"I hear the Dawnguard are reforming.
Might think about joining up myself."
By Gavin Dady
Welcome back, friends, to the latest update for The Elder Scrolls: Call to Arms. It's been a long time since the last blog and a lot has happened, so, let's dive right in.
Chapter 3: Dawnguard
June sees the pre-order for the first of Chapter 3: Dawnguard sets. These are the core sets for the two main antagonists of the Chapter, the eponymous Dawnguard and their mortal enemies, the Volkihar Vampires. These two core sets give you the central members of each faction, along with their closest allies and some heavy support. For the Dawnguard we have Isran, the Armoured Troll and three Dawnguard warriors. Isran is a powerful warrior and can use the Dawnguard's unique sun-based magic as well to better best his Vampire foes. The Armoured Troll is big, angry and covered in armour plates. It's dangerous and hard to kill, which just about says it all. The Dawnguard Warriors, with their unique Brigandine style armour, are the strong arm of the Dawnguard and are competent fighters who are well equipped and armoured.
The Volkihar Core set likewise gives you the starting of your own Vampire Clan. Lord Harkon is present in both his humanoid and monstrous Vampire Master form. He is a deadly opponent in either form, a master of weapons and the sinister blood magic. Alongside him is Orthjolf, an ambitious underling, and three of his Vampire court, again proficient in both magic and melee.
These two sets will be available for preorder at the end of June and should ship at the end of July.
Chapter 3 Card Pack
The card pack for Chapter 3 has been delayed slightly, but we are aiming for an August release. Rather than wait for the normal last Friday of the month, I'm aiming to release this as soon as it is available. Preorders will start at the end of July and we'll ship as soon as we get it back from the printers. It is in layout right now, after rules balancing and testing went right up to the wire. This does mean the cards for the first few sets will be out after you get your hands on the minis, but that gives you time to get them painted and ready for the table. If the delay on the cards extends past the end of August, we'll look at some PDF cards for the interim, as we did for the very first few expansion sets in Chapter One.
The interim Dragon rules are out of public playtest and will be going into layout later this month. These will be a PDF download for public feedback and are an interim step to the full and complete Dragon rules that will appear as part of Chapter 4, alongside the updated Draugr as playable faction rule. Look for the interim Dragon rules later in August.
The epic tale of the supplement that lets you play through an epic tale continues. Thanehold has been set aside for some time as we worked on other projects - not least of which was the rulebook revision (more on which in a moment). Now it is time to return to that tale. We've decided that some of the content in Thanehold was a good enough basis to stand alone. To that end, we are creating a stand-alone product (or maybe products) that will allow you to do two things we have been asked for again and again - Expanded Character Progression and Settlement Building. For now, all I will say is that we are working on these two, and they may appear as one product with both and other materials, or they may appear as two smaller products. I'll talk more about them and our development of them with the designers in future blogs. With those elements stripped out, Thanehold can become a purer version of its original intent - a narrative journey that will take you through an epic tale. It will still be compatible with everything we have released and are working on, but you won't be required to have access to everything to enjoy the story. It will contain everything you need to run it with just the core set.
The corrections and revisions to the core rulebook are mostly complete. We need to do some final editing for flow and maybe look at the order of sections, however, our editor most experienced with TES:CTA is currently on parental leave. I believe we'll get a better product by keeping the team consistent throughout, so we have a short delay as they bring their youngling into the world. They then have some edits before we send the manuscript off to layout. We then will have several rounds of checks, revisions, double checks and so on before we release the draft PDF for public comment. I can also guarantee that the second I send it off to be uploaded, I will notice a typo. As they say in another franchise, "This is the way". We will then have a period of public feedback. Our goal will be to look for typos, inconsistencies and ambiguities rather than proposing changes to the rules. Our intent has always been to clarify the existing rules, not a version 2.
Histories of the Empire Volume 2: Steam and Shadow
We are very proud of our first campaign expansion, HotEv1:TSR, and now we are well through the development cycle of the second Volume in our Histories of the Empire, Steam and Shadow. This volume contains no less than two campaign systems and will be the focus of another blog in the future, but rest assured, we are working hard on future Volumes of the Histories of the Empire.
That is all for now. Keep an eye out for upcoming features that will continue to show the sets as they are ready for release.