In the past few years, more and more games have started to include ways to play them solo. This is usually easier in cooperative games where a single player can play the “role” of different players at once.
The Masters’ Trials is a cooperative game and right from the start we knew it had to be solo-playable. And not just “play with 2 characters as if you were playing with 2 players” solo. We wanted players to be able to take a single character and play on their own.
However, there was an additional challenge to consider. Each of the characters plays differently, having their own strengths and weaknesses. The game on the other hand has some specific threats that it throws at the players. How do you make it so that the challenge remains the same when each character deals with each threat differently? Something that may be too easy for one of the characters, may end up being way too hard for another to deal with.
On top of that, in a multiplayer game, each character fills a different role, performing different tasks. The Avenger for example, will deal with most of the minions while the Mystic will focus on generating more and more mana to take down the Seals. If you take the Avenger out of the equation though, you are left with a Mystic who has to fight minions. To do that, he will have to focus on damage dealing spells which will result on him not being able to gather the mana he needs.
That problem bothered us quite a bit during the game’s design. We had asymmetric characters and each of them played differently in a multi-player game. They couldn’t all play the same in the solo game!
The solution to this problem turned out to be much simpler than we thought.
Instead of having a solo variant, why not have 4 solo variants?
In other words, since each character plays differently, why not make the solo experience different for each of the characters?
Indeed, this is what you will be getting when the game is released. 4 different ways to play the game solo. Each character has their own setup, their own special rules and a different win condition.
Do you want to do a ton of damage and kill minions?
Play with the Avenger. You will be facing more minions than normal and a tougher Magmaroth at the end but play well and you will be able to handle it.
Do you want to focus on mana?
Play with the Mystic. You will have fewer minions to care about but lots and lots of Magical Seals to break in order to defeat Magmaroth!
Do you like to collect artifacts?
Play with the Loremaster. The more Artifacts you ‘ll get, the easier it will be to defeat the evil elemental!
Can you survive for many rounds an onslaught of attacks?
Play with the Warden. You will have a companion that you will need to protect and you will have to survive inside Magmaroth’s lair for many rounds in order to win.
Each character offers a very different solo playing experience. On top of that, each solo mode has 2 difficulty levels for players to master.
If you like playing solo, make sure to check The Masters’ Trials. You won’t just be getting a game that plays solo. You will be getting 4 different single player experiences, all in the same box!
Vangelis Bagiartakis & Tassos Grigoriadis
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