News Review

Pagan Online is Actually Pretty Good!

Pagan Online – The Early Access ARPG

I’ve been following Pagan Online since back when it was under an NDA. I thought it looked pretty cool – especially considering the Diablo Immortal debacle that had recently taken place at the time.
So I reached out to the team behind the game and talked to a couple of the team members. They were friendly and more than willing to not only answer any questions I had but help with any issues I was having with the game.
For those of you wondering, this is not sponsored at all.
Pagan is a fast-paced hack-and-slash action RPG published by – the people behind World of Tanks, World of Warships, World of Warplanes, y’know.. all the “World of” games.
The game features – at least presently – 8 distinct heroes or characters as opposed to classes. I mean the heroes function more or less like classes would but they’re bound by their own personalities and looks.
Which means, of course, there is no character creation. There is some customization in the way of varied costumes for your heroes but otherwise.. you’re likely to be left wanting.
Upon entering the game I quickly learned that the combat style was very similar to games like Path of Exile or Diablo, which is good news since I enjoy both of them.
Naturally there are differences and those differences become abundantly more apparent as you progress further through the game especially with regards to difficulty and quantity of monsters.
As far as the combat itself, it’s possibly the most polished I’ve seen in a game of this kind.
Other than combat, story is a very prevalent part of the game. Progression, access to new areas, access to new features overall was handled via following the main story.
The story is pretty basic but basic stories have a certain.. charm to them, still. All of the Gods that once protected the world are now gone.
The world is in chaos and it’s up to you to recruit a group of like-minded individuals to assist you in combatting the darkness that has engulfed the world.
The story alone features a 50 hour long campaign to get through – and that’s without any side missions, DLC or expansion content.
The game, like most action RPGs takes place in a hub – you take quests, you recruit NPCs to populate the hub you’re in and those NPCs unlock new features.
There are plenty of features to unlock, and as of this video there are quite a few still locked due to the game being an Early Access title, but then again that’s to be expected as the game isn’t in a finished form.
I still don’t understand why we’re able to purchase unfinished games, play them while they’re broken, then get bored before they ever get fixed but what do I know.
I’m not a game developer so I don’t know anything about Early Access games.
But, I digress.
As mentioned, the game takes place in a social hub, meaning you come across a plethora of other players. The game is supposed to be playable with another person so the hub allows for you to locate other people to play with.
Unfortunately, co-op play was unavailable when I recorded this and I believe is still available currently as of this video going live.
The game itself is very linear. Where in Path of Exile or even Diablo III you’re capable of exploring the zone you’re in, in Pagan you’re limited to a few different directions you can take.
You run down a small linear pathway that is filled with hordes of monsters, reach a fork in the road, choose a direction, run down that linear pathway filled with hordes of monsters and.. rinse and repeat.
Then.. boss battle. Or, zone final fight. Which ultimately ends the zone and allows you to essentially progress forward to the next chapter of the story.
Each zone does have quite a bit of replayability with side missions becoming available in zones you’ve already cleared and new mission objectives like “killing x amount of monsters without dropping below 50% HP” or “not using x attack” requiring you go back and try to complete them.
While there isn’t much incentive to explore the areas you’re traversing, there are things like elite monsters and treasure chests locked behind timers that promote exploration. So it isn’t all bad.
When beginning the game you choose between one of three heroes.
You’re stuck with the hero you choose at the beginning but gain access to various other heroes as you collect them via “Hero Shards.”
Hero Shards are collected by a variety of means. I collected a few over the course of my journey but you require 50 per hero to unlock. That’s.. a lotta grinding. At least for some heroes as some are easily unlockable.
Each hero has their own unique abilities, their own skill trees, equipment types and playstyles and every hero is playable on the same account.
So swapping between characters or changing mains all together because you found someone you enjoy more is as easy as selecting them.
One thing I found.. limiting though was the skill trees themselves. I’m not saying more variety won’t be added in the future but right now there seems to be more or less a single build you can go.
With very little in the way of skill customization, you’re left almost with a sense that you have a negligible amount of choice on how your character is grown.
Loot management is a little.. ludicrous. See, you don’t find items or equipment like you normally would – after killing a monster or two.
Instead, each zone you go to has several “encounters”, which spawn a set of monsters to kill and only after they’re killed does loot spawn.
And boy does loot spawn. After two or three encounters your inventory is full and you’re left wondering if you should even bother picking any of the loot up ’cause most of the items are.. useless common garbage.
After each chapter I’d make it back to the quest hub completely filled with useless items and weapons to pawn off to the trader.
I’m more a fan of quality over quantity: I’d rather improved gear or increased volumes of money drop as opposed to low-quality common items and a few gold spilled out everywhere.
Think of it this way: You’re going out to a restaurant with a friend of yours. The restaurant ends up costing $150. Would you rather have 200 $1 notes or 4 $50 notes? Exactly.
Sorting through 150 $1’s would take forever. And that’s my point. There was no need for the abundance of low quality items after each group of monsters. It just made selling or trashing the items take that much longer.
But that doesn’t mean there was never anything of worth. Several times I had pretty sweet upgrades.. at least in terms of raw damage. But every piece of gear has additional stats like +strength or +fortitude.
So while you could increase the base damage of your character, you could also lower the overall stats of your character by equipping an item with inferior sub-stats.
This means you have to carefully plan every item you equip, which is a pretty interesting route to take. Especially if you’re a fan of min-maxxing in games.
For me? I love seeing my stats raise even slightly so sitting there wondering if the sub-stats would benefit me better overall than the small upgrade in base damage is my kinda thing.
Each story-related mission I went on in-game, at least during the first chapters’ missions had me meet a selection of NPCs.
As I mentioned earlier, the NPCs you recruit in-game come back to your quest hub and unlock various features like crafting, the Hero Forge, the merchant and more.
They have, like your character, their own personality and are responsible for some of the missions you go on.
It was definitely an interesting route to take – populating the quest hub with recruitable NPCs that have their own quirky personalities and stories associated with them but it adds a lot of life to an already refreshingly animated game.
Something that surprised me was that there was voice acting in-game. The entire game was voiced over in English. Every mission I took had someone narrating it.
Every feature I unlocked had the NPC associated with the feature explaining how it was used.
Every time I unlocked a new NPC they were all “whoa, hey dude, what’s up?” and it was all completely voiced.
A lot of it was actually pretty good. There were some exceptions, like the characters with strong foreign accents that you could tell were heavily forced and a little cringey but the voice acting was pretty good.
I mean I’m no professional voice actor so I have no right to complain or judge. Even though it’d be pretty cool if I were. Maybe I should try that.
One issue I found with the game, and this is a minor issue really because at the same time.. it isn’t even really that big of an issue, but it was the mobile-esque feel of the hub itself.
The Pagan team streamlined a lot of the options making them all more or less available anywhere from the hub itself.
This in part removed the need to really.. move. You could, for all intents and purposes, stand there and do everything you likely needed on the spot.
Having most of the features available from menus anywhere made it feel a little mobile-esque to me and I’ve been playing a lot of them for my mobile channel recently so it just kinda.. stood out and irked me a little.
Overall, my opinion of Pagan Online is that at its core, it’s a very entertaining game with a lot of potential.
It is a very beautiful game. Ridiculously good looking. The areas I visited, the animations of my characters and the monsters, the skill effects – everything looked so polished.
But then when you’re a publisher as large as Wargaming it’s to be expected.
The action combat is a little.. Iunno, difficult at first glance since it makes use of WASD instead of mouse clicks but it’s easy to get acclimated to after which it becomes an incredibly fun and addictive combat style.
There’s nothing quite like mowing down hundreds of enemies at once with your significant other. Makes for a great quality date night.
Questing and progression was fun. It was linear and limiting at times but replayability was very high thanks to various ways of tackling the objectives.
I expect this to be even more fun when you have to tackle objectives with another person.
Character NPCs that you meet and recruit were all fun and interesting, with some being.. a little over the top at times. But then I’m a fan of World of Warcraft, so.. yeah.
There are a lot of features in the game.. or, there are planned to be a lot of features in the game. The lack of features was very apparent and honestly, I feel as though more should have been included before the Early Access launch.
It likely would have resulted in more positive reviews on the Steam page.
Overall, for an ARPG the game was enjoyable. It turned out a lot better than I thought it was going to. I don’t traditionally play ARPGs so this was refreshing for me.
There are some things missing but for the most part, I had a lotta fun and I look forward to playing co-op with my wife when the game finally adds the feature in.

