Ashes HQ

Development Update: June 30, 2023

Discussion & Outline Summary   

Community & Reminders

  • They are spotlighting 1 YouTube comment per development update.
    • This question led Steven to explain that certain types of fish (like trophy fish) could be put into a fish tank or pond in order to display it instead of making them into components. This will be explored post A2.
    • Steven will be on the Ashen Forge on July 9th 12PM PST
  • The Dev Discussion for the Roleplaying is still up.
  • There are still regular office hours that you can provide input on discord with the team.
  • Cosmetics swapping over on July 12th, 2023, at 11AM PST.

Freehold Update

  • The team decided to take a different approach with this presentation. The first half focused on detailing the mechanics of the freehold system, the second part is giving updates on designs and changes. Followed by some farming on a freehold, with auxiliary changes to the inventory, storage, mounts, and mining.
  • Designers Bucky (yard and ship design), Mike (economy and itemization) and Cory (artisanship and economy) were present in the video.
  • Freeholds have 3 main purposes:
    • Allow players to express themselves with unique combination of housing buildings and furniture.
    • The highest level of processing is only accessible on a freehold.
    • Freehold owners can build business building to offer services.
  • The designers spoke about their experience with other games and explained how ambitious the housing system in Ashes is comparatively.
  • Players will have lots of freedom in what they outfit there freehold with. In Ashes you can chose which buildings, how many building, there location, their size (farm area).
  • Owning a freehold is a multistep process.
    • Players must complete a quest to unlock the ability to bid on any available freehold permits at a node.
    • There will be predetermined parcel of a land in each node’s ZOI.
    • Players can use a permit to lay claim to any available parcel in the issuing node’s region.
    • Players can place their freehold inside the area of the claimed parcel.
  • The general location of a freehold are now predetermined and called parcels, and you will be able to bid on them, this is a change in the design previously discussed.
  • Once on your parcel, you will be able to use an item to do into top down view to figure out the exact location you want to put your freehold.
  • This is meant to give players the ability to represent their character and identity.
  • Materials can be deposited in “the shed” in order to gather required material to build the house.
  • The house:
    • The first building a player must construct on their freehold is a house.
    • The house size (small, medium or large) controls the amount of furniture a player can place on their freehold.
      • Some furniture may be restricted to either indoor or outdoor.
    • Furniture may have cosmetic or function benefits. (Functional benefits include buffs via consumables)
    • The building blueprint item will dictate the base appearance of the building. They can be purchased at specific vendors, or dropped via bosses. They can be traded or sold.
    • Building cosmetics are split into 3 main categories.
      • Housing
      • Artisanship
      • Business
  • Players will have the option to override the cosmetics appearance of certain building types within those 3 categories.
  • Business:
    • Business buildings provide services to players.
    • The freehold owner will be able to control permissions that gran access to the business building’s services.
    • Owning a freehold with someone else may help you provide other services to the public.
  • There was a tavern building tree update scheme that was displayed, explaining the benefits of building up the building to be better at some things (such as rested experience via upgraded feather beds)
  • Freeholds are a privilege nota rite.
  • Freeholds is just a single type of housing.
  • There are Inns that can be used when you do not have freeholds at a given location.
  • If a tavern is constructed and upgraded in one branch of the design tree, you could restructure the tavern to change its branch of the design tree to better serve the public as you see fit.
  • Artisanship
    • Each crafting and processing profession has an Associated artisanship building that players must construct and update to give them access to place that profession’s stations.
    • Artisan buildings can give benefit to all related stations on the freehold.
    • Freeholds are the only place that Master and Grandmaster Processing is available.
    • Players can craft up to Journeyman Level on freeholds.
  • Processing
    • Each processing profession has 4 professing stations that unlock as players progress.
    • In addition to raw resources required in a recipe, processing stations require a certain amount of fuel to fulfill the recipes fuel cost.
    • Any item may have a fuel value and players can mix and match different fuels together to fulfill the value of a recipe.
      • The Lumbermill Example:
        • The lumbermill will be able to be spec’ed into your specific wants, such as Arcana Golem upgrades to reduce resources, fuel and gold costs of processing job by 20%.
  • The recourse of Halceanite was displayed. It’s a mid-tier resource.
  • Drake of the Canopy, and lightfoot mounts was displayed.
  • The freehold shown in game was focusing on farming, and thus did not have a lot of buildings.
  • Farming pairs well with animal husbandry with the ability to focus on things such as yield (from butchering)
  • Resources are separated from your general inventory; they will have different shapes in order to do inventory management on a pick and choose level.
  • The functionality of the inventory bags/system was displayed.
  • Certain crops require seeds which will need to be cared for before they can be harvested.
  • You will be able to choose which byproduct to take from livestock. Such as milk vs meat from a cow.
  • A metal working station was show briefly (in a future stream crafting gameplay layers will be shown in detail).
  • The functionality of the house was shown, the chest expands the capacity capability of your freehold, the bed will be able to give you rest experience.
  • Steven clarified that each ZOI has designated large areas called parcels, that can be catered to county like areas. The freehold plot is now 1.5 acres (used to be 0.5 acres) and can be placed in any area of the parcel.
  • The bidding aspect of the freeholds is available after a lordship quest, there will be a regular cadence where parcels permits can be purchased. The idea is that nodes are built up and fall, which would free up freehold locations for purchase.
  • Freeholds are restricted to 1 per account.
  • An article will be published to further explain cosmetics.

