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.



The Ardent Monthly Ledger - Issue 16
January 8, 2016
Coming Soon:
The Voyage Through The Blighted Isles: Part Two!

In our special New Year’s edition of the Ledger last week, we described for you the high level content we are currently working on, and which daily grows ever nearer to completion!

Instead of repeating all that we said in that issue about the beautiful scenery, exotic new monsters, and the many unique challenges which can be expected, it is far more fun to now reveal to you that which we did not share before, which is: it is not just one zone, but TWO zones that we will be releasing within this chapter of new content.

In addition to the Copse of the Treants, get ready for a second fantastical new zone! We promise that ‘Maldywn’s Tomb’ will have even some of our most hardcore gamers frantically pulling out their hair in an effort to solve some of the many enigmatic mysteries within this vast, and hauntingly beautiful place.


Unlike other games, Villagers & Heroes has been blessed with an extraordinary player community – a vast group of individuals spread around the globe, who seem always to put the needs of others first, and who have cultivated an environment which truly champions such values as friendship and kindness.

And so it is that when members of our V&H family pass away, we acutely feel the loss. Sadly, in these past few weeks, we have had to say good bye to two very special individuals, both of whom will be greatly missed: Bobo The Hobo of US 1, and StrikeN of EU 1.

We would like to remember them here now, and we offer our deepest sympathies to their friends and loved ones.

Bobo The Hobo (US 1)

Bobo The Hobo was a proud member of the guild, Legends Reborn, and it was there that he found a home in the truest sense of the word. His generosity to others was well known, as was his gentle charisma and exceptional sense of humor – a sparkling trait which engendered him to so many. Bobo made people smile, which is a quality that can never be praised enough.

The loss of Bobo is keenly felt by so many on the US 1 server. All knew him, respected him, and genuinely enjoyed spending time with him. Bobo was a US military veteran, and proud of his service, so let us, too, acknowledge him for this and give our thanks.

Bobo, you were much loved and will truly be missed. All thoughts are with you.

An in-game tribute will be held for Bobo on Sunday, January 10th on the US 1 server at 6pm EST in Ardent City. All are invited to attend the tribute, where this good man will be honored and remembered.

In Memory of StrikeN (EU 1)

On EU 1, the passing of StrikeN is likewise deeply felt, particularly among those in his beloved guild, Asgaard. StrikeN had been battling an advanced illness for some time, and yet, even in his final days, it was within V&H that he most wanted to spend his remaining hours, and he did.

Unable to physically play himself, he enlisted four of his grandsons to play for him, as he watched upon the large TV screen hooked up for that purpose. StrikeN dearly loved this game, and loved his guild, so much so, that he also insisted that his caregiver play for him so that he might talk with his guild mates in the late hours of each night.

StrikeN’s last wish was to kill Lord Pyrrus. A few days before he passed away, his grandson tried again, along with members of Asgaard, to fulfill that wish for him, but were unable to do so given the lateness of the hour and the small size of the group. It was “sad, but also beautiful,” explains his friend and guild leader, Bless, because it showed how much hope and drive the game gave StrikeN right up until the end.

An in-game memorial will be held for StrikeN on Sunday, January 10th at 21:00 CET on EU 1 in Asgaard village. All are invited to attend. StrikeN’s final wish will also be honored during that time.


As I hope you are all aware by now, The Ardent Monthly Ledger is a community work and we’ve been so fortunate to have so many players from Villagers & Heroes contribute their own unique voices and talents to it on a regular basis.

With that in mind, I’m absolutely thrilled to announce that Sighfrid of EU 1, an insanely talented artist as you all well know, has volunteered to contribute an original piece of art a la V&H to every edition of the Ardent Monthly Ledger! Sighfrid, we truly thank you!

And here are, ‘The Three Legendary Crafters’ by Sighfrid:


We are delighted to interview our first Brazilian player for the Ledger this month! A sincere thanks to Metilamina, and also to Elan Dark for helping to facilitate it!

Player: Metilamina
Server: Brazil
Class: Wizard

Metilamina

Metilamina (BR)

How long have you been playing Villagers & Heroes? What was it about the game that first hooked you, and has kept you playing ever since? I have play Villagers and Heroes for approximately 2 years. I found it when I was looking for RPGs on Steam, so I decided to test the game. From as soon as I started it, I loved its style, and I had so much fun. The gameplay and friends are what kept me in the game all this time until now.

