It has been a crazy month, but the ATLAST recap of the February Devlogs is finally here! We got updates on the new nation system, New Nauru, and itemization. You can read the original devlogs here, but keep reading for our recap with everything you need to know, Q&A with the Elders, as well as our thoughts on the update!

Nations

  • Nations have a maximum of 5 towns.
    • This discourages “shitter” towns that were small camps intended to collect biome specific resources.
  • When you found a town, you will start with an area of 9×9 chunks (compared to the previous 3×3)
    • Claiming land for a town will be 5-10x cheaper, so the price to start a town will not change significantly
    • Towns cannot be founded in another nation’s territory (more on this later)
  • Proximity tax is being replaced by a hard requirement of at least 350 blocks between towns.
    • The requirement also applies to outposts (more on this later)
  • Nations will be able to designate one of their towns as a capital city.
    • By default, the capital city will be the first town founded in a nation, but players will have the ability to select a different town in their nation if they have multiple
    • Other towns within 100 chunks of the capital will get a 75% discount on tax

Territory

  • The Territory System aims to bring back combat at a level between higher-stake sieges and random kills, salvaging the best parts of what used to be biome claims.
    • During war, players can now be killed multiple times, replacing the previous one-kill-per-day system.
  • Territory is expanded in 5×5 chunks through outposts, which you can place adjacent to your town claim or your outpost territory.
    • Outposts will be similar to guard towers in that they are auto-build structures that you can place
    • Nations at war can destroy their enemies’ outposts, diminishing the other nation’s territory
      • Attacks on outposts are meant to be more spontaneous than sieges, so alert systems (if implemented at all) will be short notice
  • Your nation’s territory passively generates resources, which will probably be biome dependent
  • Similarly to how players are notified when they enter NPC towns, players will be notified when entering territory in the action bar (above the hot bar)
    • Nations will also be able to customize an entry message
  • Nations you are at war with cannot get block drops from anything within your territory
    • In the future, this may change so that only you and your allies can collect resources in your territory.
  • Towns and territory will be marked on the Dynmap
  • Changes to relics will be included in Nation Devlog #2

Q&A with Wizardteepot & Terryn

The following answers are paraphrased based on a conversation in voice chat.

What is the cost of of buying outposts? Will the cost remain constant, or increase as your territory expands? Will there be upkeep taxes for outposts?

  • Outposts be similar to guard towers in multiple ways. The cost of purchasing one will remain constant and will not scale with the number of outposts you already own. Additionally, the price will be similar to that of a guard tower. Upkeep will be small, around 10-15 gems a day.
  • However, there will be a “branching system” limitation. Outposts that are not adjacent to a town’s claim will need to be placed adjacent to two outposts of a “lower tier.”

Can you confirm that towns of the same nation are still subject to the 350 block distance requirement, and that this distance is from the edge of the town’s border?

  • The distance requirement is measured from the edge of the town and still applies between towns of the same nation.

Does this distance requirement apply to an outpost and town of the same nation, or can you put outposts between your towns?

  • No, you can place outposts between your towns and expand territory in that area.

Is there a distance requirement between different nations’ outposts or can they be placed right next to each other?

  • Whether outposts are within the same nation or different nations, there must be at least 2 chunks of distance between them.

The changes in this devlog seem to be encouraging nations to be more centralized in one location. Can you tell us more about what kind of thinking went behind this change and what inspired you?

  • This question is a bit multi-faceted; historically, nations don’t just get founded when they have towns spread out so far all over the place, they’re a conglomeration of towns that are close together and have similar ideals. For Diplomacy, we figured it would be both cooler and easier for players to have all of their towns together, to show one large territory on the DynMap, but also it would be easier to attend Grand Feasts/Sieges if you leave your Capital and have to go to one of your edge towns. Economically, we want towns to take more pride in the infrastructure of their towns, and have as little “Shitter Towns” (as Tyr lovingly refers to them as) as physically possible. Lastly, the hope is that with nations being a bit closer together, it would be easier for newer players to learn their way around Atlas and different Nations, rather than always having to memorize what nation had which towns in what biomes.
  • Originally, nations were going to be forced to cluster their towns. However, we decided against that due to the builds and towns that had already been developed by veteran players. We also didn’t want large nations to split to form multiple nations that acted as one nation (e.g. Rivia 1 and Rivia 2) to circumvent the mechanics. So instead, we chose a system where players could transfer their builds for a price and incentivized nations to place their towns closer together through tax reduction.

