Astellia Online demos two gender-unlocked classes: the lady Warrior and Assassin

    
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When Barunson first announced Astellia Online for the west, it came with some big promises, chief among which was the vow to nuke the Korean MMO’s gender-locked class system. While not all of the classes and genders were set to be disentangled by launch, the studio has maintained it will get around to all of them – and then even port the changes back to Korea.

Well, today we’re getting a peek at two more of the gender-unlocked toons: the female Warrior and Assassin class. According to the studio’s presser at Gamescom, both will be available to play when the game launched next month.

“Barunson E&A is excited to showcase the first gameplay footage of the Female Warrior and Assassin. Both classes will offer full support for each gender when Astellia launches on September 27th, with the remaining classes being unlocked in future content releases. Worry not though, characters created on classes that currently remain gender locked, will be awarded a free one time voucher to swap genders as the content becomes available at a later date.”

Source: Press release

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Celestia

Gender locking is antiquated and lazy. Nice to see an imported game working to remedy this ancient relic of a design philosophy.

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jaif13

I get that this is everybody’s favorite cause here, but it really isn’t “lazy”. Animation is a substantial part of the budget for games. Slicing out large chunks of animation that won’t produce much value is smart business, not “lazy”.

I’m not saying that I like it – I would likely play black desert a lot more if I could make the character aesthetics that I want – but I don’t think laziness has any part in this; it’s about the money.

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Bruno Brito

I won’t comment about Astellia. I don’t think BDO had budget issues to be made. It IS laziness because they spared expenses using an extremely archaic class system.

Mewmew
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Mewmew

You’re right it’s not lazy, it’s just them being cheap. They’re trying to squeeze every penny out of the situation so that the CEOs don’t have to go without their millions in bonuses this year.

In the East, gender locking is generally accepted without issue (sadly). When we are getting these games that are made for the Eastern audience primarily and to begin with, yes, they will often have their gender locked system in place. Since their region doesn’t care it just feels like a waste of money for them to work on both there (Though is it really? If they want the game to do well in the West it’s not, it certainly is debatable).

When it comes to porting them to the West, for something not built into the game that actually would be a crazy lot of work to do especially for the types of teams that usually work to port games (they normally don’t do heavy graphics overhauls and additions). Then you’d need to add each and every outfit ever added from the main game to your added gender, it’s too much unless the original developers are going to be doing male and female for all classes. Which again, most from the East don’t feel the need to being that they’re making the game for a region that doesn’t really care about this particular thing.

Anyway, these guys say they’ll be porting the “unlocked genders” back into the original game. So hopefully that means that the original devs will then be doing the work from there on forward with the costumes and such for each gender. At that point they can have their normal porting team here that just works on text, bugs, xp rates, events, etc in the game.

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NeoWolf

Some developers are apparently super slow on the uptake… Gender locking classes is no longer okay.
Can we please lose these antiquated nonsense restrictions and give people the choice to play WHAT they want to play..

K38FishTacos
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K38FishTacos

I agree with your feeling about this, but it is still the norm in Korea and China. Gamers are fine with it there (apparently) and that’s the developers’ main market. I’m not sure about Japanese games these days.

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Daniel Reasor

That’s what I seem to recall reading here, the first time I can recall seeing the topic come up in an article. Korean players supposedly weren’t playing male characters, so Korean developers stopped wasting man-hours on the models and animations.

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NeoWolf

Which would be okay except this pertains to Astellia’s western release. Which means they should be taking note of western sensibilities for its western launch. Bother versions do not have to be the same. ;)

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Castagere Shaikura

Too bad, you can’t pick your own starting Astellia.

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Witches

Character creator is the same as Bless.

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Greaterdivinity

Oh good, warrior was the only other class I was interested in beyond the healer class. Yay for meaningful changes in the localization process to actually make a game more fitting for a western audience!