WAR: A Look at Living Guilds with EA Mythic's Josh Drescher and Christian Bales, Part 2
Guilds. How important are they? Well, in Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, they're very important. So important, in fact, that they're getting their own beta phase here pretty soon. With all the other incredible aspects of the game, what's so special about belonging to a guild that it warrants all the hype and hoopla? What has EA Mythic done to bring this aspect of MMO gaming to the forefront? Ten Ton Hammer sat down with Josh Drescher and Christian Bales to find out the answers to those questions and more. Be sure if you missed it to check out part one!
Ten Ton Hammer: In today's gaming industry, what was it you saw in the MMO guilds that motivated you to take on the difficult task of building such an intricate guild system?
You want this keep? BRING IT!
Josh: A lot of the philosophy behind the guild system came directly from Mark Jacob's original vision for the game. Really what had happened with guilds over the years, is they'd initially form kind of organically in early MMO's without a lot of oversight or assistance from developers. As a result, a lot of games came along (including games some of us have worked on in the past) and really treated it like a secondary system. It was really just a chat channel and a roster. Beyond that it was really up to you to try and drive that functionality, organization, and management of the guild from outside the game.
Very early on in the original design of the game, Mark made it clear that we had to do something different. We had to design the game from the ground up with large scale guild interaction in mind (cooperatively and competitively) as being one of the major focuses.
Ten Ton Hammer: What can you tell us about the guild trophies?
Josh: Trophies is something we discussed as an initial type of reward. We'll probably offer a more solidified explanation of what the guild system offers as we get closer to launch. As you know we're getting ready to start the guild beta and really one of the things we're expecting to get a lot of feedback on is the guild reward system. The location, the frequency of certain types of rewards, and whether or not there are things that are lacking. Look for more information to come later in the summer on this.
Ten Ton Hammer: When a guild captures a keep how long can they occupy it and how is it determined who occupies it? Is it first come first serve?
The local Tavern isn't a keep, people!
Christian: The keep is actually claimed by the Standard Bearers inside the guild. When the lord has been defeated at the keep you can go through and the Standard Bearer can actually plant the Standard at the keep. The guild has claimed the keep at that point. They hold the keep based on how much money they have which we're going to tie into the Guild Vault system. We don't have a lot of details we're discussing at this point on that but we're going to tie it in heavily into dues and tithes and those types of systems.
Josh: The Keep Lord is effectively a mercenary and he is only going to stay on your payroll as long as you pay him.
Ten Ton Hammer: How does one become a Standard Bearer? What type of responsibilities do they have?
Christian: The Standard Bearer is actually a title within the guild. It's a rank and is unlocked through the rewards obtained through guild progression. Those titles are assigned out to specific members of the guild by people with permission to do so, like your guild leaders and officers. The role of Standard Bearer is a prestigious title to have and their job is to take the Standard out into battle and plant it, carry it, and claim the keep, so that's where we were going with that type of role.
Josh: You are resonsible for being badass, looking badass, and doing badass things.
Christian: Because you get to carry a cool standard.
Josh: And are a target obviously.
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