Interview With Lars Koschin, CEO of Frogster America on Runes of Magic

This is a great interview that’s not all “commercial”- I hate those interviews that basically have the employee rehashing what we’ve already seen in video previews and on the main website.

I found what he had to say interesting, especially about making Runes of Magic more horizontal than vertical.  He states that figures show 55% of WoW players never see 85% of the content.  It’s usually a straight bolt for high level endgame action for players with more time, and players with less time never get there.  They are striving to make Runes of Magic more meaningful, fun, and accessible to all players of all levels, which has me very curious.

It will take me awhile to process all this to come up with some of my own opinions on making an MMO more “horizontal” but right away I think of the mini-games that have been added to RoM.

Malatina’s Dungeon is one, set up like a solo instance where the mobs are scaled to players level.  All the players will have a challenge, and access to the same special drops.

There’s also the fishing min-game that was talked about in Closed Beta, which WoW has recently been rumored to switch their current fishing system too.

I also recall talking in game to some players about mining and mob paths.  One player complained that mobs were too random and too many.  I and another quickly came down on him.  Okay we didn’t but we did both respond with basically how we loved mob layouts and paths, especially Borrofar(he’s my favorite mob in the entire game for his unique and long walking path and ability to constantly scare the chain leggings off of anyone).  Not only can player skill play a large part in winding your way through mobs to get to some ore, or to a cave, but there’s also paths or main roads, that let you get to any zone regardless of level.  I was mining outside the tunnel that connects Dust Devil Canyon with Ystra Highlands, and this player came flying out of the tunnel on a horse(the way my camera angle was set, while I was mining, made for a very dramatic scene) I thought what the heck is a level 22 doing, just exploring?  I never did find out what that lone ranger was doing but my point is it adds fun for people of any level.  I love making a game out of going for high level mining resources in dangerous areas.

But I digress.  What would you do to make a more “horizontal” MMO?

P.S. For those curious about the opening cinemtic, in the above interview, here’s the video in its entirety.

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