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Interview: Talking Bloodline: Heroes of Lithas With Goat Games' Co-Founder

Joseph Bradford Posted:
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Bloodline: Heroes of Lithas released onto mobile devices last month, bringing the RPG to mobile fans everywhere. We had the chance to chat with developer Goat Games about the RPG and some of its major features.

MMORPG.com: Can you give a brief description of what exactly Bloodline: Heroes of Lithas is and how it differentiates from other mobile RPGs?

Machine Ma, Co-Founder and Head of Publishing at Goat Games: Our game’s main feature is the ability for players to create various bloodlines. 

This particular mechanic works by allowing the player to marry various champions together, thus synergizing and transmitting different abilities and traits from generation to generation, creating a legendary story of their own in the process.

At the gameplay level, we’re not a traditional card RPG game. The acquisition and raising of cards and using them in battle, are just an important small gameplay loop in the whole game, while the bigger loop consists of increasing the might of the player as High Guardian and the land they preside over. Players can enhance their character’s might by managing districts, raising children, handling political affairs and having better relationships with their companions, just to name a few. 

Additionally, our game also has a variety of events and challenges, all of which gives the player an immersive experience of managing their own kingdom.

MMORPG.com Bloodline is described as a card-based RPG: how do the card mechanics play into this and can you talk a bit about how combat works? What is the team doing to ensure it’s more than simply tapping a screen but instead remains engaging throughout? 

MM: The combat gameplay involves pitting 5 Champions against 5 enemies, the player can pick which classes and races to put on their roster, of which the player can place different champions to their assigned positions based on the enemy’s strength. 

Apart from this pre-battle arrangement, players can also make a difference in the combat’s outcome by choosing when to launch their Champion’s ultimate skills during the battle. For example, they can block the opponents’ effects by using crowd control; or concentrate fire on a particularly key opponent. This is how we decided to keep the players engaged during the fight.

We chose to keep things simple when it comes to combat because we wanted players to be able to also enjoy other in-game features such as, the Champion marriage system, experimenting with trait combinations, and raising heirs.

MMORPG.com: Can you explain what exactly the Bloodline building mechanic is and how it separates B:HoL from other titles in the mobile space?

MM: We know that there are many games currently on the market that also allows players to develop relationships with in-game partners and subsequently raise their heirs. However, we admit that the combat mechanics in these games can be admittedly dull, and players more often than not can’t test how powerful their champions are. In Bloodline, we came up with a  fresh and new mechanic where, in addition to raising heirs with partners, the player can marry two champions and these couples can produce their own heirs who represent a new generation of heroes.

These heirs can inherit traits from both of their parents. Specifically, players can select one trait from the main champion, which can be replaced by a random trait from the spousal champion. Therefore, by promoting intimacy with partners, the player can obtain more heirs with better traits, and then with generations of marriage and inheritance, players can create the most powerful champions in the game. Additionally, in this mechanic, some champions’ heirs have remarkable changes in their visual appearance. For example, when a female Dragonborn warrior with a Dark Insight aspect (which is an attribute that affects both their appearance and combat style) marries a male Thunder Demi-God Mage with a Thundermark aspect, there is a chance they will bring into the world a hybrid baby that incorporates the dark and the thunder aspects. In the future, we'll continue to add more of those hybrid champions in the game for players to explore.

We believe that Bloodline is different from traditional card games in that all of our champions are useful in a certain way. Any champion can be nurtured to a 15 star mythic level, and any champion could be the pillar of your combat formation. The bloodline mechanism provides more interaction between champions, which lets them become exceptionally powerful after acquiring another clan’s traits. 

All of these encourage players to continuously explore combinations of traits and clans in the game and test them through battles.

MMORPG.com You can choose between different races to customize your character. Are there any gameplay differences between them, and do these traits factor into the Bloodline mechanic?

At present, the High Guardian’s race is left up to the player to choose. These choices are: Humans, Elves and Dwarves of varying genders and skin tones. Currently, choosing a different race will not have any substantial impact on the game’s content.

MMORPG.com: Can you talk a bit about the five clans and their origins, as well as what differentiates them from each other?

MM: Clan Lionstone are a stalwart knightly family in the service of the Kingdom of Novaria. They are renowned for producing the finest of the kingdom’s men-at-arms. Their unbreaking shield walls have turned back the tide of enemies unnumbered, and their reputation for loyalty is no less unbroken.

Their clan sigil is that of a rampant cave lion, a native of their cold northern barony, symbolizing their clan’s fierce resolve and nobility.

With magic utilized in almost every aspect of life for the High Elves of Theralin, the illustrious Academy of Magic in High Theralin is a critical resource to their entire nation. Clan Lúmë, brilliant chronomancers whose mastery of time has allowed them to produce great works for their people, are the brightest stars within the halls of this great school.

