Greetings, Console Adventurers!
This is Je-seok Jang, Head of Black Desert Game Design Department. Since our last discussions during the 1st Cross-Play anniversary and 2nd Anniversary for XBOX release, I’m sure many Adventurers are anxious to hear Console-specific news.
The staff here at Pearl Abyss would like to take this opportunity to thank our Console Adventurers for the support you’ve shown all this long and wish to repay your patience with a Console roadmap planned from September to December in 2021.
Here’s a short keyword introduction to get a better view of the upcoming update in each month:
|September||Life Skill Gear – Manos Update|
Season + Server, Vell - the Heart of the Ocean, Caphras Level 10, Node War/Conquest Update for Mediah/Valencia, Sycrakea
Mansion: Blue Mane Lion’s Manor, Dream Horse Doom, Guild Raid Khan - the Eye of the Ocean, Enhanced World Bosses
O’dyllita, La Orzeca - the ancient treasure, Fallen God’s Armor
So let’s get right down to the details: first, let’s talk about what to expect at the end of September!
I’m sure that many Adventurers have been waiting for this one. Manos gear is finally coming to Black Desert Console on the September 29th. Manos gear is the best gear for life skills that will no doubt be of enormous help to all the Life Skillers out there.
Summer Season and Season+
On September 29th, the current Summer Season will also come to an end.
To provide some context: when we first started discussing the date for Season servers, we discussed in length about when the right timing would be. Since Season’s PEN (V) Tuvala gears perform equally to TET (IV) Boss gears, it offered newer Adventurers an opportunity to catch up quickly. However, our concern was that we didn’t want current or veteran Adventurers to feel neglected, given how much effort they’ve put in to upgrading their character. At one point, we even considered only opening Tuvala gear that can be enhanced up to TET (IV).
Nonetheless, when we examined the data on the overall progression levels of previous Adventurers, we could clearly see that console scores were much higher than our initial expectations, especially when Console Adventurers generally have a shorter average gameplay time. It was a gratifying moment for us because it showed that Console Adventurers were truly enjoying the content that we worked on and were trying to get the most out of our game. We thank you again for the passion that you’ve shown us.
Based on such data, we concluded that it would be more beneficial to Black Desert Console, as a whole, to release the Season servers and provide the help needed for newer Adventurers. With this in the background, we opened Console’s very first Season server on June 29th.
All in all, we are generally happy with what we were able to achieve through the Season servers. The Season servers started out great as the number of new Adventurers significantly increased. However, there were some parts that left more to be desired for. We noticed that there were a lot of opinions from Adventurers regarding the difficulty in enhancing Tuvala gear as well as the difficulty in graduating from the Season servers.
Encouraged by what we were able to achieve through the Season servers and learning from what was lacking in the summer season, we also decided to launch the new “Season+” servers scheduled for October 13th, shortly after introducing Manos gears on September 29th.
One of the major changes in the Season+ server is that enhancement chances for Tuvala gear will be adjusted to make them easier to enhance. We’ve noticed that many Adventurers found it difficult to enhance to full PEN (V) Tuvala gear, so we’ve decided to adjust the enhancement chances to lower the hurdles.
Additionally, the unnecessarily varied Mediah region's monster loot will also be reorganized, and main quest rewards will be upgraded to give more valuable rewards. Specifically, Bashim Base & Desert Nagas will also drop better loot after the Valencia main questline and we're also adding the new pet "Lauren’s Fluffy" as a quest reward for Serendia main questlines to help Adventurers in the looting process.
Another ambitious update that we’ve been preparing is a new system to help newer Adventurers to settle into the main server after graduating from the Seasons.
Season+ server is different from its predcessor in that you can graduate early after 2 weeks. After graduation, Adventurers will also be provided with a [Growth Pass] that will give out tasks to help them adjust to the new climate in the normal servers and learn more about the different branches of content in Black Desert Console.
Growth Pass (In development)
▲ As this image was taken during development, it is displayed in Korean. This content will be translated to the supported languages before it releases, but the contents may be subject to change.
PEN (V) Tuvala gear have always been the epitome of the Season servers. Since these season gears will be carried on to the normal servers, we wanted to make sure that obtaining PEN (V) Tuvala gears was rewarding in the end. With this mind, we’ve implemented a new system where you can exchange the 7 parts of PEN (V) Tuvala gear for TET (IV) Boss gear. This TET (IV) Boss gear will not be tradable on the Central Market, but this gear will offer a unique opportunity to be upgraded to PEN (V) Boss gear later on through steadfast effort. Our main goal here was to provide a stepping stone for new Adventurers to stand on as they enter the world of Black Desert and begin catching up on the progression.
