During the recent PAX Prime convention, we made it a point to stop in at the Dark Vale booth to check out the latest updates to FORGE, the studio’s first game currently in its alpha stage of development.
For those not in the know, here is how the developers describe FORGE:
A malicious being names The Devourer has swallowed the great pantheon of gods. Seeking escape, the trapped gods have deceived great warriors, zealous adherents and placed them on a faceless world called FORGE, designed sacrifice the weakest of these warriors in order to grow their own power. Choosing one of the five unique warrior classes, the player must battle head-to-head with other players in a bid to free their god from the clutches of The Devourer. Armed with a set of powerful and unique abilities, as well as a powerful and deadly ally, each warrior must overcome the varied challenges of FORGE where every kill is a sacrifice and every sacrifice brings them one step closer to freedom.
In short, FORGE is a PvP-centric game with elements of traditional MMOs.
The game will ship with five classes: Assassin, Pyromancer, Pathfinder, Shaman and Warden. Each comes with a unique set of skills. While at PAX, we had the opportunity to check out two of the five classes in a bit more detail.
The Warden is a defensive specialist that can give buffs both to himself and to his teammates. One of the most impressive skills we saw was Shield Storm, literally a storm swirling around the Warden and pushing off attackers. The GFX of FORGE have undergone a massive transformation in the latest iteration of the game and it shows. Spell and attack effects look terrific!
Additionally, the Warden can turn into a Dire Bear (the class companion), a formidable and powerful iteration of the Warden with its own skillset. Interestingly, when transforming into a companion, a statue of the player character will be left at the spot of the change. When we asked whether or not the statue could be attacked, rendering damage to the player, we were told that, no, it could not be. Frankly, we felt this was a wise decision. *g*
The Shaman character is the healer of the five classes. The Shaman has few offensive skills and is primarily a defensive specialist with heals and buffs for the team. The class is dependent on other classes to keep him or her safe during battle.
As with the Warden, the Shaman can transform into a companion character. For this class, the Revenant is the transformative creature. Again, a statue of the player character is left at the spot where the change takes place.
Co-Dependent Game Play
One of the more interesting tidbits of information we gleaned from our conversation with the dev team is that player characters each have another type that they are most compatible with in order to be most effective during battle. For instance, the Shaman and the Warden work well together and their combined skills form a synergy to make them stronger and more able to deal damage and absorb incoming damage as well.
We asked about what types of characteristics from the MMO genre would be heading into FORGE and were told that there were few. In fact, there are absolutely no PvE features in the game.
Interestingly, there is a game type that teams can engage in where one team is the attacker and the other team takes the part of a raid boss and its minions. We were told that what makes this most compelling is that, unlike traditional raids, there is no scripted AI when players are taking the part of the boss/minions.
In this game play mode, each team tries to take the other down. Once one team succumbs, sides are switched so that each group gets to try out both attacker and attacked.
Getting involved in FORGE is as simple as pre-purchasing the game from the Dark Vale/FORGE website. Right now the full game client can be purchased for a mere $15 or a four-pack for $60. By pre-purchasing FORGE, buyers will get immediate access to the alpha and all future stages of development. In addition, the cost of the game is a one-time purchase. There will be no subscription to FORGE. We were told, however, that there would be an in-game shop that would sell vanity items such as skin packs and other non-combat, non P2W type items.
Find out more about FORGE by heading to the official website.
Have you tried FORGE? What do you think? Let us know in the comments.