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Happy 5th Birthday, Totem Tribe II: Jotun!

Today we are celebrating the 5th Birthday of Totem Tribe II: Jotun. It has been exactly 5 years since we launched the ALPHA 1 version of the game to the general public and now we are fully into BETA 1 Let's look back and reminisce about things that happened during these years.

The Year

So - what were the major milestones of the past year?

  • Nuclear Warfare was added to the Information Age - Atom Bombs, Nuclear Missiles, Mutual Annihilation Defense - all of those unlock completely different strategy to warfare.

  • Jet Planes were added to the Information Age - Jet Fighter, Stealth Fighter, and Stealth Bomber. Two of the later provide a whole different kinds of strategy due to their Stealth Capabilities, especially Stealth Bomber which can carry Atom Bombs.

  • Treasure Maps were added - you can find treasure map pieces and finally unlock treasure location on your world map.

  • Thornsville was added with Beta 1 launch and whole lot of different other things. Thornsville was a long awaited and quite unique quest location which allows non-liner playthrough and a lot of easter eggs.

  • Mines was added with Beta 1 launch too with whole set of 12 (first 9, and then 3 more) randomly generated locations. Later we even added mines inside player towns!

  • Movemont Bonuses were added - while not the most important part of gameplay it clearly adds some surprised while you are spending time on the world map.

  • Interface Improvements, especially Items Panel - we haven't forgot about user experience too, completely redesigning the Items Panel and finally making it actually useful.

  • Railroad Puzzle - a new puzzle added which for the first time in the game you can solve more than once after some time. Later by popular demand we have redesigned other puzzles so they can be completed more than once.

  • New Buildings - Cabin and Innovation Studio were added to fill the gaps in the game balace and overall the game becoming more mature with major rebalances like in Information Age.

  • Alliance Packages were added to incentivize taking newbies into alliaces and to build up team spirit.

  • Mercenary Camps and Treasure Stashes improved town surroundings as now you can have more stuff to do inside your towns.

  • Hovercraft - a new transport unit of Industrial Age was added to replace an old trusty Brigantine. Hovercraft holds twice as many units.

  • Mentor - a new traveler was added who tells interesting stories which makes player more experienced and allows to meditate even without Altar, Temple, Church, or Cathedral, thus allowing you to reach level 50 in any age!

Quite a lot, huh?

Thanks to your support we were able to make it through another year, and closer to our ultimate vision of how Totem Tribe II should be. Yes, it may look like the game still needs a lot of work, and it's true, but we will do our best to make sure you have fun while we are slowly moving toward the full version release.

The Prizes

To celebrate today's Totem Tribe II: Jotun birthday, everyone receives gifts in the form of a Supporter's Key, Truce Proclamation, non-expirable Thank You Package, and 3 Lucky Coins.

The Future

Since we have recaped the last year let me share some insights with you for the things to come:

  • Gypsy Tabor - while I have decided to delay it indefinitely, it is still pretty close to completion and my guess is out of all major updates this will come out first. Hopefully.

  • Space Age and Science Victory - another major milestone to aim for, but unfortunately we are very early in the development of this thing so don't get your hopes too high. Definitely not this year.

  • Other Platforms - our stretch goal is to put this game to mobile eventually - tablets and phones, but before we will do that there is a lot of things that needs to be done, some of them you are experiencing like those buggy rendering engine update or recent music system update which caused quite some critics. I understand your inconvenience but it is inavoidable to bring this game to more platfroms and thus more players so please take patience. Our closest milestone in this direction though is Mac version. The Mac version is quite realistic aim and maybe even will be released until the end of the year. Maybe.

  • Grasslands Continent - Mujahidabad is close to being fully populated so new continent will be unlocked pretty soon. My guesstimate is - 1 month.

  • Global Wipes - the BETA system with apocalypse and individual wipes turned out to be good, which allowed us to focus on game features without pressue of global wipes and it turned out into more updates, so we don't plan and global wipes it the forseable future. I hope we will be able to pull out Space Age without global wipe too somehow, but it's too early to tell.

