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  • iamacyborg



    The very generous folks at Frostkeep have given us another 5 pre-alpha keys to give out to lucky forum members.

    I've had a lot of feedback from community members who are eager to get into the pre-alpha test phase so to keep things fair, we'll be running this on a pure RNG basis, with the contest ending and winners being picked by random number generator on Thursday 27th April at 8pm (UK time).

    Want a chance to win? Simple, all you need to do is register an account on the forums. Already got an account? No problem, you'll automatically be submitted for a chance to win.



    • Anyone with a forum account, excepting previous forum contest winners will be eligible for entry
    • Anyone caught making multiple accounts will be banned from this and all future contests

    Winners will be notified privately upon completion of the contest via pm on the forums. 


    PS: There's another giveaway on the Rend Discord channel, ending at 7pm EST today (25/04/17), please join Discord for details.


    We've got some kickarse community members here at Rend Forums, specifically @Yamakasi and @Roque Kazin who've put together some awesome guides for players looking to start getting into Rend (once the pre-alpha opens up a little more of course)

    To start with, we've got an awesome overview of the Character Creation process:

    Not forgetting guides on the Skill System:

    The Mount System:

    And last but by no means least, a guide on how to cut wood, one of the first things you'll want to do upon entering the world of Rend for the first time.

    Any Rend Forum member can access and creates guides in the Guides section of the site, what's more, Guides are built as collaborative articles that anyone can contribute to, simply hit the big gold Edit button on a guide page.

    I've got a ton more features planned to make this the best Rend resource on the net, please let me know if you've got any questions, suggestions or concerns!


    Checks your PM's folks, 5 lucky winners have just been sent their alpha keys :)

    For those of you who signed up but didn't win, please stick around, we're working on turning this into the best Rend community website out there, and we'll be sure to have more contests in the future!


    The lovely folks at Frostkeep (I'm looking at you @FK_JarNod) have very generously granted us 5 alpha keys for 5 lucky winners. We'll be running a random draw at 9am (UK time) tomorrow morning. That's 9am on 21/04/17.

    So what do you need to do to become one of those lucky winners?

    Well all you need to do is register for a forum account.

    Already got an account? Cool, you're already included in the draw, so you don't need to do anything other than cross your fingers.

    Good luck!


    Some lucky members of the community had their dreams come true earlier today with an invite to the alpha test from the folks at Frostkeep.

    If you're one of the lucky ones, why not start sharing your impressions in the dedicated Alpha Testing subforum?

    Not one of the lucky ones? Make sure you're signed up with an account here, we might have a surprise for you ;)



    The most excellent @FK_JarNod just posted a new blog post over on the Frostkeep website, you should go check it out.

    In case you're feeling lazy, you can also read it below, but definitely go check it out on their site too!


    Well, finalizing that content schedule took longer than we expected, but now that we have, expect more consistent updates leading to early access launch and beyond! For this specific post, to make sure that we start off on the right foot again, I’m going to look at Rend from a high level, as well as answer a few questions I’ve seen pop up on social media and other places.

    So, let’s talk about Rend. How did we come up with this game for our first game as a new studio? Well, we wanted to make a game we were all excited about, and since we had all been playing survival games before we started the company, it seemed like a logical step. Similar to how Mat, Jeremy, and Solomon approached the MMO genre back when they were helping create World of Warcraft, we took a hard look at why survival games were so much fun, and where they lost their luster. Here’s a few things that we found:

    1. Survival games promise a great war. Everyone builds their base after starting from nothing, and slowly increase in power until they can knock off a neighbor (whether by alliance or destruction) until they’re the biggest baddest tribe on the server. Unfortunately, what ends up happening is you and a couple of buddies build up a base, make sure it’s fortified, and log off for the night. At 4:00 in the morning, another tribe logs in, sees your undefended base, and proceeds to break it open and take all your hard earned loot. When we raided other tribes like that, we left unsatisfied. When we got raided like that, we didn’t feel like starting the grind all over again. We all tasted that tantalizing battle, but only experienced it very rarely. We knew we had to design to provide that war to the player.
    2. The only way to prevent your base from being destroyed while you are offline is to join the biggest baddest guild on the server. No one would dare raid your base now! Well that’s true, instead everyone that isn’t in the biggest baddest guild ends up leaving the server causing you to be stuck there with no one to fight. We knew we had to design balance into the game.



