The Golden Plume Award for Best Foreign Online Game prize was bestowed upon the best games in China by the China Digital Entertainment Expo and Conference (ChinaJoy) on Nov. 4 in Beijing.
Atlantica’s victory comes as the game is preparing to enter beta testing in China. Atlantica developer NDOORS Inc. signed a publishing deal with Chinese gaming leader The9, which publishes World of Warcraft in China, last April. Beta on the Chinese edition of Atlantica is expected to begin in early 2009.
“Atlantica is The9’s most anticipated title,” said Jun Zhu, CEO, The9. “The title has a great premise with its combination of reality and fantasy and the legend of Atlantis. Atlantica will make a big impact in China’s online game market, especially with its exciting turn-based battle system.”
Atlantica has already made an impression on the Chinese, who are tapping into the Atlantica action on the Korea- and U.S.-based game servers.
“It’s an honor to be awarded the prestigious Golden Plume, especially considering Atlantica has yet to launch in China,” said Cho Seong Won, CEO, NDOORS Inc., which is based in South Korea. “We can’t wait to finish the localization process and prepare new content for gamers in China. We plan on living up to the expectations, which have just been set higher by this honor.”
Atlantica has been winning other accolades in addition to the Golden Plume. In Japan, where it is being published by Nexon Japan and is in open beta, Atlantica has hit number one in a most popular games list at 4gamer.net, one of Japan’s most influential webzines. In North America, Atlantica has reached number one on MMORPG.com’s “Most Popular” list and has been the top free-to-play game for three straight months at TenTonHammer.com.
With its licensing deal with Taiwan’s leading publisher Gamania, Atlantica will be reaching four of the major gaming markets in the world.
The strategic turn-based MMORPG, which sends players on a globe-hopping adventure around the Earth, has seen tremendous growth since its debut with the number of daily unique players doubling. The average number of concurrent players has increased by 300% since introduction and has filled servers to capacity. NDOORS Interactive will be opening new servers beginning Saturday, Nov. 8.
The turn-based combat system offers players the chance to strategically plan every move of the nine characters in their group. Players can form teams of three to bring 27 controllable characters into combat. Or for simple fights, players can preset each character/mercenary's skill set and let the auto-battle system resolve the fight.
The mercenary system gives players the chance to manage multiple characters' development simultaneously. In addition to their main character, players can hire eight mercenaries each with a different class and skills. They can be obtained as an infant and raised, married to other mercenaries and even have their own children. Mercenaries? stats will decline as they age, necessitating the need to constantly update and upkeep the mercenary roster.
The city/country management system adds a layer of strategic play beyond typical party level interaction. Guilds can establish control of cities and go to war with each other. They will need to plan everything from culture, commerce and industry, even down to the placement of buildings for the maximum output. Groups of guilds can even band together to take control of countries. Controlling cities and countries allows them to obtain rare items and mercenaries.
Players take on the quest to destroy the Oriharukon energy, a powerful sensor from Atlantis that is poisoning the world. This journey will take players around the globe, including the ancient civilizations of Hanyang (Korea), Indus Valley (India and Pakistan), Mesopotamia (Iraq, Syria and Turkey) and Egypt, as well as North America and legendary locales such as the Pyramids and Angkor Wat.
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