Recently, I had the opportunity to sit down with the developers of Runes of Magic to take a look at some of the changes and additions coming to the game in with their Chapter Two update, due to launch on September 15th.
Up until now, Runes of Magic players have been restricted to human characters. Well, no longer will players be forced into the forms of foul-smelling, lumbering Men. Instead, they will be given the choice to play as an elegant and regal elf.
Fantasy racial stereotypes aside, the developers have worked hard to present not only their new race, but a story and area to match.
Environmentally speaking, the developers have done a great job of creating a new area that fits exactly the expectation for players of the elves. In other words, they're quite Tolkien-esque. The Elven town is built in the trees, with beautiful, naturalistic surroundings. Buildings are joined together via a series of bridges. It should be noted as well that the design of a new starter town has also changed the way that the game's tutorial runs. Previously, players were taken to a whole separate area to learn how to play the game. Now, the tutorial will be more integrated into the early game's quests.
The elves are not alone out in the wilderness. The elves, it turns out, have an ancient enemy that will follow them into Chapter 2: The Naga. An evil race by nature, the Naga were previously imprisoned by Humans and Elves behind a great wall that has now been breached. Hence, Chapter Two's conflict.
So what else does this upcoming update bring to the table?
Chapter Two will raise the game's level cap from 50 to 55 and will also introduce two new classes, The Warden and The Druid.
The Druid class replaces the Priest class on the Human side of things, while the Warden Is actually a unique pet class with each of its possible pets having different abilities.
It will also bring in a new zone, known as The Savage Lands. During the tour, the developers told me that they tried very hard to bring a truly unique look to each of the game's different zones and The Savage Lands are no different, taking on the look of a vast rainforest. I have to admit to being greatly impressed by the overall look of the game. In my opinion it stands heads and shoulders above much of its F2P competition in that area.
New Public Encounter
A new public encounter will make an appearance on Sept 15th as well. Approximately 150 players will be able to jump into the encounter's first stage where they will be forced to work to close red-glowing portals that spawn monsters. Once that task is accomplished, they will move on to stage two which is a boss that will be able to take different forms. Beware, each form is resistant to a different kind of damage. The third part of the encounter will mark the first on-screen appearance of the Demon Lord, and NPC that was referred to in Chapter One, but never before seen.
Chapter Two will also introduce a new PvP game to the mix. It's a "king of the hill" style game where teams of players compete for control points. The team with the most control points, wins.
A couple of new dungeons will be added with Chapter Two, the first is a group dungeon known as The Origin, which will focus on bringing some of the history of the elves to light. The second is a twelve man raid dungeon.