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What's Trion been up to with ArcheAge? Here's an update Q&A with Scott Hartsman!


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#41
Dresler

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Delete this, I had an error in the forum and I posted twice.


                                                                                                                        

 


#42
Branwulf

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Eventually, we will be showing AA on Twitch (probably weekly!) but we aren't quite there yet.

That would be nice, last time we saw the game was the E3 demo.



#43
Dresler

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Eventually, we will be showing AA on Twitch (probably weekly!) but we aren't quite there yet.

 

If it is already clear ... ArcheAge end of 2014 right? Oh god...


                                                                                                                        

 


#44
Lynn

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Eventually, we will be showing AA on Twitch (probably weekly!) but we aren't quite there yet.

 

No problem, there are thousands of AA videos out there.

I don´t wanna watch, i wanna play...



#45
Daemoneyes

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Hey guys,

It's been a while since we've talked some serious ArcheAge!

 

 

that is hilarious

 


We're beginning our lead-up to Alpha and today seemed like a good time to not only talk about where we are now but also give you more insight into what we've been doing these past few months, and a glimpse into the road ahead looks like.

 

 

should have done that in little parts over the last months

 


To do that, I sat down with our CEO, Scott Hartsman, and had a conversation that included a lot of the questions we've been hearing from some of you over the past couple weeks.

 

 

couple of weeks?


 


Hey, Scott. Thanks for being the guinea pig in our first ArcheAge Q&A.

You bet.

 

 

squeal for me!


It’s been a while since we’ve said anything about ArcheAge. What’s the hold up?

I mentioned some of this in my last update on AA a few weeks ago in an MMORPG AMA – A company launching their first MMO is insanely hard. To do it with four different locales lined up behind the initial launch is like doing it on insanely-hard mode, and the job XL has done so far with so many pressures has really been commendable.

While the time between signing and where we are now has also been frustrating for me as a gamer, as a producer I understand that it’s for the best. This is mostly for two reasons:

  • XL can only work on so many things at a time while they strive to constantly improve their live Korean service, and that’s necessitated them working on the partnered launches serially. Working on all the locales at once would have put them in a spot where they couldn’t succeed with any of them.
  • Our locale being where it is in the lineup (after Russia) means that we’ll be benefitting from a lot of what they’ve learned with both their native game as well as the locales in between.
The great news out of Russia this week, about the Russian closed beta beginning this December, does mean that XL will be able to return focus to Trion’s locales, which is very well timed -- It comes right as we’re able to talk a little about their incoming game improvements, which our version will be benefitting from by launching cleanly with them already in place.


yupp, thats the question.

we understand that you cant deliver if xl is not ready to work with you but that still does not excuse the missing community work.

for starters a official forum would be greatly appreciated 

a weekly newsletter or something along this line would also be nice.

 

your competitors have this, so you might want it also if you do want to be known at release

because most people already forgot about this game.


 

You mention XL can only work on so many things at a time – In this type of game, who’s doing what between XL and Trion?

This has been an interesting learning experience for us too – Since with our own games, we control everything from scope, timing, to delivery, and so on. With a partnership like this one, it’s a lot different.

With ArcheAge, XLGames is the developer – Anything related to changing the way the game functions, the content in the game, adding or changing features, integrating with our account system, integrating with our billing system, integrating with our operational system, integrating with our patcher – Anything that you’re familiar with “the dev team” doing, those are things that only they can directly do.

We’re the publishing partner – First and foremost, that means localization (which is actually a lot more than just translation!), it means working with them to determine what the best business model is for our regions and develop plans on that being implemented, it means setting up our alpha, beta, and launch schedules in a way that works with the way they can deliver what’s needed for each, it means the marketing and community work for the game, the technical operations setup, hardware, and networking, the metrics analysis for the game, setting up customer, account, and tech support services for the game, and all of those service elements.

On the vast majority of things that an average customer would care about, which a lot of the time boils down to “How fun is the game?”, those elements are generally planned in partnership, executed on by XL, and have to occur on a schedule that works out for both companies.




 

You also mentioned game improvements?

While we know that we love the visuals, the characters, and a lot of the other unique elements in ArcheAge, the team at XLGames identified a number of places they’d like the game to do better, which they’ve just now begun talking about with their audience. (In my last update, this was what I had mentioned about us needing to let them open the conversation with their own audience first.)

