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1
Events / Develop with Ross - Episode 11
« on: March 19, 2019, 06:42:22 PM »
Develop with Ross - Episode 11: 8 Awesome Cards to Make

I've got another developer stream planned for tomorrow Wednesday March 20th (9AM-11:30AM MT) on our Twitch channel Our community Discord helped me decided the following agenda of cards for tomorrow. Maybe I went ahead and threw in a few I wanted as well ;)

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In addition, I'll also be implementing the following balance changes:
  • Increase cost of Swarm from 3 -> 4
  • Decrease cost of Your Soul is Mine from 4 -> 3

2
Events / Develop with Ross - Episode 8 New Summoners
« on: February 26, 2019, 05:50:43 PM »
Develop with Ross - Episode 8: New Summoners

Hope you guys are as excited as I am for my development stream on Wednesday February 27th (9AM-11:30AM MT) on our Twitch channel. In this episode, I'll be implementing new Summoners and attempting to deliver them to you during the stream in what I hope will become our first successful OTA update.

Summoners are the hardest characters to design because they are your main character, and their core abilities (including what spell colors they can use) will be the foundation for your creative deck building. Possible powers have been simmering in my mind for some time and I've presented my most recent ideas here. My hope is to get your feedback during the stream, tune them appropriate and maybe get some inspiration for some of the characters still lacking designs.

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3
Game Updates & News / Release Notes v0.30.1
« on: February 26, 2019, 12:44:44 PM »
Release Notes
Latest Release: v0.31.4
Date Released: 3/20/2019


Hello players,

Thanks so much for continuing to provide valuable feedback in our Discord, Forums and in-game bug reporting tool. I've done my best to address the majority of your feedback in this release so that you can enjoy a stable and balanced build while I push forward to develop our ever-changing single player adventure for future release. Below are detailed release notes on all of the changes made in this build as well as past build releases.

Changes in v0.31.4
Released: March 20, 2019
New Cards Available
  • Dragon Hatcher
  • Dragon Whelp
  • Shadow
  • Preserver
  • Death Blossoms
  • Prison of Brambles
Game Changes
  • Increased cost of Swarm from 3 -> 4
  • Decreased cost of Your Soul is Mine from 4 -> 3
  • Increased Life of Scorpion from 4 -> 6
  • Changed Spore pod from Damage 1, Poison 1 to Poison (2). This means spore pods will no longer cascade explode each other.
  • Buffed Maltross (he needed it)

Changes in v0.31.3
Released: March 13, 2019
New Cards Available
  • Dark Elf Sorcerer
  • Your Soul is Mine
  • Antarus, Battle Mage
  • Celestial Barrier
Game Changes
  • Changed Cleansing Fire and Rust spells so that they can target any unit (instead of visible) so that they can be used to reveal Stealth.
  • Make it so card ALWAYS reveal on end turn. This fixed bug where players could reveal Wizard cards on opponent turn, breaking multiplayer matches.
  • Make it so that Necromancer cannot attack placables to summon skeletons.
  • Balanced starting spawn location on multiplayer maps to mitigate unfair first turn advantages such as dropping a taunt unit in the pocket of opponents entire team.
  • Added additional power to Rugged Mage allowing him to deal damage equal to his power when using his Farshot ability.
  • When Transfer consciousness is used on Red Imp, the player loses summoner. We need to make it so that isHero status transfers with red imp swap. Also fixed weird animation with Red Imp swap ability.

Changes in v0.31.2
Released: March 6, 2019
New Cards Available
  • Priestess
  • Reinmund, Wizard
Balance Changes
  • Added Vigil ability to Kailyn
  • Switft Strike now only triggers when adjacent unit attacks (so that it's not wasted when units out of range attack).
  • Changing the starting spawn locations of several maps to provide a minimum safe distance from first turn grappling.
  • Offsides spell now requires line of sight.
  • Psychic Blast can now target enemy summoners for damage.
  • Reduced the range of Grapple spell to 3 to.

Changes in v0.31.1
Released: February 27, 2019
New Cards Available
  • Clik'Clik, Impaler
  • Sibylla, Conjurer
  • Rugged Mage
  • D'Orc Slayer, Orc Chief
  • Serpenta Deceiver
  • Kailyn, Valkyrie Mage

Also added back the "Combo!" SFX/VFX that was missing with v0.30.1 update. See below for major change list.