Previously, it was mentioned during the State of the Server that old towns were guaranteed their old land, so that they could transfer their old builds without having to worry about another nation taking that location. Is there any new specifics that you can share with us about what kind of guarantees we have?

  • We have no new specifics; as we have done in the past, nations will get first dibs on their old land. Any conflicts about reclaiming will be resolved on a case-by-case basis by the staff team.

New Nauru

New Nauru is coming! Gone with the old starter town where all Atlas players started, and in with the revamp. It has expanded greatly in size, almost putting the old town to shame.

Sketch and screenshot of current build progress of New Nauru from the devlog

  • The Elders were accused of terrorism for the Evermoon Bombing but brushed off these accusations. They had been too busy supervising the construction of New Nauru to care, and a year later their hard (albeit politically negligent) work paid off. New Nauru is fabulously complete!
  • Although, not all glitter is gold as political opposition has arisen. Three new factions are raising their fists to the Elders; The Sons of Drakmar; The Argent Coalition; and the Magisters. 
    • The Sons of Drakmar believe that neutrality in the War of Athera will be New Nauru’s downfall, and that the Elders should take the side of the Vantian Empire. The Vantian Empire, they believe, will bring the city an economic boom (not the other kind of boom..) and indulge the Naurulian Empire in their newly achieved spoils of war after their victory in the war. 
    • The Argent Coalition insist the Elders spend their tax money willy-nilly, appeasing the rich and leaving scraps for the poor. They demand that someone babysit their alleged reckless government spending, and to remove the Obelisk to stop refugees from raising their already egregiously high taxes.
    • The Magisters say that all Earthly activities are simply trivial issues, and a larger threat looms in the background. Gone with spending money on physical causes, they believe that the Elders should dedicate all resources to aid the Void-affected places. They too believe in the halting of Obelisk travel, as it could add more fuel to the void problem, and that Shen magic is the primary root of the problem.
  • With a new city comes new quests! Players will return to the Elders pleading to help locate the brutal criminal haunting their city. They will have to infiltrate the factions to put a stop to it once and for all. In addition, there will be plenty of new unfamiliar characters, quests, and rewards to explore.

Itemization

Wizardteepot’s new plugin, AtlasLegendaryItems, will be replacing his old plugin, UniqueQuestRewards 2.0.

Item Categories

There are 4 main types of items that players can acquire on Atlas:

  • Active: weapons and tools with special abilities
  • Passive: items that can be left in your inventory and grant you passive bonuses or are activated by certain conditions
  • On-Use: trinkets that give you special abilities upon using them
  • Set: dungeon armors

Attunement

  • There will not be a limit to the number of legendary items that players can carry with them.
  • When not in combat, players can open a GUI and attune to up to two specific items at a time, allowing you to use their abilities. Effectively, this only allows you to use two legendary items at a time.
    • For example, if you are only attuned to Karag’s Sabre, you can use any Karag’s Sabre that you acquire, but you wouldn’t be able to use a different legendary item.
  • An item that you are not attuned to will not allow you to use its power and may even have consequences.
  • Ajax’s Attribute API that was used previously to add special qualities to smeltery and tannery items will be utilized to add bonuses to legendary items.

Q&A with Wizardteepot

To clarify, attunement only applies for legendary items?

  • Correct. The idea is that Legendary Items are borderline overpowered, or have the potential to be that way, so we want to encourage the usage of them, while also setting a limit to how many can be used at a time.

The Itemization devlogs have been showing us a transition towards more categorization and standardization with the rarity types in the previous devlog and the types of items in this devlog. What motivated this change and why do you think it’s important?

  • To be clear, both systems will still be taking place. As Ajax mentioned in the first Itemization Log, the categorization of items into different rarities will be spread across all systems of Atlas, from anything like basic Minecraft items which will have “common” white names, to smeltery ingots/armors/weapons which will have “uncommon” colored names, to Legendary Items which will obviously have “legendary” colored names. My devlog about itemization was because we have also mentioned in other devlogs about reworking the way rewards for various systems like quests and dungeons have worked. My job had basically been to come up with a ton of different ideas for items and armor sets, along with the brainstorming of other devs, that can be utilized as drops from different bosses in dungeons or from quests, like you might find in a dungeon crawler like Diablo.
  • The intent of doing this, both the rarity change and the item category change is so that we can more closely define Atlas as an RPG type game, but also to standardize some of the things we were already doing. As you might have noticed on previous iterations of Atlas, Smeltery Items already had their unique colors for names, along with items from other plugins having unique colors for names. We want to try to start standardizing the way a lot of our content looks across all our different plugins so that Atlas could feel a bit more cohesive as a server despite it’s multitude of ideas and design concepts. Furthermore, as Ajax pointed out in his item rarity devlog, Minecraft already uses colors to determine item rarity (white for common items/yellow for things like Elytra, ect). This change will bring us more in line with what Minecraft already has!

