This video interview with Blade & Soul producer James Bae and art director Hyung Tae Kim reveals some of the “behind the scenes” of the spectacular Martial-Arts massively multiplayer online RPG, showcasing the themes and concepts that went into the game, as well as how some of the previously revealed ideas and actions have changed as development continues.
While the two are rather vague with the specifics of the game, viewers can gain a nice bit of background information on the title.
Blade & Soul features a very dynamic combat system, though the specifics of combat are not quite revealed. The interview stresses that even seemingly basic concepts, like moving your target, combo-ing them, or grabbing and throwing them, which are almost commonplace in your standard action title, are something of an untapped field in MMORPGs. Hyung-Tae Kim describes the animation and effects of attacking in typical MMORPGs as “flat, repetitive, and unresponsive”. Blade & Soul‘s combat is much more “integrated” in that the reaction of any action performed is just as important as the action itself. Opponents have specific reactions to actions performed by players, which in turn allows players to follow up with something else, as the situation demands.
What it sounds like is fighting-game elements of combat, which are being integrated into the core game-play of Blade & Soul. Much like how certain attacks have specific effects in a fighting game (launchers, juggles, stuns, heavy-stuns, knock-backs, knock-downs, etc.), Blade & Soul seeks to give every action an effect and purpose in game-play.
Of course, developing these conventions in an MMORPG are challenges Team Bloodlust had to tackle head on, as very few MMORPGs use them.
In addition to the seemingly basic concepts of the game, the Blade & Soul also features many other game-play conventions associated with Asian Martial Arts, like “Qing Gong” (super-jumping) and wall running, which the team is working diligently to perfect. Hyung-Tae Kim boast at one point that the scale of Blade & Soul‘s individual game-play systems are almost as big as an entire game system of other projects.
They also divulge a bit about the specs of the game, though they are again rather vague about the specifics. Blade & Soul looks graphically impressive and demanding, but producer James Bae mentions that the company PC used for the game’s development is some three to four years old, which he uses as a watermark for the game’s graphical demands.
It’ s also nice to know that the development team is still not satisfied with the product, and are working hard to perfect it as much as possible.
After the interview, the video segues into the fantastic G-Star 2009 trailer.
Video uploaded to Youtube by plaync.