TERA Producer Sam Kim Answers Ten Ton Hammer Readers' Questions
As anticipation builds up for the surprise MMOG that no one knew about
until recently, TERA
builds a larger fanbase daily. We got a chance to speak
with the devs at GDC, but now it's time for the fans to ask
their own questions. We got in touch with En Masse Entertainment
Producer, Sam Kim, to answer your questions.
kitsunegirl asks: Will there be different armor sets in both look and stats?
Sam Kim: Most definitely. Aesthetics are an important part of MMO play that we canÂt ignore. We know that you demand your character look different from every other Human, High Elf, or Baraka exploring the world of TERA. We also recognize that stat assessmentÂfiguring out which gear works best for you and your play styleÂis a key way you demonstrate your skill and knowledge as a player.
A typical battle in TERA
ZeroMerc asks: What kind of death penalty is there?
Sam: Death should sting, but it shouldnÂt maim. It varies by level and by Âfrequency of demise,Â but suffice it to say that the consequences of death include some degradation in your performance (paid off with a brief time away from battle). The biggest death penalty is the obvious one: If you died, you probably didnÂt achieve what you set out to accomplish when you put yourself in harmÂs way.
kitsunegirl asks: Will there be social tools, like walking and sitting animations, cosmetic outfits and the like?
Sam: WeÂre working on a lot of that now. YouÂll have a whole arsenal of emotes and other RP-friendly tools in the game.
revolution77 asks: What sort of advantages does each race have?
Sam: ThatÂs something weÂre still working on, but far and away the most important factor in race choice is the aesthetic one. YouÂre going to be staring at this character for hundreds of hours, so weÂre giving you a wide array of options at character creation so you get something you like. We also want to avoid the situation where every member of Class X must be a member of Race Y, or youÂre just 5 percent less effective. ThatÂs no fun.
ZeroMerc asks: Will there be personal or guild housing?
Sam: While weÂre considering all of our options, we arenÂt ready to discuss details yet. Stay tuned.
revolution77 asks: Since the IP is original, how much of the lore is worked out? Do you have a clear vision of the past? And how far ahead is the story planned?
Sam: WeÂve got hundreds of pages of lore, stretching from thousands of years in the past toÂ wellÂ letÂs just say Âsome timeÂ in the future. Our writers have a wiki of staggering complexity to keep track of our cast of thousands.
Vivid TERA landscape
ZeroMerc asks: Will duels be just one on one, or can you have teams?
Sam: We have full support for both. Around the office, weÂre finding group duels to be a fun way to spend that inevitable Âfive or ten minutes while you wait for everyone to show upÂ time.
renoduv asks: Is there a microtransaction store planned?
Sam: WeÂll talk about details of our revenue model when weÂre closer to launch.
ZeroMerc asks: How many character slots will be available to each account?
Sam: Lots! (Though we arenÂt announcing the number just yet.)
vintrex asks: Zerging in open world PvP is a pretty big issue, as it becomes a tab targeting button mashing fest where it takes no skill. Will TERA have any mechanics to avoid zergs from massing up, or allow small guilds to survive in open world pvp without having to join in the large mess of a battle?
Sam: Well, for starters, kiss tab-targeting goodbye. You have to actually aim in TERA, and thus focus-firing becomes a matter of player communication rather than a target-of-target macro. You can assemble a zerg, but keeping it cohesive is a matter of leadership skill.
One thing weÂre noticing as we play TERA at the office is that small groups employing hit-and-run tactics can rule the day. YouÂre small enough to communicate efficiently and act without delay, unlike that big disorganized group youÂre facing. While thereÂs certainly strength in numbers, that strength isnÂt the sole factor that determines who wins.
ZeroMerc asks: Will "boxing" be possible, where one player controls more than one character?
Sam: With our action-based combat, where everyone is moving around and actively targeting (that means you too, healers!), IÂm having a hard time imagining it. The limiting factor is the playerÂs ability to actually pull it off. Subject to the usual limitations of multiboxing, however, thereÂs no inherent barrier.