MMORPG Elsword has been fairly active recently, and the game is fairly story and character-focused to boot, which isn’t something that’s very common in the MMO genre. Siliconera caught up with KOG Games to touch briefly upon a few of these characteristics, and why the game is designed the way it is.
Game lore or story usually isn’t a point of attraction in free-to-play MMOs. However, the characters in Elsword all have their own well-written and thought out stories, such as Add or Elesis. How does the game lore or story of the characters actually affect the game design? Do you design the characters to fit the world of Elsword or design the world to fit the character concept?
The characters themselves represent a very strong element of the Elsword core game design. That’s why when we first initiate a new character concept; we look at it from two sides: first, game impact and then lore. When we design a new character, we don’t look to fit the character directly into core world lore, but focus on developing a character that players can thoroughly enjoy. Then, expand the greater story arc to incorporate each character’s unique design.
Everyone really wants to know the real answer to the question: How long ago did you guys really know that Elesis was Elsword’s sister, and was that the intention right from the start? Also, the community really seems to like the couple of Add and Eve being together, would that ever happen?
It was in the cards that Elesis was to be Elsword’s sister from the initial development phase of Elsword as a game… since the very beginning. As far as Add and Ever are concerned, Add is obsessed with Eve’s Nasod Core, but he has no actual romantic or intimate attraction to Eve. In short, it’s obsession rather than affection. We’d hate to disappoint, but and as far as story goes, there’s no relationship planned. However, we won’t stop the fan-fic writers from drawing their own conclusions.
Elsword recently introduced its first ever raid boss in Eltrion. Was boss raiding as a game feature something highly requested? Why the decision to add raids?
We’ve never actually had an explicit ‘Raid Boss’ request. It’s a concept that we’ve built from the belief that we’re always trying to provide content that achieves our personal goal of having fun together. Simply put, creating an environment that allows players to develop relationships through gameplay. As you may know, there are limitations as to how many players can participate in a standard dungeon run. So, we felt that we needed to add content that expanded beyond the scope of standard dungeon gameplay. The Raid Boss encounter is co-op dungeon content that enables 12 players to play together at one time; the largest number of players in-game at any one time.
Every character also brings something unique to the game in terms of extra mechanics, such as Aisha’s Memorize feature or Rena’s Nature’s Force. Please describe how the process of designing and balancing these features against every other character happens? Especially with additional advancement classes for each character.
This is a great question! With developing the additional combat systems for the characters, it wasn’t our intention to focus so much on balancing a specific job or character, but to introduce a system that captures the intended feel and design of a specific character; all the while retaining the core design of their individual combat method. This adds a simple, yet effective new mechanic while minimizing any actual impact to the PvP or overall combat balance.
Take Aisha, for example; we wanted to design her Memorize System to create the environment that makes her feel more like a high-fantasy epic magician, casting a battery of combat spells that she’s memorized from some ancient tome. This design doesn’t stray from our intended character design, and what contingency of spells to memorize is all up to the player!
What are KOG’s plans for updating other parts of the game in the future and what can players expect to see for the game next?
A few things we have lined up are tons of new PVE content, new character jobs, and we’ll be expanding the storyline and worlds in Elsword.
Are there any updates to the Mounts, Pets or Monster Card Systems in the future? Any extra features to be added?
As far as the actual game systems are concerned, that’s a good question. We do not have any plans to expand the functionality of these existing systems beyond what is currently in-game. However, we will be regularly updating and adding to the list; providing a variety of items for our players to choose from. We have some very exciting new mounts and pets heading this way that players will be very excited about!