It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!
Updated 4-4-13 115pm PDT
Here is much of the pertinent info I could find. I will continue update as needed. Formatting will follow content, so bear with me. If you have something you would like to add to this FAQ, please cite your source. Please note that quotes from audio/video interviews are paraphrased and edited.
it's obviously based on some of the same legends and lore that were in Dark Age of Camelot, except that instead of having a fully fleshed out world based on those legends we've had a bit of an apocalypse and so this is a new world Video-camelotunchained.net
The influx of power through the Veil destroyed the world that existed before the piercing and these three realms and their leaders are pitted against each other, jockeying for survival in a very harsh and hostile environment. FP10
There are truly no “good guys” or “bad guys” in CU, at least in the traditional sense, as each realm’s actions are motivated by their instincts for self-preservation and survival. FP10
Our progression systems will be based solely on the activities that you are participating in directly (“Die Die. Kill you all. Make you suffer!”) or (“Heal Heal. Heal you all. Make you whole!”) or simply by otherwise helping out in RvR, even if you aren’t very good at it. The reward/leveling systems are a lot more complicated than that and I’ll talk about them in a separate post entitled “Level me up Snotty” coming soon to this blog and man oh man, will that post stir up some interesting reactions. Know that I’m a fan of “You are what you do” gameplay as well as a class-based system for this kind of game so…FP2
However, I may also put in some features that some people might not consider fun (like true day/night cycle, slower and different leveling systems, extremely limited fast travel, no PvE leveling/gear grind) because I believe that will make this a better game for our niche.FP1
The addition of auction houses made it quite convenient for players to exchange goods. They have evolved over time from static locations with interactive auctioneers to, in some games, the ability for the player to buy and sell goods anywhere in the world. While this feature is quite popular (especially for pack rats like me), it has come at the cost of decreasing socialization between players and possibly, an increased sense of disconnection with the game as a world, rather than the world as a game. Again, a great feature for some games but in CU, we will have no auction house (though a commodities market *may* be an option due to the difference between gathered resources and crafted goods). Instead, crafters will control shops that they can run themselves or they can barter their goods in parts of towns that we have customized and optimized for that specific purpose. FP3
There will definitely be an NDA on the forums. We will be honest with players but we do need players to keep some things quiet for a bit. KS Comments
The moment we fund we get started on getting our internal forums up and running. They are crucial to the development process for CU. The guys at MMORPG/subreddit have been very supportive but they/we know we have to have our own forums. KS Comments
Cash Shop/Founder's Exchange
As to micro-trans/RMT/etc. there are no plans to add them into the game, especially the really obnoxious ones found in FTP/BTP games. Might we add some cosmetic items? That really depends on our players and what they want. My instinct is to say no. KS Comments (Thanks Oldskoo)
Right now the plan is not to be able to purchase them after release as that would make the Founder's Exchange like an ongoing cash shop and if you've followed what I've written in the past, I'm not a big fan of that. KS Comments
Yes, you will be able to buy Founder's Points through the Kickstarter. KS Comments
CU will have a full stat allocation system (min-maxers can rejoice now), so that you can spend lots of time truly customizing your character. While you will not be able to totally Bork your build in the beginning (strength 0), you will really be able to focus your stat allocation on your character’s projected career path. There will be racial maxes and minimums but those will only apply to the character creator and “normal” statistical growth. There will be means (magical of course), to temporarily and/or permanently boost your stats in the game though. FP4
The races/genders will be very different from each other in terms of their starting stats/abilities but also in numerous other ways. For example, certain races/genders are better attuned to the sources of magical power in the world. I know some people will complain that this is not fair but that is how it is going to be in CU, where these choices matter. FP4
I want my crafters to know that there is no chance that the stuff they are making can be eclipsed by anything dropped or buyable through the non-player shops with but one exception. That exception is if there are not enough crafters, we reserve the right to make sure that things like population imbalance do not end up in a cascading and insurmountable disaster for a realm. FP2
The way I see crafting is quite similar to RvR so I think it is very safe to say that crafters will not be mirrors of each other. KS Comments
