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Cooperatively Killing It

Cassandra Khaw Posted:
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If you've spent any amount of time on MMORPG.com or its sister site RTSGuru, you'll know we kind of love Trion's upcoming MMORTS End of Nations to death.  We really do. While Gamescom 2012 came with a whole host of interesting screenshots and videos, it wasn't the promise of customization that had me excited at the Trion presentation that I attended. No, it was the addition of the 'Full Boar' map.

Now, I like PvP as much as the next person. Actually, I may well like it more than the next person given the fact that the only thing I play in my downtime is DotA 2. However, there are days when you just want to come together with your friends and work co-cooperatively.

'Full Boar' was made for occasions like that. Capable of supporting up to four players, Full Boar will have players duking it out against the Order of Nations (AI Faction) in an attempt to capture five victory points (these are presented by stars on the mini-map). You'll only get an hour to work with so you had better act fast.

In order to succeed at this task, you're going to work together with your friends and devise a way to best make use of resource points. While victory points are directly responsible for granting you, well, victory, resource points will be huge contributing factors. If you have sufficient resource points, you'll be able to do things like create tactical structures so as to be able to defend your units and call in super-weapons.

Why super-weapons? Surely, the units can't be that hard, right? Sure, the map and the difficulty of the challenge might scale according to the player line-up but that can't be so bad.


Nope. You see, aside from the distinctly Arathi Basin 'capture the flag' feel to the game, End of Nations' Full Boar will offer something else that will be familiar to MMORPG veterans: bosses.

Yes, ladies and gentlemen. You will see bosses. At the presentation in the Trion booth at Gamescom, we had the opportunity to see precisely what would happen when the Order of Nations super-units enter the fray.

During the presentation, the players came head-to-head against a Panzer Hulk. A massive tank, the Panzer Hulk was equipped with a variety of skills (including an EMP pulse capable of stunning nearby units) and a ludicrous amount of health. It's one of those things that require a combined effort to destroy.

That's where the super-weapons come in. Ordinary units do very little against things like the Panzer Hulk. However, tactical strikes are more than capable of unleashing massive damage. (If you want to know, it took roughly two and a half tactical nukes to bring the thing down.)

Of course, unlike certain other games, End of Nations won't stop the auxiliary action just because you're facing down a boss. One of the biggest challenges about Full Boar is maintaining a balance. Do you focus-fire on the 'boss' unit in the hopes of taking it down before attending to his minions or do you split your attention between the Panzer Hulk and the victory points?

If you're the sneaky sort, you may even find yourself worrying about whether or not you'll be the one to take down the 'boss'. Much like in any other traditional MMO, these drops can take on a variety of formats. On one hand, you may, to make use of a World of Warcraft term, get a 'green' to fit into a unit. On the other hand, you may get an extremely rare 'purple' to bolster your favorite vehicle.

Either way, I was somewhat pleasantly surprised to see this nod to traditional MMORPGs. Most games within the RTS genre have a tendency to focus on the PvP and while End of Nations will certainly deliver in that department, it looks like the more co-op minded players will have things to enjoy as well.


Cassandra Khaw