MMORPG.com: Beta! So soon! What was the “mark” you guys needed to hit that got you to the beta stage?
Dave Georgeson: This shouldn’t come as that much of a surprise … we’ve been saying we will move into closed beta on or before March 31 for months. However, there were some discrete tool usability and socialization metrics we wanted to hit before we were ready to move forward with a larger test group. We’re there now and ready to start pushing forward into new territory again!
MMORPG.com: What can we look forward feature wise, when beta begins?
Dave Georgeson: Of course, there is a whole roadmap of what is coming to the game on our forums. In fact, we are planning to update this continually as development progresses. It describes when major systems are coming, and what that means for players. You can read all about it here: https://forums.station.sony.
MMORPG.com: What is the biggest driving feedback going into beta, that you’ve received? The positives and negatives that have steered you?
Dave Georgeson: The players are phenomenally talented and driven to help us make this game great. The techniques that they’ve discovered have opened up entirely new ways to use the tools we’ve given them, which makes us extremely optimistic and excited about what they’ll discover as we add more features and abilities into the game. It is absolutely safe to say that the players, and the new techniques they’ve pioneered, have increased the visual fidelity of this game by an order of magnitude. The stuff that’s being created today is light years beyond the detail level we had only six weeks ago. Simply amazing.
MMORPG.com: How goes combat and monsters and all that good stuff? Adding “danger” the world?
Dave Georgeson: All of that is coming during Closed beta. I’ve been in lots of meetings recently about exactly this: how we are rolling risk into the game, how all those beginning stages will be fun for players, and more. We have a really cool idea for how to roll this stuff out – and that is all I can say ;)
MMORPG.com: This was such a quick jump from alpha to beta, do you think the same amount of time will be needed to hit “open beta”?
Dave Georgeson: It’s quick to you, but these six weeks have been months for us here on the dev team. The beauty of having such an experienced, veteran team is that progress is incredibly rapid when our focus is good…and focus has been great. However, in regards to the length of Closed Beta, the answer is no, the amount of time to go from Closed Beta to Open Beta is not necessarily the same at all. We have a lot of really large features to add in during Closed Beta, and we’ll want to iron those out really well before going Open Beta. After all, once you open the flood gates to everyone in Open Beta, you’ve effectively launched your game if you’re free-to-play…so we want to get it right.
MMORPG.com: What are some of the project goals for closed beta?
Dave Georgeson: Well, we are very ambitious. It’s all in the roadmap, really. We will be adding risk and danger, AI, advanced combat, PVP, lots of really interesting things. More importantly, we will be giving these tools to the players so they can create their own stories and scenarios. We can’t wait to see what Landmark will look like when all of these systems are in the game. Landmark is going to be an amazing place.
MMORPG.com: Will Closed Beta see anything about Player Studio?
Dave Georgeson: Absolutely. Look for a lot more on that quite soon!