Happy Holidays everyone!
We trust that all of you in America and elsewhere who celebrate Thanksgiving had or are having a wonderful time with friends, family, and food!
The studio was heads down and very busy this month working on future plans alongside existing development of Chronicles of Elyria and other associated projects. But that doesn't mean it was totally quiet in November. In this month's Community Journal, we go over all that occurred last month and share some interviews and monthly content these CJ's have become famous for.
Without further delay, let's dive in!
A look back:
- The first shiny we shared this month was that of a previously unreleased monstrous creature from the biome that is primarily home to Janoa tribe. Feast your eyes on the WIP mesh sculpt of the Sailfin!
- Our next share this month was architecture that a ton of community members had asked us about for quite some time. In case you missed them, take a look at these stunning Kypiq architectural concept sketches from Heat. They really do know how to take advantage of all of their environment!
- During the 2019 Kickstarter-versary, we hosted a contest that sought imagery or background stories about your domains, and the community didn't disappoint! Over 200 entries were submitted, and after a period of reviewing and judging, the final winners were announced. Set to receive a special monument for their settlement tied to their submission, view all of the winners from each server in this announcement post.
- For our 3rd shiny, Snipehunter shared this lengthy video highlighting efforts the team has made this month on certain aspects of the Prelyria client. Check out the video here.
- Not a team to ignore the festive holidays & spirit of the season, we just announced our very first Longest Night Calendar to commemorate this Elyrian occurrence. We hope you enjoy all that it has to offer, and Season’s Greetings!
- Our final shiny is a literal menagerie of Elyrian animal sketches from the tropical wetlands. Take a look and let us know what you spy in the image!
Now, onto the rest of this month's CJ.
Last month, we highlighted an important sticky post with many years of valuable links that had been updated. We felt it prudent to remind you a 2nd time in case you missed it.
Check out the recently updated Read First and FAQs sticky.
Discord Server Boosts
This feature provided by Discord gives server communities more perks to spruce things up and share their love for their favorite(s) server(s).
You can learn about the benefits the varied levels of Server Boosts provide at the link above, and since you can only choose 1 or 2 servers to dedicate your love towards (depending on your Nitro benefits), we'd like to thank the following members whose boosts helped us gain or maintain our perks in November!
Note: Boosts verified on November 27th, 2019 at 11:52am pacific time.
Thank you very much to all of our boosters!
We consistently review surname reservations on a weekly basis. Each month, we like to share a few from the past period that caught our eye.
Here are some samples of some faves and declines:
Random declined surnames:
- The Gray-Haired
- The Horned
- The Fifth
- Da Vinci
Most attempted surnames: Names made famous by Dragon Age, Warhammer, Wheel of Time, and Tolkien.
Domain name reservations
We consistently review domain name submissions now that D&SS is underway. Here are some examples of ones that were declined and a few of our favorites.
Random declined domain names:
Random notable domain names:
- Mimklarth Onnon
- Nyeave Faodale
- Meirzo Becarzan
- Kakusareta Sanson
- Dunfort Gealai Airgid
- Tarian Fawr
About name reviews
Aside from resubmits and the daily trickle of new submissions, we're proud to announce that more than 6500 total domain name reservations from D&SS and almost 1000 surnames submitted during the same period have all been reviewed! Thank you to all of my teammates who helped make this possible. From here on out, we expect our SLA to be adhered to for most normal future submissions. If you have any questions about any name submissions, please email us at support.
Each month, we'll spotlight a few random memes that were shared via the forums, Discord, or Reddit.
Baron Saye (Tyria NA-W) seems concerned about the real estate market after launch:
(EU) Sparrow, after hearing about the name review backlog last month, had this speculation to share:
Thanks for sharing everyone! These made us laugh :joy:
If you'd like to see your meme highlighted, share it with us in our Discord, forums, or our subreddit, and it may show up here one day!
Ask a Dev
A new column in the Community Journal, this section will highlight and provide answers to interesting questions submitted to us by the community.
