Many sandbox MMORPG enthusiasts have been wondering the reason behind the relative silence of Trion Worlds on the localization of ArcheAge, and finally we got word on what’s up with the game.
Community Manager James Nichols shed some light on the status of the project, explaining that at the moment the localization team is in the process of integrating the game with Trion’s account/billing system. According to Nichols it’s a very complex process with “many people and moving parts involved”. The original Korean developers from XLGAMES are actually going to Trion’s HQ to help the team set up its server architecture for the game.
The first large chunk of the localization has been completed and now the team is working on updates and doing edit passes to improve quality. There are over 1,000,000 words and climbing of Korean text to translate.
Nichols also explained that “Westernization” will be minimal, and done only to improve usability/understanding of mechanics based on conventions western players have grown accustomed to differing from those usual to Korean gamers.
We should not expect features exclusive to the NA/EU release or sweeping changes to game mechanics, while we can expect small tweaks to the way some existing features function. The developer is also working to make sure that as many of the new features added to the game since the Korean launch as possible will make it into the western launch as well.
The closed beta testing (registration can be found here) will begin after the server structure will be in place and localization will be complete. While Nichols didn’t give a time frame for that, he mentioned that the testing period will last at least a few months.
While you wait for further announcements (that will take “a few more weeks at least” to come) you can check out my hands-on preview with the Korean beta, to know what this awesome sandbox MMORPG is all about.