August 31st Interview by Korean iNews24 with Kim Sang-young

Lead producer Kim Sang-young, designer Nam Chang-gi “Thank you for your great interest”

[iNews 24 Reporter Moon Young-soo]
Pearl Abyss’ new game ‘DokeV’, famous for ‘Black Desert’, is a game that has emerged as the most talked-about game in 2021. The trailer video released at Gamescom 2021, Europe’s largest game exhibition, recently closed, is about to reach 7 million views in five days.Pearl Abyss held an online Gamescom 2021 media briefing on the 31st and introduced detailed plans and future directions for DokeV, which is currently under development. The event was attended by lead producer Kim Sang-young and game designer Nam Chang-ki.Producer Kim Sang-young said, “I didn’t think that the interest in DokeV would be this much,” and “I will repay you with a better game.” Designer Nam Chang-ki also expressed his gratitude, saying, “Thanks to the great interest, the development team also gained strength.”
The following is the full text of the Q&A held today. 

(From left) Game designer Nam Chang-gi, lead producer Kim Sang-young, and MC Seo Han-gyeol. [Photo = Pearl Abyss]

About genre and direction

“(Kim Sang-young) DokeV  was initially developed as an MMO, but now it has been changed to an open world action adventure. I thought a lot while developing the game. I thought I’d express it, and I’m taking a direction so that I can enjoy a variety of play in a wide open world.

What is the target audience for DokeV?

“(Kim Sang-young) DokeV is a game that can be played with your family. My goal is to let parents play together with their children.”

“(Nam Chang-ki) There is no specific target. We are developing it so that everyone can enjoy it.”

You described it as an open world genre that collects dokebi(creatures), but how is the collection part structured?

“(Nam Chang-ki) Dokebi are born from people’s dreams. If you want to become a boxer too much, your unfulfilled desires will appear in your dreams if you don’t allow it or your parents do not allow you to become a boxer. This power gives rise to a boxing dokebi. As the player continues the game, this dokebi gets hints about this dokebi and, based on that, when certain conditions are met, the player can progress the story of the dokebi and become friends. There is a scene where a dokebi is caught with a vacuum cleaner, but the player saves the dokebi using a vacuum cleaner instead of catching it. It may be revealed later along with the story.”

What is DokeV’s Story about?

“(Kim Sang-young) The story of the DokeV’s world is set in the near future where AI is developed. A Company is making Android robots with AI technology. To the main character, the Company is a villain. Dokebis are able to make people’s dreams come true, and the main character has a dream and a wish, and it can be said that it is a journey to find dokebis in order to achieve it. They get to know the dokebi and fight against the Company.”

What do you focus on?

“(Kim Sang-young) If I had to choose one, it would be the content. The intrinsic fun of the game will be exploring, nurturing, collecting, etc., and we will focus on that. The metaverse is next. I think it will be fun to play. ”

What inspired DokeV?

“(Kim Sang-young) The game was a small thing at first. DokeV also had only a small piece. Kim Dae-il made a Ghostbusters Lego, and he said that he remembered some of the emotions he felt as a child. He liked those feelings and thought of making a monster collecting game. In the arcade, I like ghostbusters and monsters to give energy to catch them, so that little thing turned into a big bang and became DokeV.

At first, when I was making a game, I made it in a top view, but it was a bit flat. As I re-created it with Backview, several ideas started to come to mind. The idea is mainly to get personal experiences in everyday life. For example, there is a skateboarding in the game. It is Anyang Central Park near the company. On weekends, it is crowded and there are many skateboarders. Umbrellas also helped me a lot in game development because I remember playing with umbrellas when I was young.”

What did you have in mind?

“(Nam Chang-ki) You can share game experiences and know-how with each other, and in the process of playing the game, there will be many things to enjoy with family and friends. Playing alone does not interfere with play.”

People loved the combat and action, and thought it was also interesting.

“(Nam Chang-ki) As you already know, we wanted to give the impression that we are doing well when playing the battle based on real-time action, which we are most proud of. The controls are simple. That’s our goal. We try to make the operation as easy as possible.”

There was also a scene where they attacked with a dokebi…

“(Male Changgi) That scene is where the character uses a special move of a dokebi. Dokebis fight with the Enemy AI automatically, but uses special moves together when the player activates them. In the actual play environment, you can fight with flexible dokebis depending on your opponent. You can swap them in-and-out in the middle of combat.”

