Developer Iron Lore made a solid first entry in the PC game industry with the critically acclaimed fantasy action-RPG Titan Quest. Now the Greek myth themed title is getting a little larger with Titan Quest: Immortal Throne, an expansion pack that's due for release in early March from publisher THQ. FiringSquad got a chance to chat with the expansion's producer Michael Verrette to find out more about Immortal Throne.
FiringSquad: First, was Iron Lore pleased with the reactions that Titan Quest generated among gamers and critics?
Michael Verrette: Overall we were pleased with the reaction to Titan Quest from both gamers and critics. In some cases, I think people may have been too quick in drawing comparisons between Titan Quest and other Action/RPGs. Our skill system, for example, is incredibly flexible and offers a great deal of replayability and offers something unique to the field of Action/RPG games.
I also think as a new developer starting a new franchise it is a bit like being the new kid on the block. Sometimes you need to get a few titles out there and establish a fan base and a reputation. That is one of the challenges with working with a new IP versus using a licensed concept.
FiringSquad: When the time came to develop the expansion pack what were the development team's main goals?
Michael Verrette: We viewed the expansion as an extension of the original Titan Quest. Many of the features and improvements players will find in Immortal Throne were things that we simply could not squeeze into the development cycle for the first game. In fact, the team was already ramping up on Immortal Throne production within a week of going gold on the original Titan Quest so for us it has really been one long project.
Some of the other goals we had for Immortal Throne were to continue the story line and further develop the growing rift between the gods and mankind. We also wanted to provide further character development through an additional skill mastery, more equipment, raised level cap and additional quests.
FiringSquad: What can you tell us about Immortal Throne's storyline and how it relates to the original game?
Michael Verrette: The story in Immortal Throne begins right where Titan Quest leaves off. Players will find themselves seeking entrance to the underworld of Hades to stop a new army that is marching on the living. Along the way they will encounter many famous names and faces from mythology and history ranging from Achilles, Agamemnon, Chiron, Minos - the list is rather extensive.
FiringSquad: Will there be any new skills and abilities for your playable character in the expansion?
Michael Verrette: We have added a ninth skill mastery to the game in Immortal Throne which adds nine new class combinations for players to experiment with. The dream mastery was designed to be a powerful primary skill choice with enough flexibility to serve as a great secondary mastery for both caster and melee characters. Topically it is a unique and non-traditional skill family for a role playing game and it quickly turned into one of my favorite masteries in the game.
Players will also have access to scrolls which can be purchased from merchants and will grant one shot skills or bonuses to players. Additionally players will discover rare arcane formula which can be used to create a new type of equipment called artifacts. With the help of the Enchanter NPC's and the proper set of ingredients, players will be able to craft and equip these artifacts which will grant their characters powerful bonuses and unique skills.
FiringSquad: What sort of quests and locations will Immortal Throne contain?
Michael Verrette: Immortal Throne spans several levels and locales in the Mediterranean before plunging into the depths of Hades where players will journey along the river Styx, through the Plains of Judgment, the Fields of Elysium, and on to Hades Palace. All these new levels are packed with over 30 new quests.