Yesterday, devs from Citadel Studios zipped over to Reddit for an AMA all about Legends of Aria, which MMO players will recall just recently hit early access off-Steam. Studio boss Derek “Supreem” Brinkmann and lead game designer Jeffrey “Miphon” Edwards sat for questions from the MMORPG sub. While the AMA continues today, here are some of the notable answers posted yesterday:
- In response for a question on what “finished” characters should do for fun at endgame, Miphon notes that the game is a sandbox, a “starting block” for world engagement, not “packaged content”: “Going forward in content patches we mean to continually keep expanding the horizon; increasing these options with new skills, professions, tools and in game objects which continue to expand options available to players. The big ticket item is obviously new and exciting worlds, but we can’t talk about them yet.”
- The devs say they’re happy with “combat fundamentals” but need to buff its visuals and aesthetics.
- The current focus for the team in general is bug fixing and balance issues. “We want to smooth out the gameplay experience as much as possible before we hit the Steam Store in January. Once we get on the other side of the Steam launch, we will split the team with approximately half of our resources going to live issues and balance and the other half working on new content.” The Steam early access launch is now planned for January.
- Regarding lore and story, the devs say they are “eager” to incorporate more but also want to focus on player tools for storytelling. “We don’t envision town invasions of NPC undead, but a player guild of Undead.” The devs also encourage players to write their own lore books.
- Remember when the game was Shards Online and there were plans to allow shards to link together? Brinkmann says this is still possible but complicated.
- Citadel acknowledges it’s threading the needle when it comes to difficulty balance; it wants to cater both to hardcore players and casuals with a “diverse array of difficulties”: “How do we feel about it right now? For solo players too hard, for groups too easy. That’s what we’re concerning ourselves with first and foremost!”
- Lockpick recipes enter the game next patch. Bard skills, ships and naval content, additions to the “criminal playstyle,” custom housing, farming, dungeon additions, factional overhauls, shield tweaks, Mac/Linux clients, and big fixes for taming are coming in the future. Non-human characters will be possible on unofficial servers via mods.
- In regard to a question on the studio’s plans for cashflow at launch, Miphon told a player it was “None of your business (yet).”
- Wonderering about the interface? “We went with a minimalist UI to reinforce the sandbox nature of the game,” Brinkmann says – and to break players out of thinking this was just another WoW clone.
- Finally, founder packs are definitely not making a return.