Changes in v0.30.1
Released: February 26, 2019

New Cards Available
  • Marauder Metalist
  • Chimera
  • Demolish
  • Skeleton Hound
  • Swift Strike
  • Vigilant
  • Weaken
  • Lightning Elemental
  • Poison Blade
  • Orc Battlehorn
  • Plague
  • Orc Huntress
  • Revealing Light
AI Fixes
  • Fixed bug where AI turn would freeze and generate the timeout error when it tried to move and cast a spell next to a taunt unit. (#502)
  • Fixed bug where AI would generate a timeout error on the first tutorial mission on older iOS devices. This was due to card rasterization consuming all the resources in backworker. I added timed breaks between card rasterization so that the AI can take priority of the backworker resources. (#520)
  • Fixed bug where selecting a unit card while AI is processing their turn and defeats the player would result in the game becoming locked in the paused state. (#523)
Balance Changes
  • After triggering a combo attack, units may not move/attack/use support ability for remainder of turn. This change was made to reduce chances of a first-turn victory where opponent is unable to react.
  • Backstab abilities will no longer trigger from combo attacks, you must explicitly order the unit to backstab.
  • Freeze now removes Stealth.
  • Mana Burn - Increased the damage dealt to caster from 6 -> 8. This spell is incredibly powerful for the advantage it offers, so I think it warrants a greater risk being used.
  • Changed how Arch-Mage's draw card ability works to address player concern regarding the "scry" ability that can be exploited using the undo feature. Now, when he draws cards, they are drawn face down. While cards are face down, Arch Mage can undo his previous action like normal. But, once you click on the card to reveal it, the "cannot undo" (replay only) action is activated and you can no longer undo past that point. Cards will also reveal automatically when the turn ends and the discount wears off.
  • Taunt units no longer pin enemies if they cannot attack or cannot be attacked. This means you can now freeze a taunt unit to escape its pin. Players will see the taunt VFX remove when Taunt is inactive for that unit under these conditions.
  • Increased the damage of Blizzard and Ice Shards form 2 -> 3.
  • Changed Disintegrate from Deal 10 Fire damage to -> Deal 10 Fire damage with Pierce to target enemy and prevent Downfall.
  • Spike blocks now trigger Collide when pushed to surrounding space rather than just adjacent (so spear knockbacks from an angle impact can trigger damage).
  • Changed Animal Overrun from +2/+2 and Lunge until start of next turn to “end of turn”. The spell is intended as offensive, not defensive, and with the prior version change to eliminated buffs not reducing life, this spell was gaining too much defensive capability.
  • Changed Animal Growth from mutating only rodents to "Give ally animal +3/+3. If its small, mutate it." The following animals are now considered small: Squirrel, Killer Bunny, Snake, Fennec Fox and Red Starling. Yes, this means you can now create snake mutants (among others).
  • Changed Breed! from creating copies of only rodents to "Copy all small animals." to provide even more creative possibilities for synergies with animals.
Gameplay Fixes
  • Fixed bug where casting Dark Temptation on an already armored unit would result in their armor being removed and the new armor not showing visually on character.
  • Added support for OTA DLC content updates. This will allow Ross to distribute new cards during his weekly Twitch development stream.
  • Rust will no longer target characters with surprises nor remove surprises
  • Fixed bug where Cleanse could not be cast even when status effects are on the board. Also, Cleanse will no longer reveal locations of status effects being removed. Previously, the targeting of Cleanse would reveal locations of all targets with status effects which would allow player to determine location of hidden surprises.
  • Fixed bug where equipping a unit with an identical instance of a weapon (ex: a second Orc Warhammer) would result in its effects being stacked rather than replaced.
  • Fixed bug where Cleric could remove the armor granted by Dark Temptation.
  • Fixed bug where a unit would be assigned incorrect team, making it so you could target your own ally for attacks if they had Dark Temptation on them removed before it's control effect took place.
  • Fixed bug where Fennic fox could attack a diagonal enemy after swapping with an ally.
  • Fixed Gravity Well so it doesn’t pull units standing on the target space. This fixes bug where collide effects (such as standing adjacent to a spiked wall) could trigger on a unit standing on the gravity well target space.
  • Fixed bug where shadows were not appearing on quadrupeds, bugs, and snakes in the camp and on animated cards in the deck builder and collection.
  • Changed description of keyword "Block" to "Stop next physical attack from front or sides." to help clarify that side attacks are also blocked.
  • Warcry ability was changed to read: Triggers effect when entering battle.
  • Rally (X) keyword added as: Triggers effect when (X) enters battle.
  • Fixed bug where on screen items might not scale to fit a single atlas and result in unnecessary draw calls and performance drops.
  • Cleansing Fire can no longer detect surprises on units (it will be target units that only have surprise status effects). However, it will remove surprise status effects on units it is cast on.
  • Fixed bug where stacking a Life debug on a unit would result in the unit taking damage and (on armored units) this would cause the damage to be taken to armor instead of life, resulting in a life remaining that overflows the life bar available.
  • Fixed bug on Android when phone screen goes off due to inactivity and then is turned back on again, the game's sound levels restore to default despite the sliders being in the same position player put them in. (#529)
  • Fixed bug where an extra impact SFX played after a shield carrying unit blocked a combo attack.
  • Fixed bug where shield unit would play its impact animation before an arrow fired at it actually hit.
  • Fixed bug where sticky stats do not show on units that are newly summoned. (#537)
  • Animation System Upgrade: Made a special adaptation to the animation system to create more seamless animations when possible for multiple combined effects. For example, when multiple units collide into spikes or multiple units are poisoned, the animations will now occur together (if possible) rather than waiting for each animation to finish separately. Animations will group together when they come from an identical action as part of an uninterrupted sequence. If another action triggers (for example, as result of taking poison damage), the animation group will break apart at that point and show the animations to resolve that event tree before resuming the poison animations for the other units within that group. Note that the animation group will also break apart if the same action type targets an individual unit in more than one separate action so that each of the effects (ex: taking damage) are clearly shown as separate steps.
  • Fixed bug where you could not knockback or pull units through gateways.
  • Fixed bug where terrain obstacles were not getting colored or scaled properly when viewing their card.

4
Game Updates & News / Prerelease Available Wednesday, February 6th!
« on: February 01, 2019, 04:56:13 PM »
Summoners Fate Prerelease Available on February 6th, 2019


With great passion and excitement:

The Summoners Fate prerelease will be available for purchase on our game’s website on Wednesday, February 6th.

The price will be $29.99 and includes access to the game on all supported platforms (Windows, Mac, iOS and Android). Currently supported features include deck building with over 170 implemented cards and real-time turn-based combat versus player and AI. Our ever-changing single player adventures are still being developed and will be added in a future update. Prerelease players will receive access to all game content as its being developed as well as entitlements to the full release content when the game launches officially.

I’m sure you have many questions, so I’ve put together this handy FAQ about the prerelease. Please let me know if you have other questions I can answer. I look forward to seeing you on the battlefield with me next week!

~Ross

Summoners Fate Prerelease FAQ

What is the Summoners Fate Prerelease?

Our prerelease is an opportunity to purchase and play the game before its official release and play a critical role shaping its development through direct interactions with the developer, me, Ross!

Why should I buy the game now versus waiting for full release?

One of the most unique aspects of Summoners Fate is my pillar of “community driven design”. What this means is that player feedback is at the heart of how I work and why I develop this game. Players of my first game, Hero Mages, took part in the early design phase, making key contributions to the playability and creative aspects of the game, including the game’s distinctive squirrel-themed cards. Since then, Kelly and I have involved you throughout our development journey on social media, Kickstarter, our forums and our Discord. And recently, I’ve been streaming the development weekly on Twitch where I’ve created player-inspired cards live while you work with me.

Buying the game in prerelease means you have a chance to shape its development and be an integral part of helping to create an exceptional community and game experience. Prerelease sales also helps me continue funding development and deliver the high-caliber quality you’ve come to expect from the games I create for you.

Why the $29.99 price point?