In our special New Year’s edition of the Ledger, game designer Diet described some of the new changes players can expect with regards to combat mechanics – new spells, animations, self-fusions, combo attacks against enemies to name a few. Wizards will be the first class to undergo these improvements, and you are a wizard! What is your perception of these intended changes? Are you looking forward to them? Which spells do you favor the most, as well as the least, and specifically, what improvements would you most like to see made within the wizard class? I am very eager to meet the new spells and fusions for my class, but I wish there were no major changes in gameplay, though. What we really need is physical damage, because Bevyn’s Coille is very hard to solo play.

What is your favorite event zone within Villagers & Heroes, and why? My favorite event zone is Sugarsweet Summit, because of its design of the map, which is kind of different, the mobs drops nice goodies, and it was the last event map where there was Vim (I spent so much time gathering to find Vim refills). And if I could change anything, I just would increase the drop rate of potions when killing mobs, I can’t think of an event better than that.


Did you make a New Year’s resolution? If so, any interest in sharing it with our Ledger readers? If you could make a New Year’s resolution for Villagers & Heroes, what would it be?
I have some resolutions for the new year in the game. One of them is level my gardening at lvl 77 and get all my guild’s village projects fully completed. And for all the players, I wish they can level their gathering, crafting and combat up to level 77 (the next patch is coming, better hurry up then!).

You have the distinction of being our first Brazilian player to be interviewed by the Ledger! (Many more to follow, we hope!) For the benefit of our readers, please tell us a little about Brazil and where you live. Are there any significant differences or things you think we should know with regards to Villagers & Heroes on the BR server?
I live in southern Brazil, in a small and tranquil city called Santa Cruz do Sul. Brazil is a cheerful country, with some problems that tend to be corrected in the future, we hope so. The Brazilians like to have fun and we love the internet, which makes this combination something great to the MMO’s gamers.

What is the most memorable (grueling, exciting, fun, etc) Elder Boss battle you’ve had in V&H, and why?
It was the battle against Lord Pyrrus. When he was finally defeated, I felt a great chill, followed by an immense joy.

What activities do you enjoy when you’re not playing Villagers & Heroes? I love to see movies, especially if it is about science fiction or action. Besides that, I like to play soccer and basketball.

Please tell us a little about your guild, ‘Seek &Destroy.’ What is guild life like? Fairly active? Do you do events, if so, what kind? How are the village projects coming along? Is there, or was there, a favorite project among your guild? Seek & Destroy is my first and only guild. We are a family, where each member helps another in everything we can. We hunt together and we take the front when hunting event Elder Bosses, helping anyone who may want join, and inviting all players online. Currently, we are committed to complete the village projects (Village Vaults, the Statues and the Village C.O.G. NPCs).

If you could have dinner with any historical figure, who would it be and why? I don’t know about what historical figure I would like to have dinner with, but I’m a huge fan of the trilogy “The Lord of the Rings”. So, if I could choose, I would like to have dinner with Gandalf, and discover all the secrets of his spells, hahahah!

What feature or features would you most like to see added to Villagers & Heroes, and why?
I think a feature that would be nice for the players is a sort of “auto-gather” option, because the gather process it’s kinda tough the way it is today. And a combat zone Player x Player wouldn’t be that bad…


In our New Year’s edition, in which we described for you what to expect in the first few months of 2016, one of the aspects of the game we told you we were working on was item shop expansion, and our plan to release new outfits and gear every week. The plan will be implemented by mid-January, and we thought you all might enjoy getting a sneak peek at a few of the items you can expect.

Our Art Director and designer of the below items, Chris, is here today to say a few words about his creations.

Chris:

Here are two of the outfits I’ve been working on! Each of these are class specific items that are part of a set of four. We’re aiming to add a lot of variety. I hope you enjoy the first entry in the Dark Knight (for Warriors) and Mystical Troupe (for Hunters) themes!


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 December are:

 

alejah
Alejah (US 1)

huh3
Huh2 (US 2)

xoka
Xoka (EU 1)

jey
Jeylana (EU 2)


Do these two even need an introduction anymore? Ah, why not! Where would we be without the fabulous Avenian who every month delights us with his insights and adventures, and The Sneaky Scribbler, ever the eavesdropper, who wittily transcribes the quotes of others and adds his own unique stamp to them. As always, thank you Avenian and Sneaky Scribbler!

