Here Comes a New Challenger! Conquer Online’s Monk Interview
Questions by Vincent Haoson, OnRPG Journalist
Answered by Chief Game Designer Peter
Conquer Online is currently setting itself up for a brand new sixth class, the Monk. So to give you guys more insight in this new class we here at OnRPG asked the people of Conquer Online on what’s what with the monk.
OnRPG: Hello and thank you for giving us the time to talk with you guys! I know you’re all busy with the upcoming Monk class, but can you give us a brief introduction on this new class coming to Conquer Online?
Stemming from ancient China, the concept of the Kung-fu wielding Monk was first inspired by the legendary Shaolin Monastery, which has always been considered a sacred and powerful order in the oriental world. It’s a sacred class of monk with strong spiritual powers (also known as Chi Kung) and fighting abilities. They can assist you in battle by giving your teammates various extra attributes, while still being able to duke it out with other fighters.
OnRPG: What changes will the Monk class bring in terms of gameplay, once it becomes live in the game?
First of all, of course our players get the chance to try a new class and have a totally different gameplay experience. We have to say, a skilled Monk would be a great back-line supporter, and would greatly enhance your teamwork. It should definitely make group PKing more engaging and fun. That’s probably the biggest benefit a team could receive!
OnRPG: Where is the monk categorized in terms of classes? Is it more of a tanker, nuker, support or healer, since it seems that the class seems to be covering a little bit of everything?
The Monk is a very special profession. It’s different from any other melee class in CO. It’s a perfect combination of skilled hand-to-hand combat and back-line support. The Auras can help keep your other fighters in the game, while still being able to take out a few of their own! And the ability to stop the fallen enemies from coming back quickly can turn the tide of the hardest battle.
OnRPG: Will the class be complicated to use?
Playing with them won’t be complicated at all! We want the skills to be simple and practical for the users. Monks have their own combat skills, just like the Trojan’s Fast Blade and Hercules, so they can go for the straight and powerful attack style. With these skills, they could be a great damage dealer. They have some different Auras, as well, which add various attributes on the teammates so their attack or defense will be enhanced, or to remove hurtful curses.
OnRPG: Would this mean that the Monk class is for the more advanced users and veterans of the game? Or are Monks better suited for newer players?
Well, actually, I prefer to say that Monks are for people with friends. If you want to help your teammates but you don’t happen to have the greatest gear, then Monk is your best choice. It’s suitable for all kinds of players, not just any one particular group.
OnRPG: Are Monks more of a lone wolf class, or are they more suited for sticking with parties?
I think Monks are more suited for parties, than for going out on their own. Their magical auras help add various buffs on teammates, so a lot of their greatest benefits would be overlooked. Could they take on the world by themselves? Sure, but isn’t it better to rule the world with a few friends?
OnRPG: How will Monks fare in PvP?
Almost everyone worries about new classes being OP. The Monk is a class with comprehensive abilities, but that doesn’t mean it will be overpowered. Many of its skills are designed for teamplay, so it’s more geared towards more group based objectives. Besides, we believe the arrival of the Monk will work towards balancing out the classes, a bit. For example, the Ninja’s Toxic Fog will be counteracted by the Monk’s abilities, which will mean some of those Ninja’s out there will need to work out some new strategies!
OnRPG: What kind of skills will the Monk class have? Can you give some of the exact skills that Monks will have?
The Monk’s skills can be divided into 3 types. The first is combat skills, like Whirlwind Kick. It’s a powerful kick that sends a spinning whirlwind out from the caster and hits within a certain range. It has pretty good damage, which makes it a pretty cool and powerful skill to have. The second type is mainly about healing and support. Take the Tyrant Aura, for example. Once activated, all your teammates’ critical strike rates will be increased immediately, which would be very helpful in group PK battles. The last type is pretty special, as they’re used on your opponents. You get skills like the Soul Shackle, which will immobilize the soul of a dead opponent and prevent them from reviving.
OnRPG: What form of weapons, armor and equipment will Monks be able to use?
The Monk will have their own class specific items, like a Frock and Monk’s Cap, while Prayer Beads are their only weapon. The Monk looks more like a bare-handed Kung Fu master, rather than the portly friars of English lore. Far more fitting to a game about combat, wouldn’t you say?
OnRPG: What separates Conquer Online’s Monk class from the other Monk class of other MMORPGs?
The Monk is a master of the power of “Chi”, which controls the five elements: metal, wood, water, fire and earth. We also made some special effects on its physical motions and animations, to make it look more unique than the other melee classes, in-game. I think what sets it apart more, is that it’s more about the group benefits, rather than having a muscle-bound brawler class.
OnRPG: What made you guys decide to make a Monk class in the game, since you already have five (Trojan, Taoist, Ninja, Warrior, Archer) in your class roster?
Our players love oriental culture, and that’s one of the reasons why they chose to play our game. And they like to experience different types of classes, so they can have more ways to play how they really want to, which is one of our hopes to include more of. We’d like to offer as many playable options as possible, so there are more possibilities in our game for our players to enjoy how they like. We’ve done quite a bit of research after the release of the Ninja, and we believe the Monk is something that they will really enjoy.
OnRPG: What can you say is the biggest advantage Monks will have against the other classes in the game?
Like I’ve just mentioned, the Monk is a very helpful class. As long as it stays in a team, it will be able to boost the effectiveness of the team. It plays a vital role in PVE battles, especially when confronted with the bigger bosses. It will enhance teamwork by forcing them to keep more of an eye on teammates, and apply the various attributes at the right times. That can spell the difference between getting wiped, and sitting around TC bragging about how you survived to get that last shot in.
OnRPG: Where did you base the Monk class as you were developing it? Do you have specific inspirations for the creation?
Well, the decision to add a new profession was made right after the release of the Ninja, our first new class, back in 2008. Considering the Ninja is a specialized class to play solo, we wanted to make a new class which could bring people together. This class should be very Chinese, and since we are a PVP MMO, it would be better to have a martial arts character. One that is benevolent and merciful, but seen in legends as being the ultimate warrior. Considering all these factors, we finally had the right image, and that is the Kung Fu Monk.
OnRPG: What’s in store for Conquer Online players, once the Monk class becomes live?
We hope with the arrival of the new class, players will find more of what they enjoyed when they started; the fun of playing with others. It will certainly change up how people are doing Guild Wars, not to mention making more runs against bosses and enemy groups.
OnRPG: Can you tell us what you guys will be working on after the new class comes out?
We are currently working on the Achievement System, which contains lots of different achievement goals that cover almost every aspect of gameplay. These self-contained goals will offer new challenges, and help satisfy our more goal-oriented players. The achievements will also come with in-game rewards! We are also designing a new function for Guild members, so that they could build an in-game life together. And we will soon launch an inter-server, skill based PK tournament. It’s a competition completely based on skills and absolutely fair to play, so we’re really looking forward to seeing that in action. Players have been expecting this for years and we’re finally able to bring some of these great ideas to life!
OnRPG: Thank you for your time!