I speak sincerely and from the heart when I say you’ll be getting an exceptional experience easily worth multiple times more than our price point. Player satisfaction is my top commitment as a developer. I looked closely at our competitors and was dismayed to learn an average F2P CCG player might spend $400/year on cards, many of which aren’t even the ones they want. I don’t do that. Summoners Fate will include the entire launch cardset with the game and each of our cards has value and is super fun to play. If you’ve participated in our Discord or Twitch, you already know this. I don’t design “filler” content. We don’t have rares and commons to manipulate your spending habits. You’ll never dust cards because you bought something you didn’t want. Summoners Fate is a game developed from the heart and this shines through when you’re playing it. It’s not just a game you’re getting, either. You get to be part of a fantastic, welcoming community of like-minded players. You get to participate in live discussions with me on Discord and my weekly Twitch stream. You have a voice that is heard and recognized. You get to be a part of building something great and share in the joy of all those who hear and validate your ideas and see them come to life in my work.

Is the prerelease available on Steam, Discord or other third-party stores?

We have plans to distribute via third party stores (Steam, Discord, etc.) in the springtime when we have completed the single player features and the game is ready for mass audience. The prerelease offered on our website is not Steam “Early Access” nor does the purchase of the prerelease come with any third-party distributor entitlements (ex: access to game via Steam). Upon purchase, you’ll be able download the build on your desired operating platforms (Windows and/or Mac) and use the one-time-use registration key to activate the full release game entitlements on all platforms. When the game launches on mobile, it will be a free-download and offer DLC purchases to unlock the premium content that’s already included with your prerelease purchase. You’ll be able to access this content when you login with your account from any platform. Like the desktop version, the mobile builds are still in development and currently require access to our testing programs (Test Flight and Google Play Closed Alpha Testing) to access. Invitations to participate in these programs are available now to all prerelease players.

How many cards are included in the prerelease?

Currently, there are over 170+ of the 400+ cards planned for launch implemented within the game. During the prerelease, all cards are unlocked for testing purposes. When the single player is ready, I will reset the card access to follow the intended gameplay flow of completing the adventures to unlock the cards for your deck. When this happens, Kickstarter backers who purchased card bundles will receive access to the cards and exclusives included in their reward tiers.

I supported the Kickstarter when Summoners Fate was presented as F2P, how does this change affect my rewards?

I put a lot of thought and consideration into my decision to change from a F2P to a premium business model. As I’ve communicated before, I couldn’t reconcile the design values of the game (outlined above) with a business model that’s dependent on an extrinsic-reward-motivated core loop. I believe this change creates both a better game and a far better value for our players. I will do my best to ensure everyone who supported us is satisfied with the project and their rewards. Anyone that backed us at the Orc Battle Barrel tier or higher is entitled to a prerelease key, so please reach out to me if you haven’t yet received one. I look forward to seeing you on the battlefield!

I missed the Summoners Fate Kickstarter and want to support development, is there anyway I can still contribute and get access to the exclusive rewards?

Several members of our community have expressed regret that they missed the chance to participate in our Kickstarter and would love to support development and gain access to some of the very exclusive rewards (such as having a character designed in their likeness). I’m honored by this request, and to give you this opportunity, I will be setting up a development contribution on our website. This will include pledge rewards mirroring the tiers we used for Kickstarter. Excluded from this is the Golden Dragon, which was specifically defined as a Kickstarter-only exclusive. These options will be available on February 6th when the prerelease is available.

5
Game Updates & News / Upcoming Changes in Next Build
« on: January 23, 2019, 06:14:25 PM »
Hello players,

In interest of keeping each other best informed of the issues discovered in the current build and the ones that will be fixed in the next build, I'm going to start maintaining a list here. This list is not definitive, but growing. I'm simply logging changes as I have them ready to introduce to the new build so that you can get a sense of where I'm at and with what is known to be coming.

