Get to know Ethos Island!
April 22, 2016

A large update to V&H has just been released – apart from new features and bug fixes, it also brings an overhaul of our starter area! Explore 7 distinct zones, each with their own locations, quests and secrets to be found!

Gilly Tunnel

Though it colorfully sparkles with pleasing magic and is the shortest route to Summer’s Hollow, Gilly’s Tunnel is no longer to be trusted for it now teems with twisted Kobolds, whose favorite pastime is that of deadly mayhem.

This is where you enter the game. After a caravan journey gone wrong, you will have to find a way out of this Kobold-infested cavern – and in doing so, learning the basics of how to play Villagers & Heroes.


Summer’s Hollow

This bustling little town, where trade and commerce abound, is a colorful mecca for merchants and revelers alike, and is the lively heart of the region especially during festival time, when travelers far and wide flock here to partake of the many merriments provided.

The busy hub of Ethos Island! In Summer’s Hollow you will find quest-givers, vendors, crafting stations, fellow players, and much more. Here is also where the main quest line starts to unfold…


Dagmar Strand

These golden meadows where turning windmills and expansive farmlands abound, are home to luscious vineyards, well-stocked fishing ponds, and more than a few hungry wolves and deadly bees, who are prone to lurk in the radiant fields.

The largest zone of Ethos Island, Dagmar Strand is expansive and filled with areas to explore! Many places to gather resources can be found here, as well as entrances to the Marigold Marina and Briny Caverns.


Gandymeade Grove

This delightful haven of twinkling trees and soft grassy knolls is the idyllic retreat for busy townspeople, picnic baskets in hand, in search of a serene getaway. Be careful though, of the notorious Troll Camp. These unseemly beasts enjoy, too, the many pleasures of the enchanting grove.

The lush grove of Gandymeade contains the largest mine on Ethos Island, and ample supplies of wood. Beware though, as the ancient castle of Mallok is also located deep in the woods…


Marigold Marina

Named so for its beautiful floating gardens, which are famous throughout the land, the marina is also known for its rambunctious nightlife, where those with a taste for gambling and mead will always find their thirsts well-tended to.

The Marigold Marina holds the only way off Ethos Island and into Ardent City, the massive capital of Ardent.


Briny Caverns

A watery labyrinth of twisting tunnels, and sparkling caves. Greenery abounds, as does magic, both benign and dreadful.

These caverns hold many secrets, and are well worth exploring! Rumors have it that an old enemy also have made their home here…


Cronk Island

This diseased island of rotted earth and blackened soil is a haven for outcasts, or those who wish only to be left alone. It lures foul creatures with twisted yearnings whose dark needs are rarely met.

Cronk Island is accessible from Summer’s Hollow, and will play an important role in events to be unfolded…



Villagers And Heroes is coming to mobile!
April 11, 2016

Villagers & Heroes is soon being released on Android tablets and phones! The game is fully compatible with the PC version, and any existing PC players can log into the mobile version with their current accounts and play seamlessly between mobile and desktop.

More details to come very soon! In the meantime, check out the coverage in this month’s Ledger, as well as an extensive FAQ on the forums.



The Ardent Monthly Ledger - Issue 19
April 8, 2016

Villagers & Heroes Is Going Mobile!

Thaaaat’s, right! We are absolutely thrilled to at last be able to share our big, juicy secret with you all, which is this: for the past eighteen months, the Otter team, with much drive and determination, have been working exhaustively upon, and have succeeded in, porting our very large scale MMO, Villagers & Heroes, onto Android devices.

V&H is going mobile! It hasn’t been easy (understatement), and we would first and most of all like to thank all of you, our players, for your steadfast faith and support in our game, and also for your patience – especially these past few months. We know it very likely seemed to you all as though nothing new had been happening lately, or that perhaps various issues were being overlooked. They weren’t. Please know that. Some time ago, we set a target of April as being the month in which we would release the soft launch of V&H onto Android, so things have been hectic, to say the least, these past six weeks. But guess what? Happily, we have reached our goal!

In just a few weeks from now, in April, we will be doing the ‘Beta’ launch. By ‘Beta,’ we mean that a very small portion of the public, specifically the United Kingdom, and only 1% there, will have the opportunity to live ‘playtest’ Villagers & Heroes through their Android devices via the Google Play Store. So head’s up, EU 1: get ready for a whole lot of activity on your server very soon, because that’s where these mobile players will be going, and nowhere else!

The soft launch is just the beginning. We hope you all will celebrate with us, this shiny new door that is about to be opened for Villagers & Heroes. To put it into perspective: no other MMO the size and scope of V&H currently exists on any mobile platform. The future is bright, folks! So again, let us celebrate, and please especially toast yourselves for making this game what it is today. There would be no shiny door about to be opening for V&H, were it not for you all, our truly extraordinary player community. We thank you, so much.


Since you surely have many questions about V&H and mobile, here is a brief FAQ, courtesy of Ivar, to answer some of the more obvious ones.

First of all, simply to make things clear – we are not leaving PC behind. The PC version will be around for as long as V&H will exist, and (as detailed below) both versions will receive all updates we make.

Can I play V&H on the tablet or phone I have?
Currently, the game supports most high-end Android devices. This includes both tablets and phones, though this release is optimized for tablets and certain parts of the game may feel too small on phones. It is a free download however, so absolutely feel free to try the game on your phone! For those of you with iPhones or Windows Phones, we may release versions for these platforms in the future.

Does this mean you will focus less on the PC version?
Not at all! On the contrary, updates are fully shared – meaning that if we release new content, bug fixes, more zones or anything like that, it automatically happens on both PC and mobile. Certain things like controls and UI is platform-specific, but in general all additions and improvements we make from here on will affect all versions of the game.

I currently play Villagers & Heroes on PC. Can I play on mobile with my current account?
Absolutely! One of the biggest feature of the mobile release is the ability to play seamlessly between mobile and PC. If you have a V&H account, you can log into it no matter what you’re playing on, and keep all your characters and progress.

Can people on PC and mobile play together?
For sure. As mentioned above, anyone can play seamlessly between mobile and PC which also means that everyone can play together with everyone, as long as they are on the same server.

Do I have to play on a specific server?
Not at all – the mobile version can connect to any server just like the PC version.

