Developer Journal: Items in 9 Dragons by Ken Johnston
Emerald Jade... rare, beautiful, translucent. The most precious material that could be found in ancient China. A perfectly crafted jade item would pit trader against trader, warrior against warrior and thief against thief... could even spark the imagination of The Imperial Emperor himself. For to own such a treasure may offer one a certain power... and makes that one a target for all those who would seize it...
This is an introduction to the type of items you will find in 9 dragons gold, the first authentic martial arts MMORPG that's coming soon to America through Acclaim Games and to Europe through Persistent Worlds.
The best way to describe the game is to visualise the world of House of Flying Daggers and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and then imagine that you are Kwai Chang Caine (aka "Grasshopper") from TV's Kung Fu series. You enter The Land (which the Korean design team has rendered in a visually breathtaking style) as a wandering vagabond, and you become immersed in the sights and sounds of ancient China. Cities, buildings, wardrobe, weapons...the game prides itself on attention to historical authenticity. You are prompted to interact with several villagers, like a blacksmith who can craft you a sword or some razor wheels, or a doctor who can heal your wounds, and they tell a little about the current situation in the Middle Kingdom, and of course about all the fabulous riches that can be found... like the bowl made of emerald jade.
Ah... the history of such an item. Of course, hardly anyone has ever seen such a rarity. You, wandering vagabond that you are, have hardly ever seen anything! Paupers such as you are nothing to begin with... but you have a wealth equal to emerald jade. You have... potential.
Shaolin, Wu-Tang Clan, Heavenly Demon, Sacred Flower, League of Beggars, or Brotherhood of Thieves... there are six starter clans you may join to find your true master and learn Kung Fu in The Land. That is, if a master from one of these clans sees in you the basic material to craft a great martial artist.
You are like the jade before it became the bowl, and your training relies on the quality of your raw material and a master's craftsmanship applied to bringing the best out of you. A true master will show you that a great martial artist is so much more than just a master of techniques and moves. For you see, not only must you learn how to craft, enhance and balance yourself and your weapons... you must also become an expert on all manner of additional items you can use to enhance your abilities and aid you on your quests.