when you level up your crafting skills you will not have to create large amounts of any good, as each item takes time and effort to create. We also do not envision creating a system where the crafters will need the support of many other crafters to make most items. While we want our crafters to work with their fellow crafters at times (more on this later), crafters must be able to do their job without having to rely on a large number of other people to create an item as requiring too much cooperation would greatly reduce the flow of new items into the system. FP7
The crafting system is broken down into three specific tracks, journeyman, master, and artisan (placeholder name). Non-crafter classes are limited to the journeyman track while players who choose to play crafters can pursue the master track and then, if they so choose, the artisan track. Each track has its own set of skills and abilities along with leveling curves appropriate to characters that are not full-time crafters or those who choose to play a full-time crafter. FP7
I would love to see a system where our crafters could also have a greater control on the weapon’s appearance (whether in a mix and match manner or in other ways) but I am not going to promise. We are looking at some interesting possibilities and while the great and powerful Andrew has some ideas as to how we can implement it, again, no promises. BTW, did I mention dyes? FP7
In terms of the crafting system, we want to build this interdependency not through creating a chain of required players (gatherers -> refiners -> builders) because that could lead to its own problems if one link in the chain is damaged/broken but rather to set up crafting goals and tasks that both encourage and reward group cooperation. FP9
Moreover, while having lots of extended CC abilities is a tad bit controversial, we will certainly have some CC (as well as resists and ways to clear the CC) so that smaller groups can have a better chance at dealing with larger groups. FP2
As to mirrored classes, as per my Foundational Principles, forum postings, etc., not a chance. There are not going to be any mirrored classes in CU. KS Comments
The reason to use RPS is because, IMO, the mirrored class mechanic that WoW and other games use is not the right choice for this core RvR-focused game. FP6
Classes won't be diluted. We want all the classes to be unique, interesting and different from each other. KS Comments
Sometimes classes, races, etc. just come out better and unfortunately, I've heard of people who did make some decisions to favor one class over another class based on their preferences. All I can say is that with CU, no race/class will be favored unless it is the CSE Ducks! :)KS Comments
players of CU will be able to create a “crafting-class” character with separate crafting-based ability and skill leveling tracks. These leveling tracks will be similar to the RvR-leveling tracks in the time necessary to “level up” characters so that consequently, players will not simply be able to dump money from their main/alt/guild and quickly level up a crafting character (just as they could not do that with an RvR-focused character). FP7
Right now, none. Do we know that we need a way of getting some sort of, well I don't want to say loot because that just again conjures up the idea that you're going to get everything from the player. And that's not what's gonna happen. Do we know we need to get something off the player in terms of reward for the people that kill the other realms? Yes. Do we want people going into combat thinking Oh my god I'm gonna lose this great sword, no, we don't want them to do that. We have some systems that we're kicking around here that will both reward the players who are victorious and not create a quit point for the people who have lost. Because look, its' about fun. V Rob/MMORPG.com
A short answer is that I want a combat system that is reactive, flows smoothly, fluid/etc. and one where the player(s) have to think a little for themselves without the game doing so much for them. I also don't want to see CU be a game where combat boils down to "1-2-3" "1-2-3" "1-2-3-4" rinse, wash repeat. KS Comments
When you die, and you will die; don’t expect to simply pop back up and get right back in the fight. It is going to be a lot more complicated than that. IMO, that gameplay style embodies some of the problems with many modern MMOs, death without consequence, “easy in” and “easy out” RvR, 6-year old kids’ soccer match, etc. RvR combat must be fun, challenging, exciting and losing must hurt a bit or it means nothing. FP2
death spam, communication such as a herald are already in the design. However, we also have some new improvements on that concept too... MUAHAHA. KS Comments
However, I may also put in some features that some people might not consider fun (like true day/night cycle, slower and different leveling systems, extremely limited fast travel, no PvE leveling/gear grind) because I believe that will make this a better game for our niche. FP1
However, I may also put in some features that some people might not consider fun (like true day/night cycle, slower and different leveling systems, extremely limited fast travel, no PvE leveling/gear grind) because I believe that will make this a better game for our niche. FP1
Speaking as the guy who wrote it, it wasn't using instancing. There were 10,000 individual DrawIndexedPrimitve calls going on, plus an update to set up new bone positions for each one. Not fancy, just streamlined.