Here are two questions submitted to the form below that we wanted to answer today:
Q1: "I would appreciate the knowing of heavy armor-based gear, would it cause a hindrance on climbing on walls in caves as provided in one of your videos. How much would it block via damage scaling? Thanks in advance."
A1: "In all fairness, we could continue to make changes to the damage model of Chronicles of Elyria, but as it stands today, the biggest drawback to “heavy” armor (e.g. plate mail or even heavy chainmail or something similar) is its weight and the impact of carrying that weight on mobility. As you move through the world, you’ll find you're unable to produce the sort of top-speed movement that you could accomplish without the armor. At the same time, the energy cost of performing certain actions increases. Finally, your body has less ability to well-regulate its internal temperature, which could impact your survival in extreme environments. However, in exchange for that, you gain the ability to “soak” (absorb or otherwise mitigate) a large amount of the energy of physical attacks that strike your armor, preventing that damage from making its way to your character itself."
"However, armor doesn’t mitigate damage via damage scaling, exactly. Instead, every piece of armor can absorb a certain amount of damage per strike, converting that absorbed damage into degradation of the condition of the armor. Any damage that the armor cannot absorb is then passed onto the wearer. If the armor’s condition is degraded severely enough, it will break and provide no benefits until it is repaired. If its condition reaches 0 the armor is destroyed and must be recycled into new armor, as it is then beyond repair."
Cetola had this question for our devs:
Q2: "Would a miner use a pickaxe mining and killing, or would you have to carry something else for the killing part? Also, could you put a blade on the end of a pickaxe to stab with?"
The response Snipehunter provided is:
A2: "A miner could absolutely use a pickaxe as a weapon if they felt the need! In Chronicles of Elyria, anything you can pick up and securely hold in your hand can be used as a weapon, whether you have training to use the weapon or not. However, without training in a specific martial art that can utilize a weapon of the same type as your pickaxe, you may only be able to swing wildly with it. Essentially, everyone can use things laying around in the world as “improvised melee weapons” – but to use the special combat moves of a martial art, you must use a compatible weapon. Though, there are many “improvised” weapons (like the pickaxe) that are “compatible” with various martial arts styles (The pickaxe can be used as a cheap stand-in for a war hammer, if I recall correctly). For example, a sword style meant for use with short sword, can also be used with short poles or similarly shaped objects."
If you would like to submit a question for the Ask a Dev column in hopes it will get answered in a future Community Journal, use this form.
(Formerly the Meet a Mod column)
Our volunteer Moderators are not only bastions of peace in our community; they are a helpful hand whenever you need assistance.
They are very knowledgeable about Chronicles of Elyria and provide valuable feedback that helps keep our community amazing.
Each month in the past, we provided a little insight into who they are and what makes them tick.
All current moderators have been interviewed, look to previous Community Journals to learn more about them!
More about Mods
As you may already know, our volunteer Moderators and Super Moderators spend countless, often tedious hours supporting and helping the community to ensure peace and happiness across all of our platforms.
In November, we deployed our very own Soulbot, version 3.0, after weeks of testing. Having grown tired of issues and the fallibility of our former attempts with Utilibot and then Dyno, we finally made our own that does everything we need and more! Thanks to the team for their efforts in testing and assisting in getting this live in our Discord server.
If you want to talk to a Moderator, you can find them in the forums with a Moderator title, or in our official Discord server in purple (Moderator) and gold (Super Moderator).
Becoming a mod:
If you have an interest in becoming a Moderator for our team, please, don't call us, we'll call you! There is no application process; we constantly seek out capable, kind, considerate, helpful, and supportive individuals who have a reputation in the community of being upstanding players who are honest and have integrity. If that sounds like you, and you are present in our community, keep up the efforts! We'll find you!
Meet an Organization
Each month we spotlight an organization from our community.
We have many creative members who are building amazing groups in Elyria, and this is one way we can help bring them to your attention.
Today, we introduce you to the The Hegemony of Greater Brineia, shared with us by Count Roderick Sturm, Lord Steward of Tyria.
