Adventure Pack 3, The Fallen Dynasty, launches next week
Matt Higby, the Design Supervisor for The Fallen Dynasty adventure pack, talks to our own Carolyn Koh about the soon to launch miniature add-on to SOE's EverQuest II.
|MMORPG.com:||How are you working the EQ2 lore and the Adventure Packs? Do you have a dedicated writer or a framework laid out to ensure some continuity?|
Usually the first step for us in developing any adventure or expansion pack is to get all of the designers who will be working on lore; quests, dialog and character history into a meeting room and define exactly what we want to do with that particular plot line. For the AP it was no different, we always start out with a basic idea of what story we want to tell, and then we refine it and figure out all the intricacies and details down to the quests and character level.
Our primary goal though, is coming up with a story that can be self-contained, tells something that affects the rest of the game, and fits in with existing lore. For The Fallen Dynasty we knew we wanted to tell a story that would bridge the gap between EverQuest II Live and our upcoming expansion pack, Echoes of Faydwer. The events that unfold in TFD will become increasingly important in the months leading up to Echoes.
|MMORPG.com:||What prompted the decision of not having any new Asian influenced armor enter the game world with this Adventure Pack but only weapons?|
Creating a new armor set is an extremely time consuming process. Each suit of armor requires that we create new geometry for every player character race and gender for both SOGA and SOE character models. Weapons made the most sense to be able to accomplish in a specific amount of time and to exemplify the Asian theme within the larger picture of EQII. We were able to make nearly 30 new weapon models or one new suit of armor; the choice was clear.
|MMORPG.com:||What are these new Artisan Rewards and how will they help crafters?|
Players will be able to quest for items that will directly increase their class crafting skills; these rewards will be able to be obtained by artisan level 50+ players regardless of their adventure level in the AP. Once you’ve negotiated a good relationship with each of the artisan families in Shin, you can speak to, and help out the different artisan characters. For example, Spark Augren is a “mad scientist” who wants to create some fireworks to impress the ladies of the village. Once you help him gather some of the components needed for his, explos--er… fireworks, you’re treated to a show, and, assuming Spark survives, he’ll make sure that your effort was well worth it.
|MMORPG.com:||What did you take away from this collaboration with your Taiwanese Studio? Any insights or valuable experience that you’d like to share with us? |
Working with the SOGA group has been really amazing; they’re an extremely hard working and talented group. The biggest difficulty in working with the designers and artists at SOGA was dealing with the 16 hour time difference. If they had questions to ask us, we wouldn’t be able to answer them until a day later. The data and processes behind a game of the scale of EQII are, obviously, extremely complicated, so it was a bit frustrating having that time difference to deal with in addition to the complexity of creating the content to begin with. To help get around this problem we scheduled regular meetings at 7pm our time, which would be 9am in Taiwan, this gave us a chance to at least discuss things over the phone and we'd try to address any foreseeable problems in advance during those meetings
|MMORPG.com:||Equal opportunity Eye-Candy, I say… Why no snake-men?|
We’re pretty sure that Chel’drak, the dragon turtle is a guy, and I think he’s pretty cute.
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