Interviews

Building Iconic Lore and Interoperable Game Universes with Illuvium

In this exclusive piece for GAM3S.GG, we delved into the insights of Andrew Wall, an industry veteran and Executive Producer at Illuvium, a pioneering web3 gaming project.

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Eliza Crichton-Stuart

Head of Operations

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The world of gaming has seen its fair share of transformations over the years, from the early days of pixelated adventures to the immersive 3D worlds we explore today. But there's a new wave on the horizon, and it goes by the name of web3 gaming. Andrew Wall, the Executive Producer at Illuvium, recently shared his exclusive insights with us into the future of gaming and why he thinks Illuvium is leading the charge in this exciting journey.

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A Shift in Paradigm: The Illuvium Formula

Illuvium is a collectible NFT RPG game and auto-battler rolled into one. An open-world RPG experience in the overworld, where you mine, harvest, discover, capture, and fight over 100+ "Illuvials", deadly beasts who rule this alien world—each possessing hybrid synergies and unique abilities.

Andrew Wall, a veteran with 15 years of experience in the gaming and esports industry, has seen the gaming space evolve from its humble beginnings to a multi-billion-dollar industry. According to him, every significant shift in the gaming landscape follows a specific formula:

1. Make the Best Game Ever: The first step is to create the best version of a game genre, setting a new standard of excellence.

2. Leverage New Technological Platforms: Next, take that game and adapt it to the latest technological platform available.

3. Embrace Disruptive Business Models: Finally, adopt a new business model, even if it's considered unconventional, to deliver the game or gaming experience in a fresh way.

This formula has seen success stories like World of Warcraft, League of Legends, Supercell Games, and Fortnite. Illuvium is taking this formula and applying it to the web3 gaming landscape. 

Illuvium: A Game-Changer in Web3 Gaming

Illuvium's strength lies in its commitment to following this proven formula. It's not just another web3 game; it's a paradigm shift in the making. But what truly sets Illuvium apart is its dedication to delivering top-notch graphics and original intellectual property (IP). Andrew Wall boldly claims that Illuvium's graphics and NFTs can rival those of AAA games in the traditional web2 gaming space. This focus on visual quality and compelling IP addresses a critical issue faced by most web3 games: they often lack the aesthetics that would attract regular gamers.

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Illuvium's exceptional graphics, intricate NFTs, and well-crafted game elements are designed to captivate players and make it the top choice in the auto battler genre, potentially eclipsing existing competitors like Team Fight Tactics or DOTA 2.

Interoperability: The Real Game-Changer

While owning in-game assets as NFTs has been a hot topic in the web3 gaming community, Andrew Wall argues that gamers, in general, don't care much about ownership. What truly matters is interoperability. Illuvium recognizes this and is building a gaming universe where assets earned in one game can unlock new experiences in others.

For instance, playing Illuvium Zero, the town builder adventure game, and earning fuel on your land can be used to unlock new experiences in the overworld game. Capturing an "Illuvial" in the overworld, which gets minted as an NFT, can be taken into an entirely different game in the Illuvium universe. This seamless interoperability, where each asset plays a meaningful role across different games, is Illuvium's secret sauce.

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So ownership is what most web3 games in the space are putting out there as their unique selling point. But traditional gamers just literally don't care. So, what else can blockchain offer then? Well, Illuvium thinks that interoperability is actually the most valuable thing that blockchain can offer. In order to move us toward that "Ready Player One" interoperable game universe vision that we all have for this space, we need to first have our own video games be interoperable with each other.

Lore: A Hidden Gem

While many gamers focus on gameplay, graphics, and mechanics, Illuvium doesn't overlook the importance of lore. It's not just about storytelling; it's about the entire experience. Illuvium's lore encompasses character design, aesthetics, and the universe's appearance. Even players who aren't deeply invested in the story can appreciate the unique and captivating universe Illuvium offers.

Moreover, Illuvium plans to expand its lore into various media, including comic books and potentially a Netflix series. This multi-pronged approach to storytelling ensures that fans can immerse themselves in the lore through their preferred medium.

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I view lore as primarily being about the gameplay experience, the universe, the items, the gunplay, and the battles—this makes up around 90% of how lore is delivered. The remaining 10% to 20% includes story, character details, and the reasons behind the universe's state. We have cinematic sequences planned for our game's launch that will convey a significant part of that story. One of our characters will play a big role in telling that story. We're also exploring other mediums like comic books and even Netflix series for Illuvium's intellectual property. So, lore is crucial, but I've found that only a small minority of players care deeply about it compared to the gameplay and overall experience.

Keeping Influencers Engaged

Influencers play a vital role in the success of any game, and Illuvium understands this. Wall emphasizes that influencers are sticking around not just for views but because they believe in Illuvium's potential to transform the gaming industry. Being one of the first AAA games in the web3 space gives Illuvium an early-mover advantage that influencers find compelling.

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At this point, influencers are not sticking around for views. If you look at the overall interest in the web3, metaverse, and blockchain gaming space, it has significantly declined since 2021. It's been challenging for many projects in this space. What keeps influencers engaged with Illuvium is our unique intellectual property. Illuvium doesn't follow the typical gaming aesthetics or genres that have been overused. We've created an adult, unexpected, and highly detailed universe that's unlike anything else.

Additionally, Illuvium's unique intellectual property captures influencers' hearts, and they see it as a genuine and original addition to the gaming world. It's this combination of technology and captivating content that keeps influencers engaged and excited about Illuvium.

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The level of creativity and originality in our intellectual property has captured people's hearts. It's not a variation or copy of something seen before; it's entirely fresh. When people fall in love with a new intellectual property, it can create a strong bond. Just like Overwatch did with its unique IP, Illuvium's IP is captivating influencers and creators. They believe in what we're building because it's genuinely unique and original.

The Road Ahead for Illuvium

The future of Illuvium is focused on expanding the game's features and ecosystem. The development team plans to introduce new Illuvials, game modes, and other gameplay elements to keep the game fresh and engaging. Additionally, Illuvium plans to integrate with other blockchain projects and expand its reach to new audiences. 

In the next three to six months, Illuvium has some exciting milestones lined up. Open beta phases for Illuvium Zero and Illuvium Overworld are on the horizon. After these beta phases, Illuvium is planning for full game launches. Players can also look forward to the introduction of PvP in Illuvium Arena. This will allow players to test their skills against others and climb the leaderboards. Illuvium Beyond Wave 2 of collectibles are also in the pipeline.

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Final Thoughts

Illuvium has emerged as a pioneering force in the realm of web3 gaming. With its winning formula, marked by exceptional graphics, seamless interoperability, and captivating lore, Illuvium not only appeals to mainstream gamers but also sets the stage for the future of the gaming industry. As it progresses with upcoming beta phases and expanded offerings, Illuvium stands as a beacon of innovation, representing the exciting potential of web3 gaming on the horizon. Whether you're a casual gamer or a blockchain enthusiast, Illuvium is undeniably a project worth keeping a close eye on.

For those eager to stay updated with the projects development, you can check out their game page here

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updated:

September 27th 2023

posted:

July 24th 2023

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