Official Organization name: The Hegemony of Greater Brineia
Server: Angelica (NA-W)
Kingdom affiliation: Tyria
How did you form? "The Hegemony of greater Brineia was initially founded on a partnership between Count Roderick Sturm and Countess Alia Obic to ensure mutual success in the Northern regions of the desert. The agreement gradually evolved into a large state sponsored trade organization aiming to make the region prosperous and a major part of Tyrian economics. Various businesses, mercenary groups, manufacturing, and mining groups have pledged since that time expanding the scope of the agreement into a prosperity project for the whole Northern Desert.”
Tell us about the leadership: "The Hegemony is organized into a structure that incorporates the local lords and leaders into a council that dictates the direction of the organization as a whole. There is a Liege, Count Roderick Sturm, Lord Steward of Tyria, and a council below him that runs the various operations and decides the objectives and general direction of the Hegemony. Local groups and businesses can appoint a representative in council meetings to represent their interests and vote on important issues. "
Organization purpose: "The Hegemony has a very diverse agenda but overall, the organization aims to ensure prosperity in the Northern Desert. To that aim, it is a priority to provide uninterrupted trade between the populous Eastern cities of Tyria and our west coast. Of course, being a trade organization, we’re looking to establish connections that span the continent to establish and foster good relations with our neighbors and future friends. Finally, being a largely Waerd population, it is also of great importance to us to increase the influence of the Two-Fold Queen and to increase the prosperity of our fellow Waerd"
Motto/Slogan: "Without Knowledge, even money is worthless. "
Fun Fact: "We all met while brainstorming ideas for starting a brothel. "
Recruitment thread: Here
Thanks Count Roderick Sturm, Lord Steward of Tyria for giving us a better understanding about your organization!
NEW: Submit your CoE Organizations!
We want to highlight you in a future Community Journal. If you have an active CoE organization and are able to provide all of the information requested, we’d love to hear more.
For the first time, we are now inviting all organization leaders to utilize this form and submit your organization details and we may spotlight your organization in a future CJ!
Let us know if you have any questions, or go submit your info now!
Meet a Kingdom
Over the course of the last 2 years, we’ve interviewed almost every kingdom across all four servers on a rotating basis each month. Unfortunately, there is a finite amount of kingdoms, and we’ve spotlighted each one that was willing to participate in different Community Journals. Find all of the Kingdom interviews by browsing Community Journals from the past.
Thank you for reading these interviews, I hope you found them as informative and interesting as we did conducting them. Look for us to continue this tradition in a new way next month.
If you would like to be considered for this spotlight please submit them here.
Important: Continue to share your creations. We need more of them. Please utilize the link above so we can show off your efforts to all Elyrians!
Remember, even if your submission wasn't featured this month, we may still use it in the future.
Thank you for continuing to send us your wonderful creations!
Our first submission this month is from DesiDoll in their interpretation of ”A Female Waerd.”
Our next entry came from Sparrow, who included with their piece that it is a "reworked and colored version of the To'resk architecture artwork." that we shared previously in a shiny.
Next, Count Andreas Crowley shared this commissioned art piece entitled "A portrait depicting my character lounging in his study."
Lastly, this striking image is another submission from Sparrow who shares a black and white drawing that they colorized into a Janoa entitled ”Encounter in the Rainforest.”
For those who love reading great stories, here’s a bonus this month. One of our resident scientists in the CoE community is Scylurus, who many of you may recall wrote an excellent series of tribal stories collectively referred to as “Elyria at War”.
Changing gears, he’s published a brand new story highlighting potential deviant behavior in Elyria with this first entry titled “Crimes of Elyria part one, The Ripper.”] We hope you enjoy it!
More submissions are always needed!
If you have art, songs, poems, or any creation that relates to Chronicles of Elyria you'd be willing to share in a future CJ, find the link at the top of this section, submit, and maybe you will be spotlighted!
Thank you to all of those who submitted your fan pieces!
Meet a Dev
To help you get to know our team better, we try and interview one developer each month, or as often as is possible.
This month, we talk to Raevantiel, an environment artist for Chronicles of Elyria. If you love the biomes and environments you’ve seen coming to CoE in the future, he’s the guy you want to thank. Let’s learn more about him!
