deleted in this fashion are GONE FOR GOOD.
Non-combat items, including consumables like Fireworks and Snowballs, can be used by dragging them from your inventory to a slot on your non-combat hotbar. Then press the appropriate hotkey to use the item. Many items require an appropriate target, like another Avatar (snowballs) or an ore node (mining picks).
An Avatar may carry weight up to their Encumbrance limit without any penalties. Once the Encumbrance limit is exceeded, an Avatar may continue to carry additional weight, but will begin to suffer penalties to movement speed, the dexterity stat, and a constant drain to Focus while moving. The more heavily over-Encumbered an Avatar is, the worse these penalties become.
Your Encumbrance can be tracked on your character sheet. Becoming Encumbered will also generate a debuff icon below your health and focus bars to warn you and inform you of the specific penalty level you have incurred. Increasing your Strength statistic and select skills in the Tactics skill tree can increase your Encumbrance limit.
If Encumbrance becomes a problem, consider selling items to a merchant or storing them at a bank. Completely unwanted items can be deleted by right-clicking on them and choosing the appropriate option from the dropdown menu. Avatars who own property can also place decorations that serve as containers, like chests, and use them to store excess items in their homes.
The bank is an excellent resource for storing loot, crafting materials, spare equipment, and more. While bank inventory and weight limits are not unlimited, using it can help you manage your encumbrance level and inventory effectively. The default inventory and weight limit is relatively low, but may be permanently upgraded by spending gold in game. Some pledge levels begin with additional bank space, and more space can also be purchased via the add-on store.
Bank NPCs are found in major cities. Interacting with a banker opens the Bank window, allowing you to deposit and withdraw items by dragging them to and from your inventory. This is free, but be aware you can only withdraw an item from the specific bank you deposited that item at. You may still see what items you have deposited at different banks, but may not withdraw them unless you return to that specific bank. In later releases, it may be possible to have items shipped from one bank to another for a fee.
If you change the house on your lot or unclaim your lot entirely, all decorations will be routed to the nearest bank. The bank will accept these items even if doing so would overload the item or weight limit, but you will not be able to bank new items until you clear sufficient space or weight. You may also claim the proceeds from vendor sales at the bank closest to the vendor.
Players can view a list of all items that they have listed for sale on player-owned Vendors throughout New Britannia. This is accessible via the cog context menu button in the bank interface, and should help players locate items that may have moved via the Property Manager. Items in the list may be sent to the local bank in order to easily retrieve items that may be placed on a vendor that is currently in storage.
Note that your bank contents are attached to your account, not your character. If you delete your current character your bank contents will remain accessible to any new characters you create on the same account. It is strongly recommended you store any irreplaceable or valuable items (like house and land deeds) in your bank before creating a new character.
Any Reward items not issued to your Avatar automatically on creation can be retrieved from the bank with the “Claim Rewards” button. Newly-claimed rewards appear in green. Reward items should be returned to the bank to be claimed again if held by an Avatar when that Avatar is deleted.
Backers will find any reward packages included for their pledge level in their bank. These items will end with the word “Reward.” For example: “Non-Combat Pet Reward.”
Many rewards require a choice between several mutually exclusive items. If a reward requires a choice between items, double clicking on the “Reward” item will open a window that allows you to select the reward you want. Once you have made your choice the “Reward” item will be replaced in your inventory with the actual useable item This choice cannot be reversed or undone, so please choose carefully!
If the reward package included several items but does not require an exclusive choice, simply opening the reward item will deposit all the items into your inventory without requiring further input.
Select backers and patrons of the add-on store will find themselves in possession of a general class of items called “Mystery Boxes.” Examples include Cornucopias, the Artisan Box of Plenty, and the Replenishing Snowball Box.
All Mystery Box items periodically generate items for their owner when double-clicked on. While Mystery Boxes can be placed as decorations they are not containers, or able to be opened and closed. When used they simply deposit the items directly into your inventory.
Some Mystery Boxes only generate new items at a particular time of year. Others generate items daily or weekly. A few Mystery Boxes may generate different items depending on the season or time of year. If you attempt to use a Mystery Box that has already yielded its item(s) for this period of time you will be notified by a message in the chat log.
Avatars begin play with a few maps and more can be purchased, found, or given as rewards for helping NPCs.
Maps can be used directly from your inventory or dragged to a non-combat hotbar slot and used from there.
If you view the map for a scene you are currently in you will be able to see your Avatar’s current location and facing, represented as a small red triangle. This can make finding your way around much easier.
Interactive objects in the world can either be interacted with by placing the reticle or mouse cursor over them and double left-clicking. Interactive objects turn the reticle and mouse cursor green. Note that some interactions may be blocked while you are in combat mode.
Below are some examples of interactions:
New Britannia can be a hostile place. At some point, you may find it necessary to defend yourself.
The Z key sheaths and unsheathes your equipped weapons and places you in and out of Combat Stance. Even if you do not carry weapons, you must enter Combat Stance to use combat spells.
There are two primary ways to target and attack enemies, Auto-Attack and Free Attack. Each works a little differently, and you may toggle between them at any time by pressing the “Toggle Attack” hotkey (T by default).
Auto-Attack mode makes the Avatar constantly attack any enemy they are facing, within range of their equipped weapon. (Provided the Avatar is in Combat Stance) You will continue to attack automatically until you move out of range or leave Combat Stance by pressing the Z key.
Auto-Attack mode does not allow you to charge attacks.
[Includes New] Free Attack is an optional advanced technique option for combat that you can unlock during a conversation with most Adventurer Trainers, including master trainers.
Free Attack mode requires more active engagement in combat. When in Combat Stance, you will attack with your equipped weapon whenever you click the left mouse button. You must aim the reticle at an enemy to make sure your attacks hit.
Free Attack mode allows you to charge attacks for additional damage. To charge an attack, hold down the Left Mouse Button while in Combat Stance. A notched status bar will appear at the bottom of the screen and begin to fill. Releasing the Left Mouse Button releases the charged attack. The more notches are filled, the more damage the charged attack will do.
Small, light weapons (like daggers) have short charge bars that only contain a few notches. Heavier weapons (like polearms) have charge bars that contain many notches, allowing the delivery of mighty strikes.
When in combat stance the Avatar will target nearby enemies in range of their equipped weapon, based on position and distance. A red crosshair will “snap” to your target and follow them. You will generally target the closest enemy you can hit, centered in the direction the camera is facing.
If you have multiple targets in range and are using a weapon that can hit multiple enemies at once (such as a halbard) a red crosshair will remain over your primary target while smaller red crosses appear over secondary targets. If you no longer have any valid targets in range then the reticle will return to the center of the screen and return to a white X.
Sometimes you may want to attack something other than the closest enemy, such as an archer or mage in the back of an enemy group. To do so you can assign a “Soft Lock.” Attacks always prioritize your Soft Lock, and you will see their nameplate displayed next to yours in the upper-left of the screen.
You assign a Soft Lock by centering the reticle (or mouse cursor in Interactive mode) over an enemy, and double-Left-Clicking on them. A distinctive circular crosshair appears over your Soft Lock. So long as they are in range and you are generally facing your Soft Lock target, projectile weapons and single target spells will alway be aimed at them. If you swing a melee weapon into a group containing your Soft Lock, the Soft Lock target will always be among the targets attacked.
Pressing the “Next Target” key (G hotkey by default) assigns the closest target as your Soft Lock. Pressing Next Target again cycles through assigning nearby valid targets as your Soft Lock.
Other Avatars and friendly NPCs can be set as your Soft Lock by holding Shift + left-clicking on them. Hostile creatures need only be double-clicked on.
You may also set party members as your Soft Lock, which is useful if you want to heal or buff them during a chaotic battle. Spells like Healing Ray will always hit a friendly Soft Lock, provided they are in range and you are facing their general direction. You may set party members as your Soft Lock by clicking on their nameplates or pressing F1–F8.
Pressing Escape (ESC) clears your Soft Lock.
Nameplates hover over the heads of Avatars, NPCs, and Monsters. These can be toggled on and off with the N hotkey. Options to hide your personal nameplate and hide nameplate of NPCs you haven’t met yet exist in the options menu. The option to toggle the size of the nameplate can be found in the Video menu. Note that toggling nameplate size also toggles chat bubble size.
You can learn much about another Avatar, NPC, or monster by observing the color of their nameplate. Creature nameplates will display different colors, depending roughly on how strong they are compared to your Avatar. The weakest creatures have green nameplates, while the strongest are dark red. The actual difficulty of a given creature can vary depending on your current equipment, skills, and Glyphs deck, but nameplate colors offer a good general guideline.
Defeated enemies that have loot for the Avatar will highlight the cursor and reticle green when hovered over, and can be double left-clicked to bring up the loot window. The party that does the most damage to a monster gets first looting privileges. After five minutes, looting opens to anyone. A lone Avatar counts as a party of one.
Numbers indicating damage dealt and received appear over the Avatar and creature’s heads. These can be disabled with the N key, along with health bars and nameplates.
Focus will begin to regenerate if no skills are used for a short time, but will regenerate slowly with your weapon drawn. Health regenerates very slowly until you sheath your weapon and leave combat.
Double-tapping one of the ASD keys in Combat Stance will perform an evasive roll.
Archers should pay attention to their movement in combat. Bow and crossbow wielders suffer significant penalties to their attack accuracy while running. These penalties become moderate while walking, and disappear entirely while standing still. Only archery weapons incur these penalties.
Remaining motionless for sufficient time grants a bonus to the Critical Chance of spells and decreases their Focus Cost. These benefits stack the longer you remain motionless, up to a point. Movement breaks this effect, though attacking and even being attacked do not. Only spell glyphs benefit from this effect, not combat glyphs.
Enemies prioritize targets based on a variety of factors, but some skills are more likely to draw their focus than others. Armored warriors attempting to hold a monster’s attention will be well served by the Shield Bash and Body Slam skills, while more lightly protected mages should take care with spells like Root and Lightning.
It is possible to dual wield one-handed weapons, but be aware that the Avatar will only attack with their main-handed weapon. Attacking with an off-hand weapon requires skills found in the Tactics tree.
Some creatures are extremely resistant or even immune to certain damage types. For example, Air Elementals aren’t bothered by lightning spells or attacks.
Being behind cover decreases the amount of damage a target will take during combat. Cover is considered any object that blocks, or partially blocks, direct line-of-sight between an attacker and a target.
A note on battling the undead: Undead magi and their Lich masters can use their dark powers to reanimate slain undead. Scholars have noted that undead slain by spells seem more difficult to reanimate, and theorise that hostile magic disrupts the necromantic enchantments holding them together.
As any veteran mage can attest, magic is a difficult and sometimes temperamental art. Many things can interfere with the complex combination of gestures and words required to cast a spell, causing a spell to fail and “Fizzle.” Any Avatar hoping to wield magic in combat should be aware of their Fizzle chance, which represents the percentage chance a spell will fail. Combat skills are not affected by Fizzle chance, only Magic spells.
When a spell Fizzles it costs the normal amount of focus, but the spell is not actually cast. Reagents are not at risk of being consumed. Glyphs dealt into your hand are not consumed or discarded and you can attempt to cast them again. Locked Glyphs do not enter cooldown when they fizzle.
Fizzle is affected by several factors, explained in more detail below.
The most basic factor affecting Fizzle Chance is movement. Fizzle chance increases while walking and running and decreases while standing still. Low tier spells are inherently simpler and easier to cast, even while moving, and suffer less Fizzle chance penalty from movement.
It is harder to cast spells with your hands already full. Mages wielding swords, bows, shields, and other conventional weapons will suffer a higher Fizzle chance. Magic staves, wands, and other magical foci do not inflict this penalty.