2015 Year in Review by Avenian (US 1)

As we move ahead and look forward to the upcoming changes and additions to Villagers and Heroes, I felt that it would be great to look back at the previous year. A great deal has changed over the course of one year, and I am always impressed on how the developers listen to the community for adjustments to some of those changes. So, let us take a look at the year that was 2015.

I find it hard to believe because I keep thinking that this event zone has been around forever, but February saw the launch of the newest holiday event zone, Sugarsweet Summit. I felt this new zone was a great addition, and anytime you can get free sockets is just icing on the cake (I think I still have some Heart Sockets). A nice feature of the event was the ability to send lolly-grams to that special someone while tackling all the great quests and bounties of the Summit.

The HUGE change came in June with the REBORN update. New starter zones, new gathering system, touch ups to zones and graphics, added quests, new bounty system, and Rebirths, to name a few of the changes. We said good-bye to VIM (now I could sleep in and not have to getting a bounty before work or bed), and said hello to COGS and gathering supplies. This also displayed how the developers listen to us when changes to the gathering supplies were made more manageable.

Midsummer’s Eve event zone saw the use of companions, and that expanded when Equinox came to town with the Item Shop overhaul. Companions, toys, and gnog packs were among the many changes. A great feature added to the game was the creation of enchanted gear. Our Winged Helm, Cheetah Boots, and Kangaroo Boots, for example, now have their enchantment transferred to your character instead of taking up a socket spot on your gear.

Spooky Town rolled in during October along with new village projects, and not just a couple projects but a huge whack of projects. We are able to upgrade many of our current village stations but many other new projects were added. From statues to dummies to vaults, this patch had a lot going on. Speaking of vaults, the number of person vaults expanded…anyone have them all yet?

Bevyn’s Coille came to us in November with the increased level cap and a challenging high level zone. The added quests gave us the start to The Voyage through the Blighted Isles, and a great introduction of what is coming our way. It also helped develop my jumping skills, and my need to get slimed. For the crafters, Legendary Crafting brought a new challenge. It is a long tough road, but I salute those who have taken on that journey.

Finally, the year ended with the return of Grinchta, and all those hats…or as I call them…toques. So whether you were around for the entire year or joined us part way through, the Otters have been busy busy little otters. I have enjoyed 2015 and I hope you have too. However, by the looks of things to come, 2016 looks to be a great year in and around Ardent.


From The Sneaky Scribbler (US 2):

Last Tuesday in Ardent this hapless toon had to be rushed to the hospital to have his sickle removed from his face. He was sent to the Master Gatherer in Ethos to gain a bit more experience.

You Said It:

Sometimes it’s best just to nod and smile:
“I can make things out of marshmellows.” –Anna Thundering (US2)

Just plain stinky:
“Attention everyone! I have no pants!!!” –Stinkypants (US2)

On starting over:
“I am so confused. So I renounce my speaking at all.” –Casplina (US1)

On the hazards of raising sheep (US2):
Vukovrag: Dracos, wait until they start asking for caviar and Dom Perignon.
Dracos Noros: So long as they don’t whisper while im questing asking: “pardon me, do you have any Grey poupon?”
Dracos Noros: I’m uhh..literally digging up daisies and have to feed the flock, sorry.
Kalbrumesh: Guess thats better than pushing them up.

Easy for you to say:
“And I speak fluently syposki. Typoski* lol.” –Xeniaa (US2)


The Winners of the Grinchta’s Christmas Community Story Project, and The Story!

There were so many wonderful holiday contests in the month of December! We would dearly love to display them all here, but unfortunately there just isn’t room for them all in this edition of the Ledger. So I’d like to encourage everyone to peruse the EVENTS and CONTESTS Forum thread to see the many amazing creations our community came up with over the past few weeks.

In the meantime, we’d like to share with you the results of a wonderful community contest, one which was truly a collaborative effort, and great fun to watch as it unfolded.

The contest, organized and conceived by Bluerider of EU 2, tasked players on every server with creating a single story, sentence by sentence on the forums, without ever knowing when the deadline would be. It was a ticking timer that could go off at any time. It in fact lasted for three days, and what a turn out! The story became a 14 page forum thread with 136 sentence contributions!

