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The RPG Files: Van Helsing: Staying True to Action-RPG

Interviews By Garrett Fuller on December 16, 2013

MMORPG.com: The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing has seen great success on STEAM, can you tell us what the Complete Pack comes with?

Zoltán Pozsonyi: The Complete Pack includes the base game and everything that has been introduced to the gameplay since the launch of the original. That means all three DLCs (Thaumaturge DLC, Arcane Mechanic DLC, Blue Blood DLC) and tons of new features and improvements. After paying close attention to the requests of the community, this package comes with three unique classes, PVP and co-op multiplayer mode, new netcode, PC controller support, a destructive skill-set for your ghostly companion Lady Katarina, monster respawn system, and the long awaited endgame content with additional scenario levels and the Neverending Story. The game has been released to Mac OS as well and we also released a Free Demo on Steam so you can take a look at the game before you decide if you want to be part of this fun-packed adventure. If you want to know the details about the changes the game has gone through since its release and read more about the newly introduced features of the pack, just head to our DevBog and read our Open Letter to our Fellow Hunters in which we explain everything.

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MMORPG.com: How can players get the Complete Pack?

Zoltán Pozsonyi: It’s available via Steam.


MMORPG.com: The game stays true to the action RPG genre, what are your favorite elements about this type of gameplay?

Zoltán Pozsonyi: Definitely a good level-up system and the loot…and…even more loot, preferably epic items. :) I also appreciate if the loot itself can be customized by the player – in the first Van Helsing game you could only enchant your items or infuse them with essences, unfortunately the forging system didn’t really allow the player to influence the outcome, but the sequel will take a huge step forward in these options. You’ll be able transform items, change their enchantments, disassemble them to fragments and use the pieces to create new artifacts and finally with a forging system that gives you a lot more control over the process. Although it’s not a typical action RPG feature but I really enjoy if a game of this type has a healthy dose of cheeky humor and plenty of easter eggs. During combat I like if I have good control over my resources, use fine tactics saving my most devastating powers for the hard times – that’s where The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing really shines with its Rage and PowerUp system.

MMORPG.com: For lore and story, there is a lot you can do with Van Helsing, what were some of your favorite parts to add into the game?

Zoltán Pozsonyi: The basic idea was a twist on the lore in itself, and it soon became the guideline during the entire development of The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing. It all started with one question: what would happen if Van Helsing, the well-known monster hunter found himself on the monster's side? What could be so terrifying that makes even the old-fashioned monsters tremble? It was fun to play with the traditions of monster-hunting and the character of Van Helsing. Secondly, this Van Helsing is only loosely based on the well-known character from Bram Stoker's Dracula and the setting is an alternative version of 19th century Europe, which leads us to another favorite part of the process: the creation of this alternative reality and our own Van Helsing.

MMORPG.com: Can you talk about the sequel at all? Will it continue where the original has left off?

Zoltán Pozsonyi: I wouldn't want to spoil anything, but there are some details that we can share safely. We begin the adventure almost exactly where we have left off (but you can jump right in even if you haven't played the first part). Borgova has been saved, the big bad enemy has been defeated, but things are far from normal. The city is in chaos, escaped monsters roam the streets and when a former military genius decides to clear up the mess with his army of weird mechanical creatures, Van Helsing must realize that now he is considered as a threat to the city. The question this time was what happens after the hunter saves the day, and our answer is that good deeds sometimes unleash serious complications...


MMORPG.com: The game offers a host of weapons and attacks, how hard was it to balance these out?

Zoltán Pozsonyi: Quite, actually. We established a couple of attack types to serve as baseline values, and used them to set the strength of other skills. But since the effects are so different, sometimes it was difficult to gauge their strength especially when used in a combination. It required a lot of manual tweaking just to reach some semblance of balance for the start of the process. Testing then revealed many values that were still over- or underpowered. For example, the original Icicle Shot had a percentage-based instant-kill PowerUp that proved to be too weak for a single target skill after all. There were quite a lot of changes and several improvements in the balance system and I think that the final result offers players a game that is a lot of fun to play.

MMORPG.com: Can you give us some insight on your plans for Van Helsing in 2014?

Zoltán Pozsonyi: We are planning to release the sequel in Q1 2014 and improve it constantly by adding further multiplayer content to keep our community busy, then we’ll start working on the final part of the trilogy. We’ll also keep working on Van Helsing: Deathtrap, the Van Helsing spin-off project that focuses uniquely on the tower defense mini-game introduced in The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing and turns it into a stand-alone game.

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In this "whenever we feel like it" column, we'll be talking about, reviewing, and previewing all the best and brightest RPGs coming to the market, even if they're not "MMO" in nature.
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