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Dark Age of Camelot
DAOCanniversarycover.jpg
Original cover art
Developer(s) Mythic Entertainment

EA

Publisher(s) Mythic Entertainment (US), Wanadoo (DE/FR/UK/SP/IT)
Designer(s) Mark Jacobs
Engine Gamebryo Engine

Foliage - SpeedTree

Platform(s) Windows
Release date(s) October 10, 2001
Genre(s) MMORPG
Mode(s) Multiplayer
Rating(s) ESRB: Teen (T)
Media CD or Public Download

Dark Age of Camelot is a 3D medieval fantasy MMORPG that revolves around war between three realms following King Arthur's rule.

DAoC includes both player vs. environment and Realm vs. Realm combat. Players can choose to adventure alone or join groups. Players may also join battlegroups, which are formed so all members can get completion credit in large scale PvE encounters and for communication purposes in RvR.

Player vs. player combat takes the form of Realm vs Realm. RvR restricted to a limited number of zones where action ranges from massive battles to one vs one fights. Players are awarded points, which are used to purchase additional abilities, by killing enemy players. Participating in RvR combat is strictly voluntary in DAoC and free for all PvP only exists on a dedicated server.

PvE focuses on defeating monsters found in dungeons, the open world, and RvR zones. Players earn experience points towards obtaining levels by killing both monsters and enemy players. Gaining levels yields new skills, abilities, and access to expansion areas. The current maximum level is 50. Expansions to the game offer alternative advancement type levels that grant additional abilities to level 50 players.

The decision to develop Dark Age of Camelot was made in late 1999[1]. The game was released in October 2001.

Contents

Interface

Character control is, for the most part, by means of either the mouse or keyboard. 'Quickbars' of 10 slots each can be customized with spells, weapon attack 'styles', or macros, and can be either clicked on or selected with the number keys to activate.

Realms

Dark Age of Camelot offers players a choice of three realms to choose from: Albion, Hibernia, and Midgard.

Albion is based on Arthurian legend, with such notable real-world places as Hadrian's Wall, Stonehenge, and other locations in Great Britain. The races and classes of Albion, in the original game and early expansions, tended to be more professions and peoples of European history and mythology than inventions of the gamemakers.

Hibernia is based on Celtic folklore and the landscape includes lush green rolling hills typical of Ireland. Although the quest storylines, placenames, and numerous game elements are firmly fixed in Celtic mythology, Hibernian races and classes are typically the creation of the gamemakers.

Midgard is based on Norse mythology and its landscape includes misty fjords and pine forests. Somewhere between Albion and Hibernia in its mix of Norse historical figures and mythology, and inventions of Mythic Entertainment. The adherence of the architecture to the forms and design of medieval and pre-medieval Norse architecture is notable.

Races

The races in the game are:

Albion: Avalonian, Briton, Half-Ogre, Highlander, Inconnu, Saracen, and the Korazh(Minotaur).

Hibernia: Celt, Elf, Firbolg, Lurikeen, Shar, Sylvan, and the Graoch(Minotaur).

Midgard: Dwarf, Frostalf, Kobold, Norseman, Troll, Valkyn, and the Deifrang(Minotaur).[2]

Classes

Although each realm's classes differ in specific abilities, DAoC's classes are broken down into the four common RPG archetypes: warrior 'tanks', spell casters, rogues that use stealth, and healing priests. Hybrid classes, which combine skills from any two of the archetypes, also exist in all 3 realms. DAoC's classes are balanced at the RvR level instead of in direct comparison to the other realms' equivalent classes. DAoC classes are very rigid with specific roles, play styles, and specialization point allocations.

Albion: Armsman, Cabalist, Cleric, Friar, Heretic, Infiltrator, Mauler, Mercenary, Minstrel, Necromancer, Paladin, Reaver, Scout, Sorcerer, Theurgist, and Wizard.

Hibernia: Animist, Bainshee, Bard, Blademaster, Champion, Druid, Eldritch, Enchanter, Hero, Mauler, Mentalist, Nightshade, Ranger, Warden, Valewalker, and Vampiir.

Midgard: Berserker, Bonedancer, Healer, Hunter, Mauler, Runemaster, Savage, Shadowblade, Shaman, Skald, Spiritmaster, Thane, Valkyrie, Warlock, and Warrior.