This system where PEN (V) Tuvala gears can be exchanged for TET (IV) Boss gear will be made available once per family, whether they are new Adventurers or veterans. We hope that this new system can help embrace the newer Adventurers flocking to Black Desert Console during the Seasons and also provide a form of benefit for current Adventurers as well. Further details will be released leading up to the update.
Overview of the New Tuvala Gear Exchange
Vell, the Heart of the Ocean
The next news is regarding an update about the new world boss Vell, the Heart of the Ocean. Vell is a colossal behemoth, with its sheer size is as large as Heidel itself, it is naturally a symbolic monster in the world of Black Desert and can be encountered in “Vell’s Realm” at the center of the Great Ocean. Using ships and the cannons on it, Adventurers must be prepared to throw everything they have in order to defeat this majestic beast.
Defeating Vell will grant you a chance at obtaining “Vell’s Heart”, a highly valuable item in the Black Desert world. “Vell’s Heart” is a unique Alchemy Stone that grants the wearer AP +3 stats along with other useful benefits.
We’ve been meaning to bring Vell to Console soon but one of the major obstacles in the update came from optimization issues particularly because of the creature’s gargantuan size. To be frank, we haven’t quite ironed out all the issues even until now and will need more time to review how this magnificient creature can be implemented in a more presentable way.
Regardless of the holdups on development, we want to convey our deepest sympathy to Adventurers who feel disappointed when it comes to World Bosses not being fully available. We’ve been reviewing what we can do with the resources we have and we’ve decided open up Vell first as guild raids, as we did with Garmoth. We take full responsibility knowing that this is not an ideal answer to the questions that have been recently asked. This might come especially hard on Adventurers who don't belong to any guild but we still wanted to offer at least some means for Adventurers to see and enjoy Vell. We won’t be able to arrange an environment that can support Adventurers from all over the world in the conquest against Vell yet, but we promise to keep up our efforts for optimization and in doing so, bring Garmoth and Vell into the world of Black Desert Console as World Bosses. Guild raids against Vell are planned to updated in October.
Next news is Caphras updates. We’ve been especially careful in Caphras levels because it could widen the gap between the veteran and new Adventurers. Original plans were to expand Caphras levels up to 20 by March of next year, but we’ve decided that a more discreet approach was necessary and it’s been decided that the updates will be brought in incrementally over time. By October, Caphras levels will be first extended to 10 and further announcements will be made depending on how we, developers, and Adventurers of the Black Desert Console Community reflect upon these updates. By carefully gauging how each update impacts the Black Desert Console community, we’ll be able to better adjust the setbacks that might come from the updates.
In addition, Adventurers will be given a special opportunity to obtain some unique gears when enhancing armor (Boss gear) to Caphras level 10. More details on how this system works will be explained later in the O’dyllita update section.
The next content update pertains to Atoraxxion: Sycrakea. Sycrakea is the next level cooperative dungeon after Vahmalkea, with a deep underwater theme. The difficulty will have increased but it will entail newer challenges and more interesting adventures to experience. It is scheduled to be released during October and here is a short gameplay clip of the dungeon, first released to Console Adventurers only.
Node Wars/Conquest Wars
The last news of October is about Node Wars/Conquests in Mediah & Valencia.
These updates will not only allow Node Wars/Conquests to happen in Mediah and Valencia but it will also have grant much more handsome rewards at the end of the battles. The winning guild will be able to claim a prize of 3 billion silver as their victory and while counterparts will be given less, silver will be given enough to encourage them for another round of battles for next time. We’ll announce more details through GM notes when this update is around the corner.
When talking about Node/Conquest Wars, we cannot leave out the discussion regarding optimization. A lot of Adventurers had given opinions on adjusting the graphic options. However, the current optimization problems lie in the CPUs, not GPUs, of consoles. We are focusing are efforts on this issue and looking at ways to improve it.
In particular, when a large number of Adventurers gather in an area, each individual customization and costume that is present has a significant impact on gameplay. In this regard, we would like to limit the customization of characters in Node/Conquest Wars.
To explain in a little bit more detail, all guild members that participate in Node/Conquest Wars will have a “guild outfit”. This outfit has a cloak where the color of the cloak will help you distinguish between friend and foe. These colors are automatically assigned depending on the number of participating guilds.
