The world of MMOs is pretty vast, but the amount of stand out titles can easily be trimmed to a handful. Ever since the massive success of World of Warcraft, MMO game design has stagnated, rarely reaching for anything creative or risky. Complexity is something often portrayed in staggering tables of items or row after row of abilities. Combat is typically a juggling act and events are, more often than not, some of the weakest forms of quest design. Ashes of Creation seeks to offer something different, a world built by its players that’s affected by the choices made on each server.
Intrepid Studios took their project to Kickstarter, offering backers the typical set of good rewards and presented in a lengthy video that covers the vision. I’ve been keeping an eye on Ashes of Creation for a while now, but its early videos and images didn’t jump out to me. After watching the new Kickstarter video though, I’m honestly intrigued, mostly because this MMO seems to combine what we’ve been enjoying in crafting games like Ark: Survival Evolved and Starbound with the MMO fantasy realm of things like Guild Wars 2.
The most interesting aspect about Ashes of Creation is its approach to world building. This fantasy world has been untouched by civilization, making an open canvas for players to paint the world naturally. They do this by performing tasks and building up nodes. Each node has its own set of events that are possible that can then branch to different outcomes, which makes each server feel unique. One example explained is a dragon attacking a neighboring town, giving the players as a group to pack up and look for a new place to live or rally everyone who will draw a sword to fight the massive danger, just to name two out of several options. This could lead to the fantasy world equivalent of EVE Online, especially considering that Ashes of Creation is also putting a depp focus on its economy.
All in all, Ashes of Creation is a title to watch. It looks to take all the joys of the MMO and applies modern game design to make something that could be a must play. I can’t wait to see how they approach making servers, as I would love to get a group together to start on a blank slate. Imagine a Marooners’ Rock server, where the world is what we make it. That, my friends, is exciting.
Let’s hope the initial success of this Kickstarter puts Intrepid Studios in the best position to create the most compelling experience possible in Ashes of Creation.
Find the full Kickstarter here.