Heavier armor can help protect an Avatar in combat, but is difficult to cast spells in. This is represented by the Fizzle attribute on each piece of armor. Some schools of magic (like Life and Earth) are less affected by Fizzle Chance from armor. Other schools (like Death and Air magic) are affected even more than usual. Heavy armor like chainmail and plate generally has a drastic Fizzle chance penalty.
Higher tier spells are significantly more difficult to cast, requiring complex words and gestures. As such the higher the tier of the spell the higher the base Fizzle chance. As your skill in a spell improves so does your mastery of it, reducing the fizzle chance of that spell. Skills that mitigate some Fizzle Chance for all spells can be found in the Focus tree.
The % chance that any spell will cast successfully is displayed on the Glyph on your hotbar. If no % chance is displayed on the spell glyph then it does not have a chance to Fizzle. This information updates in real time. Factors like spell tier and individual skill rank mean that different spells may have very different Fizzle Chances.
If the Avatar drops to 0 health they will be slain and rise as a wandering spirit. Ghosts cannot communicate or interact with the word of the living, and other creatures simply appear as motes of light. A slain avatar has several options for returning to the life.
One option involves an Avatar seeking out one of many mystical glowing Ankhs scattered across the world. These special Ankhs are visible only as a ghost. The locations of these Ankhs are visible on the compass only when your character is dead. Ankhs glow bright blue/green immediately after death, fading slightly towards gray as time passes and the Avatar approaches automatic resurrection. Moving next to an Ankh will resurrect the Avatar at that spot at full Health after thirty seconds. Approaching an Ankh will display a progress bar of how much time remains before you can be resurrected. Dying repeatedly over a short time increases the time it takes an Ankh to resurrect you.
There are rare Chaos icons in the world that are similar to these Ankhs, although they glow red instead of green and send you to a random location in the same scene when they resurrect you. Be wary of resurrecting at a Chaos icon!
Other Avatars with the appropriate spell may resurrect a slain Avatar at the site of their death. Resurrected Avatars return to life at low Health and Focus, but may resume adventuring where they left off.
Avatars will not remain ghosts indefinitely. When players die, a timer appears to show how long before automatic resurrection will be triggered. If no other action is taken, a slain Avatar will eventually, automatically be resurrected at the entrance to the current scene. This is extremely taxing to mind and body, especially to Avatars who have been in New Britannia longer. A veteran Avatar who is automatically resurrected in this fashion will not only return to life with low Health and Focus, but with a sizable temporary penalty to their stats. The physical shock of resurrecting in this fashion inflicts a 5% durability damage penalty to all equipped items.
Inexperienced characters will not receive skill decay on death; characters that are more experienced will begin seeing skill decay when they die. Upon death, skills set to “Training” and “Maintaining” will consume pooled EXP to maintain their current level, and skills set to “Not Training” or “Unlearning” will drop. See the Character Progression section below for details.
Combat wears down weapons and armor, represented by an item’s durability ratings.Resurrecting without the benefit of an Ankh or a Resurrection spell also inflicts durability damage on all equipped items. When an item’s current durability is exhausted it confers no benefits. Broken weapons inflict no damage and broken armor does not protect you. The monetary value of equipment also decreases as it wears out.
Durability has two discrete ratings: current durability and maximum durability. For example, an item with a durability of 63/78 has 63 points of current durability and 78 points of maximum durability. Current durability may not exceed max durability. The (Max 90) after the durability ratings shows the highest possible rating the item can have for maximum durability. In this case the max durability cannot be increased over 90.
Current durability wears out much more quickly than maximum durability. It can be restored “in the field” through the use of repair kits, simply by dragging the appropriate kit onto the desired item in the character sheet or inventory. This requires no special skill or training but is not influenced by, or helps to train, any repair skills. Repair kits repair less current durability on more expensive items, due to the rare and exotic materials used in their construction.
It is more effective to repair items at a crafting table with the appropriate tool and repair kit. This repairs more points of current durability than using a kit in the field, further improving as your relevant repair skill improves. Repairing items at a crafting table helps train your relevant repair skill.
Metal Weapons and Armor
Blacksmithing Repair Proficiency
Cloth and Leather Armor
Tailoring Repair Proficiency
Wooden Items (Such as Bows)
Carpentry Repair Proficiency
Note that there are three different types of repair kits, one for each skill used for repair, and the right kit must be matched to the right item type. You cannot, for example, repair cloth gloves with a Blacksmithing repair kit. Select merchants sell repair kits, and skilled craftsmen can create their own repair kits for use or sale.
Maximum durability drops very slowly, representing long-term systemic wear and stress to an item. Metal can only be beaten back into shape so many times before it starts to degrade. Maximum durability can only be recovered through the use of one of the rare and powerful Crowns of the Obsidians. Founder items and other backer rewards and Add-On store purchases do not lose maximum durability.
Obsidian Crowns are highly sought after relics, though almost any creature in the world has a small chance of yielding one up when slain. Placing any Obsidian Crown on the crafting table with an item and hitting Repair will restore an amount of maximum durability and the highest possible current durability to the item. The amount of maximum durability restored is initially high, but each additional repair will reduced the amount restored. The first repair restores 100%, the second restores 66%, the third 50%, then 40%, then 33%, and so on. By the twentieth repair, only 10 points will be restored to the item’s maximum durability. The Crown is consumed by the repair process. This requires no repair skill to perform.
Crafting and harvesting tools require the use of special Tool Repair Kits to repair. These recover both the tool’s current and maximum durability and do not require a crafting table to use.
A few skill trees (notably the Moon magic and Subterfuge trees) contain Glyphs that allow Avatars to enter stealth. Hostile creatures do not attack stealthed Avatars from as far away, and enemy Avatars see stealthed Avatars as a shimmering blur. Stealth is potentially quite powerful and useful, but has a number of limitations and complications worth keeping in mind.
Some of the deadliest monsters are human—other players who seek the challenge of defeating like-minded players in combat. This is called Player vs. Player combat (usually abbreviated PvP). Shroud of the Avatar has an active PvP community and development continues on creative ways to maim and wound your friends. Note that PvP combat is still in early development and more structure, goals and advancement will be added soon.
The most casual and consensual form of PvP combat is a duel. You may right-click on another Avatar at any time and challenge them to a duel via the drop-down menu. They are free to decline or accept. If they do not respond within a certain amount of time the duel invitation will expire.
Once a duel begins both Avatars can freely use weapons and skills on one another. The duel persists until one Avatar is slain, flees the scene, or forfeits. Either Avatar can forfeit the duel by right-clicking on their opponent and selecting the option from the drop-down menu.
General Player-versus-Player combat is restricted to select scenes, and the removal of the Oracle’s protection can have strange effects on Avatars entering a region. Avatars entering an open-PvP scene from the overworld or an adjacent scene are routed to a random location within that PvP scene. Only members of the same party will arrive at the same spot.
There are several PvP scenes available. The PvP town of Brave Coast can be accessed from Kingsport through a ferry on the dock. The Owl’s Head open-PvP arena is accessible through a door in the wall around uptown Owl’s Head, near The Clink. The team based PvP arena can be accessed through a set of steel double-doors in Ardoris, near the Oracle Confirmatory and crafting pavilion.
The dangerous Verdantis Shardfall can be reached by a boat in the Overworld along the northwest coast, and the equally hazardous Grunvald Shardfall can be reached by trekking north into the desert of Novia. Finally some Player-Owned Towns (such as Vengeance, located in the northeast of the Grunvald region.) permit open-PvP within their borders. Travelers are advised to familiarize themselves with local customs and laws (Provided any exist).
Most PvP scenes currently work as “Free-for-Alls.” You may attack and be attacked by any Avatars not in your party. Spells and weapons work on Avatars just like they do on monsters.
Team combat arenas work a little differently, pitting teams on the sides of Virtue (Blue) and Chaos (Red) against one another. On entering the arena you will be able to choose your team by running through the appropriate portal, which will take you to your team’s preparation room. If one team significantly outnumbers the other the numerically superior team’s portal may temporarily close, routing new players to the team that needs them.
You do not need to be in a party with your team members, though inviting them may help co-ordination in combat. Team matches last ten minutes, and the team with the most kills at the end of this time wins. After the match ends, all Avatars will be teleported back to the team selection lobby.
Arena based PvP areas (but not open world areas like the Brave Coast) allow for non-combat spectators. Spectators cannot harm or help combatants, or each other. In the team combat arena, spectators enter the stands through the portal with the Oracle Eye symbol over it, and are restricted from entering the arena floor. In the free-for-all arenas, spectators may enter the area floor and become combatants. Don’t forget to root for your favorite champions!
Players you can attack (and be attacked by) will have yellow names. Party members will have green names.
Being in a party allows you to use beneficial skills on one another (like healing) and prevents you from harming party members with Area of Effect abilities (like Fireball). You may heal, buff, and resurrect party members even in an open-PvP scene.
Jumping consumes focus but attempting to jump has a chance (20%) to break stun and root effects.
Receiving damage also has a chance to break being rooted or mesmerized. (But not stunned)
Attacks from behind an Avatar will do more slightly more damage.
[Includes New] You may review your performance (And that of allies and enemies) under the PvP stats screen, accessible through NumPad 0 by default and only visible in PvP scenes. Note that the names of hostile Avatars will not show up on this window until you have targeted them. Once you have fought an enemy Avatar they will remain visible on the PvP Stats window until one of you leaves the scene.
With the exception of specific PvP scenes (Shardfalls, arenas, PvP Player-Owned Towns, etc) the power of the Oracle both protects Avatars and prevents them from attacking one another. Avatars may choose to forsake this protection, allowing them to freely attack and be attacked by like-minded individuals.
To enable open-PvP, an Avatar must go to an Oracle Confirmatory and specifically request that the Oracle’s protection be withdrawn. Confirmatories can be found in towns like Brittany, Ardoris, and Kingsport. Note that Avatars who have enabled open-PvP can only freely attack other Avatars who have also enabled open-PvP. They may not attack those who choose to keep the Oracle’s protection (unless they are in a PvP scene, which enables PvP for everyone in it).
Avatars who have not enabled open-PvP may still initiate attacks against open-PvP Avatars. This requires deliberately attacking an open-PvP Avatar, and the attacker will be warned that they are doing so. This forfeits the Oracle’s protection, flagging the attacker for open-PvP allowing any other Avatar to attack you, slay you, and claim your ransom. Note that using healing spells (or other beneficial glyphs) on open-PvP avatars in your party will also flag you for open-PvP.
With open-PvP enabled, you may attack other open-PvP Avatars and be attacked by any other Avatars (which flags them for PvP) at any time. This includes while fighting monsters, harvesting resources, shopping in town, and attempting to enjoy a pint at the local tavern. Guards do not interfere with Outlander-on-Outlander violence.
Party members are protected from one another’s attacks even if both party members have open-PvP enabled. This protection ends the moment the party is dissolved.
Some scenes are set to open PvP. Players that enter an open PvP scene may encounter other players, regardless of the chosen match-making mode (Multiplayer, Single-Player, or Friends Only). While in an open PvP scene, other players can engage you in combat, but as you leave that scene you will maintain your previous mode of Multiplayer, Single-Player, or Friends Only.
The Oracle’s protection can be restored by visiting a Confirmatory and asking her to restore it directly. Only the Oracle can remove a PvP flag from an Avatar. This can be worth keeping in mind if you are tempted to attack a PvP flagged Avatar, but are far from the nearest Confirmatory.
