[GC 2015] Orcs Must Die! Unchained, Interview with CEO Patrick Hudson
At GamesCom this year we got a chance to exclusively speak with Patrick Hudson, CEO of Robot Entertainment, the team behind the Orcs Must Die! franchise and their newest PVP MOBA Orcs Must Die! Unchained. Originally the franchise focused on a PVE focused gameplay but OMDU has so far really focused on being a five versus five PVP game where players push lanes of minions using powerful heroes in third person combat whilst simultaneously laying down traps to defend their own base. However, for GamesCom the team were showing they haven’t forgotten their roots and were announcing and showcasing their new PVE mode, available to play down on the show floor we also got the chance to play it in a private game and then speak to Patrick afterwards.
The game currently has one core mode in PVP and has three maps available that are in rotation through the beta testing, but new features and heroes are constantly being added; though they’re unlikely to add much in the way of new game modes and instead focus on the maps themselves. With new traps constantly being added and the implementation of more dynamic features with random events triggering in some of their PVE maps the game already goes well out of its way to try and keep the experience fresh and different.
Watch the full interview here:
For our gameplay we were in a team of five in a three lane battle to defend against the minion onslaught, though the mode acts more like a horde mode as the difficulty increases over time, the first wave only having one lane open, but over the course of the different rounds all three ultimately open and more monsters, different types and even bosses will make their way towards your base. As our team was fairly inexperienced it was pretty hard to coordinate sometimes, even with the Devs giving us pointers, once our team of five was split between three open lanes the pressure was definitely on and it felt like the enemy were constantly knocking at the gates of our base.
PVE plays exactly the same as PVP, it has the same heroes, traps and items and even some of the same maps, only you don’t have enemy players to contend with “It takes away a little bit of the intensity and the pressure of having other sets of humans fight against you,” Patrick said “we’ve certainly seen in our own beta that people have come who have played Orcs Must Die! before and they say you know what this isn’t really for me, I don’t want this PVP experience, I’m not a competitive players like this; so we want this PVE experience to be there for them that they can enjoy at a more casual pace.” Though Patrick did confirm there will be unique contented added for both PVE and PVP the likelihood is that the PVP will get more content added to it. Having played both modes we have to say we definitely prefer the PVP aspect, but the PVE mode actually felt considerably more difficult and we actually didn’t manage to defend our base for the full game…
Though we didn’t get to play on the games new Castle Siege PVE mode, we did get a showcase to show a bunch of orcs ambushing a huge castle, putting down ladders to climb over a moat and along a rampart (albeit getting flung off the wall due to spring traps). The game has a lot of dynamic elements where random events can occur such as a ship pulling up unloading a bunch of a new mobs that might appear, Bosses rolling up in different order. As players progress through the Castle new wings open up and the AI will do their best to try and take advantage, though the team are playing around with ways to try and funnel minions into certain areas. One of the cool things we heard was the implementation of customizable Guardians, one such example was a Blacksmith Guardian that would do a pretty good job of beating down the enemy, however, if he is positioned within the Forge area of the castle then he gets a couple of perks and boosts to make him even stronger.
Away from the game another big important change is that the game has switched from being a pay to download MMO on Steam to completely free to play; one of the key reasons being that the original Orcs Must Die! 1 & 2 never had much success in Russia and Asia, so an F2P model offers much more global appeal. The game will focus on offering players five free heroes and players can unlock them through playing or paying, everything available from traps and gear will be attainable through gameplay with the exception of any vanity items such as skins and effects.
The game is still in closed beta in North America and Europe (though players from other regions can play, but the servers are hosted in these area), currently in its final stretch they are hoping to go into open beta and then straight into release early 2016!
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