34 - Volume 4: A Closer Look At Interface Improvements

A Closer Look at...The Interface and Mounts

Allods Online is going live into the mmorpg world very, very soon, and because of that we're bringing back our 'A Closer Look At....' series to give Sarnautians, new and old, a glimpse of what is to come in this new update. In the coming weeks we'll have focuses on newly discovered allods, new adventures in the astral, new skills, new features, a new world in Kirah, and a new start for the entire game! Today we'll start our previews with a look at updates for the interface, the changes made to mounts, but first a look at one of the most eagerly anticipated add-ons to Allods Online, the mini-map!

The mini-map is one of the most useful additions to the game for all players, from Evermeet Isle to Gipat it can be helpful for players running to take their next quest. By pressing 'Shift+M' the map will appear in the left of the screen, showing your position, the surrounding area and also where your next quest can be found. The mini-map can be turned on and off, re-sized to whatever you wish, dragged to whatever part of the screen you prefer, and also made as transparent as you'd like, it's entirely up to you how you view this new feature, or whether you even view it at all! You can also zoom in and out of your location to check even further what is in your area.

Every update of Allods Online has sought to bring improvements to how you view and use the game, both for old players and new players alike. In Volume 3 we looked at making the interface more user friendly. With Volume 4 we have looked to expand on that by tweaking those things that will affect every user, from level 1 onwards. The interface is now improved from the opening character creation screen, as we have included a zoom option when setting up new characters, and also included a player control guide for those new to the game.

The new chat interface now offers three channels instead of two, allowing you greater choice on what you see in-game, and what you want people to hear. This will be particularly useful when in a party or raid and it isn't the right time to hear about someone selling a costume back in your capital city! You will now be able to keep general Zone, World and Say chat in your General chat tab, with all Guild, Raid and Party chat going into the new Allies tab. The Allies tab will give you a list that allows you to choose who you can see in this chatbox. The list allows you to turn on/off your Party, Raid, Guild and Officiers chat function. So if you are in a cross-guild raid, and you wish to blank out other members of your guild that aren't involved, you simply uncheck Guild on the list. Doing this would still leave you in communication with the officiers of your guild as well, so you won't miss any announcements when on your raid. The Combat tab will continue to log your combat actions, so you can look back at the end of raids at the moves that won you new equipment with pride! There has also been a button added above the chatbox that allows you to set your character's mood, this can be changed or turned off altogether.

The new update is bringing lots of new content to Allods Online, and so we felt it was also necessary to update the Calendar screen, to highlight the new quests and increase ease of use. The four main tabs of Recommended, Daily, Other and Repeatable remain, but we have changed how you can view these. In the image below you will see that the Search function now allows you to search quests based in differing zones. This will allow you to pinpoint where you need to be, and at what time, more accurately. Added to this the quests for the zone you are currently in will be highlight in green on your calendar, so if you are wandering through Sarnaut on your adventures you can check to see what is happening wherever you are. The Current Time in the top right-hand corner now displays the date as well, just in-case you need help remembering if you need to be in work or at home! Don't worry if you don't recognise the names of some of the quests below either, we'll have plenty of information on them coming soon!

In a future Closer Look At....we will look at the new skills coming to Allods Online with the full release of Volume 4. New abilities bring new opportunities in the game, but it also brings a new design for the Talent Tree, and a new feature for the Spellbook. The Talent Tree is now more organised, with links from learnt spells that will unlock new abilities for your character. We will have more information on these new abilities in an upcoming 'Closer Look At', but from the images below you will see the changes that have been made, and the slots that need to be unlocked to discover the new abilities. We have kept the four main tabs to navigate between the Talent Tree and the three separate Talent Grids. Further from these changes, we have also added a new Family section to the spellbook. Here you will find the three abilities you learn upon marrying another character, these abilities can directly affect how you survive your adventures in Sarnaut, both in the present, and in the past:

To compliment this we have added a new feature to help track your quests, and organise your day in Sarnaut better. In the top right of your screen you now have three options for managing your quests. The first lets you highlight those quests that have been completed by marking them green. The second option will list all quests currently activated by you in your current zone, whilst the third will give you the option of turning the Quest Tracker off. Speaking of quests, one of the most important changes coming to Allods Online, with the live launch, is the new Draconic Aspect of the game, which unlocks new abilities, and also a second set of equipment. How you get this, where you get this from, and who gives you the quest to enable you to get this, will be dealt with in detail in a future focus. For now we'll show you an image of how the character interface looks, once you have unlocked this Draconic Aspect:

The way you will use, and make, runes has also received an update. We will look at this new system in more depth in a coming focus. This will cover how you will now weld runes, and how they will now operate with your character, instead of your equipment. What we can show you today is the screen you will get when you click on your patron's symbol in the regular avatar interface. It shows your own stats, how the runes you have equipped are affecting them, what level of rune you have in and what percentage of strength your character is now at. As we said, we will go into this in more detail in a future 'A Closer Look At....', for now here is what that screen will look like:

Almost as important as the new Draconic Relics are the changes we have made to the mount system. We have introduced new mount skins, added a new stable, and made managing all these new mounts even easier than before. If you look at the sample images from below you will see that the new Mount stable has numerous slots for your mounts, some unlocked when you enter the game for the first time, some that need to be unlocked as you progress through your Sarnaut life. However the main new feature now comes with differing skins available for the different mounts. As you can see, you can preview each of these skins before deciding who you want to mount up to take you into your adventures. Not only that but as you unlock these skins you can free up a main space in your stable by dismissing the mount. This means, for example, that you just need to keep one Stallion in your stable, not one for each different skin, and that you will also just need to feed this one mount as well! This saves you time, and also cuts back on the amount of mount food you will need to use! This not only works for the Stallion, but also for the lion, wolf and whatever other mounts you may find in the new update......

That wraps up our focus on the interface changes coming soon to Allods Online. In the coming weeks we'll be preparing for the launch by offering you more in-depth guides to all the new features you'll be seeing soon. These include new astral layers, an updated look at Sarnautian lore, the brand new rune system and how it works, the mystery that is Draconic Relics, new allods and, of course, more information on Kirah. Be sure to check these out so you can understand more of why sometimes your faction's future can depend on what happens in it's past!