Phase two, which I'm working on RIGHT NOW, is to reduce that number of draw calls. The plan is to stream multiple meshes into a single vertex buffer, and then fire off one draw that covers 10-20 characters at a go. It's a generalization of the WAR character art system (which I wrote), in which all the models attached to a character (gloves, boots, helm, etc.) were merged into a single unique per-character mesh so it could be done in one draw. By extending that to work across characters rather than just within a single character, we'll go even further. Of course, the downside of that approach is that in order to get high performance I'll have to treat multiple copies of the same mesh as if they're unique meshes....you're saying that's the problem, but I'm saying it's the solution. :-)
Phase three is to move more of the character animation into a compute shader. I'm trying to keep as much of this off CPU as possible, because the prediction and encoding models needed to push this kind of world over the network takes a fair bit of CPU. As far as the "yes we can make this game" type of demos go, that's lower priority than some other things, so I probably won't get to do it unless the Kickstarter actually funds. Massively comment/Andrew
First, we are currently using Unity and it's a great engine and we've really pushed it a lot. However, there are limitations with it and if we were making a PvE game, we probably would use it but based on the tests we've run on it, that wouldn't be our first choice for a live RvR game. Now, could we use it for prototyping? Yep, we are already doing that. Second, as to other engines there are both financial reasons preventing us from using some of them as well as technical concerns. On the financial side, some of the engines that are interesting want a nice chunk of the subscription fee. Since I intend to have a lower than average sub price, a large amount going to an engine maker is not a good decision. In terms of technical reasons, what it boils down to is that there are some awesome engines out there but most of them are geared to looking great even in a multiplayer game but we need them to be able to handle a MMO where RvR is everything. I'm not totally ruling out using an engine but when you've seen most of the MMOs created with the "usual suspects" they all tend to choke a bit under decent load. We need to do better than that. Is it a bit scary, yes but Andrew has built engines before so... KS Comments
for technology purposes Camelot Unchained’s gameplay pitch is simple: a whole lot of player-controlled characters, interacting together in a world that they affect dynamically. Performance is the primary pillar supporting that — but rather than going for the highest frame rate, our benchmark is the number of players on-screen while running smoothly at our target frame rate. Gameplay and Performance are the two top-level goals of the engineering team, and if we achieve them, we’re good. FP12
As of now we are going to build the engine from scratch. We love some of the off the shelf engines out there but our focus has got to be on an engine that can handle the load of ton of players even if it means it isn't as pretty. Rendering speed trumps all in our case. KS Comments
Guild pride is another important member of the Pride family, the decades long rise of guilds in importance to both players, and designers of MMOs cannot easily be overstated. FP10
During the development of WAR, we did some very good things with the “Living Guild” concept; we have to surpass that here because the purist nature and implementation of RvR conflict in CU presents an opportunity to take guilds to the next level. FP10
at a minimum, guilds should be able to own and build guild houses, land and possessions in a size and manner that reflects their success in the game whether due to participation in RvR and/or as crafters. Guild members must be able to contribute to that success both actively (through donations, crafting) and passively (guild standing reflects the skill/successes of its members) and to be proud to be a member of their guild. Additionally, we need to put mechanisms in place so that guilds can easily work with each other, share information and cooperate in a way that adds to the enjoyment of RvR by its members and the overall success of its realm. FP10
Oh, did I forget to mention territorial control, RvR leaderboards, extremely limited “normal” instances (special events, special unlocks, etc.) FP2
Yep. You always get access of the testing that comes after you as well. KS Comments
There are no "XX hours a week" requirement on the IT testing but people will need to jump in as needed (with allowances for different time zones). KS Comments
Unfortunately, you can't pledge two rewards with a single account. KS Comments
We will of course have a Paypal option but because PP works differently than KS, I don't want to open it up until we fund (like all KSers that I know do). KS Comments
