Seven Knights 2 is a rich, vibrant RPG, with a massive world, fresh real-time combat, and an enveloping story that has already pulled us in for many hours. The game is populated with heaps of lively characters, interwoven stories, and detailed lore that does justice to its much-loved predecessor, Seven Knights. As such, it’s earned its spot on our list of the best mobile games of the year 2021.
Naturally, we were very excited to secure an interview with Seven Knights 2 producer and game director Cho Sungo, allowing us to ask him some of our most pressing questions about the game. So, if you’re curious about the inspiration behind the Seven Knights 2 characters, world, and story, or you’re hoping to get a peek at what the future holds for the Daybreak Mercenaries, you’re in the right place.
If you want to see our first impressions of the game, you can head over to our Seven Knights 2 preview. We also have some handy Seven Knights 2 codes to start you off on your journey, and a super in-depth Seven Knights 2 tier list that takes a closer look at all of the characters and their roles.
Now let’s get into it, with our Seven Knights 2 interview.
Pocket Tactics: Seven Knights 2 features deep lore and many detailed stories. What were your inspirations, cultural and otherwise, when building the world of Seven Knights?
Cho Sungo – We wanted to create a story that can feel like looking into the dark night sky singing of hope. One could say the world of Seven Knights is that of an apocalypse, but we wanted to tell a tale of heroes who will not give up until the very end, always holding onto hope. We wanted to convey the sense of courage of these heroes to our players.
Since the game is a sequel, the main goal was to stay true to the world of Seven Knights 1, but we were also inspired by the hero-rich worlds of MCU and the X-Men series.
The Daybreak Mercenaries are at the heart of Seven Knights 2, and consist of some pretty unique individuals. Tell us more about how this group came to be, and what inspired the vastly different characters of Lene, Kade, Cheng Chen, and Lukey?
CS – Let me tell you about the setting of Seven Knights 2. The heroes of the past have grown old and retired, or they have disappeared from the world. Eileene sensed a new danger approaching and decided that the Seven Knights would be needed again. In order to overcome the dangers of the future, Eileene decides to train the younger generation. Through Eileene’s decision, Lene became the focal point of the beginning of the Daybreak Mercenaries.
Lene continues to grow and is becoming a more complete character. What motivated Lene at first was her desire to avenge her mother, but she begins to learn about her role in saving the world, becoming more mature as time goes on.
With Lene at the centre, the Daybreak Mercenaries band together. They get into petty arguments at first, but Cheng Chen looks after the young and hurt Lene like an older sister. She helps Lene and is the mediator of the group.
Kade is a character that has been discriminated against for his mixed-race Beastkin heritage. He may look tough, but he is a deeply sensitive individual with many scars in his heart. The former captain of the Daybreak Mercenaries, Eileene, took him in and made him what he is today. Under Eileene’s guidance, Kade became a strong and dependable individual. He always sides with those who are discriminated against.
Lukey is an orphan who was abandoned as a child, and likewise, Eileene took him in and became a great individual. He may seem a bit unprofessional and lazy, but he has a good heart with a sense of justice.
These four are the heroes that will represent the next generation. The story of their friendship and growth makes them a remarkable team.
Seven Knights 2 has a huge variety of characters, with not only widely ranging abilities, but detailed backstories. How did you come up with so many unique tales that are able to resonate with so many players?
CS – We have a team that manages and expands on the Seven Knights IP. In order to maintain and further expand the IP, we needed professional writers, so we formed a team of game scenario writers to handle that.
They know each and every detail of the world of Seven Knights, and they also go through extensive research to discover what character designs will be well-liked by players. We began to create new stories with the team’s collective intelligence, later onboarding quest designers, level designers, art teams, and others. This allowed us to create fuller and more appealing story experiences.
Do you have a favourite character? Are there any that the team enjoyed working on and developing more than others?
CS – That would be the Legendary+ Knight of Light Rudy. He is a hero that represents the original Seven Knights, and he is also one of the main characters of Season 1. Rudy had been spending his life in pain and solitude due to the belief that his creed brought the world to ruin. On top of that, he lost his left arm in his last fight, so he isn’t the powerful knight he used to be. He meets Lene and Phiné, then realises that there are still people who need his help. He rises again to fulfil his duty as the Knight of Light, and developing his character’s redemption was very fun and immersive.
We also wondered how a has-been can rise to glory as the Knight of Light again. Rudy originally used a sword and shield, but since he lost his left arm, we needed something to replace the shield. So we made him use one less wing and designed it into a shield instead. These thought processes led us to the development of Knight of Light Rudy. We are really pleased with how he turned out as a hero.
How did you build on the success of Seven Knights to bring a fresh, improved sequel that appeals to both fans and new players alike?
CS – We tried our best to make the existing characters taller and more lifelike while maintaining their unique concepts to please the fans. The game is completely different, but we brought back the familiar content and systems. We also revamped the skills of Seven Knights, a staple of the game, in order to provide a more entertaining experience.
We developed the story so that new players who are not familiar with the original Seven Knights can still understand everything. We put in a lot of effort to create a story of the highest quality and a complete group combat system that can stand out in the mobile gaming market.
Seven Knights 2 has an immersive and vivid open fantasy world, comparable with huge console and PC games. How did you bring such a large scale game to mobile?
CS – When we first started this project, our goal was to create a mobile game with a great story as the main focus, not the other way around. As I’ve mentioned before, the team that manages the Seven Knights IP has created a whole outline of fun Seven Knights 2 scenarios based on the many stories prepared by the team. We devoted a lot of our time to researching ways that can make the game’s quests fun like console games, not to mention the best ways to tell each story. We developed our cutscenes with highly experienced visual artists and included voice acting to tell the story more effectively. We are serious about storytelling.
What challenges did you face during the development of Seven Knights 2, and how did you overcome them?
CS – It was a gruelling process of trial and error, but the biggest thing was the switch from the original game’s turn-based combat to real-time. Considering the most appropriate angles, player awareness, and balancing, we discussed at great lengths regarding the group size. In the end, we decided on the four-person group combat system.
Regarding the previously mentioned skill effects (a Seven Knights staple), we also went through an R&D process to find a way to translate them over to Seven Knights 2. Since the original game was turn-based, it had no issues with long skill effects. However, Seven Knights 2’s real-time gameplay means a long effect can result in dying from damage or be rendered useless by higher DPS from basic attacks, taking the fun away from combat gameplay. We made our normal skills short and sweet. The original Ultimate skills lasted up to ten seconds, but now they are around two-three seconds.
What does the future hold for Seven Knights 2? Are there any events, new characters, or updates on the horizon?
CS – We are currently preparing the Carnival Event, where new missions are unlocked daily for a limited time. Clearing missions provides rewards. Also, we plan to release a new story every month, and a new four & eight-Player Raid is coming too. For guilds, we have a guild upgrade system and raids coming soon, so please look forward to it. The heroes that can be used in each raid and arena will be updated every two weeks.
And that’s it for our Seven Knights 2 interview with Cho Sungo. It’s fascinating to get a peek behind the curtain of the wonderfully detailed world that he and Netmarble have built, and to see such passion for storytelling in videogames. It looks like the future is bright for Seven Knights and story-driven RPG fans.