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Guardians of Ember Game Review

Alternate Title: Embergarde
Developer: Runewaker
Publisher: Runewaker, InselGames, GameForge
Type: Isometric MMORPG
Model: Free-to-play
Platform: PC
PvP: 1v1, 3v3, 5v5 Arenas
PvE: Open World Questing, Dungeons

Guardians of Ember Review – Is It Worth Playing?

I didn’t think I’d be doing another “first impressions” type video like I did with DK Online just last week but here we are – with Guardians of Ember.
Like DK Online, Guardians of Ember just released into open beta. Gameforge was kind enough to reach out to me before the open beta and live launch in an attempt to offer to sponsor a look at the game with early access – which is pretty cool.
I love getting the opportunity to play a game that’s getting ready to launch or has just recently launched as they’re normally the best times to get into them.
I didn’t know what to expect going into Guardians of Ember ’cause honestly, I didn’t do much research prior to downloading it. But I can definitely say that I was.. surprised.
The game offers 4 unique races: Humans, Elves, Dwarves, and.. lolis. There are 6 classes you can choose between upon selecting your race: Knight, Priest, Arcanist, Engineer, Ranger and Dark Knight.
I went Knight because I wanted to play tank for my wife who was going Priest.
Upon choosing my class, I was taken aback by how much customization there was for your character. Full body sliders that give you control over the entirety of your characters body, and there’s even more facial customization than there is body customization.
Combat was pretty simple: If you’ve ever played a top-down isometric MMORPG then you know what to expect.
It’s complete action combat – you can either use left-click or spacebar for normal attacks and right-click for a special attack, while mapping various skills to your keys.
Something that enhances the combat drastically is the skill system. It’s actually a pretty complex system, honestly.
You have a base selection of skills: Each time you upgrade them, they have the potential to go down a different path. As an example, my wife could take her initial heal down the damage path, turning it into a powerful DPS spell.
On the other side of the spectrum, she could take her DPS spells and turn them into powerful heals.
I had the option of turning skills into taunts or powerful AoEs… so being the tank, naturally I said “screw it” to the taunts and went full-on DPS.
My favorite skill, and what is probably my wife’s least favorite skill of mine was the ability to turn myself into a Beyblade. Whenever we fought I’d just.. Beyblade around singing along to the Beyblade theme song.
Seriously, I’d play this game just so I could spin into combat with other players screaming “LET IT RIIIIIP.” Ah, there goes my childhood.
Outside of traditional questing in the open world, quite a bit of the game takes place in dungeons. My wife loves dungeons so she had no issue with this.
There are 3 difficulty modes you can choose between, and each provides a significantly increased challenge.
All in all, I wasn’t sure what to expect out of Guardians of Ember.
I loved Diablo and Path of Exile but hated MU Legend. Thankfully, it seems as though this game is much more entertaining than the latter.
It has pretty entertaining combat, I like the fact that it’s got an open-world that I can play in alongside other players, and looks pretty good.
We only made it to level 10, but we have plans on doing one or two follow-up videos over the next couple weeks as it goes into open beta and launches officially.