Changes Coming in v0.30.1

New Cards Available
  • Marauder Metalist
  • Chimera
  • Demolish
  • Skeleton Hound
  • Swift Strike
  • Vigilant
  • Weaken
  • Lightning Elemental
  • Poison Blade
  • Orc Battlehorn
  • Plague
  • Orc Huntress
  • Revealing Light
AI Fixes
  • Fixed bug where AI turn would freeze and generate the timeout error when it tried to move and cast a spell next to a taunt unit. (#502)
  • Fixed bug where AI would generate a timeout error on the first tutorial mission on older iOS devices. This was due to card rasterization consuming all the resources in backworker. I added timed breaks between card rasterization so that the AI can take priority of the backworker resources. (#520)
  • Fixed bug where selecting a unit card while AI is processing their turn and defeats the player would result in the game becoming locked in the paused state. (#523)
Balance Changes
  • After triggering a combo attack, units may not move/attack/use support ability for remainder of turn. This change was made to reduce chances of a first-turn victory where opponent is unable to react.
  • Backstab abilities will no longer trigger from combo attacks, you must explicitly order the unit to backstab.
  • Freeze now removes Stealth.
  • Mana Burn - Increased the damage dealt to caster from 6 -> 8. This spell is incredibly powerful for the advantage it offers, so I think it warrants a greater risk being used.
  • Changed how Arch-Mage's draw card ability works to address player concern regarding the "scry" ability that can be exploited using the undo feature. Now, when he draws cards, they are drawn face down. While cards are face down, Arch Mage can undo his previous action like normal. But, once you click on the card to reveal it, the "cannot undo" (replay only) action is activated and you can no longer undo past that point. Cards will also reveal automatically when the turn ends and the discount wears off.
  • Taunt units no longer pin enemies if they cannot attack or cannot be attacked. This means you can now freeze a taunt unit to escape its pin. Players will see the taunt VFX remove when Taunt is inactive for that unit under these conditions.
  • Increased the damage of Blizzard and Ice Shards form 2 -> 3.
  • Changed Disintegrate from Deal 10 Fire damage to -> Deal 10 Fire damage with Pierce to target enemy and prevent Downfall.
  • Spike blocks now trigger Collide when pushed to surrounding space rather than just adjacent (so spear knockbacks from an angle impact can trigger damage).
  • Changed Animal Overrun from +2/+2 and Lunge until start of next turn to “end of turn”. The spell is intended as offensive, not defensive, and with the prior version change to eliminated buffs not reducing life, this spell was gaining too much defensive capability.
  • Changed Animal Growth from mutating only rodents to "Give ally animal +3/+3. If its small, mutate it." The following animals are now considered small: Squirrel, Killer Bunny, Snake, Fennec Fox and Red Starling. Yes, this means you can now create snake mutants (among others).
  • Changed Breed! from creating copies of only rodents to "Copy all small animals." to provide even more creative possibilities for synergies with animals.
Gameplay Fixes
  • Fixed bug where casting Dark Temptation on an already armored unit would result in their armor being removed and the new armor not showing visually on character.
  • Added support for OTA DLC content updates. This will allow Ross to distribute new cards during his weekly Twitch development stream.
  • Rust will no longer target characters with surprises nor remove surprises
  • Fixed bug where Cleanse could not be cast even when status effects are on the board. Also, Cleanse will no longer reveal locations of status effects being removed. Previously, the targeting of Cleanse would reveal locations of all targets with status effects which would allow player to determine location of hidden surprises.
  • Fixed bug where equipping a unit with an identical instance of a weapon (ex: a second Orc Warhammer) would result in its effects being stacked rather than replaced.
  • Fixed bug where Cleric could remove the armor granted by Dark Temptation.
  • Fixed bug where a unit would be assigned incorrect team, making it so you could target your own ally for attacks if they had Dark Temptation on them removed before it's control effect took place.
  • Fixed bug where Fennic fox could attack a diagonal enemy after swapping with an ally.
  • Fixed Gravity Well so it doesn’t pull units standing on the target space. This fixes bug where collide effects (such as standing adjacent to a spiked wall) could trigger on a unit standing on the gravity well target space.
  • Fixed bug where shadows were not appearing on quadrupeds, bugs, and snakes in the camp and on animated cards in the deck builder and collection.
  • Changed description of keyword "Block" to "Stop next physical attack from front or sides." to help clarify that side attacks are also blocked.
  • Warcry ability was changed to read: Triggers effect when entering battle.
  • Rally (X) keyword added as: Triggers effect when (X) enters battle.
  • Fixed bug where on screen items might not scale to fit a single atlas and result in unnecessary draw calls and performance drops.
  • Cleansing Fire can no longer detect surprises on units (it will be target units that only have surprise status effects). However, it will remove surprise status effects on units it is cast on.
  • Fixed bug where stacking a Life debug on a unit would result in the unit taking damage and (on armored units) this would cause the damage to be taken to armor instead of life, resulting in a life remaining that overflows the life bar available.
  • Fixed bug on Android when phone screen goes off due to inactivity and then is turned back on again, the game's sound levels restore to default despite the sliders being in the same position player put them in. (#529)
  • Fixed bug where an extra impact SFX played after a shield carrying unit blocked a combo attack.
  • Fixed bug where shield unit would play its impact animation before an arrow fired at it actually hit.
  • Fixed bug where sticky stats do not show on units that are newly summoned. (#537)
  • Animation System Upgrade: Made a special adaptation to the animation system to create more seamless animations when possible for multiple combined effects. For example, when multiple units collide into spikes or multiple units are poisoned, the animations will now occur together (if possible) rather than waiting for each animation to finish separately. Animations will group together when they come from an identical action as part of an uninterrupted sequence. If another action triggers (for example, as result of taking poison damage), the animation group will break apart at that point and show the animations to resolve that event tree before resuming the poison animations for the other units within that group. Note that the animation group will also break apart if the same action type targets an individual unit in more than one separate action so that each of the effects (ex: taking damage) are clearly shown as separate steps.
  • Fixed bug where you could not knockback or pull units through gateways.
  • Fixed bug where terrain obstacles were not getting colored or scaled properly when viewing their card.

Changes Made in v0.29.1

New Cards Available
  • Mana Burn
  • Giant Meteor
  • Fennec Fox
Gameplay Fixes
  • Fixed bug where you could cast Animal Growth on a cactus to summon a squirrel mutant.
  • Fixed bug with controls where dragging to a new space while a target is selected resulted in the enlarged pulsing reticle restarting its animation (appearing to glitch).
  • Fixed bug with the Shaman Staff where the item would not equip unless unit was injured/debuffed as well as another bug where it would not properly heal and debuff unless the target was debuffed.
  • Fixed bug where the “skip AI animations” button remained disabled after the AI turn processing countdown. Players should be able to skip AI animations once the countdown is removed.
  • Fixed bug where stackable status effects (ex: Poison) would not always stack as expected, and instead replace the existing status effect with a new base value. This could happen when a status effect of similar type is placed in the object pool as the result of removal or undo, then, a new action that creates poison (ex: drawing a poison card) results in creation of a new status def. In a battle with AI (since they have their own stack) this would appear to work correct, but within the AI game instance, you'd get a sync error.
  • Fixed bug where summoned unit stats would be visible in the upper left corner of grid (-1,-1) coordinates before being summoned on the board.
  • Fixed bug where the black scrim on starter deck could get stuck in black when switching between starter and custom decks.
  • Balanced the Wolf Spider Mother by preventing its ability to drop spiderlings while it’s frozen or if it is overkilled.
  • Fixed bug where firing anything at a unit within a forcefield would result in no longer being able to undo (instead, undo would act as a replay).
  • Fixed bug with Spoil the Surprise where it was not countering spells that targeted the affixed unit.
  • Fixed bug where Red Dragon had unlimited movement.
  • Fixed bug where a Bandit Cuthroat would trigger her Wreck ability of throwing a knife after chopping down a catcus or other placable.
  • Fixed bug on Android where music/SFX would play even when app is minimized.