      An example base made by some of our friends and family testers

    To solve the second one first, we decided to have the player choose a faction when they create a character on a server for the first time. By only allowing a maximum number of players (currently 20, but will be a server setting) per faction online at a time, we could guarantee that the factions would be equal. When you login, you’ll be joining your faction’s community immediately. You’re not trying to survive alone with no guidance. You’re trying to survive with and for each other.

    But we still hadn’t solved the first discovery. While we were trying to solve that, we played a great game called Kingdom: New Lands (or Kingdom: Classic). In it, you play as a princess who must collect resources to grow her kingdom to survive demon hordes. The idea was perfect for a faction survival game like ours. Every week at a set time (or more often depending on the server), monsters could attack the base that the faction had created. Well, why didn’t we just use that for attacking players too? And thus our idea for the Reckoning was born. The Reckoning is a set time where every faction’s protected shields drop and waves of lost ones attack each base attempting to destroy the Divinity Stone, i.e. the source of the faction’s power. The waves will only last a percentage of the total length of the Reckoning. Your shields will stay down after the Lost Ones are driven back, and what you do with your time during that is up to you. Everyone’s base is unprotected, which means the great war is possible and is happening.

    With those three core game designs (survival, factions, The Reckoning), we were excited about building a game around them. Suddenly possibilities for expanding the game came flooding into the office from all of us. “Why don’t we add a skill system? You know, like Ultima Online!” So, we built a skill system. Every task that a player does will help them get better at said tasks. So if you enjoy mining, you’ll get better at mining. If you enjoy PvP, you’ll get better at PvP. If you like deep dives, you’ll get better at … I’m being told that I’m spending too much time on a system we’ll have a blogpost for later. I just wanted to give you all a taste on our process and how Rend came about.

    On a final note, I want to discuss a little bit about why we decided to launch in early access. Ultimately, it was because we wanted the community and the players to have a say in what Rend will be. We built this company so that the best idea wins out, and that means it doesn’t matter where it comes from. We’ve already gotten suggestions for new systems from the Rend fan discord and on the Rend fan forums. We’ve even already implemented systems that answer those suggestions! As the saying goes, thousands of heads are better than five. So come join us in this wild adventure. It’ll be fantastic.