Minimum System RequirementsRecommended System RequirementsMinimum System Requirements

Operating System: Windows Vista or newer
CPU: Core 2 Duo 2.4 GHz or better
Video Card: GeForce 9800 GTX+ or Radeon HD 4850
Hard Disk Space: 10 GB

Recommended System Requirements

Operating System: Windows Vista or newer
CPU: Core 2 Duo 2.4 GHz or better
Video Card: GeForce 9800 GTX+ or Radeon HD 4850
Hard Disk Space: 10 GB

The post Guardians of Ember Game Review appeared first on MMOByte: Your #1 MMO Portal – MMORPG News, Reviews, Gameplay.


DK Online Game Review

Alternate Title: Dragon Knights
Developer: RPG Factory, SG Internet
Publisher: Mansangsoft
Model: Free-to-play
Platform: PC
PvP: Castle Sieges
PvE: N/A

DK Online Review – Is It Worth Playing?

DK Online is a PvP oriented MMORPG that was re-released in March 2019. That’s pretty damn recent, and it’s done by Masangsoft as well, the team re-releasing RaiderZ. The game was originally released back in March 2012 and had over 50,000 concurrent players at its peak. That’s pretty huge!
700 is.. kinda disheartening to see then since that’s a fraction of its former glory, but oh well!
So the game has 5 races: Human, Elf, Gray Elf, Lycan, and the Diel. Unfortunately each race is actually gender locked. Instead of gender-locking classes, we have gender-locked races. Yup, races.
There are currently 4 classes in-game, the Paladin, Sorceress, Shadowmage and Warrior, with the Archer supposedly coming in the future sometime. Each race has a selection of classes made available to them, such as the Elf being the only race that can be a Sorceress.
This makes it difficult to play the race you want because let’s be real here.. my wife wanted to play the mage class of the game and was limited to only Elf. Yup, so that sucked.
Character creation though wasn’t half bad. You’re given a couple pre-determined faces, hairstyles, makeup options and facial accessories, but that’s about it.
While you’re very limited in what you can create, each race has their own unique options to choose between, and the characters actually look pretty good!
But holy shit make-up irked me. The facial accessories.. they moved whenever she blinked which made her look.. ridiculous. Absolutely ridiculous. I couldn’t deal with that so I went accessory-less.
Then I begun my journey in the world of DK Online.. Or, I thought I was about to. My game crashed after selecting my character, which was great fun.
So, I booted it back up and jumped straight back in ’cause you know what? I’m not gonna let that stop me from playing the game!
But.. nope. Crashed again.
Apparently, to play DK Online you’re required to disable your antivirus or add it as an exception, allowing the game through your antivirus protection.
The combat, which I’m sure you’re all curious of is tab-target. No action combat here, nope! The combat is actually a little rough as well, and honestly the skill system really just.. confuses me a little bit.
Like, I’m aware you can learn skills but after hours of playing, I’d learned.. 1? I think it was 1. And the game didn’t go about explaining how to learn more.
But that’s just me. My wife who played sorcerer had learned 1 or 2 though they were learned via scrolls.. which I never obtained any of. So. Iunno.
The cash shop, though, holy fuck me sideways. The Blessed DK Special Package is 70 DOLLARS. And all it does is give you, in essence, what most free to play MMOs would refer to as a “VIP membership” that lasts 30 days.
THIRTY DAYS. You have to pay $70 EVERY THIRTY DAYS to retain your VIP membership. To put this into perspective, Blade & Soul, TERA, Black Desert, Elder Scrolls Online.. so many MMORPGs have VIP memberships for around $15 per month.
So SEVENTY? Are you kidding me? What the fuck were these guys smoking and has anyone actually paid for that? ’cause the thought that people would is inane.
But I mean it’s your money, so if you wanna spend it, go right ahead. I just think it’s discouraging to know that they gate things like that behind such a large pay-wall.
Unfortunately nobody I met while running around was uh.. sociable. Or spoke English.
That was a pretty sizeable issue as well. So many Korean’s in the game – and while I have no issue with them personally, when the majority of players are Korean.. why are we playing again?
I don’t speak Korean so the language barrier was a huge issue.
The town is very alive with players. From what I could tell, the vast majority of them crowded around whatever the first town was called. New players were spawning in every other minute and.. honestly, that’s refreshing to see.
Questing seemed about what you’d expect from the game..
Well, at least for the first hour or two. After that, there was a drastic change in how long quests took as we jumped from requiring 5-10 monsters killed per quest or 3-5 items looted to 30-50 monsters killed and 30 items looted with less than a 50% drop rate..
So you can imagine how old that gets. Real fast. Judging by that, at only level 12, it’s safe to assume that the game is a Korean grinder, requiring you grind more than quest.
Which is fine – I mean there’s a niche for that, but I’ve always hated grinding the same monsters over and over, and when wandering around.. I came to the realization that everyone I saw was grinding as opposed to questing.
And while they were more than willing to party up to make things easier, after we finally completed our objectives, we’d leave and most of them would remain, continuing to grind pretty much.. indefinitely.
We partied with someone in the same area as us when we were level 13 and they were level 18. Which is insane because you get like.. 10% XP per quest completion, and 1% XP every 3 kills.
Overall, I can say.. the game is definitely not for me.
I can’t comment on whether it’s pay to win or not at this point, but that huge $70 per month investment is just.. a huge nope for me. That’s a red flag if I ever saw one.
The combat is very unrefined, especially with it releasing in 2012.
Graphically.. I mean the character models look alright, nothing compared to MMORPGs like TERA or Blade & Soul which launched in 2011 and 2012 respectively.
Ultimately, the grind turned me off, lack of explanation of in-game mechanics made it more difficult than it should’ve been, and the large majority of the playerbase being Korean really made it hard to communicate with anyone.
This is one of the few MMORPGs I would not recommend to someone looking to play something new. It looks old, it feels old, and grinding is a chore.
But hey, at the very least it’s got a more active population than Bless Online. Well, for a couple weeks, anyway.

