In early August, fans of the action RPG sensation, Torchlight, rejoiced as a trailer for a new entry into the series appeared on YouTube. However, the video itself opened up numerous questions regarding the direction the game was taking. It seemed that the genre of the game was changing from a traditional ARPG to something more reminiscent of an MMO. Soon after the trailer was released, Max Schaefer, co-founder of Blizzard North and the mind behind the series, released a video titled “Developer Diary” in which he confirmed this change as well as discussed the reasons for the transition. Over the weekend, a playable demo of “Torchlight Frontiers” was available at PAX West providing fans a chance to see the new gameplay up close. As Gameinformer reports, here’s how it went.
Torchlight Frontier now features large town zones where up to 8 players can wander around in, as well as dungeons which have a maximum party-size of 4.
Another big change is the complete removal of character stats and the traditional concept of EXP. Instead of stats and leveling up, everything seems to be gear-based. In other words, you progress further into the game completely by gaining better gear.
Daniel Tack from Gameinformer, tested out a class known as “the Forged” which is a robotic character whose abilities revolve around the management of its heat system. Some attacks build up heat, while others dispel the heat – players need to optimize their use of the two to max out their damage dealing and survivability.
The demo showcased some other interesting map effects, such as the changing of day to night, resulting in the appearance of different enemies depending on the time. It also introduced the concept of resources such as rocks (minerals?) and wood which will most likely be involved in some form of crafting mechanic in the final version, but was not accessible in the demo.
Based on his review, it seems like Torchlight’s transition into a more MMO-style ARPG is going smoothly. As someone who has played every single Diablo title religiously, I’m very much looking forward to my own chance to play this game. Rest assured that we’ll be updating you whenever an early access version of the game becomes available. Stay tuned!
Featured Image Source: Arcgames