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Come Together I Moonlight Becomes You
Entering the Fray I The Best Things in Life
Video Dump I Travel Log: Perfect World International

MMORPGAMER
Issue #132 Fangs, Toons, and Tails
May 3rd, 2010

Updating

I like the fact that I have a friend or two in a few of the MMOs I play, but now I'm chatting most of the time when we're on together and not getting any of my quests done. It's probably my own lack of focus. It's easier to stand and chat than trying to fight mobs and type at the same time. But anyway, there's been some things of interest in the MMO world, besides all those expected April Fool's pranks last month.


  Come Together

If you like RuneScape, you can now purchase tickets to attend RuneFest 2010. Taking place in London, the event will allow fans of the free-to-play MMO to come together and celebrate their mutual love of the game. There will be art, cosplaying, insider and Q&A sessions, and competitions including a video making contest called The Golden Gnome Awards. Tickets for the August 28th gathering are £79.75 and available at Ticketmaster.


  Moonlight Becomes You

Oh, this makes me happy. IGG, publisher of free-to-play online games such as Voyage Century Online, GodsWar Online, and Galaxy Online, are planning to launch the supernatural MMORPG Moonlight Online. Details are sparse at the moment as no official site has been put up yet, but it seems that the races in the game will be vampires, werewolves, and humans. I'm only taking a wild stab at this, but from the descriptions on Gamasutra, I can assume that vampires will make up the mage and rogue classes, humans will be the healers and the balanced front-line fighters, and werewolves will be the heavy tank class. Again, I'm only guessing. Since it is IGG who is releasing this MMO, I can safely assume that it will be free-to-play.

Now I'm aware there are two other free-to-play MMOs that involve vampires; BiteFight, which is a browser-based MMO, and Darkenden, but they don't quite pique my interest as much as Moonlight Online is. I know they are going to try to market Moonlight Online to the Twilight fans. I can imagine playing this game and seeing hundreds of players named after characters from the books. I also have a feeling that vampire players will be disappointed when their avatars don't sparkle. Ugh, wait, they could probably give vampires glittery skin in the form of some kind of in-game shop item.


  Entering the Fray

A new MMORPG Alganon has been officially released. Available for purchase at myalganon.com and digital distribution sites like Direct2Drive and Impulse Driven for $19.95, Alganon is following Guild Wars' example in that while you do have to pay for the game itself, you don't have to worry about any subscription fees. However, there is also an optional micro-transaction system in place for buying in-game items and the like.

Derek Smart, President of Quest Online, LLC, states that as with other MMOs, the game has the standard elements of combat, exploring a massive world, and leveling up. "In Alganon, in addition to these we've added the fourth pillar to the equation; a story." There are only two races at this time, Humans and the Talrok, but new ones are expected to be added in the future. Also of interest is the families system, which allows players to group together depending on how they like to play the game. For example, if you’re mostly playing to hang out with friends and chat, you can be in the Socializer family. If you are trying to make the best character possible and collect the best gear, you would be in the Achiever family. There are five families to each race, with their own chat channel and special items called heirlooms.

Good luck to Alganon. I hope you fare well in the coming months.


  The Best Things in Life

I've been wavering on FusionFall for a while now. The premise appeals to me; I like the idea of running around the Cartoon Network universe, interacting with those well-known cartoon icons from shows like Dexter's Laboratory and Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends. I think it's the multi-verse crossover thing they got going on, which was something that drew me to Kingdom Hearts too. But I'm not too keen on the idea that while I can technically play the game for free, I know that I'm barred from leveling up past a certain point, from playing certain missions, or getting all the best, juiciest bits of the game unless I pay for some kind of premium subscription. I'm not saying they shouldn't charge money for the game, it's just this half and half system that FusionFall and other MMOs like Free Realms have going on feels like a bit of a tease.

Except now my misgivings no longer apply. As of April 19th, FusionFall is now entirely free-to-play. Everything, from levels to missions, has been unlocked for all players. I have no idea what prompted this move, but don’t be surprised if the next column's Travel Log is about FusionFall. I'm also curious to know how the Unlimited Access subscribers are taking this news. I mean, if the subscription you paid for extended past the point the game went free-to-play, are you getting your money back for those months? Or compensated in some other way? I'd like to check on that, but there doesn't seem to be any news on the official site about what steps are going to be taken, and according to the latest patch notes, the FusionFall forums have been taken down for some reason…


  Video Dump
Unseen Complications

NCsoft, developers of Aion, and Rooster Teeth, creators of Red vs. Blue have come together to make an important PSA about the dangers of using power leveling services. The lesson here is clear: if you power level, big burly men will come to your house and crack open your skull with a baseball bat.