Changes Made in v0.28.1

New Features
  • Added Audio Mixer to Game options to control Music, Ambience, and SFX
  • Added music track for battle sequence
  • Ambience on select levels only, more coming in next build
New Cards Available
  • Gateway
  • Unsummon
  • Bear Trap
  • Acolyte
  • Chain Lightning
  • Manticore
  • Gate of Fate
  • Demonic Projection
  • Dark Temptation
  • Seeker Missile
  • Seeker Barrage
  • Giant Yellowjacket
  • Swarm
  • Scorpion
  • Scorpion Wasp
  • Shaman Staff
  • Wolf Spider Mother
  • Cure
  • Wormhole
  • Red Imp
  • Mummy Queen
  • Horse Demon
AI Fixes
  • Fixed “AI gamestate is out of sync with main” issue that was occurring in the campaign. (#363)
  • Fixed bug where AI could illegally use its Farshot abilities at melee range.
  • Fixed bug where AI could illegally move and melee attack with a Farshot unit.
  • Fixed bug where AI would illegally disregard the Taunt rule and move its Summoner away from taunters to cast a spell or attack.
  • Fixed bug where AI’s summon spells would fail to cast after making a melee attack and being knocked back.
  • Fixed bug where AI would attempt to target units no longer on the board resulting in maxing its timeout. (#387)
  • Fixed bug where AI was not object pooling status effects resulting in it maxing its timeout (#388)
  • Fixed AI issue where, if during the AI’s final action execution step an action no longer has legal targets, the execution is stopped and the turn is reprocessed. This resolves issue #396 where an AI player illegally cast a summon Killer Bunnies spell that resulted in the summon of 1 bunny (when in fact two bunnies are required).
  • Fixed bug where an AI Summoner was able to illegally move, attack a character, and then move again showing themselves flying. (#48)
Gameplay Fixes
  • Fixed sync issue that could occur when triggered abilities are undone as result of taking back a move. (#374)
  • Fixed bug where Rust could be targeted on a Soul Reaver who did not have any buffs. (#394)
  • Fixed bug where using Life debuffs in a stack would result in double damage being dealt (ex: Casting Steal Lifeforce on a unit already enchanted would cause 8 life lost instead of 4). (#391)
  • Fixed bug where Life buffs applied to ally units from Bard or other spells on Armored units would result in the armor taking damage when the buff wore off and the unit having an overfilled life bar.
  • Life point losses from debuffs no longer count as damage and no longer trigger Vulnerability effects.
  • Fixed bug where killing a Mind Control unit that buffs allies (Such as Skeleton Captain or Red Starling) resulted in the controlling player losing the buff twice and the original owner regaining the buff.
  • Whenever a Mind Control is removed (ex: Rust, Dispel Magic) the unit will now re-activate and accept orders assuming it now belongs to the player taking their turn.
  • Fixed bug where diagonal melee attacks would not pop Forcefield bubble.
  • Fixed bug where it was possible for a Forcefield protected character to be poisoned by Poison Cloud
  • Fixed bug where squirrels died at the start of their owners turn after their Animal Overrun buff wore off.
  • Fixed bug where Power Steal could be used on furniture.
  • Fixed the timing of the Fire Elemental’s deal damage to attackers ability so that it occurs in sync with the attack hit rather than afterward (which looked strange when it was knocked back and causing damage).
  • Fixed bug where, if an armored unit protected by a forcefield is hit by psychic damage, their armor no longer functions.
  • Changed Poison Cloud to: Deal 2 damage ignoring armor and give Poison (2) to all other non-undead units. This now prevents the caster from being poisoned (regardless of undead type) and causes poison gas to ignore armor (as gas should).
  • Changed Guardian Angel so that it counter attacks units that attack her as part of the action redirection. The unit who was attacked originally will no longer make the counter attack.
  • Counter attacks now trigger on a new event "Resolve Cast" which fires after an action is determined legal but BEFORE its effects are executed. This puts counter attacks on the resolution stack first, but resolves them AFTER effects that trigger during the effect execution, such as the Gladiator harpoon pull. This results in correct/expected visual order and corrects issues where counter attack responses were illegally triggered since attacks hadn't actually taken place.
  • Changed Transfer Consciousness cost from 2 to 1 and made it so casting this spell removes any Mind Control status effects and permanently changes the controller to the caster. This fixes bug where it was possible to transfer to a unit under madness (or Mind Control) and then lose your Summoner when the effect wore off.
  • Made it so Animate Tree can only target visible trees, not trees anywhere on the board.
  • Fixed bug where Cleanse also removed equipment from units.
  • Taunt: To eliminate confusion over the Taunt ability, I have changed the controls. When a unit is locked in combat with a taunter and the player selects that unit to command them, they will only see the taunters light up as valid actions (the movement path and alternative targets will no longer show). If the player attempts to drag to a non-lit target, the warning prompt will trigger and read “Pinned! Attack taunter”. If the player is attempting to move to a new location to attack a non-taunter enemy while a taunter is adjacent to that space, the move will be prevented and a warning triggered “Blocked by taunter”. Additionally, I have changed the Taunt keyword to read "Pin adjacent enemies. They must attack taunters first."
  • Controls: Added a movement counter that indicates how many spaces user is moving as they drag out of how many spaces total the selected unit can move.
  • Controls: Adjusted controls so it is now much easier to execute a diagonal melee attack dragging from the unit
  • Fixed bug where entrance/exit tiles were selectable as playable targets for AOE spells like fireball, cone of cold and dispel magic.
  • Controls: Reduced the drag to select ratio and adjusted so that non-retina screens wouldn’t have an overly sensitive threshold. This helps reduce occurrences of getting a warning message when tapping and holding to select and enemy character when finger drifts slightly.
  • Reduced the cost of single summon squirrels, Killer bunny, and Skeleton Warrior to 0. Originally, these were included in Deck Builder to showcase what the 2X summon spells created, but I noted players using them as single summons and agreed with player feedback that reducing cost would be a great way to further justify value as individual cards.
  • Fixed bug where flapping wing sound was not being played during flight animation.
  • Flying keyword has changed to read: "Moves over units, obstacles and revealed traps." Flying units no can longer walk through traps or end their move on a trap without taking damage. Instead, flying units will fly over revealed and ally traps, using the flight animation. Revealed traps include spike traps starting on the map that are known to all players. Any flying unit that ends its move on a trap will trigger the trap and take damage like other units.
  • Fixed a bug that would prevent LoginError from playing against the AI because the "Error" string in his name tripped our serialized backworker error catcher. Props for helping us discover this most unusual bug.
  • Fixed bug where bird units could be equipped with armor and weapons. Sorry to disappoint those who enjoyed the little Red Starling wielding a massive two-handed Orc hammer ;)
  • Adjusted the type classification of various cards to allow for more synergies (ex: Griffon and Phoenix are now considered animals)
  • Traps now require visibility for placement. Previously, they could be placed anywhere on board regardless of LOS.
  • Fixed bug where player could achieve inconsistent results with auto designated targets due to my allowance to control the caster facing within the targeting controls. Examples include Breed generating different animal configuration depending on chosen target or Seeker Barrage firing in the incorrect order sequence.
  • Made it so that Discard ability triggers now function like surprises: You cannot undo past them.
  • Upgraded Exploding Fireball from 5 ->6 damage and Knockback (1) -> (3)
  • Added VFX to show poison status on units.
  • Snake: Increased Life 2 -> 3 to help him remain a tactically distinctive choice from the 1/1 Flying Yellowjacket (both Inflict Poison (1).

