MMO Coverage


Exclusive Warhammer Online "Call to Arms" Interview - The Slayer and the Choppa

Posted Sun, Mar 15, 2009 by Garrett Fuller

Over the last few weeks, gamers have been plowing through Warhammer Online’s live events, eager to unlock the Choppa and the Slayer. With a whole slew of events still planned in the “Call to Arms” live expansion, Ten Ton Hammer sent our resident WAR fantatic, Garrett Fuller, to talk with Executive Producer Jeff Hickman. These two mythic (harhar!) personalities discuss the introduction of the Choppa and Slayer and what players can expect next out of the Mythic Entertainment team!

Ten Ton Hammer: What type of trends are you seeing from players who take part in the live events? Are people finishing them too soon?

Players have been scambling to unlock the Slayer and the Choppa.

Jeff Hickman: No, no. I think it is somewhere in the middle of frantic. I want to get the new classes unlocked too. I’m going to work through to get them but I am not going to go crazy about it.

Our indicators show that that almost everybody, about 90%, of our players are on track to complete the Bitter Rivals event to gain early access to the careers. So we are seeing players who have already completed it in quite a large number. If you go in game and you listen to people talking about it in general it’s not like this rabid “I gotta do it!” Everyday is like, “Hey did you finish the event for the day?” You see players discussing it and it is a nice flow.

Ten Ton Hammer:  With these new classes, what is going to happen with this class mix? Players are asking, why should I play a Marauder now, because the Choppa is so good at its job. What is going to happen with these classes?

Jeff Hickman: I guarantee the same thing happens with these classes as does with every other class. We’re going to introduce it, we’re going to get a big rush and then we’ll get a big slow down, and then the core players who really love the Choppa and Slayer will stick with it and the other players will go back to what they were playing.

In answer to the question of what does this mean to the Marauder, or you can apply that to what does this mean to my Witch Hunter? What does it mean to any melee DPS class? Each one of these classes fills really the same role. If you think about it they are all melee DPS classes.

The thing is it’s about personal taste, personal play style. For example, I play a Witch Hunter. I am not going to go play a Slayer, even though the Slayer accomplishes the same goals, like killing individual targets or fighting in close. It is just not the career for me.

Witch Hunter is the career for me. Just like I would not play a White Lion, they play differently and they feel different and reality is that they are all balanced very carefully. While the Choppa or the Slayer may be better in a certain situation, the other melee DPS classes are better in other situations. It just depends upon what you want and what your play style is.

Ten Ton Hammer: I agree, people are definitely stuck to their core choices.

Jeff Hickman: Absolutely.

Ten Ton Hammer: One of the big questions with the melee classes is the knock backs. A friend of mine said that with the melee classes you feel like you’re constantly running back into a fight after getting thrown around. Will the new classes have the tools to keep them in the fight instead of constantly being bounced out of melee and forced to run back in?

Jeff Hickman: Absolutely, I think it is a careful balancing act. If you look at the other melee DPS classes or any careers in the game each one of them have certain tools that can help them in a crowd control situations. When you look at the game, we are constantly tweaking and looking at crowd control.

The word I am looking for is “Immunity Timers.” You know, immunity from crowd control, making sure that if it happens to you once, it isn’t going to happen to you again in the fight that you’re in. We did a lot of tweaking of that in 1.2 and already since I have been playing the last couple of days, I see a massive difference in the amount of knock backs, stuns, which on a certain level is necessary to the game, but certainly not fun to have happen to you all the time. So 1.2 did a lot to address that, but yes the Slayer and Choppa definitely have tools to deal with that kind of stuff. Keep them in the fight!

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