Still fresh off its Steam early access launch last week, Legends of Aria has posted a new dev blog all about the Professions system. “Professions” is probably a bit of an odd choice for what this system is, as many veteran MMO players are going to think it’s like Guild Wars 2’s classes or World of Warcraft’s craft skills. In fact, Professions are sort of like skill tracks with accompanying questlines in Aria, meant to help newbies figure out what to do next to advance.
In the original version of the MMO, Citadel Studios says, new players were “building templates around incomplete skills,” cheesing with overpowered skill combos, and homing in on a handful of overly viable templates. The new Professions system tries to guide players into functional skill plans.
“The overwhelming majority of characters in Legends of Aria (at least since our correction to ability gaming) conform to a skill selection of 4 and 2, 4 of the core skills required for base characters in Legends of Aria such as the Fighter or Mage, followed by 2 additional skills where a player may choose to hybrid towards the Fighter class as Mage or vice versa,” Citadel writes. “Whilst this setup is by no means mandatory and players can choose to build as they wish, it is an overwhelmingly common base for most characters and in a roleplay sense, the requirement for your character to be specialised enough in their chosen role.”
(Ultima Online vets are nodding along here; it’s hard to build a workable mage there without, say, evaluating intelligence and meditation. It can be done, but it’ll be niche and is mainly for true veterans.)
So, what’s next for Professions?
“Ahead of upcoming Point Releases we will be pushing our further development of the Profession system to test center for feedback and testing. We appreciate concerns we’ve heard from players that this was not offered for our last patch ahead of the Steam launch, but rest assured that these changes were in response to addressing ongoing balance concerns and, most importantly, ripping off the bandaid in allowing us to realise our vision for abilities and character building in Legends of Aria. We cannot emphasize enough how important these changes were to give us the freedom to bring you more meaningful choices in playing Legends of Aria. Players can expect Advanced Professions and the inclusion of more General professions hinted at earlier to hit our upcoming test center over the coming weeks. We understand that everyone is busy in game following the latest launch so we will be scheduling specific play times to allow you to get in the game with our designers and give direct feedback and playtesting on upcoming features.”
We checked in with the game’s population earlier this week and streamed the game when it hit Steam last week; you can check that out below: