It seems every time developers release a new game, there are new, drastic methods that attempt to immerse people into its atmosphere than with the last game. All games, whether graphical or textual in nature, require some type of fantasy element to appeal to the players’ sense of adventure.
Some MMORPGs continue making the same mistakes as the games before them. Achaea breaks up these problems by tackling them headfirst. For example, NPCs have the ability to freely roam areas, gossip about random adventurers in the game, or even pick up stray things lying upon the ground.
Achaea begins the immersion process begins right from the start with the trial of rebirth. While the process is the basically same from one adventurer to the next, there are subtle differences regarding things like learning how to use the HONOURS command and what color robes were used.
Putting the Players in Charge
A large portion of Achaea, as with all the games produced by Iron Realms Entertainment, are player driven. For the most part players control the cities, houses (similar to guilds) and clans. Players are in charge of setting up their own family bloodlines. And players can even purchase crafting licenses that allow them to create clothing, accessories, or foods in shops that they own and run.
Crafting is just one of the ways that people can use things from real life as an inspiration to enhance the game. But the process of crafting is more than just buying a license. Let’s take for instance the Achaea version of a McDonald’s Egg McMuffin.
- The probed description reveals – Lightly toasted to an appetising golden brown, a sliced buttermilk biscuit sandwiches the contents of this breakfast treat. A pair of succulent, fried eggs folded into a square hangs over the edge of the bread and is accompanied by a layer of gooey cheddar cheese, its bright yellow hue complementing the egg whites. Completing the delightful creation are thick, crisp slices of smoked bacon that lie stacked between the sticky cheese and upper half of the biscuit.
- When eaten, you see – As you bite into the biscuit, your mouth is rewarded with an explosion of cheddar that melds with the soft texture of eggs and crisp crunch of bacon. With each subsequent mouthful the cheese oozes out, and you lick your fingers clean.
- The ingredients are – 2 pieces of meat, 1 egg, 1 cheese, 1 ball of dough, and 1 pinch of salt. Meat requires you to kill creatures large that their corpses will survive butchering.
- Gathering is needed for the rest - Eggs and milk are only available at farms, which require exploring the wilderness area of the game. Preparing cheese takes three sips of milk (collected in vials at farms) and one pinch of salt. A ball of dough is prepared using 1 handful of grain, 2 sips of water, and 2 small piles of flour. And to obtain a pinch of salt, one must first venture into the ocean and scoop up some pure seawater, then use a tinderbox to refine for salt.
If you are a fan of fast food breakfast sandwiches, then this one might have appealed to your senses. As you can see players have the opportunity to make their patterns very detailed. One thing that the administration tries to encourage (if not enforce) a high quality of spelling and grammar.
This is not just with crafting, but with all aspects of the game including descriptions of denizens, items, and the rooms themselves. When you combine the player-controlled elements with real life-inspired, detailed features like weather, dreams, and constellations, it’s easy for people to get lost in the game.
So what are your favorite features in an MMORPG? What helps you become so immersed that whole afternoons go by in the blink of an eye? I’d love to hear all about it!
About the Author:
Freelance photographer Emily Saunders first discovered Iron Realms MUD games when a friend introduced her to Achaea. Whenever she isn’t looking through life through the lens of a camera or spending time with her large family, you can find her alter-ego hunting, questing, and stockpiling gold and credits for the next series of realm-wide auctions.