Interviews

Interviews
Aika Online: All About Beta Testing & More

Suzie Ford | 8 Feb 2010 20:39
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WarCry wraps up its three part interview with Aika Online's community manager, Christina Kelly. The final installment deals with the closed beta, and the challenges/rewards of working on a game like Aika Online. Check it out!

Is Aika Online geared more to the hardcore player or the casual player? What are the best features for each type?

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Although many features of the game would certainly be rewarding for the casual player, overall I'd consider Aika more of a hardcore player's MMORPG, just for the incredible range of possibilities inherent in the game. For the casual player, there's the deep storyline, gorgeous graphics, the variety of classes, fun interaction with the Pran, rich crafting system, the different areas of Lakia with hundreds of unique monsters, and the community-based nature of the game. It's easy to choose to focus on the single player experience or find other casual players to form a party or a pickup team for Battlegrounds. For the player who wants a more all-inclusive experience, there's a tremendous amount of content to discover. I imagine that many players would find the higher level dungeons and raiding content very gratifying to explore, and, believe me, becoming the Lord Marshal of a nation is not an accomplishment that comes overnight. There are challenges in this game which can prove compelling for any player regardless of his or her desired level of involvement.

What is your favorite in-game area or PvP battleground? Describe it to us and include a screenshot please.

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I'd like to highlight the Algon Temple in the Mt. Hessian area, partly because of its significance for the Relic War PvP mode and partly because it's a very interesting area from a strategic perspective. Temples are large, mystical structures which are the specific storage and protection locations for national relics. They are meant to be open to the air and integrated into the terrain of the surrounding area so that they prove challenging to guard and attack. The Algon Temple is situated in a clearing with small hills surrounding it on three sides, which make it very easy to defend. You'll notice that the entrance to the Temple is split into two smaller pathways, which mean that attackers will be funneled into narrow streams when they approach. The other temples are not as biased towards defense, which means the Algon Temple would be a natural choice for storing especially precious, powerful relics. So, would it be better for a nation to store its most valuable relics in this particular Temple, knowing that to do so would mean concentrating its defense at one point at the expense of protecting other relics at other Temples? Or should the nation spread its relics out more evenly among the Temples, forcing would-be attackers to divide their military might? These are questions which the Lord Marshal and his or her cohorts must decide in the course of making decisions which affect the entire nation they rule over. Aika is a game which has the depth of play to inspire this level of strategic consideration.

Aika Online is currently ready for closed beta testing. How does a player get involved in being chosen for the CBT?

Many gPotato users have already received beta keys through email, but if people out there want to try Aika in its CB premiere and didn't get a chance to sign up, fear not! We'll have many third-party beta key giveaways in the days to come, so keep checking your favorite gaming sites and aika.gpotato.com for updates.

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How has internal beta testing gone so far?

It's been an intense process, and also a very rewarding one. The Aika team at Gala-Net has been working around the clock for the past few months with HanbitSoft and JoyImpact to create the best experience possible for those who have been looking forward to the English version of Aika. Rest assured that we have not been slacking off in our quest to make Aika the best game it can be. There have been high points and low points, but ultimately we've been very happy to have the chance to work on such an amazing game.

What have been your most rewarding moments in Aika Online's development?

I can't speak for the game's developers, but as for the Gala-Net experience preparing Aika for release, the best part has been working closely with such talented and passionate people to make this game a success. It's been great seeing the game go through many iterations of improvement and witnessing its development from diamond in the rough to something a bit more polished. I've also really enjoyed interacting with the Aika community so far and watching people discuss their excitement and anticipation for Aika's release.

What have been the most challenging moments in Aika Online's development?

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There are always hitches in any development process, so obviously there have been slightly frustrating moments when certain ideas didn't pan out quite the way we wanted them to or miscommunications set us back a bit. In the end, though, all of us at Gala-Net and HanbitSoft and JoyImpact who have been working on Aika share a desire to bring this amazing game to the West and unleash its true potential as an innovative and truly excellent MMORPG. The challenges only bring that common sentiment into greater relief and make us all believe even more strongly in our joint efforts.

Please include any other information you feel pertinent.

I invite all of you to come to http://aika.gpotato.com, join the community, and get absolutely pumped to experience an MMORPG adventure for the ages!

WarCry thanks gPotato for sharing Christina with our readers! Don't forget to GRAB YOUR OWN AIKA ONLINE BETA KEY RIGHT HERE.