Does the mobile version have all the features of the PC version?
Not at the current moment. Certain features are scheduled to be released in a later update, such as mail, advanced village features, house customization, friends lists and more. That being said, since you can play both mobile and PC with your account, these things are still fully accessible if you log onto a PC.

Are there any features that are unique to the mobile version?
Indeed there are! Most of them are related to the mobile UI, such as an auto-sorted inventory, a more useable map and bounty list, contextual gnogmenting (more on this later!) and more. The core game does remain pretty much identical.

Can I be online on mobile and PC at the same time?
No. You have to log out before you can log into a different device – in the same way that you cannot play on two computers simultaneously.

Is the game still free on mobile?
Pricing is identical to on PC, meaning that the game itself is 100% free. The item shop exists on mobile as well and contains the same items for the same prices.


And here is Sighfrid of EU 1 with another fantastic contribution! Please enjoy his latest card, that of the notorious foe, Amiens!

Card V&H Amiens


leo3

Congratulations, and a sincere thank you to the following five individuals for their outstanding contributions to Villagers & Heroes, and for always going above and beyond in their efforts for the game and community.

The Royal Guardians of the Realm for the month of March are:





braedraza
Braedraza (US 1)

galahad
Galahad (US 2)

des_br
DaiseeCleisee (BR)

famar
FaMar (EU 1)

brave13
Brave13 (EU 2)


The Sneaky Scribbler has been furtively creeping around, not just US 2, but several other servers as well this past month! Thanks, Scribbler, for amusing us again as always.

From The Sneaky Scribbler:

You said it:

V&H infomercials:
“Are you tired of getting stuck in runs?? All alone? Don’t wait — order your life saving “hero call” now… never again will you have to shout “help! I’m being attacked and I can’t fight back!” –Themis (US2)

Talking out of both sides of your… nose:
mr1 we can’t really tell from your nose who you’re talking to, sorry.” –Ekimie (EU-EN)

You tell me:
“What’s that American phrase about doggie treats and underwear??” –Chequa (US2)

When combat goes wrong:
“Could you pull me in a wagon? I’ll wear bells.” –Sergeant (US1)

On hardship:
“It’s not easy being green.” –greenpuppy (US2)

On real life:
“Real life sounds scary to be honest. I heard there was no respawn point.” –Grace Divine (US2)

On vegetables:
“POTATOES RULES” –CyberCore (US2)

On friendship:
“I bite because I care.” –Chandii (US2)


Let’s hear it for our community, and their fabulous Fan Friday creations of the past two months! Have a look….


did_you_also_know_new

Did you know that Avenian of US 1, in addition to having a great many amusing anecdotes and helpful suggestions for V&H players, also dispenses words of wisdom about issues in real life? Well, he certainly does. Avenian, this month, specifically has some words for Otter Damon, and has written him a letter. Thanks (I think?), Avenian!

Avenian’s Letter To Damon

Dear Damon,

As you may or may not be aware of, you are apparently going to be married. As a concerned citizen of Ardent, I would like to offer up some advice to hopefully help you with your future endeavours. Even though I have only been married once and going on 10 years now, I believe that I can provide some helpful hints for your impending doom…I mean your years of wedded bliss.

Early on in my new role of husband, I was given the book, “Stuff Every Husband Should Know” by Erik San Juan. Ironically, this book was given to me by my wife for some reason or reasons that I am still not aware of. This book, much like that puberty book my parents gave me, contains valuable information of which I would like to share…the husband book, not the puberty book.

The Ten Commandments of Marriage

  1. Kids come first. If there are no kids, your wife comes first.
  2. Be kind. A cruel word, once said, cannot be unsaid.
  3. Your wife is always the most beautiful woman you’ve ever seen.
  4. Your wife is always the best sex you’ve ever had.
  5. Everything is your fault. Learn to embrace this.
  6. When your wife says “fine”, it means she is not happy.
  7. Don’t seek to change each other, seek to accept each other.
  8. Let the past say in the past. Your marriage is about today and tomorrow.
  9. Your wedding anniversary and your wife’s birthday are the most important holidays of the year.
  10. Laugh. A lot. Laugh with her. Laugh at yourself.

 

So, hopefully this will help you through your many years with your wife-to-be as you grow with each other. Also, I have not and will not be receiving any royalties from the above book. However, I will accept swag dropped into my Item Shop Bag for relaying this important lifesaving advice to you.

Cheers,

Avenian

avenian


monster_compendium_new

Monster: Growshia
Race: Fairy
Location: Ardent Castle

Despite her angelic face and lovely honeyed voice, Growshia was in fact a nasty little thing who took great delight in tormenting the other fairies in the garden with her unrelenting spiteful barbs. Zipping and darting amidst the colorful blossoms of the castle grounds, she would mock hefty Verna’s oversized girth, or mimic poor Jasper’s unfortunate lisp, or even just needle elderly Brock about his arthritic old wings.

She was awful to every fairy, but one – Lorenzo. With his perfectly coiffed golden hair and dazzling white smile, he indeed cut a dashing figure and Growshia was hopelessly besotted with him. Lorenzo, however, ignored her altogether, for he had eyes only for Petula, a dainty little fairy with a chirpy giggle that scraped across every last one of Growshia’s sour nerves.

One afternoon, determined that he notice her, Growshia spent hours soaking her wings in fragrant rose petal water, then clad herself in a bejeweled gown so that she glittered as brightly as Lorenzo’s sparkling teeth, and completed the picture by tucking her dark curls beneath a frosty pink bonnet identical to the one worn by her tittering rival.

Dressed so, Growshia demurely flapped her little wings, took to the air, and coquettishly flew round and round Lorenzo, who noticed her not at all. His eyes were fixed only upon Petula, who of course chirpily giggled under his admiring gaze. Mightily aggrieved, Growshia wished for the hundredth time that Petula were a disfigured ogre with a belching roar that would send Lorenzo scrambling into Growshia’s arms.

Her spirits being low after this latest failure, Growshia needed to cheer herself up, and, so, flew into the castle dungeon to engage in one of her other favorite pastimes – taunting the gloomy prisoners with whispered words of the glorious freedom that was never to be theirs. She achieved the desired result with the first two prisoners, who promptly burst into tears, but not with the third.