Q: Can you share a little about your upbringing? Where did you grow up?
A: ”I grew up on the East Coast of the US. Sixteen years in the south of New Jersey, and some years in Maine. I was raised in a Christian family. I played sports.”
Q: Do you recall your first video game experience and can you tell us about it?
A: ”I have a lot of fond early memories of video gaming -- on SNES, Genesis, PS1, PC & so on. One of the first games I can remember playing ... I knew a guy who had a PC (before my family owned one) sitting at his parents’ house. One day he booted it up --- antiquated version of an OS & all --- and told me to 'check this st out'. As I recall it was the original Duke Nukem from '91. I remember being entranced. The pixels moved. Digital weaponry was fired. I waited to take my turn to play again after having died once again.”*
”After a number of visits to this friend's house, I went out this one time without telling my parents. Hours passed. When I returned home there were cops outside, & there were parents in a fury... That was the last time I ever played Duke Nukem.”
Q: Were you into art before you got into technology/gaming?
A: ”Sort of. I mean I admired beauty, and I was curious about everything --- but I wasn't heavily practicing art. Perhaps the occasional sketch... I also used to really enjoy writing, as well as music. I played piano in my high school years; although I was into it, I just became preoccupied with the world of CGI. That said I still am heavily into music, without producing my own [yet].”
Q: Tones and I or Tone Loc and why?
A: ”Tone Loc. Because, the wild thing. & I listened to a lot of hip-hop growing up. : )”
Q: As an artist, I expect you would choose form over function often. What aspect of your role does function always outweigh form?
A: ”There’s a definite push & pull. For example, when building a shader graph, or a structure which can only meet X degrees of freedom to meet Y spec. Function can overshadow form in cases where the scale is too great to feasibly curate within a short amount of time &/or lack of resources. I’d still say that in most cases it’s only a matter of time… Function and form may be perfectly married if given the right variables.”
Q: Did you go to school to learn your craft or are you self-taught?
A: ”I didn’t go to school for art; one year of college classes whilst learning 3d as a hobby.”
Q: Have you had a favorite pet? If yes can you tell us about it?
A: ”I'll answer with 3 favorites. My childhood favorite was a cockatiel that I named Marmalade. I remember getting her from a parrot breeder down the road. When I first brought her home and opened the cage she bit me so hard that my finger started bleeding. I waited until she was finished... she withdrew her beak & after that moment never really bit me again. Two recent favorites are my current poison dart frogs, and a previous roommate’s cat (not really my pet per se, nonetheless). The frogs cohabitate in their terrarium, & although they can be a hassle to feed, I really like having them. Houdini was a 3-legged boy. I like cats in general... there was something endearing about the fact that he made do without the full set of legs; he was also just a super friendly cat. I miss him.”
Q: What brought you to Soulbound Studios as an environment artist?
A: ”I had a lot of good memories playing MMO's, and I like fantasy. The first movie I saw in theaters was the Fellowship of the Ring, and I enjoyed The Matrix. I was always interested in ideas of fiction’s relationship with reality, the social aspects, simulations, etc. Helping make a game like CoE where there’s both story and an expanse of character options immediately interested me. It hits many of these notes.”
Q: What is your favorite type of food to eat for lunch and why?
A: ”Salmon with cheese and crackers/bread. Smoked.. or teriyaki salmon; smoked cheddar. Often with a spicy sauce on the side. There’s a lot of flavor & it’s not too heavy!”
Q: Which biome did you enjoy creating the most of those you’ve made so far? (no leaks!)
A: ”Oh dang haha. Thus far, probably the Broadleaf Forest or Tropical Rainforest. One of the things I really liked about the Broadleaf was the existence of the giant ironwoods, that dwarf the other already massive trees. The construction method for those is unique due to their size, along with the architectural parts. Generally speaking, trees/flora are amazing.”
Q: What was the biggest challenge you’ve had to overcome so far working on Chronicles of Elyria?
A: ”Working on the terrain data for the maps used with D&SS. Challenges abound, but that one hit many chords of difficulty.”
Q: If you could say anything to the entire community right now, what would it be?
