We had the honor of sitting down with Mr. Volker Boenigk, Team Aion EU Executive Product Director, during Gamescom 2012. This was a very special interview for us because we met the person that is among the most responsible people for operation of Aion in Europe. Just a few days before that Aion 3.0 launched in Europe (being several months late to its United States counterpart) and developers from Korea were just a few feet from us talking about Aion 3.5 and even Aion 4.0. We asked the European Aion community to give us their questions to ask them directly to the people running the game. We felt it was important to make that direct connection between the players and Gameforge and make their concerns heard. Aion Europen forums are known for their tough stance on how the game is run and I wanted to present those issues in a personal, one on one, interview. Who better to talk to than Mr. Volker?
Here’s a list of things discussed in Part 1 one of the interview
- Aion 3.0 launch
- Why did it take so long to launch Aion 3.0 in Europe?
- Details about the process of releasing big patches
- Do you believe that European market is treated as second grade market?
- Size of Gameforge Aion team
- Server merges/transfers?
Part 2 of the interview discussed these key points:
- Plans to deal with gold sellers and hacker
- What’s the timetable for 3.5 being released?
- Pay 2 Win. What is Gameforge’s stance on P2W items in the shop?
- Veteran rewards Phase 2, Events and future content
I would also like to take this opportunity to express my personal views on the interview and Mr. Volker. I initially did not know what to expect going into this interview. I told the PR people that I will be asking tough questions provided to me by the Aion EU community. I was not faced with any hostility, nor evasive behavior. Just an hour earlier I had an interview with people from Star Wars: The Old Republic and after that experience (which was full of evasive behavior and “politics”) spending time with Gameforge staff was very pleasant. The high point was sitting down with Mr. Volker and chatting about the operation of Aion in Europe. He seemed very open and sincere in his answers and there was not a single “hard” question he did not want to face and answer. The conclusion of the whole experience would be this; Mr. Volker and his team want to run Aion in Europe the best they can. They had a lot of problems with adapting to how the game runs and is localized, but after conquering the initial learning curve they hope to do things much quicker in the future. To the careful listener you will see that they really want Aion in Europe to succeed and they will do the best they can to keep running the game in Europe. If you have any questions about my time spent in Gameforge booth feel free to ask in the comments section bellow or discuss on the Aion EU forum.