Minimum System RequirementsRecommended System RequirementsMinimum System Requirements

Operating System: Windows XP 32 bit
CPU: Pentium 4 3.0GHz or Sempron 3000+
Video Card: GeForce 7600 GT 256MB or Mobility Radeon HD 3670
Hard Disk: 3 GB

Recommended System Requirements

Operating System: Windows 7 64 bit
CPU: Core 2 Duo E7400 2.80GHz or Athlon II X2 250
Video Card: GeForce 8800 GT or Radeon HD 5670 1GB DDR3
Hard Disk: 5 GB

The post DK Online Game Review appeared first on MMOByte: Your #1 MMO Portal – MMORPG News, Reviews, Gameplay.

Articles News Review

KurtzPel Game Review

Alternate Title: KurtzPel – BRINGER OF CHAOS
Developer: KOG Games
Publisher: KOG Games
Type: Online ARPG
Model: Free-to-play
Platform: PC
PvP: Arenas
PvE: Instances

KurtzPel Review – Is It Worth Playing?

KurtzPel, the Anime MMO we’ve been waiting for all year. From what I experienced, the game is more comparable to something like S4 League then it is something like Dragon Nest or Soul Worker.
Which is more than fine, we need more original games on the market and this is a fantastic addition to it.
So, I got in-game and was greeted by one of the best animated openings to an Anime game I’ve played yet. The quality was beautiful, like legit, if they made a KurtzPel Anime series I’d watch it. Especially with how dark the atmosphere felt.
Kinda gave me Attack on Titan feels just a little bit..
But it sets up the story quite nicely.
We’re apparently some weird, demonic spawn referred to as a “KurtzPel”. The bad guys want to murder us because.. well, we’re essentially the “chosen one” and will bring about their end.
I mean, makes sense. When you’re the dominant force in the world and your existence as you know it is threatened, naturally you’d do whatever you could to hold onto what you have.
So can they even really be considered bad guys? There’s a tough question for ya!
When beginning your journey throughout KurtzPel you’re given quite a unique way of going about your character creation. You’re prompted to fill in a simple questionnaire that determines your character’s personality and customization options.
You can freely change your personality at any time during the character creation process, and each personality type provides different hairstyles, faces, physiques, and demeanor.
I ended up on Genius, ’cause.. I mean, naturally. Wiggy ended up as Healer, my wife MrsStix ended up as Supporter.. or maybe Wiggy was Supporter and my wife was Healer.. I forget. Finally, Wiggy’s boyfriend got Advisor.
This provided an interesting group dynamic. I was the mastermind behind everything we did, Ev was able to advise me on how poor the decisions I made were, to no avail, Wiggy tried to heal through my poor decisions and my wife MrsStix supported me as best she could.
Character creation in the game though was superb. I wish the game provided the option to more freely customize your characters face but your characters are perhaps the most beautiful I’ve ever seen in an Anime MMO.
Being able to adjust their height, their weight, the actual style of their body, basic facial features like their eye style, brows, pupils and overall skin color made it possible to create something pretty unique. Especially once you reached the hairstyles.
KurtzPel actually provides players the ability to edit the front, back, side and tail-end of your hair, making it possible to heavily customize your hairstyle.
Adding on to that is the fact that you’re capable of coloring each invidual hair slot, providing even more customization.
I’m not really a fan of highlights in hair as I’m fond of things matching, but I did see a lot of people that took the time to take advantage of this.
Finally, and most importantly, you have the bust and hip size. You can make your girl hella thicc or teeny tiny. Unless you’re a guy, in which case.. sucks to be you.
There are 5 total classes in-game as of right now. Each class is referred to as a “Karma”, with the game allowing you to equip 2 simultaneously, providing the ability to swap between them mid-combat.
I opted for the Great Sword Karma, “Sword Talaimh” because I love huge swords. And I’m a melee fighter at heart.
The other 4 Karma’s are the Longbow “Dance of the Wind”, Staff “Diabolic Witch”, Gauntlet “Blazing Fist”, and finally the Dual Swords Karma that is unreleased I believe.
The combat was nice and smooth, You had your basic combos at the top right of the screen, the gameplay flowed nicely and the special effects were probably the best I’d seen in an Anime MMO.
If you want something flashy, then that’s what you get.
The game has two forms of play, PvE and PvP.
PvE has you dive into instances, like Soul Worker or Phantasy Star Online 2 and fight large bosses to progress through the story, learn more about the world you inhabit, and unlock new Karma’s, outfits and more.
Story-related quests are solo but repeatable with a group, and can honestly provide quite a challenge. Especially as a close-range melee fighter. At times I felt like a punching bag for the NPCs I was fighting.
PvP, like PvE, takes place inside small instances and pits groups against one another.
While it’s easy to get overwhelmed due to using inferior Karma’s and lacking the required skill, the PvP is exhilerating and provides an opportunity for players to test their skills against one another.
Honestly, I just wanted to play the Gauntlet Karma but from what I could tell, if you weren’t playing the Witch… then you were pretty much screwed. They absolutely destroyed me and I had regrets playing melee.
Alas, that’s the life of a melee in most games: Get kited to hell.
Every encounter is either prefaced by a cutscene or followed by a cutscene that introduces the game’s primary characters.
Some of them are actually pretty entertaining, while others are just cliche and cheesy. But that doesn’t equate to being a bad thing, it’s just.. not something I found outside of solo games.
Most MMOs or online games, even, don’t really provide much personality to their characters outside of the odd line here or there that makes you chuckle, with the exception of a few good ones like WoW, Final Fantasy XIV or Guild Wars 2 as examples.
So seeing a game like this ported over that actually has personable, relatable characters is promising for the story. And let me tell you, there was a ton of story. I spent a solid 30 or so minutes of my first 2 hours recording just story.
Thankfully I’m a huge lore buff so that was enjoyable for me.
I spoke a little on combat earlier but I wanted to elaborate on it a little more here: It can be very, very difficult.
The story missions, as I mentioned, are solo, meaning you can’t do it at least initially with friends or other players. So progressing through the story means you’re required to do it alone.
The same goes for the unlocking of Karma’s. You must complete the quests to unlock them, along with the characters associated with them by yourself.
However, once you manage to overcome those encounters, you unlock them for play in multiplayer – which is honestly where the fun comes into play.
While yes I had a lot of issue as the Greatsword Karma, actually failing one of my missions, and while that was frustrating ’cause that Ganondorf looking dick beat me senseless, tackling them again with my wife was far more satisfying.
The bosses were actually several times more powerful, had several times more HP and required a little more coordination.
Especially if one of you are getting murdered repeatedly.
Although we only tested a few bosses out, the amount of fun we had greatly increased once we could play together because playing with a friend, a loved one, you know.. is just so much more fun than playing alone.
So, at the end of the day, KurtzPel is a unique semi-MMO? MMO-lite? Mini, Massively, Multiplayer, Online? MMMO?
Iunno. Either way, it’s a very unique game that is probably the most aesthetically beautiful Anime inspired game of its kind.
I had an absolute blast in-game, and I’m glad KOG reached out to provide my wife and I beta keys to try the game out. We would’ve missed out on this otherwise, and you guys wouldn’t have been able to see how fun the game is.
Especially if you’re a fan of hub-based MMOs.