A: ”Consciousness feels like alchemy. Nature is beautiful. I’m glad to be here, along for the ride. Hello, world!”
Hehe, nice closing statement! Thanks Raevantielfor helping us get to know you a little better.
Chronicles of Elyria has a Reddit community, lovingly managed by Hellmoon, Mickdude, ImbuedGreen, and SirApetus.
The highlight this month is on December 7th, our subreddit will turn 5 years old! Thank you to everyone who has participated so far, and to our Com Mods! Here’s to the next 5 years! raises a glass
Don’t forget to share your memes with us. Despite getting tons via our Discord server, our subreddit would love to see them too, so feel free to share there as well!
We continue to be amazed by our community members, even those on other sites such as Reddit. Thank you for all of your help to spread the word about Chronicles of Elyria!
If you are interested in joining our subReddit, find it here
Recently our policy has changed in terms of who has access to share their events with the community in our official Discord.
If you are a content creator and would like to be able to
Utilize our #community-events channel to promote your show or content or
Wish to utilize the new “Go live!” feature in our official Discord
You will need the “Content Creator” role in our server.
If you are interested in gaining this role, please email us at [email protected] with the words “Content creator request” in your subject line. We will send you back the info you need to get setup.
Thank you to all of our content creators that have already quickly moved through the process to become official. We appreciate you!
The Chronicles of Elyria community is a busy one and has been for a long time now. It’s so active that there are many live shows hosted each month. To help you be aware of them, and attend these enlightening and often revealing events, we've summarized those we know occur consistently each month. If you host a show on CoE and want to be included here, please contact us at [email protected]
As a recent change, if your channel hasn't added any new content in the last 90 day period, we'll remove it from this list. If you feel your show was removed accidentally, please contact us or reach out to Serpentius.
Our content creators now have their very own thread & you can preview their content without ever leaving our site!
Check out the new Community Shows directory now.
Newly added: Mishka Rae’s channel!
To easily find it in the future, it is also linked in the new Read First sticky we mentioned earlier.
We love running contests, promotions, and events for our players — but it turns out our players love running them as well!
To help you keep track of all of the different contests and events at any given time, we've summarized them into one directory and stickied it in our General Discussion forum.
The Art of Elyria!
There are a ton of talented artists in our community, many who share their creations in our forums and on our Discord server. Recently, some of those artists (including our super awesome Hellmoon) have created an official Chronicles of Elyria group over at the ultimate web destination for all art: Deviant Art.
Explore the creations, add your own or just support the creativity of our members in the CoE Deviant Art group!
Each month we'll get to know one of our esteemed Ambassadors, as well as let you know the status of current nominations and votes!
Meet an Ambassador
This month we’re talking with Rofus and learning more about what makes him tick. Onto the interview:
Q: Can you tell us a little about where you grew up/or were raised?
A: ”I grew up in a small town in northern Finland. We had nice, warm summers with midnight sun but really cold and dark winters with northern lights dancing in the skies. Now that I live in southern Finland I miss the nature of the north, especially the winters... Anyways, since I lived in a rural area we didn't have many ways to entertain ourselves so I played video games, read a lot more than I do nowadays and I also enjoyed skiing and sometimes fishing too.”
Q: What is your most embarrassing moment you remember as a kid?
A: ”Throwing snowballs was strictly forbidden on the school grounds and I was one of those kids who always followed the rules. The one time I decided to have some fun and throw a snowball, a teacher walked around the corner and saw me throwing it. It was the first and last time I ever got detention and to make it worse, I didn't know my grandmother was visiting so I was mortified when I had to get my mother's signature for the detention notice. I still remember the disappointment in their eyes.”
Q: First video game?
A: ”I'm not completely sure but I think it was Pong. My dad bought one of those Atari's Home Pong consoles from a flea market when I was very young but it's possible I tried some NES games like Super Mario or TaleSpin at my friend's place before that. Later on I got my own NES and I actually just found it amongst some of my old stuff that my parents had saved. Too bad I didn't have suitable cables to test if it still works.”
Serp: ”Hey, me too!”