The winners, somewhat like a round of musical chairs, were those who were the last three players to make viable entries before the thread was closed. And they were:

    First Place: Omnigmaprime
    Second Place: NighwalkerTester
    Third Place: RedEye

And now please enjoy the final result! Here is the story, printed in its entirety:

GRINCHTA’S CHRISTMAS CAROL: A VILLAGERS & HEROES COMMUNITY PROJECT – Written By:

Queeny, Majenta, Avenian, Snow, Puzzler, Selia, IrishElf, Louanna, Red Wizard, Feljay, Catona, Deadliez, NightWalkerTester, Wait, Layla Littlenymph, Omnigmaprime, Myst, Kaydee, ScarletTester, and RedEye.

It was a cold, clear morning when Grinchta left his tent and stumbled upon a bright red package with a fancy green ribbon. He picked it up and peeked around to see if anyone was still there. He looked at it curiously, then gave it a tentative shake. Grinchta noticed a shiny Christmas label on the curious package that read, “To: Damon From: Santa.”

Whilst mumbling that he doesn’t know any ”Damon,” he snatched the shiny Christmas label from the package. He put the package to his ear and listened closely. He could hear a tiny voice coming from the inside of the package. The sound gave him a strange unknown feeling in the whole body. “Could this be… empathy?” He shrugged in disgust.

He straightened out the crumpled shiny label, licked it and stuck it back on the package and tossed it aside. It landed under the Christmas tree nearby. Suddenly, a terrifying scream came from the box: “AAAAAAAAAAAARGGGGGGGG!” But he ignored it and realized he was hungry so left the area to make a sandwich. Even though the sandwich was delicious, he kept thinking about this loud gift under the tree. He didn’t take time for desert because he thought the gift may actually have something deliciously sweet to eat inside . . . hummm.

He approached the box with a sharp knife in hand. When he got near the box, slipped, fell and stabbed his own foot. The bleeding was uncontrollable. Then the little gift popped open, and a brilliant flash of green light came out! “Help me!” Grinchta yelled into the green light.

The green light stopped swirling and was finally still, you could see it was a tiny pointy eared character all dressed in green and red standing there with a concerned look on its face. “Damon,” he asked? “Could that be you Damon,” the little elf said while wrapping the green ribbon around Grinchta’s foot. Grinchta couldn’t say or do anything, he was totally mesmerized by the sight of that little elf.

Hmmm, he wondered most wonderfully, “How would this elf taste dipped in egg nog or baked in fruit cake?” He went inside his tent to fetch some eggs to cook the elf with. But the elf had other plans. He quietly crept to the back of the tent and slipped inside unnoticed. The elf look around in the tent to see where he could hide when he suddenly noticed the Christmas present was still in the tent and very quietly jumped into the package and reached for the lid when suddenly …there was a loud noise, thump, and a whimper like the elf had never heard before.

One of Grinchta’s minions grabbed him by the throat. His last thought was: why is he attacking me, he looks just like me (the minion that grabbed him was an angry Christmas elf!) With the good elf out of the way, the angry Christmas elf hid in the box. Grinchta happily stomped over to the box while balancing two eggs in each hand when suddenly he tripped.

“Oof!” he said, and watched his eggs roll all the way over to the box. An ever so slight ‘tink’ sound was heard and Grinchta saw one egg begin to ooze out on the floor and under the box followed by a strange voice that said, “whaaaa”!? Grinchta got up, shook the snow off him and went over to inspect the ooze, tasting some a bit.

Suddenly the angry elf jumped from the box and began running around smashing everything in sight; Grinchta was shocked and most certainly not amused so he puffed out his chest, scratched his head and thought of what to do because this elf wasn’t the one he put in there, he was certain of it! Grinchta began running after the angry elf which soon became a game of cat and mouse.

began running after the angry elf which soon became a game of cat and mouse.
Meanwhile, inside the box, you could hear something moaning…as the friendly elf began to awaken. The elf started singing Elvis tunes to anyone within hearing. The singing enraged Grinchta so much he bellowed at the top of his lungs “Stop that singing!” and smashed his fist into the table. The enraged Grinchta only made the Elf giggle and she ran and hid while continuing to sing Elvis songs.

