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GDC 05: Diablo II meets Star Trek in new Ancient Rome MMO title

Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising in development at Perpetual Entertainment and boasting 'on-board' talent of Diablo II lead designer

Star Trek Online developer Perpetual Entertainment has revealed that it's got a second MMORPG underway called Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising, which is being designed by Diablo II lead designer Stieg Hedlund.

Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising is set against an Ancient Rome (circa 300BC) backdrop with players leaping into the sandals of classic heroes "born of immortal blood". It's said that adventurers will pursue their destines through epic quests "spanning all levels of gameplay" and during the course of play will command god powers and acquire "famous weapons and treasure of myth."

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Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising's time period finds the Republic still wielding significant power, although the Carthaginians, Gauls, and Samnites "threaten the fledgling imperial holdings". Adding further elements of danger, the likes of as Gorgons, Cyclopes, and Furies walk the land, and it's up to players to protect the Republic, its interests and citizens while serving one of Ancient Rome's 12 gods.

Perpetual Entertainment already mentions that "Future expansions are planned to open up new lands and new pantheons of gods", and says that the game "will implement the most interactive, dynamic, strategic and engaging combat system of any MMG - challenging players before battle as well as during battle."

Battles are going to range between traditional MMORPG small-scale, personal encounters and larger-scale affairs with squad combat. Expanding on the strategy and combat system, the developer states that part of the game involves you selecting and then training NPC soldiers in various skills and abilities, creating formations and designing strategies that squads will execute on command.

The idea here is that you can create specific units to perform specific tasks, thereby "maximizing the unique skills and abilities of each individual squad," says Perpetual.

Chris McKibbin, co-founder and President of Perpetual Entertainment and executive producer of Gods and Heroes adds: "Gods and Heroes offers what every player craves in an MMG: content.

"There will be over 1,250 quests at the time of launch, all tied in to the characters and the themes of the unique areas in the game. In addition, players will enjoy private zones for individually tailored gameplay, rich skill-based character development, fully integrated social systems, player-to-player interaction tools, and ongoing contested areas such as forts, territories, towns, castles and mines."

Further info and media - which includes short footage of the game in action - can be found on Gods and Heroes: Rome Rising's official website.

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