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=DF= October 8th Design Notes: Book 3: The Awakened Depths: The Great One

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10/8/2021 22:34:04   

DragonFable & MechQuest


Book 3: The Awakened Depths: The Great One

Hey there, heroes!

Last time, in The Awakened Depths, you and your allies, led by Galanoth, made your way deep beneath the mountain in search of The Great One. But do you have what it takes to survive the Gauntlet?

What awaits beyond? Will you be able to convince The Great One to aid in the reclamation of Dragesvard? It's time to delve into The Gauntlet with your dragon and face The Great One!

Head over your alliance camp in Book 3 Dragonsgrasp to play this week's release: The Great One.

Also this week: Introducing the Alpha test of the Game Log!

The Game Log is a new addition that will show information on what happens in-game and in battles, including damage/healing, buffs and debuffs, in-game notifications and more.

You can turn on the Game Log Alpha in the Options screen.

As this is an Alpha version, all visuals and log data are very subject to change.

When the log is open, in-game notifications will be suppressed, and instead added to the log!

The ; (semicolon) key can be used to hide or show the log at will (There is also a small button you can click to do so!)

The ' (apostrophe) key can be used to toggle the log between system logs and battle logs.

To scroll through previous log messages, you can put your mouse cursor over the log window and scroll using the mouse wheel.

Logs are currently not saved anywhere.

Let us know what you think! Your feedback will help a lot in shaping this awesome new feature.

Have feedback about recent releases? Have any crazy theories or ideas? Want to discuss all things DragonFable?

Join the discussion on the official forums!

Want to play DragonFable without using an internet browser?

Check out the Artix Games Launcher!

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Tags: #Verlyrus
DF AQW  Post #: 1
10/8/2021 23:47:57   
Laeon val Observis

Well, certainly the alpha stage Game Log still has some while improvement to have more pizzazz, but it definitely serves well. That should help accelerate data compilation for Inn battles, especially for those who don't really have the time to wait for the Endgame Wiki and the Forums to update, and don't have a combative intuition/instinct to overcome unknowns in battle.

As for the newest segment of our quest to save Dragesvard...

So the reason why the Great One (yeah, I'm a stickler to titles even though there's two of them. Unless of course they're one body, two heads) is being ambiguous was just to troll with the Dragonsgrasp DLs who unintentionally used them as a landing pad for their fortress. Otherwise, they are straight to the point. And, boy, they are definitely huge.

Humor aside, looks like they are one of the first generation Great Dragons if they know about the history of ancient Lore and our companion's descendant. For all their by the book to the inevitability of creation and destruction, at least they show how open they could be. That mumble of Vseslava adds even more intrigue into the workings of the very thing that Jaania is trying to tamper with. Is it really just more than a simple lump of mana, is it some device, or is it a being in and of itself? How that data will affect our saga moving forward, we'll just have to see that as it unfolds. For now, at least we have new allies with the Great One ready to muster the DragonLords to our aid.

< Message edited by Laeon val Observis -- 10/8/2021 23:48:14 >
DF AQW  Post #: 2
10/9/2021 0:02:14   

Oh, wow, a log - that's a huge improvement! Some feedback(?):

Is it at all possible for pop-ups that are triggered within a battle, as well as the application/removal messages for status effects, to be moved from the system log to the battle log? These are components of the combat and it makes more sense/convenience for them to be there.
Could the battle log also display whether an attack is Melee/Pierce/Magic as well as its element? While this isn't super relevant now, more information is always better and could future-proof scenarios where recalling the damage type of a prior attack is helpful.
Is it possible for the log to tell you how much damage MP DoTs have done? Only normal DoTs seem to be currently supported.
Is it possible for the log to also tell you the duration of a status effect alongside the application message? More information is always better.
Is it possible for the log to use the display name (as seen on the stats panel) of status effects? While some status effects in older content lack display names, there are more than a few situations where mismatching effect names could be confusing or misleading to a player.
Is it possible for the log to stop itself from printing the same line multiple times in a row? Walking through a pop-up area in a walkaround or using a weapon like the Sun God Scythe spams the pop-up and clogs up the log.