Little elf sings, “I’ll have a blue…blue…Christmas without you.” The Elf next taunts Grinchta with Jailhouse rock. The Grinchta freezes, the Christmas tree and all around now looked blue, and Grintchta could not understand how that little elf knew that blue was his favorite color! But now Grinchta feared he’d be wearing blue in jail for chasing the Elf.

Grinchta turns and looks at the floor near the tent opening and sees two elves standing there, side by side, and wonders if he’s seeing double. “Ok, which one of you two is the evil twin?” he asked, puzzled. Little did Grinchta know they were actually triplets, and while these two kept him occupied, the third elf was sneaking some of the stolen presents away from Grinchta’s collection.

This third clever elf, named, “Clept Toes,” knew some hiding places that the other elves did not know about, because he had been stealing other things from Grinchta to hide in those secret places, too. The two elves looked at each other and then at Grinchta multiple times, not saying a word.

Once all the presents Grinchta had stolen had been retrieved, Clept Toes let out the secret bird whistle (to the tune of Santa Claus is back in Town) to let his brothers know the job was finished. Whilst all this was happening inside the tent, outside were weird things happening too: A storm was brewing outside, but not the kind of storm anyone in the tent had ever seen before.

Grinchta pushed the two elves out of the way and plodded outside to see what this new commotion was. He was flabbergasted to see it was literally raining cats and dogs, with an otter or two for good measure. Then suddenly he saw two white lights and he could also hear tiny bells, the laughter of voices and even singing.

But, he was mistaken, for as he drew nearer to the lights, he saw they were red, not white and upon further inspection, they were attached to the noses of two disgruntled looking reindeer before him. The Reindeer snorted and looked around as they heard a voice coming from the red glow.

“We have come for you Grinchta!” said Rudolph, as he stood beside his imposingly large father Randolph, both of which could immediately tell they had come to the right place, as even now, Grinchta was wearing Santa’s pants, Santa himself having fallen victim of their merciless attacker. Rudolph’s words had no effect on Grinchta though, as he was too busy staring with confusion at the sack moving behind the reindeer; usually full of presents it was currently filled with Santa himself, who had taken refuge in the sack to hide his cold, pantless legs! “Ooof! Ugh!” Grinchta cried out as Randolph and Rudolph tackled him to the ground.

Santa hopped forward in the sack and began trying to wrestle his stolen pants off of Grinchta’s hairy legs while he was pinned down by the brave reindeer duo. But, as Grinchna was nobody’s fool, and had been taken by surprise, he always had a backup plan for occasions just such as this.

“Someone bring me a keyboard,” screamed Santa as he tugged at the pants. “I’m not at all sure I like where this plot twist is heading!” Santa tried to type but got confused and gave the keyboard to Mrs. Santa. Mrs Santa typed out, “LOL”, but then realized she was in the wrong chat channel so she quickly typed, “wc.”

She blamed Red for her wc. Santa realized that he wouldn’t be able to wear his pants again after Grinchta had them on, so he found another pair in his sleigh he had been saving for a special gift. Santa quickly wriggled into his spare pants then laughed a hearty “ho-ho-ho” as he handed Mrs. Santa the wc jar.
While Santa was putting on his “special gift” pants, Grinchta squirmed away from the reindeer and ran into the woods leaving the reindeer, Santa, Mrs. Santa, and the elves (yes all three of them) standing there wondering what just happened!

Rudolph moved away from a large steaming pile and said, “Sorry.” One of the elves walked over to the pile and said “hmm looks like dog sh. . .” and was suddenly interrupted by a smack from Mrs. Clause who said, “Don’t even go there!”

Meanwhile, deep in the woods, the normal silence was interrupted by the cracking of branches as Grinchta charged between the trees, ending in a large thud as he ran head-first into a low hanging branch. And then suddenly everything went silent. Later…much later, Grinchta awoke and shook all over feeling nothing but the pounding in his head.

Rubbing his head gingerly, the ringing in his ears slowly subsided and he could hear the giggling of Christmas faeries from the treetops above him. As Grinchta sat there nursing his wounds and wounded pride, and listening to the incessant fairies he noticed it had started to snow big giant snowflakes.