With the new texture pack, are legendary items going to have unique textures?

  • Hopefully, that’s the plan!

You mentioned that using an item that you aren’t attuned to can harm you. Can you tell us more about that?

  • Unfortunately, there’s nothing really set in stone for this at the moment, but the intention is for it to be something along the lines of negative potion effects, to the loss of health, or something else that could seriously inhibit play from misuse of these items.

Will there be any clear indicator in game as to what category each item belongs to or will these categories be unlabeled and up to the player to know?

  • Rarities, as described in Ajax’s devlog will be tied to the color of the name of the item, so hopefully that one will be a bit clearer. If not, there might also be a small tagline in the lore of the line that simply says like “Epic” or “Legendary” or something like that.
  • Item types, as described in my last devlog, should be mostly straight forward (set items only applying to armor sets, active items applying to weapons/tools), but yes, each one with have a tagline, also in the lore, that says “passive item,” “on-use item,” etc. Furthermore, the lore of the item will have both an actual fragment of lore about the item, on top of the item’s intended use, so players should be able to know what the item does at a quick glance.

Discord Recap

After the devlog was published, the Elders answered some of the community’s questions in the Atlas Discord. Here is what we learned:

  • Tyrriel hinted that enchanting will be in next month’s devlog.
  • The size of Athera (the map) will remain the same at around 12,000 x 12,000 blocks as previously stated
  • Netherite will be used for some legendary items, but we don’t know how it will be incorporated into smeltery if at all.
  • Legendary bows and crossbows will exist.
  • There are currently no plans to change vanilla tipped arrows, although Wizardteepot has an idea for a bow involving lingering potion effects.
  • There was a running joke that eggs would be banned due to LittleTengu’s notorious spamming of them previously, however the elders were trolling and eggs will not be banned.

Final Thoughts

The changes to nations in this devlog are a game changer! The Elders have really re-examined the nation system from the ground up, and it will really change Atlas forever. One of the issues that many new players who started their own nation faced was not being able to afford taxes. Under the new system, land will be significantly less expensive, which will make it a lot easier for them to claim a decently sized area of land to build their town without going bankrupt. Previously on Atlas, most nations with multiple towns chose to scatter their towns across Athera in order to have access to different materials that were dependent on biome. However, I believe that with this change, many smaller nations will choose to cluster their towns due to the tax reduction incentive. For larger nations, taxes were often not a major issue so they may decide to continue spreading out their towns and build even larger ones due to the cheaper tax.

A nation can only found five towns, and as a result, each town will be more meaningful and carry more weight. I predict that this limit will mean that we won’t see as many “shitter towns” or outpost towns that are founded to collect certain biome-dependent materials. In addition to not being able to get block drops from another nation’s territory, this could reinvigorate the player economy for biome-dependent items.

A criticism of the past war system on Atlas was that there wasn’t very much incentive to start a war. Winning a war against an active nation would usually cost more than the rewards, making it not worth it. However, the territory system could bring border conflicts between nations and as a result, war.

The Elders and builders have been hyping up New Nauru for months. They told us it was the largest NPC town to date, but I have to admit that I didn’t expect it to be this massive! The new renovation looks incredible and I can’t wait to explore the new capital. I’m really looking forward to the new storyline and role-play events that the future has to offer.

With the second Itemization devlog, we continue to see a trend toward standardization of items. Many of the friends that I invited to Atlas left the server mainly because they felt overwhelmed by all the custom aspects of the server. I think this change will make it easier for new players on Atlas and make it more manageable to understand the different systems.

Attunement is an interesting alternative to a hard limit on the number of legendary items a player can use, and I’m here for it. This makes it possible to use different legendary items depending on the circumstance rather than having to retrieve them from your base or personal coffers.

We look forward to the new devlog tonight, which we know will include enchanting and likely magic. Keep your eyes out for our article on the March devlog!

If you missed our article on last month’s devlog, check it out here. You can get notifications for ATLAST content in your own Discord by following the #📢-atlast-announcements channel in the Rivia discord here.

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