Isn't it wonderful. Kickstarter and crowdfunding can change the face of the game industry in a manner that hasn't happened ever before. Now it is up to developers such as ourselves not to mess it up. KS Comments
In CU, there will be no blinking lines to follow, maps will be very simplistic and non-interactive (except in certain locations) and players will need to learn the world’s terrain to have the best chance to succeed. FP3
our players are not children and this is not an intersection crossing. Over the years many MMORPG designers, me included, have employed various devices and mechanics in order to increase our games’ subscription base. We removed points of frustration (I termed them “quit points” at Mythic), sped up the leveling curve (the argument being that games should not be harder to level than WoW), highlighted evolutionary or revolutionary new features to differentiate our games from our competition (extremely guilty as charged your honor!) and others too numerous to describe here. While this has brought about some very good innovations, it also resulted in the vast majority of MMORPGs becoming easier to player, simpler to master and more “hand-holding” that their earlier brethren. FP3
The other thing because we're going for..I don't think you can describe it as anything else other than hardcore rvr you're gonna get people who really really really want to find other people to fight with. Or really really really want to do the things in rvr that, you know, is frankly why they bought the game. Video-camelotunchained.net
you're not gonna have to worry about well, half the guys don't feel like coming out into the battle tonight. Anyone who is on that server that night is going to want to do something related to rvr. The other thing I haven't even talked about yet is how many people can be on a server..the standard of the old school games such as Camelot was somewhere around 3000...4000..that could be playing at any one time on one server. Part of that limitation of course is all the other things that were happening on that server, right? All the npcs and everything that these servers have to deal with before they go belly up. Video-camelotunchained.net
Not gonna have alot of npcs, we're gonna have some. You need guards of course and you need, you know, animals, and birds flying around but they don't soak up alot of bandwidth.or server capacity so we're gonna shoot for more people per server than we had in the past. Just to clarify, we're not talking about one server. Video-camelotunchained.net
Folks, Let me clear this up since it's an easy one. There will not be PvE questing, PvE drops, PvE zones, PvE leveling. There will be NPCs whether they are guards, animals, etc. mmorpg.com
What if we don’t want to RvR that day but still want to have fun in the game?” Well, that is where housing, crafting and other systems will come into play. As a RvR-focused game, players will need all sorts of items and the crafters will have to supply them. Whether it is arrows, armor, gold for the mint, etc., there’s always going to be somebody who needs something and that’s where crafting comes in. And if you don’t feel like crafting, well, the housing/buildings system are waiting for you. And if that isn’t enough there will be RvR missions that you can undertake that won’t involve sacking a keep but could still involve some RvR (in an open world, not instanced, k thx bye) if you get unlucky. And if that is not enough, well, we will have some other things that you can do but we are an RvR-focused game and if you are not feeling it that night and nothing we have interests you, well, it’s time to take a break, just like any other game. I cannot promise you that CU will meet all your needs for an MMO. It cannot be all things to all people but it can be a great RvR-focused game with your help, feedback, support and involvement. If on some nights it isn’t what you are looking for, well, that’s okay, your realm’s enemies will be still waiting for you when you get back. FP2
Our crafters will never have to worry about whether the gear that they make, the arrows that they fletch nor the ring that they forged in the fires of Mount Doom…, whoops, wrong game, sorry, being eclipsed by something that is dropped by a hummingbird, even if it is the “WORLD’S LARGEST HUMMINGBIRD THAT SHOOTS LASER BEAMS FROM ITS EYES.” The best way to accomplish this is to ensure that there are no drops of powerful items from NPCs. FP2
CU does employ a system where items can decay and can break over time; the decay will be slow enough that players will have plenty of warning before items might break while simultaneously ensuring that players have to replace most items over time (thus increasing the need for crafters and their wares). FP7
if people are looking for sparkly elves no, no sparkling here at least not with the races Video-camelotunchained.net
Well, when the magic poured through the veil, a bunch of short races escaped destruction because it flowed over their heads!!! JK of course. I do want to see some short races in CU, no question. KS Comments
