Way back in March, Otherland announced a big expansion called Fire Isle, themed around Chinese mythology and launching summer 2018. It didn’t quite make that summer window, but it is on the way now, according to a press release from the team today. Incidentally, Drago appears to now be calling the game Otherland Next.
“Drago Entertainment, developer of the Otherland MMO, introduces Otherland: Next with their big Fire Isle expansion,” Drago says. “Players can expect to have a completely new Otherland experience with 90 new quests, legendary weapons and the new social class available now, as well as an upcoming overhaul of the UI. Thanks to the close collaboration with Tad Williams, author of the much acclaimed Otherland bestseller series, players get an exclusive sneak peak of the first third of his upcoming novella by completing a special quest.” That novella is The Deathless Prince and the Peach Maiden.
The “social class” might be the most interesting thing in the whole update, at least if you’re tired of the stock MMO formula. It kinda sounds like Second Life:
“The new social class works like a secondary game mode, which solely focuses on the social interaction between players, offering a totally different MMO experience apart from the common formula. Players that choose the social class at the start of the game will skip the tutorial and teleport directly to the social hub called Lambda Mall. There they can interact with each other, move around, change their appearances via MetaMorph and create their own player housing in U|Space but not exit the area, fight against monsters or go on quests, except the special Tad Williams Scavenger Hunt quest and the U|Space quest. In case players of the social class decide they want to explore all other adventures of Otherland: Next, they can unlock their character for the normal MMO experience with the help of a NPC in Lambda Mall or create a new character.”
MMO players will recall that the game originally launched in 2016 to poor reception after a beleaguered early access, popping up and down on Steam multiple times and going free-to-play before dying. In 2017, studio Drago and its investors announced they had taken over publishing duties from publisher Gamigo, implying that Gamigo had hamstrung development until then.