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Pax Dei

Wilderness Alpha - Learnings

Hello Paxians,

First of all, we’d like to thank everyone who participated in the Wilderness Alpha and took the time to provide us with your invaluable feedback! Overcoming the challenge of inviting more than 100,000 participants was a huge achievement for us, especially as we managed to maintain minimal latency throughout.

While the initial server rush kept our Live Ops team on high alert for a few days, we navigated through the chaos. Our instancing systems performed very well, efficiently handling tens of thousands of building pieces and props. You can read about this in our stories from the War Room post.

The sight of numerous campfires lighting up the night sky and your intricate, impressive buildings gave us goosebumps. The emotional reactions of content creators, whether wide-eyed wonder or tears of joy, upon encountering the ethereal beauty of our world were also very moving.

Olympus Village

But the absolute pinnacle was in the stories you shared: reading about players gathering, exchanging advice and tips about resource spots, trading goods, and forming alliances to try to overcome the challenges of the wild filled us with joy. Observing all these moments, big and small, of emerging gameplay was like witnessing the actual birth of our game.

Making a massive sandbox like Pax Dei is a very unique challenge because it requires thousands of players to become real. As you were able to observe, the world looked totally different at the opening of the servers compared to a few days later. Can you imagine what it might look like after a few months? How will your alliances evolve?

And best of all, there’s a big part of the game that we have yet to talk about in detail: the social fabric and the economy. We are still not fully ready to unveil this part, but we promise it will make Pax Dei deeper and richer.

Now, let’s jump into some of the specifics we saw and heard:


What we’re aiming for in combat is a system that feels like a modern action-oriented MMO combat system, which balances well between player skill and RPG progression. The gear you have will matter a lot, the preparation and how you specialize in a role in a party raiding a dungeon will also matter to you and your group. But so will your skill and your knowledge of the game.

Combat Players Edition 1920x1080

The combat systems in Alpha 1 and Alpha 2 were almost 100% different under the hood. Those who played in both probably noticed the whole system, in terms of gear progression, stats and movement, was very different and much improved. However, we fully agree that we still have a long way to go to get the combat system into a state that feels great.

Combat PvE 1920x1080

As such, the work we’re doing right now - based on your feedback and internal testing - spans a vast spectrum, from improving movement and responsiveness during melee to adding more visual and audio feedback on your actions. We’re confident we’ll get to a state that feels great, but it’ll take some more time and continuous feedback from players.

Of note, we’ve already fixed some performance issues that contributed to the ‘floaty’ feeling of the combat in Alpha 2 and tuned the movement system so melee attacks lock you in place for a shorter duration. Additionally, we’ve rebalanced some of the gear and enemies, including adjusting Shield Bash, which was very overpowered.


Let’s start with apologies for those who wanted to participate in PvP but couldn’t due to the short duration of the test. Many of you still did get to play though, and we got a lot of great feedback from them.

PvP 1920x1080

The full loot was considered extremely hardcore. We somewhat agree! The test was intended to gauge how far we can go with the system. As we’ve said before, we’d like PvP in Pax Dei to be very consequential, and at this point, full loot rights are part of the design in the open PvP areas.

Related to this, constricting PvP to only the Lyonesse region was considered too challenging, as the travel time was very long for many of you. Be reassured we will be expanding PvP to include some options outside of Lyonesse.

PvP winner

What we want to get out of the PvP system is pretty challenging - we know many of you absolutely love PvP, but many of you don’t like it and will not want to play a game that forces you to PvP.

We want Pax Dei to be a game that both types of players can love. What this means in practice is that PvP will continue to be optional in the future, and we will avoid making content that players cannot experience without participating in PvP. 

On the very practical side - Shield Bash did not do great things to PvP and has been nerfed, so you won’t be able to stun-lock people in the future. And when you’re PvP flagged, you’ll no longer see players on the map who are not on your side!

Crafting and resource harvesting

We've made many balancing tweaks to the recipes and are considering improving the resource distribution to make some resources easier to find and others more scarce.

Crafting 1920x1080

We agree that the starting experience in crafting is currently overwhelming and a bit confusing. One of our priorities here is to make balancing changes to address that part of the game specifically, in addition to looking at adding some tutorial steps for the most essential related features.

We also have a long list of suggestions for quality-of-life features related to inventory management, pinning recipes, stack sizes, labeling containers, trading between players, recipe durations, and so on. We’re committed to improving all of this, and the feedback we received was very helpful in prioritizing this work.

Harvest&Craft 1920x1080


We were blown away again at the creations you made. Before the test, there was a lot of debate on whether you’d have the time to build enough in a week, so seeing some clans build full-blown fortified villages and solo players managing to have their little homes fully decorated was pretty amazing.

Building - Players edition

As with crafting, we’re parsing a long list of your suggestions for improving the usability of the building system and for new content. A notable part of the system we plan to improve soon is the permissions, and the first step will be to fine-tune them for the clans with more member levels, to better manage containers, crafting stations, and the building part.

A notable bug we already addressed in our internal build was related to the system used to prevent building on roads. In some locations, this system was overridden by another one. It should no longer be possible to block access to areas the road network is intended to guarantee access to.

Building cities - Players edition


We found and fixed the problem causing inventories to sometimes go out of sync when transitioning between game areas. This was caused by a memory leak in the deferred logout system, sometimes causing an object with the player's inventory state to remain on the server. The actual inventory contents of the players were still correct, as the inventory state is in our backend, but we can see how this was very disruptive to play.

Another hiccup we encountered was a permissions system bug, which allowed some people to access any plot and chest while not being able to access their own. This issue was easily fixed at the individual level with a logout/login, but from a global perspective, it was a critical bug involving several subsystems. We patched the issue during the Alpha, and are now working on a more robust solution by refactoring some of the involved subsystems.

We captured a considerable amount of performance profiling data during the Alpha and have already fixed many issues that caused server and client stuns, so the next time you play, the game should perform more smoothly.

As mentioned in our Stories from the War Room post, we also found and fixed issues in our overall setup that led to the downtime during the first two days. From a technical perspective, the Alpha was a great success, and we got all the information we needed to fix a multitude of issues.

Last but not least, keyboard control rebinding is coming! We can’t promise to have it for Early Access as we still have some issues to overcome, but it is one of our top priorities.

On that topic, we know you are eager to learn more about Early Access. It is coming, for sure, and on time! Stay tuned, we will tell you more, before too long!

Thank you!

Will o' the wisp

Pax vobiscum. - The Mainframe Team