This decision was made in an effort to optimize Node Wars and Conquest Wars, but we are aware that it may feel like it is being forced upon Adventurers. We thought about it for a long time and tried to figure out a better way, but the longer we thought, the longer our Adventurers had to experience poorly run Node/Conquest Wars. We realized that we had to do something while at the same time, continue to find better ways to improve Node/Conquest Wars.
The initial plan was to unify the outfits with the same appearance, however when considering the concept of Node Wars and Conquest Wars, we wanted Adventurers to be able to clearly distinguish the opponents as well as maintain the sense of belonging to a guild. We understand that some may be disappointed in not being able to retain your unique appearances/customization, however we ask for your understanding, as it was a decision made considering the smoother running of Node/Conquest Wars. However, we will not stop here and will continue to find a better method than this. If we can find a way for our Adventurers to enjoy this content, we will update it as quickly as possible. We will also work on a way to have the “guild outfits” a choice.
Enhanced World Bosses
In November, Adventurers will be able to meet more dangerous and powerful variants of the World Bosses that inhabit Black Desert Console.
The World Bosses of Black Desert (Kzarka, Nouver, Karanda, and Kutum) will sometimes appear as a more powerful variant of themselves. During the early days of Black Desert, World Bosses were quite powerful. However, as Adventurers have grown significantly stronger, the World Bosses do not command the same gravitas as they once did. To restore them to their former glory, these World Bosses will sometimes appear in their more dangerous forms. The reason why I say “sometimes” is because it can be quite surprising for Adventurers if the World Bosses were suddenly much more powerful permanently. They don’t appear too often, but you will have to be careful the next time you challenge a World Boss.
As these more powerful versions of World Bosses are far more dangerous than their counterparts, the rewards for defeating these monsters are greater as well. Please note that these new versions of World Boss will be released one at a time every two weeks, starting with the “Nightmarish Kzarka” in early November, followed by “Bloodstorm Nouver”, “Stormbringer Karanda”, and “Thundercloud Kutum.”
[World Bosses that may appear in a more powerful state]
Dream Horse Doom
Doom, the last of the three dream horses, will also be launching on Black Desert Console. Unlike Ardunatt and Dine, who have a fantastical light that surrounds them, Doom’s blazing flames leaves burnt hoove-marks wherever Doom goes. Doom’s unique skill, Dark Sprint, allows you to run faster than any other horse, using 3 stages of instant acceleration. In addition, you can also take command of another unique skill: Dark Flame Steps, which creates fires that can incinerate your foes.
Doom will arrive to Black Desert Console in November.
Guild Boss Khan
Next is the guild boss, Khan. Khan can be summoned in an area near Oquilla’s Eye and must be defeated through a concerted effort from your guild.
Khan is a guild boss that will require the use of special cannons in order to deal damage to the monster. However, Khan will bring about allies, so your guild members will need to take care of them as well. Defeating these monsters will not only allow you to focus on Khan, but you will be able to collect Black Crystal cannons, which are cannonballs that can be loaded into the new “Monsterbane Cannons.”
Defeating Khan will earn you a chance at obtaining the unique “Khan’s Heart” alchemy stones. The guild boss, Khan, will launch on Black Desert Console in November.
Mansion: Blue Mane Lion’s Manor
Finally for November, the Blue Mane Lion’s Manor content, otherwise known as Mansions, will launch on Black Desert Console. Mansions, which are an extension to the current residence system, are large structures that can be decorated both inside and outside of the building. I hope that the Mansion content will be received well by our Adventurers who enjoy housing content. I also hope that this content serves as an opportunity to those Aventurers who have yet to experience housing content.
In December, the new area O’dylitta will be made available for Black Desert Console.
O’dyllita is located east of Kamasylvia and south of Drieghan. Here, along with the story of the Ahibs that were expelled from Kamasylvia, the story of the Immortal Alchemist Caphras will unfold.
You will be able to meet the denizens of O’dyllita, such as the fallen Ahib who wander through the mist of Thornwood Forest, the Turos who follow the will of the Earth God Tunta, and the golems that inhabit Olun’s Valley. Be forwarned as Crypt of Resting Thoughts is inhabited by the strongest monsters in all of O’dyllita.
New items will come along with the launch of O’dyllita. Accuracy specific accessories, such as the Ominous Ring and Turos’ Belt, will be added. Perhaps the most important item that will be added is the most powerful armor that I mentioned earlier, Fallen God's Armor, will make it’s way to Black Desert Console alongside O’dyllita. You will also have the opportunity to obtain a new treasure (in the form of a costume) called “La Orzeca.”