I don't know how feasible this is, but is it also possible for the log to display the % damage (or maybe even Crit/Bonus modifiers?) of an attack that's been used? Maybe as hover text? Having a log is a GREAT opportunity to reduce reliance on external documentation / tell players what attacks actually do, and directly telling the player when a status effect has been applied is already pretty big improvement.

Adding a battle log is a pretty massive improvement and will no doubt be an accessibility increase to many players, looking forward to seeing it progress!
DF  Post #: 3
10/9/2021 1:00:58   

New quest is super cool, but as promised, here's more feedback on the log!

I really like the log overall, and I think it's a great QoL improvement. I especially like how the log can be accessed retroactively

I think that my main issue with it in its current state is its positioning and text size. The text is significantly smaller than any other text in the game, including the Build Number in the bottom right corner. There's also quite a bit of white space to the right of the text. I think it'd be a lot more usable if the background was transluscent, the colors of the text made a bit more colorful, and the font size were slightly enlarged. A transluscent background would also let it take up more real estate without blocking out a quarter of the player's screen.

My other issue is how tricky it is to keep track of where you are in the log while scrolling. The sensitivity on the scroll seems to be set pretty high, which combined with the lack of an scrollbar indicator can make it easy to get lost in the log during long gameplay sessions.

In terms of concrete things to include, I think having an indicator of the turn count would be great, and ideally an indicator for when the turn is passed, which would also help with figuring out where the .

Having slightly more informative buttons (instead of two red squares)/more in game description of what the Game Log and Battle log store would be helpful for players to get used to the feature.

I also agree with TFS that the log using internal names is weird and unintuitive, especially because some of the displayed names are completely uninformative (Ice Scythe, VIK, FC, Aegis, etc are all called 'Effect'). I'm not sure how you would handle effects like DoomKnight's autokill which have blank display names, though.

Also agree that printing the same line repeatedly is a minor annoyance.

Finally, this is super nitpicky, but the buttons overlap with the left most color pickers in the greenscreen room. There probably isn't a way to place it where it'd never overlap anything, though.

Overall, this is a great QoL improvement, and it's already been used to improve the documentation on the Endgame Wiki!
DF  Post #: 4
10/9/2021 1:39:33   

I think this entire quest can basically be summed up by one word: "Ah."
And I find that the BEST thing ever. XD

I like the added bits of lore that start to give more credence that LORE is Land Of Rising Evil.

Havent tested out the log, and quite honestly I dont want to. With games in general, I dont like looking toooooo in depth with the numbers cos that gives me a complex and a headache at times.

AQ DF MQ AQW  Post #: 5
10/9/2021 1:54:57   
DragonFable Boxcat

RE log stuff

Attack "type", % base damage, stat damage, and bonus to hit might make things a bit too cluttered. I'll play with things a bit - attack type was something that I considered but ultimately felt wasn't that important but, thinking ahead, could be. One issue is that these would require some separate parsing, which runs into some other technical issues.

Effect duration/Turn order: The game calculates turns... in a unique way. I'm sure I could figure out a way to parse "turns", and "proper duration", but it's tricky, to say the least. So these are likely.

Line repetition: Something that needs to be pretty careful about. Automatically detecting repetition has the potential to run into all sorts of trouble. Not likely to be widely solved, more of an issue with implementation of pop-up notification pads than the log (and replacing/editing all of those is a bit out of the scope of this project). I have a couple ideas, will need testing, and will probably be after figuring out turn order parsing.

Status panel names: Well, this is a case where old engine stuff comes to bite things in the butt. The "internal name" is, in reality the only "name" that effects have. I have a potential fix in the works, but it isn't a guaranteed catch all. That's probably the extent of the fixing I'll attempt however, besides manually adjusting anything that needs to be.

Translucent background is already on the to-do list, as well as removing the "selected" indicator.
Moving the log around might be doable, resizing would be... um... I think that would be a massive project in itself, unfortunately. Of course, the current size/spacing/visuals/etc isn't final in any way at all, I literally just drew a rectangle and chose random colors.

Regarding scroll speed: as far as I'm aware it's scrolling as slow as it can. I can try to look into things though.

So yeah, I appreciate the feedback, and I have a lot to do and figure out still!

And finally, I'm glad people enjoyed the quest!
AQ MQ  Post #: 6
10/9/2021 1:56:12   
Primate Murder

The quest really is great.

