was a busy month with a lot of news including
the addition of races to the world of Fortitude,
more lore released and some images of buildings
and scenery in game. I hope you will agree the
game is progressing quickly now! But news doesn't
stop there and May is certain to be just as
busy with the E3 Games Expo in Los Angeles,
movie and lore releases and who knows what else!
But first, read on for an important announcement.
We never tire of announcing big pieces of news
so here is some more. In addition to adding
races to the game we have added a loose class
system where there are five classes for each
race, a total of 15 classes altogether. I know
this will be a surprise to many of you but we
believe our reasons for this change are sound,
so let me explain them to you.
in considering a classless system we decided
it would be too easy with our skills system
(a total of 30 skills split between primary
and secondary categories) to have players produce
ineffective 'gimped' characters. Looking at
the problem we saw we could stop that by heavily
limiting player choice or through slowing progression
so most character choices were made late when
the player was more experienced. Neither of
those options particularly appealed to us as
they clearly have drawbacks.
second problem was we felt players would tend
towards a best-fit skills template, so called
'min-maxing' that would see maybe 3 or 4 different
types of characters dominate with many skills
and character templates left ignored. The only
way of avoiding this would be through the finest
balancing of skills to ensure all skills were
totally equal and as we know this is almost
instead we have devised a system whereby your
character chooses a class which provides you
with a selection of skills you can chose to
level to varying degrees. Which skills (of three)
you chose as a primary (you get the others as
back-ups as your character develops) and to
what rank you take each of the secondary skills
is up to you, providing you with your own unique
character while still having a character of
a certain style.
we are happy with the higher level aspects of
our class system, there is still room for feedback
and alteration which we will gather from the
forums and our beta testers.
can discuss the classes here
will release a full skills list soon.
An attack magician who also can use magical bows, the
scholar is able to lead from the front and can use conjuring
or necromantic curses. The scholar mixes a wide range
of magical styles into one potent package.
Skilled with one handed and thrown weapons as well
as enhancement magic, the healer is a specialist in
healing, curing and reanimating the dead. The healer
is a perfect addition to any team needing backup!
Use of magical bows comes naturally to this class
as do powerful magical enhancements and curses. The
enchanter is an excellent support caster!
The night mage specialises in deception and is capable
with throwing weapons and illusionary magics. The
Night Mage can also use simple healing spells when
required and makes an excellent support or stand alone
The Skirmisher's skill with both normal and magical
bows makes them strong at range against single targets
or groups. At the same time their vision enhancement,
leadership and shield skills make them important to
any battle group.
A good fighter capable of using a variety of melee
weapons while also having enhancement and some healing
skill. The disciple can fight as ably as most and
has magical abilities useful to the whole group.
Capable of fighting in close or using thrown weapons,
the Raider can inspire their team with their leadership
skill and calls to battle. The Raider's group enhancements
make them a powerful addition to any team.
The duellist can fight both up close and at range
and is also excellent with a shield. The duellist
provides a strong first-strike ability with the great
melee survivability to Dragonbloods.
The Hunter prefers to keep their foe safely at range
preferring the use of thrown weapons and bows. Should
the Hunter need to get close their rouse skill and
ability to curse always keeps their enemies on the
All close combat weapons are favoured by this class
with additional leadership and shield skills providing
them with a further close combat edge. The Gladiator
is a powerful front line fighter of the Dragonbloods.
Able to deal damage, summon, conjure, curse and cast
enhancements, the Conjurer is an excellent support
caster with well rounded abilities, an asset to any
Adept with one handed weapons and bows, the Shadow
Warrior can also use illusion and enchantments to
deceive their foe while using leadership to inspire
their team. The Shadow Warrior is the strongest fighter
of the Shadow classes.
Skilled with direct damage magic and throwing weapons
the Shadow Mage can also turn their hand to skills
such as illusion to make their getaway. The shadow
mage makes an excellent assassin of both animals and
Bows, enchanted bows and small one handed weapons
are the Scout's weapons of choice with concealment
and vision enhancement making it an excellent hit
and run fighter. Should they need to close in for
the kill the Scout's shield skill provides it with
Bows, throwing weapons and small one-handed weapons
are the tools of choice for this class. The Miscreant
can also use curses, illusion and conjuration to trick
and fool their opponent, truly a class for the most
malevolent of players.
for beta starting are just about on schedule. However,
due to contract negotiations taking longer than expected
Beta 0 will now not start till June. Beta 0 will be
very small, probably around 100 people. We intend
to start very simple with just basic movement and
combat systems in place - no progression or high level
game play. This will be rolled out as the whole beta
system proves itself. After we have established stability
and we have all the systems to handle bug reports
and feedback we will start to add more testers and
features. We estimate Beta 0 will last at least one
of the week
wasteland can be beautiful!
I understand that many of you may be interested
in the politics of Fortitude (as indeed
many of you may not). To satiate the desires
of those political animals among your ranks
I present a speech made by Reed, a leading
member of a Bird Empire clan (and opponent
of a close personal friend of mine at the
time) who gave this speech some twenty years
ago when looking to be elected into its
upper chambers... more
9 - Dev diary
12th to 19th May - E3 attendance for Codemasters staff.
14th to 16th - E3 Expo
Friday 16th - 2nd Newsletter of the month (may be
delayed by E3)
Friday 23rd - Dev diary
Monday 26 - Dev Chat
- The two Stratics House of Commons DE chats were
well attended on Monday, you can read the logs of
- Heltak interviews
Calistas on lore and skills.
fan site has had a face lift and has had significantly
added to the clan database and management options.
Create business cards, manage inter-clan relationships
and run a message board.
- Toby Eglesfield, our Principle Artist, has left
for New Zeeland with his wife. Here
is his good-bye dev diary.
- Moonshade interviews Calistas on the new
- PC Gameworld interviews
- IGN RPG Vault has a Q&A
on races posted.
- Mark Zechiel took part in IGN RPG Vault's developer
RPG Dot tell me they have compiled a great articles
database Dragon Empires and have collected
more than 160 news bits going back to November 2001!
site of the week
Last time the link for the Dragon Empires 3D Fansite
was incorrect, the correct link is http://www.iguanagodesign.com/DragonEmpire/
Sorry for any confusion caused. The 3D Fansite is
about to run a new event, check out the site for more
Forum post of the week
I have started a thread on game
characters where we're looking for people
to post images that show off a look or style they
particularly enjoyed from other games. Go post if
you have an opinion on game characters!