Ashen Foundry

Alpha Zero Gameplay Preview

On the most recent Intrepid live stream, Steven gathered a party of developers together to roam around the game world featured in the initial round of Alpha Zero testing. 

The first 20 minutes of the stream mostly dealt with resolving some technical broadcast issues, but gameplay starts at the 20 minute mark. Despite a technical hiccup with a node which interrupted the stream for a time, the degree to which this game build represents a playable game is incredibly impressive. 

Personal Takeaways

For me, the highlight of the stream was when the party was adventuring through a swampy area with giant phosphorescent mushrooms, doing battle with the "Dangerous Deathcaps" and "Violent Morels" which occupied the area. The area is environment is extremely beautiful and the game's systems looked more polished than I had expected.

A sneak preview of the Mage skill treeThere were lots of interesting mini-reveals throughout the stream as Steven opened different UI elements, some of which showcased how certain game systems are planned to function. For example, the image to the right showcases a first look at the skill tree present in the Alpha Zero game. Steven is playing a Mage, and we already knew that this set of abilities were the ones available in Alpha Zero, but it had not been previously announced that skills were organized in a tiered system where only certain skills like Ice Prison or After Image are available immediately at level one while more advanced skills like Implosion are only available once you have invested preliminary points into the tree. Another interesting observation was that Steven was using a bow, so the weapon/class restrictions that were present in the PAX build of the game have been removed and characters can choose their weapon set independently of their class in the Alpha Zero build. 

Lastly, I was interested to see the degree of enemy diversity present even in a very early build of the game. It would have been easy for Intrepid to simply make every enemy the same, but instead the world was full of foes ranging from construct-type Animated Armor to humanoids like Towering Trolls, insectoids like the bright blue Brood Stalkers, and fungals like the aforementioned Morels. All of the character and creature assets look really great for the stage of development, so for the lucky users able to play the initial Alpha build there is plenty of game to experience and, most importantly, test.

What were your key takeaways from the Alpha Zero livestream? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!

About Atropos:

I am a dedicated gamer and MMO enthusiast who has been involved with MMO communities since EverQuest. As the creator of Tamriel Foundry and Ashen Foundry, I love the challenge of building platforms and tools for MMO communities to flourish.

3 Replies
  1. #1


    Moderator81 Posts

    The talent system - even this early, is probably the most interesting bit to me. I'm not sure I want to put too much faith in the specifics of what we see right now, but I've grown weary of how much customization has been stripped away recently in MMORPGs.

    A setup where you're allowed to build  on a skill's effects with the subsequent investment of further skill points is an interesting move, as we haven't seen that done in what feels like a long time (in an MMO, anyway). I'm curious to see how the balance philosophy plays out for that aspect in particular.

  2. #2


    Member4 Posts

    I am comparing alpha zero stream to Pax stream. I noticed that the animations were MUCH more fluid,but think they need more work,especially on  jumps and  leaps. It looks like they were walking on the moon.

  3. #3


    Administrator153 Posts
    Ashone wrote on Dec. 21, 2017, 3:12 p.m.

    I am comparing alpha zero stream to Pax stream. I noticed that the animations were MUCH more fluid,but think they need more work,especially on  jumps and  leaps. It looks like they were walking on the moon.

     Totally agree with you. On one hand the game has improved hugely since PAX, which is really impressive. On the other hand the jumping is WAY too floaty (it was in the PAX build too). Hopefully they can re-visit the way that gravity physics are functioning in game for a near-future build.

    Creator of Ashen Foundry and Tamriel Foundry. Former guildmaster of Entropy Rising. Economist and MMO enthusiast.


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