The races/genders will be very different from each other in terms of their starting stats/abilities but also in numerous other ways. For example, certain races/genders are better attuned to the sources of magical power in the world. I know some people will complain that this is not fair but that is how it is going to be in CU, where these choices matter. We want the player to think carefully before they create their character, to run the various character generators and read the guides before beginning the process. FP4
I’ll start by addressing the issue of realm pride as that is the first choice that players will make during CU’s character creation process. There are truly no “good guys” or “bad guys” in CU, at least in the traditional sense, as each realm’s actions are motivated by their instincts for self-preservation and survival. FP10
The Tuatha De Danann are simply trying to restore balance to the world and to begin to prepare for another apocalypse; the Vikings are looking for new lands to settle on and rebuild, and the Arthurians are looking to unite the world under Arthur’s banner and civilize and tame a hostile world. FP10
As to an RP server, we are leaving that up to our backers. If there is enough support, we will have a dedicated RP server with strict enforcement. KS Comments
One of my goals with CU’s design was to look at the concept of sandboxing in terms of all relevant systems and determine where to best apply it. In doing so, I looked at all aspects of this game including character skills, classes, magic system, crafting, building, etc. to determine where we would be best served by utilizing a more building block approach to the system(s) or much more rigid approach. FP11
Because we are eschewing PvE, we are also simultaneously saying goodbye to the most linear of all MMORPGs elements, the storyline. Of all the things that make the vast majority of MMORPGs feel like theme parks, it is how the designers lay out and intertwine the story arc, world and a character’s progression through them. CU will have a strong backstory of course but CU will not have a story arc created by a writer; rather the players will write that story as their accomplishments both fill out and change the world. FP11
No final decision on our stealth-type classes has been made, mainly because we have a new mechanic to use for stealth that we want feedback from our backers on. What I can say though is that we will not have a class capable of going into stealth instantly, popping out, having a strong opener/long-range DD and then instantly popping right back in. Also, we want to include a scout class if we meet one of our stretch goals. It would be designed, as the name implies, to be very strong at scouting but not at long-range damage dealing. MMORPG.com Community Q&A
As to stealth, that is something we are going to discuss with our backers. We do have a mad/insane/BSC idea for them. We'll see what people think. KS Comments
This is the nitty-gritty stuff, for the potential modders and hackers out there. Here be programmer-speak; you have been warned! Also, please keep in mind that right now this is a general plan rather than a shipping product, and there’s still substantial engineering work to do with this feature on our end. You should expect that things will change as we shake down the implementation. It’s one of the first pieces of infrastructure we’ll be rocking on if we fund, though.
On the other hand, when your (or our) code is running in the game and using that library, for performance reasons some calls will be redirected into the client rather than actually making an HTTP request. We’ll encourage — and very likely enforce — that everyone use that library rather than going directly to our server. That will ensure UI mods can be as responsive as possible by using data the client has already cached locally, while still preserving the ability to work standalone. This will be an evolving process of tuning, and we may move the implementation behind a particular query back and forth between the two. However, this is the programming team’s own dogfood, so we promise to make it tasty.
There is a strong possibility that when running in-game, UI mods will be limited so they can’t talk to any servers other than our own (and via our library at that). When code is running in the wild we obviously won’t be able to enforce that limitation, so the token you get will instead provide less access than going through a logged-in and trusted client. Initially, expect a binary system: You’ll either have full access to a character or you’ll have the ability to send data to the outside world, but not both at the same time. We want to make finer-grained controls happen eventually, but “eventually” may not happen in version 1.0 because working through the implications of every possible combination of mix-and-match permissions is not something that can or should be rushed. As a first step the “limited information but with outside access” may become an alternate mode when running in the client.