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    • Was interesting to watch and leads to more questions than answers (for someone who hasn't played).  Curious to see the game in the fall and see what has changed since.  This video also shows factions are a great idea but hardly a cure all and can actually lead to just as lopsided PVP as any other survival game.
    • Almost forgot to post it here! Got a highlight and (a lot of) footage of an intense raid on Revenant base during the alpha test in May. Some people streamed it, but it's all since gone from Twitch. Enjoy!  
    • RU: https://vk.com/frostkeep?w=page-142823387_53158011
    • Continuing from the last Meet the FK'ers with Jordan Leithart, we've got a brief chat with Frostkeep co-founder Jeremy Wood. Check it out below.   RF: What's your name and what do you do at Frostkeep? JW: Jeremy Wood, Co-Founder   RF: Tell us a little about your backstory, where have you worked prior to joining Frostkeep, what games have you been involved in making? JW: I got my start as an engineer on the original World of Warcraft team back in 2001. After seven years and two expansions, I moved onto Titan, which eventually became Overwatch. In 2012, I joined Carbine to work on WildStar, until forming Frostkeep in 2016.   RF: What game most influenced you? Was it something in your childhood or in later years? JW: I play a wide variety of games, PC and console, as many as I can get my hands on. I feel that there is something to learn from every single game, and the more I play, the better I am able to contribute to the games I work on. World of Warcraft is probably my single biggest influence, and probably the game I've sunk the most time into over the years.   RF: What are you main influences in your work? Is there anything outside of the gaming world you feel has helped you become a better developer? Being a successful game developer is mostly about effective two-way communication. I am always looking to better myself from that standpoint, and I've been incredibly fortunate to learn from many amazing people, both professionally and personally. Understanding human psychology provides great tools for communication, as well as for game design in general. Game developers tend to focus so much on "fun", which is ultimately impossible to quantify. Really boiling down the psychological impact of content and systems is a more objective way of measuring the success of your designs.   RF: There have been a lot of Early Access Survival games released over the last few years, what do you think makes Rend stand out from the rest of them? JW: The biggest things we've tried to do with Rend is provide social structure for those who come in alone or in small groups, and to really give strong competitive goals to all players. Most survival games rely entirely on their sandbox elements, which is obviously enough for a large section of players.  Our aim is to bring some structure to the genre and attract a wider swath of players to this rich and interesting survival community.   RF: The team have been pretty fantastic at engaging with the community so far, is that something you feel is a real differentiator between Frostkeep and your competition? JW: One of our goals as a company has always been to be "real", cliched as that may be. We are gamers just like everyone else in our community, and we engage with them as gamers first, not as developers. We are all creating Rend together, even if Frostkeep is ultimately making the decisions and building the game. We want to be human beings, rather than faceless PR bots, and that means sharing in our failures and our successes, and ultimately being honest with the community about the realities of game development.   RF: Being with such a small team, what benefits do you feel you have against working in a traditional AAA studio? What do you miss from previous work? JW: Our size allows us to have a highly collaborative work environment, in a way that would be difficult in a larger team setting. We all sit in one room, working together on every problem. Everyone's voice is heard and given equal objective weight. We can quickly pivot on new ideas without hours and days of meetings. The downside, of course, is limited resources. We have to be very conscious of our direction, and make sure that we have the capability of delivering on our goals.   RF: What's next after Early Access, are there any extra features you'd love to implement in Rend? JW: We come from a MMO background, where launch is just the beginning, and Rend will be no different in that regard. During Early Access, we will be adding tons of content and features, working with the community to grow the game into a full and satisfying product. When we think we have come to a point where Rend is truly a complete game experience, we will lift the Early Access tag. After that, we will take stock and see where Rend should go, whether that be new maps, new game modes, etc.   RF: And finally, which aspect of Rend are you most excited for players to get to experience? JW: The Reckoning, even in its early state, has been a blast. Experiencing a true war, where all sides are present attacking and defending, really epitomizes the fantasy that draws most people to the survival genre.
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    • A few exciting things happened over the past few weeks that I didn’t mention before because we were getting ready for and talking about PAX. The first is that we hired two more developers at Frostkeep Studios! Don’t worry, we’ll get headshots and a new team page as soon as we get a better camera. Without further ado, here are the bios of our two new FKers! Jake Strapko
      Jake is known for breaking game mechanics in Rend and exploiting them to his advantage, in that order. With a lifetime of experience in competitive gaming, Jake grew up in a household where LAN parties were the norm. He competed against his brother and father in popular online games like Quake, Command: Modern Air Naval Operations and Conquer Online before eventually shifting his reserves to focus on Counter-Strike. Jake is formally trained in graphic design, product branding and apparel design, and has also ventured into competitive teams with Counter-Strike 1.5 and playing on multiple tournament teams during the Overwatch Beta where he was one of the top 500 players for Seasons 1 and 2. As one of the most active players in the Rend pre-alpha, Jake can be found streaming on Twitch and helping to build game communities. His focus at Frostkeep will be on making Rend as fair and balanced as possible. Michele Cagle
      Known for “making lemonade” and finding the good in everything (as Bob Ross would say, “there are no mistakes, just happy accidents”), Michele Cagle is a seasoned communications executive with nearly 20 years of gaming, corporate, entertainment and consumer products experience. Michele previously led global communications efforts at Sony Online Entertainment, Daybreak Games, THQ and Mattel, including corporate communications, brand PR, internal communications, influencer relations and events. When she’s not off saving animals or channeling her inner Bruce Lee to execute awesome campaigns, Michele can be found chasing sunsets, eating mangos, and getting salty with her family at local beaches on the mainland and in Hawaii. The next thing that happened was that we were put on Tech Raptor’s top 10 games at PAX West! This was a huge surprise and an incredible honor, especially when looking at the other games on that list (Dead Cells is sooooo good). We’re so excited to show off the game, and can’t wait to open up the pre-alpha servers again. As far as happenings around the office, I’m still plugging away at the UI rework (we’ll get another UI blog later). Tyler and Ron are working on AI and Item system design. Jake is doing some super secret work as well as focus testing and balance design. James is working on new prop items. Travis and Mat are working on making the map bigger and all the cool new biomes. David is working on some performance things regarding base building. As always we’re here answering questions from the community on Twitter, Facebook, Steam and the community Discord! Come join us! read the original article
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