The Retrospective

Now as this is 5th Birthday and is a significant Anniversary, let's take another look back to recall all game launches throughout all these years since the beginnning:

  • ALPHA 1. It all started with A1 when it was launched on the 22nd of October 2013, and only a couple of dozen players were invited. The game was far from what it is now - it had only Herald's Home, no other quest locations. There were no advisor quests, the Cash Shop was not available, and in general a lot of things were far worse than they are now. Those who played it, please leave us some comments about what other important things were not present :). Here is the old news post about Alpha 1.

  • ALPHA 2 was launched on the 23rd of December 2013, two months after Alpha 1, and just in time for Christmas. We were able to release it so soon after Alpha 1 because most of the new features that were added were partially ready when Alpha 1 was released. In Alpha 2 we added Opposition Hideout, advisor quests, Cash Shop, and most importantly for some people - more horses! There were only a couple of horses in entire Alpha 1 release. There were more people invited to participate as well, maybe up to 50. You can read about it in: news post about Alpha 2 launch.

  • ALPHA 3 took us significantly longer to release (2nd of June 2014) because there were so many additional features to be added. We added a whole new age - Classical, and an entirely new payment system which includes various rewards and bonuses. The new Jungle climate zone was added, and random monsters were also new to this phase. The inhabitable space was doubled because of the new climate zone. We invited even more players this time - we now have over 200 players. Here is the Alpha 3 news post with details. More importantly though, is the work that has been done behind the scenes. We can tell you that we have started to rework our codebase, which in the long run will allow us to do things faster and better..

  • On the 11th of September 2014, we did not launch a new alpha stage, however we did add 2 new quest locations - which is a big deal for those players who have been fans since original TT1/TTG and who wanted more of the old-school experience.

  • ALPHA 4 was launched on the 8th of December, 2014. We had planned to launch it before Christmas but we did so quite in advance. The Alpha stages were larger by this time - the new Medieval Age made the game significantly larger and more complex, not to mention all of the smaller updates in-between Alpha launches. Aside from Medieval Age. which was the big thing for Alpha 4, we had also launched a new world map with separate large continents. More new players were invited in Alpha 4 so the community got slightly bigger. Old news post about Alpha 4 launch.

  • Random Caves were added on the 13th of May, 2015. While not as large as the Alpha launch, I still consider it a significant update with the amount of work involved, (we had been working on it on-and-off for almost a year) and taking into account how much time people spent (and still keep spending on it). Liked by some, hated by most, it still keeps people busy and does not get old so quickly because of it's random nature. I bet a lot of you haven't met both bosses in those caves yet (wink wink). Old news post about Random Caves launch.

  • ALPHA 5 was launched most recently - on the 31th on August, 2015. It has been our largest Alpha launch so far in all aspects. It is the largest in terms of people started, in terms of new content added, and even in terms of donations (thanks a bunch!). This Alpha not only added all-new Renaissance Age - which all of you are yet to reach - but also the all-new snowy climate, and the towns became more varied with puzzles, quests, enemies, and mini-games.

  • Other noteworthy updates: There were numerous features added in-between those Alpha launches that were slowly shaping the game. New espionage system, ability to lend world resources, protectorate functionality, artifacts, treasure hunting, item crafting and other manipulations, war trophies, and many more.

  • Travelling Characters were added. They added some life to your stale towns. Some of them were trivial, while others were deep and even had large quests (think Necromancer). We are going to add more unexpected events to your towns in the future.

  • ALPHA 6 was launched on the 23rd of March 2016. This was the biggest event of the last year and featured loads of new content. Industrial Age was introduced along with all those new units and buildings, and a pack of quest locations such as monster dens, a whole new desert climate, Tesla minigame and many more. You can review the news of alpha 6 launch here.

