Welcome to the UNBENDED FAQ

Here in this section we will answer the questions our fans and supporters have asked here in our forum. If you have a question just post it in the forum or email us at info@unbended.de. We’re going to keep the FAQ up to date.


Gameplay (7 new questions)
Characters (4 new questions)
Skill and Crafting System (4 new questions)
World (2 new questions)
Technology (2 new questions)
Financing
Miscellaneous (3 new questions)

In general, new questions are added to the bottom of the section. They’re labelled with NEW If a question directly related to an already existing FAQ entry, the new questions appears directly under the old one.


Gameplay

Are you planning a dialogue system (à la Gothic, Elder Scrolls,…) for interaction with NPC or a “NPC monologue” system (à la Sacred, Titan Quest,…)?

We don’t see general advantages with the dialogue systems mentioned. Actually, those Multiple Choice Dialogue systems tend to slow down the game flow while not offering anything relevant for the game content-wise. There won’t be such a dialogue system for our quests. However, small talk with NPCs in order to learn more about the world is something we are planning. We have already created a prototype model that makes such conversations possible.

Is there going to be a non-character bound inventory chest?

Not even Aureth, the Creator, knows if it’s going to be a chest, but there will be the possibility of transferring items. There are going to be strict rules though regarding the actual usage.

Are there going to be many interaction possibilities in the game, making UNBENDED “lively”?

Surprisingly, yes! 😉 We rather think of UNBENDED as a game than as an oil painting.

Will there be the classic “click on enemy, then attack” in UNBENDED?

Absolutely! UNEBNDED is and will stay an ARPG. We’re working on a combat system that every genre fan will feel at ease with.

Will the story be linear or will there be different choices to control it, possibly different endings?

We’re not going to give a spoiler here, but the fact is that it is not yet determined.

Will there be a multi-player mode?

Of course. That just part of the DNA of an ARPG.

Will die-hard single players then be left out in the cold?

No, why? Both go beautifully together: Coop, PvP, online campaign… all is possible and all will be fun.

Will the combat system be regulated by regeneration time (as in Sacred 1+2) or by the usage of “Mana” (as in Titan Quest, etc.)?

We like regeneration time. It’s almost like real life and in addition, easier to balance. The rules are also more clear to the gamer. So it’ll be more along the lines of regeneration time.

Will there be a limited amount of time for some quests in which they need to be resolved since you won’t be able to meet the quest giver any longer?

Yes and no. There will be some exceptions where the time factor will play a role, but since UNBENDED is not an MMO we won’t get out of hand with that. A quest like “You have 3 days to save the city” is going to be possible, though.

Is it possible to create a “book of sets” (you must drag and drop the set green or unique to save it in the book) where we can collect all the sets that we find? Many users play just to collect items of high quality and level but the inventory of the game is too limited to allow this. A book like this would be like a mini-game, and commit the user for years.

That’s a really fantastic idea! It would enable the player to collect sets they don’t need anymore or can’t use yet. We really like that and will put it on top of our “nice to have list”.

Because amazingly the question hasn’t been asked yet: will there be an HC mode?

There definitely will be an HC mode. The question probably hasn’t been asked yet because it’s a must-have anyway.

How is the combat system going to be in comparison to both Sacreds (Sacred 1: perceived as quicker than the second part, with more “overpowered” effects like life-stealing and i.e. the icons; Sacred 2 rather more relaxed but with skill modification)?

It’ll go more in the direction of S1. Speed is never bad in combat, but in order for UNBENDED to not diminish into a simple action game there will also be numerous non-combat-skills (scouting, crafting, lock-picking, etc.) Combat, though, definitely won’t be slow.

Are there going to be different levels of difficulty, and how will they differ apart from enemies having more life, armor and attack force?

Yes, of course. As in our former games, we want to give all players access to UNBENDED, even if you’re not as experienced. Differences will be in economizing resources for crafting, steeper skill curves, especially for path finding and locks.

If there are higher levels of difficulty, will there accordingly be better items to find or items that aren’t available in lower levels?

Of course. If you enjoy having a platinum armor, then you ought to be a platinum type. 😉

Will there, similar to Torchlight 2, be maps to buy from a NPC or special places (for part of the final) with different bonuses and penalties?

Treasure maps are on the nice-to-have-features list. The characters final games will in part differ from one another.

Is there going to be an auto-loot-system (automatically picking up of items with a function of eliminating items according to rarity)?

That’s something you can safely assume. UNBENDED is supposed to be fun, not be a busy work project in disguise.

Will the game use a round-based combat system?

No, definitely not.

How is the loot going to be in multiplayer mode? Will everything be divided so that you have fights over the best loot or will everyone have their own individual loot?

In S1 we worked with a “first comes, first serves” concept and we still prefer that. For the dynamic of the game that’s surely a good thing. So you have to choose the right fellow players instead of letting the system regulate everything.

Speaking of difficulty of this new title, will you be adding a veteran mode that is very very hard for the best players (with secret bosses like Omega Weapon of FF8, ha ha ha), or is the game to create invincible characters without opponents as in sacred 2, making the game boring? (Niobium level for a character level 200 was too easy).

My only weapons are my mind and the single finger I have left – which unfortunately is broken. It can’t be difficult enough for you? Don’t worry, we’ll think of something.

Are special synergies planned for the multiplayer mode? An example: a mage creates a wall a fire, a long-distance fighter shoots arrows at the enemy through this wall, which then create an additional fire damage.

This idea really exists, but it isn’t worked out concretely yet. Therefore at this moment a friendly “yes and no.”

After playing through the game, will there be a “new mode +” or something similar to further strengthen your hero or will the endgame content be focused on randomly generated maps/dungeons or the like?

Fact is: there will be three levels of difficulty. Everything else at this moment is rather a “nice-to-have.”

Will there be a crate bearer again, perhaps due to some event, and will he look as funny (in case there is one)?

We don’t want to say much concrete about that yet. Word should have gotten around though that yes, there will be crates and non character bound ones, too.

Will there be some variety in the gameplay in the form of fishing (as in Torchlight) or a bit of gambling (as in Final Fantasy 8) – mini games like that?

No, never. UNBENDED is going to be so unbelievably one-dimensional and boring like you wouldn’t believe! 😉

Have you already thought about whether there will be a fixed UI or windows that for reasons of clarity the user can switch on and off?

We certainly would have done something wrong if the user would not get any information he needs. But a monolithic UI is just so 90s… a clear NO to that!

Sometimes you like the look of your equipment so much, you’d like to have be the same for newer, better equipment as well. Will it be possible to transfer a look onto other items?

An understandable question. Skins, virtual sets are certainly very popular, but we’re rather more orientated towards the classic “what you see is what you get.” You’ll be able to live with it, we promise.

Will my beloved S1 fire spiral be there again, and this time around the character in movement, so that it moves along when I continue on with my character?

Pardon? The purpose of such a spiral is just that it’s not moving along; if it did, that would rather be some kind of a fire shield. But we can imagine both quite well.

Are you going to put more value on the recognition value of NPCs and (quest) companions, so that it’s possible to become interested in those characters and their stories?

That’s only a rhetoric questions, isn’t it? 😉

Will moral decisions be included?

As we all know, the grub comes before the ethics. Everything else would be a spoiler. 😉

Will interesting item modifiers such as Split be making a return? I loved the risk/reward aspect of Split and the way it could make new builds possible.

Yes, SPLIT’s one of our favorites, too, even though it was a tough nut to balance. Malicious rumor has it that it’s a bug that’s become a feature. The truth is that we put it in as a little fun feature and it just became something more. As for UNBENDED: there definitely will be risk/chance features.

Will monsters respawn in UNBENDED (like they did in S1)? If so, could we please have an option to disable it?

No respawning, no replay. And please consider the multiplayer mode. So that’s not a banality. But we will optimize and rework some things for UNBENDED. Completely no respawning still won’t happen; it’s a little bit like with those pesky flies… they keep returning from time to time.

Will there be a light and dark path?

