Subtitles by @thesirren Hail, backers and fans, and welcome to a very special art update for Pillars II. Over the course of the crowdfunding campaign we've shared with you improvements made to environments, NPCs, character creation and much more. But sometimes it's difficult to tell just how much something is improved, until you compare it with the first game. We are here today to show you just how far we've come and what's involved in making Pillars II gorgeous. Take a look. Level up and inventory screens. The paper doll view in Pillars II received substantial changes which is very noticeable when comparing footage. New lighting system updates and a new setting for the story allowed us to take the design and quality of characters above and beyond the first Pillars. New custom idle animations add more life and personality to your character and companions. Everything has been redesigned from the ground up to help immerse the player even more in Pillars II. Immersive environments. Thanks to our new lighting system we are able to seamlessly blend our 3D characters and props into our 2D backgrounds.
Combined with the addition of rolling cloud shadows, vegetation and weather systems, Pillars II is shaping up to be a much more dynamic experience than the first game. Animal companion idles. Our most adorable art improvements are the animal companion idles. If you stand still for a long enough period of time the bear will plop himself down on the ground, and the wolf even chases his tail. Sometimes it's the subtle things that add a lot to the atmosphere of a game. And it's certainly gives our animal companions a personality of their own. Spell comparisons. Our VFX improvements in Pillars II surpass Pillars I tenfold. VFX artists John Lewis and James Melilli have been hard at work adding new effects to every single spell in the game. Take a look at some comparisons to see the difference. As you can see the art in Deadfire has come a long way from Pillars I.
In other news we are excited to announce that pre-orders are now live for Pillars of Eternity II. The game launches on April 3rd, so mark your calendars. By pre-ordering you'll get "The Captain's Footlocker" when the game launches. This contains three items that will help you start your adventure in the Deadfire in style. You'll get a special in-game pet – Beakhead, the white hawk. A special weapon, St. Drogga's skull, a saber crafted with the skull of a martyr.