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The peak number of Steam online players exceeded 34 million, and Simplified Chinese became the most commonly used language on the platform After “Phantom Parlu”, the second unexpected hit in 2024 is coming

Game-Time report/In the circle of martial arts and RPG players, “The Condor”, which launched a paid test on January 12, can be said to be the topic that has attracted the most attention recently.

The author was lucky enough to get the trial qualification of this game in advance. Although I already had high expectations for the quality of the game produced by NetEase before starting the game, this open Southern Song Dynasty martial arts world has been completely refreshed in almost all aspects. My understanding of martial arts adventure RPG.

Traveling through time in one second, I never thought I could really live in the martial arts world of the Southern Song Dynasty

As an RPG gamer for many years, the sense of immersion in role-playing and the immersion in the game world are the bridge that allows me to jump out of the real world and enter the virtual space.

From this point of view, “The Condor” can be said to interpret the open world to the extreme. The time in the game is consistent with the real world. If you enter the game at different times, you will see the grand scene of the Southern Song Dynasty at different times of the twelve o’clock, which made the author feel that he has entered the real world of martial arts in the Southern Song Dynasty.

Guo Jing in his youth

What surprised and surprised the author is that “The Condor” did not choose the stereotyped handsome male and female characters in the past martial arts RPG games, but used a realistic style with a slight Chinese comic style to create Jin Yong’s knights, which is both fascinating and exciting. I find it pleasing to the eye without restricting the player’s imagination.

In terms of details, “Shooting the Condor” specially invited Ge Jie, the inheritor of intangible cultural heritage, to perform “Song Yun Vernacular”, and restored the real “Yang Family Gun” in the game by referring to the moves recorded in the Tianbo Yang Mansion Stone Stele Tower. It even refers to many ancient paintings and books to restore the Song Dynasty’s clothing, food, housing and transportation culture in the game. Whether it is scenic spots, people’s clothing, architectural design or carriages, horses and sedans, it can give people the feeling of traveling to the Southern Song Dynasty in an instant.

If you come to the Lingshui courtyard in the game at Mao hour or Xu hour, you can hear the sound of morning bells and evening drums. You can wander on the street and appreciate the food and tea of ​​the Song Dynasty, go to Goulan to listen to books and learn about traditional culture, and go to wine shops to enjoy different Song Dynasty Ci Pai music, giving full play to the artistic conception of “Southern Song Dynasty fireworks, rivers and lakes day and night”.

Listen to “Wang Hai Tide” in the game

For example, just after entering Zhongdu, the author was attracted by the music on the first floor of the restaurant and heard the song “Wang Hai Tide” by Liu Yong, a famous lyricist in the Song Dynasty. If you are not in a hurry to complete the game tasks, you can even enter the music listening mode to watch the singers play and sing, cheer for the singers, and communicate with other people who are listening to the music together.

You can also post comments while listening to music.

What is even more unexpected is that in addition to the day and night changes in the game environment, the “aboriginals” in it will also have different lives at different times. For example, during the day, you can hear the shouts and bargaining sounds of small vendors along the street. At night, these mobile stalls will close their stalls and “get off work.” The flow of people on the street and the interactive content will change significantly.

Day and night changes in the game world

In addition, you can even build the world of Song Ciyuan with NPCs. The industry system in the game allows you to engage in many professional roles such as craftsmanship, tempering, and farmer, as well as various ways of playing such as business districts, private schools, inns, and guessing lantern riddles. The industry not only operates among players, but also attracts gamers. The patronage of NPC inside. Even if you don’t have much time to take care of it, the intelligent AI algorithm in the game can automatically host it to help players maintain the operation of the world.

It is no exaggeration to say that “The Condor Shooting” feels to me to be more than just a game, it is more like a living world.

Players are no longer just “watchers” who watch the plot and play copies, but are witnesses of Jin Yong’s martial arts world and become part of the game world. Every choice and action you make will trigger a “butterfly effect” throughout the world, bringing permanent impact to the game world and story. Even for those difficult plots in Jin Yong Jianghu, you also have the opportunity to change this time.

The game currently provides two branch experiences of Guo Jing and Yang Kang in the “Iron-Blooded Heart” chapter. Although you have to find the truth based on clues, if you are not in a hurry to advance the plot and missions, you can just wander around Zhongdu City, and you may even get martial arts by accident. . For example, when I was talking to an NPC and playing a word-testing and trivia mini-game, I unexpectedly got the move “Light Blade”. In fact, depending on the player’s choice when testing the mini-game, the corresponding rewards will be different.

According to the released information, “The Condor” will cover the 19 eras and 150 years of changes in the world spanned by the “Condor Trilogy”, and it is stated that the characters in the game will age and even die over time. Estimating based on the first chapter, the future content of this game will be unimaginable. This shows NetEase’s determination to invest in the long-term of “The Condor”, and also means that there will be more games in this vivid martial arts world. A large number of high-quality experiences are waiting for players to explore for a long time.

The first server in the world, I saw the sincerity and determination of “The Condor” to solve the pain points of RPG players.

The shock that “The Condor” brought to me was not just the amazing visual effects and the lifelike real world, but deep down that the team was trying to do everything possible to solve the two problems of martial arts RPGs for decades. Big pain points: liver, krypton.

In most martial arts RPG games, after a short novice period, you will be faced with various tasks, activities, rankings, and participation in team battles and national wars. To describe it in one word, it is liver, which is simply worse than going to work. Still tired. This is also an important reason why the author has never spent a long time playing a martial arts RPG game after entering social work.