Minimum System RequirementsRecommended System RequirementsMinimum System Requirements

Operating System: Windows 7, 8, 10 (64-bit required)
CPU: Intel Core i5-3470 3.2 GHz or AMD FX-6300 3.5 GHz
Video Card: GeForce GTX 750 ti OR Radeon R7 360
Hard Disk: 15 GB or more

Recommended System Requirements

Operating System: Windows 7, 8, 10 (64-bit required)
CPU: Intel Core i5-6500 3.2 GHz or AMD Ryzen5 1500X
Video Card: GeForce GTX 1060 OR Radeon RX 570
Hard Disk: 15 GB or more

The post KurtzPel Game Review appeared first on MMOByte: Your #1 MMO Portal – MMORPG News, Reviews, Gameplay.


World of Warcraft Game Review

Alternate Title: WoW
Developer: Blizzard Entertainment
Publisher: Blizzard Entertainment
Model: Pay-to-play
Platform: PC
PvP: Arenas, Battlegrounds, Skirmishes, Open-world PvP, Island Expeditions
PvE: World Quests, Dungeons, Raids, Warfronts

World of Warcraft Review – Is It Worth Playing?

Yup, I’ve finally decided to do a video on World of Warcraft. And this is going to be a long one.
I guess, before beginning this video, allow me to.. elaborate on my credentials. I like to call myself a Warcraft fan. I played through Warcraft III, then again through The Frozen Throne.
I never played Vanilla WoW nor did I have the chance to play through Burning Crusade. Unfortunately my family was far too poor to afford WoW, let alone pay a monthly sub to something like a video game.
By the time Wrath of the Lich King came out I had a job and could therefore finally afford to delve into the magic that I had experienced throughout Warcraft III.
Back when I played, leveling was much more difficult than it is right now in Battle for Azeroth. As a Ret I couldn’t go around in Heirlooms pulling 10-12 monsters for my quest and AoEing them all dead before I took any form of substantial damage.
I recall dying underneath Dalaran to too many monsters when I was fully decked out in Wrathful PvP gear trying to chase someone down.
I remember the tedious journey to level up different weapon skills, class quests, not having my hand held throughout the questing process.
There are so many differences between Wrath of the Lich King and Battle for Azeroth that it almost feels redundant listing them here.
Suffice it to say, it was a very different game back then.
Now, ever since I bought the game I’ve had an active subscription. That’s around 11 years now, since I began back in 2008 I believe.
I have played every expansion, normally for several months per year.
I loved Wrath. It, to this day, is still my favorite WoW experience. Cataclysm changed the Warrior, which I mained, and the story of Deathwing was kind of.. lackluster compared to what I’d experienced in Wrath.
Then Mists of Pandaria hit and I was thrilled. My Warrior was back in tip-top condition, Bloodbath+Bladestorming everything with Second Wind – being an unkillable beyblade of death.
And even though Pandaria seemed very slow, or at least the questing system did, I enjoyed the light-hearted theme of the Pandaren. Granted, it was at times a little over the top but I enjoyed myself.
Then Warlords of Draenor hit and made Discipline Priests the bane of every melee’s existence, lest you play Frost DK, and even then.
The story, also, was complete filler, but the zones were beautiful, especially by WoW standards.
Then Legion released, and improved drastically on the story, the characters, and made the game look better than I ever thought possible.
Plus they allowed us to use Legendary Artifact weapons that, although grindy, were a significant improvement over the Azerite RNG system in place right now.
I have participated in every raid during every expansion, albeit on different characters over different accounts.
I have never cleared a current Mythic raid because I’ve never been dedicated enough for that. The furthest I got was I believe Heroic Siege of Orgrimmar.
But I have cleared everything else on normal as they were current content.
I’ve done my fair share of PvP: Thousands of Battlegrounds, I made it to 1900 rating in 2s, 2100 rating in 3s and I never knew enough people to participate in 5s or Rated Battlegrounds.
While I may not have been that great at PvP, I’d like to say that I was at least alright at it.
So, basically, I’ve always participated in as much of every expansion as I could. I’ve never been competitive enough to push the most difficult content but I’ve always been content having accomplished everything each expansion had to offer.
The same applies to Battle for Azeroth.
I started the expansion 2-3 months ago with my wife, Adrienne. She’s never played WoW before, so this was a completely new experience for her.
Her experience with MMOs came from Star Wars: The Old Republic, TERA, Blade and Soul, Rift and Riders of Icarus. So she was used to.. I guess, at least concerning base WoW and probably up until Mists of Pandaria.. prettier looking games.
I assured her that the game begins to look a lot better and the dungeons begin to require additional skill and mechanics the further we make it through the game.
Naturally, when I started with my wife I opted to re-roll a new character to level with her. I was also joined by my sister, Wiggy, and her boyfriend Ev.
My wife saw the Nightborne and instantly wanted to play the Allied Race. I told her that that was an impossibility due to her not having ever played in the past and Blizz gating the new Allied Races behind reputation gains.
She was gutted, as was I honestly, as the Nightborne are a beautiful race. But then again I have always mained Alliance, so.. not like I would’ve really played it either way.
She and Wiggy both settled on Draenei because they were the most aesthetically pleasing to them and the Gift of Naaru racial made sense as a PvE heal for tank and healer, which both of them went, respectively.
Leveling to 110 wasn’t too difficult.
My wife enjoys dungeons, so we made sure to run through every dungeon at least once on the way to max level.
While leveling we did notice something that had changed, however, and that was that A.) zones now scale to your level, and B.) dungeons now scale to your level as well.