While working on their lineup of locales, they’ve also been working on some sweeping improvements to the gameplay in ArcheAge, due out from them early next year. While we don’t have all of the details to share, we can open the topics they’re hitting up as most important to them. Those include:



 

Fun of Progression: The leveling up experience needs a better feel of growth. That satisfying feeling of getting stronger as you level, while keeping that important tension. It’s a delicate balancing act, and they’re aiming to improve this pretty dramatically.

 

Means greatly increased xp need to level and xp boosts in shop?


 

Fun of Economy: The economic game of ArcheAge is a big part of what attracted a lot of us to this game. XL will be implementing improved balance between crafting, farming, and trade – The goal being to promote a more vibrant economic game, that produces more valuable and more frequently used items, than what the original version launched with.

 

Does this mean loads of unwanted short-time buffs or does it mean we get finally again item decay?

 

Comprehensibility of Rewards / Viability of Paths: In the initial game’s launch, there were many rewards to be found, and many different types of points and other things to earn. How those rewards mapped to different activities didn’t prove out to be as coherent as they had hoped. One side effect of that was that there tended to be a single, most optimal, path, in this vast world of exploration, adventure, pvp, crafting, and economics. We all know what happens when there’s one optimal way to play – It becomes “the only way.” Them addressing this head on will ensure that the full game of ArcheAge is valued in all of its proper splendor.

 

Sounds great

 

Trade Content: Similar to the previous improvement, the act of trading is going to be having its rewardability addressed, and they’re creating new content around it. A great improvement for the economic game.

 

Sounds great

 

Free/Paid Player Benefits: As they’ve adapted their model in Korea, they’ve discovered places where it would be a better experience for everyone if free players had more gameplay that’s additive to other players’ experience, and have found places to add more benefits for paying players as well.

 

So planting is again free of cost or does this imply that f2player will have more access to the game as a whole (housing, scarecrows, etc) ?


 

Class Balance and Progression: And, of course, they’ll be taking their learning from their existing class balance and progression and applying improvements there as well.


certainly hope for it but almost no game gets this right, so my expectations are moderate
 

The gamer in me looks at this and wishes it was all done right now, no different than I imagine most people who are excited about the game would feel.

The producer in me who’s launched MMOs understands that with this kind of change occurring, we’ll end up doing far better for our customers having launched with all of this in place.

Given that, we see our role here as being both our customers’ advocates with XL, and XL’s advocate to our customers – We do what we can to make sure that XL has the headroom they need to do the best job possible, while making sure that as information comes out, we’re able to clearly explain to our customers how and why things are happening the way that they are, as we’re doing right here, and plan on continuing to do going forward.




 

So while all that’s going on with XL, what’s Trion up to?

The whole time through, we’ve been translating and adapting text and stories like crazy. For instance, the originally-written lore and quests have a lot of themes related to obligation, duty, interpersonal harmony, and other concepts that are foremost in minds of the originating culture that, in some cases, don’t translate directly.

While the game is now at the point it’s perfectly understandable to the internal testers (and I’ve put in a few dozen hours playing myself), it’s not yet rewritten to the point where you’d call it fully localized – A core part of that is that it must also be compelling in the destination language and culture.

Most people don’t get that a lot of what we do in localizing to quality is actually taking the core concept the original author is going for, and rewriting entire stories, quests, and so on, given the documents of background lore. That is not easy. But that’s the only way to get to quality. When you play “cheap” feeling imported games, the ones that don’t last – A big part of the reason is they seldom go through that extra effort.

We’re using this extra time to get the parts that we control the highest quality we possibly can.


will we be able to use the english client on german servers? 

no offense but i am sure your translation will sound as wrong and stilted as every other game translation i saw.

 

Where do we go next?

With the recent announcement of the Russian Beta dates, and the Korean Game improvements, we’re now at the stage where we’re locking down stage dates with XLGames for our release. We’ve been working on nailing that down while the rest of this has been going on. Once we have that locked down, we’ll be able to talk about when we expect the first external testing to occur. I know that’s the information that people want the most, and we’re working toward having it as rapidly as possible.