I loved the art, particularly of the Genokratos and how minuscule we are in comparison. I liked their speech patterns and their reasoning, I liked that the alien perspective and that moment of sheepishness. I loved the exposition, the history, and that phrase - about how the world was not made for humans, but we made it ours - is one of the best I've seen in DF. I even liked the music, and I normally barely notice it!

So yeah, it really was something amazing.
AQ DF  Post #: 7
10/9/2021 2:47:12   
Laeon val Observis

@Verly Glad to see which one of the suggestions are plausible.

TBH, I think the attack type and stat influences to direct damages feels like unnecessary technicalities outside of bug reports at best, outright spoonfeeding at worst. The same for effect durations. I prefer to retain a sense of discovery and alertness (a simple note that I had been struck with damage and any status effect it inflicts is more than enough). Otherwise, I won't find any purpose to the status and resistance panel of our characters. While I understand that resizing the Game Log is a possibility (and one that I too would welcome even if I could see the current details just fine), I believe that all those extra details might be end up clutters that only an IT person would look into regardless of how large or small the log's screen is.

For line repetitions, is it possible to assign them something like how certain notifications in AQW's chatboxes do? If I remember right, one of the settings players could customize is to hide notifications with red font color. Perhaps that's a possibility to solve that.

Nonetheless, appreciate the potential changes, especially how the background might look like.

< Message edited by Laeon val Observis -- 10/9/2021 2:49:40 >
DF AQW  Post #: 8
10/9/2021 4:58:52   

Wasn't expecting to be ko'd in a story quest. Those Great Dragons, though...

Colossal. Majestic. Wise. ...trollish.

And the music that accompanied them? Movie-quality score. Cannot wait to see what happens next.
DF  Post #: 9
10/9/2021 5:40:13   

Tried it several times. With only two possible outcomes.
1: Get insta-killed when using fire
2. Get grinded down since i cant do enough damage

Tried almost every class now. If DmK wont work, i give up
DF MQ  Post #: 10
10/9/2021 5:52:22   
Laeon val Observis

^Huh? You have CW, and as I CW'd the living daylights out of the quest without looping it (yeah, just another day in the story office), something's off with your strats.

Post-dinner EDIT: Since I only did a single swift run, I don't have full battle data on the boss. Stat-wise, I just used my default configuration (130 INT, 130 STR, 100 WIS, 85 END for player, 200 FIT/MAG/PROT for dragon). For combat, I started off by shaving, in unempowered fashion, the foe's AllRes (Sets up for the one-shot stun) while pet dragon goes a roastin'. The next steps are even more devastating if Uragiri bankai is done, but basically unleash hell with eGambit>Stun, Shred soon after, Untangle, finally either laugh at the stone or Thanos.

Since the boss has a shield, it's pretty much needed to snipe or bunker bust. Non-CW owners could resort to Techno or Ranger, or Dragon Mage if starting class is Mage. Can be supplemented with Doom Uaanta.

< Message edited by Laeon val Observis -- 10/9/2021 6:28:50 >
DF AQW  Post #: 11
10/9/2021 7:50:30   

Oh boy oh BOY I've been waiting for this lore-dump!

And honestly the execution was better than I ever could've hoped for. The paper scroll aesthetic, the music, the narration; all perfect. I also really liked the Great One's dialogue (or maybe trialogue...?) - it seems the first-generation Great Dragons have a very different perspective from the Avatars' in regards to how closely Lore's balance should be maintained. Also wow... I bet Akriloth wished he was that big.

Allow me to indulge myself a bit here. I think this supports the theory that the whole business between the Aequilibria and the Exalted Alliance went down before Lore's conception, otherwise I think GenoKratos would've brought it up or at least hinted at it. Not to mention it's consistent with Lock and Key's puzzle. I also couldn't help but notice that the depiction of the Dragons, Avatars and Lore looked awfully similar to the mural from this quest, which is also the same thing Notha showed us during the Reckoning war by the way (I would have a screenshot, but we don't really get a good look at it; it's partially covered by something in both quests).

A brief aside about the aforementioned quest. Watching that intro cutscene again after this weeks release was quite insightful. There seems to be a lot of hints and build-up towards this reveal and it only further cements a theory that was shared around the forums nearly five years ago that Dove is himself the Great Light Dragon. It really puts into perspective just how long the team has been feeding me us this expanded lore for us to piece together.

