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Global Agenda Interviews: Halloween Update Q&A

By William Murphy on October 27, 2010

Though the recent announcement of Hi-Rez’s next game, Tribes Universe, may have Global Agenda fans fearing what’s going to become of their game of choice, there’s plenty going on in Dome City to suggest that Global Agenda isn’t going anywhere. Recently the game saw patch 1.38 released to live servers, and along with oodles of Halloween flare, there are some great additions to the core game itself. On top of bunches of new melee and ranged weapons for players to collect (my personal favorite being the Heavy Wrench), the Sonoran Desert zone itself has seen some increases to the amount of items its NPCs drop allowing for players who prefer that area to do some “farming” of their own on their lower level characters.

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Additionally the inventory for your characters is now shared across your account, which is a welcome change for those players who are sick of mailing things around to their other characters. There’s also a slew of new achievements added to the game, many of which admittedly come from recruiting new players to the game. But hey, with the cost of the title now around $20, I might just have to give some early X-mas gifts myself. Lastly there’s also a new “Challenge Mode” added to the instanced matches in the game. Pre-made groups can really get at each other this way if they don’t have the time or resources for AvA… and guess what? There’s achievements for that too.

To talk a little bit more about the state of the game, I got a chance to ping Global Agenda’s Producer Todd Harris on some specifics and just where the game’s headed from here. If you’re a fan of GA, tune in below to find out what else is coming with 1.38 and to get a sneak peak at the future of the game as a whole.

MMORPG.com:

This patch is no doubt going to be seen as the “Halloween” patch, but looking over the notes there’s a lot more than just some cool spooky stuff in store. Care to go in-depth about the Challenge functionality added with this patch?

Todd Harris:

That's right - Starting this Wednesday Global Agenda players can hop in the seasonal "Oasis Checkpoint... of DOOM" and should have a lot of fun playing that 10-person PvE Defense Raid and trying to collect all 13 different masks.

But for some GA fans the scariest opponents are... other real players! Especially premade teams. That's where the new Challenge feature comes in. The concept is simple - one premade team can Challenge another premade team and choose the map they want to battle on. After both sides agree to the match it launches and we write out detailed mission results in a format that is accessible to external GA fan-sites and stat-gathering sites. In this way the community can manage and run various PvP events and tournaments. In this first version the map-list is rather small but we'll be greatly expanding the map content and functionality as we go forward.

One of the more popular community sites is AgendaStats.com which has over 80,000 registered GA users. AgendaStats is initiating a community Tournament next week and we're excited to see where that goes.

MMORPG.com:

There’s also a slew of new weapons being added to the game, namely of the melee variety. Care to shed some light on a few of them? The “Rusted Machete” sounds very… Danny Trejo. And I mean that in a really good way.

Todd Harris:

Hah! Yeah, I suppose the Rusted Machete gives us a certain 'street-cred'!

There are actually new melee and ranged weapons for each class that now drop within the Sonoran Desert and are themed to match the aesthetic of the more grungy Desert Dweller faction that is out there. So they are intentionally crude and low-tech but they do have their purpose. For example the Brawler's Beat Stick is literally a Stop sign that has been ripped out of the ground. It doesn't do tremendous damage but it has a mean knock-back.

Similarly the elite Commonwealth enemies now also have rare drops of new weapons that are more high-tech. It is always fun to be able to use weapons stolen from your enemy and these rare loot drops let you do just that. Been jealous of the Commonwealth Elite Assassin? Now you can get his Assassin's Blade and strike others with a physical protection debuff. Similarly you can get unique weapon drops off the elite Helot, Techro, and Alchemist.

MMORPG.com:

There are only a few changes in AVA with this patch. It seems like the core of GA is now mostly about the match-made content, and the Open Zones. Are there any plans on the horizon for AvA, or is the player-base speaking more loudly about other thing at the moment?

Todd Harris:

We're actually developing new content across all our existing game-types - including OpenZones, PvE SpecOps, PvE Raids, Mercenary PvP, and AvA. Our primary objective with AvA is simply to increase its accessibility for players who are not in an Agency or are in a very small Agency. Regarding AvA the player-base was asking specifically for additional prestige awards and so this October patch introduces some brand new holographic suits that are available only to AvA season winners. They are really over the top so if you see a player in a holo-suit you pretty much know he, or she, is a bad-ass!

MMORPG.com:

The prestige pets seem to be a big hit with players. I mean, everyone loves little cool flare bits like that. Have you and the rest of the team though about making some purchasable pets or other items of that nature which are purely cosmetic?

Todd Harris:

Yes - the pets have proven to be very popular. Now that the core system is in we can continue to introduce new cosmetic pets that can be acquired in various ways.

MMORPG.com:

Lastly, how has the response been to the new Sonoran Desert Open Zone? There was talk a while back about a more “icy” region making its way onto the servers. Is there anything you can tell us about that?

Todd Harris:

The Sonoran Desert Open Zone was very well received because it was highly themed in terms of story, NPC enemy factions, and playable map content and rewards. Going forward we will continue to deliver new themed content additions for PvE. In the very near-future we will expand on the Recursive Colony faction and there is a long-roadmap of other zones after that, ultimately culminating in the players going back to the heart of Commonwealth Prime city.

At the same time we are investing more than ever toward our competitive PvP community in terms of tools like Challenge. Specifically we will be introducing new Merc PvP maps before the end of the year, and these will be free updates to all players.

William Murphy / Bill is the Managing Editor of MMORPG.com, RTSGuru.com, and lover of all things gaming. He''s been playing and writing about MMOs and geekery since 2002, and you can harass him and his views on Twitter @thebillmurphy.

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