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Space Cowboy Online: Interview with Jason Park of GalaNet

Jason Park took some time to answer questions from our own Martin Ressier about Space Cowboy Online, a micropayment based MMORPG his company created.

MMORPG.com: Let's start with fundamentals. Please introduce yourself.
Jason Park:

My job here is Producer for Space Cowboy Online. Gala-Net, Inc. are the publishers of the game, which is developed in Korea by Masangsoft. I communicate with the design and engineering staff there daily on overseeing the development efforts. Also, I handle the marketing and promotion efforts that Gala-Net does for the game and in my free time I support the customer service/GM team. You can sometimes find me in-game at times answering user questions as well.

MMORPG.com: How many people are working in order to keep Space Cowboy running?
Jason Park:

Including myself, we have approximately 13 employees dedicated to Space Cowboy at Gala-Net, which consists of Quality Assurance, In-game Support, Customer/Billing Support, Web design team, and Server Engineering.

MMORPG.com: If you were asked to describe Space Cowboy with your own words, what would you say?
Jason Park:

In my own words, I’d describe Space Cowboy as… a Free 3D action based MMO Space Shooter. There are 2 factions that players can choose from after attaining level 11 and the faction/nation chosen determines future missions and location as well as community. The game consists of heavy skill based PvP combat where players can show their skills and out-manoeuvre their opponents in dogfights or participate in full scale wars.

MMORPG.com: Controlling a flying vehicle can be very complicated, how complicated will it be for a player to navigate his or her Craft?
Jason Park:

In Space Cowboy, we call the space crafts “Gears”, and they’re very easy to control. The flight controls are based off the mouse movements, while the keyboard is used more often for particular actions such as barrel rolling and adjusting the accelerator speed. Unfortunately, the keys are not configurable, but we’ve received positive feedback from users although it may have been a bit confusing at first.

MMORPG.com: Among other things, we saw some screenshots on your site but most showed planet based movement. Will it be possible to fly into real space and will you have to worry about “realistic” Spacecraft behaviour.
Jason Park:

Most of the maps are land based maps, but there are currently 2 maps out that are in a real space atmosphere (of course they have their dimension limitations like the other maps). In terms of “realistic” spacecraft behaviour, the game physics currently only uses real earth gravity, although a zero gravity map would be pretty interesting, especially during a battle.

MMORPG.com: Since there are several types of ships you can chose, will the game-experience change depending on what ship you pick, or is it mostly to appeal the fashion sense of some players?
Jason Park:

There are 4 different types of “Gears” that the player can choose.

There’s the A-Gear, which acts more as a tank than a spaceship. The A-Gear has the ability to travel on either ground or fly through the air, and has a very powerful stationary siege mode which puts the fear in all other opponents.

Next is the B-Gear, also known as the Bomber. This Gear is very well balanced in terms of speed and regular attack power, but when its Ground Bombing Mode is activated, it can literally destroy anything under it. Some of the more skilled B-Gear players have mastered bombing other Gears flying high up in the air.

The I-Gear is the most popular spacecraft. This is an Air-to-Air combat specialist and relies on speed and evasion in combat. The I-Gear is most often used in the hit-and-run tactic in battle where it can do massive damage to other Gears before they even know what hit them.

Lastly, is the M-Gear. This gear is the support gear and has the capability to heal, and repair other Gears in the middle of battle. Also this gear has the ability to perform very powerful buffs for all party members (called “Formations”). The M-Gear is the likely Formation leader and can even summon other formation members for help from anywhere in the Space Cowboy universe.

All the Gears have different abilities and looks and although players are unable to switch off between the different Gears, they can create up to 3 characters per server giving the player the opportunity to try out the other Gears.

MMORPG.com: Considering some other games on the market, will people who hardly have more than one or two hours a day be able to enjoy the game?
Jason Park:

Yes! This game doesn’t take too much out of you. It’s fairly simple to get thru the lower levels in a very short amount of time. As it is very FPS-like, it’s very easy to jump in, get a few kills, and jump out of the game.

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Martin Ressier