Well, there’s a lot possible, but one thing won’t happen at the moment and that’s spoilers. 😉

How improved will the new “Run away! Run away!” enemy AI self-preservation instinct be if the PC is clearly overpowered for them? Last time the enemies just backed up a couple of steps and that was it. Worse, if you tried to pet them on the head (or got too close) they would go suicidal every time and attack you. Sometimes you just want to enjoy the world around you and pet the little critters. :( Could you make them not commit suicide this time?

Well, that’s real AI versus patterns. In the end, it’s somehow about give and take. For an example, imagine fighting against a pack of wolves. You’d probably rather that they weren’t really clever, because otherwise, you wouldn’t stand a chance. They’d simply rip you to shreds and disappear. UNBENDED is going to be an ARPG, not a hunting simulation.

Will the “kobolds” be garden gnomes or lizards?

Well, they’ll be “drifted.”

Will there be blood?

Isn’t the bottom line of the history of mankind simply a trail of blood?

Will there be any factors allowing us to take certain side quests or actions? Like character lvl, unlocking quest after ending other quest, or some other things?

A big yes to this. That’s simply the basics of roleplaying games.

Do you plan on any passive skills?

Still, yes. We’ve said so several times already, and no, we’re not annoyed.

Will elementary forces/effects play a role?

Fire → crossing takes away life // poison → takes away mana or life and so on

Sure. We’re still talking about a RPG, right?

Do you plan on achievements (as in experience points) for a specific number of killed type of enemy?

In principle, yes. But of course also other achievements i.e. how many chickens you’ve saved.

Will it be possible to change the surroundings by direct action? If I i.e. hit a tree with a fire ball, will it ignite?

Maybe not quite like you’ve described it, but… it’ll be something like it.

Are you considering some kind of equipment manager that can be used to save different combinations/complete sets and change between them per click?

The idea is nifty. Yes, we can actually imagine that.

Would it be possible to connect secondary effects of combat skills with (not directly damage increasing) attributes so that it’s possible to influence the way of playing a character by weighting of the attributes?

Now, that’s going too deep into the game mechanics. Let’s try it this way: combat arts need to be clearly defined as such. A healing fireball, just to put forth an example, is simply stupid. Such effects are in our opinion better defined as items. And combat arts should accordingly only every serve for attack or defense. A clear divide helps understanding the game.

Will there be any factors allowing us to take certain side quests or actions?Like character level, unlocking quest after ending another quest, or some other things?

That’s certainly going to be the case. It’s simple roleplaying DNA.

Will there be a class specific quest-line?

Of course. That plays a big role in UNBENDED.

Will weapons and armor have fixed modifications/attributes?

No. Crafting is able to change a lot in UNBENDED. For us, nothing is sacred.

If yes, will those have a value range?

Every type of item will receive a random range through crafting.

Will you implement mechanics where we can get literally 1-shot?

One hit kills? Where’s the question?

Will there be different death animations depending on what was the last hit we got?

Could very well be, but it wouldn’t be a central feature for us.

Will there be different attack animations for each class like in Diablo 3 where different skills have different attack animations and combos?

Definitely yes. There will be a multitude of different animation and of course, they have to suit to the type of attack.

Can we expect a faster paced, more satisfying combat animation this time around?

We surely will be able to offer a good compromise. First, there will be a certain amount of random effects and then, the attack with a broadsword will certainly get another animation than the attack with a bludgeon.

In S. the bosses were so easy to die in 20 seconds, are you going to increase the challenge with the bosses in UNBENDED?

Yes, here we’ll simply reverse the principle. So you’ll be dead in 20 seconds.

In the Sacred series a combat art level 1 had the same appearance as an art level 100. This should be impossible due to the difference in power. Please can you vary the appearance of the arts with the increase of their level and power?

That’s exactly what we intend to do.

Can we expect common fantasy style enemies like orcs, goblins, dragons and so on?

That’s another spoiler. Just expect the unexpected.

Will you let us interact with powerful items that can cause permanent damage to the PC? Like the Deck of Many Things? Or is this too hardcore?

That doesn’t sound bad. Please keep on waiting!

Will I see my “cuddly” mortar-dwarf again?

No, sometimes they don’t come back and the mortar-dwarf definitely is history. We have so many new things and fresh ideas, why should we pull such “golden oldies” from their graves? Even if we really liked him.

Will there be any such funny spells again, like with the woodelf whose “spider arrow” often put tears of laughter in my eyes when seeing the mass convulsions of the goblins?

Be assured of that. Especially the element of the Drift and the highly extended Crafting will ensure that it will be wilder and crazier.

Usually you need to break through the crowd mobs to get to your destination. Will we be able to fly over the mobs with the help of a special device or animal?

How about a jumping blue mushroom?

Will there be specialized merchants opposed to all-in-one merchants? Hat merchants, swords only merchants, Alchemists, Jewelers, Rune salesmen?

A clear YES! We always have supported local retail. The world is coming to an end and we have bath additives, scrubbing brushes and mustard. All right, that joke’s probably not working in English 😉

Will old barrels and rotten chests spawn rats, snakes and bugs just like the graves spawn skeletons and zombies?

In principle, yes, but it will be rather “drifted enemies”. Imagine things like an evil wine spirit coming out of a barrel or a small, golden dragon that’s trapped in a chest. In all cases you will need an unlock skill, though, to even open such containers.

On the new postcards there are some extreme heights (ie. God’s sumit) to see. Wouldn’t it be completely unrealistic not to be able to fall over the edge there? Are there small “walls” everywhere or invisible barriers?

Hey, we’re not in the Alps, this still is a game. And we won’t develop a realistic simulator for mountain climbing. However, there are some creatures there that only all too gladly would help you in sending you back down.

Will there be new random bosses, random events or new content when changing from one difficulty to another (silver – gold – platinum… etc)? Or will all the various difficulties will be 100% identical?

At least, there will be similarities. You will detect differences, but please don’t expect a new game. That wouldn’t be realistic.

What team size (MP) is planned?

The only thing we can say for sure yet is: more than one, less than 100. Definitely something in between those numbers and in any case, something feasible. Above all though with a maximum of fun for every team member. We’re using the formula 15yz/2=((15x²z)/2)-1920z+(15yz/2), where y=gaming fun, z=loot density and x=number of players(MP).

Are town so-called “save zones” or can there also be combat?

Nowhere to run, baby! Be glad if you find a tavern with drift-repelling curtains. Apart from that: UNBENDED won’t receive any no recommendation for retirees. Also in order to prevent abuse we have to defuse everything a little bit. With which we of course mean the opposite.

Will in-game death be punished (loss of XP, destruction of a random item,…)?

Counter-question: Does stupidity always have to be punished? No, we’re not the kind of people that pronounce sanctions, but we’re reserve the right to publish an online table with the most ridiculous kinds of death. It won’t win you fame and glory, but a nice donkey cap. However, survivors have the chance at riches, glory and of course, as much loot as you can carry.

Will there be different kinds of movement (walking, jogging, running)?

Yes, absolutely. And in addition to that one-legged hopping, which might look mighty silly with a heavy pole weapon. The Ministry of Silly Walk ha officially announced to support Unbended.

Will there be evasive maneuvers?

There indeed will be such moves, however we won’t award automated style scores. Whoever it was that spread such rumors.

What close combat weapons are planned?

A multitude of really painful things. Also stuff with needles, pointed corners and sharp paper edges on which many have already badly cut. And hammers, it wouldn’t be funny without hammers. There have to be striking tools! But honestly, close combat won’t miss out, sorry.

What long range weapons are planned?

Pretty much everything that can fly and can backfire badly. That’s why you should always consider one of the old ranged combat rules from the Northern Territories: When the arrowhead is pointing at you, you’ll shoot the bow for the last time in your life. But as not even the ingenious inhabitants of Morgath haven’t invented black powder yet, all these weapons will only be mechanically powered.

Can you already say if the combat values for ranged combat (hit probability, damage, etc.) will depend on the distance to your target?

Yes, definitely – Aetherra may be in some areas s a very strange continent, but some physical foundations can not even the Drift shake.

Are you thinking of a reasonable aggro-management for close and ranged combatants?

Reasonable is what feels reasonable. Which doesn’t consequently mean that we’re going to cover that by way of a complex simulation. We rather want to ensure that there’s an impression of plausibility and we have some great ideas for that. There’s nothing more stupid than taking out a guard with a grenade while the other stays unconcerned standing next to it.

