First and foremost, since this Closed Beta round is
nearing its end, we want to take the opportunity to thank each and every one of
you for playing Arkheim and for sharing your experience! You provided us with tons
of very valuable feedback. The Closed Beta round gave us irreplaceable insights
with which we can build and shape the future of Arkheim. Thank you!
& Future Game Rounds:
The Closed Beta round & your input showed us, that we need to address some bigger changes for Arkheim. The biggest change we are planning to implement is the “Ascension” concept, which we will present to you in detail in a moment & for which we hope to get your feedback.
The Ascension will change the game on many core levels. Therefore, we believe a new test round with only balancing improvements and without a major change like the Ascension concept will not provide us with enough insights. Therefore, we would like to finish the work on this new version of Arkheim before presenting it to you again. As soon we are ready, we would love to welcome you once again, to let you test the heck out of it and hear your feedback in a new Beta round!
So, after this round ends, we will pause the Closed Beta
testing to fully concentrate on development until about End of July.
Everybody who was part of this Closed Beta round will
be invited as soon as we are ready. Also, during this time any new players who
are interested can sign up at http://www.arkheim.com/
for a beta-key to get invited to the next test round as well.
Now, let’s dive a bit deeper into what “Ascension” means.
Arkheim puts great emphasis on being a team vs. team
multiplayer game that is fun to play for a broad range of teams. The test round
has shown that in order to achieve this, having the right enemies close by is
crucial so that the game stays interesting and motivating until the end - which
means some restructuring is necessary.
While the details still need some more fleshing out, we already want to introduce the general concept to you and hear your ideas and opinions. Therefore, let’s talk about maps, gates, and ascending!
The Start of the Game
Additionally to the tutorial that is still being worked out, we will make the initial forming of a Realm smoother.
We understand that putting every player into a Realm
as soon as they enter Arkheim made it difficult to form well working teams. Therefore,
players must reach level 5 before they will join a Realm. During this time,
players will learn the basics about their village and PVE progress.
Breaking up the Map
In Arkheim, the location of your Realm on the map made quite a significant difference. Being placed as the “Sandwich” in between two large Realms often meant being crushed from all sides.
We will start with many different start areas where (a
to be defined number) between 8 and 32 Realms are placed. These starting areas
will have a very reduced ruleset to teach the basics of map engagements and
help the Realms to form a well-structured team.
From there, Realms will ascend through several maps with increasingly harder rules as the server ages and they grow, with the strongest Realms fighting for server victory on the last map.
Let’s have a look at how a Realm can reach the next
For each Realm in an area, there will be a pre-defined amount of Gates. While the starting areas will have plenty, each map level will decrease their number.
1. Gates activate at a certain server age, so for example the starting area will activate after week 1, the second level Gates after week 3. They will stay active for the rest of the round.
2. Realms can conquer the Gates from Goblins as soon
as they have reached a certain Realm level.
3. Realms have to spend Orbs to activate the Gate. The number of Orbs to pay will increase gradually with each map level. After conquering a Gate, the Realm will start a timer for activation as soon as it has enough Orbs.
4. After activation, the Gate needs to remain under the Realm’s control for 12 hours. Other Realms can attack the Gate during that time, preventing the Ascension and taking control for themselves.
5. Once the timer ran out and the Gate has been successfully defended, the entire Realm will ascend to the next map level and the Gate is re-occupied by Goblins, ready to be conquered again.
When a Realm ascends, the Ark will be placed on the new map level together with your villages and armies. Fortresses in the lower map level will no longer belong to the Realm and deconstruct. All remaining Orbs will be transformed into a small bonus (i.e. resources).
To make the start in the new area easier, there will be some pre-built Fortresses around the Ark that can be claimed. Fortresses and Outposts will be capped by each map level, however, Outposts will immediately have the level cap of the previous map once you conquered them on a new map.
Example: in the starting area, you can only level an Outpost to level 3. On the second Map, each Outpost you free from the Goblins will immediately start with level 3.
As a result of the Ascension dynamic, you will have new neighbours on each new map who managed to ascend with about the same speed as your Realm did. The first Realms to ascend will be at the centre of the map, while later joiners will be placed increasingly outwards.
We already talked a bit about level caps for Fortresses and Outposts, but there are more things that make every map and the experience on it different. For example, the duration for conquering will decrease while army movement speed will increase on later maps. Additionally, more unique features such as the Moongates will be introduced at specific map levels.
Therefore, the competition will become more intense on
higher tier maps, intensifying risk and reward.
Currently, Ascendance is the one and only win condition.
We decided to test this system to ensure constant success and reward over time
and not only in the last moments of a server. But in this test round we could
clearly see that this approach did not work well. With the Ascension to new map layers we are
now able to change the following:
While Ascendance will only be relevant for your Realm
level (and therefore to reach the highest map layers), we can shift the winning
condition of the server entirely to the Orb ranking.
This means that, in theory, the winner can still
change only hours before the server ends, but also preserves that you need to participate
in fights during the whole server duration to reach the highest map layer.
Each map level will have its individual Orb ranking,
and the higher the map, the higher a Realm will be in the total ranking. That
means Realm number 1 on Map level 2 will still be placed lower than the last
Realm on Map level 3.
In relation to the final ranking we plan to give out
some rewards, for example Sapphires for the next round you play, so even if you
didn’t succeed to reach the last map layer you have something to fight for.
Because of the new Ascension goal, we think the weekly moon phase rankings are not fitting anymore. So those can be changed to a daily ranking for a small bonus or might even be removed completely. We’re currently not sure about a final solution on this yet, so any feedback & ideas regarding this are highly appreciated!
What do you think?
With these changes, we want to give players the ability to compete at their own level and pace, while still having an exciting experience until the end.
Now it is time for your questions, concerns, ideas and opinions! Let’s discuss what you think, so we can refine the game and make Arkheim better!