Updates over the last couple of months have been centered about the poe currency “how-to” parts of growth. Not only is it fun to read for budding game developers, it’s also a lot of fun to read for players who just prefer to know “what is going on beneath the hood” with game’s development and why certain design decisions are made. Between the more technical facets of Path of Exile and the more artistic ones, the posts provide viewers with insight into their favorite game.
First up is a comprehensive and intriguing perspective on the design philosophy behind the Undying. Developers felt that the Undying had become a “relatively unremarkable monster type” and wished to do something more to help it stand out in the game. To this end, the team went through a series of preparation stages to make something special to the race throughout the game.
Our aim with the player’s first encounter of Act Three was that the first place would be very silent, with no monsters to battle outside. Upon venturing into the colour, though, players could be billed by mortal City Stalkers and would have to escape to the safety of the sunlight. Their expertise with the rest of the Act will involve a game of caring very much that areas were shaded, while occasionally being made to step out of the light to travel between buildings. Due to their early experiences with the City Stalkers, they’d fear every moment spent out of sunlight, as it’s one step away from being swarmed by the mysterious monsters in Path of Exile. We planned for City Stalkers to possess enormous life regeneration, preventing players from making reasonable progress past them.
Next upon the design docket is a discussion of the design and advancement of Gems. Most notably, the thought process behind the most recently-introduced stone is researched. As you might remember, nine new jewels were inserted “including four wrought stone that concentrated on Necromancy”, one of the signature characteristics in War for the Atlas. Senior Game Designer Rory discusses moving from an overall discussion of skills that would be inserted and how stone could fit in that design matrix. For example, taking the foundation ability of Detonate Dead and changing it with the addition of a stone was something that the team actively explored. Obviously, some abilities worked better than others in this regard, however, as Rory says, all of this is a part and parcel of game development. .