Working on the encounter for Project Faerthale has been a real revelation, not just to myself, but to the entire team. We are trying new things with Pantheon: Rise of the Fallen, and it’s coming together in ways that keep surprising and delighting.

We’ve always known what we want to do with Pantheon in terms of gameplay, stickiness, challenge, and social emphasis. I think we’re nailing those aspects well, but we also want to expand on the concept of what an MMORPG can be. Building one in 2019 is very different than in 1999 in terms of what is technologically possible, but even moreso in what gamers expect. We want to produce the unexpected. What happens when many species are torn away from their home realm and brought together in a place like Terminus? What would such a place look like? How would it feel? What are its denizens’ motivations? How do they interact with each other? These are just some of the themes we are uncovering in the game’s identity and starting to get a glimpse of with this milestone.

So yes, expect an emphasis on social gameplay. Expect tough battles and memorable experiences. Expect a rich world full of opportunities to explore and advance. But also expect surprises. Expect wonder. Expect to have to think differently about the people, environments, and the world you now occupy.

One of the areas being worked on has a dependency on climbing. You’ve seen an early concept in some streams in the past in our adventures through Amberfaet, and we are opening it wide open and exploring what that means in game. Like all of our systems, we aim to make it meaningful and enjoyable. Programming works side by side with Creative to have content fit into the world as a natural part of the overall experience. By the time Project Faerthale is ready to be shown, you will see a much more polished climbing system that adds a fun, thoughtful layer to the gameplay.

This is something we strive to keep consistent with every system we put in the game: to keep it fun and meaningful. If it doesn’t feel a natural part of the game or doesn’t fit in with the world of Terminus, then we will shelve it. That’s a tough call to make, particularly for some systems or content that seem exciting on paper but just don’t feel right when implemented. The purpose and place has to be clear. Once those details work out and the content snaps in, it’s a Eureka! moment. It’s a revelation. I think we have a few more of those moments coming in Project Faerthale.


An Upcoming Stream

On Thursday April 25th at 10 a.m. PDT, Pantheon: Rise of the Fallen will once again appear on stream with CohhCarnage. If you haven’t had a chance to check out a live stream yet, drop on by his channel at twitch.tv/CohhCarnage to join the fun.

This stream will not include any new content or features. As we are still deep in production of Project Faerthale, we are using a build that does not contain any new zones or other content. Instead we will go on an adventure through Halnir Cave from start to finish to capture a true organic grouping experience and the spirit of actual dungeon progression. We’ll fight our way down to acquire Gnashura’s key and work our way back up to hopefully defeat him. Failure is a definite possibility. Fun is a guarantee—see you then!