A peculiar, dark-haired man, neither old nor young, he wore a hooded mauve cloak and peered at Growshia with steel grey eyes that felt eerily as though they could see all the way inside of her. And apparently they could. With a strange smile, the man told Growshia that he could read her heart’s truest desire as clearly as if it were written upon parchment, and, should she do him a small favor, he would be happy to give her that which she yearned for most. His name was Timon, he added, in that softly melodic voice of his.

Was she under a spell? Growshia didn’t know or care, for having Lorenzo was all that mattered and all she thought of as she quickly rummaged through the sleeping guard’s pockets and procured the key. She released Timon from his cell. He bowed graciously to her, then gently pressed his palm over her rapidly beating heart, and said simply that it had come to pass. Growshia sailed out of the dungeon.

As she soared ecstatically into the garden, she was met with a scene of great chaos. Mangled flowers, hundreds, lay tattered upon the ground while up in the sky fairies shrieked in horror as they ducked and dodged the flying tree trunks being hurled violently through the air. It was then that Growshia heard the belching roar, and saw the hideous ogre with a frosty pink bonnet atop its bulbous head.

Mammoth and repulsive, the giant beast furiously ravaged the garden and seemed intent upon one fairy only. Lorenzo, his beautiful golden locks in much disarray, scrambled frantically through the air and made straight for Growshia, who, bewildered, screamed as he collapsed into her arms.

They tumbled to the ground. Growshia held him, but for a moment, before the bellowing ogre snatched Lorenzo and unceremoniously crammed the shrieking fairy into her gaping mouth. Petula ate Lorenzo. Sated, the ogre re-adjusted her frosty pink bonnet and lumbered out of the garden.

Growshia wept. But her tears quickly turned to fury when she caught sight of the hooded mauve figure standing calmly amidst the wreckage, speaking softly to several of the other fairies. Growshia irately zoomed toward Timon, who gently placed a palm first over Verna’s heart, then over Jasper’s, and finally over elderly Brock’s old heart. At last, Timon turned and benignly faced the furious Growshia.

Fully prepared to demand that he bring Lorenzo back, Growshia, to her horror, discovered that it was not words which streamed from her mouth, but rather a long chirpy giggle. She tried again, but still only sprightly laughter trickled musically out of her usually snide mouth. Verna, Jasper, and Brock grinned with delight, well pleased that their identical wishes had all been granted. They turned to thank their kindly benefactor, but the mysterious Timon was already gone.

In the sprawling garden of Ardent Castle, Growshia can still be found zipping and darting amongst the colorful blossoms. But visitors take heed, for despite her perky laughter this vicious little fairy wants only to draw blood.


contest_new

The Death Contest!

Ah, Spring, that glorious time of renewal when the world bursts forth with colorful new life! But while blooming flowers are admired, and the scent of freshly mowed lawns are inhaled, and the newly hatched birdies are deemed oh so cute, what about poor old Death?

Death is routinely ignored in the springtime, and it just isn’t fair. Fortunately, our dear Puzzler, ever the champion of equal rights, has ensured that this year, Death, too, will get its proper nod.

Puzzler has devised a wonderfully creative contest for you all on the forums: THE DEATH CONTEST! She asks that you write an obituary for any recently deceased bounty, supply a picture of a slain player killed in an unusual place with a brief description, and lastly to submit an action screen shot of impending death. So let loose your imaginations, folks!

Big prizes! Hurry, and submit your entries before the deadline of April 20, midnight, EST. For more details, please visit our forums here.



The Ardent Monthly Ledger - Issue 18
March 4, 2016

A Sneak Peek at The New Fire Wizard!

Not long ago, we mentioned to you all that we planned to make some much needed improvements to the combat aspect of Villagers & Heroes. So we thought you might enjoy getting a brief preview of the progress made so far on the ever incendiary and powerful Fire Wizard (more on the Ice Wizard later!)!

“The main goal,” explains Diet, “is to make the wizard FUN.” Diet’s focus also included cleaning up certain random aspects of the class so that ultimately the wizard would feel entirely whole – he enhanced, trimmed, and consolidated the build into that of a single forceful entity in which every spell and feat now serves a powerfully relevant purpose.

So what kinds of things can you expect?

  • An all new game mechanic known as ‘Devastation’ in which wizards can ‘kindle’ their fire energy to create the ultimate power!
  • All new animations and audio effects for all fire spells!
  • New Fire Spells! (Volcanic Blast, Flame Bolt, Spark of the Mind to name just a few)
  • No more heavy reliance upon Auto-Attack!
  • The addition of Cast Bars to display the timing of events during combat!

Furthermore, a whole slew of improvements to combat in general, which will be beneficial to all classes, such as:

  • Talent Window and Tooltip make-overs
  • Scaling Powers
  • Global Cooldown
  • A new way to track combat stats (more about this in a future issue of the Ledger!)

And, much, much more!


Though many of the original members of the Mad Otter team (the ‘Founding Otters’) have moved on, their immense contributions to Villagers & Heroes remain today, and always will. These early Otters not only fashioned the unique look and feel of our game, but it was through their vivid imaginations and wildly creative talents that much of the personality of V&H, that quirky playfulness and harmonious spirit we all know so well, sprang into being.

With that in mind, we are so very pleased to be able to introduce to you today one of these founding Otters – lead artist, the tremendously gifted Adam deGrandis whose zesty warmth can be seen and felt in all that he creates. Thank you, Adam, for taking the time to talk with us today! (And also: We miss you!!)

From Adam deGrandis:

Hi Everyone! My name is Adam deGrandis and I worked at Mad Otter from 2007-2011. I was one of the principle artists on the original version of the game, though a lot of my work can still be seen in V&H’s current form; many of the 3d models for characters, monsters, houses, and weapons are mine, and I also did a bunch of animation that’s still there. In fact, one of the male player head options – the stern old man head – was based on an art test I did to get hired at Mad Otter.

Back then, our goals for the art style were twofold. We wanted to create an aesthetic that was bright, punchy, and welcoming. But we also needed it to be a look that allowed for ultra-fast asset creation (“asset” is an industry term for a piece of art). That’s how we settled on the look for V&H. It’s colorful and approachable and doesn’t take itself too seriously, but it’s also fairly simple. During crunch periods, we could do concept drawings of a new monster, model it, and texture it all in the same day. That process usually takes at least a week, if not more.

