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Huge Update

Dear players,

We informed you several months ago that there will be a huge update which will
require us to perform a complete wipe of all characters("charwipe"). This moment
has come now. Along with that wipe (all of your items, skills and attributes are
reset to zero!), there will be several changes (which, of course, made that wipe
inevitable).

To start with, there is a new semi-automatic account system which means that
there are definite accounts and characters in that account (5 at maximum per
account). You can put 5 of your old characters into this account by yourself.
Account management works on a web-based platform that can be accessed here
(https://illarion.org/accountsystem/). In order to play now, you need to create
an account (the account name is not necessarily related to the character's
names!) and add your old characters. The next step is to redistribute the
attributes (strength, dexterity, ....).Be wise and think about what you are
doing; all of the attributes are used in one way or the other; a hunter without
perception is a blind hunter! (You get the idea...) When this is finished, you
can log into the game. Note that the password of each character is the account
password, that means: Choose a good password and don't give it away! (We will
NEVER ask for your password!) Once someone has access to your account, he has
access to all of your characters. The approving of accounts will now work via a
web-based interface for us as well, which hopefully leads to much faster account
registration.

Concerning the distribution of attributes you should hold in mind what they
mean. A magician will need lots of intelligence but not physical strength. A
fighter will need a lot of strength and constitution, but not a very high
intelligence. This should be common sense. However, there might be problems to
determine what the attributes "essence", "agility" and "dexterity" mean:

Essence represents a characters "magical/mental" constitution. Agility
represents the overall flexibility of the body. Dexterity represents how good
your character is when it comes to crafting things.

A second important change will be the enlargement of the map. It is much bigger
than the old one and it has changed therefore. You will have to explore
everything and we wish you good luck and a lot of fun while doing that. There
are lots of new places, hidden and obvious, and there is a lot to explore.

The next important change is the introduction of language skills. This was
planned a long time ago and we were able to implement it now: There is a "common
language" which all characters speak (and understand) from the very beginning
perfectly. If you do nothing, nothing will change compared to the situation
before the update. However, if you play a dwarf and wish to speak dwarf
language, simply type the command "!l dwarf". From there, your character will
speak with a dwarfen tongue (which is visible by the tag "[dwa]") until you type
"!l common" again. (The commands are: !l common, !lhuman, !l elf, !l dwarf, !l
halfling, !l orc, !l lizard)

Another change that will be of importance is the way you are able to interact
with NPCs. You are used to "use" NPCs by shift-clicking on them. While we still
have the option to re-introduce that again(it does not work now!), there is a
new way for you to communicate: By language. You can simply type in commands and
they will listen and talk to you. For example, if you say "Greeting", an NPC
might respond with: "Greetings, stranger, how are you today? Do you want to sell
something?". You may say "Yes, I want to sell 5 swords" (or anything else) and
as soon as you say that, the NPC bought the swords, gave you the money and
that's it. Furthermore, the NPCs have only limited amounts of wares and money,
that means: If you sell or buy too many goods in a too short amount of time that
can lead to a problem. However, most NPCs will also be able to tell you more or
less interesting stories and so on, so listen to them carefully!

Furthermore, there is a system of item breakage/aging and their quality. This
means that an item does not decay instantly but it has hitpoints. The more often
it is used, the older it gets. This means that you might want to use your
expensive sword only when it is needed in order to not destroy it. From a
technical point of view, this is a deep cut because our old concept was that all
items are stackable; now, most items are not stackable anymore.

Also, you cannot put bags into bags hereafter to prevent unrealistic and
infinite series of items put into each other. Moreover, the space in your depots
is limited as of now.

The magic system has changed in some ways. First of all, the skill handling is
different now, not every rune is represented in one skill anymore. Furthermore,
there will be new and interesting spells, along with changes in the old spells.
Also, there will be new magical disciplines: Bard magic and priest magic.
Another change is the way you gain runes, but you'll find out yourself
hopefully. The magic system will soon include bard and priest magic with
numerous spells. Due to the short amount of time we had in preparation for this,
the magic system is not entirely ready yet.However, it will only take a short
amount of time until you can become a priest or a bard (within some days). If
you want to play one of these two character types, we'd recommend to wait for
the scripts to be implemented. As soon as this happens, we'll inform you.

Since NPCs now react on spoken language, here are some simple guidelines for
communication with them: They react, as you may have guessed, on certain
keywords or combinations of them. For trading, there are simple rules: "Can you
give me a list of your wares" or "Can you list your wares" will show you the
wares an NPC sells (or buys); note that not everything he sells will be bought
and vice versa.

"What is the price of a [ware]?" will result in the NPC telling his actual
price.

"I want to buy a [ware]." will result in buying a [ware] immediately (if you
have the money and the NPC still has enough [ware] to sell).

"I want to buy 10 [wares]" will result in buying 10 [wares] at a time. The same
is valid for "I want to sell..."

The NPCs will also react on other keywords and questions, but you will find that
out for sure. They can give valuable hints on some things.