6
Events / Develop with Ross - Episode 3 Player Ideas Brought to Life
« on: January 22, 2019, 08:56:28 PM »
Develop with Ross - Episode 3: Player Ideas Brought to Life!

For those joining my development stream on Wednesday January 23th (9AM-11:30AM MT) on our Twitch channel here are the cards I plan to implement during the stream. These cards were inspired by player ideas that we discussed the past week on our Discord channel.

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7
Events / Develop with Ross - Episode 2
« on: January 15, 2019, 08:45:57 PM »
Develop with Ross - Episode 2: Let's make some more cards!

For those joining my development stream on Wednesday January 16th (9AM-11:30AM MT) on our Twitch channel I've put together this sampling of cards I plan to implement. If you've got other ideas you'd like me to try during the stream, feel welcome to post them here.

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8
Game Discussion / Game Duration Solve Ideas
« on: December 29, 2018, 10:22:36 AM »
One of my original goals for PvP was quick battles (~3 minutes) to provide optimal experiences for mobile and short interim breaks on PC. I've observed that our recent update (adding both the heavy freeze mechanics and the advent of custom decks with trillions of possible combinations to affect game outcome) has resulted in longer game durations. This isn't necessarily a bad thing (if players are still finding the experience engaging) but I still want a solution for those quick battles for players that want or need that choice.

This has got me to thinking about ways of constraining the battles. Lain has suggested an idea of limiting the rounds as a potential solution (something akin to Warhammer objectives) which I really liked. Playing off this idea, I'm considering a way to combine restricted turn time with objective to create a fast pace game where the duration is guaranteed.

Rather than limiting turn time like other games might do (ex: 90 seconds) which doesn't actually reduce game time (in fact, it can increase it when players intentionally drag out turns to frustrate their opponent) what if we were to limit the game duration itself like a chess match?

Let's say we wanted games to take no longer than 5 minutes. Each player would get a total of two minutes, 30 seconds. You can manage that time however you like, but after you've spent your turn time, you no longer take turns, which adds a very intensive pressure  to complete your turns as quick as possible. If both players exhaust their time limit, the game determines the winner based on whichever summoner has the lowest life, tie breaking by life of remaining units, and finally establishing a draw if everything is equal.

Thoughts on this from the community?


9
Events / Cold Hearted Christmas Deckbuilder Launch Stream
« on: December 23, 2018, 04:10:17 PM »
It's a "Cold Hearted" Christmas...
And your presents have arrived!

   

Greetings everyone!

I'm stoked to announce that our much anticipated Deck Editor feature for Summoners Fate will launch tonight to coincide with Liz (Alizigators) "Summoners Sunday" live stream tonight on Twitch. The event starts on Twitch at 7PM MT on Liz's channel here. Since everyone is in different timezones, you can sign-up in advance using our handy calendar which should present the event in our local time zone. Let us know you're coming.

If you would like to play the build with us during the Stream, join our Discord and send a message to me (@RossD20Studios) so I can provide you with download instructions.

For tonight's event, we're playing exclusively on PC so I can patch in the event of any issues. Per popular demand, we're rolling this build out early knowing that we couldn't test every possible card combinations' impact to build stability, though we have done a thorough smoke test and fixed everything we can to ensure a smooth experience. For those already participating in our early access, I will have a full list of change notes available shortly.

10
Events / Summoners Streamers
« on: December 05, 2018, 10:48:34 AM »

Please welcome Mike (MCN_Mike), Liz (Alizigator), and Ethan (thefuzzydwarf) to our community.

Sign-up to watch streams in our new calendar.

We’re excited to announce the first Summoners Fate streams on Twitch! We’re partnering with enthusiastic, up-and-coming streamers to be the first to play our game for viewers worldwide. Mike kicks off on Wednesday, December 5th 11:30AM MT with an in-depth play of our current build. Liz aims to keep you entertained each week with Summoners Sundays. Ethan aspires to compete when we grow to become a fan-favorite eSport.

11
Events / Dreamhack Atlanta 2018
« on: November 14, 2018, 02:34:38 PM »
SUMMONERS FATE
MULTIPLAYER COMPETITION
AT DREAMHACK

$500 in Prize Giveaways!

WIN Full Retail Version of Summoners Fate ($24.99)
WIN an Armored Squirrel Plush (Priceless!)

Indie Playground Booth I-30

D20Studios is showcasing Summoners Fate at Dreamhack Atlanta 2018 and to celebrate the weekend of gaming, we're giving away 300 Free Play Keys that will allow players to download and play our multiplayer early access of Summoners Fate for this weekend only and compete for chances to win a full retail copy of the game. We want to see attendees playing in groups on the show floor on their custom gaming rigs, having an awesome time hurling squirrels, summoning skeletal legions, and mind controlling their friends in our epic multiplayer battles. Show us your excitement on Twitter and you could also take home your own armored squirrel plush.

JOIN OUR DISCORD TO MEET FELLOW PLAYERS
https://discord.gg/d20studios

HOW TO ENTER
  • GET FREE PLAY KEY from the Summoners Fate booth in the Indie Playground Booth I-30.
  • Battle PvP vs. Dreamhack players. Join our Discord channel to sync up with opponents.
  • Complete an achievement to win a full retail copy of Summoners Fate ($24.99)*.
ACHIEVEMENTS
For Battles Completed Between
Friday 12PM EST 11/16 – Sunday 8PM EST 11/18

Each Achievement is Awarded to the Top 5 Players
4 Achievements x5 Winners Each = 20 Winners!