When an Avatar is slain by creatures or the natural forces of New Britannia, their equipment and inventory usually follow them back and forth across the boundaries of life and death. When one Avatar slays another things work a little differently, as the Oracle reaches out with her powers to enforce a ransom for the killing. Ransoms are currently enforced any time one Avatar kills another, be it in a duel, a shardfall, a town that permits PvP, or when two Avatars who have both enabled open-PvP battle anywhere.
An Avatar slain in open-PvP leaves behind an Oracle Marker. Anyone in the party that slew the Avatar (based on damage inflicted) may double-click on this marker to claim the ransom.
Ransoms consist of three items:
Ransomed items can only be drawn from the slain Avatar’s current inventory. Items in the bank or in chests on their property will never be ransomed. Quest items, pledge rewards and purchased items from the Add-On, Stretch Goal and Make a Difference Stores cannot be ransomed.
Once a ransom is claimed the original owner of the items has several options in the Price of the Oracle UI. (Accessible from the list of options under the stained glass window icon in the upper right.) The original owner may pay off the ransom in gold to have the items immediately returned to their inventory. The owner may also forfeit the ransom to immediately send the items to the claimant.
If the owner does nothing the ransom will be sent to the claimant after a few hours. The remaining time to pay the ransom off in gold is displayed in the UI. Once a ransom has been paid, forfeited, or expired the claimant may claim their gold or items from the Oracle UI.
Avatars can also double-click their own Oracle Markers to regain their ransomed items at no cost, provided it has not been claimed in the time it took them to return to life and return to the spot where they were slain. Finally Oracle Markers vanish if they are not claimed in five minutes. If a marker times out and vanishes then the owner can recover their ransomed items for free from the Oracle UI.
This system is still being refined and is subject to change and fine tuning in coming releases.
The Pickpocketing skill (from the Subterfuge skill tree) allows Avatars to steal from one another without resorting to violence. Both the Pickpocketer and their potential victim must be flagged for PvP or in a scene that permits it. You may not attempt to pickpocket party members. A Pickpocket attempt requires being close to the victim and takes several seconds.
A successful Pickpocket attempt steals a random item or (stack of items) from the victim’s pack. Stolen items can be ransomed or surrendered by the victim, and claimed or returned by the thief, from the “Price of the Oracle” UI. Note that the Oracle UI does not identify successful Pickpockets. Worn/equipped items cannot be pick-pocketed.
Soft Locking your reticle to a Pickpocketer during an attempt (by placing the reticle over them and holding Shift + Left-click) interrupts the process and stuns them for a significant amount of time. Pickpocketing works with stealth skills and spells.
Avatars begin their journey through New Britannia relatively weak, but have the potential to grow mighty and skilled. Like most people Avatars learn by doing. Using your magical and martial abilities to battle monsters, harvest resources, craft items, and complete quests all help advance the related skills used.
For example, an archer who hunts with a bow will find their general Ranged Combat skill improving. If they use the Aimed Shot skill to bring down tougher prey, they will increase the Aimed Shot skill’s rank at the same time they continue to improve at general Ranged Combat. As the skill levels up, the archer will unlock additional copies of the Aimed Shot Glyph to use in their deck and do more damage with each aimed shot.
Active Skill Rank
# of Glyphs Available
As our archer skins beasts slain by their arrows, they will increase their Field Dressing Proficiency, as well as any other learned skills in the Field Dressing tree. If they choose to butcher the meat and tan the leather they harvest they will improve the appropriate refining skills.
As a skill increases in level, it will begin to take steadily more time and experience to increase. A skill’s progress towards the next rank is displayed as a small green bar beneath the icon in the Skill Tree.
Skill advancement requires the availability of Pooled Experience. A mage who spends all day throwing fireballs at training dummies will eventually find they have depleted their Pooled Adventurer Experience and be unable to further advance Adventurer skills. Your available pooled Experience for Adventuring and Production skills is displayed in the bottom-right of the appropriate skills tab.
Generally speaking, slaying monsters earns Adventuring Experience. Harvesting resources and crafting items earns Producer Experience. Completing quests for the people of New Britannia usually earns both Adventuring and Producer Experience.
Learning a new skill requires the services of a trainer. To learn a skill from a trainer you must pay a fee in gold, as well as meet any prerequisite skill levels. Trainers can be found in most major towns and cities, but not every trainer offers training in every skill.
Learning the most powerful skills will require seeking out master trainers found throughout the world. Each skill tree has their own master. Most skill masters will require you complete a quest or favor for them before they will teach you a skill tree’s most powerful skill.
There are limits to how fast a mind can assimilate new knowledge. Avatars attempting to train in a large number of skills at once will find advancement slow, especially in passive skills. Training in a skill can be toggled in the upper left of every skill icon in the skill tree. Focusing on only a few skills at once can help ensure regular progress.
[Includes New] All of your known skills (except Taming) are vulnerable to decay. Decay accumulates over time, triggering on death. Each death will apply half of your current "accumulated decay" amount. (For example, if you haven't played in a day or more then you will have accumulated 24 hours of decay and your first death will apply 12 hours of decay, leaving 12 hours of decay remaining. Your second death will apply 6 hours of decay and leave 6 hours remaining. Your third death will apply 3 hours of decay with 3 hours remaining, and so on.) The application of decay consumes pooled EXP for skills set to “Training” or “Maintain,” and lowers skills set to “Not Training.” Attempting to train and maintain a great many skills at once can make death very expensive for your pooled EXP. Skill decay accumulates whether you are logged in or not, but maxes out at 24 hours after your last death.
[New] Skills at level 100 or higher decay at twice the normal rate.
Skills have minimum requirements for the preceding skill(s). This also means that each skill has a minimum skill level below which it will not decay. This minimum skill level is based on the requirements of child skills in that skill tree. A skill cannot drop below the point where you would no longer qualify for any child skill. For example, the Bladed Combat skill will not decay below level 40, as child skills like Riposte require Bladed Combat be at least that level.
Until a skill reaches this minimum skill level, it may only be set to Training or Not Training.
Training: The skill will advance each time a relevant skill is used, consuming EXP from the appropriate pool. It will also consume pooled EXP on death to maintain it’s current level and negate decay.
Maintaining: The skill will not advance or consume EXP if used. It will only consume pooled EXP when the avatar dies, to maintain it’s current level and negate accumulated decay. Skills below the minimum level to learn their dependant skill do not decay on death, and cannot be set to Maintain.
Not Training: The skill will never consume EXP and will decay on death. (Above its minimum level)
[Includes New] Unlearning: The skill will never consume EXP and will decay on death. The skill will quickly lose experience as other skills gain experience. A portion of the experience deducted from the skill will be refunded back into the Experience pool. Skills below the minimum level to learn their dependant skill do not decay on death, and cannot be set to Unlearning. [New] All skills with levels greater than 80 will give back 100% experience when unlearning.
Another way to "unlearn" a skill is with a "Obsidian Item of Unlearning" book, purchasable from Obsidian Crown merchants. Such a book can reduce a skill down to the minimum level while recovering 90% of the experience points used to obtain its current level. Recovered experience points are returned to your experience pool and can then be used to increase other skill levels.
Passive skills (by definition) cannot be used or practiced. Most learned passive skills advance when other adventuring skills of the same tree are used. For example, fire magic passive skills will improve when active fire skills are used. All learned mining skills will see improvement when the Avatar mines ore nodes and crystals. The notable exceptions to this are passive skills from the Focus, Tactics and Subterfuge trees, which will improve whenever general Adventuring active skills are used, as these tree contain core attributes and eclectic active skills.
Press the K key to bring up the Skills menu. Skills are divided into Adventuring and Crafting tabs. The remaining pooled experience for that skill type is displayed in the bottom-right of the panel. Right now, some Crafting skills are less developed than Adventuring skills, but more are planned to be filled out in later releases.
Adventuring Skills are further divided into Combat, Magic, and Strategy Skills. Select the skill school icon to see the entire skill tree displayed. Each icon also displays the number of total levels you have in skills from that school.
Red skills are active offensive abilities used on enemies. Blue skills are short-term self buffs and are usually defensive in nature. Green skills heal or restore the target and can be used on yourself and allies. Yellow skills are crowd control and debuffs. Grey skills are innate upgrades that do not need to be used and are always in effect. Purple skills are miscellaneous abilities that don’t fit neatly into a specific category.
Skills that do not have an icon are not finished or useable.
Leveling up a skill makes it stronger and decreases Focus penalties for locking it as a Glyph. See “Locked Glyphs” below for more information.
Most skills require enough focus and the correct equipment to use. For example, “Crushing Blow” requires a bashing weapon. Your equipped chest armor determines what armor skills can be used. Cloth and Leather clothing is light armor. Chainmail and Plate is heavy armor.
Heavier armor can cause spells to fizzle. Combat skills never fizzle.
You can drag a skill into your hotbar from the Skills or Glyphs windows (accessible from the Window Selector), as well as from one hotbar slot to another. Glyphs are skills and objects that can be added to your hotbar. Specifically, any Glyph can be added to your Combat Hotbar but only utility, summoning, and healing skills (like Light and Healing Touch), as well as potions, can be added to your Utility Hotbar.
Each slot in a hotbar can only be occupied by one Glyph, but the Glyph in each slot is up to you. If the new Glyph came from the skills window, the original Glyph will be replaced. If the new Glyph came from another slot on the hotbar, the two Glyphs will swap places.
As an Avatar becomes more proficient with a school of magic they become increasingly Attuned to that element. Higher Attunement makes spells from that school more powerful and grants the Avatar some resistance to negative effects from that element. High attunement to an element has no penalties.
Attunement to an element is based on the average total levels of your Active skills in a particular magical school.
You may view your attunement in all magical skills on the Skill screen by clicking on the meditation icon, to the upper-left of the Magic skill section. Attunement is also displayed at the top of each magic skill tree.
Avatars have several ways to obtain NPC companions and creatures that will accompany them in their travels and may even aid them in battle. Regardless of how the creature was obtained, an Avatar can only have a single NPC companion in play at a time. Calling or summoning a new companion replaces the current one.
Skilled mages can summon Elementals, Undead, and other creatures to assist them in combat. A summoned creature may be re-summoned immediately if dismissed or slain, provided the summoner has enough Focus. Summoning spells can be added to a deck, locked into a slot, and used from the non-combat hotbar.
The effort of maintaining control over a summoned creature (or tamed beast) occupies a certain amount of the Avatar’s focus; the more powerful the creature, the more focus is required. This focus cannot be used to power other glyphs and will not recover through rest or potions until the creature is dismissed or slain. The exception to this rule are summoned undead, who suffer constant heath decay instead. Summoned creatures are fickle and will depart when you change scenes.
Avatars can also tame wild beasts to serve as pets and allies in battle. Taming a beast is a bit more complex than summoning a magical minion. First, basic training in the Tame Creature skill is required. The skill can be found at the top of the Taming tree in the Strategy skills menu.
Next, a prospective tamer must obtain the proper equipment: a Taming Collar (or several, to be safe) and a Summoning Whistle Necklace (which must be worn). These items can only be obtained through crafting and requires the services of a tailor, carpenter, and alchemist. Note that the “Animal Collar” and “Animal Whistle” items are components of the finished Taming items, not the finished items themselves. The Recipes for these items and their components can be obtained in the general store in Ardoris near Sequanna Square.
Once properly equipped and trained, the prospective tamer may locate a tameable beast and use the Tame Creature skill on them. Taming is not guaranteed to succeed and stronger or more willful beasts are more resistant to it. Stronger beasts are also more likely to consume a taming collar during an unsuccessful taming attempt. Each successful taming attempt always consumes a taming collar. Injured beasts are easier to tame, so it may be desirable to wear down an animal before attempting to tame it. If the process succeeds the beast will vanish and can be called to your side via the Summoning skill.
