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ArcheAge Column: A Korean Info Burst

By Victor Barreiro Jr. on June 26, 2013

While a drought of information exists on the Western adaptation of ArcheAge, it seems there’s been quite a bit of activity on the Korean side of things.  Jumping off from Bill Murphy’s E3 exposure to ArcheAge, let’s go and and explore some developments, including information on the free-to-play revenue model shift of ArcheAge, an English-speaking gamer’s review of sorts for ArcheAge, and some stirrings of player-created factions for folks who spend their time on the PVP continent of the game.

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ArcheLife in Korea

ArcheAge is shifting its revenue model, and it’s a very convoluted sort of thing they’ve got planned, as far as my understanding of this ArcheAge Source translation of a German ArcheAge community post is concerned.

While I will leave the actual reading of the links above to you, I’ll sum up one cultural difference that adds a wrinkle into the ArcheAge revenue model. The main cultural difference between Korea and western countries is the prevalence of PC gaming cafes, known as PC Bangs, in Korea. People pay PC Bangs to spend their time on a computer there to play games, and part of that money goes directly to the publishers or developers. As such, there are a number of tiers for this.

Free players (presumably those with home computers but don’t wish to pay for perks) can play the leveling game, but are confined to that, as they will not be able to pay upkeep on their homes or purchase housing plots and also cannot do the other activities of the game due to the non-regeneration of labor points for crafting or other things.

There’s also something called ArcheLife, which appears to be what they’re calling the subscriptions account flag for 30 or 90-day subscriptions. Due to the PC Bang model, where gamers in the cafes give money to XLGames by paying to be in the cafe, they get two tiers of service. Non-ArcheLife players are still able to pay upkeep and regenerate labor points for activities that need it, but they earn fewer Lulu Coins (the microtransaction currency, it seems) than those who have an ArcheLife subscription while being in the gaming cafe.

People who play at home with subscriptions have the most benefits, accruing labor points both online and offline, and earning additional microtransaction currency for daily logins and a monthly stipend of coins as well.

From the report, it seems Lulu Coins are also used for crafting stuff in-game, so they serve as microtransaction currency and an alternate resource for crafting future items. I personally don’t think cool, but my sensibilities are different from Korean gamers.

Thank KeksX and Friends

This second portion is going to be a short segment. I just want to give a hearty hello to KeksX and his friends who are playing ArcheAge and feeding the international community with information. For those of you who don’t check ArcheAge Source, KeksX put up a review of the game which serves as more of an info dump, complete with in-game stories and an explanation of just about everything you could think to ask if you were clueless about ArcheAge. You would be best served by checking out his info dump, but I do want to pay special attention to something he’s getting at with his write-up.

ArcheAge is apparently a quest-heavy, alternate activity-filled, team-conducive, “medieval steampunk-fantasy.” Every activity provides experience and growth in the game world of some kind, and so despite the quest-heavy demeanor of play, it seems people with an active imagination or long-term goals can potentially treat ArcheAge as a steampunk EVE Online if they stick to the PVP continent or the pirate-y seas.

Also... you can have My Little Pony-emblazoned ships. HOO-AH!

Player Factions, Nation-States

Remember when I said there was a PVP continent? How would you like to establish your own nation-state on said continent? It seems Korean ArcheAge players will be able to do that as well on July 3 through the addition of player factions in an update.

Fido on the German ArcheAge community forums noted it, and KeksX also put a notice on the ArcheAge Source forums. Basically, people with territory on the PVP continent will be able to create their own factions that should be able to accept members of both NPC factions.

The benefits of having your own faction is that you can create your own nation state and actually engage in diplomacy with the NPC factions as well as other player factions.Build bridges or burn them: as a guild leader, you now have a pretty big choice to make. Also, if you own a house in someone’s nation-state, you kinda have to pay taxes according to their adjusted tax rate. While not a lot of information has been made known since it’s not formally released yet, I’m looking forward to reading the first reports on this particular development to give me a clearer picture on how conflicts will form and relationships will evolve in ArcheAge.

In any event, that’s just about everything that’s been made known regarding ArcheAge at present. I hope we can read up on this soon from English-speaking players, but in the meantime... I’m just going to dream of my Brony Army on the high seas pillaging hapless tractor-riders. HUZZAH!

Victor Barreiro Jr. / Victor Barreiro Jr. maintains The Devil’s Advocate and ArcheAge columns for MMORPG.com. He also writes for news website Rappler as a technology reporter. You can find more of his writings on Games and Geekery and on Twitter at @vbarreirojr.


Read more about ArcheAge:

Victor Barreiro Jr. / Victor Barreiro Jr. maintains the the Landmark/Everquest Next and Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn columns for MMORPG.com. He also writes for news website Rappler as a technology reporter. You can also find him on Twitter at @vbarreirojr.

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