Dedicated as they are, it is also known that the Lúmë are not to be bound by tradition, and their daring experiments have resulted in no small amount of criticism from their peers in the academy. Yet their unconventional methods and efforts have undoubtedly advanced the study of magic in ways few others could have imagine.

Lycans, wulfen, wolfmen, werewolves... their names are many; once considered legend or myth by more civilized peoples, the Northmen have always known them as the vicious terrors of Thul's vast icy wastes. It is true that the Lycans live in the cold forests and tundras at the far northern edge of the world, and they are dangerous indeed, but they are no mere monsters. Their nomadic tribes roam the distant north on the migratory paths of the great elk and mammoths, only rarely venturing south into the realms of men.

But much has changed. Their frozen deserts have, in recent years, offered fewer and fewer prey, and the tribes have grown hungry. Some braver clans, like that of Clan Lycanis, have chosen to shift their attention south, at first only to hunt for food, but soon they acquired a taste for other sport. Raiding the villages of the Northfolk for gold, weapons, and whatever else they pleased. In time, they even came into contact with the great nations beyond their northern homeland and found that they too were rich in plunder and in opportunity, a chance to become a nation unto their own.

The mere mention of the Ashlands is enough to bring many folk to hushed voices and whispers. A land far to the south, ruled by demons, the ancient servants of the God of Darkness. While some foolhardy souls will travel there to trade or to entreat the mighty Ash Princes for favors, most are wise enough to leave the blasted and dark lands to their cruel masters.

Yet even in the ports of the Ashlands among the most bravest of sailors and most foolhardy of travellers, there is a name that few dare speak. Doombringer, a mighty clan of warlords and conquerors. When they do, they know it must be followed by praise: "Doombringers, Vanquishers of the Blackflames!", "Doombringers, Tamers of the Hellwrought Dragons!", and "Doombringers, Heralds of Calamity!" To do otherwise is to risk a death more gruesome than even the Scorching Fire's dark mages could conjure. Or so they claim, and no one would dare to give them a reason to prove it.

The Exalted, once angels or demigods by another name, searched the world for a power to replace those that they lost in the Dawn War. They found it in a mysterious vortex of energy they came to call "The Source", a powerful vortex of magic that granted them innate control over the elements. They guarded their new power jealously, believing that no mortal eyes should ever see it. From the raw elements of their power, they created the land of Athema, a nation that would forever guard the Source so that no one but themselves would ever be allowed to take its powers.

Clan Fulgur are electromancers, a rare blessing among their people, empowered by the Source to harness the elements of lightning and thunder. Few other clans in Athema could match their power, but this proved to be a mixed blessing, for while many of the lesser clans bowed to their influence, the most powerful of their rivals banded against them, unwilling to get too close or expose any weakness to a sudden strike. It was no surprise to them that their ancient rivals in Clan Ignis were pulling the strings of the other clans and preventing the Fulgur from gaining more power. But Clan Ignis will not lead Athema forever, and already they've shown weakness as the factions of their homeland have begun to split and seek new leaders. Soon, they believe, a new clan will take power over Athema, and their storm is rising.

The difference of clans is mainly reflected in their race and class. We now have designed 12 races and 5 classes. Different combinations of races and classes mean a new clan.

Take the Human Yank and Lycan Assassin as an example, they belong to different races and different classes. When fighting, the human tank usually stands in the front row, and the werewolf assassin stands in the back row, waiting for an opportunity to take an explosive attack.

MMORPG.com: What future plans and updates does the team have in store, especially for those who find they enjoy the story campaign and want to learn more about the world and the characters?

MM: We promise that we will adhere to our game’s initial direction, which is the merging of different bloodlines. More hybrid characters are in our design schedule.

We also plan on enriching the clan's narratives by improving the clan's background and each character’s story. Each clan will have an exclusive instance dungeon, to help players better understand the family and the game's world view.

We also want to change the characters’ art to 3D forms. Recently, we have been working on improving the characters' overall visual effect by replacing the current 2D painting with amazing 3D models.

A massive multiplayer cross-server feature is also coming. After it's opened, players can register to enter. By cross-server matching, 40 players will enter one map and battle until there’s a final winner.

Additionally, be on the lookout for exciting new clans and their backstories!


lotrlore

Joseph Bradford

Joseph has been writing or podcasting about games in some form since about 2012. Having written for multiple major outlets such as IGN, Playboy, and more, Joseph started writing for MMORPG in 2015. When he's not writing or talking about games, you can typically find him hanging out with his 10-year old or playing Magic: The Gathering with his family. Also, don't get him started on why Balrogs *don't* have wings. You can find him on Twitter @LotrLore