While that’s all happening, we’re also going to continue with the articles we currently have in progress, additional Q&As, new lore releases, and so on -- so we’re always sharing as much information as we possibly can from here on out.




 

That wraps up our first official unofficial chat with the Trion team. I hope this was a good jumping off point for more frequent Q&As like this one. We'll definitely have some more stuff between now and the end of the year for you to sink your teeth into - and I'd love to hear any other questions you have so we can do more interviews like this in the future!

 

 

 

I hope you have more and i hope you plan it now better.

absolute silence -> one post on the forum -> absolute silence -> one post, does not seem to me like how it should be.

 

Anyway i appreciate every word you have for us.



#46
Lynn

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will we be able to use the english client on german servers? 

no offense but i am sure your translation will sound as wrong and stilted as every other game translation i saw.

 

Trion´s not interested in the german community and there won´t be any national servers!



#47
Daemoneyes

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Trion´s not interested in the german community and there won´t be any national servers!

 

Thats unfortunate because germans/austrians are difficult to please but when you play your cards right they are diehard fans.

No national servers, well i like that better than empty servers but i hope there will be a suggested server for us, so that our community wont split across the servers.

 

Does the chat at least support costum channels?



#48
Melancholy

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Hey guys

 

HAI! Nice to hear from you again.

 

 

good time to not only talk about where we are now but also give you more insight into what we've been doing these past few months 

 

Indeed you talked a lot and I enjoyed reading it. Somehow I missed the insight part though.

 

 

The whole time through, we’ve been translating and adapting text and stories like crazy. For instance, the originally-written lore and quests have a lot of themes related to obligation, duty, interpersonal harmony, and other concepts that are foremost in minds of the originating culture that, in some cases, don’t translate directly. 
 
While the game is now at the point it’s perfectly understandable to the internal testers (and I’ve put in a few dozen hours playing myself), it’s not yet rewritten to the point where you’d call it fully localized – A core part of that is that it must also be compelling in the destination language and culture.
 
Most people don’t get that a lot of what we do in localizing to quality is actually taking the core concept the original author is going for, and rewriting entire stories, quests, and so on, given the documents of background lore. That is not easy. But that’s the only way to get to quality. When you play “cheap” feeling imported games, the ones that don’t last – A big part of the reason is they seldom go through that extra effort. 
 
We’re using this extra time to get the parts that we control the highest quality we possibly can.

 

As a person who has been tortured with linguistics, literature, translations and all that kind of stuff a lot at university, I take my hat off to you for the incredible amount of truth in that paragraph!

 

 

I'd love to hear any other questions you have so we can do more interviews like this in the future! 

 

What's the state of German/French localization in particular? Will there be any news or updates in German/French? Will there be German/French community managers? Will there be any 'articles, Q&As, lore releases, and so on' in German? From what I hear and read, the German/French service & support for RIFT has been something between not-so-good and horrible since the F2P conversion. In addition, there have been no official words about ArcheAge in German language since January (please correct me if I'm wrong). So what can German/French people exspect from Trion regarding ArcheAge? Don't get me wrong. We didn't ask for German localization but since you'll be offering it, we would like be taken seriously as the users of that service.
 
Moreover, the most discussed question among the community is related to the payment model in the West. When reading these or other forums, you should know our fears well. I would love to hear some words about that aside from the usual 'accessible, fair, we like teh RIFT model, etc' talk. How about labor potions/cakes, bots, multi-accounting? How are you going to make the game fair and enjoyable in the long run? Should we already start saving money for new exclusive, super awesome and strictly limited bikinis every few weeks?


#49
Nevin

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Eventually, we will be showing AA on Twitch (probably weekly!) but we aren't quite there yet.


Very fast response! Thanks again for communicating with us die hard AA fans. We really appreciate your willingness to talk about a game still in development. I haven't been this excited for more content since Cyan announced their new game from kickstarter: Obduction.

Now I have to ask, any plans or thoughts about turning this collection of fans into AA recruiters for free advertising?

Valve and Motorola are both planning on promoting their BETA products with simply their fans. Valve is inviting 300 people to test and promote Steam Machines for free, alowing hype to grow from simply word of mouth. Motorola is also promoting their recent BETA (Project Ara) with inviting the community to help develop and promote Ara before release.

