ZAM Tours Snail Games' The Chosen

The Chosen is a PvP-centric MMO inspired by five Chinese dynasties. Paul "LockeColeMA" Cleveland took a tour to find out how players can earn a spot in the game's history.

Many MMORPGs put their players directly in the middle of a giant battle, affecting events that shape the entire world... and the world promptly forgets about them as soon as the next patch is released. Snail Games' new free-to-play offering, The Chosen, decided that the players should be more than just faceless soldiers in a global conflict; they should become part of the story itself. We took a tour to find out just how this is being executed in this PvP-centric game. Read on after the jump!

My tour guide through The Chosen was Blake Midstokke, director of product development and a Game Master in the game itself, and he gave a brief explanation of the setting. The game brings together five Chinese dynasties: Tang, Han, Qing, Ming and Song. These five compete with each other for dominance and to prove they are the greatest dynasty. The dynasties themselves are purely cosmetic, and players level in mirror images of the same world; the separate dynasties only meet in select areas or more commonly for PvP events.

The strongest warrior of the dominant dynasty can attain the title of “The Chosen” and gain a significant role in the actual history of the game itself. To date, only two players have become “The Chosen,” and both were deposed within a week. During the game's month and a half of closed beta, no one actually won the title. The first Chosen, a player named Danalis, had an article written about him, became part of the lore of the game, and received some free merchandise from the company itself. Whoever wins the title also receives a strong armor set, a unique dragon mount and the ability to confer some titles upon friends. So there's obviously a huge incentive to become the Chosen, but how does it happen?

Blake explained that throughout the week there are daily resource wars, where the separate dynasties all converge in the Imperial City to control, steal and defend supply areas for their sides. While the individual skills matter for the outcome, strategy is even more important. Each dynasty can create legions (armies) to organize its members; the legion decides upon a king of the dynasty. The kings can be impeached if things go south or if their side doesn't feel they're doing a good job. If the dynasty wins dominance, the king has a chance to become The Chosen. To do so, the dynasty must win a 4-on-1 battle during the weekend, where the other four dynasties compete against theirs. If they somehow pull it off, the king temporarily becomes the Chosen... but they must defend attacks during the following week and, if the dynasty is unable to defeat the others, the Chosen title is lost by the end of the week.

Obviously this denotes a heavy emphasis on PvP. Blake stated that the majority of content is at the end-game, currently level 151. Snail Games wanted to make sure that players could reach this level and enjoy the fun content, so The Chosen has a few mechanics to speed up the leveling process. The first is pretty standard for many online games: a click-to-move interface. There is also an option to bring up all nearby NPCs and select a name to path directly to them. The Chosen goes even further than other games though, in offering an auto-combat function. The function is fully customizable, allowing players to choose the level of the monsters, what kinds of drops to target, how to heal, etc. Blake said “At first we were a little wary; did we really want this feature?” But the company decided it was a good fit, as it allows players to bend the game to their social life, instead of social life to the game. Players at the maximum level also use the auto-combat feature, as it lets them automatically grind for items and potions and be prepared for the PvP events.

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i was deposed? 0.o
# Sep 15 2011 at 10:45 AM Rating: Decent
"only two players have become “The Chosen,” and both were deposed within a week" as far as i know, i haven't been deposed yet, and i am the second person to get the title .. go MING!
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