Q: What got you into technology in the first place?
A: ”Video games of course! I spent a lot of time playing NES and PS1 games with my friends and at some point the focus started moving more towards PC games. Once I got my own PC there was no coming back and I have been stuck in front of the screen ever since.”
Q: What is you RL profession?
A: ”I used to study pharmacy and a couple years ago I ended up working at a pharmaceutical company with their IT systems. That sparked me to change my field completely even though I was really close to graduating as a pharmacist and currently I'm studying IT.”
Q: Caramel or Chocolate?
A: ”Salted caramel! But I do love chocolate too.”
Q: How did you first learn about Chronicles of Elyria?
A: ”Some time before the Kickstarter I was looking for a new MMORPG to play and I found CoE on a list of upcoming games so I started following the development. During the Kickstarter I started reading more and more of the Design Journals and the forums and realized CoE was the game of my dreams. I had already been using discord for a good while but after the KS more CoE related servers started popping up and I became addicted to lurking and chatting with the community.”
Q: Which announced game mechanic are you most excited for?
A: ”Cannibalism! Nah, just kidding, I think the crafting and research mechanics are the most interesting to me. However, I can't wait to see how the mechanics for political systems turn out!”
Q: What do you think is more important, domain lore or surname lore and why? *
*A: ”Definitely domain lore. Sure, lore for surnames is interesting but domain lore is more likely to affect more people and connect or even divide them. Domain lore requires more community involvement and gives some group identity.”
Q: Do you have any plans once in game? Care to share?
A: ”The plan I have had for three and a half years already is to become an alchemist and run a guild for alchemists. Over time I have had many other plans and ideas, like having alts for adventuring, running an inn or hospital and so on, but I also have to focus on running my city and county too so I'm really not sure if I will have the time to do everything I want.”
Q: What do you like about being a Community Ambassador?
A: ”I like helping people and being an ambassador has given me some new chances to be useful.”
Q: Anything you don’t like about it?
A: ”The sense of duty that I have imposed on myself. I often feel like I'm not doing enough as an ambassador compared to some others that have more time and energy to chat on the official CoE server. On the other hand I really enjoy whenever I get the chance to help someone!”
Q: What message do you have for the entire CoE community?
A: ”Have patience! It is easy to get frustrated by people or by having to wait for something but impatience rarely yields anything positive. So let’s be patient with each other and have fun while we wait for CoE!”
We appreciate learning more about you Rofus, thank you for all you do for this community!
If you want to learn more about the current Ambassador program, or know someone you would like to nominate, click on the link!
Thanks for your support, as always.
Subject Matter Experts
The Subject Matter Expert program allows players in the community to lend their expertise to the studio to help make Elyria the best it can be!
SMEs are interacting more and more with the designers lately as game development moves ahead. We’re hopeful to bring on more SMEs with different expertise in the near future. Keep your eyes on this space for that news!
Find our Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) in orange in our official Discord server, and identified as "Subject Expert" in the forums.
Learn more about the SME program here
The Soulbound Studios offices will be closed for the holidays starting Wednesday, December 25th, 2019. We will return on Thursday, January 2nd, 2020.
Any inquiries made during this time will have a delayed response. Thank you for your understanding while the team is away, season’s greetings!
- Being finalized now, our next major event will be the Dutch Auction, also known as Settlers of Elyria. For a general understanding of how it will work, please see this post.
- Prelyria, our pre-Alpha client, is constantly being refined and iterated on. Look for more shinies and information as development of Chronicles of Elyria continues to evolve and expand.
- With a vast amount of our community having chosen their domains, we’ll be spotlighting more of them in future CJ’s. Look for duchies, counties, and settlements to be featured in forthcoming editions of this blog. An announcement with a form for you to fill out is in the works!
- The Dance of Dynasties channel is changing and our expansion of chat-based RP in our official Discord server is almost upon us! Look for more details very soon.
- As Caspian mentioned recently, a new State of Elyria is scheduled to be released before the end of this year, look for it!
From all of us at Soulbound Studios, we hope you have a happy, merry, and joyous holiday season!!
Until next time,
More to come...