The "simple answer" to that, says Rolston, are the combat mechanics which feature the "best, coolest, fastest-paced" combat of any RPG. It was the one real area he felt RPGs lacked.
Both Kingdoms of Amalur and Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim are "Way-Too-Big, and have Way-Too-Much-to-Do" in their design, but Kingdoms "tries to take a fresh look" at the RPG.
"And what makes Reckoning differ from Skyrim? The simple answer is that Reckoning has the best, coolest, fastest-paced, most tactile and silly-exciting fantasy combat of ANY video RPG," replied Ken Rolston in an interview.
"The pace, fluid movement, tactical richness, and physical and visual theater of fantasy combat has always seemed the weakest feature of video RPGs, and Reckoning offers a fresh new answer in that department."
"There are a couple of other obvious contrasting features, like Reckoning’s more vivid, colorful art style, and easy-to-pick up, faster-paced gameplay in general." The demo for Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning is available on Xbox 360, PS3 and PC. A cross promotion exists with BioWare's Mass Effect 3 where they unlock content for each other.
"They have a lot in common. Both games are Way-Too-Big, and have Way-Too-Much-to-Do, and they both seduce you into playing for hours and hours and hours. They both have whacking big epic storylines, and elaborate faction quest lines, and boatloads of quests, and lots of characters and books, and lots of crafting and alchemy, and lots of ways to customize your character," continued the veteran. Rolston was lead designer for Morrowind and Oblivion.
"But in many large ways, and in many small ways, Reckoning tries to take a fresh look at the RPG genre, and is trying to be What RPGs Will Look Like and Feel Like in the Future Utopia."
Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning releases on Xbox 360, PS3 and PC February 7th in the US, 10th in Europe. Check out thebetween Ken Rolston and GameFront, about 'how it will change RPGs'. What's your reckoning?