The tank classes are pure close ranged fighters and have virtually no ability to deal ranged damage, but they wear the heaviest armor and have abilities to reduce the effectiveness of crowd control spells used on them. Melee classes in DAoC are divided into heavy and light tanks. Heavy tanks wear the heaviest armor in the game and often specialize in high damage two handed weapons for RvR or the one handed weapons and shield for PvE. Light tanks have higher damage output, dual wield weapons, and wear the second heaviest type of armor. Light tanks also have extra abilities to avoid crowd control in RvR. Heavy tanks include the Armsman, Hero, and Warrior. Light tanks are the Blademaster, Berserker, Mercenary, and Savage.

Casting classes have the highest damage output in DAoC. Casters have the lowest hit points and lowest level of armor in the game, but almost all casters have a form of crowd control spell to restrain enemies. Their spells can be easily interrupted and they are targeted quickly in RvR. Casters usually specialize in the control of 'pet' allies, and/or Damage over Time spells (DoTs), ranged 'direct damage' spells, or point blank area affect spells(PBAE). Although the majority of classes can cast spells of one kind or another, the caster classes are the Animist, Bainshee, Bonedancer, Cabalist, Eldritch, Enchanter, Mentalist, Necromancer, Runemaster, Sorcerer, Spiritmaster, Theurge, Warlock, and Wizard.

Stealth classes are capable of rendering themselves invisible to the enemy; this offers an advantage in intelligence gatherering in RvR, and allows them to choose when to attack. DAoC's rogues are divided into archer and assassin subclasses. Although the Minstrel hybrid class can train Stealth, the primary stealth classes are the Hunter, Infiltrator, Nightshade, Ranger, Scout, and Shadowblade.

Healing classes in DAoC heal and enhance the combat effectiveness of group members. Although a handful of hybrid classes can cast healing spells, the primary healing classes are Clerics, Druids, Healers, Bards, and Shamans.

Hybrids are a combination of 2 archetypes and range from warrior/caster to priest/caster. Hybrids offer a level of versatility not available to the other classes. The hybrid classes are Champions, Friars, Heretics, Maulers, Minstrels, Paladins, Reavers, Skalds, Thanes, Valewalkers, Valkyries, Wardens, and Vampiirs.

Alternative advancement

Many powerful abilities become available through points obtained by killing enemy players in RvR. Abilities can range from a full self-heal to uninterruptible spell casting for a brief time. Ability points become progressively more difficult to obtain as the character gains ranks in RvR. However, the difference between a high rank and low rank player can be immense even when they have equal equipment and are the same level.

The Trials of Atlantis Expansion brought a new depth to DAoC's PvE game. A wide range of ability lines are learned by completing a long series of quests. These quests often require several hours and large groups to complete. This expansion also introduced the most powerful items, which often require a large number of players and a high degree of organization to obtain, in the game.

The Darkness Rising expansion allows players to learn some of the basic abilities previously only available to other class archetypes. For example, a Warrior can learn a rudimentary healing spell or a ranged direct damage spell. These are the weakest type of post-50 advancement abilities.

Server types

  • Normal [3]. These servers are the primary set for game play. PvP is limited to designated areas and allows the player more control on what they want to do.
  • Classic [4] - on which PvE regions, abilities, and items from the Trials of Atlantis expansion have been disabled. The character enhancement spell system has also been altered so the character receiving these spells must be grouped with and remain relatively close to the caster. (due to recent cluster with classic players and normal ruleset players this server type MAY be removed completely)
  • Player vs. player [5] - A single server has been setup to allow free for all PvP combat in almost all areas. Realm affiliations have been removed so unlike regular servers, its possible for a player to visit areas in all 3 realms. Players on this server can attack each other regardless of class, race, or realm origin.
  • Cooperative [6] - A single server similar to the Normal servers, except the designated RvR zones have been modified. Instead of RvR, the three realms cooperate and attack NPC controlled keeps, which are located in the RvR zones, and other PvE areas. A high percentage of the PvE action takes place in Darkness Falls dungeon. High level enemies defend the locations where PvP gameplay would normally take place. All classes and races are opened up to the player and teleportation is possible between realms.
  • Test [7] - There are also two test servers available, allowing players to test different abilities that may become possible in upcoming changes in game mechanics prior to Mythic fully implementing them.

Realm vs. Realm

Realm versus Realm is the main focus of Dark Age of Camelot. The storyline revolves around what happens after the death of King Arthur, and his united kingdom falling apart (in this fantasy setting). Albion, Hibernia, and Midgard are in a three way war against each other and constantly war for control of powerful relics, keeps and towers, and even control of the entrance to Darkness Falls.

Expansions

Mythic has produced seven expansions (5 retail, 2 free) for DAoC.

Note: A recent patch is mentioned in this list due to its impact on one of the expansions.