Note that a specific beast is tied to the exact Summoning Whistle Necklace you were wearing when you tamed it, and the name of the necklace will change to reflect the beast it calls. You must be wearing a necklace with an associated beast to to use the summoning skill. You can tame as many beasts as you have Summoning Whistle Necklaces, but remember you may only have a single beast called at a time.
Tamed beasts need time of their own to rest and hunt. After being called, there is a significant cooldown before a tamed beast can be called again, although increasing your Refresh skill will reduce this timeframe. Unlike summoned creatures, tamed beasts will follow you from scene to scene and across the overworld.
Tamed beasts will also not fight to the death, fleeing when badly injured. This is not without reason, as tamed beasts remain dead when slain and cannot be called again. If a tamed beast is slain this frees up it’s necklace to be used to tame another beast. Note that a slain tamed beast may be resurrected with an appropriate spell up to 5 minutes after their death, but afterwards they are beyond recovery. Slain beasts may not be resurrected, even by their master’s allies, while their master is slain.
Most natural beast are tameable, even some exotic ones like the giant Corpions of New Britannia. Many domesticated and “barnyard” animals can be tamed, although some creatures may not make effective combatants or have any fighting abilities at all. Horses can be tamed, but not used as mounts at this point in development. Skills that aid in the taming process and make tamed beasts stronger and more reliable can be found in the Taming tree, under the Strategy skill menu.
Tamed beasts can be assigned names through the right-click menu. These names will be remembered for the duration of their lives. Summoned elementals can be assigned names if you wish, but these chaotic and inconsistent creatures will have forgotten them by the next time they are summoned.
While playing in Offline mode it is possible to recruit certain NPCs to serve as Companions. Fiona the bard in Peladjar's Tavern in Ardoris is one such possible Companion. Some Companions are happy to accompany you if you ask, other may require you to complete a quest or offer some kind of payment first. Once recruited a Companion will offer you an item that can be used to call them to your side.
You may be accompanied by a Companion and a tamed or summoned creature at the same time. Companions are only available when playing in Offline mode.
Summons, pets, and companions will normally stay near you and assist in combat, but it is possible to give them more specific orders. Right-clicking on them will allow you to order them to stay put, adjust their aggression level, call them to your side, or dismiss them. These commands can also be issued by right-clicking on their nameplate, beneath your own on the left side of the screen. Right-clicking on an enemy allows you to direct your pet to attack that specific target.
Avatars (especially backers and patrons of the Add-On store) may also come into possession of a specific class of pet called Decoration Pets. When dragged to your non-combat hotbar and then used from there these call a pet or servant to your side. These pets will follow you about and can be given limited commands by right-clicking on them or their nameplate, much like other summoned creatures. Decoration pets have no combat abilities and cannot assist you in battle.
Decoration pets may also be placed on any lot you own, counting against the NPC limit for that lot. Right-clicking on the placed pet allows you to set its behavior or recover it to your inventory. Decoration pets may be summoned an unlimited number of times without a cooldown, even if the creature is slain or becomes lost. This does not have a focus or reagent cost.
Achieving a level of 100 or more in a skill makes an Avatar a Grandmaster in that skill. Anyone in a party with a Grandmaster will advance in the skill(s) the Grandmaster has mastered much more quickly. The Grandmaster’s party members must still have learned the mastered skill and have set that skill to “Training” in the skills tab to gain any benefit.
Grandmasters display small yellow shields with little green triangles on them next to their nameplates. Hovering over this icon will display what skills they have Grandmastered.
Innate skills set to train benefit from Grandmastery automatically, but Active skills also only benefit when used. Adventuring in a party with a Fireball Grandmaster will only help advance your Fireball skill more quickly if you actually cast the spell. Note that Grandmastery does not affect how quickly you earn experience, just how quickly experience from the appropriate pool is consumed to advance the Grandmastered skill.
Players that wish to reset their skill points can purchase an Obsidian Potion of Unlearning from Obsidian Crown merchants. This magical potion that can reduce a skill down to the minimum level and recover 90% of the experience points used to level it. These points are returned to your experience pool so they can be used to increase other skill levels.
When you create a new character, several default combat skills will be locked to your Combat Hotbar that are suitable for new players. However, as you grow more powerful and gain more skills, you will want to customize how you use your skills in battle. In Shroud of the Avatar, this is done through the Deck system.
Decks and Deck Building may seem intimidating for new players, but note that that you can jump into the game without learning what is described below yet. Discussion with other players on our forum might also be helpful; there you can find suggested deck builds, help on which skills work best with each other for a given combat style, and so on.
[Includes New] Deck Building is an optional advanced technique for combat that you can unlock during a conversation with most Adventurer Trainers, including master trainers. Once you have unlocked this feature and wish to build and equip a new deck, access the Decks window with the Y key.
Select “New Deck.” Drag or double-click on skills in your Glyph list on the left side of the deck builder UI to populate your deck list on the right.
A deck may not contain more Glyphs of a skill than you have ranks in that skill (maximum of 5). A newly-arrived Avatar has a minimum deck size of 10 cards, and this minimum size increases as the Avatar grows stronger and more experienced. Decks smaller than their minimum number of Glyphs will fill out the extra slots with blank “Slug” Glyphs. Slugs do not help you in combat, though they can be discarded (like all Glyphs). It is recommended that you fill out your deck.
The maximum deck size is unlimited. In general, you may find it useful to concentrate on specific skills and combinations to assure that they are available when you need them. New players and low level Avatars may find it easier to lock their Glyphs (discussed below) while they build up their skills and Glyph selection.
Glyphs can be reused between different decks. For example, you can put all five of your Fireball Glyphs in Deck A, and all five will still be available to add to Deck B. Innate skills cannot and do not need to be added to your deck. They always are in effect for your Avatar.
When your character exits the Isle of Storms, all Glyphs in the Combat Hotbar are "locked." This means when a Glyph is used, the slot will remain empty until its Glyph is available again, and no other Glyph can appear in that slot. This can change later, after you learn about "Deck Building." (See "Locked Glyphs" for more information.)
[Includes New] Eventually, you can talk to nearly any Adventure Trainer about "deck building" and unlock the ability to customize your deck and Combat Hotbar. Until you unlock this advanced technique, the interface to customize your deck will not be available. Once this feature is unlocked, you can choose to keep Glyphs locked or unlocked.
When a Combat Hotbar slot is unlocked, any Glyph can be dealt to that slot. Greater control over where a drawn Glyph is dealt can be achieved by dragging the icon for that Glyph down to a slot in the decks window.
Assigning a Glyph in this fashion means that, when that Glyph is drawn, it will always be dealt to that assigned slot first. (Provided the slot is open.) If the slot is currently holding a Glyph, then the assigned Glyph will simply be dealt to the next available slot, if there is one. Multiple skills can be assigned to a single slot and the same skill can be assigned to multiple slots. Note that no matter how many slots you assign a skill to, you cannot be dealt more copies of the Glyph for that skill than exist in your deck.
Assigning Glyphs to specific slots allows a high degree of control over the deck system and lets you focus more on the unfolding action than on your hand. For example, you could assign all your healing spells to one slot, ensuring that whenever you are dealt a healing Glyph you know where it will appear.
A slot can be cleared of assigned skills by right-clicking on it in the deck builder interface.
Assigning Glyphs is discrete from locking Glyphs to a slot, described below.
[Includes New] Most Trainers, including Crafting Trainers, Adventurer Trainers, and Master Trainers, can unlock the utility hotbar for you. This is a second hotbar that will appear below your combat bar. To unlock this additional hotbar, start by mentioning "utility hotbar" to any trainer and they’ll let you know if they can unlock this technique for you. The utility hotbar can hold “non-combat” skills and items, such as the Fishing skill and any food item.
Once you have access to both hotbars, the combat hotbar will always be present during combat while the utility hotbar will be present at all times by default. Entering combat mode (by pressing Z or using any combat skill) will make the combat hotbar appear while exiting combat mode will make it disappear.
Note that when you unlock deck building and the utility hotbar, you do so for your character and not for your account. If you create a new character, you will need to unlock these advanced techniques again for that character.
The Linked Equipment section lets you associate a set of armor and weaponry with a deck. Equipping that deck will also equip that set, provided the items are still in your inventory. Note that armor and clothing can only be changed during combat by linking them to an associated deck.
A deck must be equipped before it can be used in combat. Select your finished deck from the list, and use the Equip button. Decks may not be created or modified in combat, though you may still swap between already created decks. If you cannot modify a deck, make sure to sheath your weapon.
The deck interface allows you to set an alternate deck (including it’s own linked equipment) and swap between your equipped and alternate decks with the X key or the Swap Deck icon at the bottom-right of the screen. This can be useful for chaotic battles where you might need to switch from ranged to melee combat, or go from healing allies to defending yourself.
Swapping decks clears your hand. Swapping decks costs 10% of your max focus, but can be performed while moving. If you intend to swap between two different decks, remember to link your desired equipment set to each.
You may lock a Glyph by right-clicking on a Glyph already assigned to a particular slot in the Edit Deck window. Locking a Glyph to a slot clears any other Glyphs assigned to that slot. Locking a Glyph in this fashion also occupies a potential Glyph that could otherwise be put in that deck.
Unlike assigned Glyphs, Locked Glyphs are always available in their numbered slot on your hotbar. They are not drawn and dealt out at random and do not count towards the minimum cards in your deck. Unlike Glyphs dealt from a deck, locked Glyphs start on cooldown when you enter combat and have a cooldown before they can be used again.
[Includes New] Locked Glyphs also cost a base +100% more Focus to use, increased by casting successive casting and decreased based on your level. The more you cast the same Glyph successively, the more Focus will be required with each casting. A locked Glyph will require less Focus to cast the higher your level in that skill.
A locked Glyph will always be more expensive than a randomly dealt copy, but becoming proficient in the relevant skill can mitigate much of the cost of locking a Glyph.
A new Glyph can be dragged to an already locked slot on the combat hotbar without going into the deck-builder interface. Simply drag a Glyph from the Glyphs list (Y hotkey) to the desired locked slot. Glyphs in locked slots can also swap places simply by dragging one locked Glyph over the other. Only slots on the combat hotbar with an already locked Glyph can be swapped out this way.
In combat, Glyphs from your deck are randomly dealt to your hand where they can be used. If one or more Glyphs have been assigned to a specific spot in your hand remember they will be dealt there first. Using a Glyph removes it from your hand and places it back in your deck. Unused Glyphs are eventually replaced by fresh Glyphs.
You may discard a Glyph without using it by right-clicking on it.
Experiment to build a deck that matches your play style. Don’t be afraid to adjust your Glyph composition, what Glyphs are assigned to what slots, or your locked Glyphs. Remember you can have more than one deck.
More powerful spells (Third tier and above) require additional power to cast. This power comes from a class of consumable items called Reagents. A mage requires at least one of each necessary reagent in order to cast a spell. Each cast of the spell has a chance to consume one of the required Reagents, so carrying spares is recommended.
A spell’s Reagent requirements are listed when you hover over the spell in the Skills window, Glyphs window, or Hotbar. You can also see the remaining number of sets of reagents for that spell you have in stock by looking at the spell’s icon on your Hotbar.
Reagents can be bought from select merchants (like alchemists), looted from slain enemies, harvested in the wild, and grown via agriculture. Combat skills do not require Reagents.
Consumable items (like Health and Focus potions) appear in your Glyph list with your other Glyphs. Like other Glyphs consumables can be placed into your deck to be dealt at random, assigned to a slot, and locked to a slot.