NEW In S. it was strange that after wiping out entire groups [of monsters] due to a quest or a series of quests those returned a couple of minutes later as if nothing had happened. However, as respawning of monsters isn’t bad per se, here’s the question: Will it be possible to rid an area of one or more types of monsters, ie. by completing a series of quests?

Well, it is how it is: Sometimes they just keep returning. Aetherra’s fauna can be tough, especially when the Drift is wreaking havoc. And lastly: No matter how much dust you’ve removed, there will come a time to start up the vacuum again. Actually, an area can be cleaned, so to say: Once most of the quests are done, the spawn will change.

NEW Will there be quests that can change the attitude of NPCs towards the hero?

Hmm… that’s not that easy to answer as our characters so to say possess an inbuild attitude that’s rooted in their DNA. For example: Crystal Mages are in many areas of Aetherra about as liked as Quoral the Desecrator in a school for young ladies. And just because you’re a noble Blademaster doesn’t mean that you’ll be finding open doors everywhere. In Baqua-Al-Dschad for example they don’t like your kind at all and they’ll let you feel it just too gladly – a volley of arrows is a popular welcome present. As already stated: It depends on the character and the local conditions. Beyond that, locally, yes. Individual NPCs and groups can change their attitude.

NEW Will we be able to swim?

In general, in Aetherra swims everything that has a lower specific weight than water. That’s where our two worlds are indeed similar. All right, there are a couple of exceptions on the Aether Seas, but explanations would lead too far, right now. However: Blademasters in full battle armor swim badly on either side.

NEW Will the game have style elements with great complexity or group management with AI (as in Pillars of Eternity)? Or will the singleplayer gameplay differ greatly from the multiplayer or will there be more NPC interactions?

If singleplayer or multiplayer – UNBENDED will be fun in any mode and will always feel special – especially great, of course. There will be differences but of course also similarities. Every type of gamer will get their money’s worth and there won’t ever be a shortage on interaction.

NEW Will the enemy AIs offer a, as typical for these kind of games, unrealistic loot or a more realistic one? (ie. spider drop → two-handed Sword of Destruction? Or rather: spider drop → spider egg or spider legs?)
Well, this begs the questions: What’s realistic in Aetherra? Perhaps there are arachnids that are specialized in pilfering weapons… after all, in our latitudes one does hear of magpies that like to nick the one or other valuable. But keep your calm: The majority of the continent’s creatures leaves in the case of their violent demise just what creatures leave behind – all kinds of extremities would certainly be conceivable.

NEW Will there be an opportunity to network game?

For sure. Simply read the Q&A carefully – this has already been answered in detail.

NEW DPS indicator make games easy/casual. Could you please remove/hide it in hardcore mode?

In any case, it’s a nice idea. We’ll be writing this down.


Characters

What’s going to be the highest possible level of a character?

We don’t believe in level cut-offs. We had to cut off leveling at 200 in S1 because the EXP was getting out of control. Nonetheless, it was a manageable number who reached the 200s. We hope to work without confines, and still there will be hardly anyone reaching higher than level 205 – at least not within our lifetimes.

Is every character going to have its own starting sector in Aetherra?

Yes, that’s how it looks at the moment. Each of the six characters will start from a different area. That isn’t necessarily going to be his home area – the reason for that will be part of each characters individual background story.

Is it going to be possible to die in UNBENDED without outside influences, i.e. because you’re falling over a cliff?

Dying of cough? A cut leg? Falling down the stairs? That makes little sense as it would drastically shift the focus, but the idea is not completely without merit. At the very least we are going to discuss extended options for dying in UNBENDED. Not that there aren’t already numerous options. :)

Classes will have a fixed gender, that’s already been said and explained, but will it still be possible to customize the character a little bit, like with skin color, hair style, nose piercing etc.?

That’s certainly going to be possible – and belongs to “crafting” in UNBENDED. Let us surprise you – it’s going to be witty.

In UNBENDED will each character have its own specific bonus? (Speed 10%, Hp 10%, Find special items 10%, survival bonus 10%, trade skill, blacksmith skill … etc? I Remember that in Sacred 1 there was a similar system.)

Absolutely. The idea of archetypes, which we’re going to consistently implement in UNBENDED, allows us a maximum of possibilities for character builds. These special skills are of course linked to the basic stats of the different archetypes.

Are there distinct “class animals”?

See above. There will be no spoilers here.

Will there be powerful sets and legendary items that can be used to build up and experiment with synergy and combinations with different skills of the character?

Absolutely. There will be two different kind of sets. Legendary sets that you can find, and those sets that you have to craft yourself. In regard of the sets, it’s essential that they not only suit the character perfectly and thus support his or her skills, but they usually also add new skills. Our sets are supposed to be more than simply power pills.

If a character dies, will he/she have some sort of loss?

Yes. The key word here is survival bonus.

Are companions planned that support the hero on his travels in single player mode?

Sure. Not in the form of a sidekick, but rather as a hireling, a mercenary in specific quests.

A question on the flexibility of the character – will jumping, climbing, swimming be possible?

That’s something we won’t spoil here, but there will be certain possibilities concerning flexibility. Despite rumors to the contrary, it won’t be limping.

Will there again be witty quotes and animations for the characters if they aren’t moved for a while? The cut-off of the Templer where he just falls over and its accompanying sound were just genius. 😉

A definite YES for this!

Will there be a playable species that doesn’t look humanoid, just to have something different from the usual, e.g. a tiger, a cat, a flea or a gizmo? 😉

Or maybe a fox? Walks and fights on two legs, runs on four and his combat abilities make use of his unfairly small size that he uses to slip through your legs. 😉

Will there be a Class specific Quest-line?

Sure! That’s a great part of what UNBENDED is based on.

Do you already know when the next character is going to be presented?

Yes, we do know, but we’re not going to say. But one thing we can already say: if you like music, you’re going to love this character how you haven’t loved a character in some time. And no: it’s not Robbie Williams!

Will it be possible to carry sets in combination, two or three at the same time?

A question for your question: is it possible to use the steering wheel of a Ferrari in a Ford Transit? Sure is, but why would anyone do that?

Will there be a monk-like class or a puppeteer?

A monk, a monk. It has lead to heated discussion – why are people that obsessed over clerics? Aspiring to make a career in a monastery? Fact is, the monk is out. Puppeteer? Sounds cool as a concept. Wait until we’ve reached the sixth character, please.

The cold storm of the High Elf in S2 looked good. Will there be something like it in a more condensed way and around the character in UNBENDED?

It’s hard to believe: there will be new effects and skills but we won’t always reinvent the wheel. It’s a nice standard. We can envision that.

Will it be possible to modify such a storm so that ie. strikes of lightening shoot out of it?

That’s too specific at the moment. Are you okay with a “possible”?

Is there a character class of a summoner planned as ie. the necromancer in Diablo 2?

Somehow all these questions on classes completely miss it. We want archetypes, not classes. UNBENDED is too story intensive for mere classes. We will present the remaining archetypes in due time.

Will the characters be differentiated and specialized or will every character be an all-purpose mosh posh as in S2?

See above. The characters are the be-all and end-all. So that’s why no classes, but real types. Gambler, Blademaster and Crystal Mage should show how far the field is.

Will donned armor and weapons be visible on the character?

Of course not. As the emperor’s new clothes, they’ll be completely invisible.

Will items you can wear contain bonuses that strengthen the character (I’m thinking of S. ^^)

Ehm, yeah, sure. That’s why you put them on, because of the “expected damage,” don’t you?

Will there be ultimate set items specific to the character class?

Sure. And the great thing about that, you’ll be crafting them yourself.

Will it be possible to individualize ones armor, i.e. another color, accessorizing with fur patches, rivets, horns and so on…?

The idea isn’t bad. We’ll keep that in mind, promise.

Will there be the classic “3 white hats” vs “3 baddies” character distribution in UNBENDED?

Never ever!

Will the loot when worn be bound to character?

Definitely NO. And we can take an oath on that.

Will the game have different hairstyles/starter clothing/skin tones etc?

There will be some possibilities, yes. For everyone who wants more: BARBIE and the SIMS will be happy about new fans.