How do boss battles and normal battles develop?

“(Namchanggi) Boss battles have basic actions, but unlike normal battles, we plan to include several patterns during the boss attack. There are also puzzle elements during the attack, so you can enjoy the process of solving them together.

There is such a thing as a piece of a dream. It is a resource used by players in dokev. If you use this, it will sense that the patrol team is using a dream piece from a nearby company and fly away. They are like the sheriffs of the company, and that’s when the battle takes place.”

You can approach the map from various angles.

“(Namchanggi) Rather than playing any role, I want it to be a means to satisfy users’ romance. Wire action and flying also consume dream fragments. These skills are used in battles, but they are also used when solving puzzles. can be used.”

Worldview of DokeV?

“(Kim Sang-young)  Dokev’s world is set in the near future. The cars in the game are fully autonomous driving. Those cars are a shared platform and there are no drivers. So, it is a world where there are no traffic accidents and a world that values ​​pedestrians.”

After watching the gameplay trailer, it felt like modern Korea.

“(Kim Sang-young) We tried to bring out the Korean feel. I made DokeV in the sense that we wanted to create a world that we are familiar with. I made the background using the memories of living in Busan as a child. Hanoks in Seoul, Hongdae, etc. There are also Daldongne.”

Part of the focus on city and map design?

“(Kim Sang-young) I pursued a vertical aspect to create a space beauty. We tried to realize the space, and the beauty such as an open view and modeling.”

Where did the dokebi design come from?

“(Nam Chang-ki) I found it mainly based on folk tales. There is a phoenix bird that wears a flying hat, and he is a dark figure in Korean folk tales. There are many designs that come up with inspiration freely.

The realistically portrayed background is impressive.

“(Kim Sang-young) The area shown in the video is a large island. Although it is an island, Ulleungdo was referenced. I gave a difference in elevation from the actual Ulleungdo, and in addition to that, I also referred to Korea’s topography, in front of the company, Anyang, Pyeongchon, Pangyo, etc.”

What size is the actual game map?

“(Kim Sang-young) In the video, two villages were introduced. If you focus on these two villages, the size of the entire island is about one-tenth. I think it is fun and not boring just walking around the open world. But be careful, you may get lost.”

“(Nam Chang-ki) I looked around while riding a skateboard and using boosters. I was so robbed of development time that I couldn’t finish it all.”

How far has the development progressed?

“(Kim Sang-young) It’s too early to say when the game is being developed right now. If you look at the video in the game, all the gameplay is there already. It’s a video made by editing one scene after playing around and doing one quest.”

Cross-platform support for PC & consoles?

“(Kim Sang-young) Cross-server, cross-platform, all functions are being considered.”

Are there plans for a mobile release?

“(Kim Sang-young) Currently, we are concentrating on PC and console.”

Business model?

“(Kim Sang-young) We are still developing it, so look for a future announcement regarding this.

It stands for metaverse?

“(Nam Chang-ki) The game itself has a diverse community. We are developing it to use a lot of social motion and emoticons.

What differentiating factors from other metaverse platforms does DokeV have?

“(Nanchangki) The biggest difference is the very high level of graphic quality, and the natural NPC’s AI, interaction, and the journey of collecting goblin based on this quality.”

The server load seems to be considerable if you drag dokebi in the open world?

“(Kim Sang-young) It is a structure in which a server load does not occur even if a large number of people drag a summoned animal. It is a structure where you play as a single player and meet other users to play a multiplayer game.

Multiplayer and in-game social features?

“(Nam Chang-ki) The multiplayer function has not been considered in detail yet. It will be decided as we develop it in the future.”

How will the interactions between players be?

“(Nam Chang-ki) I try to put as many different things as possible, thinking about how I played when I was young. I’m also thinking of playing board games with other players.

“(Kim Sang-young) My main job is an animator. I want to put everything in. I want to do as many interesting situations and details that come to mind.”

Is there a big difference with the new engine?

“(Kim Sang-young) There is a huge difference. The pipeline has changed so much that it is almost unimaginable between the old game method and the current development method. From creating the background to raising the character. How to write and use polygons has made progress. There’s something he says. Don’t rest even a single pixel.”

How to collect dokebi?

“(Namchangki) There are hints all over the world. These hints can be overlooked. Once you get used to them, you will be able to meet the dokebis one by one.”