We are pleased to announce that, once again, we will be holding a charity drive to support Children's Hospital. Last year we thought it would be a great idea to hold a charity drive and raise money to help those who are sick and less fortunate over the holiday season. Players managed to raise over $10,000.00 for Children's Hospital in New York.

Like last year, players will have the ability to donate via paypal or the mail, and everyone who donates will receive one of three new charity medals that will appear on your profile page. Players will also have the ability to win a variety of prizes which will range from game testing, to console games, dvd's, and more.

To help us announce this year's charity drive, we got Cash Cunningham, the Board Chairman of Children's Hospital to thank players who donated last year and tell you a little about this year's charity drive:

Dear “Dark Throne Players”:

On behalf of the Women & Children’s Hospital of Buffalo, please accept our heartfelt thanks to all of you who went online and made a donation in last year’s charity drive to benefit the hospital. As a group you successful raised $10,363; a portion of which we gave to the Child Life Department to use for the purchase of toys for patients spending their holiday in the hospital. The remainder of your donation went to the help the Hematology/Oncology Unit; a unit which cares for 98% of the patients under the age of four diagnosed with some form of cancer or blood disorder.

We are most appreciative of your efforts on behalf of the young patients we serve and would like to thank you in advance for participation in this year’s charity drive. Please know that by supporting Lazarus Software in their benefit for the hospital you are enabling our doctors, nurses and health care professionals to provide the very best care for the more than 45,000 patients who are treated here each year.

On behalf of the staff at the Women & Children’s Hospital of Buffalo Foundation and our Board of Directors a most heartfelt thank you.

Very truly yours,

Cash Cunningham
Board Chairman
Women & Children’s Hospital of Buffalo Foundation

For more information about this Hospital and the foundation, please visit http://foundation.wchob.org and look for our official Charity Drive page to go up on Dark Throne very soon. On this page we will be including all of the important information such as mailing addresses, contact information for the hospital, and specifics about how to donate online.

Just as promised, we began putting in updates and new features much more rapidly than we have in the past. November saw 5 Beta updates that contained a variety of tweaks, new features, and bug fixes. A big focus of this month was on polishing up current features and putting in changes that players have been asking for.

We spent a lot of time this month adding new topics to the In Development section of the forum, looking for player feedback on a variety of subjects and features. Based upon forum feedback, we do plan on adding a log transfer system for outside recruiting, and we should be making some changes to what happens when 10 spies complete a successful recon mission.

More topics have been added to the In Development section to go along with this community update. We are looking for player feedback in regards to a new spy missions, a change to the attack ranges, and a few other topics. Your feedback will make a difference in our decision to put in or change these features.

A new Dark Throne survey will be put up very soon, and we are looking for every player to participate in it. The results of this survey could determine what features will or will not make it into the full version of the game, so make sure your vote does count and it is important. We will post on the news page as soon as the survey goes live.

In our previous community update, we talked about the addition and testing of new spy missions. We still plan on doing that after we get back the survey results and feedback from the new In Development topics. Some of the new spy missions require gameplay tweaks, and we want to get player feedback before the missions go into the game.

The next big change the Beta test will see is an all new version of the recruiter. We have had a variety of issues with the recruiter, and are redesigning it from the ground up for the full version of the game, but will be porting over a great deal of changes into the Beta recruiter. These changes should fix all of the credit issues that have been reported and should make the overall process easier. Part of these recruiter updates have already gone into the game, and we will continue to update it over the next couple of weeks.

The first 4 weeks of the Omega test have gone really well. We have used this time to go over attack logs, player feedback, and a lot of other information that we have been collecting. Over the next couple of weeks we will be setting up an In Development section in the Omega forums and will be looking for player feedback in regards to balance tweaks in experience, overall rank, pillage, and spying equations. We plan on fixing all random equation bugs and equation related balance issues during this time.

A big release we have coming up in December is the testing and release of what we are calling Omega Build 2. We used the stress tests and the current version of the Omega test to collect all of the bug reports and technical data we could. We got a lot of good data over the course of all of these tests, and a month ago began working on code improvements for the core structure of the game.

Build 2 will act like the current Omega test that is running now, but players will notice a difference in game stability and speed, and we have also made improvements to many of the core pages in the game. Players will see a new version of the attack listings, levels page, rankings, and more. Once this version has been tested, and goes live, we will immediately begin adding in new pages and features. Players will be seeing updates every week until we have the full version of the game completely in the Omega test. Account stats will not be affected by build 2 going in.

Our charity will be running until the beginning of 2006, and we are hoping for another successful donation period.

Players should be noticing that we are starting to polish up game pages and tighten all of the features, equations, and systems. We are going to continue to do that over the next couple of months, along with putting in all new features.

These next few months will be a great opportunity for players, because player feedback will make a direct difference in features and changes that go into the game.

As always we are extremely grateful for everyone who has helped us test this game and given us feedback. Without player support and feedback, we would not exist, and we aim to please when we launch the full version of the game in the near future.

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