I also worked with our scripters/quest writers, Darren and Katie, to help build up the lore and figure out how the world flowed. A lot of that has changed, but there are big set pieces that still remain from my time as an Otter. I was around for the naming and theming of Ardent and Greenhaven and Stormhold. How the process worked was we’d get a request from Damon (something like “we should have a snowy realm”) and then Darren, Katie, and I would start talking about what that realm might be in V&H. We’d talk about snowy areas in other games we liked or ones we didn’t. I’d sketch about the things we were talking about.

We’d riff on ideas for potential quests. It would start with someone suggesting a quest story that was pretty run-of-the-mill. Then one of us would excitedly say “yeah, that’s cool, and also X could happen as a misdirect.” We’d keep building on the idea until it eventually devolved into suggesting purposely absurd stuff just for laughs. Those goofy ideas were often the best ones, though, and made their way into the game.

I left Mad Otter in 2011 to move back to my adopted home – Maine – and began freelancing as well as teaching at my alma mater, Maine College of Art. In 2013, my wife and I started our own small studio, Chickadee Games, with the intention of making visually stunning comedy games. We released a mobile title named Notorious Inc, and started a few others. Eventually, though, we decided to rebrand the studio as an art contracting company, which is what we do now.

Our big project right now is called Tooth and Tail, which is being developed by Pocketwatch Games. It’s an arcade real-time strategy game with a modernized pixel aesthetic, and features armies of animals fighting each other for food; the victors eat the losers. Check it out if that sounds like your thing, and follow me on twitter (@adamdegrandis) or tumblr (adamdegrandis.tumblr.com) if you want to see more of my artwork! Thanks for reading!


 


Oh, my. He’s done it again — Sighfrid of EU 1 never ceases to amaze! Thank you, Sighfrid for this fantastic rendition of Kaone!

Card V&H Overlord Kaone


Player: Armageddon
Server: US 1
Class: Warrior

Ace reporter Puzzler is back in action! Her interview subject is someone you all know on the forums as Kapr. In-game on US 1, he is Armageddon, a young man with an incredibly sharp mind and a quick wit, who has been playing Villagers & Heroes for a good many years now, and who has consistently helped our game community and the game for the better. True, sometimes he drives the devs nuts (actually, many times come to think of it), but that is why we Otters love him — because he is forever challenging us to do better! And he’s also a pretty cool guy. Enough rambling. Here is….Arma! (And thank you, Puzzler, for grilling him!)

arma

By some cosmic accident, the world of V&H hasn’t learned your deepest, darkest secret, so what is is? Hmm, something about me that the people of V&H don’t know? Well, truth be told I’m not actually a mean psychopathic killer like I am in-game. Well at least not all at once.. but really, my secret is probably that I have a fear for water/swimming… no it’s not because I’m a witch.

Other than this one, what is your most favorite game? Games? Types of games? Favorite Game (Other than this one of course) would have to be a very old PS2 game called ‘Star Wars Battlefront 2’. Probably not old by the standards of most players in the game however… I enjoyed it because it was back in the day before everything came bundled with season passes, DLCs etc. and when gaming meant going over to a friends house and playing split-screen. That just never happens anymore. My overall favorite type of game would have to be medieval fantasy RPGs. Hey would ya look at that?

What is your one talent that no one on this forum knows about? I’m actually heavily into MMA (Modern Martial Arts) and more specifically XMA. I’ve been doing it for about 6-7 years. I specialize in the bo staff.

Would you rather travel in time to the future or past? Why? And as a traveler to either of those times, would you use your time-traveler-status to seek fame and fortune? Definitely the future! About 3 years in the future so I can play V&H without waiting for the updates. Oh and if I could use time traveling to get fame and fortune, you can bet your buggers I’d do it.

Left or right handed? Left! Makes for awkward handshakes and weird elbow bumping when taking a test in close proximity to a ‘righty’.

We all know you are full of ideas on how to change and improve the game. But, imagine you can do just one thing, right now, this second… what would it be? (please say gardening boost!) Villages vs Village! Creating dungeons with your allies through crafting, monster ranching, and teamwork and then attempting to conquer the dungeons made by another village? That is something I could do daily!

If you invited your guild to a karaoke party what song would you perform for them? I’m not good at making dolphin noises or I would say Skrillex..

What do you consider your greatest accomplishment? (Or, if it hasn’t happened yet, what will it be?) In-game: Obviously the guides website! http://www.vhguides.com/ (Shameless advertising) which is in the process of getting a huge update! In real life: Surviving high school… never going back *shudders*

Tell the world about your hats. Top 3 hats (or outfits) in the game please. You’re making me do the impossible… I have 7 vaults full of clothes! My favorites include (but are not limited to) the purple nymph outfit, the dark sentinel pack from way back when & my lime green lederhosen! Biggest wardrobe failure is when I bought that Clementine dress (for 500 crowns!) because it said it would have a male version. Turns out males and females wear the same thing in V&H.. dresses. A patch or so later they cut the price too.. go figure.

If you were puzzler asking Arma a question, what would she ask you? What would be your answer? Hmm, so you’re asking me a question of if I was you asking me a question what would I ask myself? Am I me too or are you me now? I guess I would ask this: “If you were puzzler asking Arma a question, what would she ask you? What would be your answer?” That’ll boil your (my?) brain!

Favorite food of all time? I once ate Taco Bell every day for a week. I’m Indian and I love Indian food – but Mexican food will always have a special place in my stomach.

What’s your favorite pun-based joke?
There are way too many hilarious puns out there. So I’ll just think of the first that comes to the top of my head (and coincidentally the google search): “I’d tell you a chemistry joke, but I know I wouldn’t get a reaction.”

What was your favorite event that was organized by you? My favorite events are the crafting events I get to host for my Guilds. Nothing makes me happier then watching people flash. :)

arma_swords
Arma’s XMA Weapons


leo3

Congratulations, and a sincere thank you to the following five individuals for their outstanding contributions to Villagers & Heroes, and for always going above and beyond in their efforts for the game and community.