S3 shows the Seraphim and the Malakim (winged angel of the Jewish religion), why not introduce the class Cherubim in UNBENDED?

Uhm, what do you mean with S3?

Are you planning to do personal quests for each character?

That’s going to be the case.

Will I see my “cuddly” mortar-dwarf again?

No, sometimes they don’t come back and the mortar-dwarf definitely is history. We have so many new things and fresh ideas, why should we pull such “golden oldies” from their graves? Even if we really liked him, too.

Will there be reliable information on the 4th character this year?

Yes.

Will the still missing characters – to keep the suspense high (or whyever) – stay a secret?

Suspense isn’t that wrong. We have spread some info on the forth character and are actually still of the opinion that you ought to be able to figure this character out.

NEW Do you think that, with regards to the timeline, you’ll finish the remaining 3 characters this year and will publish them, too?

In general, that’s possible, but nothing to be promised. We don’t want to artificially extend anything, but one should still always know at what moment which card should be played. Just ask the Gambler… he knows this only too well.

NEW Will it be possible to play the game through without crafting?

The one or other character might be able to, yes, but: Why should anyone not want to see all wonders of this world?

NEW Will there be a place of retreat for the hero (hovel, house, mansion, castle, palace)?

With the option of a penthouse at the Raven Watch and a spa in the Eltay Forest? Honestly though: What would you do there? Television hasn’t been invented yet and the Cambrian Internet certainly is a nightmare.

NEW Summons, Pets or Familiars? Will they be hardcoded to specific classes, or will we get to choose like in Torchlight?

There will be at least limited options to choose from. We haven’t fully decided this yet as, for us, it’s more a “nice-to-have” and not a key element of UNBENDED.


Skill and Crafting System

Is there going to be potions crafting?

Absolutely. Though the rules apply here as well; you will only be able to craft potions you can neither buy nor find. So you’re going to need to put in some sweat and willingness to experiment.

Will the crafting system be composed (i.e. Diablo 3) in a way that all attributes are randomly created or will they be fixed?

Ingredients and recipes will always come together as a useful item, but the quality of the results are subject to a mechanism that combines skill and chance. That means, the more proficient you are at the crafting skill, the more exact the result. There are also ingredients that are unknown and that under certain circumstances can produce unpredictable results. We would like to mention here once again: crafting will produce unique items in UNBENDED that can be neither found nor bought.

The “trading” skill has always been something characteristic to Sacred in my eyes. Are there plans to include a similar skill in the new crafting system or is it going to be removed?

No, it’s not going to be removed. It instead will gain in importance for the “role-playing” part of UNBENDED.

Are you going for the, in my personal opinion, much nicer skill system of Sacred 2 or even something better?

Something good can always be made better. And that’s going to be the case for UNBENDED.

How does it look for a possibility to re-skill? Planned, rejected, open?

Definitely rejected.

What are you going to do with Combat Arts/skills (will it be like S1 with active CAs & passive skills, or S2 with the ability to modify the CAs in addition to the passive skills)?

General skills and combat skills will be separated more clearly in UNBENDED. The combat skills will have their own little skill tree that allows some modifications.

I have a question on the above FAQ entry. Does this mean a similar, predetermined strategic focus as it was possible in S2 or are perhaps in addition to this completely different developments of the skill base (and even mixtures of those) possible?

There are questions where you need an hour to completely get them; it’s good that we have the time. 😉 Alright, so: there is a similarity to S2, but that was too mechanic for us. The skills will be further apart from the combat skills and the combat skills have to divert from simple “maxing out.” Sure, that’s a wishy-washy answer, but we do need to be allowed to try out some things.

Will there be fixed attributes for item slots when creating items (i.e. attack speed only on gloves and weapons) or are the attributes going to be randomly distributed?

There won’t be any coincidences with crafting, see above. While spawning, the loot-engine will be able to produce some rather exotic items though. That could be quite interesting.

Will there be modifiable buffs and abilities as in S2?

Without going into much detail, the combat abilities will be wonderfully modifiable.

Will there be abilities or buffs that enable you to have small but cheeky companions?

I wouldn’t use up combat abilities for this; that can be done much smarter… oh, almost a spoiler! 😉

As Crafting is of great importance for UNBENDED, are you thinking of a possibility to enable gamers to craft their own sets with self created set bonus and maybe determine the look, too – meaning everything be your own creation?

Crafting will definitely include the color. Chose your own bonus? Well, in principle that’s possible; you just need to use the right recipe. A real DIY would be bad for the balancing and would devalue the hunt for recipes.

Will there be unique items?

For the billionth time: YESSS!

Will the rate of useful uniques be better than in S2?

A rhetoric question? Of course.

Could you perhaps show a sketch/picture with an approximate structure of the skill tree of a class of UNBENDED so we can better envision it?

No.

Will there be sockets on items to put in ammunition, rings and perhaps gems?

Something like that, yes.

Will it be as in S2 or Diablo 2 that you can go through the game with only one skill leveled to the max?

Not if we can prevent it. One of the reasons for us to want skills as pathfinding, crafting or unlock, is that we don’t want that everything just has to be destroyed.

I can’t stand level bound items as in Shaiya, Aion and other online roleplaying games because they make the game boring very quick. A bigger choice of weapons, armor and so on is key for long term gaming fun as collecting is much more fun than. Are you thinking of something like this?

We’re going to break this up by our specific way of crafting. Though the wish to discover new thing should not be lost.

Will there be generated uniques? (in the sense of generated names, random attributes and not in the sense of scaled value)

A clear YES.

In the crafting example, you’re talking about two ingredients. How many ingredients in total will we be able to combine?

Theoretically… the amount is unlimited. But in practice there will be a certain limit, of course, but that can’t be expressed in figures. An example: for a certain master recipe you may have need of items you had to craft in advance from other ingredients. This way, the ingredients sum up pretty quickly.

Regarding the amount of maximally combinable ingredients – how many ingredients that can be used for crafting have you planned?

A lot. No. Even more! There is no limit here and that’s good.

Is it planned that crafting can go wrong, too – meaning that all bonuses and crafting items are gone?

There will be a certain variance for crafting results. Complete mess-ups? Probably not, but it’s not completely decided yet. There will be “extremely critical crafts” that may lead to incredible successes but may also be extremely disappointing.

Can I craft on a green meadow – in the middle of gaming – or will it be only be possible at certain places?

When you have the skills and ingredients, sure. But please don’t be surprised if the result is green, too.

Do you plan on any passive skills? I mean passive buffs from skills which we can level up with “runes”.

We’ve actually already explained that a couple of times, but ok: general skills and combat skills are strictly separated. Combat arts work as attack, defense or buff.

Will the skill system be nicer than that of S2 so that we won’t need to re-skill?

That’s for sure.

Will UNBENDED offer a larger amount and variety (than S2) of combat arts/skills to keep the player from acquiring all of them in the early game? If not, is there any other way you are aiming to prevent players acquiring all the combat arts/skills so early on with nothing new for the rest of the game?

Definitely YES! Though we actually have explained that before: especially concerning the tactical battle, there will be clearly more possibilities, and certain skills that i.e. you need to be successful at the final, character-bound endgame, you’ll only be able to acquire briefly before the finale.

NEW Will it be possible to merge combat arts in combos as it was possible for the Battle Mage in S. with glacial thorns and tornado?

Of course! There will be such possibilities – clearly extended and still quick and easy to handle. At least, that’s what we’re envisioning.

NEW Will there be enough space for crafting ingredients (stackable, separate ingredient bag, crest, etc.)?

Definitely, yes. You’ll like our new collection of bags and pouches by Eastsack – there’s nothing on the continent that doesn’t fit in them.

NEW Will we level up the skills relevant for crafting and trading separately from those skill points needed for combat arts, or will we have to keep a dwarf as in S.1? Resp. will I be forced to level up a second character in Unbended to bring my main character to their limit? Ergo – will a Crystal Mage need to forge even though she can’t learn how to do that?

The keeping of dwarfs is a punishable offense in many of Aetherra’s dominions, just in case someone didn’t know that yet. And no, we won’t force anyone to anything. A Crystal Mage doesn’t have to forge anything, she surely would become subject to mockery and ridicule from her fellow order members if she tried. Crafting skills and combat skills are strictly separate, and trading is again something completely different.