Granted, both zones and dungeons have a level cap on them, allowing you to queue up or gain XP in areas until you reach the cap for the respective expansions content before moving you on to the next expansions dungeons and zones.
This was a surprise for me as I haven’t kept up-to-date with WoW-news and didn’t even know they had this planned.
Honestly I feel like this is both a good and bad move: It’s good for giving players the freedom to level how and where they want, but at the same time most players opt to go the fastest route, ignoring the vast majority of zones that you would otherwise visit.
Then came War Mode.
I love PvP, especially open-world PvP. My wife on the other hand, while leveling and learning her character she prefers to avoid being ganked by level 120 no-lifers that gank lowbies for shits and giggles.
Thus, we rolled onto Stormrage, one of the largest Alliance-dominated PvE servers.
Or, it used to be one of the largest Alliance PvE servers, until I learned that PvP and PvE servers no longer existed, instead, the two have more or less been consolidated into one with the option of turning PvP on or off.
War Mode was appealing because it increased all our XP rewards by 30%, making the leveling experience much less of a chore, especially since we leveled before Blizz rolled out their nerf to XP requirements.
Alas, I’d forgotten that max level players have nothing better to do than to fly over leveling zones and swoop in to 1-shot you then camp you until you give up and log out or forcibly respawn at a Spirit Healer. Which isn’t much better.
I know I can turn War Mode off, and we did occasionally, but I see something fundamentally wrong with the War Mode system, and that is that it forces players, players that play primarily PvE, to turn it on.
Otherwise, you won’t get increased Azerite Power, you won’t be able to do faction killing quests, one of which recently gave Alliance players an item level 400 piece for killing 25 Horde and more.
This means that in essence, if you don’t have War Mode turned on, you’ll be at a disadvantage over players that do have it turned on.
Their necklace will level faster than yours, you’ll miss out on potentially better gear… like, I know Blizz thought that removing PvP servers was a good idea, but I know a lot of people that don’t turn War Mode on, ever, other than to participate in the Against Overwhelming Odds quest and Call to Arms quests each week.
Then they sit there, repeatedly getting killed, participating in content that they never would have had to in the past, merely to attempt to remain competitive.
Talking about remaining competitive, what were Blizz thinking with the Azerite armor system?
The Artifact weapon could be frustrating; not the talents you’d get on your weapon, no. Those were fine. Leveling your artifact weapon was a huge chore.
So what did they do? They introduced the ability to grind out and level your Azerite necklace in the same way as the Artifact weapon, and instead of giving you the talents you’d been working hard towards… you’re given RNG crap that is worse than what you had.
Like, my wife, as an example, had an Azerite head piece that had Enduring Luminescence, Blessed Portents and Resounding Protection. That’s almost as good as you can get as as Discipline Priest from what I can tell.
Then she got a piece 15 item levels higher that gave her Depth of the Shadows, Woundbinder and Vampiric Speed… like are you for real? I had the same exact thing happen on my Fury Warrior, repeatedly getting Gemhide on my gear.
Gemhide. Because I need that bonus avoidance as a Fury Warrior in PvE and PvP when I’m not taking damage.
Speaking of which, PvP gear… I know Legion removed the traditional PvP gearing system that we’d used up until that point.
Entering battlegrounds and earning Honor to purchase Honor gear and entering Arenas to earn Conquest Points for your Conquest gear.
But that system… allowing players to purchase the pieces they wanted, that was part of what made PvP worth continuing.
The system in Battle for Azeroth? You earn 20-30 conquest per Arena and upon reaching your weekly cap, are given the item listed.. which could be much worse, or not even for your spec.
Or at least you were until one of the most recent patches. Now we’re at least given the option to choose between a small selection of same-slot items.
Gone are the days where you could work towards the piece you were missing. Now, we’re all given a pre-determined piece of gear with the chance of obtaining additional pieces from winning matches.
That’s just… no. That’s a terrible system. I don’t want a pre-determined selection of gear pieces that I have no control over. I want to be able to purchase the pieces I want.
I recall when I used to do raids and had a slot with a particularly bad item level gear piece on it.
I could do some Arena and replace it with a conquest piece that is much higher than anything I’d likely get for a while, upping my overall DPS and making me that much more useful to my group.
There are just so many things wrong with the new PvP gearing system right now, but I’ll leave that there as I don’t want it to come off ranty.
PvP on the other hand… well, with War Mode came a plethora of issues.
As an Alliance player on a server with a population larger than most you’d expect there to be a decent representation of your faction out and about in the open world.
However, at least on Stormrage, regardless of where you go, regardless of what “shard” you end up on, regardless of when you play… there are always ridiculously large groups of Horde going around ganking Alliance players.
Now I’m not saying that this is the case for every server, as I’ve read reports of Horde being outnumbered on Horde servers as well, but what this shows is a large imbalance in the PvP population.
An imbalance that Blizz thinks they can fix by introducing something like the Against Overwhelming Odds quest that gave Alliance players an item level 400 piece and not Horde.
An imbalance that Blizz thinks they can fix by giving Alliance players a larger bonus from War Mode.
Seriously, doing Tortollan World Quests is probably one of the worst things in the game. If the Alliance aren’t camping the area with 200 people, the Horde are.