Giving fans the tools necessary to promote a device/game they enjoy (official forum, newsletter, printable flyers, rewards for quality posts/outside activities, etc) will create more publicity than all offical updates put together. Plus other gamers trust the opinions of fellow gamers more than the companies themselves. If Trion wants AA to become the next generation of MMOs, I highly suggest following this method of transparency by allowing gamers to do what they do best: inform others about their favorite games.

#50
dahanese

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Very fast response! Thanks again for communicating with us die hard AA fans. We really appreciate your willingness to talk about a game still in development. I haven't been this excited for more content since Cyan announced their new game from kickstarter: Obduction.

Now I have to ask, any plans or thoughts about turning this collection of fans into AA recruiters for free advertising?

Valve and Motorola are both planning on promoting their BETA products with simply their fans. Valve is inviting 300 people to test and promote Steam Machines for free, alowing hype to grow from simply word of mouth. Motorola is also promoting their recent BETA (Project Ara) with inviting the community to help develop and promote Ara before release.

Giving fans the tools necessary to promote a device/game they enjoy (official forum, newsletter, printable flyers, rewards for quality posts/outside activities, etc) will create more publicity than all offical updates put together. Plus other gamers trust the opinions of fellow gamers more than the companies themselves. If Trion wants AA to become the next generation of MMOs, I highly suggest following this method of transparency by allowing gamers to do what they do best: inform others about their favorite games.

We're most *definitely* going to be working with you to help spread the gospel of ArcheAge and make sure you have all the tools you need to do just that. I'll likely be fielding requests and feedback as everything rolls out.



#51
Nevin

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No problem, there are thousands of AA videos out there.
I don´t wanna watch, i wanna play...

Not one single AA video has Trion and the developers sitting in the same room together. It's all CBT videos from Korea. Hopefully, Trion will have some updates to share. Like detailing the subscription system, BETA dates, and content updates. But I would still enjoy an "introduction to AA team" stream.

Honestly, I too am growing tired of watching the same old videos. I want something fresh!



#52
Inporylem

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Bewbs



#53
Keller

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Interesting read, I for one am really happy with the philosophy "it's ready when it's ready".



#54
Inporylem

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It's ready when xlgames has time to make it ready. People should jump on the korean bandwagon of hating xlgames if they want to hate something. Trion is only the messengerboy. 



#55
Lynn

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It's ready when xlgames has time to make it ready. People should jump on the korean bandwagon of hating xlgames if they want to hate something. Trion is only the messengerboy. 

 

I love it :D

 

Not one single AA video has Trion and the developers sitting in the same room together. It's all CBT videos from Korea. Hopefully, Trion will have some updates to share. Like detailing the subscription system, BETA dates, and content updates. But I would still enjoy an "introduction to AA team" stream.

Honestly, I too am growing tired of watching the same old videos. I want something fresh!

 

I smell a fanboi round the corner ....

There are thousands of videos taken from the korean and japanese version, so please shut up, Trion fanboi!



#56
Alasondra

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Why are you pretending to be ignorant right now?

Because in my case, it is pretending. You, well it's just a conscious state...

 

You do really good when you post with a purpose, however the whole "Holier Than Thou" attitude is what usually gets people not caring to read anything you write. Why don't you save that for the Rift forums and act like an adult over here and I won't treat you like a child.


"We need to enhance our security..."


#57
Steveleeb

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Alasondra rank 1. I too think kriptini needs to get off his high horse

#58
Nevin

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I smell a fanboi round the corner ....
There are thousands of videos taken from the korean and japanese version, so please shut up, Trion fanboi!

Which don't include Trion, and only a handful of videos are from Jake Song. I personally have only played one Trion game, Rift. And it was better than other MMOs out there. I'm more of an ArcheAge fanatic, been lurking this game since 2010. 3 years is a long time to wait for a BETA announcement.

And about XLgames, it's a handful of talented people developing an international MMO. You expect them to have the same quality of release to a multimillion dollar production company? And if it's about unpopular content, that's why these Trion developer videos are important.

#59
Steveleeb

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I think I might just switch over to the wildstar bandwagon. I can't go this long without an mmo

#60
K3ng0

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Bless might beat them to beta


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