An E3 2006 Preview of SOE / Perpetual's Gods & Heroes
Gods, Heroes, and... Minions?
|by Thurston Hillman|
Due to scheduling issues caused by our fearless military leader Ralph’, I was assigned to the Gods & Heroes interview with Awenyddion. Sadly I really didn’t know a lot about Gods & Heroes and Perpetual Entertainment, but Awenyddion on the other hand proved to be well versed in all of their history and most of their staff. Methinks that having our Industry Relations person instead of Messiah might be better for interviews… sadly Messiah is easier to spell during articles, so I think I will keep him around.
Heading off to the Sony Online Entertainment booth, Awenyddion and I met up with Stieg Hedlund, the Executive Producer of Gods & Heroes (which is to be the first big release of Perpertual Entertainment). Normally when I walk around E3 I am distracted from the shiny booths and my eyes wander over to the nearest booth babe, with Gods & Heroes I completely lost sight of the booth babes (SoE had some pretty fantastic ones too) and centered all my attention on the demo of the game. For the next forty-five minutes my eyes were glued to the giant LCD screen above me; this game was stunning.
The main point that Stieg brought up was the party aspects of Gods & Heroes and how a single player could eventually have up to eight minions working for him. Minions would act as followers to the player, each being typecast in one role or another (healer, tank, range, etc, etc) and the player would have control over their deployment. The fact that a standard party of five players running an instance could have as many as forty-five characters on their respective team (5 players + 40 minions) gives the game a unique party system. This means that even with a small amount of players, you can still have large battles involving multiple characters but without the hassle of managing large groups.
Artificial intelligence for the minions of Gods & Heroes was also high on the list of things Stieg made us aware of. The fact that your minions will actually heal you when needed, and attack the same mobs you are attacking, seems pretty basic in terms of AI use, however Gods & Heroes takes it further. There is a lot of emphasis on formations for your minions, such as making sure to keep those who are susceptible to damage in the back, and have tanks in the front. There are also special moves that minions can learn, as well as new strategies that can be used as the game progresses. Minions will not die permanently, and they can always be upgraded, traded out for other minions in a camp (maximum of 18 minions per camp), or dismissed entirely.