Today I'm going to go in depth on character customization, how dungeons work as well as a few extra tidbits coming out in the near future.
Posted by Lavid on Aug 25th, 2012
So as always first things first, here are a couple new screenshots. I've had a few people alpha testing the game and so far the feedback has been really great!!
On to business.
Next week there will be a big announcement regarding the state of the game as well as the release of the website, you can look for these on Friday or Saturday so stay tuned.
I've utilized a very fun, some might say hard, but rewarding dungeon experience for you in Arakion and I'm going to let you in on it a little (these rules also loosely apply to the outdoor areas as well). In Arakion when you first dive into a dungeon your characters have X number of skills they can use, for a mage this may be 12 spells he can cast. That's it, once those are cast, he's out of spells, he won't be able to regen any mana or health the entire time. At the halfway point in the dungeon, there will be a regeneration shrine which will heal your heroes and put them back at full health and mana.
This means that for shorter dungeons you shouldn't have a major issue, but as the dungeons get longer and longer you'll have to utilize all your strategic thinking and conservation or else you're going to end up a splat on the dungeon wall.
The reasoning for this was simple, I wanted to bring a certain level of "gotta think about this for a second" back to games which I think has really been lost. This means you have to spend some time building your party and figuring out how your group can mesh well together. In games now if you're out of mana or health you can just opt to wait around and once your mana / health bar is full go back to action. In Arakion once you're low you can either forge on into the abyss of the dungeon, making a break for the halfway point or boss, or you can go back to town and regen. Let's say you try to forge on though, what would happen?
Well there are a few scenarios of potential possibilities currently on the drawing board in Arakion.
So what's the upside? Well if you dive into a dungeon and happen to beat it on your first, second, or third try, you're rewarded with bonus materials and potentially rare blueprints. With all of this stuff combined it makes for a much more fun dungeon crawling experience for you to enjoy.
After the last update I received a few questions about exactly how character customization and leveling works. In Arakion instead of having levels and capping at level 60, or what have you, each character's development is based off of four primary things. These things include skills, forged equipment, housing and the history system.
Forged Equipment - as I've said in previous updates and videos, there are no item drops in Arakion. Instead, each character finds materials, then uses the materials to build upon a base weapon, much like the game Dark Cloud. For instance, say we have a mage. The mage starts out with a staff, he upgrades that to a fire staff, simple enough. Then he upgrades his fire staff into a sword, the sword retains the stats and benefits of the fire staff making it a fire sword. This continues throughout the game, compounding on what you have. This means that every decision you make in regards to equipment has a permanent and lasting impact on your character.
Skills - Instead of having 8000 skills in Arakion to fumble through, each character has four highly customizable skills. This means that instead of having a low heal, high heal and group heal, a monk has all three of these combined into one. He starts out with a base low level heal, and then it's up to you to decide what addons you deem appropriate for your group, whether that's group healing, adding buffs, adding shields or what have you. This streamlines the process allowing you to enjoy the game and not hassle with redundant choices.
Housing - This is one that a low of people have been really excited about, rightfully so!! In Arakion you not only build an entire town, but you get hero housing. With housing comes expansion. You'll use your housing to give your hero special training in certain areas. It's up to you if that means increased skill damage, advanced martial training, just some people skills or any number of things. This just adds another level onto an already deep character customization.
History or Trait System - The final piece of character development is icing on the cake. The history system allows you to decide what history your heroes had before they woke up as well as what history they had while playing the game. You'll run into crystals throughout the game which will unlock each of your heroes pasts, through these crystals you'll get visions of what your heroes once were and you'll use them to decide their past before waking up. For instance, if you peer into a crystal and return with the knowledge your hero had the history of the smith, it will reduce the costs of equipment forging for that hero. For their current history, that will be decided based on how you interact with NPCs and the world around you. This means that if you happen to defend and help NPCs you may obtain the history of the protector which increases your hp and how NPCs react to you.