Seatribe’s creative director, Björn Johannessen, has said the team decided to add permadeath to its upcoming free-to-play MMORPG, Salem, because for one, it “enforces a subtle form of roleplaying.”
Speaking with Massively, Johannessen said permadeath allows for the player to make more of an investment in the character created, instead of tossing its life away on “random acts of griefing” and expecting the character to respawn.
“Permadeath prevents griefing more than anything else,” he said, adding that its implementation is similar to that of the firm’s Haven & Hearth’s. Characters in Salem can be summoned and killed if a serious crime has been committed – even when the player is offline.
“When you commit a serious-enough crime (e.g., murder, theft, vandalism), you leave a little clue behind that other players can use to track your homestead,” he explained. “If they reach the homestead, the clue can then be used to summon you (i.e., the offending character) into the game for some dispensing of justice.
“Basically you shouldn’t be running around killing people unless you can protect yourself.”
Salem is set in New England during the 17 century, and similar to the time frame, the game will be full of alchemy, folklore styled creatures and the prerequisite witches and crafting.
Johannessen said it shouldn’t be “too long” before the game goes into open beta.