DeNA is working with Wizards of the Coast to bring a new role-playing game based on Dungeons & Dragons to iOS and Android.
Dungeons & Dragons: Arena of War is a battle RPG that has players picking their legendary characters to take on quests solo or online with other gamers. It uses the Forgotten Realms setting as a backdrop, and it should look familiar to D&D fans. Developer DeNA Santiago is combining the classic Dungeons & Dragons rule set with modern mechanics like massive in-game events and multiplayer competitions.
Fans can sign up now to pre-register for the games Android and iOS release at DNDArenaofwar.com, which will get players access to a rare power in the free-to-play title. DeNA expects to release the game this summer.
“Arena of War is a free-to-play, turn-based battle RPG,” DeNA Santiago head developer Tiburcio De la Carcova told GamesBeat. “It has a very strong social component. You can play and interact with your friends.”
De la Carcova explained that the team is making every effort to optimize the playing experience for mobile devices. This is a fully 3D adventure game, so DeNA wants it to appeal to real gamers. At the same time, it doesn’t want to frustrate players with difficult or unfriendly controls.
“We didn’t try to replicate the PC experience,” said De la Carcova. “We made it a unique experience for mobile devices, and we think we came up with a real novel way to play.”
That means a lot of taping, swiping, and other finger gestures to control the on-screen action.
Despite the new controls, De la Carcova wants to bring the classic feeling of D&D to mobile. He is designing the game to lower the barrier of entry to the beloved series.
“I don’t think there is a D&D game in the mobile arena that captures the classic elements,” he said. “And this one isn’t just about the classic D&D rules — it is also about adapting those elements for mobile.”
This is a free-to-play game, but that doesn’t necessarily mean players will start with under-powered characters. Gamers can choose from 16 classes, but DeNA plans to expand that in the future.
After that, it’s all about doing quests with a party of other characters. The A.I. can control those roles, or players can team up with their friends online.