The Royal Guardians of the Realm for the month of February are:





adrilinda
Adrilinda (BR)

tnarg
Tnarg (US 1)

frigga
Frigga (US 2)

gogo
GogoGadgetGo (EU 1)

Isdurit
Isdurit (EU 2)


noble_party

Did you know that on the EU 1 server, a rip-roaring, celebratory event recently took place? The festive bash in question, one filled with much laughter, was a well planned surprise birthday party hosted by Noble Spirit for their dear friend, Mutsie. How exactly does a surprise party get pulled off in V&H? Fortunately, Noble Spirit has supplied us with all the details! Please enjoy the following account of what sounds like a truly wonderful time that was had by many. And a very special thank you to the members of Noble Spirit, and to Mutsie, for sharing with us. :)


The Preparation by Noble Spirit:

I don’t have to tell you: Mutsie will try to help anyone, anywhere, anytime, anyhow, and she doesn’t ask much back. So, once a year we just want to tell her how much we appreciate her, and smother her with presents and hugs. What better day than her birthday?

A week beforehand we started to organize things, and I can tell you, prepping a surprise party by chat is not easy when the subject of the party is around so much of the time. Luckily it was not hard to think of presents this once, she had recently told us she was almost bankrupt because of all the gear she was making (for others!), so the presents were obvious: gems and flowers (btw, she loves flowers, just so you know for the future).

We decided to invite a number of her friends that she had been hunting with lately (yes, I must have missed many of you, my apologies!) and of course the entire guild. That meant a lot of mails had to be sent, but man, did it work! We don’t know how much you all sent her by mail, but she told us it was massive. And that was only part of the presents, the rest we smuggled into the Village Vault fifteen minutes before the party started. That was a scary moment, as Mutsie was running around the village, wondering why everyone was queuing in front of the VV like it was a public toilet… All in all we gathered more than a page and a half of stacked bling and flowers, and it took much more time to fill than we anticipated. The first guest were already arriving while we were still frantically organizing the vault, Mutsie was snooping around, and it looked like this was going wrong!

But then… we were saved by the phone… A big thanks to the person that just at that precise moment decided to call Mutsie for her birthday, and gave us the time to finish the vault and welcome the arriving guests.

When Mutsie (finally ) finished her phone call, the village was full of guest, guildies and other gentlemen and ladies. It took a few seconds before she realized all these people were here for her, but then the fireworks started, drinks drunk, presents presented, hugs hugged, kisses blown and the party was crashed joyously. To me, the rest is a blurred and happy memory.

The Effect by Mutsie:

It was evening after a day filled with sweet surprises in my mail box: pressies, lovely poems , sweet words and wonderful wishes! I was tending to garden and animals as I got called away from game by a phone call. I had no suspicions whatsoever of something going down, as I had requested not to make it a big thing. It’s only my birthday, and why should mine be celebrated more than others?? Getting to play with friends everyday is a party on its own, and being part of this community is the best gift one could ever wish for, and I am happy to be part of it!

On my return, I was called to village centre and almost fell off the hill there seeing so many guildees, friends and hunting buddies secretly gathered around the village vault. You guys really know how to keep a secret! Fireworks and cheers coloured the atmosphere, it was such a pretty sight to see.
Later on the party moved to my house, and for unknown reasons, we all ended up wearing our “bubbles crown” people lost their clothes and ended up sitting on roofs!

We attempted to do a conga line, which wasn’t as easy you’d expect, but still did a pretty good job. We’ll never find out who spiked the punch, but I am pretty sure after a hectic and fun party like that, no one cares to know, as long as it happens again on the next one to celebrate their day of birth. Pictures were taken, and published with the consent of the people featured in them. Thank you everyone on EU1 server, for making this day a very special one!

XX Muts


And speaking of events…if any of you V&H players out there have been wracking your brains lately trying to come up a little something for your village to do, then worry not because Avenian of US 1 has just the thing! Thanks, Avenian!

Need A Guild/Village Event? By Avenian

A couple weeks ago, I hosted an event called the “Catch Me If You Can Event.” The premise is somewhat simple in that I would hide somewhere, and the first person to open a trade window with me would get a prize. The hard part for the attendees was that I was hiding in some less traveled locations within some well traveled zones. Also, since there were no random drug tests, all and any boosts were welcome.

We started in the Village, and my first hiding spot was upon a mountain near the Training Grounds. It was great to open up my local map and see a mass of blue icons running all over the place after the “GOOOOO!!!!” was said in local chat. I made sure that everyone put me on their friends list so that I would appear on the map as we had attendees from various guilds. We were also fortunate to have some extra prize donations that allowed me to hand out 1st, 2nd, and “3rd” place prizes.

The next spot I hid in the Village was behind the portal to Ardent City. I think a lot of people got a kick at being able to explore areas they had never been to before. They also got to see how much space the Villages have. There is so much space that the Developers could easily expand villages to include 30-40 more housing plots. (I hope those rumors of the Developers “insta-ban” button are not true.)

The third and final spot was the most difficult and took place in Ardent City. Some of the difficulties in travelling to these off-the-beaten path spots are that they contain holes or spots where you can get stuck. Still, people enjoyed the challenge and the cursing of my name was at a minimum.

So if you feel that this would be fun, then you are more than welcome to use and improve upon this event. This could even be expanded to a server-wide event as long as zones are accessible to all. Also, if you want more details on this event then feel free to contact me in the forums.


did_you_also_know_new

Did you know that a mysterious envelope was mailed to the Mad Otter office earlier this week? There was no return address on it, and, more mystifying, was that the little envelope contained no letter or note at all inside.

Instead, upon opening it, we discovered a handful of jigsaw puzzle pieces and nothing else! Curiosity now killing us, Damon (he of the nimble hands), quickly assembled the puzzle pieces and…. ta-da! Behold the otter puzzle! And on the other side of the puzzle is a message from its creator, a Villagers & Heroes player. We will leave you in suspense as to who it is until next month, when we reveal a picture of the puzzle’s other side…

Suffice to say, the Mad Otter team was absolutely delighted by the gift, and quite touched. :)


contest_new

The Winners of the Sneaky Scribbler Caption Contest!

Once again, the Sneaky Scribbler kept V&H players busy on the forums this month with another lively caption contest! You can read all of the wonderful entries here.

sneaky

Congratulations, to the winners! And they are:

First Place: RedEye (US 1):

Second Place: Elan Dark (BR)

Third Place: Rayne (Server ?)

 

And the winning caption by RedEye is:

“Chant of the Butterfly Hunter – I am a tree, I am a tree, land on me, land on me.”


BusterSmiles2012a

Everyone, please meet Buster! Thank you Katona of US 2 for sharing with us!