In addition to the large time investment, another pain point of this type of game is krypton. Most martial arts RPGs will add various rankings. In fact, they are trying to stimulate players to quickly and spend large amounts of money to climb the rankings. Moreover, some resource rewards can only be obtained by completing the list achievements in the early stage, causing many people to choose to leave after unable to obtain exclusive resources. At this time, many games tend to open new servers on a regular basis, attracting players who have failed in the rankings to go to the new area to earn money, and then form a large number of ghost servers. Then they will uninstall the server and open a new area, just like cutting leeks one after another.

Another “compelling” point is career design. For example, choosing a high-output career often requires becoming a big R. Most civilian players can only choose nanny assistance. When the game is launched for a certain period of time, new professions and equipment with higher attributes and capabilities will be added, allowing players to either start over and pay to practice new characters, or directly pay to change professions, resulting in different games and experiences that are the same.

It can be said that the decision to “one server for the whole world” in “The Condor” is very bold and risky.

This not only means that the team needs to solve higher technical challenges, but also means that it cannot “sell values” like other games. As the game planner said in the Q&A session, “You build a world server and then make money by selling values ​​​​and when the player experience is not good, he will not even have a new area to go to, and he can only lose.”

Matching of martial arts moves in the game

Judging from the test experience, “The Condor” also breaks the tradition of martial arts RPG in many aspects of design. Although sects such as Peach Blossom Island, Beggar Clan, and Quanzhen Sect are designed, there is no career setting, which means that players can choose different combinations of weapons, moves, mental techniques, skills, and secrets according to their own game style.

You can join different sects to get unique skills, such as the blue sea tide of Peach Blossom Island, the dog beating stick method of Beggar Clan… While completing the main tasks and interacting with NPCs, players can also obtain various resources such as moves and comprehension points. , constantly improve the character’s understanding of martial arts, and even establish a sect after reaching a perfect state.

Although there are many options for matching martial arts moves in the game, even if you are a novice player, you will not be stuck on skill combinations. Most of the time, you only need to equip one main attack skill to easily complete most tasks. This not only gives heavy players the freedom to explore at will, but also allows light casual users to spend more time on their favorite gameplay.

In order to prevent the gap between new players and old players from being too large, the game also chose a season system, which is extremely rare among martial arts RPGs. At the beginning of every new season, players will return to the same starting line, and even novices will not lag too far behind in progress.

As the main payment point of the game, “The Condor” has invested a very high cost in fashion. Based on the concept of product creation “Song Ciyuan”, each set of fashion in the game is researched through ancient books and paintings, and then shaped. Research and restoration, and on this basis, based on modern aesthetics, we go through processes such as shape improvement, model fabric pre-research and testing, etc. to ensure that the product is beautiful and has enough historical and cultural heritage to not appear in the background of the game. unexpected. After investing so much money, the author discovered that the current fashion price of “The Condor” is 9.9 yuan, a price that an experienced player of the same type of game would find unbelievable.

From all aspects, I can see the sincerity and determination of “The Condor” to maximize the pain points of martial arts RPG games.

The three terminals are interconnected, and you can enter the martial arts world anytime and anywhere.

In recent years, cross-platform games have become an increasingly popular trend. Multi-terminal synchronization allows players to freely arrange game time and platforms. For example, they can experience higher visual effects and operating experience when in front of the computer, and can use the game when going out. You can have an adventure anytime, anywhere on your mobile phone. When using a low-end device, you can return to the martial arts arena through cloud games.

Multi-device coverage and flexible game time allow players to interact with the game in more scenarios, improve user participation and retention, and are conducive to the long-term operation of the game.

It is not uncommon for the industry to try cross-end publishing. However, as the game market enters the stock stage, for the sake of cost reduction and efficiency improvement, most peers choose to use simulators on the basis of existing versions. The game is pushed to the PC platform. Although it has improved the coverage of the game, it does not perfectly match players’ operating habits on PC devices and their expectations for game quality.

“The Condor” has chosen to be released across three terminals: PC, mobile games, and cloud games. In order to ensure that the quality of player experience is not compromised and to produce content that satisfies users and the market, NetEase also uses PC native development based on Two development pipelines for PC and mobile games are developed simultaneously, and the designs are customized according to the operating characteristics and user habits of different platforms to meet the experience needs of players at different times and devices.

It is understood that NetEase has invested a team of 600 people, 6 years of research and development time and more than 1 billion in research and development funds for this game, which shows the ingenuity and resilience of “The Condor” in terms of game production quality and gameplay innovation.

For many Jin Yong fans, Condor Shooting can be said to be an important work that established Jin Yong’s status as “the supreme martial arts king”. Judging from the author’s experience this time, “The Condor” breaks the tradition of martial arts RPGs in many aspects. One world server, no career setting, season system and three-terminal interoperability are all trying to solve the long-term pain points of the category and lower the category threshold. .

Of course, the distinctive design is destined to pose new challenges to the “Condor Shooting” team in terms of content, gameplay, and community operations. However, NetEase’s attempt to solve the pain points of the martial arts RPG category is eye-catching. Judging from personal experience, this game provides new “problem-solving ideas” for both the martial arts theme and category, allowing the industry to see New possibilities for martial arts RPG.

The author believes that as more martial arts eras of the Condor Trilogy unfold in the game and more knights and stories enter the players’ martial arts world, “The Condor” will bring us greater excitement after it is officially launched. surprise.

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