Battle Roles with Helm’s Deep – MMORPG Article



Today released a look at Helm’s Deep.  While most of the information was the same, we did find out new information on the roles in Big Battles.

Within each battle players can choose from three featured roles:

Vanguard: Hack and slash, mainly a traditional combat role. You’re in the thick of the fighting and engaging with enemies as they come over the wall.

Officer: Strategy and command, you’re issuing battle orders, healing and dealing with your troops.

It is still unknown if officers are issuing orders to other players or to NPC’s.  However, “healing and dealing with your troops” does sound like officers will be leading NPC’s around the battlefield “healing and dealing” alongside them.

Engineer: Interacting with the siege weapons in all the various ways possible, from loading and prepping them to fire, to repairing them when they break down.

This is similar to what we knew before but it is interesting that engineers will have to be “repairing them when they break down”.  Will the siege weapons break automatically after use or is it referring to enemies causing them to need repairs?

These roles aren’t like character classes, but rather occupations for the duration of the fight. Each occupation determines how you will participate, but you can try something different the next time around. Choosing to be an officer in your first play-through doesn’t mean you have to be an officer every time after that, or ever again if you don’t care for it.

As each battle progresses, there will be advancement within the occupations, and you can choose traits from any of the three skill trees. So, Officers can potentially have Engineer skills, Vanguard can issue orders, etc.

So each build will have its own tree.  It is also good to know that players will not have to be locked into a tree once they pick it (ie: the crafting system).

So far, the release date is said to be “soonerish”.

Let the speculation begin!  What does “soonerish” mean?  When do you think we will see Helm’s Deep released?


  1. This kind has a Guns of Icarus Online feel to me (roles in that game are Captain, Gunner, and Engineer)…obviously with LOTRO in mind, rather than zeppelins. The possible limited cross-traitability in their abilities sounds like a nice idea, and should help make some nice builds (and will help out in a pinch in those oh-crap situations).

  2. Soonerish = Quite some time after “shortly”, but before “eventually”, a while after “in the near future”, but without a doubt “before the usual appointed time”, perhaps close to “early”, but surely long after “at once”. My guess is… as soon as the info leaks out.

  3. Odewulf /

    We have a date, and we’re probably going to tell you what that date is…soon!

    From ‘A Brief History of Time According to Sapience’ mirrored

  4. Kaleigh Starshine /

    Some of the wording here is very confusing to me [as most things are, not much of a surprise there! :)]

    “As each battle progresses, there will be advancement within the occupations, and you can choose traits from any of the three skill trees.”

    – this would seem to indicate that we are choosing traits on the fly, as the battle is happening, doesn’t it? Otherwise it would say something like, “After each battle is completed…” or somesuch.

    “These roles aren’t like character classes, but rather occupations ***for the duration of the fight***.”

    – again, the wording here seems to indicate a temporary thing, rather than something progressive.

    Are their skill trees that we progress in battle after battle, gaining more ‘points’, or whatever the currency may be called, to spend in them? Is there any sort of lasting or progressive aspect to the system itself, or is any progress merely measured in the accumulation of the rewards given?

    I think it was said before that two of the three roles would be non-combative, yes? That seems to be the case here, though the wording about the Officer leaves whether they might actively participate in combat unclear.

    In any case, having gone to all the trouble to rework the classes and give them a new trait system and all, the fact that Epic Battles will be the only new end-game content, and only a third of its focus will be using the new class system, is quite remarkable.

    My main concern right now is, say you have a group of 6, or 12. Will you be able to get all the rewards possible if all 6 or all 12 wanted to be in the Vanguard?

    In other words, will some be ‘forced’ to perform a certain number of those 3 roles, like 4 of each, in order to be able to succeed in the battle and earn the most achievements, or what have you? Will they make the possible achievements that are earnable based on the chosen roles of the players, or must the players choose roles to better succeed at earning the rewards.

    I hope it is not the latter. Unless they put in the same amount of time and effort into the Officer and the Engineer roles as the classes, in order to make them that compelling, I cannot imagine many wanting to perform those roles over the Vanguard role in the long term.

    I know, I know…we don’t really know anything 🙂 We will have to wait and see 🙂

    • I thought the same thing when I read “as the battle progresses”. I would be surprised though if the rewards only last that one battle. I hope there are more permanent character advancement systems than that. I imagine to do well you will have to use everything to the best ability which likely means you always need Engineers and Officers.

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