Origins of Malu is an upcoming sandbox MMO ambitious to make some bold overhauls to the traditional MMO genre. What can players expect from this innovative title with big promises? The basics lie in its absence of typical elements and replacement of something else. No classes, in scripted boss fights, no predetermined factions and maps; and an ever-developing persistent world, player-made factions, interactive and adaptable AI, and perma-death.
Sandbox promises the dynamic, freer gameplay brought by player-generated contents. Creation and idea decide the building style, since players use different pieces and parts rather than prefab structures to construct. Four skill sets are available to players to take care of different aspects of construction. Configuration is all about physical items in looks, weight, slope, color, size and so on; sky builder concerns structures in the sky to gain advantage or set traps for others; garbage collecting is for players to use gathered items as raw materials; and replication allows players to build walls, turrets and weapons, etc. for defense and for other purposes. Don’t expect to finish grand project on your own, though. It’s inevitable that players cooperate with others to craft and develop.
Rolling snowball is the basic model for the bigger picture. A group of players build a guild; guilds build their own base at binding areas and grow; high leveled guilds form alliances; and allied guilds finally combine into powerful factions that continue to grow and expand. Together with the formation of guild will come the warfare, for territory, resources, tactical spots and everything. And it doesn’t take place in the pre-set maps; instead, players can lay out maps following the course, which intrigues the role of politics. PvP combat is sure to happen.
PvE is also made with something fresh. There is no scripted boss fight. To take its place, the in-game AI is bestowed with ability to interact with environment and learn and adjust according to actions of players and GMs. So it easily leads to disastrous results if those mobs are taken light of. And perma-death is still another feature that is going to drive adrenalin high. Are you willing to risk the loss of the character, developed perhaps by months of playing, for high profits in several different situations?
Origins of Malu, originally to launch in early 2012, has been postponed to release, majorly due to the turn to more sandbox. How well will those big promises be delivered? It remains to see.