Shrouded Isles

(SI, November 12, 2002) - Added 6 new classes (Necromancer, Reaver; Savage, Bonedancer; Valewalker, Animist), 3 races (Inconnu, Valkyn, Sylvan) and a brand new land for each realm near the size of the old world (in addition to the old world), which also includes epic dungeons. This expansion pack is now a free download.

Foundations

(Housing, June 18, 2003) - Free expansion which added player housing and consignment merchants (the ability for players to set up a shop and sell in-game items, whether crafted or loot from monsters).

Trials of Atlantis

(ToA, October 28, 2003) - Added 3 new races (Half-Ogre, Frostalf, Shar) and high level content and zones (which are the same for each realm), also includes new terrain graphics for all areas of the game (including trees). This expansion pack is now a free download, as of October 31, 2005. The expansion featured items known as artifacts, and extra abilities known as "Master Levels".

Artifacts, obtained through hidden encounters, only become useful when the player finds the three scrolls hoarded by Atlantean monsters. Furthermore, artifacts must gain experience in order to reach their full potential.

New Frontiers

(NF, June 22, 2004) - Remake of the game's realm vs. realm warfare (free, required expansion). This included making the entire frontiers one zone (instead of each realm's frontier being separated), redesigning keeps and adding towers, and adding numerous types of siege apparatus.

Catacombs

(Cata, December 7, 2004) - Added 5 new classes (Heretic; Vampiir, Bainshee; Warlock, Valkyrie), instanced dungeons (where players entering certain areas get their own private dungeon to hunt in), and new zones and quests with an emphasis on faster and easier leveling. Also includes new player model graphics and new graphics for all the games' dungeons (except Darkness Falls). As of February 6, 2007, players may now download and venture into the depths of the Catacombs for free. This expansion can be downloaded via the website for no extra charge.

Darkness Rising

(DR, October 11, 2005) ( February 1, 2006 in Europe) - Introduced Champion weapons (much like epic armor), player mounts (horses), Champion Levels and subclassing (small abilities from another class), new dungeons and instanced zones for the new Champion Quests and new graphics for the game world's models (such as barns, haystacks and forts, this includes the Darkness Falls dungeon and the capital cities) which are following the design ideas presented in Mythic's new graphics for the starting cities. Darkness Rising was also the first paid expansion to Dark Age of Camelot able to be downloaded. A trailer has been created by GOA to showcase this expansion. Mythic also introduced a new island, called Agramon, which acts as a central island that connected the frontiers of the three realms. Unlike the rest of the Frontiers zones, there are no keeps and any player from any realm can open the gates that border the island.

Labyrinth of the Minotaur

(LotM, November 5, 2006) - Features include a new race (The Minotaur), a new hybrid class (The Mauler), a new RvR dungeon, Mythrians, and additional Champion Levels (6-10). Introducing the largest RVR dungeon in Camelot history (Labyrinth) with access by all three realms located on Agrammon Island. Labyrinth introduced mythrians a new item slot, when equppied these myths will give small bonuses to your character. Until this expansion, Mythic had never given each of the three realms the same race or class.[8]

New New Frontiers

(NNF, September 5, 2007) - While officially a patch and not an expansion, there were significant changes to the layout of keeps and towers as well as a revamp of the Siegecraft line (including the addition siege towers and tents) in patch 1.90. The playerbase is referring to this patch as the "New, New Frontiers."

The new Hibernian Dragon from the Dragon's Revenge Campaign

Campaigns

Campaigns are like free expansions; however they build on the world that is already available in Dark Age of Camelot. They are six month long story arcs of dynamic content. During the six month period, new content is added in two-week intervals to help further the storyline. Because these changes are dynamic, some story lines will come to a close as others open. Periodic flash-point events within the story will have great effect on the world, and as chapters conclude, the stories and parts of the world they affect may change dramatically. In some parts of the story, player participation will ultimately be the catalyst for these story and world changes.[9]

A Dragons Revenge- (Back in 2007) - Beginning in the winter of the year of the Labyrinth, the dragons began to act erratically. At first it was a mystery to the villagers living outside of Camelot, Tir na nÓg, and Jordheim, but in time it became apparent: the Dragons were on the move. No longer would they remain in their lairs, tucked away in the far reaches of the realms. Flying overhead, their enormous wings flapping in deafening rhythm, they were a terror never before witnessed in the small outlying villages of the capital cities. No village is safe from the terror of fire and ice raining from the skies! Striking without warning, they incinerate everything in their paths as the scholars of the realms struggle to discover the mystery behind these unusual attacks.[10]

In this campaign players were asked to help fight off the powerful and growing dragons. Each dragon had spawned five adolescent dragons and recruited a powerful army. In a race to save the land, players had to fight off the evil Dragonsworn army, defeat the adolescent dragons, and save their realms by destroying the realm dragons.

