Two Worlds Interview Q&A

Two Worlds

If you’ve been following our coverage so far this year, you’ll know that I am super excited about Reality Pump’s upcoming PC and Xbox 360 RPG epic, Two Worlds. Oft-compared to Oblivion, Two Worlds is an open-world fantasy RPG with sights set on providing players complete freedom of choice and unlimited character development beyond anything seen in the RPG genre to date, and from all early indications it appears to be well on track to do just that. Eagerly awaiting the game’s completion and forthcoming debut (currently set for late July), I was recently able to get in some Q&A time with Two Worlds‘ Managing Director, James Seaman to learn more about this ambitious project:

Matt Litten: Ever since Two Worlds was revealed, many comparisons have been made between it and The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. Do you think such comparisons are valid? Was any inspiration drawn from Oblivion (and previous Elder Scrolls games like Morrowind) in the creation of Two Worlds?

James Seaman: It’s hard to make a game in the Fantasy/RPG genre without being inherently compared to Obilvion, but I don’t by any means think it’s a bad thing. Oblivion did a lot for the genre and really brought Action RPG’s into the mainstream especially on the 360. Two Worlds has been in development for over three years now and when Oblivion was released we were thrilled that they had such success. I don’t think there’s anything that we drew from specifically, we really had an idea where we wanted to go with the game from the very beginning.

ML: As an open-world-style RPG, what makes Two Worlds unique compared to other similar games?

JS: The nature of the genre makes it somewhat difficult to make yourself stand out in the crowd, but we’ve implemented a lot of cool features I don’t think many other games have. For starters we’ve included mounted combat which is (from what we’ve seen) something fans really want. The next thing is load times, we have seamless transitions when moving from the open world into towns and into and out of buildings. So rather than walking over to a gate, activating it and seeing a black load screen; the gate opens smoothly and you walk into a bustling community in one shot. Our item and magic systems are also unique in that they introduce stacking. Rather than old/weak items becoming useless, you can stack similar or like items to make them stronger and keep them useful as you go! The same goes for the magic system which is based on magic cards. The more cards you collect, the more spells you’ll have and you can stack same cards to make them more powerful. That’s just a few of the standout features we’ve got.

ML: What is the general narrative background to Two Worlds‘ storyline and how balanced is the game between focused story-based missions and optional side activities and quests?

JS: Basically there was a war hundreds of years ago where the Orcs battled the Humans for control of Antaloor. The Orcs ultimately lost and were driven back into the southern wastelands. Their god was imprisoned in an unmarked and hidden tomb. Now, in the present, a dwarven mining team has discovered a hidden tomb. The rumors start to fly and the Orcs have risen again in hopes of freeing their imprisoned god. Now, your character is a mercenary living his life when his sister is inexplicitly kidnapped and held by powerful forces. You find out that by blood, you are the key to this tomb and from there you are pulled into the strife of this war that is raging in the darkest corners of the world. That’s a basic idea of the history and where you pick up the story, as far as balancing out main quest and side missions, I’d say you could probably work your way through the main storyline in about 40-50 hours, with more like 100-120 hours if you look to complete everything.

ML: From what I’ve read about the game so far, players will be given a lot of freedom to choose their way through the adventure, with player choices determining how the world and story develops thereafter. Could you elaborate on this a little and provide maybe a few examples of how certain choices will alter a player’s path through the game?

JS: Absolutely, every decision that you make in the course of the game has an impact and the world “remembers” everything that happens. For example – let’s say one town doesn’t like another town and they ask you to sneak in at night and open the gates which would allow the orcs to storm in and kill everyone. You can decide whether to defend the city or help bring it down by opening the gate. If you decide to open the gate, the Orcs will rush in and kill everyone, then they will take over the city and it will be Orc owned and operated. You’ll also get reputation throughout the game, so if you’re one of those guys that accepts missions and helps people, others will come to you and ask for your help. On the other hand, if you’re evil and you run around killing people for fun – people will not want to give you missions and you’ll end up a loner which can cut you off from a lot of good opportunities.

ML: How many and what types of races and classes are there to choose from in creating a character, and what options are available for developing and customizing a character over the course of the adventure?

JS: When you play through the single player missions you’ll only have one choice – a male mercenary. When we wrote the story we wanted to create something that was completely immersive for the player. If you walked into a town as some orc or lizard creature and a human princess walked over and said “oh you’re so handsome,” that would totally take the player out of the game because it’s not believable. However, having said that, once you delve into the online multiplayer you’ll be able to choose from any of the many different races in Two Worlds. As far as “classes” go, we don’t have any set path the player must take. You can totally customize your character’s skills and abilities by allocated all key skill points yourself. From your core stats such as vitality and strength all the way to specialized skills like two handed weaponry and lock picking. So essentially you choose exactly what skills your character learns making the ideal skill set for your fighting style.

ML: Up to now, Two Worlds’ multiplayer component has been left somewhat mysterious. Can you shed some light on how the game’s online play will function exactly? Will players team up and go through the same story as the single-player, or will the quests be different?

JS: The multiplayer is completely separate from the single player, so you’ll create a whole new character to take online. Once you’re online you’ll be able to talk and trade with other players and team up to take on specific quests. You can choose whether or not you want to get in a group with other characters or take on the quests solo. Once you do, you’ll have to choose a quest, you’ll be teleported to the area and from there you get the show on the road!

ML: What, if any, differences are there between the online components of the PC and 360 versions? Also, will the online play interconnect between platforms?

JS: One of our biggest goals was to keep players on both systems happy, which is why you’ll see there are no differences between the PC and 360 versions of the game. There are some minor geographical differences in layout, but core gameplay, missions, skills, etc. are exactly the same so that both sides will have an equally enjoyable experience. As for right now we don’t have any plans for PC – 360 crossover play.

ML: In regards to the 360 version specifically, what can we expect as far as achievements are concerned? Are there any early plans for downloadable content to expand the game world after its release?

JS: We’re working in a ton of achievements, from major goals such as completing missions to successful milestones in character development as well as some for impressive gameplay feats. We love the idea of downloadable content, but right now our focus is on completing the game and getting it out to fans. The idea has definitely been tossed around a bit, but I think right now it’s a bit down the road.

ML: I’m sure you aren’t going to give anything away right now, but there have been some rumors and brief retail website spottings of Two Worlds for the PS3. Before signing off I just thought I’d take a crack at seeing if you could confirm or deny the possible development of a PS3 version ;).

JS: Oh no! Look out behind you! [runs away]

ML: What is it? [turns around] Hey, I don’t see anything! [turns back around] Bah… where’d you go!? Well, at least I gave it a shot…

About the Author

Matt Litten is the full-time editor and owner of VGBlogger.com. He is responsible for maintaining the day to day operation of the site, editing all staff content before it is published, and contributing regular news, reviews, previews and other articles. Matt landed his first gig in the video game review business writing for the now-defunct website BonusStage.com. After the sad and untimely close of BonusStage, the former staff went on to found VGBlogger.com. After a short stint as US Site Manager for AceGamez, Matt assumed full ownership over VGBlogger, and to this day he is dedicated to making it one of the top video game blogs in all the blogosphere. Matt is a fair-minded reviewer and lover of games of all platforms and types, big or small, hyped or niche, big-budget or indie. But that doesn't mean he will let poor games slide without a good thrashing when necessary!