Chronicles of Elyria, another MMORPG that promises to do great things with the genre by deviating from the current formula that’s caused said genre to stagnate. Being developed by Soulbound studios Elyria promises a dynamic, immersive world where your character ages and dies. A fully destructible world with non-repeatable quest where each action the player takes can potentially shorten the character’s life span. Where do I start with how wrong they are? Not about the dying, aging characters and such but more with all the promises they seem to be making. Promises I don’t think they can keep simply due to the never ending void of features of the game. A 16 person team meant to design and create a world this dynamic is a tough call even for the most experienced of developers.

 

Let’s look at their “5 Design Pillars” that the bald, soul patched man talks about in their Kickstarter video. They are as follows:

  1. Game must be truly dynamic
  2. Heroes must be truly heroic
  3. Anything in the game that requires character skill then it requires player skill.
  4. Event based dynamic story happening in background even when logged out
  5. Introduction of survival elements for dynamic storytelling.

As you can see they like to throw the word “dynamic” around a lot. Dynamic this, dynamic that. My cock is dynamic as well why not put that in your game? So let’s break down these pillars as if we were bashing them down in a video game.

Pillar 1

This pillar uses examples like permadeath, changing seasons, houses and structures wearing/decaying and other crazy things to get its point across. Some of them are pretty rad. The fact that your character can age and die is something no other MMO has done so it’ll be interesting to see what people do once their character is dead and whether or not it’s worth it to keep playing. When you finally do die, 10-14 months irl, then you get to use your soul to create a new character and keep playing the game. The character does not have the same stats but is able to get faster levels in the stats the predecessor used. For example if your original character was a blacksmith then your new character gets faster leveling in all blacksmith related skills. So far no issues here but there is one thing we need to highlight about this soul system. You get a free soul when you buy the game initially but for every other subsequent soul you must pay $30 to get. Seeing as the game is not sub based or free to play then I guess they gotsa make money somehow. This $30 is on top of the $50 you have to spend to first buy the game. I’m interested to see how many people buy a soul after they use up their freebie. Also when you die in the game (not permadeath) you are in the “astral plane” and must make your way to your body in order to resurrect yourself. The more times you die the less time you have to get to your body each time. This means if you don’t get to your body on time then you die permanently. I was hoping we’d get a situation like Brook’s from One Piece. He also didn’t get back to his body in time so now he walks around like a skeleton. With a cane-sword…sword-cane? Whatever.

Pillar 2

This is very ambiguous but from the info given I guess it means that there is no level cap because there are no such things as levels in the game. Your ability to kill something is based on the combat proficiency of you character and your own skill using that character. You know if everyone is special then no one is, that kind of thing.

Pillar 3

Mostly to do with combat but it means lots of things though for brevity I will be focusing on the combat. As mentioned above your ability to kill is based on your skill as well as the weapon proficiency of your character. Someone who has learned to fight properly in the game can beat a player who has better efficiency at using weapons or someone bigger than them. Any stat or number associated with pass or failure should take into account player skill as well.

 

Pillar 4

It’s something I guess. There is no overarching storyline in Elyria and no quest system either. You do get quests now and then but they aren’t super important but more like a distraction to keep your attention or break up the monotony of manually handcrafting a 100 daggers for the thieves! The world itself is there to tell a story and events happen even when you log out so never stop playing the game. Who needs food, water, sleep or any kind of rest. If I stop playing I might miss the biggest event in the game and then I’ll look like an idiot. I don’t want to look like an idiot!

 

Pillar 5

Essentially the Frostfall mod for Skyrim but in Elyria. Your character had basic needs like food, water, sleep, need for shelter and warmth when camping on your travels. There is no fast travel so if you have to deliver a package to a neighbouring town 100 miles east then start fucking walking mate.

 

Don’t forget to pitch your tent which I’m sure most of the people who like Elyria are going to be doing involuntarily while playing. Or furiously masturbating to the destruction of a bakery some dude spent 8 months of his real life time building.