Project BBQ Has Evolved: Arad Chronicle: Kazan - Nexon Confirm Departure From MMO
We’ve been eagerly anticipating Project BBQ for years. It was announced around the same time as Blue Protocol, and where Blue Protocol went through numerous changes over the course of its development process, launching in Japan this year with a full Global release in the beginning of 2024, Project BBQ.. well, it hasn’t faired so well.
Neople, the studio behind the game released 2 several minute long trailers elaborating on the type of game it was supposed to be. A large, open-world MMORPG set within the Dungeon Fighter Online universe.
Allowing for seamless exploration and transition between regions, cities, dungeons. And then last year they confirmed that Project BBQ was – for all intents and purposes, canceled. But not in the way we had expected.
On the contrary, they had canceled Project BBQ so they could have it undergo a metamorphosis into something they were under the impression would be far more lucrative in the long-term, and thus Project AK was born.
Which we have a 1 minute trailer for – the upcoming Project AK, henceforth known as Arad Chronicle: Kazan. With the trailer, came the announcement of the title, including an entire overhaul of the core game.
So let’s take a look.
Arad Chronicle retains its world setting. Taking place within and expanding upon the larger Dungeon Fighter Online universe, this new title from Neople is confirmed to have scrapped the MMO aspects of Project BBQ and instead put a focus on the single-player experience.
When asked why this was the case, as Dungeon Fighter Online is an MMO, the upcoming Dungeon Fighter Overkill is an MMO, and Dungeon Fighter Duel is multiplayer, it seems a little unusual to make Arad Chronicle the first incarnation of a Dungeon Fighter title to not be influenced by or at least cater towards a multiplayer audience.
The devs stated that they saw a larger potential in what they explained was essentially “Elden Ring.. in the Dungeon Fighter Online world.” Yes, they’ve taken direct inspiration from Elden Ring, and have confirmed that Arad Chronicle, instead of being an open-world action MMO, would instead be a “soulslike action RPG.” That honestly isn’t bad.
Elden Ring was a great game, and while Dungeon Fighter is a great MMO, it makes sense they’re not confident a new title in the franchise would do too well in the long-term. Especially given how critical MMO players are of new games these days.
It just wouldn’t be a smart business move for the game.
Arad Chronicle is set 800 years before the events of Dungeon Fighter Online, allowing players to experience the tale of General Kazan and Archmage Ozma.
At present, Arad Chronicle is confirmed to be releasing on to console: PlayStation and XBox, however when they were hiring last year they were hiring programmers with experience in integration between XBox Live, PlayStation Network, and Steam. Which sounds as though they’re alluding to PC and console cross-platform functionality.
Honestly we need more PC/console cross-platform MMOs. Too many MMOs release cross-platform between PC and mobile, and while Arad Chronicle isn’t an MMO, if it’s a “soulslike game,” it’s probably going to have some type of multiplayer functionality.
I’m incredibly excited for Arad Chronicle. This is a beautiful looking game that could really allow the Dungeon Fighter universe to expand into areas it had never been capable of reaching.
And while Korea isn’t known for making the best MMOs, they do make some solid non-MMOs. There is no 2023 release date confirmed at present, but a 2024 test phase wouldn’t be out of the question.
Neople nor Nexon have confirmed if there will be a premium box price for the game or if it’ll be free to play, but the former is much more likely than the latter. Yet also much more difficult to monetize.