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Dean12 Jul 20168430
Today, Orcs from all over the globe will be celebrating as their majesty Queen Bionka returns to the battlefield to support the Unchained. Players from the closed beta may recognise Bionka as “Ball and Chain” who appeared briefly in closed beta phase 1. Astute Orcs Must Die! fans may also remember her from Orcs Must Die! 2 where she was introduced in the “Family Ties” DLC.
Following the trend of other heroes who have returned to OMDU, she has been given the full re-design experience with a new set of abilities and skills. Similar to Bloodspike who works well being near to his minions, Bionka shares the benefit in a similar way but instead of feeding on their pain, the motherly Bionka supports her minions and gains up to 20% healing re-generation when around them. By singing a lullaby with her “shift” ability friendly minions reduce their damage taken as part of the damage is redirected to the queen herself. She also packs a wallop with her heavy mace which can be swing at enemies for wide area damage or slammed down for much larger damage in a more specific area. Her “E” ability, “BEAT DEM BACK” packs a major punch and allows Bionka to use her flail to knock-back enemies great distances. Your enemies will be in for a surprise, similar to Zoey’s “Book Bash”.
With her “Bionka Bounce” ability her weight comes to her advantage as she jumps in the air and lands on the ground causing nearby enemies to be thrown in the air, stunning them briefly. Great for setting up combos against minions or allowing others to finish off an enemy hero. This ability can be upgraded via weavers to for example, add damage.
Bionka is also equipped with an interesting glyph, the ‘Orcish Field Promotion” glyph. This is something different than what we have seen before. When placed this glyph upgrades any Orcs that pass over it to the next tier. For instance light orcs become medium orcs, and medium orcs become heavy orcs – a type of orc not otherwise available in PvP mode! The glyph has a limited number of promotions it can give before it disappears. It can be replaced, however. This is a good example of something a bit more different that can be achieved with glyphs.
Bionka overview video
To see more about Bionka’s redesign check out Nananea’s Bionka overview video below!
More more more…
Of course, Bionka isnt the only change coming in this patch, in usual Robot style its a jam-packed patch full of new content.
New survival Maps
5-star Skull system for survival maps
Remember those 5-skulls you could earn in previous OMD games for beating the level in par time without losing rift points? They make a return in OMDU in the form of the 5-skull system. Are you brave enough to try to 5-skull all the levels? Beware… 5-skulls might be harder than you think!
The first pass at a new guilds system is now in patch 1.3. Players can form groups of friends who can play together, chat and earn guild points which unlock special rewards.
With so much to see and do be sure to open you game client now and download this latest and greatest patch. See you in-game!Dean26 Jun 20168420
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!
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.Dean18 Jun 20168412
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.Dean12 Jun 20168396
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:
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
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.
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.
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!Dean05 Jun 20168389
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.
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!Dean03 Jun 20168356
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!
ScreenshotsDean31 May 20168340
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 brutal! You’ll be sure to want to catch up on the patch notes for this release. Here is a very quick summary:
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!
- 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.
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).