  Travel Log: Perfect World International

In my travels through Bright Shadow (still loving it, by the way), my in-game friend mentioned he had started to play Perfect World International, and recommended that I give it a try. As I had yet to decide on a MMO to play for this segment, I figured now was as good a time as any to try it out.

I had to actually read up on the back story, since I had no clue what was going on in that department. The very first immortal God of the universe, Pan Gu, got tired of being all alone in the cosmos, so he split himself into the five elements of fire, water, metal, wood, and earth, and used these to create a new world. Then he made sentient beings from his shadow to populate the world, but they soon started fighting amongst themselves and generally making a mess of the place. Pan Gu created a floating city called Heaven's Tear and placed the few good beings in the world in it. Then he flooded the rest of the world and started over.

"The world now cleansed, Pan Gu set about creating a new world, one filled with beings who were capable of Spiritual Cultivation. He created three races that possessed the traits he most treasured in himself. The Human race was born of Pan Gu's spirit, and demonstrated morality, honor, and an unlimited imagination. The race of the Untamed, born of Pan Gu's body, embodied freedom and peace, and possessed a unique connection with the natural order of the world. And the third race, the Winged Elves, were born of Pan Gu's own blood, and exemplified beauty, grace, and purity. Between the three races, the Perfect World was created." Lastly, Pan Gu gave these new races free will and promised not to ever destroy all beings again. So it was up to them to work out any arguments and disagreements themselves. After a war broke out between the elves and the humans over Heaven's Tear, with the Untamed content to remain neutral through the whole thing, the race that was supposedly destroyed in the massive flood returned. They had become wraiths and wished to destroy everything around them. You know how that goes. So now all the races must band together to protect their world.

So I had four races to choose from, each with two classes: High Elves, with Archers and Clerics (healers), Humans, with Blademasters and Wizards, and the Untamed, with Venomancers (pet tamers) and Barbarians. There's also the newest added race called the Tideborn, undersea dwelling people with an Assassin class (rogue) and a Psychic class. I had decided from the get-go to create a Untamed Venomancer, because pet taming is not something I get to do as a class choice very often. You can only make female Venomancers, while all Barbarians are male. And since the Untamed are animal people, I might have had fun making a giant panda man Barbarian. But I stuck with my female, and besides, I can always make a new character if I want. Character creation is extremely complex; just about every one of your features can be tweaked, moved, sized up or down, and colored to your liking. The only two things I couldn't adjust was my height and my hair length. And since I was an Untamed, I had my choices between being a fox girl, a cat girl, a bunny girl, or a demon-looking girl. I choose the fox look because I liked the bushy tail, and then spent a hour seeing how good the character creator was by making my avatar look as close to my real self as possible.

Each race starts in their own specific city/area. I was dropped near The City of the Lost and have proceeded to plow through quests up until now. I feel like I've barely scratched the surface of this game. For one, there's a lot of ground to cover. I was daunted by the size of the area I was in until I could figure out how to work the map. There's a convenient feature that allows you to select a place, a NPC, or particular monster you want to find and the game automatically having you head towards it. It makes finding quest objectives that much easier. I'm also not limited to one kind of weapon. I've found I can use swords, glaives, axes, and pole-arms. I also have my choice between heavy and light armor, depending on how I want to build my character. I earned the skill to turn into a fox, which offers better defense and is just fun in general to turn into. This is my first run around though, so I'm fairly sure I'm allocating my stat points incorrectly. But the nice thing about being a Venomancer is that with a good pet at your side, soloing isn't too hard. I did manage to locate my friend in the game. He chose to be a Tideborn with some pretty sweet wings. What's cool is he can pick me up and fly around with me, whether I'm in human form or in fox form. It's quite cute. Sadly, being an Untamed, my character doesn't get wings. I learned that I can get a flying mount at some point, so it balances out in the end.

The game looks extremely nice, and besides the genie I earned (which is a little fairy type creature you can get that helps out in combat in various ways), pet taming is enjoyable. I can take pretty much any monster in the game as a pet, provided that its level is lower than mine and my taming skill succeeds. Combat is standard clicking on the enemy to attack and using hotkey skills. The environments and towns seem interesting, but I haven't gotten to see past the first area so it's hard to judge on that. A rather minor enjoyment I get is that I can jump really high, with my little fox tail flying up behind me. I actually had to do a quest where I had to jump to the top of the town gate to get to a treasure chest and then return to the quest giver within five minutes. But there are still things I have yet to get to try like imbuing, refining, crafting, and other item creation skills I can learn. I've only hit level 14, so I have still have a long way to go in exploring the game world in full. But as of now, my general opinion of the game is good. Slightly complicated, but good.



 Back to Title

Thanks for reading everybody. Later!

/not LFG,
Sarah Williams (Feed me mail!)


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