What would a massively multiplayer Online game (MMO) look like without all of that ax swinging and spell casting? Well, that's exactly what the folks making Wander aim to find out in this new pacifistic game heading to the PlayStation 4.
It's often argued that a solid narrative cannot be crafted without conflict. Gamers wouldn't be faulted for interpreting that to mean “combat.” The vast majority of games tend to require the player to shoot the enemy, stab them with a sword, chuck an explosive at them or pummel them into the dirt through sporty competition. Not a lot of games do away with direct combat, especially in the MMO space.
Revealed today through the PlayStation Blog, Wander looks to change up the MMO formula made popular by games like World of Warcraft and Lord of the Rings Online, relying on the sheer joy and mystery of exploration to carry the story along instead.
It's kind of interesting, then, that such a game would be the brainchild of a Melbourne man named Loki Davison. Yes, folks, Loki wants to shake things up a bit.
Here's the hook: You don't play as a human in Wander. Instead, you're given a massive island to explore in one of several forms, including a griffin (air), a sea creature (water) and a walking tree (ground). No guns. No explosions. Just exploration as a decidedly non-violent being.
According to Loki, the desire to make Wander came from his own case of wanderlust, which saw him traveling around Central Asia, Siberia, the arctic and Himalayas back in the day.
“Growing up I played a lot of MUDs (text-based MMO) and wanted to make a game that was atmospheric, relaxing and multiplayer,” he said. “Wander draws on a lot of that experience. I wanted to collaboratively explore in a game.”
When the game begins, players will find themselves suffering from a bit of amnesia (Hey, not all gaming staples can be removed at once), inhabiting a body that you don't recognize. While exploring your environment and learning from others, operatic tunes may drift across the air, drawing you to new discoveries.
As you dive further into the game, Loki explained that you'll discover lore stone that help shed some light on the world you now inhabit.
We've only seen a couple of basic screenshots so far, which make it seem like Wander would be a long way off from its launch on the PS4. That's not the case, it turns out, as Loki explains that the game will be playable in a couple of weeks during the PlayStation Experience in Las Vegas.
After that, you only need to wait a few more months for the full game to launch in March of next year.