Some minor changes include: Depots are hereby opened by right-clicking on them,
just like any other container. Some of the graphics have changed, hopefully the
new female elf finds more fans now. Scripts only used to be invoked by shift-
clicking earlier; there are a lot of new ways to start scripts now, meaning that
there are a lot more scripts involved in general (server side). The file
"itemnames.dat" became obsolete with this client. The client connects to a new
IP, if you use a firewall you will have to reconfigure it.

Now we come to the technical changes: First off, you hereby connect and play on
the new server hardware, located at the Technical University of Vienna, Austria.
This means that we are now, for the first time, playing on the server hardware
owned by the Illarion community, which is much faster than the old hardware. We
already presented the technical details on that. Furthermore we changed from a
MySQL-database to postgreSQL for some technical reasons, mainly because the old
DB had some problems and we can keep the new DB consistent easily. The last
change was to introduce a new, professional scripting language. We used to have
a self made language, which was slow and inflexible by any means. Now we use
"Lua", which is a lot more flexible in its usage, which is precompiled and which
therefore is a lot faster.

To close with, here is a little outline on our next plans:

Firstoff, we are aware of the fact that a lot of bugs will pop out of nothing.
This is not directly intended, however we produced them ourself and it costed a
lot of effort to hide them.More seriously, we now have a tool, namely the new
scripting language (Lua), which enables us to easily implement new features
continously. More than that, we have a basic map editor which produces maps that
can be read by the server, which gives us the opportunity to add new detail to
the world from time to time. This also means that this was not "the change", but
just the beginning of a period of frequent changes (remember that we had no
updates for a long time now, which mainly was because of the changes due to the
server switch, implementation of the new scripting language and switch to a new
database). There is still work going on to produce a new client which we look
forward to finish. We will also try to constantly add new features like a key-
lock-system and things like that.

That's it for now, I think there is a lot of new things for you to find out and
play with, we hope you enjoy the new Illarion. If you find anything that does
not work as intended, please let us know.

The staff of Illarion


PS.: Our thanks go out not only to the staff members who helped preparing this
update, but also to the numerous players who were a great help by designing the
map, writing some scripts, contributing graphics, helped testing the account
system, helped testing different things on the testserver and so on.

PPS.: The first thing you will meet is a new NPC. If you have no idea what to
do, ask for "help". You will have to tell him if you want to become a magician,
craftsman or fighter. Of course, you can change your mind later, nothing is lost
by declaring that!

written by martin on 24. April 2005 11:28 pm

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Start of the new Account System

The new account system starts right now. You can access it via
http://account.illarion.org or the link at the homepage. Inside the system you
can create an account which can be used to add up to five characters. Players
who already have played Illarion can add their old characters (without answering
further roleplay questions) after creation of an account.



With browsers like Firefox or Opera shouldn't be problems, but Internet Explorer
behaves strange sometimes. If you encounter white web pages so please reload
this page (F5) or click the button at the right of the URL bar.



If you have questions or get problems please send an email to
accounts@illarion.org.



You can only play with the new accounts after you have received another
newsletter announcing the start of the new game server. The old one is online
until the end of this (German :-)) day.

written by Alatar on 23. April 2005 08:06 pm

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Homepage moved to the new server

Maybe some of you have noticed already that the movement of our homepage
happened during the last days. The forum was completely transferred
and it is available again at http://forum.illarion.org

After the domain movement all *@illarion.org email addresses are working
properly again.

The statistics at the upper right corner of the homepage will be included
after the game server is transferred too.

There are some additional subdomains which can be used:
http://download.illarion.org
http://rules.illarion.org
http://account.illarion.org

As soon as you can apply for an account with the new accountsystem (via
last named subdomain) you will be informed by the staff.

written by Alatar on 19. April 2005 01:41 pm

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New Server

Once again, we have some great news to announce:

The new Illarion-server has been ordered, paid-for and was handed over recently. Thanks to you, Illarion's community, we were able to buy this new computer; By your generous donations we were granted the possibility to make this investment. However, to buy the new server we had to raise a small loan (ex interest), which means that we still need some more money. Details on how to donate can be found here:

Donation details.

And now for the technical details: This is a system with two Xeon 2,8 GHz processors, 2 GB DDR-RAM, 2 x 80 GB HD in Raid 1 and some more nice hardware. Everything was assembled in a 1-HU high 19"-rack and is equipped with five extremely powerful, and hence loud, coolers.

We have a 36 month full hardware guarantee. We bought the whole thing (incl. assembling, configuration, optimizing and some tests) at a price of 2400 Euro.

Of course we do not want to keep the pictures that we took from you:

The new server in it's original wrap...

... and then without it.

The front view.

Booting it the first time...

And here in its future place.

Currently we prepare the server for it's future purpose, which means that the operating system (Debian linux) was installed and will now be configured.

written by martin on 28. March 2005 08:05 am

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The Illarion Installer

From now on, the current client comes with an installation program. The installer unzips the files, creates shortcuts and offers the possibilty to uninstall Illarion (what you will never do, right?). Still, Illarion does not change your registry or creates files outside the Illarion-folder.

written by Estralis on 13. March 2005 05:10 pm

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