One of the main issues that an open world role playing game developer needs to address is how to handle the fact that the players are evolving and becoming stronger while the game world around them is static.
Some games have enemies that level up while others choose to restrict access to some areas but the developers at Big Huge Games and 38 Studios who are creating Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning have a different approach altogether.
Will Miller, who is a systems designer working on Reckoning, told The Average Gamer that, “When the player first enters one of those regions, we clamp all of the region’s NPCs to the level of the player, provided he’s within the range.”
He added, “So if you’re a level 20 character and you go to a level five to ten area, we clamp it at ten. And if you’re too low, we clamp at the low value. So if you’re one of the players who tries to run way ahead of the game trying to get the ‘sweet loots’ further away from where you’re supposed to be, you’ll quickly run into regions that clamp at much higher levels than you are.”
Basically the game assesses how capable the player is and then decides what levels the enemies will be.
Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning will be launched on the PC, the PlayStation 3 and the Xbox 360 during the month of February 2012.
The developers at 38 Studios plan to use the game world to create a full blown MMO RPG some time later.
The world of Amalur is said to be about five times bigger than that seen in The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and the developers are trying to create a more action oriented combat system.
Until then, Bethesda will be launching Skyrim, the fifth installment in its series.