Recently we sat down with the team at NAT Games, the developers of the Korean based MMORPG Victory Four - V4 for short. We asked them a series of questions about their newest mobile focused MMORPG and how it compares to the competition. Here’s what the team had to say:
MMORPG: Can you explain what unique experiences V4 brings to the table that we haven’t seen in other mobile MMORPGs, such as Black Desert Online?
Nat Games: V4 allows us to introduce western audiences to a MMORPG with a dense story and rich environments that become standalone features of the game. By making the title available on both PC and mobile, it allows us to cater to players who are interested in new gaming experiences. The offense-focused classes help to individualize V4 from standard PC MMORPG experiences and that dedication to physical damage transforms the mobile experience as well. V4 is the only mobile MMORPG that lets players deal critical amounts of damage as a Demon Hunter, explore the vibrant open-world layout of Syllunas and thrive as a merchant in a completely player driven market. V4 pushes the limits of what has been previously thought possible for MMORPGs on mobile by using cutting edge interserver technology which allows for players on both mobile and PC to experience the open world phenomenon.
Auto-play is an interesting component of this game, considering you can basically let the game sit and auto gather/farm all night in order to work on improving your character. What gave you guys the idea to basically allow the game to mostly play itself?
Some individuals enjoy the more laidback aspects of a MMORPG title, so the idea of auto-play was to give an entry point to those who are more excited by the lore and story within Syllunas than the actual battle system and mechanics. Auto-play still lets players experience the battles, a defining feature of the game, as well as the character improvement, but in a way that makes the experience more enjoyable for them.
Are there any benefits to turning off the autoplay feature and simply running the game as any other MMO, aside from the feeling of accomplishment of doing it yourself? Something like increased experience or increased gathering gains?
As of now, there is no explicit benefit other than the gameplay experience. Autoplay adds another level to how players can interact with V4. For those looking for a greater challenge, playing through the game in the more traditional way provides them with that greater sense of accomplishment, especially as they dive further and further into the lore of the game.
Right now, the PC client is an exact port of the mobile app. It’s even got the movement wheel visible, which is redundant since there’s no reason you’d use it on the PC version. Are there any plans to revamp and improve the PC client so it’s more robust than the mobile client?
V4 is a competitive game, so we had to ensure that neither mobile nor PC has an unfair advantage because of the controls. Our intention is to provide PC gamers with the same experience found in mobile gameplay to level out the play field. This is important as the ability to control and use skills across a variety of areas and modes in V4 can determine victory or defeat, especially when facing bosses in PVE and PVP situations as players compete against other guilds.
By listening to player feedback, we did however ensure that none of this takes away from the PC version, but instead makes gameplay less tiring allowing players to really appreciate the storyline and the game’s breathtaking graphics through a larger display.
We haven’t seen the control scheme as a disadvantage to gameplay as V4 in fact has a fairly significant amount of PC players with a majority of them alternating between the mobile and PC versions.
Of course, we will also continue to listen to player feedback to continue to improve the gameplay experience.
Open World PVP is a good idea when it’s an option you can control or at least expect. Why isn’t there any restriction from a level 60+ player one shotting a considerably lower leveled player who’s unexpectedly entered an area where the PVP flag is enabled?
We chose not to restrict the PvP as it keeps the battle mechanics spontaneous while never sending lower level players all the way back to the start. However, we are constantly listening and learning from our players and may make changes down the line.
Following up, will there ever be any options to opt-out of enabling PVP. This would be very welcome, especially at lower levels. There’s nothing fun about trying to continue the main story only to be camped by a pack of level 60+ players alternating farming you for easy PVP kills.
PvP is restricted to certain regions in order to avoid negatively impacting lower-level players. Also, killing other players in PvP isn’t necessarily an advantage. In fact, players can be penalized if they're particularly overly ruthless. This helps ensure that players who participate in PvP do so with an objective in mind.
As a result of implementing measures like these, we have not received negative sentiment from low-level players over PvP. However, if players do report related issues, we will take the appropriate action to ensure new players can join PvP until they are ready.
PVP ultimately devolves into a battle of who has the most potions, as there doesn’t seem to be any sort of skill or counter balance involved. Are there any plans to improve the PVP experience so that every fight isn’t simply won by the person who spent more money on the game?
V4 aims to be a hardcore, grind-based PvP game. As so, players can get stronger through time and effort as opposed to spending more. V4 was designed to recognize the difference in strength that came from such efforts. For example, Alchemy makes you stronger while allowing players to craft better potions for a lower amount than buying them, whereas Blacksmithing skills support completing Item Sets.
Additionally, V4 places an emphasis on strategic combat. Players can immediately avoid facing someone with a huge difference in Combat Power. Strategy can still make it very possible to overcome differences in Combat Power as the game is focused on collective PvP rather than one-on-one battles.
The essence of V4’s PvP is large-scale massive battles amongst guilds. We recommend players to join their friends and try it out!
When will we see the Archer class available on the Global client?
As we just launched V4 in the west, we’re focused on introducing players to V4 as a whole as well as the initial six classes. We hope to add more classes, including Archer, as time progresses.
Are there any plans to improve device optimization and battery usage on mobile phones?
By crafting a mobile experience that rivals that of a PC one, the downside is that it can be a bit hard on mobile devices, especially older phones. Of course as we continue to tweak and optimize the game for mobile players, one of the biggest goals is to streamline it in a way that phones aren’t as negatively affected.
Finally, can Free-to-Play adventurers ever hope to stay on par with players who subscribe monthly or buy the assorted item packs? This game’s structure seems awfully suited to benefit the players who are willing to spend the most money, not the most time playing.
While it may seem the structure of the game favors those who are willing to spend money, the V4 experience is catered to any player who chooses to immerse themselves in the story and action, regardless of in game spending.
While I definitely have some nitpicks with V4, which you can read in my review, ultimately it does seem like they’re interested in listening to what players have to say and actively looking for feedback. For anyone who’s looking for a seamless MMORPG that you can swap between playing on your phone or tablet and PC, give V4 a shot and see how you like it. Has anyone else given V4 a shot yet? Let us know in the comments below!