With the recent introductions of the redesigned Pet system, the soulbinding of Untiered Items, and the new Battle Arena, we felt now would be the perfect time to talk about the evolution of Realm of the Mad God. These recent changes and others in development are all part of our effort to make the game as fun as possible for new and veteran players alike. Still, we know that change can be scary. With this in mind we wanted to offer some insight into the development and design decisions that have been and those that will be made to Realm of the Mad God in the months to come.
The Nexus Shop, Untiered Items and More
A few months ago higher tiered gear was introduced to the Nexus Shop. This change sparked many opinions from the RotMG community, and we knew that this would be a hard transition. We anticipated some backlash to selling these items, but we were also aware of a market for these items that was not going towards the development of RotMG. Players were already purchasing all of these items from unreliable (and illegal) external sites. While some may contest it, it has been clear to us through multiple feedback channels that introducing these items is a change the overall playerbase has enjoyed. As we continue to release more content into Realm of the Mad God, newer, more powerful items will be introduced as well as different methods of obtaining them. The sale of Nexus Tops is only one step in a long term plan to introduce new functionality to the game and ensure its commercial success.
The soulbinding of Untiered Items has been another controversial decision that we felt needed to happen. This was initially an experiment, but one that we (and many players) have become comfortable with. Since these items cannot be purchased in the Nexus or from external websites, keeping them soulbound creates a sense of personal accomplishment when a player finds one. You can only get an Untiered Item as a reward for your skill in game. Soulbinding these items ensures the personal value of all of Realm’s traded items as well as the sustainability of the in-game player economy by keeping the player market from being flooded with Untiered Items. A lot of players have asked whether Untiered Items will remain soulbound. We will not be unsoulbinding them any time soon. Circumstances, however, can always change. At this time we believe keeping them soulbound is best for the game and the playerbase overall.
The release of redesigned and revitalized pets has been one of the largest features to hit Realm of the Mad God since the introduction of the Nexus. Since pets never die and are available to all of your characters, leveling them up and finding a pet with abilities that match your play-style adds whole new levels of strategy to the game. The pet system offers players another way to improve their characters in addition to leveling up, hunting for gear, and earning Stars. We’ve also recently added 3 new pet abilities that further complement different styles of play. Rising Fury, Decoy, and Savage offers you more choices in what kind of pets you now want to level up, and will help you prepare for new content we have in the works (particularly Elder Realms). We’ll also be adding more ways for you to customize your pets including customizable skins, and and more abilities too. We’ll also continue balancing specific pet abilities against others and against the challenges players face in the game. Having a pet with higher abilities will always give your character benefits, but the exact effects of each ability may change slightly over time.
With Elder Realms being in development, we wanted to introduce a way to test your pets and your skill in a competitive environment. This is why we launched the Arena. Many players have asked about PVP gameplay and the Battle Arena offers an opportunity to satisfy that competitive spirit. In a perma-death game implementing player versus player content is tricky, and we don’t want to undermine the co-op nature that’s a key part of Realm. We created the Battle Arena to allow you and your pet to battle side-by-side against waves of monsters of increasing difficulty. With the Battle Arena Leaderboard players are free to show off their skills in the intense bullet-hell environment that only Realm of the Mad God can offer, and earn prizes along the way. Competing against others for a top spot on the Leaderboard will be key in special upcoming Battle Arena Tournaments which will feature prizes to die for (or at least fight lots of monsters for!). You won’t want to pass up on the Battle Arena Tournaments, as some prizes will even allow you to resurrect your characters.
Realm’s Future: Elder Realms
Realm has come a long way since it was launched and still has lots of room to grow. With Elder Realms you will see huge new challenges that only the best players will be able to master. These will include new zones, realms, monsters, NPCs, bosses, and of course gear. We’re also adding some new systems that will expand the game much as pets have. We have a long list of features and content to add to the game — new ways and places to play, more ways to develop your characters, and new challenges to test yourself against. Polish up your W-A-S-D skills and level up your pet! There’s a lot to look forward to in the coming weeks and beyond.