Welcome to part 2! Here you will find more detailed information and dates regarding the Goblinworks MMO based on Paizo’s popular Pathfinder RPG that my assistant Matt and I heard at the GenCon seminar with Lisa Stevens (the CEO of Paizo and COO of Goblinworks), Stephen Cheney (Goblinworks Game Designer), Ryan Scott Dancey (software developer, a salesperson, and a marketer), and Richard Baker (Writer/Developer for Goblinworks).
They are planning to release the “minimal viable product” which means it will be a basic game to start, but that also means shorter development time (theme park MMOs take 5-7 years to develop, but Pathfinder Online will only take 2-3). Initially, the game will open with what they called “early enrollment”. Early enrollment (which will begin the 3rd quarter of 2014) will entail:
- There will be a monthly player cap of about 4,500 players. As the game develops this will fluctuate based on several factors such as number of people wanting to play and how much the game can handle and so on. Those who reached the right level of support during the Kickstarters will have first dibs, of course.
- Human, Elf, and Dwarf races and Fighter, Cleric, Wizard, and Rogue classes will be all that are available to start, but they will add many more options as the game progresses.
- There will be no territorial warfare initially. There will be NPC owned settlements and some indestructible buildings to get the game going.
- There will be a lot of NPC based quests and actions during this phase of development, but the game will stray from that as the players learn the game and take over. Most interactions will be between players to create what the panel called, “meaningful human interaction” in the game play.
- There will be some basic escalations.
After there is enough territory to support more players, (approximately 1st quarter of 2015), the “Open Enrollment” stage will begin. During Open Enrollment, players can expect:
- The monthly player cap is removed.
- The territorial warfare will begin (1st quarter of 2016)
- Players will get to start building buildings of their own, but be warned, other characters can destroy your buildings.
- The escalations get more complex. According to the panel, they have “lots of crazy ideas” for the escalations.
After the players get a good feel for the game, the game moves into the final, and never ending phase, of “Continuous Development”. From here, more races and classes and spells and monsters and new territories so on and so forth will constantly be added to keep the game play fresh.
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