Week 29 is over. This week was dedicated primarily to caravans and biomes, so let’s see what’s new in these departments.
Caravans and Artifacts
In the image above you can see the updated Artifacts form, now with transport options and artifacts cap. Cap is simple: 4 + title. It applies onto all artifacts you have and are forging and you won’t be able to start forging if your treasury is full. Also, this is a soft cap – stealing artifacts through attain or simply dropping ranks can push you over the cap with no ill effects, except for the block on acquisition of new artifacts through spells and trade.
Transporting artifacts is simple – you point your caravan at a friendly throne and once it reaches it, assuming sufficient space in treasury, the artifact is transferred to target elder. When transporting artifacts to avatars the process is just as trivial – once the avatar and the caravan share same hex – you can transport the artifact to the avatar an the caravan will simply vanish.
Raiding enemy caravans is a no-brainer as well – get sufficient troops (1k soldiers for a 100k artifact – remember to guard them well!) and hit the caravan. Once the caravan swaps allegiance you can either transport the artifact back home (default) or put it onto your avatar on the same hex as described in the previous paragraph.
Combine artifact transporting with waypoints to avoid those nasty obstacles called Thrones and Monolith Garrisons. Otherwise…
We haven’t forgotten about the nuclear option: BURN CARGO. If you cannot save your artifact, sometimes it’s best to just watch it burn. This is really not recommended for valuable artifacts – as long as they exist there is a chance of winning them back.
The biome generator is complete, but without graphics to accompany its results there is not much to show yet. Biome generation turned to be much easier than I feared – we now generate two separate height maps – one to define the topology (sea, flats, mountains) and the other to define moisture. Taking those two together once can very easily determine what biome should be in what location. Extremely high mountain, lost of moisture? Snow. Elevation only a few points above water? Beach. Lowlands with low moisture? Deserts. There are about 15 active biomes and when a hex is clicked it will now show what biome is underneath.
Biomes will carry modifiers to OFF, DEF, PER and TER. How much and which – this comes in later, first order of business is to create some mockup graphics to we can actually see what’s going on. It’s quite possible we’ll need additional map options or other means to accurately display both elevation and biomes at once.
This is the heart of the issue – elevation defines extra ranges and movement bonuses/penalties but biomes modify those and need to be factored in all the steps of every calculation. Lots of work remains.
A few other and minor issues were fixed – for example the spell abort button now displays a 5 second confirmation window:
In essence, you now need to click twice to abort a spell. If you accidentally misclick and hit ABORT, just wait 5 seconds and the CONFIRM will revert back to abort.
That’s all for this update. This week will be dedicated to biomes, implementing them in the client and bringing their effects into movement and battles.