From Katona:

​This is Buster, aka Busterdawg, aka Bussie, aka Bus. Buster is what my husband Greg and I call our ‘love child’. A year after buying our first house together my husband and I decided it was time we got a ‘child’ and we had mutually agreed that a Dachshund would be fun. One day as I walked in through the employee entrance at the hospital I worked at I noticed a picture of some puppies with the always tempting “Free” noted in the title. I called my husband with the instructions to call the number in the bulletin ad and pick out a puppy for us if one of them felt ‘right’. When I got home I saw my husband snuggled on the couch with this precious guy and we have been owned and ever grateful that Buster chose us from that day on.

Buster is a beagle/dachshund mix and he runs the household as it should be ran according to his ever delightful terms. We do not own a pet; Buster owns us and showers us with love and kisses extraordinaire. Buster is an avid hunter and has made sure the back yard is mole-free and he is proud to announce that he caught his first squirrel a few weeks ago (to Mom’s horror).

Buster loves everyone he meets and is the household greeter. He lavishes his love on every person who visits and we know if Buster doesn’t like someone that someone is to be avoided. Buster doesn’t like to brag but he is very intelligent and fluent in doggie-talk. Buster also knows English quite well and he can also spell GREENIE and he is proud of his title “The Little General”. Buster’s hobbies include sleeping in Dad’s chair, sleeping on the couch when Mom isn’t looking, hunting and of course barking at and chasing squirrels. Buster says his number one peeve is fleas and he has started his own campaign to have them eradicated.

Somehow in his spare time Buster goes to the store every year and gets Mom a Mother’s Day flowering vine and a card. We still haven’t figured out how he does this amazing feat.

Simply stated Buster is the greatest dog in the world. To our surprise we recently found out that in addition to being as wonderful as he is to us every night he flies using his beautiful ears as wings and saves all the starving children of the world. He is an amazing, one of a kind dog of dogs and we are proud to be his own.

My characters: Katona, Catona, Noni all on US2.



The Ardent Monthly Ledger - Issue 17
February 5, 2016
Sugarsweet Summit Has Arrived!

Level capped players are no doubt already busy exploring the woodsy wonders of the Copse of the Treants, the new high level content which arrived in this latest patch, but another little zone also descended upon the Seven Realms this week: Sugarsweet Summit!

This delightful event zone, where players of any level can festively band together and traverse the pink and purple slopes of this oh so candied land, is home to a slew of mischievous creatures, all of whom, despite their cheerful sounding names, are brutal foes in need of a good thrashing! So arm up, all, and prepare to be well rewarded for your energies. Sugarsweet has an abundance of goodies to offer, and none who enter will come out empty handed!

This year, in addition to the lively new ‘Gumdrop’ outfits, our artists have also created a unique line of dessert-themed weapons and hats! Lollipop Sweetsword, anyone? Or maybe a Chocolate Sugar Top Hat? And let’s not forget the pets and toys! Blow a kiss, as is only appropriate during this romantic month, to that special someone in-game with the one-of-a-kind, ‘Kissy Lips’ toy. Or shower your friends with a lavish light display of candies with the new Chocolate Surprise toy. And if any have ever wanted a pair of luscious winged lips to accompany you around on all your adventures, then fear not, the Little Lips Companion will not disappoint!

But perhaps one of the best treats this year, and featured only during the stay of the SugarSweet Summit event, is this: We are selling Premium Gathering Supplies in the item shop! The Brine Coated Candy Apple, the Hyper-Inducing Birthday Cake, the Umph-Hoo-Ah-Roll, and the Supersweet Candy Bar are all Premium Gathering Supplies.

Happy Valentine’s Day!


Have you ever desperately wanted to give a friend a present in-game from the item shop, only to find that the item you had your heart set on for them was not tradeable? Or maybe you wished you could just give them some of your own crowns, but were told that this, too, sadly, was also not possible?

Well, guess what? Those days are over! Did you know that with this latest patch, we have introduced Crown Gifting Packages? That’s right, now you can give your special friends a little present or a large one. The packages range in various sizes, and the crowns will be added directly to their account, enabling your friends to purchase whatever they like in the shop!

And that’s not all! These crown packages can also be put up for sale in the Auction House, and all sizes will sell for the exact amount given. This will surely stimulate in-game economy.

So what are you waiting for? Send your special someone or sweetheart the ultimate Valentine’s Day gift!

new_crowns


And here is artist extraordinaire, Sighfrid of EU 1, with his depiction of that incendiary level 40 Elder Boss that you all love to hate: Karackus! Thank you, Sighfrid!


Player: Zyani
Server: EU 1
Class: Hunter

zyani

Rumor has it that you are a long time veteran of Villagers & Heroes, and have been playing the game for over four years! As a player who has watched V &H go through countless changes, what have been some of your most favorite improvements to the game over the years? The latest system for the gathering is for me the best improvement so far, the replacement of vim instead of the energy was an improvement on its own, but the newest is the best.

What activities do you enjoy when you are not playing Villagers & Heroes? I still have a full-time job and a household to keep, but the game is relaxing me a lot.

What is your favorite zone within V&H and why? Not really have a favorite in the game. Some areas are very beautiful, others I rather avoid.

If you had to live without one of your five senses, which one would you give up and why? All your senses are needed for a human’s self protection. Can’t really answer this question.

What is on your dream wish list of features you’d like to see added to Villagers & Heroes? Already made several suggestions for the game, but 2 are still something I like to see: adding a 4th char so you can play all 4 classes, or (as my latest suggestion) an option to change classes. Another thing would be more places to add spells and feats, there are 10 now but a few extra would be nice.

What animal best represents you and why? Tough one, my constellation is Dragon (Thay) but for the game I think a cat-like would be my style. Playing hunter class with sneak as main spell (stealth-hunting).

As a Hunter, which attributes about the class are your favorites and why? And if you could add or change one thing about Hunters what would it be? Think I already answered it in question before this, I use sneak the most. (the spell not the player, Sneak XD) The biggest issue with hunters is still the spirit. It drops fast and regenerates slow.

If you could form a special party made up of yourself and three Elder Bosses in V&H, which bosses would you choose to be on your team and why? What name would you give this special team of yours, and which zone would you run first with this formidable gang? First Novacore who has a very strong AOE, Second (forgot his name) in the rift the tree-like elder who has both healing and restraining spells (been in rift only once), last but not the least one of the oracles in shadow traven, the swordsman in the north part, you need someone who can tank. I am bad with names so I have to skip that part of your question, and I don’t have a special zone I would like to run. I like almost all zones.

