As part of the Official Fansite project we at the Tech Haven Network have been able to steal Neocron's favorite killer bunneh Christian 'SnowCrash' Schuett for a few moments and interrogate him for some valued information.
We've taken a different approach to this than the other websites. We've decided to aim our questions at getting some much needed information for the longer standing or 'veteran' player base of Neocron 2.
THN: When do you plan to release Neocron Evolution 2.2? Have you set a date, or will it be a case of releasing it, when everyone is happy with it.
SnowCrash: We have no exact release date yet but plan to release it at the end of this year. The balancing project needs very intensive testing as many parts of the core combat system have been adjusted or even completely reworked. It is not like that we have just changed some parameters or pushed a button here and there. The whole project is taken very seriously and so we do not want to just rush it but provide our players with a high quality product.
THN: Recently Holger has said it is likely that the next big thing for Neocron, We'll call it 'Evol 2.3' for now, will be another graphical update, what area will this focus on? Perhaps the eagerly awaited Character and Vehicle remodelling/skinning?
SnowCrash: As Holger said that the next possible step probably will be another graphical update of the game including new content. This is not nailed down yet as we are focussing our efforts completely on finishing Evol 2.2. Of course we are listening closely to the feedback from the community, which means that the concerns of our community will definitely influence the decision making of what comes next after Evol 2.2.
THN: Accessories were one of the main features the community was looking forward to in Neocron 2 Has there been and will there be in the future, any more developments on this feature?
SnowCrash: The accessory feature was planned to be implemented with Neocron 2 but has not been realised due to the high development effort and due to time reasons. We had to finish Neocron 2 and so other, more important, features received a higher priority. At the current time there are no concrete plans to implement this feature.
THN: War Games Inn in Dome of York 7 was one of the locations we saw in a Sneak Peek of Neocron 2 before its release, what is the current status with War Games and is it even still in development?
SnowCrash: Like the accessory feature, the War Games Inn had to be cut due to time reasons. There are no current plans to implement it in the near future.
THN: Wisdom of Ceres has had many different opinions about it since its introduction to the game, the main one being that there are too few WoC weapons. When can we expect to see more WoC weapons and quests in the game?
SnowCrash: In course of the balancing project some new WoC weapons will find their way into the game but I cannot give you any details yet. The Test server will give the players the opportunity to have a first look at what will be implemented with Evol 2.2.
THN: What can we expect (if anything) in terms of new areas to explore/fight in? Is there any possibility of the world being extended or will some of the more unused locations in the game (e.g. Gaia Mines 3, Calida Village, etc) receive a revitalizing purpose like Regants?
SnowCrash: With Evol 2.2 there will be also some new content related to the global storyline “The Rising Decay”. I think you will understand that I will not give out any details about that to not spoil the fun for our players.
THN: The Soul Light system has always been debated within Neocrons population some preferring a simple Faction Sympathy based set-up or at least a more in depth and efficient Soul Light system - are there plans to make changes to this system to improve the atmosphere of Neocron 2?
SnowCrash: We are aware of the players concerns about the current situation of the Soullight system and already have discussed several possible improvements. This is not nailed down yet and will be taken into consideration during the further progress of the development of Evol 2.2. A complete new Soullight system should not be expected but rather adjustments to the existing system.
THN: Are there plans to re-vamp the item distribution system in the near future, As some would say it is unbalanced especially in regards to FSM and FDB items?
SnowCrash: In course of the balancing project we are evaluating the current item distribution and will take possible changes into consideration if this is necessary.
THN: Some factions have very little positive features to draw in members to that faction such as Tsunami Syndicate and Diamond Real Estate which can leave these factions empty - are there plans to balance the factions with regards to epics and bonuses for being in those factions?
SnowCrash: Due to the different background scenarios of the factions some appear more attractive then others. This always lies in the eye of the beholder. Some factions have advantages in one area while others have it in a different area. Especially Diamond Real Estate has rather been viewed as more of a role-playing faction than an active combat faction for example. We will see if there is any necessity to improve single factions in the future.
THN: Some would argue that a lot of the current epic missions are out dated since the move to Neocron 2, are there any plans to update the epic missions and possibly the rewards, as it has been hinted in the past that TGs reward was going to change?
SnowCrash: No, there are no plans to rework the epic missions at the current time. Of course we will continue in fixing any existing bugs in the further development progress.
THN: Are there any changes planned to improve the Outpost war system and the way clans interact with them and each other (Clan Wars)?
SnowCrash: We have already discussed this topic and think that this would definitely have positive impact on the gameplay. But as I have already said we are currently completely focussing our efforts on the finishing of Evol 2.2. It doesn’t make much sense to already iron out the next step when the current one has not been finished yet.
THN: Can we except to see the re-modelling or the addition of new mobs for players to kill in the future? The addition of high polygon models and high res texture mobs in the form of the Genotoxic Mutants was well received with Evol 2.1 and giving mobs a fresh appearance seems to be something a lot of the community would value.
SnowCrash: This might be a part of further graphical updates but as Holger has already said there are no detailed plans yet how this will look like in the end.
THN: Neptune has long been debated and has been considered a 'failure' by a lot of the community, are there plans to make the Neptune server more popular with more complex rule set changes once it is restored after the test server period? If not are there plans to make it into a second International server, perhaps with 1 slot to mirror the official German server set-up?
SnowCrash: The modification of the server Neptune is definitely a topic that can be discussed after the Test server sessions have been finished. The current plans are to restore it to its pre-test server state.
THN: Are there still plans to significantly improve the mob AI? Hence stopping PvE just being about out healing the opponent?
SnowCrash: In course of the balancing project the NPC system has experienced a major overhaul and fighting NPCs will definitely be more of a challenge. A complete rework of the A.I. would take too much development resources at the current time.
THN: This question is just a bit of fun to finish this interview on a mischievous note however this is something a lot of the community and the entire THN website team have been wondering for an incredibly long time. Just where exactly was the following screen shot taken and what purpose does the area serve?
SnowCrash: This level has been created by Timo “Ratboy” Krahl as the Dome of York player shop level. As you know we had to cut the player shop feature and so this level never has been used. We will see if there are other ways to implement this level into the game in the near future.