Infiltrating SOE to get a sneak peek of The Agency

Brooke Pilley
B. Pilley|05.25.09

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Infiltrating SOE to get a sneak peek of The Agency
Eurogamer's Oli Welsh had a chance to visit SOE headquarters and chat with Hal Milton, Lead Designer of The Agency. We think it's fair to say this is the most we've heard about the spy-MMO in a long time and it has us excited about what we might find out at E3 2009.

We have known for a while that SOE was aiming to release The Agency on both the PC and PS3, but we weren't sure if they could pull it off. Apparently, development for the console is going well because Oli got a chance to watch two developers play a mission together on both platforms and says it looked pretty good. When asked about whether or not the game would use the subscription or F2P/RMT model, Hal responded by saying that they are aiming for the lowest barrier of entry for PS3 players, which probably lends itself to the latter.

The interview uncovers many details on planned methods of progression, including a mashup of reputation, influence, skill/item usage (à la Darkfall?), operatives, and XP unlocks. Operatives are one of the more difficult concepts to understand and the author explains them in an interesting way: "...operatives are loot, and hopelessly irresistible loot at at that. Pursuing and sorting an ideal roster will be akin to assembling a perfect gear set in an RPG - if your gear argued with itself, made more gear for you while you were offline, and you could equip 100 pieces at once at max level."

To learn more about the game including their plans for missions, the environment, PvP, and even gambling mini-games, check out the monster three-page interview.
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