Calling All Angels: An Interview with Angels Online Product Manager Dica Huang

Questions by Karen "Shayalyn" Hertzberg
Answers by Dica Huang, Product Manager of Angels Online

Okay, so you're not an angel in the real world; you can still play one of the Heavenly host in a virtual world. Angels Online, a free-to-play title by IGG, gives you the opportunity to do just that.

While AO's cutesy graphics and angelic theme may not be for everyone, there's more to this game than meets the eye. Players can participate in PvP league skirmishes, craft, develop a pet with unique traits, and own a mount. The game's recent expansion, called Eden, gives players the opportunity to strive for a level cap of 80.

If you're in the market for a F2P game with a little more depth read on to see if Angels Online might be worthy of a download. You can learn more about Angels Online at Ten Ton Hammer's AO portal or visit the official website.

Q: Angels Online has a theme and cute graphics which would likely appeal to a younger audience. Yet it also has PvP league skirmishes, which seem better suited to an older one. What sort of player does Angels Online target?

A: AO’s players are usually either teenagers or adults. We give our players a comfortable playing environment and perfect service. We don’t like to try and group our players into certain age groups and demographics. Instead we try to think of them as a whole gaming community and target that. The different aspects of AO means that we attract players from different age groups for different reasons, so to define or concentrate on a single target age group of players may affect our game’s overall popularity.

Q: Pets seem to be an important element in Angels Online, so much so that pets develop a relationship with their masters called "intimacy." Can you tell us a little more about how intimacy works?

A: Intimacy stands for how close pets are with their masters. Intimacy can be reduced when pets assist their masters in a fight or die protecting their masters. But pets’ maters can increase intimacy by using special items. Certainly, once pets are summoned, intimacy will keep increasing when they spend time with their masters.

Q: Can you explain this pet development process?

A: AO’s pet system is quite distinctive. The same pet will have different growth development when growing with different masters. Whenever pets level up, they will give their masters a quick quiz. Their masters’ answers decide the pets’ development direction. It is the masters’ choices to make their pets become either fierce fighter pets or pets possessing dangerous spells. Even the same two fighter pets will have different attributes if they belong to different masters.

Q: Characters improve their rank in Angels Online by earning "Angel Credit." What can you tell new players about this process?

A: Players can win Angel Credits by completing quests, manufacturing, PvP or killing BOSSes. Angel Credit represents the players’ popularity in the faction they join. That is to say, the more contribution players make, the higher the player’s popularity will be. Players with high popularity can enter high level scenes and accept high level quests or find high level items.

Q: Given that players need to work completing quests, crafting, and/or entering PvP skirmishes to earn Angel Credit, it sounds like being successful in Angels Online may take some work. Is the game still something casual players will enjoy?

A: For casual players, they can still obtain angel credits by manufacturing, fishing or collecting. They can collect items first, and then make items by using materials they have collected.

Q: PvP skirmishes seem to be an important part of game play in Angels Online. What sort of systems does Angels Online have in place to help players find or build leagues so they can compete?

A: AO’s league system helps players find or build leagues. However, games like AO pay much attention to interaction between players. Our game has another system called the Social System to help players interact with each other in a more comfortable, clear way. It should become rather easy for players to find or build leagues with these two systems.

Q: Angels Online allows characters to attain mounts. Do mounts offer any advantages (such as a run speed increase) or are they all about status?

A: Mounts in AO raise the value of some player’s attributes, such as weight, speed, attack or defense while making players look cool. Different mounts will raise different attributes value for players.

Q: For the uninitiated, what is the role of crafters in Angels Online? It seems that it's crucial for a league to have crafters as members.

A: Crafters are important in game. They can forge high level equipment for players. So if a league possesses skillful crafters as its members, it will become formidable. Items forged by crafters will help leagues level up and improve their defense. At the same time, AO offers players a function to reset their skills. 

Q: Angels Online recently launched a new expansion. What is the title of the expansion? What does it add to the game?

A: The new expansion is called Eden, and it has many new features, including the brand new marriage system and brand new copy system to give players more new equipment and pet options. Players can upgrade to level 80 on this map, which is rather attractive to players currently stuck at level 60.

Q: There are a number of Free-to-Play (F2P) MMO games available to gamers. What makes Angels Online stand out in a crowded game market?

A: I believe people asking this question must have a certain understanding of Angels Online. First of all, I think AO lets players match different skills freely. With nearly 40 skills, and many, many spells to choose from, players are free to create their own ideal profession. Apart from that, mounts, Robots, Pets, and various system designs in mini games add much fun to game play. We also have other unique and fun systems:
  • Paper Moppet System: Equipment in AO can wear Paper Moppets to change their style while keeping the attribute stats unchanged. Paper Moppets can be tried on when purchased in the Mall.
  • Stall system: Normally, each player owns 5 stall slots. Slots can be increased with props. Players can buy or sell items with the stall system.
We also will launch some newly released systems in the coming Angels Online expansion:
  • Copy system: Parallel space theory is applied to design our copy system. Players must challenge in party.
  • -Marriage system: Players will wear rings after they get married. The “Ring” has the function of teleporting and summoning. Players who are married can talk to each other on the exclusive marriage channel, while our game system will inform players when their spouses get online.
Q: Thanks for your time. Is there anything else about Angels Online you'd like to share with us?
A: Apart from the prominent features of the game, AO also offers their players the best customer service and many chances to interact with other players and our GMs. Many captivating online events are held every day, and players can interact with the GMs freely. AO offers these and other services 24/7, so players can always feel free to contact us if they have any problems.

About the Author

Karen is H.D.i.C. (Head Druid in Charge) at EQHammer. She likes chocolate chip pancakes, warm hugs, gaming so late that it's early, and rooting things and covering them with bees. Don't read her Ten Ton Hammer column every Tuesday. Or the EQHammer one every Thursday, either.
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