NEW How’s the preproduction going, particularly around the crafting mechanics? Are there any undecided crafting elements?

Please read our already quite comprehensive articles on the subject of crafting. Many questions will then be answered.


World

Will it be possible to discover the world as in the first two titles? With “xx % of the world discovered”?

The first two titles of what? 😉 Yes, of course! That’s one of the key motivation factors and we don’t want to do without it. We’re going to avoid counting inaccessible parts, so that a discovery quote of 100% can be reached.

What final size (in km² or mi²) are you planning for the map?

A length of 7000 Cambrian Miles and a width of approximately 8000 Cambrian Miles 😉 We’re still surveying. The world is going to be very large.

Are you thinking of having a scroll that enables the character to spontaneously return to a city and later “jump” right back to the point of origin? (2-way-scroll)

Town portals? No. And we have good reasons for not doing that. The game is supposed to be played in a forward direction. As gamer you won’t define yourself as a junk picker in UNBENDED, out to earn some Cambrian Silver coins. That’s one of the reasons we developed a crafting system that applies to every level.

Are you planning day/night/weather surroundings?

Yes, definitely.

Are you planning on having randomly generated caves or surroundings?

Definitely not. You will play in an open world with very varied dungeons, so that’s unnecessary. In our opinion, random dungeons destroy the immersion of the game. That’s not what we want.

What are you planning for the travel through Aetherra?

There will be teleporters and, of course, riding animals. Those will predominantly have hooves and suit the human inhabitants of the continent. What the Drift is going to do to the one or other creature… well, we’ll have to wait and see. 😉

Looking at the map, it’s only one half of it, or at least the bottom part of it is missing. Will that be later completed, via Stretchgoal, Addon, etc.?

Strictly speaking, what you’re seeing right now is the northern half of the main continent Aetherra. We have finished the planning of the entire world and it’s distinctly bigger than the actual map. We will show you more soon.

S2 was about 59 square km in size. How big is the seamless world of UNBENDED going to be?

You shouldn’t just count the square kilometers. What we can tell you is that the world of UNBENDED will be damn huge. And what’s even more important, there will be enough content. Technically it could really be any size.

Will there be weather? And derived from that weather effects:

Rain/fog → restricted visibility // snow/ice → movements slowed down // wind/storm → certain areas only passable with specific quest

Everyone talks about the weather; we’d rather just make a game. It is desirable, but certainly not a key feature for us. And to be quite honest? When the Drift comes, you won’t care about the weather at all!

Could you maybe include a scribe as a nice little gimmick where you can chance the name of your character at will, as in Breath Of Fire 1?

But that would be as in Breath Of Fire.

Will your color palette be only composed of greens, browns and greys, like that of many other game developers, forcing your game to consist only of swamps and barren lands, or will you also have green meadows, enchanted forests or something similar? What kind of style will the game actually have?

No! We’ll take out green so it’s only going to look drab and dreary. But seriously: we like color in a game – and lots of it!

Are the humans in the world of Aetherra the only culture creating race (meaning creators of architecture, art, culture, etc.) or are there other races, too, that are on a similar or higher stage of development (elves, dwarfs, etc)?

Hmm… spoiler! Aetherra is a human world… that’s something we put great store in. But even in our own world, there are the most peculiar things. So we’ll see.

Will for an open world and MP “phasing” be part of consideration?

Rather not. At least not how you’d probably interpret it. Phasing, correctly used, is more something for an MMORPG and wouldn’t fit into our basic mechanisms. In a light version, it is at least conceivable.

Should we expect all sorts of monsters to pop out of exhumed graves or will it be the bland old undead?

Hmm… You maybe should not expect that many undead in UNBENDED. We gladly leave that to THE LIVING DEAD.

Does Drift have any specified color? (like blue for T-Energy)

Spoiler! But some color hasn’t ever hurt anyone.

What will you name the ingame currency? Gold is not as shiny as it once was.

Hmm… the gold price might increase again. And it won’t be the Euro, that’s for sure.

Will the blacksmith/jeweler/merchant always be influenced by some skill?

That’s the case.

Will it be possible to evolve their level up to level 200 as the characters, with quests or achievements, customizing their services?

A firm YES to this!

If in UNBENDED there will be mounts, will there be a chance this time to put an armor with socket (helmet, saddle, claws)?

At the moment, we are clearly preferring horses in our world. This also gives us the chance to design many different armors and other regional characteristics for the animals.

Will the merchant of mounts be upgraded to level and offer special mounts more and more rare?

That would be another spoiler. Let’s say… conceivable.

Could you create a neutral area with a portal, a merchant (items and mounts), blacksmith, jeweler, that the characters use to prepare for pvp, and to the right a large space where we can challenge (an immense ring surrounded by trees for example)?

No, that’s not going to happen in this form. This isn’t Diablo, it’s SPARTA! Or something similar…

How would you (in percent or detailed) estimate the likeliness of the characters and places on the artworks with the finished characters and places in the game?

That can’t be expressed in percentages. Sure, you see “only” concept artworks, but they’re showing an idea, a feeling and a vision of certain places in Aetherra. You will recognize the locations in the game directly, but of course, they won’t be strict replicas. Currect example: the dead giants on the Plains of Gaihaen will be very close to the concept art.

Will Rudolf (Rudy) Eizenhöfer draw the “world” of UNBENDED, giving it an unmistakable “style”?

At the moment, Rudy does really great work in the preproduction and will stay a member of the team. If he wants it. :)

Who will draw weapons, armor, objects of use (chairs, tables, chests and so on), flowers, trees, houses and more?

The best artists for objects of use that we know.

How long in (kilo)meters is “one Cambrian mile”?

The Cambrian mile is a mystery in itself. It’s the only measure of length that survived throughout the ages of Aetherra. According to a legend of the Aulthyr, an old merchant people from the coasts of the south-west, it is the length of a foot print of Aureth the Creator himself. He is said to have a shoe size of 171, though in the Althanian size chart. The Althanians are one of the people of the beginning and their body size must have been enormous. There are accounts of Althanian toddlers that used the Deep Weir at today’s Raven Watch as wading pool. The rest is something everyone should be able to work out for themselves.

NEW What if not “D’regs” are the bloodthirsty warriors of Akkon called?

We’re not sure yet. Ever since local mercenaries introduced cashless payment they’ve been called by various names. Dirty scamster is only one of them. Maybe we call them Varoufakis… we’re not sure yet.

NEW How rich will the game be on weapons? Axes, throwing knives, katanas, firearms? And will it be possible to choose when crafting the final appearance of our arms?

Weapons galore. Of any form, color, sharpness, length and handedness. Everything that makes killing nicer, quicker and more brutal. All right: This didn’t come from the hypothetical marketing people but from the heart. And no: The legendary two handed Stormhand will always look just like it does. We don’t come up with this stuff just for fun.


Technology

Which modern licensed graphic engine are you going to use for UNBENDED?

We’ll see. It isn’t even decided that one of the known licensed engines will be used. We’re evaluating the technology on the market, but we’re also thinking of our own engine. It’s certainly not something on which the quality of UNBENDED depends; additionally, those known engines don’t necessarily have what we need to perfectly create the world of UNBENDED. In case you didn’t know, we didn’t use an actual engine for S1 and S2, and instead used different middle-ware that we adapted to suit our needs. Such a solution is also possible. Technically, we’re up for that. Lastly, a seamless world is a challenge for engines built for a level structure and a seamless world is something that UNBENDED will definitely have. That isn’t up for discussion.

What are the System Requirements (PC) you are going for, incl. DirectX Version?

Nobody is able to predict the drivers etc. for 2016. But we assume that DX11 will be sufficient. Of course good RAM resources can’t hurt for the world, but we’re quite experienced in “world streaming” and know what to do.

Are you considering bringing PHYSX into the game?

We are thinking along this line – but we have to be absolutely sure that it’s going to have solid advantages. That means it’s still an open point.

Are you planning on making it possible to save and quit the game and then start it again from there?

That’s definitely going to be the case. You will be able to save at any random point.

