I may elaborate further on some of this stuff before release, but for now here is a quick preview of what to expect in v1.20:
Players will be finally be able to travel to the Arctic North and pickup where the main storyline left off. The Arctic is unlike anything else players have encountered in the game thus far. From the unique atmosphere to the increased focus on exploration, this area will challenge players in new ways.
The Warrior's Crypt
For the first time players will be treated to story content, quests and areas to explore that haven't been created by me!
Spiff (tenkuu), NEStalgia's lead tester and expert coder has created a completely new set of side quests geared towards hardcore NEStalgia players. Most of the focus of this new content is in an area called "The Warrior's Crypt", and takes place on the tiny island just west of the Colosseum. This area is by far the most difficult yet - both in and out of battle. Players who like their RPGs brutal and unforgiving need look no further.
The goal from the beginning with NEStalgia was to keep things simple. With this objective still very much in mind, v1.20 will slightly expand the modifiable character statistics. Furthermore, players will actually be able to personalize their character by choosing from an array of special class bonuses.
For example: When creating a character players will now choose their "Moon Blessing", which gives bonuses to new statistics such as elemental resistances and bonus damage ratings. Furthermore, upon hitting milestone levels (10, 20, 30 etc.) each class will be presented with one of three upgrade options. Called "Milestone Boosts", these upgrades range from various stat bonuses to new Spells and Skills.
Players who have been clamoring for a Monk class will definitely love the Ninja's unarmed ass-kicking ways. Ninjas have a really fun ability set unlike anything other classes currently have. Two examples:
Vanish. Acts as a kind of single turn self-Mirage in battle, but the really cool part is the overworld function -- invisibility.
My personal favorite, the Five Point Exploding Heart Technique:
The Warlock is a very different type of caster. Using its own HP instead of MP to cast spells, the Warlock doesn't have many direct damage abilities. Instead the Warlock's magic is used to leech HP and MP reserves from foes back to the caster... or to even possess the target and cast your enemies' own spells against them.
I'll go more in depth on the Warlock in a future blog post!
The expanded statistics translate into even more types of available gear and abilities. Will your soldier sacrifice strong defensive gear for the sake of fire resistance? Will your Ranger go for a weapon that boosts general attack power or that gives a bonus to critical hits?
The Ardan Casino will also have a few extra surprises, including a surprisingly addictive version of 5-Card Draw. Any high-level Casino gear that you saved up for before will still be at the top tier of the v1.20 item pool... but that doesn't mean that you can't start saving up for the new stuff.
Last but not least, the level cap will be given a slight bump up to 32. Keep in mind that the Arctic is meant for level 26-30 players; if you've maxed out your character to 30 in v1.19 then you're already ahead of the game!
Private testing on NEStalgia v1.20 is already underway. I'm still somewhat occupied with work/family/vacation this month so I'm not going to bend over backwards to rush the release. You'll definitely be playing v1.20 sometime in August, but in the meantime all of you impatient NEStalgia fans ought to get outside and enjoy your summer!
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