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Sony Online Entertainment has released an updated schedule of upcoming content and features in a September roadmap for Vanguard: Saga of Heroes.

The team has been continuing to work on performance upgrades that reduced network lag and optimized the database end of the game. An upcoming end-game raid dungeon, the Cave of Wonders, has been pushed back some in its anticipated release until the optimizations are complete, but will be launched in four seperate installments. This dungeon is expected to set a foundation for progressing gear in the game.

Vanguard's mentoring system will be expanded with the introduction of Mentor Stones. These stones will be found at the entrances of any dungeon and will allow players to choose to be set at the appropriate level for fighting in that particular dungeon. The team hopes that this will give players a challenge and while rewarding desirable items.

The expected release plan, in order, is:

  • Major Performance Upgrades
  • Best Buff Only Conversion
  • Mentor Stones
  • Additional Mentor Stones Functionality
  • Cave of Wonders – Entry Wing
  • Cave of Wonders- Additional Wings

For more information, visit the official Vanguard: Saga of Heroes website.

Ann "Cyliena" Hosler, Managing Editor

Follow me on Twitter: @Cyliena

Vanguard Celebrates

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Vanguard: Saga of Heroes celebrates its sixth anniversary today after a year of drastic change.

Having gone free-to-play in August 2012, SOE’s hardcore fantasy MMO (that isn’t named EverQuest), is undergoing a lot of other changes beyond its revenue model. After the many stability issues the game originally suffered from, there has been a hefty undertaking to improve the game in all areas, one that is having obviously positive results.

I had the chance to go on an adventure through Telon with Producer Harvey Burgess and Game Designer Cory LeFever, who spoke of the 6th anniversary and the changes that have been brought to Vanguard.

Upon entering the Isle of Dawn, the beginner area, there is a pleasingly nostalgic feel for anyone like me who has been playing MMOs for more than a decade. Yet, beyond the urge to jump into the past, there is definitely an appeal with the sheer size of the game and the fact you can pretty much get to everything you see off near the horizon (something claimed by many MMOs but rarely fully realized).

Vanguard Free to Play Trailer

Vanguard is free to play, as detailed last week, but the trailer that should have gone with it is now up too! As before - players who join for free have six races, seven classes, four slots, and other restrictions like a two plat coin limit, a 15 quest limit, and a ban from housing. Now the real trick is, have they fixed all the other problems the game had? 

Fancy trying out a high fantasy MMO and not be charged a dime for it? You’re in luck, as SoE has you covered. Joining their growing list of free-to-play games is Vanguard: Saga of Heroes. With a wide range of classes available to play in an expansive, seamless world, this revamped MMORPG might quench that thirst for something different.

Converting a veteran MMO like Vanguard to free-to-play is no easy matter, so we asked the experts. I recently got the chance to discuss the revamp with Salim Grant, Creative Director for Vanguard: Saga of Heroes.  During the interview, we touched on the reasons behind the switch and updating the game for a modern audience. 

ZAM: Before we get started, can you give us a quick recap of what Vanguard is all about for those readers who might not have looked at the game before? What can players look forward to that's unique to the game?

Salim Grant: Vanguard Saga of Heroes is a fantasy, massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) set in the world of Telon, which is a vast, ancient world filled with adventure and magic. Vanguard is a game about freedom, and the world of Telon is filled with exotic locations. Players take a role in one our unique classes and can challenge dangerous creatures through our groundbreaking and dynamic combat systems. 

Vanguard Goes F2P...Now

Well, I dunno how that happened, but Vanguard is now F2P for all. They apparently saw fit to abandon the August 15th date and launch today, which is just as well - I've actually been curious about taking a crack at the game since I left it behind forever ago. And, as promised, all race/class restrictions have been removed, the Heroic Journey Quest is enabled, and tons of dungeons have been revamped for better itemization. 

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