If there are going to be PhysX effects (havoc or similar) in the game, will that affect the surroundings (destructibility of objects) and, to some extent, the characters or enemies?

There is no definite decision regarding a PhysX engine. Regardless of how that decision comes out, such an engine wouldn’t determine whether or not the world is destroyable.

Will there be a fixed isometric POV?

Absolutely and that isn’t up for discussion. UNBENDED is and will stay a classic ARPG and for that, an isometric POV is the best perspective.

Are you trying to create a smooth combat system/design with corresponding animations that gives the player a game flow similar to D3?

The animations are going to reflect the combat system, similar to S1. How much the animations are going to reflect an increase in specific combat skills is something we can’t say for sure at this moment.

Will the AI in UNBENDED be your own creation or will it go more in such a direction?

AI is always a delicate matter in ARPGs. Enemies have to act in patterns the gamer can learn. You have to understand those patterns and in the end be able to use them to your advantage. Otherwise, the ogre with the big club comes, whacks it on the ground and goes his way. For NPCs and animals, we’ve always had a useful AI module that allowed them to have daily routines etc..

Multicore CPUs and 64bit will surely be supported and made use of, won’t they? ^^

Certainly. With an 8-core, monsters will run twice as fast. Your character sadly not. 😉

Are you going to keep the interface and the effects low, meaning not so much bling-bling that causes headaches and makes your eyes burst?

We completely understand your pain and keep some health potion ready for you.

Will there be a Linux port of UNBENDED?

A question that comes regular as clockwork! 😉 Probably not. But in the end, it depends on the engine. If there’s a way to export the technology we would at least think on it.

Will you reintroduce the “PC commentary” frequency setting again? Many of us loved to toggle it to our liking.

Not quite decided but it’s on our list.

There have been many unused or deactivated speech resources in your previous works. It’s sad to find great parts of the game missing like that. How much will you be avoiding unimplemented resources this time? Will it be possible to bring them back latter with community patches or something?

Unfortunately, that’s a side-effect of “scripted worlds.” There’s going to be some content that you never get to see or hear. But on the other side that’s also a key for the success of a real RPG when the paths of the heroes are individual ones. And that’s going to be the case for UNBENDED. So you certainly won’t see or hear everything at your first play through.

Do you plan on a version for consoles?

A soft question and a soft answer: quite possible.

Will it be possible to play the game on Ubuntu and on Windows XP (even though it’s old, it’s the most stable Windows)?

No. Welcome to the 21st century. 😉

Will there be a weapon and armor generator that creates a never-ending amount/choice of weapons and armor?

Yes, but it’s not going to be a random generator but we will consider the material and the region and vary it accordingly. (Item) Weapon generators have always been part of our core competences, right?

Any plans for controller support?

Definitely. Control is everything.

Will the servers run on Linux?

A YES to this, too.

Will there be any modding capability and/or modding support for this game once it has been released?

That’s something we are thinking about very seriously.

Considering S2 was great to play with a PS3/360 controller, are you guys considering bringing it to next-gen consoles?

We’re seriously contemplating it. We’ll see.

Why are you only considering the ISO perspective for UNBENDED?

Because we love it and we think it’s still the best perspective for an ARPG. Below the line, it’s all about damage control in the area surrounding the character. That something a first person perspective can’t do and a third person perspective encourages to pretty much go backwards most of the time. And we’re pretty old school about this. However, the looks will be everything but old school.

Will the graphics be in 2D, 3D or a mixture of both?

We already said so elsewhere: it’ll be a mixture. The best of both worlds. Technically, everything is 3D, but the landscape will be painted as once piece. We want to create our unique style with it.

For modding reasons, will all PC, humanoid NPCs and humanoid enemies be interacting with weapons, shields, hats and gear in the same way? As in, all can use any weapon, dual wield, ride, wear any hat, shield, no matter what size and shape their body mesh is?

Technically, that’s no problem, as all characters, no matter if PCs or NPCs, and all equipment are 3D models anyway. And modding… yes, we like that.

Camera & controls: Movable camera and WASD like S2 or fixed camera and click to move like Path of Exile?

Simply question, simple answer: fixed camera with a nice, little parallax effect.

As a long time console ARPG player, imo the biggest issue playing with a controller is using ground targeted AOEs. Do you guys have any plans on this issue?

We completely agree. That’s the reason why the most ARPGs are still easier played with a mouse. Damage control is the alpha and omega and controller are clearly at a disadvantage here. But, it can be done. Those who’ve ever taken a look at the (in our opinion underrated) Champions of Norrath, knows how this problem can be dissolved quite elegantly.

Is the process of considering “what engine to take” soon finished and can the decision perhaps be painted into a postcards, so we can see it?

There is no such process at this moment. All right, for some of you it’s the question between heaven and hell, between light and darkness. We handle it a bit differently. Right now, we have a preferred solution and an alternative one. Both would in principle work; neither really make us 100% happy. But even for the case that we’re not happy provisions have been made. It’s certainly within the realm of possibility that UNBENDED won’t use any of the approved systems with well-sounding names. There possibly might be our own solution that we simply call DRIFT VISION. Under the line, it doesn’t matter to us: UNBENDED shall and will look how we want it to. We’re well-provided on the technical side of things and know, what we do. So don’t panic.

Would you share how and with what software painted landscapes are “rendered” into the game?

When the time comes, we’ll show you that detailed in a special. That’s no empty promise.

Who is/will be full-time “head programmer” for UNBENDED?

We have our Mr. Right for that. He doesn’t want to be named yet, though, for contractual reasons. The same goes for some other members of the team that will officially join us over the course of the coming year. We know and trust each other and it should stay this way.

Who is planned to program what?

You’ll see it at the latest in the credits. 😉

Will you “develop” your characters yourself? (That doesn’t mean the “biography” but the figure the gamer controls, the moving model.)

We personally? No, and you wouldn’t want that. But we’ve taken care of it. In any case, the main characters will be developed internally, for animations and items we have good extern helpers on stand-by.

Will the UI scale properly for big resolutions / screens? I prefer playing games on my TV from the couch, so having a decently scaled UI is a must for me.

For us, too. That definitely will be neatly solved.

How large (hard drive space) is Unbended estimated to be?

We’re not quite sure how many cubic meters of mountains we can fit per 10MB of hard disc space. And of course, one shouldn’t underestimate the Aether Seas. If we don’t compress everything very well, there could be stains on the one or other carpet. We’ll be happy when we reach our goal of 95,87 Byte per cm². But to be serious: Most of you will already own a hard disc with enough space available for UNBENDED.

What development form is thinkable for you (Scrum, waterfall, peer programming, XP programming)?

For outsiders that really think they can assess such things, it’s most likely Scrum. But we certainly weakened the borders and arranged ourselves in such a way that it guarantees the maximum of fun. And that with a waterfall of good ideas…

Will you, contrary to the ongoing trend, try to do without a day one patch?

Everyone actually does. Maybe we’ll even set new standards with the largest day two patch of all times.

Server components are based on Linux based servers?

That’s actually what we’re favoring, yes.

Are you going to implement any anti-cheat measures for servers (open/closed)? Which ones are you thinking of?

We haven’t yet fully thought this through until the end. But it’s one of the things we’re discussing. In general, however, our philosophy is: As much freedom as possible. Cheat and cheat are kinda two pairs of shoes. Using exploits in our system is part of the fun and it’s our task to plug those holes. Hacking is something completely different because it’s unfair; on that we’re fierce and will ban.

NEW Will the game be equipped with a (in my option beautiful) pre-rendered background (as in S1) or a 3d world (S2)? (or possibly even with filters like ie. Cellshading?)

We’ve answered that what feels like a dozen times already. Neither and everything without filters. We paint… well, not all of us, but some wonderful talented people that can paint. For UNBENDED, one principle applies: Everything done by hand. Like hand blown glass flower vases, only it’s an entire continent.

NEW Will the PC portrait be a static picture or a 3D living version? Will we get to see battle wounds on the portrait?

We’re still considering this. There will certainly be a kind of visual feedback, but it certainly won’t be in a 3D version of a character where you can see each and any wound and injury. That’s rather a CT scan and not quite our style.