What is the best concert you have ever been to? Not my style, I hate crowded places.

If you were only allowed to describe Villagers & Heroes using four words, what words would they be? Relaxing, fun, adventurous, never boring.


For a number of years now, the Fan Friday submission contest has been a staple of Villagers & Heroes, and it demonstrates every week just how talented and creative our community is. Please enjoy this look back at the Fan Friday entries from the past eight months. (From now on, we will be providing musical slideshows such as this one every two months in the Ledger of Fan Friday entries.)


leo3

 

Congratulations, and a sincere thank you to the following four individuals for their outstanding contributions to Villagers & Heroes, and for always going above and beyond in their efforts for the game and community.

The Royal Guardians of the Realm for the month of January are:

scar
Scarlet Night (US 1)

witch
Witch (EU 2)

katona
Katona (US 2)

lill
Lillita (EU 1)


As always, a tremendous thank you to Avenian of US 1 for contributing this charming piece, and also to the Sneaky Scribbler of US 2 for once again making us all smile!

Villagers & Heroes Reborn: The Next Generation By Avenian

Until recently, I have been able to run around V&H while my 4 year old daughter would play with her own toys or sit on my lap while my hunter when hunting. However, things are a changing. You see, we only have 1 TV in our household which is similar to my situation when I was a kid. The difference is that my computer is connected my TV. And really, with two tablets and a laptop, we have no issues when it comes to TV viewing entertainment.

Well, my daughter took great pride the one day when she tapped on the space bar while I was playing. Seeing my toon jump gave her great amusement. This expanded to her asking me a few days later, “Daddy, are going to play your game?” Of course, not wanting to deprive my daughter, I put her on my lap and we ran around Traven while she jumped and pointed out the “big fishies” (pelogs) that we needed to get.

It has now evolved to the point that she can use the arrow keys to move around the lands, that we need to take turns playing, and that she has her own character. I get the feeling that I am being pushed out. My daughter also understands we can’t fight the “big guys” (elder bosses) unless we have some friends to help. Oh, and she really enjoyed the Christmas outfits, as she remarked on how beautiful Abit (US1) looked in her Santa get-up.

I remember and know how much fun it is gaming with real life friends as well as the online friends that are met. Being able to share something with my daughter is a great enjoyment while she still allows me too. Also, since she goes to bed early, at least I can play for a little bit before I hit the hay.

So, if you see me running around and jumping all over the place, note that my daughter is likely in control as she giggles and laughs away. My real concern is in a few years when my 1 year old son might start to take an interest….!

From The Sneaky Scribbler:

You Said It:

New chat channel?
“all nakie… all the time.” — Mercedes (US2)

On invitations:
“The first time I was invited to a party, I didn’t accept. I thought, I don’t have time to go to a party!” –AliasSam (US2)

To Thine Own Self…
“I think I am being self-righteous and I don’t know if that is wrong of me.” –Laudia (US2)

On new skills:
“There should so be exp for dancing in your underpants.” –Bast (US2)

On class:
“Fart jokes are always funny.” –Gwyn (US2)

Auction house fail:
“WTB a pepperoni tree.” –Booger15478 (US2)


Valentine’s Day – flowers, romance, chocolates, supermarkets filled with red-colored heart shaped things! Well, since this is THAT month, we thought we’d share with you all what some of the Otters think about Valentine’s Day. They’ve been asked to either relay a memorable Valentine’s Day in the past, or else share what their plans are for this upcoming February 14th. Or to just share anything at all on the topic.

From Ryan:

I have a great Valentine’s/SugarSweet story!

I had only been playing Villagers and Heroes for about a week. My main purpose (aside from having fun) was to meet the community and to get familiar with certain aspects of the game. I was running around Sugar Sweet, killing skinks, when I encountered a player named TubaDave (US1). I knew him from a singing contest that he participated in a month back and from Sarah Otter who told me a little bit about him. I listened to his and Johnnycat’s pieces for several days, so I had to go up and tell him that I loved his singing.

Plus, I figured it would be a quick conversation since I was a random stranger. Instead, he helped me gather my skinks and we fought Tootsie! He said the two of us could take him; which now I know better! It was a pretty quick and epic death.

I tried to pull the mobs off him, and he tried to solo the bounty. It was a lot of fun. After that we ran for my first Elders (I had no idea the significance of the elder until he sat me down and lectured me for almost…1 to 2 hours, covering many aspects of the game.

Soon after, do you know what happened? He asked me to keep a secret!

“Don’t tell anyone about it, especially the mods or the Otters…the girls will kill me if they change it,” he whispers to me.

Hahahahahaha! Poor guy, little did he know he was speaking directly to a developer! Before I could stop him, he said: “There is a glitch with the female dance animation in the water, that we call water skiing. The guys can do a little bit too.”

And then, he proceeded to show me how to do the trick. It still brings an evil grin to my face. Hahahahahaha!

It was a harmless glitch though…and I actually figured out why the men were unable to ski as long as the women. It turns out the men’s dance weren’t set to repeat (which the dance is supposed to do)! They were actually broken!

So, TubaDave…how is your water skiing now? 😉

From Damon and Sarah:

We are outta here! Next week, on Feb 12, we are fleeing rainy, cold, Oregon for seven days and taking a vacation for the first time in what feels like AGES. So on the 14th, we will be wandering around scenic Carmel, California, doing absolutely nothing productive whatsoever. (We will even be temporarily disabling Skype on our cell phones! Can you believe it?) After Carmel, we’re off to San Francisco for a few days. Going to be fun!

From Liam:

My brother has a tradition of going to the store right after Valentine’s Day, because all the candy goes on clearance prices, so he stocks up on heart-shaped Reese’s and fills his companion cube with it.

From Thorsten:
I guess I’m falling into the indifferent category … we never do anything special on Valentine’s Day. We’re in our 15th year. Guess you stop doing ultra-romantic stuff eventually….:)

From Ivar:
My wife and I will be doing nothing in particular for the 4th year in a row now, as well. Valentine’s Day actually only recently appeared as a tradition in Sweden – around the nineties. That being said, today it’s pretty much identical to its American counterpart with chocolate, flowers, the whole package! We’ve never really been into it, though it’s sweet to hear about what others are up to. :)


Liam’s Brother’s Companion Cube


Fishing for dummies
By Selia (EU 1)

The Winners of The Sneaky Scribbler Caption Contest!

