We've already brought you news about CJ Games upcoming MMO competitive first-person shooter District 187: Sin Streets, but when we visited the publisher at gamescom 2012 we also grabbed a sneak peek at two additional upcoming creations, Monarch: Heroes of a New Age and Hounds; both free-to-play MMO titles but two very different games.
Monarch, developed by Maius Games, is an MMORPG set on a massive scale. The player is more than a lone character in the world of Monarch, instead utilising the unique 'troop system' to acquire troops, equip them and level them up to use either in combat or to sell to other players for profit. The player character acts as both a warrior and a commander of these forces, although will advance in level and experience as an individual; a staple of MMORPG gameplay.
Scale really is the selling point of Monarch, with the players and their troops fighting to conquer territory. PvP is central to the game's design, with PvP battles of 100-per-side battling for control of strategic locations in siege combat. These massive siege battles will be held weekly, allowing for the balance of power to switch between the different player factions.
The castle environments featured within the sieges will be fully destructible so there will be a tactical approach in balancing the need to force a breach against the level of damage done to the castle; as capturing a castle in poor repair will reduce the benefits associated with control. In an interesting twist, if a party finds themselves faced with certain defeat they can even burn the castle to the ground rather than let the opposing force gain control of a building in good repair.
More information on Monarch: Heroes of a New Age will be released closer to its projected release date, which stands at Q3 2013.
Another game in CJ Games' planned lineup is Hounds, created by the publisher's in-house development team at CJ GameLab. Like CJ Games upcoming District 187, Hounds is an MMO first-person shooter and is in fact based on the same engine as its cousin. However, in Hounds the emphasis is shifted away from competitive multiplayer and the focus placed on cooperative gameplay.
The game is set in a near-future world ravaged by 'infected' (read: zombies) and the players step into the shoes of the 'Hounds'; an elite fighting force dedicated to protecting the last remnants of humanity from this apocalyptic nightmare in a squad based, cooperative, survival horror experience.
Hounds will blend the skill based elements of a first-person shooter with the traditional character development of an MMORPG. Players will be separated into classes based on their primary and secondary equipment and will unlock new equipment and abilities as they progress through the game.
Cooperative play is at the heart of the game with various multiplayer PvE scenarios and up to 16-player boss raids. However, single player gameplay is also available if desired and although focus is on cooperative play, competitive PvP is also available in the 8v8 'battlegrounds' mode. The game will be centered around several world cities and each of which will feature a number of story maps, PvP maps, boss raids and 4-player cooperative missions.
Again, more information will be available as Hounds approaches its release date, which is currently anticipated to be sometime in 2014.