Posts

  • A look inside the Throne Room
    Dean
    8420

    Following on from ‘The Baths‘ the next new smaller survival map heading to Orcs Must Die! Unchained is the ‘Throne Room’. As revealed on last weeks Insider Access the Throne Room is home to one famous Orc in particular.. closed beta OMDU players may remember a playable hero Orc ‘Ball and Chain‘ who looks set to make a return next patch with her own survival map. It will be interesting to see what new things lay in wait  following her hero re-work. Fans should be sure to tune into this weeks Insider Access where details could well be revealed!

    Ball and Chain is set to make a return to OMDU soon.

    Her map not only features a throne room but also features a rather large swinging mace that can be triggered by both ranged and melee heroes by hitting a switch. When pressed the huge ball comes flying across the bridge, decimating any minions in its path.

    You can see more of the map including insider details from Paul Slusser about the art and its design speaking alongside Justin “SixOkay” Korthof on last weeks Insider Access shown below.

    The Baths – Classic OMD1 level making its way to Unchained!
    Dean
    8412

    In case you missed out on last weeks Insider Access, it has recently been revealed that the next survival map destined for OMDU will be a welcome return of an old favourite – “The Baths” from the original Orcs Must Die! This was an early level from act 1 and the level is split in two. It was the level where the famous Wind Belt was introduced.

    The level is now making a return in Orcs Must Die! Unchained as a smaller survival map aiming to bring back the feel of some of those smaller OMD maps from previous titles. The Baths has been given a visual overhaul for Unchained. Nananea has produced a 360 degree video so that you can explore how the level now looks in the spruced up new engine. Check it out below:

    And for more details on the the level including the reasons for bringing it back, check out the Insider Access with artist Paul Slusser below for the inside info. The Baths is one of a number of new Survival maps coming to Unchained which will pay homage to the smaller style maps from earlier games. There are plenty of survival maps in the works to fill up the survival level list from levels 0-100. The goal is to have as many diverse levels in their as possible, both big and small.

    What about Siege maps?

    Players who are craving more Siege maps should not fear, there are siege maps in the works. In order to accommodate the 5v5 players these maps have to be larger and take closely into account game balance and neutral objectives, understandbly these maps take longer to create as a result. Rest assured there are bots in the studio working on Siege maps and content to be on the lookout for news on these soon.

    Ian Fischer answers players questions on Reddit
    Dean
    8396

    Ian Fischer, Design Director at Robot, or as you may better know him as “Mother” has taken part in another Reddit AMA to answer fans burning questions! From Orcs Must Die! to the gaming industry there were plenty of questions asked and some very detailed answers in response. A couple of highlights:

    dkah41 asked:

    Love the franchise, having a ton of fun. Survival seems a ways behind Siege in terms of development, and the ‘account level’ focus for maps seems flawed as players end up passing over a lot of early content with no reason to go back (rewards/challenge aren’t there). Any plans for the following?

    • “achievement system” a la OMD2 (5-skull rating on a map)
    • “scaling down” so a L300 account can play a L30 map without blowing everything away
    Ian responds:

    Things are coming online for survival, piece at a time. I’ve mentioned before that we felt like we understood survival better, so we started with siege and then moved to survival. Survival still has a ways to go before we’d call it “done.”

    All three of the issues you mention are things we see as well. I’m not 100% certain what Six has announced or hinted at on these things already, so I can’t talk official specifics about them. However, I can say that, personally, un-officially, I think we really need a five-skull system, a way to downscale high level players so they can play games with lower level pals that are fun and rewarding, and an endgame that doesn’t involve three hour endless runs.

    (Wink wink.)

    It’s worth noting that the five star skull system is returning to OMDU in survival mode as a 5 star system as revealed in the last episode of Insider Access and todays email newsletter. You are subscribed to the newsletter, arent you?

    Another interesting question was asked by ElsakaS:

    Are there upcoming changes to the end-game of Siege mode? For me in the end-game if you places your traps very well and a good played defence, it’s sometimes impossible for the minions to get to the core.

    I had something in mind like reduced max traps, stronger minions or even that champions kills in some way decrease the points of the core.

    Ian responds:

    Yes. I’ve already mentioned some bits of this (like not being three hours long and not being 80+ only). That’s one angle — the basic system. We also feel like these maps could be more interesting with some gameplay / challenge changes and we’re working on some of that now too.

    Those players who have been advancing through the levels playing Siege can expect some interesting new content by the looks of things to shake things up.

    Be sure to check out the full AMA on Reddit for more inside scoop from Mother’s mind on OMDU and more via the link below. Essential reading!

    Ian Fischer’s Reddit AMA

    4th-Degree Burns – MikeLemmer’s Smolder Defense Guide
    Dean
    8389

    MikeLemmer on the Steam Forums has put together an outstandingly detailed guide on how to play defensively with Smolder. If you play with Smolder alot on either Survival or PvP or are thinking about playing some more with Smolder, this is THE guide you need to read.

    The guide goes into considerable details about Smolder, her abilities and weaver upgrades and when and what might be best to choose. The guide also discusses Smolder’s unique trap, the Naptha Sprayer and also some details about other fire traps like Brimstone – making note that Brimstone fire damage does NOT stack.

