DDO Update 12: Vaults of the Artificers Hands-On Preview

Updated Thu, Oct 27, 2011 by jeffprime

ddo update 12: vaults of the artificers preview

Update 11 added Artificers and House Cannith to Dungeons and Dragons Online. Now Turbine is adding new gameplay and other improvements to DDO in Update 12: Vaults of the Artificers. Yours truly got to sit down with DDO’s very own Fernando Paiz, Executive Producer, and Erik Boyer, Producer to get a hands-on impression of DDO Update 12: Vaults of the Artificer.

Challenges in DDO Update 12: Vaults of the Artificer

The main focus of DDO Update 12 is the new Challenges that players can undertake. These Challenges are designed not in the usual story-focused manner of normal quests, but rather in a more popcorn, arcade-like style. Turbine first tried this type of gameplay when they created Euphonia's Challenge: Treasure of the Crystal Cove for their fifth anniversary. They’ve been created to allow players who have 15-20 minutes to kill to do something fun, try to beat their previous high scores, and to get some xp and loot in the bargain. When Update 12 releases in mid-November, there will be four Challenges:

  • Dr. Rushmore's Mansion: Behind the Door
  • Dr. Rushmore's Mansion: Moving Targets
  • Kobold Island: Kobold Chaos
  • Kobold Island: The Disruptor
ddo update 12: vaults of the artificers preview
Fighting a boss in Dr. Rushmore's mansion.

Challenges are repeatable with the only limit being the number of Daily Challenge tokens that a player has. To obtain these tokens, players need to talk to Kariya ir’Vannis, located in House Cannith along with the Challenges. VIP players will get additional tokens. Each day, one Challenge will be available for players to get tokens to. The tokens do not have an expiration date, so you can save them up for use at a later time. Players will also be able to buy additional tokens from the DDO store. Free-to-play players will want to log in every day to talk to the token NPC to grab the free tokens and save them up. If players want full access to every Challenge on a daily basis, they can also purchase the Challenge pack. Challenges also cover almost the entire level range, ranging from level 4 to 20.

Gameplay in the DDO Update 12 Challenges

There are four Challenges, which means that there are four maps. Each Challenge also has three rules variants, which tweak some rules and have optional objectives. The Challenges can also be played on Epic level. All of the Challenges are timed, so you’ll need to keep moving. Within each Challenge, there are objectives that you’ll need to achieve. As you progress through the Challenge, you accumulate points. When you get enough points, you get a star. You must get at least one star to get any xp and items. For each star you get, you receive Favor with House Cannith. Between DDO Update 11 and DDO Update 12, players will now be able to get enough Favor to unlock the Artificer class to play. You can track your progress in the Challenges by opening up your Adventure Compendium, where a new tab has been created for Challenges.

ddo update 12: vaults of the artificers preview
The new Challenge tab in your Adventure Compendium.

Once you enter a Challenge, you will need to work fast to achieve the objectives. To help you out, you can get powerups that will drop during the Challenge or you can get one from a Cannith Supply Vault. You can only access a single Cannith Supply Vault per Challenge, and you will need a token to do so. To get the powerup, you just run through it. My personal favorite was Quad Damage. Sweet. You can also receive time extensions whilst in a Challenge.

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