I’ve played very little of Trove, Trion Worlds’ voxel based MMORPG, on the PC since its release in 2015. However, since the game released on consoles (particularly the PS4 in my case) I’ve been in the game quite a bit. As I pointed out in my console preview back then, the game (and the menu upgrades that came later) just felt right with a controller in my hands chilling on the couch with a beer. Eclipse, today’s update to the title, marks the first time all versions of Trove will receive an update at the same time. I caught up with Senior Producer Rick White and Lead Artist Robin Luera to chat about the update and to take a peek at a few of the update’s larger offerings.
As we start our travels, I ask about updating the system for PC, PS4, and XBox One at the same time and ask if the team’s excited about all versions being on par now. The answer? Yes. The pain point for the dev team was catching up the console versions of the game to the PC version. Now that they are caught up on the consoles, the dev team is looking forward to each update having the same cycle, enhanced testing, and even more polish. So what changes in Eclipse?
Towers that Grow
Keeping with the whole “Shadow” and “Eclipse” themes, this update tour kicks off by talking Shadow Tower. For the uninitiated, the Shadow Tower is a bleak place in Trove where groups gather to tackle dungeon type content and large bosses to gather resources. You won’t have to jump into the tower via a portal in your Club World anymore (although you can if you wish) since the tower is now a location on your atlas (we’ll get to the Atlas in a moment) once you’ve opened it up. Shadow Tower now has a lobby for you to gather up in and group together.
Speaking of the tower, Luera and the art team have been hard at work implementing both their own team’s creations and creations from the players. The tower itself has received two new floors each with trash and new bosses. As we check out the Shadow Hydrakken boss we quickly learn that with 5 heads this boss can cover the room quickly in poisonous goop and quickly mow down players who decide to stand still for too long. Don’t think you ranged players can find respite in a corner or anything though, the entire room is game for the dangerous AoE cast. The new Darknik Dreadnought boss doesn’t pull any punches either as it swaps between being magic immune and physical attack immune while occasionally casting a room wide destruction spell sure to wipe parties that fail to find a safe space. The rewards are plentiful though since the tower has had it’s loot updated and the Darknik Dreadnought even has a chance to drop a mount version of itself, currently the largest mount in Trove.
I previously mentioned the Atlas and this update should come as a very welcome addition to anyone, like me, that hated running up a tower that the game’s camera hated to find the portal you wish to enter. This has now been replaced with a single Sun Goddess Statue that opens up the Trovian Atlas for players. Think of it as a world map with everywhere you could want to go displayed (complete with unlock/power requirements) and easily selected as needed. This INCLUDES the previously mentioned Shadow Tower. This quick interface came about, as these things often do, from an internal request to the team to “design an interface you would use if there were no rules on what you could do.” It’s a welcome addition and my camera thanks the team!
Gem it up, Baby!
While the Shadow Tower adds new challenges, Trion Worlds has seen fit to add a few new systems to help players face the new challenges. If you’ve been leveling alternate classes, right off the bat you’ll be able to benefit from those classes on your main class through the new “Sub Class” system. Like other games that use this type of system, your main class (once reaching level 10) can equip a subclass and gain certain abilities from that class. While these are passive abilities, the subclass also provides your main class with a Power Rank boost and stat boost so leveling all those other classes pays off as the stats get bigger as you progress.
Need more? Ok, how about health regen gems becoming a thing of the past (makes sense with how useless they ended up being) and a huge new system being introduced to stat up existing gems anyway you like. While touring the Gem Reforging system, not only did we spend resources to gain stat increases on certain gems, but we even had the ability to change the stat we wanted a gem to impact to a certain degree. Don’t worry though, if you swap to a different stat, you still retain any progress you earned on the previous stat in case you come back to it. Yes, this system is resource heavy and will have you farming for a while in some cases, but the payoff can be huge…and some of you may have been saving these resources since the gem reforge was leaked a bit from testing.
It still pays to start with the best gem you can possibly start with though as the costs pile up and starting with big modifiers will certainly save you on the resources needed for future gem upgrades.
Also gone the way of health regen gems is Trove’s Daily Rewards Chests as you’ve known them so far. While they still exist themselves, they are now called Boons of a Celestial Paragon and will commonly give out Bound Brilliance and dish out Dragon Coins a bit more often.
By the end of the tour, I found myself once again excited by Trove’s changes. New content is great, but new systems that make life and customization a little easier are even better. In my opinion, this update adds new content for late game players while making a few changes that make the game more accessible and easier to navigate for new players and that’s always a difficult patch balance to achieve. Trion Worlds seems to have hit it right on so far, let’s just see how the Trovians react!
My thanks to the Team at Trion for spending some time with me!