This is going to be another huge patch -- the fine folks at Icarus don't seem to do anything by halves -- scheduled for release sometime in Q2 of this year. (We will, of course, be watching for an exact date.) There was quite a bit to see and hear, so follow along after the jump to take a look at what is on the way to the Wasteland.
One of the biggest elements of the update will be the addition of Blood Sports. The bankers of Fallen Earth are out to make a little more money, and they are going to make it by pitting clones against one another in four different styles of PvP. Don't worry, though, they won't put you at risk too directly. To join up, simply register your DNA with the bankers, and they'll generate a clone that you control remotely. You can then choose a type of match based on several factors and style it to your preference: location by sector, shorter or longer matches, group or solo play, and so on. Once you're in line for a match, off you go to do your own thing while you wait your turn -- don't worry, you'll receive a notice when your turn comes up, and be able to transport directly to the match.
If you're a fan of team play, check out Capture the Flag, a familiar form of 8v8 PvP with an added twist for the lucky flag runner: you can use the flag as a weapon. So don't be afraid to start swinging the flag if anyone gets too close! Assault is the other team-based Blood Sport, with one team running a gauntlet of monsters, explosions, and more while the other team endeavors to stop them. The 8-man teams switch places at the end of each round, so if the opposing team managed to stop you, prepare to enjoy some revenge!
Are you more of an every-man-for-himself player? Register your DNA and jump in line for Deathmatch and Survival. In Deathmatch, you endeavor to rack up the most kills in the 16-man group, gaining points for each kill as well as other bonuses. Survival is exactly what it sounds like: your goal is to stay alive the longest while killing the other 15 players in the arena. Since they all have the same goal, it's not going to be the easiest thing ever.
If PvP isn't your thing, you'll want to head out toward Deadfall instead of hanging around the bankers. Everyone's been hard at work on the terraforming towers in that area, and you'll find much more to explore in that area in the form of Deadfall Point. We're sure you know what comes along with that: a shiny new level cap. That's right, this patch will bring an increased level cap of 50, six new instances, and 130 new missions to help you gain level 50. The Fallen Earth team has also added brand new crafting recipes, armor, weapons -- as well as new creatures to use the weapons on.
Thanks to everyone's hard work, this area between Sectors one and two is now livable, but it didn't emerge unscathed. Familiar creatures such as prairie chickens and wolves will have a new look in the form of radiation burns and new mutations, and the five settlements in the area are victims of their surroundings as well. Another victim of radiation is an old familiar foe: Shiva's Favored. Things aren't so simple, though -- before you plan to start killing check out the new missions, because there's a lot to learn about Shiva's Favored, not to mention the LifeNet facility in the area.
The patch doesn't stop there, though. Remember the graphical upgrade from January? Work has continued on graphics behind the scenes, and you're going to like what you see. Upgrades continue to come along, with this patch bringing an exciting new ability for the developers to sculpt the terrain: rather than simply stretching flat land upwards into a hill shape, for example, the land can be designed with a bit more control and realism. You'll notice a new ecosystem as well as further terrain upgrades, and all of the changes will be global so you can enjoy them no matter where in the Wasteland you are.
Finally, we have what many players will consider one of the most exciting additions to come with this patch: new mounts. Your first introduction to the wildlife in Fallen Earth probably involved being pecked to death by a Prairie Chicken, and now it's time to get a little of your own back by gaining a Prairie Chicken mount (feel free to ride the thing over various cliffs and into walls if you find the creatures especially irritating). If you worry about being laughed at while trotting through Embry on a giant mutant chicken, fear not. Spend some time in Deadfall helping out some new allies, and you can earn a Blight Wolf mount -- no worries about laughter while you're looking down at someone while holding the reins on one of those.
We think you'll agree that this patch will contain something for everyone, even before seeing detailed patch notes. With new content for both PvE and PvP, a level cap increase, cosmetic upgrades, new mounts, and lots of new crafting recipes, you'll find something new and exciting to check out no matter where in the Wasteland you are. While "Q2" isn't the most specific date available, it does let us know for certain that the patch isn't far off, so we'll be keeping a close watch for more information.
Thanks so much to Dave for his time!