O’dyllita is scheduled for December 2021, so please look forward to it.
[Fallen God's Armor]
O’dyllita in December marks the end of the road map. Please do keep in mind that this road map contains the major content, but other updates (both large and small) will continue to be added to Black Desert Console during this time.
Quality of Life Updates
There is also something that I want to tell our Console Adventurers. Currently on Black Desert Online, there are a variety of updates that are being made in order to increase the quality-of-life of our Adventurers as well as decrease the barriers of entry to play. However, since the released content was mainly on Black Desert Online, I know that our Console Adventurers must feel sad and left out. For that I apologize – I should have separated information that was specific to either platform and distributed information to our Console Adventurers in parallel to Black Desert Online Adventurers.
However, the direction change in development is not just for Black Desert Online. The direction of development was in regards to Black Desert as an IP, including Console, and meaningful updates that result from this process are being applied to Console as soon as possible. We will continue in our endeavors to satisfy our Console Adventurers.
In the case of Console-specific UI and/or systems, we are going to continue to collect your opinions and will try to patch them into the game faster than we are currently operating.
At the moment, we are working on adding a few different UI and systems. Currently we are working on things such as custom guild emblems, Gathering improvements specific to Console, the Duel function, kill notification improvements, camera zoom settings being saved (as an optional function), customizable health bars, switching between Family/Character names in chat, Red Battlefield view score only settings, improving the pathfinding function in the ocean, more UI editing capabilities (like skill cooldowns), adding in color-blindness options and more.
In addition to all of this, we are constantly reviewing the pain points of our Console Adventurers. We will improve the process in how we let our Adventurers know about our progress via Developer Notes such as this one, update news, as well as update streams held by CM Shirna and CM Trent.
I’m sure there are many of you who are dying to find out how the Class Reboots will happen on Console. This is, indeed, a priority on our development list and we are currently sharing our efforts on the Class Reboots through the Black Desert Global Labs. The Reboot process is moving forward in a way where Adventurers let us know how they feel about the class changes. That being said, we are actively gathering feedback from Adventurers from both Console and PC. Every Adventurer’s opinion is important to us, so whenever you feel that there is a certain need for a class, don’t hesitate to reach out to us (even if something has already been announced on Black Desert Global Labs). We promise to make sure that every Adventurer’s voice is accounted for when it comes to making decisions in class reboots. Things that can be applied quickly will be updated without waiting for the reboot.
Along with Class Reboots, how one mechanically controls a class on Console is an important part of the overall gameplay experience so this has been at the top of our list as well. Much like the Class Reboots described above, controls are following a similar process on Black Desert Global Labs and they will be released alongside the Class Reboots for you to review.
We understand that it may be difficult for our Console Adventurers to access Black Desert Global Labs on PC, so we’re also considering ways to demonstrate the class changes for Console Adventurers on Global Labs through our official streams and other communication channels. Once they are open for testing in the Black Desert Global Labs and streams have been released for demonstration, please let us know what you think about the changes so that we may reflect your opinions on the final stages of testing.
As mentioned earlier, changes that can be applied immediately will be updated without waiting for the entire Class Reboot. However, it is unclear at this point when we can release the Class Reboots for Black Desert Console and PC. Regardless, we do promise that once the Class Reboots are finished, they will be released simultaneously on both platforms.
Next-Gen Support and Optimization
And lastly, with the advent of the new consoles, many Adventurers have been asking for exclusive Xbox Series X/S and PlayStation 5 versions of the game. To be frank, we weren’t entirely ready to undertake such a project in terms of the preparations and the priority we initially had in mind. As we’ve mentioned last time, our focuses have always been on providing a more stable environment for Xbox and PlayStation 4, perfecting the optimization on these consoles first.
However, given how much our Adventurers have been asking for a next-gen update, we are happy to announce that we will be proceeding with the development of Xbox Series X/S and PlayStation 5 versions here on out.
Please note that this endeavor will take some time before we can roll out these versions. While we regret that you may have to wait some time for this, we will do everything in our power to make the most of the time given to us to produce the much-anticipated results. Once all of the developmental work is finished, they will be released to our current Console Adventurers free of charge.
Rest assured that we will not cease Xbox and PlayStation 4 optimization efforts as we develop the next-gen versions of Black Desert Console. As explained earlier regarding the Node War outfits, we will continue to do our best to study new methods in development and do our best to ensure better gameplay experience.
With that comes the end of this announcement. Thank you always for your love and support for Black Desert.
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