|Ah, freedom from downtime. But we're totally independent now (I'm scared mommy!). Anyway, today continuing our daily interviews we've got one with Codemasters Community Liaison Manager Peter Tyson in regards to their upcoming game Dragon Empires.
GameGossip: For our readers who haven't heard of the game, what is Dragon Empires?
Peter Tyson: Dragon Empires is a massively multiplayer online roleplaying game set in a fantasy world imagined for us by Piers Anthony. It features a complex player-driven economy, city ownership and development, clan and player combat and stunning visuals.
GG: How does city ownership work and why is it important?
PT: City ownership is important because for the first time in an MMORPG politics and city development is directly tied to how the economy develops. If you, as a clan, own and run a town you get great status for your effort and if you run it well your town will become popular and the clan will be rich. Clans can add extra buildings and defenses to the 50 cities in our world and doing so changes how efficient production is in that town. So, as you improve your city you will find more and more players wanting to work and make items in your town because of the bonuses they get, thus your town grows and prospers.
GG: What are some of the different things you can do in Dragon Empires besides just fight monsters?
PT: Fighting monsters is always fun so we have lots of that, what's more, the monsters are smart and can migrate, be nocturnal or hate certain races and classes. We also have dungeons for that more intense fighting experience! But once you get tired of that you can complete some of the many quests in the game, some of which will have branching endings and stories. Alternately, you can get involved with the economy by either harvesting and moving resources or turning those resources into items for players to buy. For the truly greedy there is always trading goods between cities, buying low and selling high or simply getting goods to order.
GG: How will you be handling Player vs. Player (PvP) combat?
PT: In Dragon Empires there are three ways you can get involved with PvP conflict. The simplest is to take part in a Blood Circus battle. This is gladiator-style fight with your group versus up to five other groups in a battle with a 'game' like element (kill the leader, capture the flag, etc). These battles should be a lot of fun and we expect people to quickly form dueling ladders for individuals, groups or even entire clans!
Then there are city battles where one clan tries to take over another city. This will be a version of the formal battle system I've just described except it will be on a slightly larger scale. These battles are scheduled to take place at a certain time so both sides can be sure they are going to get a good fight and aren't just fighting boring computer controlled guards.
Finally there is our roles system. In Dragon Empires you can sign on to be a bounty hunter for a period of time and go fight outlaws, players who are raiding your area. Outlaws are hunting for special rare resources and Bounty Hunters must stop them to protect their clan and city status. In addition to this if you're a trader type you can move goods between cities for experience as well as gold with the added risk that you can be attacked by outlaws. The contract traders can also attack and defend themselves from outlaws who may with to try and steal those trade goods!
GG: What do you think sets Dragon Empires apart from the other massively multiplayer online role-playing games on the market?
PT: Our unique world and our strong design vision is unlike anyone else's. Dragon Empires is a fresh look at MMORPGs and presents a lot of great ideas that other people haven't looked at. For example, you can manufacture items whether you are online or offline which removes a lot of tedium from crafting. We're also trying to be as inclusive as possible, the game isn't simply for the hard core or the PvPer. We're trying to create a world which will have a broad appeal and whose strength will be the variety of people enjoying it and the atmosphere this diversity creates.
Check out the official games website for more information.