The Sneaky Scribbler has been sneaking around the forums! The Scribbler, this past month, came up with a fantastic contest for players on all servers to participate in. The rules were simple: the Sneaky Scribbler provided a picture, and asked that players write a creative caption for it. As always, there were SO MANY great submissions! You can read them all here on our forums.

And the winners are…..

First Place: Selia (EU 1)

Second Place: Gadzooks1 (US 1)

Third Place: Soysauce (US 1)


No matter which server we play on, or what language we speak, or which country we live in, there is one thing in our real lives that I think we can all agree we have in common, which is this: our shared love of pets! With that in mind, we thought it would be fun if our V&H players had the opportunity to share their beloved furry or feathered or maybe scaly companions with the rest of the community every month in the Ledger, and so we have created a new section just for that purpose!

If you would like for your pet to be featured in the Ledger, please take a photo of him or her, and tell us a few words about them. There is no such thing as too many pet photos! (The Otter team LOVES pets, in case that was not already widely known.) So we can’t wait to hear from you all! Please send your submissions to: [email protected]

Kicking things off for us today, are the gorgeous Savannah owned by Soy Azeltin of US 1, and the feisty, blue-tongued Ronwe, beloved dog of Malekil on EU 1!

soy_cat
Savannah

From Soy:

Savannah was a stray that adopted my husband and I. We live in the country and saw her around our house for a couple of months before she decided she needed our help and jumped on my office window to get my attention. She was very weak at this time and we spent a few days feeding her and gaining her trust before moving her to a quarantined inside location. She had a sinus infection so off to the vet we went for a check-up and some antibiotics.

To our surprise, we found out she was a Bengal cat. (I have always thought they were beautiful cats) We knew we were in for a treat with this cat, once we got her healthy. She had belonged to someone who took care of her at one time as she was spade, the vet thought maybe 3 to 4 years old.

After a few months in isolation, we introduced her to our other 3 cats. That was 3 months ago and she is still settling in to the family. She no longer growls at everyone and everything, for the most part. As is the nature of a Bengal, she is vocal and lets you know when she is not happy about something.

She is a pretty mellow kitty, lovable, sweet, patient, ornery (she stalks our big male, then growls at him as if it is his fault she is stalking him). She now is comfortable enough to eat with the other cats and try to initiate some play time.

We still have some health issues we are trying to figure out and heal up with her. But she is worth the time. Just look at that face, how could you not just fall in love with it!

_____________________________

oskar_dog
Ronwe

From Malekil:

His name is Ronwe – actually, ‘Voronwe,’ which means “faithful” in Tolkien elvish. (Yes, it was my wife who named him. :))
Breed: Eurasier. Ronwe is also part ‘Wolfspitz,’ which no longer exists and is now known as Keeshond. Age: 8. Personality: Neurotic…hyperactive, curious yet cautious.

His favorite spot is the couch, which we fight about it. When we ask him “where’s the pig” (a squeaky toy), he goes most of the time to mum. :)



Patch 3.13.0 – The Copse Of The Treants
February 3, 2016

New high-level zone: Copse Of The Treants

New content is here! Enter the ‘Copse of the Treants’ and pick up where the story left off in Bevyn’s Coille. Dionte continues to need heroes to help prove his innocence, and end the war between the Spriggans and the Treants.

Level cap raise

The max level has been raised to 79 for all skills.

Return of event zone: Sugarsweet Summit

Sugarsweet Summit has just swooped in with all of its candy loving fun and deliciously evil creatures! (Not to mention some lively new outfits and toys!)

Crown Gifting

You can now gift crowns to other players using the Item Shop.

And more!

This patch also brings many other features and bugfixes.

For the full patch notes, go here:
https://forum.villagersandheroes.com/showthread.php?12473-Patch-3-13-0



Now released: The Copse Of The Treants!

If you successfully completed the journey through Bevyn’s Coille and have been eagerly awaiting the next new batch of high level content, the wait is over!

The Copse of The Treants is a magical woodland full of intrigue and danger which holds more than a few surprises for the adventurously inclined, as well as for any quest lovers out there who are determined to unravel the on-going mystery presented by the imprisoned Dionte in the Coille, and put an end to the civil war between the Spriggans and Treants once and for all!



What else can players expect from The Copse of the Treants? A new level cap raise, all new monsters, new dailies, new stories, and a secret second zone within the Copse where challenge after challenge awaits for those with the stamina to endure them!


Also: Sugarsweet Summit!

But Patch 3.12.6 isn’t just for high level players. It is February, after all, that special month of romance and valentines and all things sweet, and what better place to spend it than within Villagers & Heroes where old friends and new friends alike can come together to explore the pink and purple slopes of Sugarsweet Summit, battling evil foes and gaining great rewards!

Get ready for some intoxicating delights, and all manner of lively new toys, outfits, one-of-a-kind weaponry packs, and some truly formidable enemies despite their deceptively sugary names. Great fun awaits all, in this exciting new patch!



Coming soon: Copse of The Treants and Sugarsweet!
January 27, 2016

Start winding your clocks, because the countdown has begun! Very soon now, all level capped players, those who have successfully journeyed through Bevyn’s Coille and who have been eagerly awaiting access to the mysteriously locked portal known as ‘The Copse of the Treants,’ can start gearing up because the wait is almost over!

And that’s not all! This soon-to-be-released extra special build also contains the added pleasure of the always intoxicating event zone, Sugarsweet Summit. The majestic pink and purple slopes of this enchanting land, where fiendishly candied creatures lurk and where great rewards await, will soon be descending upon Ardent. Players of any level will once again be able to festively band together and battle the sugary terrors that await within, as well as partake of the many other unique delights this Valentine-themed zone has to offer.

Start your clocks! It’s going to be a wonderful month!



Visit our Official Forums!
January 11, 2016

Villagers & Heroes is above anything else a great, passionate and dedicated community – within and outside the game. If you’re looking for more ways to interact with fellow V&H players, be sure to sign up on our Official Forums, which can be reached here or by clicking “Forums” on the website header. You can then log in with your game account and choose a username. We have just finished a major redesign of the forums and would love for you to join our ever-growing community!



Patch 3.11.0

This is a small patch containing various bugfixes and improvements.

For the full patch notes, see the forum thread.