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NCsoft aims to bridge the East-West divide with Aion

James Egan

Stereotypes and ingrained perceptions can be frustrating to deal with, but let's face it -- some stereotypes do exist for a reason, and this can certainly apply to games as much as to anything else. There have been no small amount of Asian import MMOs that have been localized poorly for the western market, and this has certainly left a bad taste in gamers' mouths. Localization is a major challenge for any developer, and there's a rather wide chasm between what makes a game popular in an Asian market like Korea and what players embrace in the west. The westward-bound MMO that many people are focusing on right now is Aion, from NCsoft.

The westernization of Aion is the subject of another solid interview at The MMO Gamer by Steven Crews, who sat down with Aion producer Brian "Xaen" Knox, the person largely responsible for NC West's localization of this title. Knox talks about what he sees as being the best aspects of both East and West in terms of game development, and how some western influences on Aion's design have actually proven to be successful in Korea. It's a fairly in-depth interview and hits on a number of Knox's ideas about how a game can begin to bridge the game culture divide between East and West, seen in the context of Aion. Check it out over at The MMO Gamer.

What's your view of Aion from what you've read and seen thus far? Do you think this title will revitalize NCsoft's presence in the western markets after the closure of Tabula Rasa (and with the impending launch of new games like Champions Online that will compete with NCsoft's current titles)?

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