But the snowflakes were not falling from the sky, they were coming from the faerie of cheer, who was now hovering above Grinchta’s bruised head. The fairie of cheer seemed intent on burying Grinchta in the giant snowflakes. But Grinchta had put up with quite enough at this point. Grinchta stood up and let out a loud yell: “GERONIMOOooooo!” He climbed to the top of the Christmas tree and lept off. For a split second, on the way down he wondered about the life, universe, everything…

For some reason the number “42” floated through his head for a second, but moments later all thoughts were replaced with “ow” as he landed on his head in the exact same place the tree branch had hit him earlier!

Meanwhile, Frosty the snowglobe maker had been watching this whole scene unfold. He grabbed two handfuls of clay and quickly began to form a model of Grinchta in his crumpled heap, wanting to capture this moment to place in his next snowglobe. The outcome was not good, at all. For in his haste, Frosty had not grabbed handfuls of clay, but two handfuls of mashed potato from his dinner plate. And being half-blind he’d mistakenly used the gravy as snow.

Sighing at his missed opportunity as Grinchta stumbled off in a daze, Frosty licked his fingers and finished his now-slightly-Grinchta-shaped dinner. Santa shook his head and turned away from his Naughty or Nice screen unhappy with how Grinchta has been treating the residents of his Lair. Then quick as a wink Santa had a marvelous idea!

So Santa took out his trusty pencil and magic tablet and began to write. But Santa’s writing was instantly interrupted by a pop-up ad on the tablet for a brand new game called Flappy Otter and try as he might, he could not fight the temptation to play it! He settled into his favorite chair, a glass of eggnog and plate of cookies at his side, and happily played Flappy Otter until the wee hours of the morning.

Wait, Santa is supposed to make games, not play them! Santa played so long that he started to nod off. After being awoken by an angry villager scolding him (who has been put on his naughty list) Santa went back to enjoying Floppy Otter. Pausing momentarily to wonder why they changed the name of the game from Flappy to Floppy while he was asleep, Santa decided that the villager was probably right to admonish him for such laziness during the busiest time of the year, and so he headed back to the toy workshop.

Santa stood there in the doorway trying to remember what he’d been doing; it seemed like it was something important! He headed to the kitchen to make a fresh pot of coffee. He enjoyed the flappy floppy Otter game so much he grabbed the tablet on the way out the door.

But instead of playing that game, he opened paint and started to draw, which resulted in 4 different presents: a toy soldier, a train set, a dollhouse and a chemistry set. Finally, he noticed after what seemed to be hours, the coffee had finished brewing. But before he could take a sip, the Head Elf ran up to him in a panic to tell him that Krampus Kringle seems to have escaped from his lair and might be roaming around in Ardent!

With visions of coffee beans dancing around, the cup he was holding fell to the ground. Santa wondered what could go wrong next, and, as if on cue, the Head Elf continued with the bad news that Krampus also seems to have learned a thing or two from Grinchta before his escape and has somehow managed to steal the presents out of everybody’s advent calendars for the last few days.

While Santa was being briefed by the head elf, one of the other elves cleaned up the spilled coffee and brought Santa a fresh cup of hot chocolate. But Santa knew that hot chocolate wasn’t going to fix this dire situation; he knew he had to come up with a plan, “but what!?” he stewed as Mrs. Clause gave him a pat on the shoulder.

It was then that Santa noticed one of the elves looked very strange, much taller than usual, and then he realized it was Grinchta in an elf costume, for the multiple bumps on his head earlier in the day had caused amnesia in the great brute and some quick thinking elves had persuaded him that he was one of their workshop colleagues.

While in another location, we know not where, Krampus watched as Santa was occupied, the dark elves feuded, and what is this, the tent on Grinchta’s mountaintop has been deserted… and thus an evil plan began to form. As it turned out, Krampus was not the best when it came to choosing a secret location to spy from, and the elves began to wonder why he was crouching behind a small shrubbery not more than 20 feet away, cackling to himself quietly.

Not only Krampus isn’t very smart, because I can see the white hood of the Sugar Plum King moving behind Krampus. As Mrs Clause was reminding Santa that all good girls and boys of a magical land know that the spirit of Christmas is in the giving and not receiving a loud explosion was heard in the Grinchta lair! Having set off fireworks as a distraction, one of the elves moved quickly towards Santa to inform him of their not-so-stealthy spies and Santa began to form a plan that would put the temporarily good Grinchta to good use.