  • Grand Champion
    Win the most battles against unique players.
  • Friend Slayer
    Win the most battles against other players.
  • Bot Slayer
    Win the most PvP battles against the AI.
  • Summoners Addiction
    Play the most PvP battles.
*Winners notified via email by 11/30/18 will receive permanent early access key and retail version when game launches. Limit 1 WIN per player.

THESE SQUIRRELS ARE TIRED OF BEING HURLED…

SHOW YOUR EXCITEMENT FOR SUMMONERS FATE
AND TAKE ONE HOME!

HOW TO WIN ARMORED SQUIRREL PLUSH
  • Play Summoners Fate multiplayer on the show floor with your friends.
  • Take an epic photo playing the game together.
  • Post your photo on Twitter with message “Hurling Squirrels in #summonersfate with @D20Studio at Dreamhack #DHATL18”.
  • Winners announced online by 12PM EST Sunday 11/18.**
**Winners - Please pick up your squirrel in person at our Booth I-30 by 4PM EST.

12
Game Updates & News / Dev Log
« on: January 10, 2018, 11:12:31 AM »
Dev Log: Creating the Card Management System

Greetings all! I was finding myself going down a bit of a feature creep/perfectionist lull with the production tools, so I decided to shift gears and work on our card management system. The card management system is the UI that allows the player to view all of the possible cards in the collection as well as create custom decks. If you’ve played CCG’s like Hearthstone, you’re probably familiar with what this system looks like, but just in case, here’s a quick breakdown of the elements:

  • Collection Management (Ability to view all of the cards)
  • Crafting (Ability to make new cards)
  • Deck Builder
    • View cards to place in deck
    • View cards in the deck (visualization)
    • Deck Stats
    • Ability to name deck
    • Number of each type of card in deck (Units, Spells, Equipment)
    • Average mana cost
    • Total mana cost
    • Card Quantity (X/20)
    • Sort By
    • Filter
    • Search
    • Back Out Button
    • Suggest Cards
    • “New” Indicator that appears over cards recently added to player’s collection
    • Deck Limit (Per card)
  • Party/Team Roster (A special case for Summoners Fate to also choose which characters are in your party).
Atm, I’m focused specifically on Deck Builder, as it is the most complex part of the system. The first challenge is layout, which is even more challenging for me because I support both portrait and landscape. The basic idea is to divide the screen into two parts (collection/cards available) and the deck visualization. The most intuitive approach is to drag cards from the collection and drop them into the deck.

My first step was to get a basic idea for the main layout of these elements. Portrait is the most limiting layout, so I started there. After some testing, I discovered I could fit about 3 cards across the narrowest dimension of the screen with the text still being readable. Additionally, I would support a “full size preview” for the user on tap to view the keywords and larger text. This would allow user to browse their collection 6 cards at a time. Additionally, I can fit the 20 cards needed to construct the deck as mini cards (showing only the icon and cost). As shown in images below, these numbers also work for landscape if I expand the number of columns.


Portrait layout for deck management. Cards in your collection are at the bottom, cards in your deck at the top.


Landscape layout for deck management. Cards in your collection are at the bottom, cards in your deck at the top.

Now that I knew the layout, the next step was determining how to effectively render and control display of all the cards. I decided to use Feathers, an open source library designed for AS3 and Starling, which has the exact components I need and (because it is open source) unlimited potential for me to customize for my game’s specific needs.

I use the “List” control component because it offers cell recycling. This is an absolute must for rendering 100+ items (particularly visual ones) because it vastly reduces the demands on the system to maintain/mask the hundreds of items the user will be scrolling. To reduce overhead as much as possible, I wrote a custom ListCellRenderer that takes the card data and renders it directly into a card visualization.

With this, I can get 60FPS scrolling performance. The only issue I’m still running into is that there is a slight “hiccup” the first time a user paginates to a new page of unit cards. This is because there is an overhead in the initial creation of the armatures to assemble the units. In several competitor games I’ve tested, this seems to be an acceptable “norm” though I would love a solution if any developers out there have an idea how to mitigate this.

Now for the hardest part: managing a texture atlas for 400+ cards. I also have to consider that with each game update, that number will grow as cards are added. In my previous dev logs, I’ve discussed how I can achieve optimal performance by scaling all assets to fit a single texture atlas (yielding only 1 draw call). However, this only works because each game instance contains a finite number of resources that I can manage without affecting quality. As the number of cards increases, it becomes impossible to fit all assets on a single atlas, so it’s necessary to paginate the atlas into multiple sheets.


This image shows the initial result of rasterizing the card images. At 400+ draw calls, application responsiveness is very sluggish.

I’m using Gil Amran’s open source DMT library to create my texture atlases dynamically from vector graphics. The library uses a rectangle packer algorithm to sort assets and place them on texture atlases, creating new atlases as needed. The algorithm is optimized to maximize use of area so that textures are packed as tightly as possible to reduce the total number of atlas sheets created. Generally, this works fine because most game levels can render on a single sheet. With hundreds of assets to manage however, this can result in an exponential increase in the number of draw calls when assets needed to render a layered display object (such as a character armature) are split across multiple texture atlases. For those familiar with the painter algorithm (see Daniel Sperl’s amazing depiction here) the best way to reduce draw calls and optimize performance is to plan your texture atlases according to how your game will display the assets.

This is why I use open source technology whenever possible: when modifications are needed to suit particular needs, I can examine the code and make the modifications as needed to adapt and evolve the software. And in turn, share these benefits with other developers once I’ve found and perfected a solution! In this case, the feature I needed was the ability to control how my texture atlases were being created based on how I would render the display objects.

To accomplish this, I created two properties “addedId” and “assetGroupId”. AddedId is a number indicating when something gets added to the raster list. AssetGroupId is a string identifier indicating that the asset to be rastered must have all assets within the same group added to the same texture atlas. Prior to rasterizing, I sort all of the assets by the addedId. Then, as items are packed into the texture atlas, I check to see if the next asset fits. If it doesn’t fit, I check to see if any of his “assetGroupId” buddies were added, and, if so, I pull all of those assets out of that atlas as well, then start a new atlas. Following this procedure, I was able to reduce draw calls down from 400+ to under 40 which, in turn, vastly improved the FPS and responsiveness of the application.


