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Codemasters Sets Lords-a-Leaping
05.12.2006

MATT DEMERS
E3 CORRESPONDENT


Codemasters

Two new RPGs were shown off this week at E3 by Codemasters:

The first, Archlord, is a PC MMORPG that will include many unique features. The game's highlight will be the ability to take castles under siege in order to facilitate the goal of rising through the ranks to one day become an all-powerful Archlord of the land of Chantra.

Three races will be able to be selected from the beginning, along with many other customizable character details, such as gender, class, and skills. Each race will also come with a special mount: Humans will be able to ride horses, elves will mount panthers, and orcs rhinoceroses. Traditional MMORPG elements will be found in the game, such as a fairly typical combat system, and over three thousand quests for players to pursue.

Throughout Chantra, there will exist a number of guilds which players may join. Guild leaders can then lead sieges into one of three castles scattered throughout the land, and castle sieges will prove to be a major focus of the game. To besiege a castle, the attacking guild may use catapults and various other siege engines, and the members of the guild defending the castle need to be on their guard because an attack could happen at any time. By capturing one of the three castles, the leader of a guild will have the ability to face off against the leaders of the two other guilds who have control of the other castles. This battle will take place at the end of every month, and will determine who will challenge the current Archlord for supremacy.

Archlords will be granted incredible powers and one-of-a-kind opportunities to make their mark on the world for one month's time. The benefits of being an Archlord will include:

  • The ability to control the weather
  • Power over server-wide economy
  • A unique flying dragon mount
  • A group of NPC royal knights to defend against attacks
  • A place of recognition on Codemaster's Archlord homepage as well as a permanent public record of their legacy
  • A model Archlord helmet encased in glass, sent to their real-life address

The first such Archlord will not receive a helmet; instead, they will receive a trip to the U.K. to receive an eight-foot-tall suit of Archlord armor which will be presented to them in an actual castle.

Beta signup starts this summer. More information can be found at their website.


The second RPG was unveiled as a humorous action RPG, Overlord, and is anticipated for a North American debut in 2007 for the PC and the Xbox 360.

In Overlord, the player will take control of a sorcerer who has wrongly inherited a castle full of minions. Details of the plot were slim, but the gameplay will center largely around utilizing armies of gremlin-like minions to perform tasks for the player's benefit, often at the expense of any innocent bystanders' lives and limbs. Minions will come in many different colors with a variety of different abilities, and may be used to collect items, attack others, and do many other things. Minions will be under the player's control using a "flocking system" in which they may be dispatched to individual targets or set loose to find goodies for their master. The player-controlled sorcerer will have the ability to launch spells and melee attacks which can cause damage and may even manipulate the environment; for example, grasslands can be set on fire by use of some magic.

Look for more information on these two titles in coming months.



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