Yes, it makes for some open-world PvP but let’s be real here… 200 people ganking a few people of the opposite faction while they try and do their quest isn’t really what I envision open-world PvP to be.
I remember fighting over spawns of monsters. Repelling Horde that would come to our lowbie zones and terrorize our lowbies trying to level.
PvP now is just zerg after zerg of the dominating side at that moment. Most the Horde I saw by themselves in the open world wouldn’t even look twice at me. Same with the Alliance if they saw a Horde.
Nobody cares about fighting one another, everyone seems to just want to do their shit then get out.
I’m not going to say PvP in WoW is dead, but I will say that it’s in a pretty stale state.
Gearing in Battle for Azeroth is… unique. I can’t say I dislike the new way of gearing myself but I can see how it could be cause for concern for a lot of players.
We have so many ways of gearing now: World Quests, World Bosses, Daily Emissaries, Faction Incursions, Warfronts, Warfront Rares, Normal, Heroic, Mythic and Mythic+ Dungeons, Raids, Battlegrounds, Arenas, and naturally, questing itself.
I’m currently item level 394 on my main and my wife is item level 399. We have yet to push past Heroic Uldir and we’re currently getting ready to move into Heroic Dazar’alor but the rewards we get from both of them… are still inferior to the gear we have.
This is where I find potential fault: Raiding has traditionally been the way players go about getting the highest tier of gear in the game. In every game. But with the introduction of Mythic+ dungeons, raiding seems all but obselete.
The furthest I’ve made it was through a Mythic+12 Atal’Dazar. I’m not good enough to push any higher than that right now but nevertheless I managed to get various item level 400 pieces and 410 pieces from my weekly chest.
So if I’m capable of running Mythic+10’s that reward me item level 400-425 gear if they titanforge, and Heroic Dazar’alor gives me item level 400 gear… why would I run it? Hell, Mythic Dazar’alor only provides item level 415 gear.
That is the most difficult current-content there is, and I can all but ignore it in favor of Mythic+ dungeons that are much easier.
So while I do enjoy being able to gear myself competitively via dungeons, I do feel at the same time that it kinda removes the importance of Mythic raiding.
I leveled my Havoc Demon Hunter and Survival Hunter up to 120 and by the end of the week, they were both item level 370. By week two, they’re both sitting at item level 385-390.
This is through Mythic+ dungeons, Emissary quests and World Bosses.
Give it another month and they’ll likely both be upwards of item level 400 without ever having stepped into a raid.
Speaking of raids, they are normally heavily driven by story. Battle for Azeroth’s story has a lot of people finding issue with it.
Players are comparing the expansion itself to Warlords of Draenor, Blizz’s largest flop in terms of playerbase numbers and they’re crowning Sylvanas the new Garrosh: A leader that just a few years ago would’ve never enacted what she has this expansion.
Someone that would’ve been disgusted had someone attempt to do what she has currently done.
Now for me personally, I’m loving the focus on Jaina, Sylvanas and Talanji. And Bwomsandi is a truly fascinating character that I can’t wait to see get more time in the light.
However, unfortunately… that’s about it. The story revolves around Sylvanas being a bitch, using the Horde as pawns, the Alliance attacking Talanji and her people, going to war and… well as of right now, just fighting one another.
The story is fairly basic, there isn’t really all that much going on and a lot of people are of the opinion that the writers have no idea what they’re doing, with both the story and the characters.
To me, World of Warcraft was a second life.
I used to log in for hours every day. I felt like if I didn’t, I’d end up missing something big.
I spent countless hours helping other players gear via dungeons, battlegrounds, grinding gold, faction reputation, exploring, fighting Horde out in the open world, attempting and failing to climb the Arena ladder and just… enjoying myself.
However after only a couple months, I’m at a point where I log in to WoW, stand there for a few minutes and wonder what I should do. My wife is still having a blast doing raids but I already finished it.
So now what? Hit item level 400? Hit item level 410? Continue repeating the same World Quests, the same Emissary quests, the same Faction Incursions?
I dunno. World of Warcraft is a good game. Battle for Azeroth was a fun expansion… initially. But as you continue, after a few weeks you just kinda… have nothing left to do.
And with how little effort Blizz has been putting into this expansion, it’s a wonder why I’m still subscribed.
I don’t dislike this expansion, I just don’t have anything to do this expansion. That is gearing 3 separate characters. I can’t imagine how bad the monotony must be for players with only 1.
So in WoW’s current state, would I recommend people play it? I would. If you begin from level 1, you’ll likely get a solid month or two out of the game before running out of things to do.
Whether or not you can find things to retain your attention remains to be seen but nevertheless WoW is a good game. But like Warlords of Draenor, it’s just headed in the wrong direction right now.
It is definitely possible to fix the game like they did with Legion, and with WoW: Classic around the corner, they could potentially have more players than ever before.
I wouldn’t give up on WoW yet, nor would I recommend people not play the game in its current form. Things need fixed, yes. But is the entire game bad? Definitely not.
Should you play WoW? Yes. Should you come back if you played Battle for Azeroth at the beginning of the expansion? Probably not.
I truly hope that someone at Blizz watches this and takes a little away from it. WoW has always been my game, and even though I won’t cancel my sub… I’m not enjoying the game right now.
So until the game is fixed, whether that’s with the next large patch or the next expansion all together… see you all in Final Fantasy XIV.