But back to the mural. Now you might be thinking "Well duh Flab, they're both depicting the Elements, of course they look similar". Well I think there might be a little more to it than that. To me the placement of the Saviour and Destroyer being either side of the centre like the Celestials and Infernals are in the mural is no coincidence; this relates to Lock and Key's jigsaw, specifically about the "newer, better children" made "in their image. But only two this time". Meaning that the Saviour and Destroyer were essentially meant to be better versions of the Celestials and Infernals. But there's something else as well...



That mumble of Vseslava adds even more intrigue into the workings of the very thing that Jaania is trying to tamper with. Is it really just more than a simple lump of mana, is it some device, or is it a being in and of itself?

We know the Mana Core is the literal heart and soul of Lore, and from the mural we can see that Mana is the power that exists between the Elements. But could it be more than that? Is it a coincidence that the Shapeless Empire possessed a piece of the Mana Core as well as the new Saviour Egg? And inferring that the Saviour and Destroyer are children of the Aequilibria, could it be fair to say that these two things have the same point of origin? We know that the Aequilibria are sleeping but where are they sleeping? Is Mana merely between the Elements or is it the power that the Elements themselves sprang from? Is the Core one living being or rather.... two?

TL:DR this release is amazing and I think the Aequilibria are the Mana Core.
AQ DF MQ AQW  Post #: 12
10/9/2021 7:59:08   

@Docblade - I too used CW.
Stun him, increase your crit chance, Stun with Draco, and Build soulthreads.
A strong enough weapon, like Yarek's Staff, worked for me.

Otherwise, Try using Technomancer and/or SW/MSW.
AQ DF MQ AQW  Post #: 13
10/9/2021 9:07:26   

There is something comforting about beings as old as Genokratos being massive trolls when they feel like it or rather not feel like it in this case


Yeah I think at this point we could definitely slay that Fluffy and Draco were meant to be far better versions of the Infernals and Celestials than the Aequilibria could hope they could be. This still begs the question of why exactly the Infernals and Celestials were imperfect beings. Was it simply because they no longer wished to follow the pattern that Draco and the Elements were supposed to follow?

As was suspected, the World Destroyer and Savior served as blueprints for the creation of the Great Elemental Dragons, developed by the Avatars in a panic, as they were prone to do, in order to maintain balance on Lore when Fluffy's and Draco's original incarnations went missing.

This also begs the question as to what even caused them to die originally. The answer might lie in the Collection of Lorian songs, rhymes and other things
that mentions two dragons going out to play under the "sun" and far away and only one of them returned when the Avatars called them back and then the last one remaining vanishing after it went to play under the "moon"

The Sun and Moon tend to be used as symbols or stand-ins for the elements of the Light and the Darkness so I'm curious if this somehow implicates the two elements being responsible in some way for their original incarnations having died. If light and darkness are in fact being implicated here then it might stand to reason that Darkness might actually mean Shadowscythe here which would make sense given their eternal mission of plunging Lore back into Darkness. Additionally, if any prime element had a hand in their disappearance it would make sense why they started to blame each other beyond simply not keeping a closer eye on the incarnations. The curious factor is what things of the Light would have contributed to one of the dragon's demise.

Alternatively, the sun and moon could be referencing Creation and Destruction. Noticeably there is depiction of the sun and moon right in the middle of the judgement scale in the Drahr'Haitr and Drahr'Dolass boss fight so maybe when they both went to play under the Sun they were playing with Creation itself but eventually this led to one of them dying and the one of the two left died to destruction/chaos/entropy for some reason.

Hmm another alternative might be that one killed the other and died later themselves for whatever reason.

Also: "as long as the mana core still slumbers" Well that's a big no no if Flabagast is right about what could be down there then Jaania's plan could quite literally doom us all even more than we thought, also might mean Akanthus' little bomb is liable to irritate what's lying in there.

Uh these lore drops were so good

< Message edited by Vaalirus -- 10/9/2021 9:21:52 >


Let us find tranquility.
DF  Post #: 14
10/9/2021 18:01:58   


outright spoonfeeding at worst.