  • Ongoing interface changes. In 2016 we finally found time to improve game interface and to make it more convenient and less buggy and laggy. New minimap with icons, new build menu and upgrade screens were highly regarded by players and today we are also adding some more eye-candy to the interface. You can compare how game interface looked back in 2012 at our facebook page. In the future we also plan to redesign how advisors work, so all those annoying Zweistein popups will go away.

  • Random Dungeons were evolutionary improvement over Random Caves , which were introduced during A4. The addition is 9 randomly generated dungeons which are different for each hero.

  • Numerous balancing updates can be easily overlooked. They are those minor bits that might be hard to notice at first glance, but shape the game's fundamentals and make it fun to play. I am talking about things like Tavern building, prolonged beginners' protection which smoothed out the early gaming for newbies, destruction balancing which made it more reasonable, alliance balancing, improved movement speed of all units which made the game more fun, and finally - the most recent easier recovery from destruction. By the way, in today's update we have increased timers for easier recovery x2.

  • ALPHA 7 was launched on 1st of December 2016 kicking of with huge amount of new content. The long-awaited Karfaree quest location was added which have been in development for 3 years, Anomalies - a new set of locations was added, new tiles minigame, 4 new politics, interface improvements and many more. See the old news post for details.

  • After A7 and before A8 there were numerous updates which introduced Rage mechanic, Joint Attacks, New exploration (remember how tedious it were before?), new unit - Militia, major balance updates like cutting down construction time almost in half!

  • ALPHA 8 was released on 17th of July 2017 and again had a pack of huge additions - Information Age, Culture Victory, new places of interest - making world exploration even more interesting, candy minigame, and many more. See the news post about it for details.

  • After A8 and before Beta 1 there were also a series of major updates like adding Guerrilla and Crusade, Treasure Maps and Treasure Spots, balance tweaks including early game ones and more.

  • BETA1 was on 6th of March 2018 with Thorsville, Random Mines, Apocalypse and individual wipes, new VIP System, new apolcalyptic minigame, movement bonuses and many more. The Beta 1 is where we are now and it is still planned to run in forseeable future.

Conclusions?

Now everyone post your most memorable moments of the year and of all time! :)

Posted 1 month ago.
8

Comments

Memorial? When you took away the culture perks for houses and added the towers into the mix. Oh boy you took some flak from that one. 

I really liked it when we had a choice of areas to settle in, there were 3 different continents at one time. I learned a lot from Frobot about Defense, then when you added the monster dens that was the best something to do over and over again. 

All in all, I am glad to have known you for all of this time, even though I might call you names now and then on different puzzles. 

You have a wonderful game and a pleasure to meet everyone on the game. Even if some of the players might call me all kinds of mean nasty ugly names too, from time to time.  

1 month ago

What I remember most from A3 (when I started), that you could attack someone on your own. You could also defend against 1 attacker, even 2, when you were online. I miss that. Now you have to find several people to hit someone who is defended. It is not pvp anymore, but avp! (a for alliance). And there was no better feeling than being attacked AND wiping the enemies' army. I loved that!!

I was so green then. I started an alliance, just because I had a mission lvl 5. Invited somebody and noticed that what they explored, I could also see and vice versa. so i started inviting people on the edge of what I could see, never realizing that that was not what the alliance was for. Arri cleared that up, real fast! :) My other hero joined an alliance on Littlefield, because I was dying to see what was going on there. I was in awe of those on Littlefield! Alternatives/Arri declared war on my alliance. I did not sleep that night. When i talked to her, it became clear she could not attack me from another continent. what a relief!! :)

I remember the small wipe, of our heroes, because max hero level was changed to 50!

Made some great friends in A3, who are still friends and in our alliance! Thanks guys!! love you!

