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Making the Game of Our Dreams, A Chat with Denis Poprykin

Suzie Ford Posted:
Interviews 0

Wild Terra, inspired by Ultima Online and other legendary games, is firmly in its alpha stage of development with big plans for the future. We had the opportunity to chat with Developer and Executive Producer Denis Poprykin to find out much more about this indie open world sandbox title.

MMORPG: Please introduce yourself and tell us a little about Juvty Worlds. How many people are currently working on the project?

Denis Poprykin: Hello, my name is Denis. I am one of the main developers.

We are people that love games and desire to create them. The core of the team consists of gamers with more than 20 years’ experience. Currently we have 10 people on the development team.  We also have no investors or publisher, and currently we can count only on our own resources.

MMORPG: When did development begin on Wild Terra and what is its basic concept?

Denis: We started working on the project in spring 2014. In autumn 2014 we had our first working prototype and in the beginning of 2015, we admitted the first players to the open alpha test. We wanted to create a tremendous medieval world which will be ruled, filled, built, destroyed and regulated by players themselves.

MMORPG: When looking at screenshots and videos of Wild Terra, it is very reminiscent of Ultima Online. Was it an inspiration? Are there any other games that inspired WT?

Denis: Undoubtedly, Ultima Online is a legendary game that left a sign in a vast amount of games. It will be a source of ideas and solutions for a long time in the future of the game industry, and hereafter game developers will draw inspiration from it, including our team. Of note, we didn’t intend to make Wild Terra visually reminiscent of Ultima Online, but we aspired to control mechanics and graphics of more modern games like the Diablo series, for instance. A number of games inspired WT and we should pick out and mention projects that had such features like survival elements, freedom of actions, including the possibility of building wherever a player wants. These games had a significant influence on Wild Terra’s concept and they are: Rust, Haven & Hearth and Minecraft.

MMORPG: What are the core systems that would interest today’s MMO player? Why were these systems included in the game?

Denis: I think that present players lack emotions. Numerous modern MMO-games have dried up! They stopped arousing feelings and became dull clicking games with blinking arrows on a minimap with periodic video cutscenes. What we are doing is creating a game that takes a player’s breath away from the very beginning. In WT you can acquire something, and you can lose it. Such features add anxiety, adrenaline and heat to the process of playing. The joy of victory over your opponent or the joy of successful siege of an enemy’s castle are way more vivid because of the surpassing rivalry of creation and destruction. Moreover, starting as a naked man searching for food, dreaming of his own castle - that’s interesting.

The possibility of building anywhere in the world is probably the reason why we’re compared with Ultima Online. It’s UO where players could build their own small houses and huge castles wherever they wanted, same as it is in our game. Speaking of core features I should also mention uninhibited relationships between players, PvP, item/equipment drop from players. Why we do all this stuff? Exactly for adding heat to the game, to create an enthralling MMO life simulator in a medieval setting in a fully player-driven world.

MMORPG: Is Wild Terra a fantasy or more “realistic” medieval styled game (i.e. is there magic, supernatural beings, varied races, etc.)?

Denis: For now it’s fully realistic. There are no super-powers, magical beings and sorcery. Probably, we’ll add something like that, but for the near future we’ll keep it true to life.

MMORPG: Wild Terra was natively developed in Russian. What are your plans for other languages?

Denis: The game and all the accompanying systems were developed to be multilingual. That’s why we operatively launched an English version of the game, and with help of activists from Poland, it was translated into Polish in almost two days. We’ll be happy to translate WT into other languages if someone desires to help.

MMORPG: Will Wild Terra utilize a single “mega-server” or will there be subscription (premium) and free-to-play servers?

Denis: Currently we’re working on the server code and our servers will be able to accommodate a huge number of new players. We aim to create one big self-expanding world where everyone will find a place for himself: a warrior, a peaceful farmer, a builder, etc. Besides that, we want to give players the ability to create their own servers and worlds with custom settings and rules. Right now the game sells by the system “buy-to-play”. Subscription (“pay-to-play”) is not considered. Perhaps, we’ll switch to “free-to-play” model in future, but now it’s too early for it.

MMORPG: Will modding tools be released and / or will User Generated Content (UGC) be accepted?

Denis: Actually, we didn’t have plans to add tools allowing players to change the game through modification, although we had a few ideas on how to help users make their buildings unique. What about UGC, WT already has some elements of it right now: players can change the in game world through deforestation, desert irrigation, seeding, road building, town/village formation.

MMORPG: You are currently in Early Access with packages ranging from 9-100 dollars, each with a variety of in-game perks. Players are often concerned with “buy to win”. Tell us about your in-game shop and the perks for premium membership.

Denis: We won’t make it “buy-to-win” definitely. We try to maintain the balance as much as we can, especially when it touches PvP. Our team holds to the concept: you can buy something to save your time, you can buy something to make your character unique - so to say, non-combat advantages -, but you can’t buy something to dominate others in fights. Almost everything that we have in the in-game shop can be acquired through gameplay, besides a couple of recipes. Premium subscription increases speed of material gathering, craft and building.

MMORPG: When are you projecting Wild Terra’s release?

Denis: Firstly, we planned to implement all main features in the end of 2015, but it’s more likely that we’ll be able to do this only in the beginning of 2016. Anyway, this won’t be the final release yet, as development will continue: new buildings, places, materials will appear in WT. Even now we release updates every two weeks and our users always have something new to try out. Currently the game supports Windows/Linux/MacOS.

MMORPG: Please add anything else you would like readers to know about Wild Terra.

Denis: We are making the game of our dreams, a game that we as players would want to play for hours. But we also listen to the desires and suggestions of our users. Together with can make an awesome game! Join the Wild Terra community and help us make it better!


Suzie Ford

Suzie is the former Associate Editor and News Manager at MMORPG.com. Follow her on Twitter @MMORPGMom