Financing

Is there a funding goal in $ (or in €)?

We neither can nor want to float numbers; that wouldn’t be very professional. The fact is, at the moment the work on concept and content is progressing well. At the end of the early project phase we’ll be able to get out the abacuses for the first time. At the moment we’re still able to do all relevant work on our own. But the fact is too that we’re keeping the technology scalable. Due to advances in development tools and graphic creation we can reach significantly better results with a budget similar to what we had for S1.

Do you plan on expanding the project donation options any time soon?

That’s certainly going to come after we have completed the early stage of the project, which isn’t going to be long. The Supporter Packages currently available won’t be an option any more at that point. They’re supposed to be reserved for our first supporters.

Will there be a monthly fee to pay in order to play the multiplayer?

Definitely not. There will never be a Pay2Play model for UNBENDED. Being modern robber barons isn’t our business – that would not be very noble.

Are there plans for an Early Access even if the development currently is in the pre-planning, or will the development builds be kept behind closed doors?

We have very concrete plans in this area. As soon as we can show something worthwhile, the supporters will get access. It’s not for nothing that the alpha key is part of the supporter packages. But please, don’t expect anything before the end of 2015.

Is there another possibility for people without a PayPal account (ideally ie. PaySafeCard) to support the project financially?

No, not at the time. That’s mostly an organizational issue and with PayPal (that you don’t have to like) a lot is simply much easier. Maybe you can ask around among your friends and acquaintances and use that short way?

Have you perhaps been contacted by other companies (studios, publisher, etc.) that have shown an interest in the project?

We probably shouldn’t say, but… yes.

Do you plan to work with Blind Guardian again in any way? Or is that too expensive?

Well, asides from the money: it’s the same thing as with the mortar-dwarf. Why should we repeat these things? And yes: music will have an elementary significance in UNBENDED.

Are you financially still able to bring the project to fruition?

Do you mean from our own private caskets? Sorry, but they’re not that deep. But so far, we’ve been able to pay for everything?

Are there by now other investors on-board; if yes, do they influence your decisions?

We’re communicative people, the project is of interest to other people and you talk over it. No one but us has influence on development engineering decisions. Otherwise we wouldn’t even have started with all this.


Miscellaneous

Is there going to be a comprehensive guild and/or clan system?

At the moment, that’s an open point. It seems that a clan system could be a good feature. There probably won’t be any guilds because UNBENDED is no MMO and guilds likely wouldn’t be of much use. The fact is, we think it’s important and sensible that gamers are able to organize themselves in the world.

How mod friendly will the game be?

Simple answer: we like mods. And there will be possibilities.

Are you going to have the characters, NPCs, animals, etc. – that is, all moving things in a game – created after your templates “out of house” or “in-house” with your own game artists?

We’re going to have everything created so that it will look really good. Whether it happens internally or externally – it will definitely be the right “artists.”

Can vegetarians get butterflies in their stomachs?

… just a joke

We weren’t really prepared for these kind of questions but of course they can: you just have to push caterpillars in their posteriors.

Have you already envisioned how long it will take (in hours, as a guideline) for someone to play through UNBENDED in single player mode? With only the storyline quests?

The storyline will, similar to our former games, be clearly over 30 hours. Of course if you can play UNBENDED with your eyes closed, follow only the main story and are on your third play through, you can probably make it in only 10 hours. If you’re doing all the side quests and all epic quests of the characters, you can stay within the world of UNBENDED for a very long time.

Have you already been thinking about the soundtracking?

Hard to believe, we have. Here a courtesy to the inventor of sound 😉

Can we send in speech samples for the sound track?

Sure you can.

Is there going to be a closed and open net again or will the community be responsible for the servers?

There definitely will be a closed net. Due to the continuing rapid development of the online game world, there can’t be a specific answer for an open net yet. As we can much better scale with the help of today’s cloud technology, we might not even need an open net – at least not in its classic form. We will see.

Will there be animated video sequences to better transport the mood of the game, or will you dispense with cut-scenes and the like completely?

To transport the specific UNBENDED mood, video sequences won’t be necessary. Our current motto is: Every Euro for the game, no cent for frills.

Will there be a boxed version? After all, I’d like to loot in real life, too! 😉 And will there be DRM?

Our goal is of course a box. Sometimes it’s just nice to be able to touch things and put them on your shelves. We’re looters as well. 😉 We can’t make a final statement on DRM, but none of us likes it.

Will UNBENDED be available to buy at GOG.com?

There are of course no concrete plans yet, but it’s certainly something we would go for, yes.

Will it be possible to build a multiplayer from your own computer, e.g. as it is for Minecraft?

We certainly will support Open Net. Playing together with others is the most fun, after all.

Can we send in our ideas on effects of class abilities per email, too?

Mais oui! Of course, give it to us.

Games that are developed in the same manner as UNBENDED often only come with English text and speech. Will there be several languages from the beginning? (German^^)

Localization is certainly one of our strengths. S. was published in many different languages; we’ve got the tools. There definitely will be German and English.

What do you think about Gizmo?

Maybe he’s hiding under that stone there? 😉

Will the graphic style resemble your prior projects or will it, similar to the artwork picture, be rather cartoon-y?

Going out from S1, we’d just like to develop ourselves. Cartoon-y isn’t the right term, as neither will our characters be two-dimensional nor will we use cellshading in UNBENDED. We’d like to call the style UNBENDED. Fact is: the environment will look much less generic and it has to look as if cast from one mold. The characters have to fit into that, of course. It’s a fine line, but we’ll manage.

Are you feeling overwhelmed by so many questions, which surely will only increase in time?

No. Only the highest bosses of the drift monstrosities could overwhelm us. We like to answer your questions! 😉

When can we expect a road map (please without deadlines) or a development journal?

After the pre-production. And before you ask, the pre-production is completed when all six characters have been introduced and the world map published completely. Then it really gets going for us.

Do you plan to translate the game to languages other than German and English? If yes, than which ones? I’m asking this question because I visited several Russian Sacred-related sites, and some people there are fairly interested in your project. But many of them are reluctant to donate to the cause because they are afraid that the game won’t be available in the language they can read.

Localization is a key factor for success.

At the moment, we focus on German, English and French. But we certainly know that we have many fans in Russia and would be happy about a Russian version of UNBENDED. We’ll see whether that will happen, but we won’t stand its way.

Will early backers be able to participate in an Alpha or Beta?

A clear yes from us, at least for the beta. We will invite all early supporters once its time. We can’t say anything about alpha keys at this time.

Will you give us access to all the text files to freely translate the game into other languages than English and German? There are fans of your works who don’t speak either language.

As far as we are concerned, definitely yes and we are discussing it. We do like it and would love to support it.

Will you develop UNBENDED as expandable? (AddON/DLC)

Yes with a cherry on top.

Do you plan on giving the supporters insights into the development process?

We hardly think of anything else. Concretely? Following the pre-production, we’ll publish a road map, that will be updated with journal entries.

Are there plans to include the supporters into the creative part of the development (i.e. with ideas for side quests)? That would be especially great if you have your own NPC in UNBENDED.

A clear YES! You can, you shall, you will. Just not right now. Please give us some time first. The homogeneity of the story and the world have to be retained, but you’re going to get your chance, we can assure you of that.

What’s your personal and honest opinion on “S3”?

That’s something we’ve been ask the last days many times. *sigh* Why? Is there something in the drinking water? That can only be answered diplomatically: In our opinion so far there is no S3. But that’s really completely subjective. Please don’t quote us.

Will you again use (known) voice actors for the characters and do you plan on a character-specific/surrounding-independent background music (for the atmosphere)?

That’s the plan.

Why is the game called UNBENDED?

Well, at one point, to be honest, it was a necessity to pretty much rename the game over night. Since then, we’ve not only grown used to it, it’s music in our ears. And looking at it closely: the Drift “bends” the world and it’s the gamer’s task to “unbend” it.

Will it be required that in order to play the game you need to create an account or even have to register at Steam or a similar site, so that it becomes impossible to resell the game as it’s the trend nowadays?

A boxed version of UNBENDED is definitely our wish and intent. And we don’t like DRM, either.

Which studio develops UNBENDED officially?