1 month ago

I first started playing in Jan. 2014, just after Alpha 2 was launched, and I'm a little ashamed to say that I didn't play long and actually left the game up until, gosh, I think sometime this past winter.. What a shock when I started playing again, and as rough as it was in the beginning, I stuck it out and kept keepin' on with it, because I absolutely LOVE this game!!! I was very confused and somewhat overwhelmed by all the content at first, trying to understand all this war and alliance stuff, but wow, once you get into it, it's pretty addicting :P

It's a hard game to play when you generally work 12-18+ hr. days, and I've even had people tell me I shouldn't play then because I can't keep up, but I haven't minded having to donate for the finish construction bonuses and such, which helps a lot in catching up when I DO have some time off.. Plus, making it playable on a tablet was an amazing idea, and while it can sometimes be a little awkward and slow to play (or I could just get a better tablet, lol), it's great being able to jump on during my breaks or lunch!

This game has come so far since the beginning, and I can't wait to see what's in store next!! Keep it coming!!

1 month ago

Great stories so far, keep them coming! :)

1 month ago

What a long, strange trip this has been since I started playing in February 2013.  I kept to myself for the most part for the remaining time of Alpha 2, but managed to make a couple of friends.  The map was ALL fog so I started heroes willy nilly because you had so many continents available to settle.  I miss having more than one place to start, to be honest.  :-D  

Alpha 3 was the REAL learning experience.  Thanks to Arrivederci and Bers for teaching me the hard lessons.  I had an amazing group of friends in two alliances and got a lot more out of the game because of that.  I never wanted to quit because the game was too hard.  :-D  The people I've met here and the experiences I've had as a result have been priceless and I wouldn't trade them for anything.  

I think as I have always thought that this game has a ton of appeal and while some changes I wasn't thrilled with, I'm still here for that reason.  

Thanks for all the content you've given us and the challenges the game poses!  Here's to another 5 years team!

1 month ago

I think one of my most memorable moments was when Bers sent me a pm asking how I had so many items without paying a penny on the game :)

First I felt a little violated he was in my profile O.o

But after I explained to him about town farming, easy item gains, etc. And how I will find a way to farm for items for free still... We discussed special places to visit with mobs of monster... Then the next alpha brought the monster dens. Still love them.

Other memorable moments are the multiple times I have been banned/silenced :) still think I should have an achievement for that bers...

The game itself is great, the choices of play styles (attacking, defending, victory hunting, etc), the puzzles, the quests, hidden objects, etc, etc. All smashed into one game, what more could you ask for? But, I find this game is more of a success because of the social impact that lives inside the game. If it was not for this, I feel many would get bored and leave. Making friends, forming alliances, unions, etc. Even after all the changes that slowed the game down to a mind numbing madness for players that enjoy attacking... I am still here, I have made a lot of great friends, too many to even name. I have lost some very close friends too. I have personally spoke to most players in this game as well, good or bad. 

In my opinion, this game has a long way to go before it can reach a mobile market launch, but, I do wish all the best to the dev team and really hope to see this game make it there. The market is much larger vs PC.

I would like to congratulate you on a successful 5 year run, and, I look forward to seeing how the game molds over the next coming years.

1 month ago

I've been good, I've been bad, I've been naughty and on occasion, bonkers.  But most of all, I've had fun and met some really nice people.  The game has always been interesting, even if some of the updates have been unpopular, you just have to adjust.

Testing has always been my favourite thing, about the game.  If the game had an electric socket, I'd stick a fork in it :)  Or maybe a Spoon :))

I think I started in A4, but I forget.  I really wish more people would do poems and stuff, it gets a little lonely }:-}

The first time I quit, was when I was attacked by pirates, from the continent next door, Abenia.  I have been back and quit, a few more times, since then.  The hardest part, back then, was finding someone to tell me how things worked, the game has gotten a lot more user friendly, since then.

I've been in a few different alliances, before I found my true home, with Pleiades.

1 month ago

When i started 5 years ago we could build, scout and plunder.Not much else to do so i ended up with 8 to 10 heroes:).Now there is so much to do that even 2 heroes is plenty to keep you busy all the time.Seeing how the game has evolved over the years was a true pleasure.You had a great dream Bers.Hope TTJ will be a great succes when released.

1 month ago

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