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Following a month or so in early access, Echtra Games’ hack ‘n’ slash action-RPG Torchlight III gets a new status update that outlines the team’s current endgame plans, talks about an upcoming update to the game’s Relic system, and lists a number of known issues. Here’s more on the big items:
Week 4 of Early Access already!
It seems like there are a million things happening all at once. We’ve delivered the third frontier, the Echonok Mountains, we’re currently revealing our end-game system, Fazeer’s Dun’djnn Challenge, and have a major Relic re-work on the way. Your input is working - we’re responding every way we can to the amazing feedback you’ve given us. It’s not just in these big ticket items, it’s all the way down to minor bugs and tweaks. Last update had 18 internal pages of patch notes, and a lot of it was in direct response to your input. We are not done, so please keep it coming! Aside from these new features, we’re always looking at bugs, balance changes, and quality of life additions. We are aware that there are still some problems with rubber-banding, with portalling issues, and with occasional disconnects. Those are ongoing issues, and while we have fixes being delivered, fixes in QA, and fixes still planned, we know they are issues that are bothering you, so rest assured we are going as fast as we can to keep you playing at full speed. Speaking of full-speed, we are also pleased to tell you that we’ll be implementing a Test Realm, where our new content and features can be tested and proved before they are ready for our live Early Access build. This should actually speed us up, letting us work faster on new content, while also preserving the experience and integrity of the live branch. We have promised you an active and responsive Early Access, and we hope to keep delivering on that promise. You are helping us make Torchlight 3 a worthy successor to our franchise, and our development team appreciates every single one of you!
Fazeer’s Dun’djinn Challenge
One of the first questions that players ask about Torchlight 3 has always been: “what kind of endgame does it have?” It is an important question that we have dodged for long enough. Taking cues from the previous two Torchlight games, our initial ideas for endgame revolved around ideas about mapworks runs, endless dungeons, new game plus, things like that. At the same time, feedback from our closed beta players was very clearly “it had better not be just mapworks.” The things that we heard from the players was that they wanted an activity they could play forever, improve at, keep finding more cool loot, face exciting new challenges, and importantly, show off their accomplishments to others.
To meet these goals, we have created Fazeer’s Dun’djinn. For those unfamiliar, Fazeer Shah is an all-powerful djinni from Torchlight 2 that helped you save the Guardian of Mana, in exchange for retrieving the Lamp of Marvels. Doing so unwittingly freed Fazeer, empowering him with near-limitless power. Now, over a century later, Fazeer tires of touring the world, and wants to settle down somewhere: your fort.
Fazeer conjures a series of dungeons for you that escalate in difficulty, enchanted with dozens of new arduous and bewildering affixes. Fazeer is a sporting sort and will deal you a hand of challenge choices in the form of cards. From these, you can pick the monsters, elements, detrimental and beneficial affixes you will surmount. At regular intervals you must also complete a challenging boss battle to save your progress. That’s right, if you die in this dungeon, your progress will be reset back to the last checkpoint.
As players progress through each set of cards, Challenge Dungeons will become increasingly more difficult.
Successfully completing milestone Boss battles will allow you to progress to a new tier of Challenge Dungeon cards.
What about fabulous gear and rewards, you ask? The quests, champions and bosses you clear within Fazeer’s Dun’djinn will reward you with fame, which you can use to earn all of the unlimited rewards in our contracts. Fazeer’s Dun’djinn also supports party play, so feel free to grab your friends (since you can’t resurrect yourself when playing solo!) and tackle Fazeer’s challenges as a team.
Invite a group to help you traverse through Fazeer’s Dun’djinn and reap the rewards of extra teamwork.
How far can you go? How about on Painful? Ridiculous? As you delve into Fazeer’s Dun’djinn, other players will be able to see the highest level that you have cleared, at your lowest difficulty played. Just how many levels are there? Who will be the first to reach the end? Is there even an end? Surely Fazeer can just conjure more…
After a closed community focus group, many chats with our fans in Discord and other channels, and reviewing some of the initial impressions we received surrounding skills during the Early Access launch weekend, we are going to make a big update to our skills - with a big focus on the Relic system. This will come in a future patch.
While we aren’t posting all the details yet (as some of them are still being developed, reviewed, and tested), we did want to provide some insight and a general overview of what we would like to accomplish with the Relic system as we move towards a launch product.
The Relic system has always been designed to be a powerful and unique part of your class build. Currently, when new players login for the first time, not only is there a strong barrier to entry to unlock this third skill tree, but it’s also not very clear that Relics are supposed to be an incredibly important part of your class build. There are also several parts of the current Relic system that cause confusion, can create a broken feel (like deleting a character with your Relic on it), and just don’t feel powerful and unique enough.
We also want Relics to have a more important role in the strategy of a character.
When Early Access began, Relics were all pretty similar, with no real attributes to truly distinguish them from each other. By the time we release this update, each Relic will lean heavily into its own strategy: summoning, healing, crowd control, random damage or consistent damage. There will be purpose and meaning to your choice. It will better define your personal playstyle and class build, and cement Relics as a core component of a character. This update to Relics will include new active skills, a revamp to current skills, and a general reinvention of each Relic to ensure each is useful, unique, and powerful.
With this in mind, we are looking to create an experience with Relics that starts with character creation. You will choose the Relic when you first create your character that will ultimately define your build as you play through the game. Ember Cores will no longer be something players loot and use to craft Relics and they will be removed from the game entirely in this update. Additionally, because of the dramatic change we plan to wipe all data on the Live servers when this update goes out in about two or three weeks. We know wipes aren’t something players generally look forward to and we don’t make this decision lightly.
When we have more specific info for this update, as well as a full account/player data wipe, we will post those details so that you are warned in advance and can be better prepared. In the meantime, we are opening up a Public Test Realm (see details below) so that players can enjoy testing out new features in development, have an alternative place to play if their account breaks during Early Access, and enjoy a more lax/loose place to test things with ‘cheat’ NPCs, more available resources, and random Yapper town battles when our community manager wants to cause trouble. We hope this will help bridge the gap for players when the Live multiplayer server is down, wiped, or otherwise unavailable.