The “Show Unavailable Consumables” checkbox allows you to view and equip the Glyphs for consumables you do not currently own. Note that you will still need to obtain the actual consumable in your inventory for it’s Glyph to be useable.
Consumables can be used any time out of combat by dragging them to your Non-Combat hotbar. Note that food does not create glyphs and can only be used from the non-combat hotbar.
The Combo Glyph system is highly experimental, and may undergo significant changes.The system allows two Glyphs to be combined into a potentially more powerful Glyph.
There are two types of Glyph combos. The first are unique combos, where two different Glyphs are combined into a new Glyph for a skill not otherwise available. These unique combination Glyphs often have the effects of both skills used to create them. They cannot be learned as normal skills, and can only be used by combining Glyphs. Check the Combo tab of the Glyphs panel for more details.
Second, two Glyphs of the same skill can be combined into into a more powerful and efficient Glyph of the same type. Benefits include decreased focus cost, additional damage, and more. As many copies of a Glyph as you have in your deck can be combined into a single Glyph, and the stacked Glyph becomes more powerful with every copy combined.
Glyphs can be combined by dragging and dropping compatible Glyphs onto one another with the Left Mouse Button, or by hitting the R key and hitting the hotkeys for the two Glyphs you wish to combine.
Locked Glyphs cannot be used for combos. Only Glyphs that have been dealt into your hand may be combined. Combo Glyphs may be discarded and will eventually expire like normal Glyphs.
Player housing is one of the most impressive ways to make your mark on the world. Players can stake their claim to lots that appear in world to everyone and build and decorate dwellings ranging from humble cottages to towering island castles.
To claim a lot, you need a Lot Deed in your inventory. Lot Deeds are generally for sale from or near the same merchants who sell House and Basement deeds. (Such as upstairs in the Owl’s Head bank building.) Certain pledge levels will also begin with appropriate Lot Deeds already in the Rewards section of the bank.
When in a scene with player lots, you can ask town criers or guards how many lots are available by asking them “how many houses are free?” Town Criers will display a list of all lots in a scene and allow you to set a compass waypoint to any specific lot. Town Criers may also bind you to a town on request, which sets that town as your Recall point for Recall scrolls. This can be handy if you do not own a lot to bind to.
Holding down the P key will send out a visual “flare” beacon from any available lots nearby.
To claim an available housing lot, walk up to the “For Sale” runic sign or marker stone and double left-click the sign. Click the “Claim Lot” button to bring up the Lot Deeds panel and chose which Deed to associate with this specific Lot. While Lot Deeds can be expensive, associating a Deed with an unclaimed Lot does not cost gold.
Deeds can be associated with any Lot their size or smaller. For example a Town Deed can be used to claim a Town or Village Lot but a Village Deed cannot claim a Town or Castle sized Lot. As of R15, only Citizen Founders (or higher) with Founder deeds can claim water lots.
Deeds may also be Tax Free, Player-Owned Town, or both. Both modifiers work as you would expect. You will not need to pay taxes on any lot claimed with a Tax Free deed. Player-Owned Town deeds only work on lots in a Player-Owned Town.
From smallest to largest, lot sizes are as follows:
Once a Lot Deed is associated with a lot, it will vanish from your inventory. If you unclaim the lot (or ownership expires) the Lot Deed is returned to your inventory and can be reused. Unless you sell or destroy the Lot Deed, you do not need to buy a new one. Lot Deeds are not consumed on use.
Right-clicking on a deed in the Lot Deeds list allows you to pay taxes or unclaim that lot.
You may use the cogwheel dropdown menu to Bind to any lot you own. Avatars may also bind to any lot where they have Guest access or better. Using a Recall scroll returns you to your bound location. You may only be bound to one location at a time. Binding to a new lot or town overrides the old bind point.
While you may own as many Lot Deeds as you can afford, accounts are currently limited to claiming a maximum of three Lots at one time. Note that lot ownership expires if you owe more than 14 days worth of taxes on a lot. You are responsible for taxes on all lots you own.
The exception to this is Player-Owned Towns. Player can claim unlimited numbers of lots within Player-Owned Towns. Lots claimed within a Player-Owned Town do not count towards the player’s maximum of three Lots elsewhere.
Upgrading your pledge or purchasing a bundle may entitle you to upgrade one or more of your Lot Deeds to a larger size. If you are entitled to an upgrade, first go to any bank and use the “Claim Rewards” button. Next, open your Lot Deeds panel (U hotkey). Any Lot deeds you own that are eligible for upgrades will be outlined in green, and can be upgraded by right-clicking on them and selecting the appropriate option from the drop-down menu.
Lot Deeds can be upgraded even if they are in use. Note that upgrading a Lot Deed in use does not affect the Lot it is being used to claim. The claimed Lot remains the same size.
House Deeds are not the same as Lot Deeds. You may own a Lot Deed and claim a Lot without having a House Deed. To place a house on a claimed lot, you must own a deed for that house. At present, House Deeds are available for sale from the vendors upstairs in the Owlshead bank building. Placing a house once you already have the deed costs nothing.
You may freely switch between different houses you have the deeds for, using the left and right arrows on the lot sign, provided the lot will allow that kind of house. For example, you cannot place a City sized house on a Row lot. Smaller houses may be placed on larger lots. Only water houses can be placed on a water lot. Changing houses moves all placed decorations to the nearest bank.
Like Lot Deeds, House Deeds are inventory items that can be sold and traded. When you place a house on a lot that House Deed is removed from your inventory. If you change houses or lose ownership of the lot that house deed will be restored to your inventory. There is no limit to the number or types of House Deeds you may own, but remember you may not claim more than three lots.
Players can buy "Lot Deed Raffle" tickets with in-game gold for a chance to win Lot Deeds. There are two Lot Deed Raffles every month, one for Place-Anywhere Deeds (PAD) and one for Player-Owned Town (POT) Deeds. Each raffle ticket grants the holder one chance to win a Lot Deed of any size (Row, Village, Town, or City) and there will be multiple winners for each lot size each month. PAD raffle tickets are higher cost and their lottery will have fewer deeds to win. POT raffle tickets are more affordable and many more deeds will be available to win in the POT raffle.
When you claim a lot you are responsible for paying taxes for that lot (unless you claim the lot with a deed with Tax Free status). You will be informed of the daily taxes for a lot during the process of claiming it. The exception is lots claimed via Tax Free Deeds, which obviously do not owe any taxes.
Taxes can be paid from the Lot Deeds panel (U hotkey). The Lot Deeds panel displays how much tax is past due for a specific lot, and how many days remain before ownership of that lot expires due to non-payment. You may pre-pay up to 90 days in advance worth of taxes on a Lot. Pre-paid taxes are refunded if you are evicted or unclaim the lot, and can be collected from the bank.
Taxes are owed based off of lot size, not the deed used to claim the lot. (Except for Tax Free Deeds) If you claim a Village Lot with a Castle Deed you will only pay Village Lot taxes for that specific lot. Choice of house or other decorations on a lot do not affect taxes.
Tax Debt is accumulated when you lose ownership of a lot while owing any taxes on it. This can occur if you unclaim a lot, if you are evicted, or if taxes on a lot become past due for too long. Owing any amount of Tax Debt prevents claiming additional lots until you pay off the debt. Tax Debt is account wide, and can be monitored and paid from the Lot Deeds panel.
Gold Crowns of the Obsidians can be used to pay or pre-pay lot deed taxes. Do this via the Deed List UI by spending gold crowns to add credit to your account. You can then use the credit to pay taxes for an individual lot. One Cold Crown covers an equivalent amount of gold in taxes (rates are still being adjusted). Note that if you pre-pay taxes with Gold Crowns and are then evicted, you will be refunded your tax credit in normal gold, not in Gold Crowns.
Once a housing lot is claimed, the owner may choose what house occupies the lot from among those in their inventory via the “Change House” button.
To adjust permissions for a lot, select the cogwheel dropdown menu and chose to “Manage Lot Access.”
There are a wide variety of decorations available to personalize your home. There are vendors that sell decorations throughout the world, often located in banks (such as the Owl’s Head bank).
House Decorations By Size: The chart below shows the decorations limits for house lots.
Basements function as expansions to a lot that exist independently of any house on that lot. You may have a basement without a house and vice versa. Like house deeds, basements are restricted by lot size. You may not place a Castle-sized basement beneath a Village-sized lot, for example.
To place a basement on a lot you need two things: A Basement Hatch Entrance and a Basement Deed. Both of these can be purchased from the deed and decoration vendors in the Owl’s Head market square.
Basement Hatch Entrances are placeable decorations that can be deployed on the ground anywhere there is room on your lot. This includes inside or outside your house, and because they are magic, even on the third floor! Hatches are extremely cheap, but will not function without a Basement Deed.
Basement Deeds function much like house deeds. To connect your hatch to a basement you must have the deed to that basement in your possession. The “Enter Basement” button allows you to actually change scenes into your selected basement.
Of course your Basement Hatch is more than just a convenient entry point. With a Basement Deed in your inventory your Basement Hatch functions much like the sign outside of a lot, allowing you to change your selected basement (if you have multiple deeds), and adjust the permissions of who can change your decorations. At present granting general lot permissions also grants basement permissions and vice-versa. In later releases you will be able to restrict basement access to specific individuals.
Basements can be freely decorated in the same way houses and outside lots can. The “Store Items” button clears all placed decorations from your basement, storing them in your bank until you claim them.
Basements can be set to allow for open-PvP, which is worth being aware of before following a stranger into their basement. All basements contain Resurrection Ankhs.
Basement Decorations By Size: The chart below shows the decorations limits for basements. Note that these limits are based on the basement size, not lot size. So, a row basement placed on a village lot still has row-based limits.
You can use the Property Manager window to store a fully-decorated lot or basement and unpack it to either that same lot or another empty lot of the same size that you have claimed in any scene.
You can access the Property Manager window from the Stained Glass menu icon, the Lot Deeds options menu, or from any lot sign in any scene. The left side of the window shows your available slots and their current storage status. Each player is given 5 storage slots. You may purchase additional storage slots with Gold Crowns of the Obsidians. The right side of the Property Manager window shows all of your claimed lots. Each lot includes the name of the deed used to claim the lot, the location of the lot, and the size of the lot. Each lot also has two slots: one for the primary contents of your lot (including the house), and one for the basement and its contents.
Hovering over a slot will display a tooltip that includes an item count. If the number of items placed on a lot changes, click the “Refresh” option in the top-right of the Property Manager window to ensure the item count is up-to-date.
Packing the Contents of a Lot or Basement into Storage: To store the contents of a lot or basement, drag a the contents from one of the slots into any “(Empty Storage)” slot in the left side of the Property Manager window.
The storage is immediate and includes all decorations within that slot.
If you drag a storage icon to an occupied slot, you will simultaneously move your new lot into storage and unpack everything from the slot to your lot. You can also swap live and stored basements in the same way.
Unpacking a Stored Lot or Basement: To unpack a stored lot or basement, drag the stored item from a storage slot in the left side of the Property Manager window into an empty slot in the right side of the window.
A stored lot can be unpacked only onto any lot of the same size as the original.
A stored basement can be unpacked only onto any lot, as long as the stored basement is not be larger than the lot that it is being unpacked onto.
A stored basement can only be unpacked on a lot that is in the same town in which the basement was originally stored. Also, the stored basement cannot be larger than the lot that it is being unpacked onto.
Unpacking a stored lot or basement on a lot in the same town in which it was originally stored is free. Unpacking a stored lot or basement into a town different than its original will cost Gold Crowns of the Obsidians to complete the move. (If a lot or basement move requires a special fee, you will be asked to pay that fee when you attempt to unpack your lot or basement or cancel the action.)
