Aurora44 Games has just finished up an AMA for their upcoming game Ashen on Reddit this morning, revealing quite a few new details about the game.

According to the development team, they’re currently aiming  to include 20+ hours of gameplay in Ashen, with added time including players’ exploration of the open world they’re developing.

We are expecting the average playtime for Ashen to vary from player to player, as there will be more stuff to do than sticking strictly to the main story line. We are still a bit early in development to be locking down exact numbers, but we are aiming for around 20 hours for the Main chunk of the game, with of course the freedom for the player to play longer if they decide to explore and taken in the whole world.

The game will be fully open world for players to explore, with only “natural boundaries” hindering player progression. There’s also other more linear areas like caves and old ruins for players to explore.

The game is open world, so it will mostly be free roam, with only the lands natural barriers challenging the player’s progression. In saying that, there will be features such as rivers/canals/places of interest to passively guide the player along their way. there will also be areas of tightly knit content for the player to explore such as caves or old ruins.

As an RPG, Ashen isn’t really focused on stats as the developers explain. The game is more focused around a perks system, rather than worrying about XP systems.

Ashen isn’t stats-heavy at all. We have opted for a more perk style system for character progression so that each choice you make in customising your play style is grounded in story and relates to the world. So there is character levelling in a sense.

This is not to say there aren’t stats running behind the scenes…

One of the more interesting tidbits found in the AMA is the fact that Ashen will actually not include any swords. The reasoning they’ve provided for this is actually really smart when it comes to the game’s design concept.

Oh yeah, the weapons in Ashen will certainly be unique. One interesting thing is that there are no swords in the game… being such a hard thing to craft in real life, they just didnt fit the harsh world we are creating. Instead, the cultures in Ashen use clubs, spears and axes to a large degree, with many variations on these themes. So this includes things like limited use exploding staffs.

Our approach to weapons is to have players find a weapon they like the feel of. Its not so much about dps, but more about the rhythm of the animation and the form of the weapon itself.

There’s plenty more details to be found in the AMA, or you can read our feature interview with the developers which explores the team behind the game as well as the game itself. You can read that right here.

If you’re wondering if Ashen will be coming to the Xbox One Preview Program, you’re out of luck. The developers have no plans to bring Ashen to the program due to the fact  that without some of the gameplay systems in place, you won’t get the whole experience. The developers also did not mention any release date for Ashen in the AMA, so don’t expect to see it anytime before 2016.

Ashen is coming to the PC and Xbox One as a console exclusive title.

Nick Calandra
OnlySP founder and former site owner.

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