Category: InterviewsHits: 13995
Page 1 of 2Despite its weak post-apocalyptic storyline, there was something about the third-person combat, array of unique weaponry, and numbers-heavy customization that drew me in to Hellgate: London even moreso than even Diablo and Diablo II before it. So when Flagship Studios went bankrupt and the game was taken offline in early 2009, it was pretty devastating to a lot of long-time fans such as myself.
Fast forward to this summer, when the launch of the free-to-play Hellgate Global here in North America took a lot of us by surprise. Between the new auction system, new set and mythic items, and never-before-seen Abyss Chronicles quests and bosses, the game has successfully reignited a spark I assumed had long-since burned out. And to sweeten the deal even further, the promised Hellgate: Tokyo expansion pack just hit the server earlier this morning for the ridiculously low price of $2 (or in-game palladium) for an entrance ticket.
So, in order to better understand what type of reception the resurrected game has received since its launch and what the development team has planned for its future, we went straight to HanbitSoft project manager Namo Kang for a quick Q&A. And while there was a bit of a language barrier between us, Namo does let loose quite a bit of interesting information - including the fact that a Hellgate sequel is in active development:
GB: When HanbitSoft acquired the Hellgate IP from Flagship Studios, what assets came into your possession? Are there any assets (portions of the source code, areas/monsters/items that were planned for a future patch, and that sort of thing) that you were never able to obtain?
Namo: Everything (source code, monsters/items for a future patch) became our asset.
GB: How successful has Hellgate been for HanbitSoft in Korea, Japan, and North America, and has the reception you've received since relaunching in North America surprised you? Are you able to give us any specific population numbers or revenue figures for each territory?
Namo: We can't give you the specific population numbers and revenue figures. When we launched Hellgate Global, we were surprised at how many people were trying to access the Hellgate Global server. To keep up with user expectations, we have been working tirelessly.
GB: Despite the fact that you now own the IP, is there anything stopping you from opening servers for the game in other territories, such as Australia or Canada?
Namo: Some Asia territories are not in service. (For example, China, Singapore, etc.) But we can provide almost all the countries including Australia or Canada with Hellgate service.
GB: Hellgate: Tokyo is the only expansion pack you've created since acquiring the game from Flagship, and it's finally hitting the North American server this week (today, in fact). Do you have plans to release more expansion packs in the future?
Namo: Currently we don't have plans to release more expansion packs. If we develop the expansion pack, we will notice about that.
GB: The modding community has uncovered other classes and skills within Hellgate's code that Flagship never implemented prior to their closure. Do you ever plan to add these or other classes/skills to the game?
Namo: Those things are being considered in the close future.