Remember five years ago when it seemed like everyone was trying to create the next World of Warcraft? The Blizzard MMO inspired so many different entries into the genre that its hard to remember them all. For many reasons those games haven’t stuck around and the genre itself has become rather stale. That’s why when I had the chance to check out the very early days of development on Atlant Games new project Reign of Guilds it peaked my interest.
Reign of Guilds is attempting to take on the MMO genre with a game that brings us back to the medieval age. It’s been a while since we saw an MMO go for that setting and so far the aesthetic looks pretty impressive. You will start your quest as an unnamed/unknown hero and build your own story rather than have one dictated to you. Although we’re still a ways from the final product Reign of Guilds does seem to have the right building blocks to allow you to capture the world and make it your own.
Part of the appeal for me of Reign of Guilds is its decision to start PVP (player versus player) right from the moment you start your character. This will be interesting to see how they balance this in the game. Often times games that do this struggle with balance and find that players further along in their journey can take over and make things pretty miserable for new players. If the developers are able to gate that PVP to allow new players to grow while still enjoying PVP content early on, this could be a really neat design decision. In order to do this they’re going to be using a Karma system to entice players to be good stewards in the game and grow their own reputation.
Part of what the developers are banking on is their three-tiered progression system. You will have your normal ways of earning experience points either in combat with other players or with the AI. But the third and most interesting way is crafting. The hope is to fully develop out a vast crafting system to give players the freedom and creativity to further enhance their experience. This becomes even more important with the aging system that will have items and things degrade over time never letting a player rest on their laurels.
From what we’ve seen so far Reigns of Guilds is attempting to really shake up the MMO marketplace. Not only are they attempting to have a game be fully accessible right from the start but they want their players to have dramatics impacts in the game world. Players will vote for different changes, modifications, balancing, and new features (within a reasonable range). Each player is given some number of votes based on his or her achievements in the game. We haven’t been able to see how that will work yet but are excited to see if they’re able to pull this off.
As we wait for the full release of Reign of Guilds we can’t help but be cautiously optimistic about where Atlant Games will take it. There’s no doubt that the developers are pushing themselves to create a new take on the MMO but it will be interesting to see how this all comes together. Some of the early innovation looks interesting but we’ll have to wait and see if they’re able to pull this off. For now, we will keep watching the development and look forward to playing the full game somewhere down the road.
I'm the Owner & Editor in Chief of Darkstation.com. After spending seven years as the reviews editor I took over the site in 2010. The rest is history. Now I work with our amazing staff to bring you the best possible video game coverage. Oh and I really like sports games.