Freehold Update Questions

  • Can you harvest off of someone else’s freehold?
    • People cannot harvest without your permission.
  • Can players be denied from buying property?
    • No
  • Will rare blueprints have benefits other than just appearance.
    • Absolutely, buildings can have certain buffs or benefits.
  • Does freehold size depend on how many things can be put inside?
    • Cosmetics that are large in size may be able to take up larger amounts of space within the freehold.
  • Are there plans to replace rest XP as servers mature?
    • Not at the moment.
  • Are the upgrades/skill trees for buildings able to be reset?
    • Yes, you can change the tree spec. The upgrade paths are specific to the buildings.
  • Will there be furniture loot in drop table?
    • There will be components of unique furniture recipes that are rare, that will scale based on the power it confers to the furniture.
  • Can married couples co-own a freehold?
    • No, freehold ownership is designated by 1 account only, the family system allows permissions of that freehold.

Art Update

  • Cow Milking Bucket/Stool
  • Wool Shears
  • Chicken
  • Crabfish model
  • Felgaz stalker (April 2022 – May 2022)
  • Desolation Outlander (April 2022 – May 2022)
  • Second Sword outfit worn by a Vek
  • Sons of Fortune
  • Tormentor’s Visage (June 2018 – July 2018)
  • Midnight’s mask (December 2021 – January 2022)
  • New Female and Male Niküa full body model

Studio Update

  • Bill Trost hired as Lead Game Designer.

Question & Answer

  • Will it be possible to choose the direction your freehold plot will be placed, and buildings within your freehold, or is this determined before hand?
    • Yes, you can manipulate the orientation of the freehold plot, and buildings, and items.
  • Will you be able to keep your mounts on your freehold plot to move freely about?
    • There are a number of types of ways that creatures can be acquired, some of them in a mount format, and can be used in a livestock placement on the freehold, from a cosmetic perspective there is not a system in place as of yet.
  • How many times a year do you suspect that most players will be moving residences, based on player-cities being eliminated from Sieges?
    • It is very important to remember that Ashes is a PvX game and it means as these systems are designs and integrated, they are done so in a competitive viewpoint, freeholds are one of those systems very much so. Although it is something that is cyclical, there are too many variables to give an average.
  • Is there going to be an upkeep to freeholds and nodes, and if not provided will degrade the freehold such as materials provided to keep things running?
    • Through the artisanship and processing mechanism, fuel is a required element, however if we are talking about a material maintenance for the actual freehold itself, no. However, there is a tax system which requires taxes to be paid. This tax is depending on the number and types of permits.
  • Will there be quicker gather function in your freehold?
    • Yes, there will be different types of tools and machinery to plant multiple seed types in your freehold, that is part of your progression. The same is true about quantity quality and speed of processing.
  • Will guild halls able to build high end crafting stations or otherwise different mechanics from freeholds?
    • There is still active discussion on guild halls, so Steven does not want to say anything about this question.
  • Are you safe while on your freehold or only while in your freehold?
    • The only safe space for the freehold is the home, within the home’s footprint.
  • Could you give us an idea on how durable a freehold is in case your node is successfully sieged?
    • This is a balance question that will be tested. It could scale depending on the participants of the siege, but right now there is not a direct answer.
  • Will world bosses take part in the NPC sieges on nodes, and will you be able to use a monster coin to play as those bosses?
    • That is the intent, there are very rare and legendary monster coins that could be used on Tumok. The monster coin is used exclusively for assaulting nodes not defending.
  • From an audio creation standpoint how to you plan to make audio an immersive experience?
    • Audio is as important as visuals, and sometimes it’s more. The tactile responses you want to hear out of mining and battle infiltrates so many layers in the game. There is a great audio team on the engineering and design side. There is a large focus on audio fidelity.  Intrepid’s perspective wants to create an environment that will illicit emotion out of the players and want those things to be defined to the area you are in.

Outline Contributor: Skylarck The Botanist

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