I strongly disagree with this sentiment. There's really no point in saying that information anyone can just search up anyway shouldn't be more accessible - the Pedia/Wiki staff have been working for years to ensure that anyone can find it. This is just gatekeeping for gatekeeping's sake and offers no harm to any players who'd actually enjoy counting out the difference between 450% and 475% damage, or +50 Bonus and +60 Bonus.

There exists a non-zero segment of the playerbase who can become frustrated or unwilling to engage with the combat when the game forces them to, and this is obviously not great when a quarter of all the game's releases are just combat and nothing else. I don't think it's unreasonable to say that this is in part due to the game never actually telling you what any attacks do, outside of not-always-helpful tooltips and the occasional flavor popup. Being frustrated because you were told 'Your foes end is nigh!' and nothing else, and having it not actually bring an end to foes who keep yelling about experiments while having wildly varying damage each turn, isn't unreasonable. Forcing people to look up what stuff actually does every time they equip a new class or fight a new monster is the kind of thing that can discourage players from engaging at all, or force them to ask for help when they already have the tools to do it on their own - we saw this with Pyromancer last year, with DeathKnight this year, and have seen obviously it with every new monster for the past four years including this very thread. Having any sort of increased transparency at all would decrease the reliance on people having to look stuff up every week, in turn making them more willing to learn or actually engage with the game.

This has very clearly been an accessibility issue to many players for a long time, and saying it shouldn't have been changed anyway because of 'spoonfeeding' is overly dismissive. Development practicality nonwithstanding, of course.

< Message edited by TFS -- 10/9/2021 18:05:30 >
DF  Post #: 15
10/9/2021 18:27:38   

It is a great quest, both Riftwalker and Ascendant can survive the gauntlet fairly easily.

< Message edited by DragonKeeper -- 10/9/2021 18:29:52 >
Post #: 16
10/9/2021 18:35:19   
Laeon val Observis

@TFS, while I am open to your perspectives on my views on how the GL should be despite it not meshing with my constructivistic leans and my ideals of "If you're waiting for the world to be kind to you, you're free to rage against it but not crab others into your follies," it still fails to answer the question of, "How willing are you to run complex calculations and read wall of texts in any combination in a hot zone, especially with the possibility of having not enough time for those?" The only numbers I would be concerned about would be HP thresholds. Damage? Hit probabilities? They're givens, and you just have to deal with the fallout if the odds swing out of your favor. Me at the least? I don't let the most of the time unlimited turn times dull urgencies and instincts honed from real time.

< Message edited by Laeon val Observis -- 10/9/2021 18:56:58 >
DF AQW  Post #: 17
10/10/2021 12:33:33   



This still begs the question of why exactly the Infernals and Celestials were imperfect beings. Was it simply because they no longer wished to follow the pattern that Draco and the Elements were supposed to follow?


Quite possibly. Maybe the Aequilibria envisioned them fighting each other due to their opposing natures, and became outraged when they discovered they were instead working together. Or maybe they already held discontent for their creators and formed the Alliance to better their chances of overcoming them. Who's to say how the conflict began and which party initiated it. As for why the Exalted were imperfect, it's not uncommon for stories and myths to feature gods who fail at their first attempt at creation and start anew. Perhaps the gods themselves are also imperfect?


This also begs the question as to what even caused them to die originally. The answer might lie in the Collection of Lorian songs, rhymes and other things that mentions two dragons going out to play under the "sun" and far away and only one of them returned when the Avatars called them back and then the last one remaining vanishing after it went to play under the "moon"[This also begs the question as to what even caused them to die originally. The answer might lie in the Collection of Lorian songs, rhymes and other things that mentions two dragons going out to play under the "sun" and far away and only one of them returned when the Avatars called them back and then the last one remaining vanishing after it went to play under the "moon"

I thought of that poem as well. I didn't think much of the "sun" and "moon" parts when I read it, but you might on to something with that connection to those scales in the Hatir and Dolaas bossfight. I didn't even consider that those might be connected. It would make sense that the sun and moon are symbolic of their respective duties.

And yes, Jaania is definitely WAAYY over her head in trying to weave herself into the Mana Core if my wacky theory is right. The list of all possible scenarios would be long, and none of them would be good. Not to mention Akanthus' Doom Boom...

Good heavens I hope Circe and Eirn stop that airship!

AQ DF MQ AQW  Post #: 18
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