Storyline

Each realm has a unique but parallel storyline, which is expanded with retail expansions. The European distributors occasionally add their own writings and quests about the realms and their inhabitants.

In the original Realm zones, smaller cities in the realm need protection against monsters common to many other RPGs. Albion is menaced by undead raised by Morgana, Hibernia is torn apart by the Unseelie Court and Siabra, and Midgard by the treacherous Blodfelag.

Shrouded Isles - Each realm is called to assist a smaller allied realm against a large enemy. In Albion, the Drakoran have besieged the final strongholds of Lady Lile's Avalonians. Hibernia has come to the aid of Hybrasil, where the Sylvans face extinction at the hands of the Fomorians. Midgards ancestral home at Aegir has seen the Last of the Troll Fathers hunted down by the Morvalt. This expansion is now free.

Trials of Atlantis - The ruins of Atlantis have been discovered, as well as a portal to another Plane where the ancient Atlanteans underwent their trials. How did Atlantis come to its end and what powers were left behind? The Trials remain in a form twisted by the passage of time and the departure of the denizens of Atlantis. Ancient artifacts wait to be discovered and have their power and secrets revealed by learned scholars. Familiar figures from Greek and Egyptian mythology make their appearance in a new land waiting to be discovered. This expansion is now free.

Catacombs - A nemesis has taken control of the power within the Darkspire, gaining control of most of the denizens of an underground realm's race. Arawn, previously referenced as an ally of the Avalonians and patron of the Inconnu, has had his realm overrun by revolting dead and enslaved Inconnu. The Shar are only able to hold their ground at the gates of their Otherworld citadel. The Kobolds have been forced to open the secrets of the undercity to outsiders in a desperate bid for survival. This expansion is now free.

Darkness Rising - The King of the realm has returned to fight back a growing rebellion. Further investigations will reveal a conspiracy with a dark power behind the rebellion. To become a Champion of the Realm the player must defeat the demonic evil behind the unrest and return peace to the land. This expansion is now free.

Labyrinth of the Minotaur - The ancient race of Minotaur has returned to the lands of Albion, Midgard, and Hibernia to reclaim powerful but corrupt relics hidden long ago by their ancestors. Lust for these relics once brought about the downfall of the powerful Minotaur kingdom and their evil influence now threatens the kingdoms of Man. This expansion is now free.

Economics

Dark Age of Camelot promotes economic activity by means of a player market, for the sale and acquisition of items such as weapons and armor, and a system of Tradeskills which enable a character to create player-usable items, such as weapons and armor.

Currency in the game includes several denominations, valued as follows: 100 copper = 1 silver, 100 silver = 1 gold, 1000 gold = 1 platinum, 1000 platinum = 1 mythril. (Although mythril is a denomination of currency, you cannot have a mythril on any one character; the amount of coin will not go beyond 200 platinum.) Players may accumulate currency by engaging in RvR combat, PvE hunting, crafting by means of tradeskills, trinketing, and the sale of items on the in-game player market. Players defeated in RvR and monsters slain in PvE all drop some quantity of coin which either falls automatically into the winning character's backpack, or can be picked up manually.

Tradeskills - Each character created by a player is able to study and advance in any of the six tradeskills, which enable the character to create player-usable items which can in turn be sold to other players on the player market for coin. Tradeskills include: armorcraft (heavy armor), tailoring (light armor), weaponcraft (swords, shields), fletching (staves, bows, arrows), alchemy (poisons, dyes), and spellcrafting. Alchemy also enables a character to 'imbue' armor and weapons with special magical abilities, such as a damage spell which is triggered when an enemy strikes a character's armor, or a spell which heals a character whenever the character chooses to trigger the spell. Spellcrafting enables a character to imbue armor and weapons with a wide range of magic which serves to improve a character's statistics, skills, and resistances to damage. Initially players had restrictions on which tradeskills they could train, but characters are no longer restricted in their Tradeskill choice. Any character can choose any Tradeskill, and can raise the level of every Tradeskill they possess without restriction.

Support skills - All of the six tradeskills are dependent upon a variety of support skills, such as metalworking, clothworking, leatherworking, and woodworking. An armorcrafter's score in metalworking will automatically improve as the character creates metal-based items which advance its score in Armorcraft. However, support skills such as metalworking will not necessarily advance at the same rate as the primary tradeskill, so characters may from time to time have to devote themselves to improving their score in one or more support skills.