Once unpacked, the contents of the unpacked lot or basement will become immediately available. Also, any decorations that were packed up with that lot or basement when it was stored will reappear in their original locations at the time that they were stored.
Note that you can only unpack one lot or basement every five minutes. An unpacking cooldown timer will appear at the top of your Property Manager window when you unpack a stored lot or basement.
Renaming a Lot or Basement within the Property Manager: Each lot and basement listed in your Property Manager window will have a default name, but you can rename them at any time. To rename a lot or basement, right-click on it’s icon in the Property Manager window, fill in the new name, and click “Submit.” You can also use the “Set to Default” option to rename the lot or basement to its default name. You can also rename stored lots and basements.
Sending Stored Lots and Basements to Your Bank: You have the option to send all of the contents of a storage slot to your bank. To do so, right-click on a storage slot and select the “Send to Bank” option.
Unclaiming a Lot: Unclaiming a lot does not move a lot or basement into a Property Manager storage slot. Rather, unclaiming a lot moves all associated items into your bank.
Storage Slots are Tied to Your Account: It’s important to note that Property Manager storage slots are connected to your game account and not to a specific character. This means that, for example, if you store a lot, delete your character, and create a new character, that new character will have immediate access to the lot that was placed into storage.
Player Vendors are placed directly onto lots by Avatars who own a contract for their services. They are similar in function to Public Vendors. Notable exceptions are that only Avatars with Kindred or higher permissions for that lot may place items for sale at a Player Vendor. Items placed with a Player Vendor are also not auto-sold for half their value after a certain amount of time. The Player Vendor stocks the item indefinitely, until another Avatar buys it or it is manually removed.
Player Vendors obtained through Pledges and Bundles do not require a fee to list an item for sale. Player Vendors whose contracts were bought with in-game gold will charge a fee to put items up for sale, much like Public Vendors. Player Vendors may not hold more than 100 items for sale at one time. Any passing Avatar who can reach the Player Vendor may purchase the items listed for sale.
Avatars who have purchased one will ultimately find themselves owners and Governors of a Player-Owned Town.
Ownership of a town is displayed next to the town name for all to see. Town ownership comes with a number of additional privileges and responsibilities, most notably control over who can claim what lots within the town. General permissions for the town can be managed from any lot sign, though the “Manage Town Access” option in the Manage Lot Claim dropdown menu.
Residents can claim any lot not specifically set as restricted. Stewards can adjust restrictions on specific lots, evict Avatars from a lot, and grant Avatars resident privileges. Only the town owner can promote someone to Steward, and Stewards cannot affect the owner’s permissions or privileges.
Undesirable individuals can be prevented from entering the town entirely via the Banned tab. Banned Avatars are immediately kicked to the overworld and are unable to re-enter the town. Note that individuals cannot be banned from open-PvP Player-Owned Towns.
Some Player-Owned Towns do not begin with their lots placed. The town owner will find a selection of Property Markers in their bank. These Property Markers may be placed in any sufficiently flat spot in the owner's town, becoming property lots.
Only the town owner and their Stewards may place, move, or remove Property Markers. If a placed lot has already been claimed then the current lot owner must be evicted before the Property Marker can be reclaimed or repositioned. Player-Owned Towns also have a maximum amount of square feet that can be covered by lots, which is displayed on the decoration UI while placing a Properly Marker. Town owners receive the maximum number of Property Markers of each type that will fit in a Metropolis, even if they own a smaller town.
Town owners and Stewards can also set privileges on a lot-by-lot basis via the “Change Lot Reservation” option on the Manage Lot Claim dropdown menu. A lot can be locked so that only residents or a specific Avatar can claim it.
The current holder of the lot can be evicted from the Manage Lot Claim dropdown, returning any deeds to their inventory and any placed decorations to their bank. Inhabitants of a Player-Owned Town should remain aware that their continued lot ownership is dependent on the permissions of the owner and their Stewards.
Governors of Player-Owned Towns and their Stewards can also also place select types of decorations anywhere there is sufficient space, much like they can place lots via property markers. This includes a variety of NPC shops and buildings, and other cosmetic decorations like fences, trees, fountains, banners, and statues. Player-Owned Town governors will find markers for their NPC buildings in their bank
At present these buildings are purely decorative and nonfunctional. In later releases we expect to staff them with working NPCs. Other Player-Owned Town features include generally placeable NPCs and street lights.
Governors can also place special Broadcast versions of the Phonograph decoration in their town. These Broadcast versions can be loaded with wax cylinders and set to play music like a normal phonograph, but will override the default music for the scene and play the Governor’s selected music for the entire town. Broadcast Phonographs can hold more wax cylinders (songs) in larger Player-Owned Towns.
As with normal lots, there are limits to how many decorations of various types can be placed in a Player-Owned Town. The decoration UI appears when placing a Property Marker, NPC building, or other decoration in your town, filling in appropriate bars to showing you how close to your allotted limit you are. Larger Player-Owned Towns allow more NPC Buildings and other decorations.
Changing a POT’s Default Spawn Point: Every POT has a default spawn point, which is where players appear when they enter that POT. Owners and Stewards of dynamic Player-Owned Towns can set the spawn point for their POT to a different location.
To change your POT’s spawn location, you (or any player with proper permissions) should access any lot sign within your POT, open its Options menu, and select “Manage Town Spawn Area” to open the the “Town Spawn Selection” window.
In the Town Spawn Selection window, your POT’s current spawn point will be selected in the dropdown list and appear in the map as a blue gate icon. Each time you select a different spawn point in the dropdown list, the blue gate icon will appear at a new target location. You can change your POT’s default spawn location by selecting a new spawn target from the dropdown list and then clicking the “Save Selection” button. If you change your mind, you can return to this window, select a different target, and save your new choice.
In Shroud of the Avatar, the economy is in the hands of the players. Avatars who aspire to wealth and fortune will be able to gather raw materials in the world, refine and assemble them into all manner of useful items and equipment, and sell them to other players. The process of harvesting and creating these items is commonly referred to as “crafting.”
Much of crafting is left for you to discover through experimenting with how items work with each other. You can share your discoveries with other players, either in the game itself or online, on Shroud of the Avatar’s official message board or on sites run by Shroud of the Avatar fans such as sotawiki.net.
Resource nodes (like trees, herbs, ore, crystals, and more) throughout the world can be harvested with the appropriate tools. If you approach a resource node and mouse over it, the cursor will turn into an image of the specific harvesting tool you need. Double-clicking on the node will automatically attempt to harvest it, provided you have the necessary tool equipped.
Harvesting (and other crafting) tools must be equipped in profession-specific slots in the skills menu (K). If you wish to use a specific crafting or harvesting tool (perhaps because you have a tool that does not wear out or provides a higher chance of success), make sure your preferred tool in the “Equipped Tool” slot. Crafting tools may also be equipped from the inventory by right-clicking on them.
Using a harvesting tool slowly wears it down and depletes its durability. Harvesting tools will eventually need to be repaired or replaced. Harvesting tools can also be improved through use of Engraving Kits crafted by alchemists. Engraving a tool permanently reduces its maximum durability.
Most resource nodes are time consuming to harvest, though you can interrupt the process at any time. Harvesting time can also vary dramatically from node to nod. It’s recommended you clear nearby hostile creatures before attempting to harvest a node.
Not every harvest attempt will be successful, although you may attempt to harvest the same node again at no penalty. Your chance of success is dependant on a combination of your relevant harvesting skills, the quality of the harvesting tool, and the difficulty of the individual node. Successfully harvesting a resource node not only allows you to loot the contents, but awards a small amount of Crafting Experience. Skills that can improve the speed and success ratio of harvesting different resource types can be found in the Gathering section of the Crafting Skills menu.
Fishing works slightly differently from most gathering professions. In order to fish you need four things: a fishing pole equipped, training in the Fishing skill, a supply of bait (Fishing worms), and a body of water.
To fish, add the Fishing skill icon to your non-combat hotbar and click it. This changes your cursor to a targeting circle, much like with spells like fireball. Move the targeting circle over the water. A red targeting circle means fishing is not allowed on that spot. Whenever your targeting cursor is green, you can left-click on that spot to begin fishing. After you cast your line, wait for the progress bar to fill. Do not move while the progress bar is filling. Once the bar completes, you will reel in any caught fish or other items.
While you can fish and catch fish in any open water deep enough to swim within, skilled anglers can spot fishing nodes near docks and coasts. These appear as groups of ripples on the water’s surface. Fishing in these nodes can improve the quality of your catch.
Note that some nodes may be out of reach of novice anglers, and that your casting range steadily increases as your fishing skills improve. Repeated casts will deplete fishing nodes, although they will eventually restock themselves given time.
Time of day influences the chance to catch a fish. In the mornings the chance to catch fish is highest. The evening also gets a bonus to catch fish but not as great as the morning. Afternoon and night have the normal baseline fish chances.
Avatars who own a lot can use their property to grow crops, useful for cooking and more.
At present, agriculture requires a planting bed or barrel, a seed, a hoe, and a supply of water (carried in buckets). To get started growing crops, first place the planting bed or barrel on your lot. Larger planting beds contain space for multiple plants, so select the spot you want to use and double-click on it.
In the planter box UI, add the items listed below, then press the “Plant” button at the bottom of the window.
A sprout will appear in the appropriate space. Over an extended period of time this will grow into a mature plant, at which point double-clicking on it will allow you to harvest it.
Periodically adding water to a growing plant can improve your final yield. The appearance of the dirt within your planter will help you know if your plant is ready to be watered. When the planter’s dirt is lighter or “flat” in color and looks dry, the plant needs to be watered. When the dirt is dark and has a “glossy” wet appearance, then it does not need watering. Simply double-clicking on the growing plant will allow you to water it, or notify you that it has enough water.
Plants placed inside a Greenhouse mature significantly faster. Plants grow very slowly inside other building interiors and basements.
Planters can be moved, picked up, and even traded to other Avatars without damaging the plants growing inside. Plants will only actually grow while their planter is placed as a decoration. Note that anybody with Kindred or above permissions for your lot can grow, water, and harvest plants from your planters.
To craft an item, you will need to find a crafting station for the category of item that you are creating. Crafting stations can be purchased for placement in houses, and public crafting stations are available in major cities like Ardoris and Owl’s Head.The categories of crafting are as follows:
Crafting items will require resources you find in the world, from hills you can mine, trees you can chop, animals you skin for hides, etc. Most recipes also require an ingredient (such as a chunk of coal) that you must purchase from a merchant. Handac, the merchant in the Owl’s Head public crafting pavilion, is an example merchant that sells most crafting ingredients that cannot be harvested in the game world.
Crafting an item for the first time helps an Avatar advance their general crafting skills considerably. Creating the same item over and over teaches slightly less each time.
New crafting recipes can be discovered through experimentation or purchased from select merchants (such as those in a shop off the Owl’s Head Market Row, behind the Skills Trainer). Also, players can teach some recipes to other players. Purchasable recipe items are consumed on use as you paste the page into your crafting log. Using the recipe permanently teaches you how to make the relevant item.
You can see available recipes via your recipe log, available via pressing the B key. The recipe log tracks which crafting recipes you have learned. As you discover and learn new combinations of items to craft they will appear here. If you do not have enough raw materials to create an item in a recipe, the title and the missing ingredients will appear in grey in the recipe log.
If you are at a crafting station, you can double click a recipe entry to automatically load items into the station and create the item. This is by far the easiest and quickest way to craft an item. You can always create an item manually (and will need to do so the first time you discover how to craft an item) by dragging the ingredients from the player inventory to the crafting station, along with the crafting tool required, and then clicking the CRAFT button on the crafting station.
