ArcheAge Interview - Pirates, Patch 1.7, Mouselook, APEX, and More
I got the amazing chance to shoot some questions over to Victoria Voss, Lead Producer, ArcheAge / Trion Worlds about ArcheAge, ranging from some serious gameplay issues that a few players have (the ability to invert a mouse) to some more bigger questions like when will we get to see the really cool 1.7 content. If you're a fan at all of ArcheAge, then this is definitely something you'll want to shoot your eyes to.
TenTonHammer: ArcheAge will be launching at patch 1.2 of the Korean ArcheAge client, which is currently up to patch 1.7 (ship customization, skateboards, Leviathan, etc.). Do you have a post-launch release schedule for when the NA market will see the KR patches and will see it a 1:1 patch update or incremental feature additions?
Trion: XLGAMES and Trion Worlds are currently focused on getting ArcheAge out to you all, and we both want to bring 1.7 to the West as soon as possible. The new features in 1.7 are all pretty cool and we are excited about bringing them to the West.
Our localization teams are currently busy testing out all of the 2 million words for launch. Once we’re ready for launch, we’ll start working on the 1.7 localization and planning for launching the new update. We’re currently planning to release it as a singular update as soon as we can after launch. The goal is to make sure to keep pace in the west, and deliver on the AAA MMO experience no matter which locale you’re playing in.
What exactly is involved in the Westernization of ArcheAge? To be more nuanced, what specific changes are there between the East and the West version of the game that’s relevant to the players.
There are a lot of different parts to Westernizing a game. The most obvious part is localizing the game from Korean into English, French and German. Because of the differences in language structure, the text goes from Korean to English, and then from English to French and German. Our region is the first one that’s needed to support multiple languages and continents in the same game installation, which has required a lot of re-engineering inside of the game.
We are also working with XLGAMES to integrate our billing and account systems. This includes the systems that allow you to log into the game with your Glyph account, purchase patron time and credits, and use the in-game store.
The third, and most delicate, part of Westernization is helping the developer to understand what changes are needed to adapt the game to the Western audience. With Trion’s recommendations, XLGAMES has introduced a number of changes specifically for our audience including: xp on story quests; ensuring that there are ways to gain Gilda Stars through international trade; adjusting the labor needed for certain tasks; adding cooldowns and minimum levels to labor potions; increasing the xp gained for doing non-combat activities; and adding additional skin tones to address Western player’s preferences
The wording of the ArcheAge FAQ explains that Patron status is required for housing at launch, is there a possibility of that being revisited in the future and F2P players allowed to own housing at an additional cost or will that just be a forever perk of Patron status?
Land ownership in ArcheAge is in the open world. Because the land is not instanced, we need to balance the available land with the players who want to own land. One important thing to remember is that here in the west, people can make infinite numbers of free accounts, unlike in the game’s home of Korea where new account creation is limited by government-issued ID numbers. In order to keep things fair to real human players here in the west, only Patron players can own land at launch.
We know that some free players also want to own land, so we have introduced APEX, a method for free players to gain Patron status by purchasing APEX with in-game gold from other players. These players can then use APEX to purchase Patron Status. Players can also share land with their friends, family and guild members who are Patrons. Our goal has been to find the best, most fun balance for real human players, in a world of unfortunately increasing amounts of automated/botted fraud in online games.
As we move beyond launch, we’ll continue to monitor this balance and adjust accordingly.
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While understanding that Trion is only a publisher of ArcheAge, can we expect any custom Western content to the game or any unique forks or will it keep to XP adjustments and minor game tuning?
ArcheAge is a great game as it is, which is a lot of why we were excited to sign them up with us. We’ve worked with XLGAMES to make adjustments needed for the Western audience, and strive to keep the feel of the game the same. There’s a delicate balance between changes that are needed for the Western audience and changes that will affect the very nature of the game. That said, yes, we have been discussing additions for the west and will talk about those more in the future. :)
Right now during the beta weekends, players who haven’t bought a pack are playing the free-to-play version of ArcheAge. Will Patron status go on sale during the beta or will players have to wait until launch if they want Patron status without one of the packs?
We are working with XLGAMES to enable APEX (ArcheAge Patron Exchange) during Open Beta so that players who are not Founders have an opportunity to obtain Patron status during Beta. APEX is a new concept for ArcheAge, and we’re very happy to be able to bring it to the West.
Will the packs continue to be for sale post-launch and will there be any modifications to them or will they be exclusive only to those who buy in pre-launch?
We’ll continue to sell Founders packs through the end of Headstart so players will have an opportunity to join the headstart if they would like. The titles, costumes and gliders in the Founders packs will be exclusive to pre-launch purchases.
One of the exciting features of ArcheAge is the piracy system and the ability to become a pirate. Could you clarify the details on the pirate faction and will there be a method to return back to civilization?
Becoming a pirate is a long and difficult road. You will need to kill other players on your own faction or steal from them so much that your faction kicks you out! Once you’re a pirate, every other faction, and most NPCs, are kill-on-sight to you! It’s a dangerous life. There is an island that is specifically for pirates. There you can safely interact with the NPCs, sell your items, and even safely own land. You can still own land in other areas, but your neighbors can kill you if they wish!
If you decide that the life of a pirate is not for you, you can follow a series of quests to prove that you have reformed, and that your original faction should allow you back in. But be warned … it’s a long road to redemption!
Will inverted mouselook be available at launch?
We recognize that inverted mouselook is very important to many of our players. We’ve raised this issue with XLGAMES and they are interested in helping. We know that it’s important to you, and XLGAMES understands the importance also - It’s prominently in their queue of ongoing customizations. Once we have a release date for this feature, we’ll certainly let you know!
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