This image shows the draw call result of grouping the textures on each atlas according to how the game will render them. This is a 10X reduction from the initial test and results in substantially better application response.

Every choice has a trade off. In this case, my decision to break and start a new texture atlas rather than taking the next asset that fits can somethings result in an unnecessary number of texture atlases being generated. Where the original algorithm might have fit all of my assets into one atlas, the new algorithm might break it into two. At the same time, I find in practice that the tradeoff is worth it because I can guarantee more predictable performance by controlling which assets appear on each atlas.

13
Game Updates & News / Development Roadmap
« on: December 04, 2017, 12:08:04 PM »


Hi everyone! As promised in our Kickstarter, I plan to be fully transparent about our development process including what we're aiming for and when we plan to deliver it. Managing the Kickstarter campaign took a hit to our development timeline, and after carefully reassessing the remaining items, I've put together the (above) roadmap showcasing our goals leading to the Early Access closed-beta and worldwide launch.

Our commitment to you will be to provide daily updates on the game as well as periodic updates on the state of the roadmap so that you're informed if/when things change, why they changed, and what the impact will be to the schedule and the game.

Goals for Early Access:
  • Basic gameplay tutorial dungeon mission
  • Single player content via selectable missions. Selectable missions will include a variety of pitched battles (single battle vs. AI), scenarios (challenges where you have a fixed team/deck vs. AI in a particular level), and dungeons (a multi-stage battle with continuous progression including procedurally generated monsters/challenges). Note: The dungeons will not yet be connected via a campaign map or have a continuous progression. For the initial early access release, they will be selectable missions. You will be able to choose your team/deck going into battle.
  • All early access players will start with a subset of total cards available. I’m aiming for an initial 100 cards out of an intended 400+ for WW launch. Note: Card reward/unlocking will not be functional in the early access. I intend to reset card data/access once the progression/unlock path is finished so that we can test the pacing.
  • Multiplayer at this stage will feature real-time and desync multiplayer. The functionality will be basic: no chatroom/lobby setup (like in Hero Mages), rather, you opt to play a live match and it puts you in a queue. The next player joining will automatically connect with you to battle. Chat capabilities will be limited and possibility not available. Deysnc battles will download a list of opponent constructed decks to your device and will store them so that you can play the missions offline. Basic stats only (win/loss) plus replay will be available.
  • Hero Party and Deck Management: You’ll be able to construct team and deck from all of the initial cards available allowing you to experiment with a wide array of the game mechanics in both singleplayer and multiplayer matches.
What are the Risks and what’s the plan?
  • I have a surgery scheduled in January that will put me out of action for 2 weeks and this is shown on the timeline.
  • The number of bugs/feedback discovered in early access and soft-launch testing has high potential to impact the WW launch and/or delay certain features until post launch (namely, async multiplayer and whatever new features are suggested by players).
  • Async Multiplayer is at risk for WW launch. This feature will be completed post launch if it doesn’t make it for WW.
  • We have a cushion of 2 months during soft-launch to polish the game. Note: Polish means fix bugs, small enhancements (ex: VFX) and NOT addition of new features.
  • If the game isn’t fully ready to launch by end of August, I will likely push the launch to February or March of 2019. This is due to the August-January period being a high traffic launch period for AAA and a dead zone for indie game activity following the holidays. Soft launch and early access gameplay will remain active during this period.
Questions or concerns?
Please share your thoughts, ideas and opinions with me. I read all Discord messages and forum posts and typically respond within a 24 hour period or less.

14
Game Discussion / Chaos Magic
« on: November 22, 2017, 09:29:56 AM »
Chaos
When non-being gives rise to existential motion, the raw, primal and pure potential energy created is called Chaos. Chaos is without bounds or rules; it is not limited by logic and reason. Even mathematical definitions such as 1+1 = 2 can be nonsensical or as valid as 1+1 = 3. If the entirety of existence could be construed as a line, then the period of history that represents Chaos would exist as a singular point. But, as Chaos is without time and order, this “point”, this “moment” persists as an eternity that continuously draws out infinite eventualities and realities.

From the infinite potential of Chaos, conscious thought is born, giving rise to being, celestial order, and the construct of time and the physical universe. Chaos is not a moment left in the past, however, but a source continually drawn upon to keep the universe within motion.

Chaos Magic
When chaos energy flares into the physical world, its manifestations are unstable and cause potent destructive force. While destructive, Chaos is not inherently evil, and many good and innocent individuals are gifted (or cursed as some say) with the power to channel Chaos Magic. For example, Nova the Sorceress, is a notable Chaos sorceress. At a young age, she unintentionally destroyed her village with fire when her born powers were first triggered, though she herself is not malicious like the Dreadnoughts - evil inclined beings motivated by the desire to destroy the world.

Chaos Spells
In Summoners Fate, Chaos spells grant powerful destructive abilities and have the highest damage output per cost of any other magic group.
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What do you think of these ideas and what kinds of Chaos spells would you like to see in Summoners Fate?

15
Game Discussion / Void Magic
« on: November 21, 2017, 08:09:13 PM »
The Void
In the beginning, before time and space, there was the Void. The Void is the existential state of non-being. It is “nothingness” - an inherent truth and the persistent origin of all things, so speaks the scholars and ancient texts of the Academy of Arcane Arts. Accounts of those who have experienced the origin moment often speak of the Void as an emotion - the “feeling of emptiness”. It is a balance of fear and hope: fear that eternity is without meaning or purpose, forever alone in despair, and hope that within lies the potential to be something that is great and loved. This innate quality of non-being is what causes existential essence, the motion that drives the creation of all things within the universe.

Void Magic
The Void is often misunderstood and many of those gifted with its insights are driven to madness. In Summoners Fate, Void magic represents the negative state of nothingness and is associated with fear, despair, hunger and death. Dark and nightmarish beings, demons of the Void, are shadowy like creatures that feed upon the thoughts and dreams of corporeal beings. They are constant reminders of the existential balance between fear and hope. Void spells include the power to nourish by taking life, the conjuring of dark beings, and the power to bring death.

Void Spells
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What do you think of these ideas and what kinds of Void spells would you like to see in Summoners Fate?

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