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Prime World is an MMORPG/multiplayer online battle arena hybrid game, currently under beta testing in North America, Europe, and Russia. It is internally developed by Nival and will be published for PC and Mac with companion apps for iOS and Android platforms. The launch date is expected to be in late 2013.
Prime World combines PVP and PVE session battles in multiplayer online battle arena style with MMORPG-style persistent character progression.
The game uses a castle-building metaphor to display a player’s development and collectible card mechanic for character talents. It has persistent character development between battles and a class system with roles outside of the tank, magic, healer triad. Prime World’s main game mode is Borderlands, which is a classic DoTA map with 3 lanes guarded by turrets and 2 bases.
Nival has released four additional PVP game modes – Dragonwald, with more PvE oriented gameplay than Borderlands, the fast-paced Outpost with single lane, defense-based Homeland, and the zombie-ridden Apocalypse. There is also Shuffle mode – basically Borderlands but with heroes randomly shuffled in a team. At E3 2013, Nival announced PVE modes – single-player campaign and coop “Challenges” missions. Both were available during open beta weekend in June.
The story of the game is a battle between the two nations Dokht Imperium and Keepers of Adornia for control of Prime, a critical resource. Prime is a source of energy, an alien substance that alters the world and gives its users power over it. By controlling heroes, players support their armies, capture new territory and attempt to destroy the enemy base. Each Prime World player is the lord of his or her own castle, the main base of operations and home to the player’s heroes. At the castle, players can build various buildings (from mining facilities to decorative structures), create new talents, and select sets of talents to equip their heroes with for upcoming battles.
There are currently 320 “shared” talents available in the game, each of which can be won in battle or produced in the castle. Talents can be upgraded up to four times, using other talents as a resource. There are also non-upgradeable hero-specific talents – up to 9 per each hero, bringing total number of talents to 617.
Every hero gets experience points for winning or losing a PvP battle or for winning PVE battle. Losing PVE battle doesn’t give player any rewards. Getting enough experience will net a new level, allowing the player to permanently upgrade one of the Hero’s basic characteristics.
As of March 2013 there are 64 Heroes to choose from, 32 for each faction. Most heroes share the same gameplay mechanics for both factions, so they are identical except for their appearance. Each faction has two unique heroes, Artiste and Demonologist for Kingdom of Adornia and Doctrine and Inventor for Dokht Imperium.
Prime World uses optional Facebook Connect to allow players to engage with their friends in the game, creating teams with their Facebook friends and using their help to improve production rates in the castle.
One of the basic talents available in the game allows gamers of a different genders to protect each other if they are playing together, and only if gamers are playing a hero of their own gender.
Another game feature is a different an in-game Heroes’ pricing policy for male and female gamers. After much controversy this feature was cancelled and prices now are even for both male and female players.