Two Worlds Interview
The market obviously has an appetite for huge, open-ended action/RPGs and the next title to offer this style of gameplay will be Reality Pump's Two Worlds, due in April. Based in Poland, Reality Pump is a seasoned developer that just may have the experience to succeed with a game of this scope. The PR for this title has made some ambitious claims, so we sent along some questions to explore the project. Here's the first part of our interview.
Miroslaw Dymek: My name is Miroslaw Dymek, Technical Director of Reality Pump. We are an established game developer, best known for award winning Earth 21x0 RTS games. Our team has released quality games for more than 10 years. My job as technical director is supervising the development and designing the games.
RPGWatch: Let’s start with a summary of Two Worlds and the gameplay it will offer. What are the key features that will differentiate Two Worlds?
Miroslaw Dymek: Two Worlds is a realtime RPG vastly rich in variety. You take the role of a bold adventurer who gets into the thick of the power struggle between long-forgotten gods, exploring a huge world, surviving countless battles and constantly striving to gain power through clever tactics. Only power will allow you to decide the future of the world.
Two Worlds combines a dynamic and sophisticated battle system with an enormous action theater and an astounding degree of 'freedom of decision'. This gives you, the player, a wonderfully novel and absolutely top-class RPG experience - and that was our project objective from the start. The game even enables you to design its unbelievably huge and detailed world to your own specifications.
Miroslaw Dymek: The idea of making an RPG was with us for several years, but there was always no time and possibility. When it turned out to be plausible, we just knew what we wanted and how much it would take. I should say we were excited and happy, and you know, all that stuff, but, well, it was so natural that we finally make an RPG that we simply started preproduction. It had to happen sooner or later; too many RPG fans are the core members of the team. We came to this conclusion during the very early works on “KnighShift 2” and decided this was the better way to go.
RPGWatch: What can you reveal about the story and setting?
Miroslaw Dymek: Two Worlds tells the story of a divided continent. The Orcs wage war against other sapient races, driven by the inborn desire of supremacy. That desire is a gift from their god, Aziraal, who was slain and buried in an unknown place long ago. But Orcs, Dwarves, Humans and Elves are not the only inhabitants of the world. Side by side live strange and ominous creatures whose origins reach times before the gods. Some people say that they are the creations of the old gods who abandoned the planet, others maintain that it was some kind of unknown magical energy that brought them to live, but nobody really understand their nature and purpose. They are the Second World, something beyond understanding.
Usually loathed and feared, the Second Worlds is an object of fascination for certain groups and factions. In the course of the game, there will be more than few possibilities to discover mysteries that will unveil the true nature of the Second World.
Miroslaw Dymek: Two Worlds features a vast terrain (about 30 square kilometres) open for free exploration. Several big cities, numerous villages, settlements, ruins, keeps and fortresses are scattered over thematically varying areas. You will visit high, snow-covered mountains in the north, dwarven foothills, green plains, rocky mountains in the south, desolated lands in the east and a big part of the desert. Architecture changes from area to area, and so do your opponents. Moreover, there are about 50 Dungeons.
RPGWatch: Players will take on the role of an experienced warrior with a known history and background. Why did you decide to take this route rather than allow players to envisage their own character in entirety?
Miroslaw Dymek: The hero of Two Worlds also starts as a first level character. There was no point in messing with accepted and proven mechanics. What really had to be introduced was the feeling of being somebody worthy of all those adventures ahead. A seasoned warrior who knows his trade deserves demanding missions, or his potential is spoiled. We try to keep the adventure more mature and serious, steering away from hack’n’slash approach, where any creature and mission is good as long as it yields experience points. It is simply more rewarding for a player to be involved in serious conflicts and events and do something meaningful.
Miroslaw Dymek: For us, the impact on the world’s condition means that with every important decision in the game, something global happens. With properly invented quests it is really not so hard to achieve. Your character has his own goal to pursue, but he also encounters many conflicting factions on his way. The player decides whom he will support and when. The sides of the conflict have their own goals and ways of conduct but they need some kind of “trigger”. What you can do is to deliver them that “trigger” and then stand on either side to resolve the conflict and watch what will come out of this.
The results of your actions are observed almost immediately and the consequences are logical.
There is quite a lot interaction with NPC, mainly through dialogs, but also some situations will force you to make a decision within a certain (small) amount of time. Taking no action is also a decision, like in the situation where one of your employers is being hanged. Will you attack the guards and save him, kill him with your own hands or just observe the executioner doing his job? Whatever you choose, the decision will resound with serious consequences later in the game.
This way of resolving quests also teaches responsibility for your decisions. It may be really painful if you mess with an important faction, like in the situation when all the magic spells and potions are now only available through the black market, not to mention all those unavailable quests and wasted experience points. If, by the contrary you cooperate, the factions or guilds will treat you with respect and reverence worth any effort.
RPGWatch: Do the NPCs react to the player’s actions? What about NPC schedules or AI to make them seem more realistic?
Miroslaw Dymek: Instead of individually scripted behaviours, every NPC is managed with the same, global AI module. They go about their business, protect themselves and their property, sleep and work, go aggressive or flee in panic. They react as normal people with the variety known from real life. Some of NPCs have specific tasks and they do everything to accomplish them, some of them simply do not like you, some want to help. They are governed by simple rules but those rules combine with each other and sometimes generate unpredictable challenges and situations. Eventually, you can predict the results of your actions with a sensible doze of accuracy, but never feel the stiffness of totally scripted games.
We'd like to thank Miroslaw for the answers so far and watch out for Part Two, which will cover combat, character development, magic and more.
Information aboutTwo Worlds
Developer: Reality Pump
SP/MP: Single + MP
Play-time: 40-60 hours
Regions & platforms
· Platform: Xbox 360
· Released at 2007-08-24
· Publisher: ZUXXEZ Entertainment
· Platform: Xbox 360
· Released at 2007-07-24
· Publisher: Southpeak Interactive