Trinketing - Monsters defeated in PvE frequently drop player-usable items such as armor and weapons. Characters with sufficiently high support skills (such as metalworking, etc) can salvage these items for their raw materials, and then craft new items to be sold to NPC merchants, usually for significantly more coin than might be obtained by selling the original dropped item to an NPC merchant. This can be a significant source of income for characters with high Tradeskill scores.

Woodworking - A character's skill in woodworking can also be used in the RvR zone known as New Frontiers to repair towers and keeps damaged by members of enemy realms. Making such repairs earns a character Realm Points with which to purchase new or improved Realm Abilities. However, in order to make such repairs a character must obtain wood, either from NPC merchants, Master Level 1 Convoker spell "Summon Wood", or by salvaging drops.

Player market - The player markets are located in the housing zones unique to each realm, where no combat of any kind is permitted. Any character may enter the housing zone for its own realm and make purchases from the player market by means of an NPC known as the Market Explorer. However, in order to sell items on the player market a character must have access to a player-owned house which is equipped with an NPC merchant known as a Consignment Merchant.

Housing - Any character with sufficient coin may purchase a house, but only one house may be purchased per player account on traditional servers, however on the co-op and pvp server, you can purchase up to 3, one per realm per character. Any character on a player's account may make use of a house owned by a character on that player's account. Players are also able to set permissions for their house to allow the characters of other players to use the house and its various assets, such as a Consignment Merchant, a Grandmaster Merchant, tools such as a forge or lathe, or a Vaultkeeper, among others.

Guilds

Guilds offer social, economic and PvE/PvP advantages that contrast with or exceed soloing and 'pick-up groups'. Each guild comes with its own chat channel, in-game ranking system, territory claiming ability, guild banking system, guild housing, emblem, and reward system in the form of guild bounty points and merit points. Each guild leader (or leaders, as the game provides for multiple leaders) can define their own set of rules and goals. The guild leader(s) can customize the privileges, (such as inviting new members, speaking in alliance chat, and claiming captured Towers for the guild) of each Rank within the guild. Furthermore, alliances can be formed between player guilds, which offer up a conjoined chat channel for all guilds within one alliance to communicate. A guild can be formed by a full group; the leader pays 400 gold to the Guild NPC and once all group players accept, the guild is formed, with the group leader as the Guild leader.

Subscriber base

When DAOC first launched, the subscriber base quickly rose up to almost 250,000[11] subscribers by July, 2002 and then started to fall off to about 210,000 subscribers by January 2003[11] where "Shrouded Isles" expansion was released and populations climbed back up slightly, then in November 2003 populations once again rose to 250,000 with the release of the "Trials of Atlantis" expansion and remained at that level until October 2004 when market competition caused these numbers to gradually decrease over time. As of January 2008, the estimated number of subscribers was 50,000.[11]

Server emulation

A project titled Dawn of Light exists, providing a server emulator for Dark Age of Camelot as well as portal software allowing Dark Age of Camelot players to connect to a number of publicly registered, unofficial game servers.

References

External links


Gaming

Up to date as of February 01, 2010

From Wikia Gaming, your source for walkthroughs, games, guides, and more!

Dark Age of Camelot
DAoC UK box art

Developer(s) Mythic Entertainment
Publisher(s) Mythic Entertainment (US), Wanadoo (DE/FR/UK/SP/IT)
Engine Gamebryo Engine
Release date October 10, 2001
Genre MMORPG
Mode(s) Multiplayer
Age rating(s) ESRB: T
Platform(s) PC
Media CD
Credits | Soundtrack | Codes | Walkthrough

The following has been directly copied from a press release by Mythic Entertainment.

Dark Age of Camelot is a next generation massively-multiplayer online role-playing game ("MMORPG"), and features Realm vs. Realm combat, Mythic's unique take on Player vs. Player action, multiple class and race combinations, a robust trade skill system, and the most comprehensive player Guild system in any MMORPG. The world of Dark Age of Camelot features three Realms at war - Midgard, Hibernia and Albion. Based on the mythologies of Viking-era Scandinavia, ancient Ireland, and Arthurian Britain, respectively, the once-peaceful Realms began to battle after the death of King Arthur. Players quest, fight monsters, form guilds and eventually gain enough power to defend their Realm from enemies. Since its release in October 2001, Dark Age of Camelot has received critical acclaim, including Online Game of the Year by Computer Games Magazine and Computer Gaming World, and PC Game of the Year by USA Today and MSNBC. Dark Age of Camelot continues to grow and expand worldwide and has proven to be an enduring success.

This article uses material from the "Dark Age of Camelot" article on the Gaming wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.







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