    Playing Smolder

    Smolder is “a melee character with a ranged attacker’s health”. Although she has ranged fireballs, her most damaging abilities all require her to get into the thick of things. To play her well, learn when to charge in and when to get out.

    Read the full guide

    You can read MikeLemmer’s full guide on how to play Smolder defensively over on the Steam forums via the link below. This really is a fantastic guide – be sure to check it out!

    http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=663286697

    Vaelkryeen’s awesome Orcs Must Die! Unchained screenshots
    Dean
    8356

    The artists at Robot Entertainment have done great work with Orcs Must Die! Unchained. Utilising the Unreal engine, OMDU is the best looking OMD game yet. With so much going on in fierce battles however you can sometimes miss out on some of the excellent environmental art in the game.

    Vaelkryeen from the OMDU EU community has taken the time to take screenshots of the level environmental design in OMDU so that we can take time to marvel at all the excellent work the bots at Robot’s art department have been doing. The screenshots look fantastic. A testament to the skill and artistic flair at Robot and also the keen eye of Vaelkryeen!

    A selection of his images can be found below. For full high-res and additional images check out Vaelkryeen’s post on the EU forums on the link below. They make for great background images too!

    http://board.omd.gameforge.com/index.php/Thread/3905-Hi-Res-In-Game-Screencaptures-by-Vaelkryeen/?

    Screenshots

    Patch 1.2 is LIVE for OMDU Open Beta
    Dean
    8340

    The latest patch for Orcs Must Die! Unchained open beta is now LIVE! Start your OMDU dashboard and the patch will begin to download. This patch contains a huuuge amount of changes including the return of Bloodspike the brutalYou’ll be sure to want to catch up on the patch notes for this release. Here is a very quick summary:

    • New Hero – Bloodspike. Great for Siege offensive play
    • Completely redesigned crafting system!
    • Survival mode has been completely re-balanced and fine tuned to feel more like classic OMD gameplay. Minions move faster and take more damage. There is also a brand new map too - Banquet Hall.
    • Unchained Fortress has a number of changes including re-positioned war camps and boss changes.
    • Surival traps now have 7 tiers of upgrades.
    This is just scratching the surface. Delve into the full patch notes to be fully in the know of all the changes. Or tune into Doug and Laura on Insider Access to get all the scoop on the VOD below!

    Watch live video from OrcsMustDie on www.twitch.tv

    Crafting Changes

    As part of the goal to simply crafting and the game meta following from fan feedback, the number of in-game materials has been reduced from around 20 to 10. This means some materials are being retired, but don’t worry – you’ll see these being returned to you in the form of other materials. The graphic below explains what will happen. (Click to enlarge).

    Click to enlarge

    Bloodspike ‘The Brutal’ making his return to OMDU
    Dean
    8323

    Bloodspike is making a return to Orcs Must Die! Unchained in the next open beta patch. Bloodspike has long been on fans wishlist to make a return to OMDU following his removal at the end of closed beta phase 1. Having appeared in the most recent OMDU trailer he is now back in the fray following a comprehensive redesign.

    Meals meals meals

    They don’t call Bloodspike “The Brutal” for nothing, he has an interesting new passive ability which demonstrates his sheer brutality. He is able to attack and kill his own friendly minions, when he does he is able to consume them as delicious meals which can then be used to restore Bloodspikes HP. Think of it as sacrifices for the greater good. This sounds like an interesting mechanic and could be interesting in turning the tide of battle utilising Bloodspike to push instead of a sacrificed minion lost through his bloodhungry passive.

    Another interesting mechanic surrounding sacrificing your own minions – he has another ability called “Bloodbath“. This melee attack makes up his secondary ability . The more enemies (or allies) that Bloodspike hits, the faster he can power up all of his other abilities. This works in a stacking system similar to Oziel’s souls. Bloodspike gains  8% per stack – up to +80% bonus damage. Unlike Oziel however, Bloodspike’s stacks timeout over time so players need to keep an eye on his stacks to make sure they are getting the best out of Bloodspike at any one time, or if he needs a break to feast on some of those delicious meals.

    Powerful Attacks

    As a melee hero, Bloodspike wields two mighty axes, delightfully named ‘Bridget’ and ‘Delilah’ take turns as they can be used to slay enemy (or indeed, friendly) minions. Each hit that these axes makes also serves a secondary purpose – lowering the cool-down an Bloodspike’s E ability – Maiming Blow - A double-axe melee attack that deals damage and slows proportional to enemy hero HPs. Low HP heroes are dealt high damage but slightly slowed. High HP heroes are dealt low damage and significantly slowed.

    Inspirational

    The Unchained can always do with a little bit of encouragement on the battle field – especially those Orcs. Luckily with Bloodspike around confidence is greatly boosted via his Inspiring Frenzy shift ability. When pressed Bloodspike calls out to his minions in close proximity, empowering them with increased attack and movement speed and temporary HPs.

    If this isn’t enough to wet your brutality appetite you can also check out Nananea’s excellent hero overview video below to see Bloodspike in action!

    Hero Overview Video

    You can also find out more about the design process for Bloodspike by reading Paul Hellquist’s blog on the Orcs Must Die! website via the link below which makes for interesting reading.

    https://na.orcsmustdie.com/#!/en/blog/prepare-to-be-brutal

    Be on the lookout for Bloodspike next OMDU patch – date TBC!