The “limited” mode will still include nearly all social and economic data, though. What we’re unlikely to provide when code has access to outside servers is realtime, detailed combat data, exact locations, and similar things that pertain to the action immediately occurring in the game world. We want to actively prevent anything resembling a “global shared hivemind” radar/GPS overlay, so expect information with immediate tactical value to be aggregated, summarized, and deliberately lagged when viewed from the outside. There’s a balance there — we do understand that players will talk on IM and forums outside of the game, so we don’t want to provide less information than they already share via good old-fashioned community. However, please bear with us if we initially err on the side of caution and only incrementally open that end of things up.
Finally, the usual sort of constraints about rate limits and throttling by IP and account will be in play here. Don’t destroy the server; it’s where you keep your stuff. http://camelotunchained.com/en/making-a-game-out-of-the-web/ (Andrew)
From what you're saying, it sounds like you think we're making the ENTIRE game out of the web. Let's make this clear: We're building a standalone 3D client. It will be written in C++, and render to the screen with DirectX. It will speak a custom, compressed binary protocol with our servers to perform low-latency updates to its world state. Period. All of that is exactly what you would expect from a traditional, high-performance, native game.
The part that will be web-based is the user interface. Now, as the lead client engineer for WAR, I had a lot of oversight on WAR's UI code. Whether you like the game as a whole, I don't think anyone can say "OMG THE UI WAS SO LAGGY". What you may not have known is that Warhammer Online's entire UI was built in another scripting language called Lua -- mostly because World of Warcraft used the very same UI scripting language, and we wanted to attract WoW modders to WAR.
Maybe your concern is that making roundtrips to the server for AJAX calls will be a slowdown. I'll quote directly, for anyone who watched the video but didn't read the accompanying article:
On the other hand, when your (or our) code is running in the game and using that library, for performance reasons some calls will be redirected into the client rather than actually making an HTTP request. We’ll encourage — and very likely enforce — that everyone use that library rather than going directly to our server. That will ensure UI mods can be as responsive as possible by using data the client has already cached locally, while still preserving the ability to work standalone.
Or maybe you're concerned about rendering and layout performance, rather than the performance of the scripting engine? I'm not. I know where the clock cycles were going on WAR's UI, and I only wish we'd been able to implement some of the optimizations that Chromium andGecko can give us out of the box. (Really; I've looked at their source code!) There's so much optimization that these teams have spent so many years on; we'd be foolish not to take advantage of that.
Now, I won't argue, there are some crappy, badly-performing web pages out there. There are also some crappy, badly performing C++, C#, and Java programs out there as well. I'll admit, there are MORE badly-performing web pages out there, but I attribute this to the fact that putting up a web page is so much more accessible than writing in C that people who aren't the strongest programmers have the opportunity to make things. (That's actually part of the reason I want to do this -- by making it accessible to more people, we'll get more stuff created. There will undoubtedly be some bad mods made by bad coders, but you don't have to install them.) On the other hand, there are some really good and responsive web-based interfaces out there. I use chat programs embedded in the webpages of both Gmail and Facebook, so I'm pretty sure you can build an in-game chat window with JS. I manage multiple accounts with Tweetdeck, which has a lot of UI yet runs as a Chrome app. Heck, I even wrote and laid out the article using awordprocessor that lives on a web page.
I use these things not because I have to, but because they're some of the best-in-class stuff out there. Not only is this going to work, it's going to be easier and faster than the other MMORPG UI systems I've already done. http://www.mmorpg.com/discussion2.cfm/thread/381408/page/4 (Andrew)
I can tell you what I hate to start. Love the show Camelot on Broadway, but that movie Ugh, Richard Harris as Arthur was horrible, so boring. Yet when I saw in on Broadway with Richard Burton it was omg incredible Video-camelotunchained.net