The CRAFT button will only light up when items that are used in a valid recipe have been loaded into the station. Click the CRAFT button to create that item and, if not already present, to save that item’s recipe into your recipe log.
When discovering new recipes, you have to use the exact amount of ingredients necessary to create the item. If moving items from a stack of your inventory into the crafting station, you can use the CTRL key to grab a single item from the stack. Just moving a stack of items from your inventory will bring up a dialog asking how many you want to move.
All items can be removed from a crafting table by left-clicking the “Take All” button. This is helpful when cleaning up items after you are done with a specific recipe.
All crafting requires that the appropriate kind of crafting tool be equipped. If you do not yet have a tool equipped in the appropriate slot in the skills menu, you can drag the tool to the Equipped Tool slot in the crafting table UI. Crafting tools can also be improved through use of Engraving Kits crafted by alchemists.
You may attempt to craft multiple copies of an item (provided you have the raw materials) by adjusting the number to the right of the Craft button. Note that crafting in a batch like this will never produce a Critical Success and an Exceptional item.
When you actually hit the Craft button there are several possible results, influenced by factors such as your crafting skills, the type of item you are trying to craft, and the quality of the crafting tools and station used. The station UI will display your chance of success for a recipe when you have the appropriate ingredients loaded into the crafting station.
In many recipes, parts made of different materials can be used interchangeably. For example, an Iron Hilt or a Bronze Hilt can both be used to make a Longsword, but the attributes of the finished weapon will change. Weapons and armor are heavily affected by the materials used to create them. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different types of materials to discover their useful properties.
Items can also have different cosmetic appearances depending on what materials were used to craft them. For example, plate armor made from Meteoric Iron sheets will have a different appearance from plate armor crafted from normal Iron.
Some armor can be further customized through the use of dye, which will be available via crafting and the Add-On Store. Dye is applied simply by dragging the dye onto the armor in your inventory or character sheet. You will be able to choose between applying the dye to the item’s primary or secondary color If an item cannot be dyed, you will receive a notification message and the Dye will not be used. Most crafted armor can be dyed. Dye remover will restore a clothing item to its original color and can be purchased from our Add-On Store.
Completed items have a “Maker’s Mark” that includes the name of the Avatar who crafted them.
Below are some example recipes to get you started.
Avatars can write in blank books in-game and share them with other Avatars in our first iteration of Player-Made Books. Writing in a Blank Book does not require any Crafting skills, although the actual Blank Book item can be crafted at a tailoring station as a Misc item.
To begin writing a book, double-click on the book. You may either write in the book directly or import text from a file. You must then “publish” the book (by clicking the “Publish” button) in order to save your work. After publishing a book, it can no longer be edited. Published books can be copied by feeding the published book and Blank Books into a Printing Press. Books are currently limited to 8000 characters.
Consuming prepared food provides long term buffs to health regeneration and more. Buffs from food persist on scene change. You may have two buffs from food active at the same time. Food can only be consumed outside of combat, from your non-combat hotbar.
Alchemy allows magical gems and jewels to be cut from a sufficient number of fragments, or from intact precious stones harvested via mining. These cut stones can then be socketed into crafted equipment (while at the alchemy table). A socketed stone adds attunement to that stone’s magical element while the equipment is worn or wielded. This stacks with attunement from improving active skills.
An item may only have a single type of precious stone socketed into it. Once socketed, precious stones may not be removed or replaced. Chest armor, shields, and weapons are socketed with Gems. Rings and amulets require the slightly smaller and cheaper-to-cut Jewels.
Socketing a Gem or Jewel adds related bonuses to the pool offered when Enchanting an item. For example, socketing a Ruby Jewel or Gem into an item means fire magic related bonuses may appear when Enchanting that item. Gems and Jewels do not affect Masterworking bonuses.
Crafted equipment can be further improved using appropriate Masterworking and Enchanting crafting recipies. An item can be Masterworked at the crafting table that created it. Items are Enchanted at the alchemy table.
Successfully Enchanting or Masterworking an item allows the choice of one of three randomly selected permanent bonuses, while lowering the maximum possible durability of the item. Even repairing an item with an Obsidian Crown cannot recover Max Durability lowered by Enchanting or Masterworking, with one exception: at Grandmaster level, there is a chance to sometimes add maximum durability back to the item. Once a specific bonus is chosen it will not be offered again on subsequent attempts to improve an item with that skill.
Socketing a Gem or Jewel into an item allows bonuses related to that Gem’s element to appear as Enchanting bonuses. For example, after socketing an item with a Ruby, bonuses related to fire magic spells can be offered when Enchanting the item. Masterworking bonuses are not affected by socketing a Gem or Jewel.
Masterworking specializations can unlock item type specific Masterworking bonuses. For example, learning and improving the “Masterwork Blade Weapon Proficiency” skill unlocks additional possible bonuses when Masterworking bladed weapons, as well as improving your chance to succeed in Masterworking attempts with blades. Rings and Necklaces cannot be Masterworked. (They can be Enchanted.)
An item can be Enchanted and Masterworked up to five (5) times each, provided the item has enough durability. Each subsequent attempt becomes significantly more difficult, and an item must have more than 30 maximum durability to be Enchanted or Masterworked. The same item can be both Enchanted and Masterworked. Masterworking an item does not make it harder to Enchant or count against the number of times an item can be Enchanted, and vice versa.
The higher your associated crafting skill level, the greater the power of the effect added to the item. Also the power of the effect is directly proportional to how many levels of Masterworking or Enchanting have been applied.
Any failed Masterworking or Enchantment attempt permanently destroys the item.
"Patterns" allow players to change the visual appearance of many items in the game while preserving the functionality and data associated with the item the pattern is being applied to. For example, applying a pattern to a weapon will allow it to keep all of its original stats (including damage range, durability, and enchantments) but will make it look different.
Patterns can be obtained through purchases (e.g. pledges, Add-On Store, and bundles) and in-game activities (e.g. salvaged from gear found on defeated enemies).
You will use patterns to reshape existing pieces of gear in much the same way you enchant gear at a crafting station. To apply a pattern, take a weapon or a piece of armor to the appropriate station (ex. a longbow to a carpentry station) and then use a pattern to reshape that item into something visually different.
Unwanted or broken equipment can be salvaged to recover raw materials. This requires the appropriate crafting table, tool, and training in the appropriate skill.
Item Type to be Salvaged
Metal Weapons and Armor
Blacksmithing Salvage Proficiency
Cloth and Leather Armor
Tailoring Salvage Proficiency
Wooden Items (Such as Bows)
Carpentry Salvage Proficiency
Tailoring Salvage Proficiency
Salvage attempts usually generate scraps. Items with metal in them give metal scraps, wood gives wood scraps, etc. Many items will yield more than one type of scrap, depending on what was used in their construction. Scraps can be combined in varying quantities with non-salvaged raw materials to create a full unit of a given material (like an ingot). Salvaging crafted items may yield components used in their creation, like hilts and blades, if Salvage skills is high enough.
You can use the conversation window to interact with both players and NPCs.
To converse with NPCs or other players, press the ENTER key to bring up your chat log. Type the text you want conveyed to the npc/players within the chat box, and press ENTER again to send the text, which also exits text entry mode (an industry standard we have adopted). NPCs can also be conversed with by double-clicking on them.
NPCs with something important to say may try to get your attention or even approach you and begin a conversation without any prompting.
When the Avatar begins a conversation with the NPC, the camera will fix on them in cinematic fashion and you will not be able to move. When you are done speaking with that NPC, close the chat window or hit ESC to restore normal movement and control. NPCs will also end conversations on their own, if you remain silent too long.
The conversation window has a tabbed interface, similar to a manila file folder. You begin with two tabs, but can create more. Each tab has a drop-down menu that allows you to filter what that tab receives, change the tab’s name, change the font size, or remove the tab entirely. The chat log can be scrolled through by left-click + dragging the slider on the right side of the chat window. You can disable the requirement to hit Enter before each text entry in the Options menu.
There are several additional icons to the far-right of the chat window. The plus symbol opens new tabs. The triangle allows you to change the select tab, which can be useful if you have more tabs open than can be displayed at once. The gear opens a dropdown with additional miscellaneous chat options. The thumbtack locks and unlock the auto-hide feature, “pinning” the chat window on the screen. By default, the chat window auto-hides itself when not being used.
To move the chat window, left-click + drag while the cursor is within the text receiving area. To re-size it, left-click + drag the window borders as desired.
To send chat directly to a specific NPC, select them with your left mouse button before sending a message. Double-clicking on friendly and neutral NPCs alsos opens conversation with them, assuming you do not have a weapon in hand.
You can talk to NPCs as you would any other player; note that as of this writing humans still tend to be a bit more intelligent than computers, so some suspension of disbelief will be required. By default, keywords that the NPC understands will be underlined, and you can click on those keywords to ask more about that given subject. (This may be disabled, along with keyword highlighting to enhance immersion if desired.) Note that you will still need ask the NPC about some things explicitly via typing, such as answering questions and asking about things not explicitly mentioned in dialogue.
[Includes New] A keyword toolbar can be toggled open at the bottom of the chat window when conversing with an NPC. This toolbar will include every keyword you have uncovered for that NPC, including keywords relating to quests you are currently on and keywords learned from past conversations with that NPC.
All conversational NPCs respond to (at least) the following phrases you may remember from earlier RPGs.
NPCs open a chat tab specific to their conversation when you first address them. You can click on the chat tab created to automatically target that NPC to talk to them. Private messages from other players and messages from game administrators will appear in these tabs as well to ensure you do not miss them.
Some NPCs may ask you to perform tasks for them or reward you for your accomplishments. If an NPC wants you to give them an item or letter (perhaps as part of a quest), they will open a special trade interface listing the specific item(s) they are looking for, allowing you to pick the item from your inventory and hand it over.
Characters who have quests for you, or who have current active tasks, have a blue glow and appear as a Point of Interest on your compass. The character's glow and compass marker will turn off once you complete all quests assigned to it.
Quests that generate tasks display those tasks on screen.
These tasks mirror the tasks listed in the “Current Tasks” section of the Journal. Clicking on a task on this heads-up display (HUD) task list will open the Journal to the page on which the task exists.
You can right-click that task in the HUD, or in the Journal, to open a context menu that includes an option to hide the task on the HUD. In the Journal, you can also right-click a task that has been hidden to open a context menu that includes an option to show the task.
The HUD task list displays, at most, 5 different tasks. Whenever you have more than 5 tasks, a button will appear under the HUD task list that indicates the number of tasks that are not shown. Clicking this button will open the "Current Tasks" section of the Journal.
Tasks in your list will mark their completion as you accomplish them.
A list of chat / commands (also known as “slash commands”) and their functionality follows. To use a chat command, type in the command followed by any input required (denoted in the below list by a pair of <>) and the ENTER key to execute it. Note that some of these commands are for testing purposes and may be removed in the future.
For example, type the following into your chat window to send Lord British a friendly greeting as a private message.
Many NPCs buy and sell things. You can activate the Shopping interface in a number of ways.
Double-clicking an NPC will call up the Shopping interface window, if one exists. NPCs may also open up a Shopping interface window as part of a conversation. “What do you sell,” “Show me your store,” “What is for sale,” “What goods do you offer,” or the keywords “vendor” and “buy” will all work.
You can buy and sell goods from an NPC using a tabbed interface and set quantities for purchasing/selling multiple items. You will be asked to confirm a transaction before it is completed.
New Britannian merchants are canny and will generally pay you only half an item’s listed value. When selling the same item themselves they will charge twice the listed value. Be aware that the selling price for equipment also declines as it loses durability. In later releases merchants may pay you more for items related to their specific trade.