We’re not telling yet. Almost sure: it’s not going to be called Studio 3. 😉

Regarding localization: would it make sense when i.e. Russian fans realize the translation on their own? Meaning to “crowdsource” the translations?

Preferable all languages of the world! And crowdsourcing is not a bad approach.

Will there be cookies? (blame Rente for reminding me of this)

Sure! But of course only for Christmas.

Will there be crazy surprises? Like the Babylon 5 ship in SUW?

Quite sure. We’re still always up for some fun.

If you could use the name S. instead of UNBENDED, would you use it?

No, by now, we really wouldn’t.

Is it too much to ask for a clan system in the UNBENDED lobby? Something simple, along the lines of WarCraft 3 clan system.

That will happen. Quite simple, but good and useful.

The postcards are beautiful. Who are they from?

They’re painted by our Rudy, a great talent who excellently contributes to our graphics department.

Will you be hiring enough voice actors/actresses? Personally I dislike it when one person is voicing four NPCs as it happened in S2.

We were annoyed by that as well, so that we definitely are aware of the need for many voices. Here, we’ll try to get the maximum out of it, so UNBENDED will be acoustically perfectly staged as well.

Do you plan to present the game at E3 or Gamescom?

That’s usually the job of a publisher, and it’s an expensive affair. We have nothing against posh hotels, free meals and cute fair hostesses. But under no circumstances do we want to pay for it 😉

Will there be any sort of player ranking? If yes, what would determine how high I am?

We are not sure how high you are. But there will be rankings, yes. Though, it will be separated by character, as you can hardly compare apples to pears. In addition, there will be rankings in different categories: level, survival time, personal wealth, amount of battles won, etc.

Can user created items or abilities have a chance to be in-game?

A clear YES to this. We love your ideas and input.

At the moment, how far are you – on a scale of 1-100 – with the story design?

Numbers are something for accountants. Quite far.

At the moment, how far are you – on a scale of 1-100 – with the content creation?

All according to plan.

At the moment, how far are you – on a scale of 1-100 – with the world design?

As you can see: quite far. Some of the outer worlds (islands) are still to be published.

At the moment, how far are you – on a scale of 1-100 – with the character design?

Very far.

At the moment, how far are you – on a scale of 1-100 – with the game design?

Sufficiently. Actually we’re further than we thought we’d be. 😉

When your actual campaign (Kickstarter) begins, will we then get to see the first animated pictures of UNBENDED or only a couple of fresh drawn still pictures?

That’s not 100% decided yet. We have explained this already and we’ll do it like this, too: you’ll get to see animations once we say: this is it. And if it’s still pictures, they won’t be “drawn” only for this purpose.

Will Schmittchen get his own quest line?

No, he’s definitely in well-earned retirement. Almost an enviable position.

Have you taken a look at or played Path of Exile or Diablo 3; and if so, what do you think of them and how would it rank on your personal scale from 1-10?

Let’s disregard scales. Such direct comparisons always are a bit far-fetched. Both are, in their own way, surely nice games, but hard to compare with each other and with UNBENDED also only partially comparable.

Are there any things in Path of Exile and Diablo 3 that you really like and that you would use, too (if you could) or that inspire you, and if so, what are those?

From Diablo 3 it would surely be the opulent presentation and the good story telling. POE probably is more Diablo 3 than Diablo 3 itself. But randomly generated maps are just not our thing. Free2Play definitely isn’t, even if it’s probably still tolerable in POE. The skill tree of POE is for sure impressively big, but on the other hand, it’s not character specific. You probably can’t have everything.

If you had an unlimited amount of time and money, what would you do?

Hang out together all day long, reminiscing old times and take twenty year to develop UNBENDED only for ourselves. And nobody else would be allowed to ever see or even play it. 😉

Will there anything so seriously innovative in the finished game that it won’t be published until a very, very late point due to fear of “idea stealing”?

Yes, that’s the case. If these innovations are something that you personally consider important or crucial is another thing. There are, however, some details that we describe rather vaguely for good reason.

Is it foreseeable when the phase “bring content in any form on paper” will be finished, and the “machine part” can begin?

It actually runs parallel, though there’s a focus in the preproduction on world and content. We know that that’s something you guys like to criticize, but you can believe us that we’ve learned our lessons over the years. We never again will jump into cold waters when we can’t even see the ground. That means: everything has to be dimensioned and defined as exactly as possible. Otherwise we’d definitely leave it alone.

Are there other decisions – like the engraved in stone “ISO perspective” that would be worth telling the community about? (if need be as a postcard)

No, not at the moment. And the postcards will stay reserved for locations.

For what year have you planned the first beta test?

That begs the question how exactly beta is defined. If you mean a solid beta, then that’s probably a nice month in 2016. At least that’s not incredulously a date.

Are there soon any information or considerations worthy of sharing on traps, treasure chests, solo bosses, caves, special quests, special loot, group quests, transportation and so on?

Indeed there is more on any of those points than simply considerations. But it simply isn’t the intent and purpose of this site to document every single step here. There is also no one in the team that would have time to do so. If you want to know something specific, just ask.

When will you post something new in the section “Insights”?

We’re working on it. At the moment, characters, the bestiary and the story gems take precedence.

Are you considering to include the community more at a later point (not beta test) by asking questions yourself?

Definitely yes. That goes for content, too.

Does the team meet from time to time? If so, how often? If not, do you plan on an “office” at some point?

We are in daily contact and see each other whenever there’s time. And that’s planned, yes.

In what quarter will the first story gem be published?

Be happy. The first stories with a real connection to the game are ready and approved. There soon will be something to read. So: Q4/2014.

Is there anything in modern ARPG you hate, and wish to avoid at any cost in UNBENDED?

Well, we actually hate everything in modern ARPGs that doesn’t appear in UNBENDED. No, jokes aside. Personally, we’re annoyed with random stories, the fact that decisions that seem relevant ultimately stay without consequences and the gray monotony regarding enemies. Even main characters often can only be told apart by the color of their effects.

Will there, in the near future, be another wonderful musical trip into the almost unknown world of Aetherra by Mattias Steinwachs?

That’s quite possible, yes. However: Why are we even drawing all those maps and telling you all those stories from Aetherra if in the end it’s all “almost unknown”?

How do you as developers come up with hundreds (thousands?) of names for NPCs when it takes the average gamer what feels like hours to think up a nickname?

Umm, that’s pretty much one of our core skills. Whoever hasn’t come up with at least 100 new names from High Cambria or Kay-An-Khar at the end of the day can count on dishes washing duty the next day.

Have you already taken existing proposals/wishes/ideas from the community/the forum into consideration during the planning phase, or is it too early for that?

Oh, we have considered a lot and included them into our considerations. Even if we don’t comment or answer on everything directly: We certainly read everything. And what’s more, Unbended itself is a wish of the community.

What additional effort would it take to convert the ISO perspective concept into full 360° panoramic view and “distance vision”, quasi EGO perspective?

A considerable additional effort of course, and in the end, it wouldn’t be our game. Meaning: We haven’t pursuit this thought since UNBENDED will never have an EGO perspective. Who wants this kind of perspective will probably not like UNBENDED. In addition, ARPGs are not suited to it. Try clicking behind yourself in first person view. You might get a nice tendinitis, but unfortunately no “damage area control”.

What additional expenses would you need to calculate with in order to convert the concept from ISO to EGO view?

See above. UNBENDED is not ISO because we can’t do EGO, but because we don’t want it. We are old school and we aren’t even really embarrassed about that. Besides the idea of a world painted at a stretch would break away with that and we’d be back at a generically pieced together world. Nope.

NEW Which social media platforms besides Facebook, Twitter and reddit are you going to use?

Hmm… ask that the marketing folks later on, should we employ some. Btw, does Myspace still exists?

NEW How can the community continue to help now? Do you have ideas or suggestions for that?

Include us in your evening prayers, if your specific religion allows it. This doesn’t apply if you belong to the Old Atharaean people. Though they know the term “evening prayer” but it means – strictly speaking – the attempt to copulate with a crustacean in the evening surf.

NEW Will there be elements already seen in Sacred (in its honor)?

There definitely will be references to our earlier worlds. True fans will have lots to discover.