Darkfall gets a massive makeover

Hellfreeze expansion released.

Aventurine has unleashed a massive new expansion for MMO Darkfall that will graphically overhaul the entire world of Agon.

It's called Hellfreeze. Cringe. It's 6GB big.

Aventurine has spent a year implementing a "fresh new look, feel and atmosphere" and, in some cases, an "extreme makeover" for monsters.

Dungeons - 17 of them - have been "re-themed" and "re-designed", many to include vendors with items and quests. In addition, "entirely new dungeons" have been added to each capital city next to the bank for beginners to explore.

Hellfreeze itself follows the arrival of two great new evils (read: bosses) to the world. One is known simply as The Demon, the other, The Ice Dragon. With them are the Gorra Dar and Gorra Slave, Gray Ork Executioner, Shadow Spirit, Svartdvergir Doombringer, Beastman Devastator and Deathless Servant.

Aventurine has "shifted and redistributed" monster spawns, and dungeons have had a "notable boom" in angry occupants. And intriguingly, "many" of the monsters you face will now level up when they kill players.

Hellfreeze also brings Funflags that can be placed anywhere on the map and serve as start and finish posts for races on Funhulks. Capture the flag-style Player Flags have been added, too, as have treasure map drops from monsters.

There are two new mounts - a speedy Blue-Tailed Runner and fearsome Tribeland Bear - and two new ships: a small, versatile Launch and bigger but sleep Junk.

Those are the headline additions, but there's plenty more besides. Spells have been reworked, AI has been upgraded, areas remodelled, animation tweaked, social bits and bobs improved and large scale battles optimised.

Hellfreeze will be Darkfall's third free major expansion to date.

Darkfall launched last February after years of development and scored first 2/10 on Eurogamer and then 4/10 - there was a storm of controversy surrounding the whole process.

Perhaps these significant changes merit a re-re-review. Or perhaps I'm playing devil's advocate.

Details on how to download the update and exactly what's in it are on the game's forum.

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