An Avatar starts with no gold but a small selection of harvesting tools and adventuring gear. Hunting monsters for loot and harvesting resources to craft items are both excellent ways to make money.
Public Vendors offer an alternate way to buy and sell goods with other players than meeting them face to face. Their stock comes entirely from other Avatars. Public Vendors are found in most major towns, such as outside the Kingsport bank and near the Owlshead crafting pavilion. They will not stock more than ten items from a specific Avatar or four hundred items in total. They will also not take more than ten purchase orders from a specific Avatar or four hundred orders in total.
You put items up for sale by going to the “Manage Inventory” tab and dragging the item you wish to sell over to the right side, to the “Your Items Listed For Sale” panel.
When you offer to sell an item to a Public Vendor you are not simply handing the item over for gold like with a normal vendor. You must pay a fee to the Public Vendor, who will then display your item for sale to other Avatars at the price you set. This fee is 10% of the price you are selling the item for, plus ten gold. The deposit fee will not be refunded regardless of if the item sells, expires, or is reclaimed by you.
Once you have paid the fee your item will be available for purchase to anyone browsing that Public Vendor. When another Avatar buys your item the gold will be sent to the nearest bank, where you may claim to add it to your total. At present a Public Vendor will stock an item for a full week before the item expires. Items made available for purchase show up in the “Buy” tab.
If an item expires without being purchased the Public Vendor will remove the item and credit you half the item’s value, collectable from the nearest bank. That is half the value listed on the item, not half the price you were selling the item for. Note that the item itself will not be returned and should be considered gone.
You may cancel a sale at any point before it expires by double-clicking or right-clicking on your item in the “Your Items Listed For Sale” panel, at which point the item will be returned to your inventory.
You may also place an order for a specific item or stack of items with the public vendor through the “Manage Orders” tab. Double-click or drag the picture of item you wish to place an order for over to the “Your Purchase Orders” panel on the right. Enter the quantity of the item you wish to order and how much you are prepared to pay for them.
You will need to deposit the price you are prepared to pay for your order with the Public Vendor, along with a small non-refundable fee (10 gold + 10% of the price). If you cancel your order or it expires, your deposit will be send to the nearest bank for you to collect.
Placed orders may be fulfilled through the Public Vendor’s “Sell” tab. To fulfill a placed order you must have the items the other Avatar wants to buy in your inventory. Double-click on the order or drag it over to the “Proposed Exchange” panel and click ”Sign For Exchange.”
The items will be immediately removed from your inventory and the gold will be directly added to your total. The Avatar who placed the order will be notified and able to claim the items from the nearest bank.
Mailboxes allow you to receive mail notifications based on public vendor and player vendor transactions. (They do not allow you to send mail.) When one of your vendor listings is sold, expired, or removed, you will receive mail that notifies you of the event and includes any proceeds or refund from that transaction.
When vendor items are sold, expired, or removed, you will receive a Letter Icon notification on the right edge of your screen. The icon indicates the number of unopened pieces of mail present in your mailbox.
You can access your mail at any mailbox. Every bank throughout New Britannia has a mailbox, typically just inside the front door. Also, mailboxes can be crafted and placed on housing lots.
Accessing a mailbox will open your Mail window. The left portion of this window will lists all of your available mail. If you select a mail listing, its contents will appear on the right side of the window. Vendor gold transactions (via purchase, expiration, or refund) will appear here, as will text receipts regarding unexpired items that are forcibly removed from Player Vendors (see below) and moved to your bank.
Unexpired items on a Player Vendor can be forcibly removed for the following reasons:
Musically-inclined Avatars can play instruments and songs for the enjoyment of friends, tavern patrons, or random passers-by. At present, your character can only play music while having a hand-held instrument equipped (such as a lute) or by interacting with an instrument placed in the world (such as the piano in the Owl’s Head tavern). Music can be played while sitting or moving.
To play an equippable instrument, you must equip it, use the “/play” command to ready it, and use number keys 1–8 to play musical notes. Non-equipped instruments like pianos do not need to be readied with /play.
Play a particular song by acquiring and double-clicking on the song’s sheet music while you have a musical instrument equipped.
Blank Sheet Music allows you to create custom songs with any .abc or .mml files stored in your Sheet Music folder. The default Windows filepath to this folder is shown below.
Place custom musical files into the same Sheet Music folder mentioned above, equip a musical instrument, and type “/play <songname>” into your chat window (replacing <songname> with the name of your custom music file) to play custom music in the game. All custom music files must be in the .mml or .abc file format.
By default, the game begins with a copy of RuleBritannia.abc already in this folder.
“Band files” can be used to collect solo parts for multiple instruments into one shared list. Not all instruments are required and the order doesn’t matter. Band files must be placed in the same folder mentioned above and be in the .txt file format.
As an example, you might have a band file named MyOpus.txt and these music files: accordianpart.abc, bagpipespart.abc, drumpart.abc, flutepart.abc, harppart.abc, lutepart.abc, pianopart.abc, and streetorganpart.abc. Your MyOpus.txt band file needs to only include the text below in order for you to play your associated music files.
To play music from a band file, equip a musical instrument listed in the band file and type “/play <bandfilename>” (replacing <bandfilename> with the name of your band file). If you attempt to play an instrument listed in the band file, you will play that one part. If you have a One-Man Band equipped, you will play all appropriate parts which are included in the band file. If you attempt to play an instrument not listed in the band file, no music will play (although you may still animate playing your equipped instrument).
Use the chat window commands below to play instruments.
Chat Window Command
Ready equipped instrument.
Plays notes. #1 is 1 Middle C pitch.
Prints a list of all the songs in your songs folder.
Plays the song, by file name, from your songs folder.
/play <songname> loop
Loops the song after finishing it.
/play <songname> sync
Prepares a song to play while in a party.
Starts all party members playing their synced song.
Opens the data folder for music and book writing.
Singing without an instrument is not yet properly implemented.
Players can group together in Guilds and Parties.
Guilds allow like minded players to organize and keep track of one another in a more permanent way than parties and a more structured way than the Friends list.
Seek out a guild registrar in any large city (such as Marcus the Guild Registrar within the barracks in Owl’s Head) to begin creating a Guild. Bring plenty of funds, as creating a guild costs 25,000 gold. The Avatar who creates a guild is leader by default.
Creating or joining a Guild will add a Guild tab to your Social menu. From here you can view Guild membership and toggle displaying your guild name on your nameplate on or off. Guild leaders and officers may manage membership and rank privileges. Any guild member may leave the guild from this tab.
You may also leave your Guild at any time with the “/leaveguild” command.
There may only be one guild leader at a time. The guild leader may invite new members, promote them to officer rank, demote officers to member rank, and kick any individual from the guild. Officers may invite and kick normal members. Officers may not affect the rank or membership of other officers or the guild leader.
If the leader quits the guild without promoting a new leader first then the most senior officer will automatically be promoted to leader. If the guild has no officers then the most senior member will be promoted to leader. Be aware that if the last guild member leaves a guild it will be dissolved, and an additional 25,000 gold fee must be paid to create a new one.
Guildmates share access to an exclusive chat channel, available with the “/g” command.
Shroud of the Avatar can be played as a single-player adventure, but most find it fun and rewarding to meet challenges with like-minded friends. These are called parties (sometimes referred to as groups for those familiar with the concept in other online games).
Players can be invited to party with you if you are the leader of a party or if you are not currently in a party. When invited to a party, a dialog will pop up that the player may accept or decline.
Parties are limited to eight members.
Earned Adventurer Experience is divided between party member based on their Adventurer Level. Higher level party members are awarded proportionally more Experience. Slain monsters award 10% more Exp for each member in a party. Grandmastery training benefits only extent to players in the same party.
Looted gold is split evenly between all party members. Other items go to whichever party member picks them up and will be noted in the chat log. You may wish to discuss loot distribution with your party members before heading off to adventure together.
All party members are shown in the list with their status is listed. Status includes Leader, invited, and member of party.
While in a party you will be able to see your party members nameplates so long as they are in the same scene as you, and you have nameplates toggled on.
If the party leader disconnects or leaves the party, leader status will be assigned to a new party member.
Party leaders can do the following.
Offline party members will remain in the party, but their name will be greyed out.
HUD elements (displayed vertically in the top left corner) for the party include name, health, and focus of current party members.
Most areas (called maps or scenes) are shared by everyone in them. This includes most city, town, road, and wilderness scenes. It is possible to encounter Avatars not in your party in these scenes.
Other scenes are specific only to your Avatar and members of your party. You can identify these scenes because a popup that reads “Solo/Party Only” will appear when you hover your mouse over the entrance door or teleporter. Examples are the Kingsport Sewers and the Ravensmoor Dungeon at the south end of the Hidden Vale. Most of these scenes are accessed from inside other scenes rather than directly from the overworld.
Monsters in solo/party scenes generally do not respawn until you leave and the scene is reset. If you are inside a solo/party scene, you will only see players that are in your party. Other players will be placed in different instances of that scene.
When you create a party and you are already in a party scene, scene ownership converts from private to group so others can join. If others in the party are also in their own private instance of a scene, they are invited to “reload” so that they can join the party.
When you leave a party (or get kicked), you leave the instance as well, if the instance is a party scene.
If on the overworld map, you will see the location of party members on that map. If party members are pulled into a random encounter, you can join and assist them by double-clicking on their shield icon.
Guilds who seek to compete in martial prowess or who find themselves unable to resolve disputes peacefully can declare war on one another. To declare war on another guild you must be leader of your guild. Right-click on the Avatar or nameplate of the leader of the guild you wish to declare war on and select the “Challenge to a Guild War”option from the dropdown menu.
A Guild War Challenge menu will appear, allowing you to set the duration of the war, from one to ten days (earth time). After you hit the Challenge button the other guild leader will receive a notification and the option to accept or decline.
Once two guilds enter a state of war, all members of both guilds will be set to open-PvP for the duration of the war. This means that not only can the guilds at war freely attack one another in any scene, but other open-PvP Avatars can attack and be attacked by the warring guilds as well. When the war concludes, all guild members will return to their previous open-PvP status. At present, winning a war awards a trophy to the guild leader of the winning guild, suitable for display and bragging rights. This trophy appears in the victorious leaders bank around 15 minutes after the war ends.
Guild members can check the ongoing status of any wars with the Wars tab, opened by the semicolon key (;) by default. Right-clicking on a specific war allows members to bring up the running scoreboard for the conflict.
If either guild leader wishes to forfeit the war before it’s duration concludes, they may do so by right-clicking on the war in the Wars tab and choosing to do so from the dropdown menu. Leaders may also forfeit by right-clicking on the opposing guild leader and choosing the forfeit option from the dropdown menu.
As Shroud of the Avatar is in active development, we need your help to find any errant bugs you encounter so that we can quickly take care of them.
To report a bug, either left-click the sealed letter in the master menu or open up your chat log (ENTER key) and type in /bug followed by your bug report and the ENTER key. This will copy your bug report and game information to the clipboard and bring up the SotA bug forum where you can paste the clipboard into a post for us to receive. Before posting in the forums please follow these guidelines:
To find out the current position of the Avatar in game open up the chat log (ENTER key) and type in “/loc” followed by the ENTER key. This also copies out the location to your clipboard so that it can be pasted elsewhere as needed. Note that this is included in the information pre-loaded into the /bug command.
The F11 key will take a screenshot of the game and save it to your installed SotA directory; you may find it helpful to include a screenshot with your bug report.
There is no need to submit crash logs. Whenever there is a client crash, the data we require is automatically logged for us.
From all the developers of Shroud of the Avatar, thank you for helping us make this game the best that it can possibly be!