Throne & Liberty addresses ‘static combat and boring growth’ with latest revamps


As western players wait for more localized news from NCsoft and Amazon’s Throne and Liberty, we’re left to sift through the missives to Korean players – and we’ve got a meaty one to read this morning. Korean producer Ahn Jong-ok begins by apologizing for the lack of comms and leaps to how the game’s development has changed following the first big beta test, the results of which “were not at all optimistic.”

“There were some grateful compliments, but it was your reprimands that moved our hearts,” Ahn says. “There were warnings about things I was confident about, and there were also things that made me realize what I was worried about.”

The main problems NCsoft sees is “static combat and boring growth,” the former of which was exacerbated by PvP-oriented collision detection and cast-rooting. With NCsoft’s revamp, moving while attacking will be possible, collision is gone outside of PvP, and movement inertia has been changed to be more responsive rather than realistic. The studio characterizes these as only the first steps for combat improvement; it’s also adding new skills and sped up how soon those skills are granted to players. NCsoft further promises to “make weapon swaps more seamless,” overhaul the entire stat system, boost weapon passives, and improved early gear scaling.

On the “growth” side, the studio says it’s completely removed the auto-hunting and auto-move.

“Along with automatic hunting, automatic movement has also been removed. We considered keeping automatic movement in terms of convenience due to its size, but we decided to boldly remove it because of the value of the experience of moving around the world, meeting people and exploring new areas. From the point of removing automation, the game had to transform into meaningful content play rather than simple repetitive hunting. Of course, it’s not that our game didn’t have those elements, but we needed to add new content types to improve quantitatively, and we also needed to supplement existing content to improve qualitatively.”

The piece just keeps on going; NCsoft talks up its new small-group casual co-op dungeons, explorer-friendly content, and abbreviated leveling curve. In other words, the game folks played in the last beta doesn’t really exist anymore – it’s once again under massive construction after nearly a decade of development.

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