Questions by Cody
“Micajah” Bye, Managing Editor
Answers by Chuck
Kallenbach, Game Designer for SOE Denver
Massively multiplayer gamers are often some of the most competitive
people you’ll ever meet in a virtual space. They like having
the best equipment, stats, and strategies, and they’re often
willing to do whatever it takes to attain that. However,
there’s rarely any way for these gamers to climb to the top
of the ladder and show the world that they are the best.
Sony Online Entertainment’s Denver studio is trying to change
that with their recently launched Championship Qualifier tournaments
and general tournament ladders for Legends
of Norrath. Although it may not be a true MMOG, the style="font-style: italic;">Legends of Norrath
online trading card game is home to many MMOG gamers, especially from
EverQuest and EverQuest II. Recently Cody “Micajah”
Bye sat down with SOE Denver game designer Chuck Kallenbach to discuss
what’s next for the LoN card game and what sort of events we
may be seeing in the future!
style="font-style: italic;">The new cards in
the latest LoN expansion have energized the play environment.
Ten Ton Hammer: With the
Forsworn expansion launch, what’s next for style="font-style: italic;">Legends of Norrath?
For those that may not check the official website every day, what sort
of events are you planning for January?
four Winner’s Choice Tournaments, a Loot Re-Roll, a Promo
Weekend, a Draftmania Weekend, and a two-day Championship Qualifier,
cards for the Trakanon Raid Deck start dropping in the MMOs on the
18th. These cards will let players build a deck to host a 1-versus-4
raid, and play as Trakanon himself!
Ten Ton Hammer: How has
the Forsworn expansion gone over with the general public? Are players
excited about the new cards?
from Forsworn have energized the play environment. Zealotry and Bag of
the Tinkerers, just to name two cards, have spawned exciting new deck
types. The big news items, of course, are the multiplayer formats,
which we’re getting rave reviews for.
Ten Ton Hammer: The staff
at Ten Ton Hammer has played through a number of the raids, and they
take a massive amount of precision from the players. Have you had any
requests to lower the difficulty of the raids?
raids do require players to cooperate both in deckbuilding and
discussing tactics, we haven’t had requests to lower the
difficulties. I think the players like the bar raised high on these fun
Ten Ton Hammer: You have
several “loot” oriented weekends planned in the
future, including several promo cards dropping in EQ and EQ2. Have you
had success with these sort of events in the past? Are these cards
exclusive to players that play EQ or EQ2, or will the card-game-only
players eventually have access to the promo cards?
weekends are always exciting times for all of our players. Since we
have an interesting blend of TCG players and MMO players who are fans
of LoN, cards travel pretty quickly from one environment to the other.
So the cards that drop in the MMOs can be found in the Trade lobby for
players who only play the TCG, and vice versa.
style="font-style: italic;">Every month the LoN
developers add two new loot cards into LoN for EQ and EQ2.
Ten Ton Hammer: On
January 11, you did a loot re-roll. Why did this occur? Are you just
adding two new cards to the booster packs? Or are you substituting two
pieces of loot for two different pieces of loot?
we add two new loot cards (one for EQ and one for EQII) to the loot
tables of unopened booster packs. This is in addition to the loot cards
that already exist. We also distribute the new loot cards among the
already opened packs. This means that any player that's ever opened a
booster pack has a chance to get one of the new loot cards on a Re-Roll
Day, automatically. It's a lot of fun, and the players look forward to
the new loot cards every month.
Ten Ton Hammer: Several
new tournaments are listed over the next few months; how have the
tournament brackets been received by the community? Are players pleased
with the way things are progressing?
love the variety and challenges provided by new tournament types.
We’re doing our best to provide fun events for all kinds of
players, whether you’re from a TCG background or
you’ve found us through the MMOs.
Ten Ton Hammer:
What’s involved with a “Loot Tournament
Weekend”? How do players win the special cards? Do they
simply enter the tournament, or must they win something?
Tournament Weekend, anyone that participates in a Loot Tournament
receives the special promo card and loot card just for participating.
Unlike our fixed start-time events, Loot Tournaments have ongoing
queues that run day and night for several days, so players have lots of
opportunities to pick up these cool special cards.
Ten Ton Hammer: You
recently held your first LoN Championship Qualifier, and the prizes for
the qualifier are pretty staggering: $500 for the winner plus airfare
to GenCon Indy is nothing to sneeze at. Who was the previous winner and
what kind of deck did they use to win? How many players were in the
the the first LoN CQ held in mid-December almost 200 hopefuls entered
the tournament. The top 16 players then continued on to Day 2. The
winner was Leto, an experienced TCG player who came to Legends of
Norrath from another of our games, Star
Chamber. He played a 50-card Scout deck with the Wood Elf
avatar that can exert opposing units. His deck provided plenty of
health and defense for his avatar, while protecting himself with Lethal
Resolve and dealing the killing blow with Barbarian Hunters.
style="font-style: italic;">If a players wins a
Championship Qualifier, he gets a free trip to GenCon Indy.
Ten Ton Hammer: The next
qualifier begins on the 26th of January and runs into the 27th. What
can we expect from the next round? Will the number of players increase?
How will the new cards impact the next round of play?
types are emerging every week as players find ways to integrate
Forsworn cards into their deckbuilding strategies. I expect
we’ll see more players in the next Championship Qualifier
because the metagame is less stratified now, and that gives lots of
players a chance to win.
Ten Ton Hammer: When will
we be seeing details on the next Legends of Norrath expansion set? What
sort of cards might be included?
It’ll be a month or so before any previews for Set 3 are
released. We’re deep in design right now, and I
can’t give you any juicy details at this point. There are a
few character classes from the MMOs that we haven’t featured
yet, so you can expect LoN cards that feature them in the next
Ten Ton Hammer: Finally,
is there anything else you’d like to tell the Ten Ton Hammer
readers about Legends
of Norrath and all of your upcoming events?
keep an eye on our Event Calendar, because we have all kinds of
different events coming up. You’re sure to find something fun
to fit your timetable and play preference. Drafts, championship
tournaments, participation promos and MMO tie-ins, we’ve got
it all coming up in the next few weeks.
tournaments? Would you be interested in participating in one? href="http://forums.tentonhammer.com/showthread.php?p=201354#post201354">Let
know on the forums!
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