Luckily the Head Elf had seen Sugar Plum too, and know it is a wizard, he very very quietly whispered into Santa’s ears: careful what you say, there is a wizard who can see all. Santa wrote a note detailing his plan and handed it to the Head Elf to spread the word to the rest of the workshop, instructing them to casually clear a path between Grinchta and the two barely-hidden spies.

But unfortunately, someone didn’t clean up properly the spilled coffee, so he slipped, the note fell and…chaos ensued. But only for a moment, since Santa made copies of the note with the super secret plan. But, unbenounced to those in Ardent town, Krumpus was heading directly toward them, with the sugar plum king, missile toe (the meanest of all) and jingle ding all in tow, all of which he had sprung himself after making his daring escape.

There was tension in the air, people of Ardent hid in tent and under bridges. But Santa and all his elves stood in front of the portal, trying to prevent the evil ones to go to Ardent. Of course going through the portal takes a while, when a whole band tries to get through it, so after few minutes everyone sat down and started to think about snacks before the confrontation.

Suddenly a bright light surrounded Santa and his elves and the evil followers of Grinchta were hurled backward deep into the Grinchta lair; it was … Sara Otter!!! Who just happens to be Sarah Otter’s evil twin! But as the twin had just restored order to Ardent and saved the elves, Santa wondered if he may have mixed them up on the naughty/nice list and hurriedly started an audit of Sarah Otter’s profile! It turns out, Sara’s profile had been hi-jacked, by a disgruntled elvin-archers group that had placed a malicious virus on their site in which she had recently visited: Old Obscure Movies No One Will Ever Guess.

Santa muttered to himself that Sarah should probably install a snowwall (much cooler than a firewall) to counter-attack future hi-jacking attempts and decided her and her twin probably both deserved gifts this year. Unfortunately, the whole situation could have been avoided, if only those poor poor archers were allowed to play as extras in the event zone, opposite Missile Toe.

Meanwhile, behind the bush, the plotters continue to plan their next move. But wait, that’s no bush, it’s a fungasite that had been asleep long enough to become covered in moss!

Then something strange happened as the cool winter air hit the fungasite, for millions of tiny spores shot off of the mold that encased it and all that were near began to laugh uncontrollably.

THE END



Red Baron classics now released on Steam!
January 7, 2016

Mad Otter is thrilled to announce that the classic games Red Baron 3D (1998) and Red Baron (1990) are now released on Steam! Return to the skies or explore them anew with this digital collection featuring the original Red Baron, Red Baron 3D, the Mission Builder and high-quality scans of the original manuals, maps and reference cards.

Several members of Mad Otter were part of the original team developing these games, and should you choose to buy these you help supporting all our work – Villagers & Heroes very much included. The Red Baron Pack can be purchased here: http://store.steampowered.com/app/263940



Patch 3.10.4
January 6, 2016

This small patch removes Grinchta’s Lair, and contains various bugfixes and improvements.

For the full patch notes, see the forum thread.



What’s coming in 2016 – Part 1
January 4, 2016

2015 was a wonderful, slightly grueling, and ultimately rewarding year for the game, and we are confident that 2016 will prove to be an even more exhilarating chapter in the ever evolving saga that is V&H. We would not exist without our outstanding player community, and we sincerely thank you for all the support and generosity you have shown us for so long now. We hope you will continue this exciting journey with us into the New Year!

So just what does lie ahead? Instead of providing a general overview of the next twelve months, we thought instead that we’d focus on the particulars of the next three months, and we will continue to release these detailed quarterly updates throughout the year. For an overview of what we have in store for the first part of 2016, have a look at the Ardent Monthly Ledger!

Here are a few highlights:

  • Red Baron classics releasing on Steam! Return to the skies as Mad Otter are releasing the classic Red Baron games the 7th of January on Steam.
  • New high level content! Explore the Copse of the Treants in the second part of The Voyage Through The Blighted Isles.
  • Redesigned combat mechanics! With better audiovisual feedback, combo attacks and more, combat will be more interesting than ever before.
  • Bug fixes! We will dedicate time specifically to fix existing bugs within the game, getting rid of frustrating issues that have been around for a long time.
  • Item shop expansion! Introducing weekly updates to the shop with new content, expanding the shop more than ever before.

…and much more! Click here to read it all.