Minimum System RequirementsRecommended System RequirementsMinimum System Requirements

Operating System: Windows XP / 7 / 8 / 10
CPU: Core 2 Duo E6600 / AMD Phenom X3 8750
Video Card: GeForce 8800 GT / Radeon HD 4850 / Intel HD 3000+
RAM: 2 GB (1 GB for Windows XP users)
Hard Disk Space: 35 GB

Recommended System Requirements

Operating System: Windows XP / 7 / 8 / 10
CPU: Core i5 2400 / AMD FX 4100+
Video Card: GeForce GTX 470 / Radeon HD 5870
Hard Disk Space: 35 GB

The post World of Warcraft Game Review appeared first on MMOByte: Your #1 MMO Portal – MMORPG News, Reviews, Gameplay.


Return of Warrior Game Review

Alternate Title: Risk Your Life
Developer: Youxiland Digital
Publisher: Youxiland Digital
Model: Free-to-play
Platform: PC
PvP: Open World PvP
PvE: Monster Hunting Quests

Return of Warrior Review – Is It Worth Playing?

I know, I know. This is an interesting looking one.
I was a little on the fence with regards to accepting this when I was approached to do a video on it as well because we’re so used to flashy, breathtaking graphics in this day and age that when something looks less than what we would expect, we automatically jump to the conclusion that it must inherently be bad.
Return of Warrior just launched into open beta on January 10th and naturally, when any MMO launches I feel an innate need to jump right in and see what it’s like.
Originally, the game released way back in 2004 under the title “Risk Your Life” – It was, and still is a 3D action MMORPG that, in all honesty.. plays surprisingly well.
Yes, Return of Warrior lacks the fast-paced action combat of something like BDO but I’m gonna be real with you all here… the game’s action combat is better than the vast majority of MMO combat systems from the early 2000s.
There are two races in Return of Warrior: Generic Humans and Cat people also known as the Ak’Kan. I wanted to go as generic as I possibly could so I opted to go for a.. gelled back, heroic looking blonde knight- not at all reminiscent of Jaime Lannister.
I turned out looking pretty awesome. Well, except for that hair. I wouldn’t expect them to have the product to achieve such a marvel in that day and age.
There are two different modes employed in-game: Mouse mode which offers players the ability to point-and-click to move and cycle through monsters using your mouse to fight.
Then you have Keyboard mode, which offers a faster, non-targeted combat mode allowing for you to AoE and mow down enemies without the need to have a target.
The latter mode can admittedly lead to a variety of awkward situations, admittedly.
The game utilizes a “stat” system that allows you to input the stats you want and craft your character how you want them.
It also uses an older inventory-style where gear actually took up more than a single slot per piece – often taking anywhere from 1 space for items, 4 for helmets, gloves and boots, 6 to 9 for armor and 6 to 12 for weapons and shields.
I’ll admit that I actually miss that system just a little bit… then I recall how bad my inventory management is.
As I mentioned earlier, the action combat allows for both the grouping of and massacring of monsters just like this.
I’ve always loved AoE classes, so knowing I can run head-first into a horde of monsters and wreck them all makes this class an instant-like for me. Even if occasionally.. I might bite off a little more than I can chew.
Speaking of classes, Return of Warrior actually offers several base classes that each diverge into additional “advanced classes” as you continue to level through the game.
This makes for a hefty sum of customization.
From what I experienced over the course of playing the open beta up until level 20, you can take quests but questing isn’t the primary way you should be leveling.
The XP gain isn’t ideal if you compare the substantial difference between grinding monsters, which often net you anywhere between 200-800 XP per kill, and quest completion that rewards roughly the same XP as a single monster kill.
Thankfully grinding isn’t an issue for me, I’ve done it many a time in older MMOs and BDO is actually completely focused on the grind so clearly players aren’t averse to having to.
I was also surprised by the large selection of monsters I came across. Every 30 seconds I’d encounter new models, not the same, recolored, renamed monsters in each new area: Fresh, new monsters ready to tear into my ass.
And that happened often. The tearing into my ass, that is, as the monsters, if more than a few levels ahead of you are quite formidable. So most encounters actually left me running for my life.
Now, I’ve touched on the combat, and I’ve noted that you shouldn’t judge the graphics at first glance because it actually looks pretty good for a game released back in 2004 – like the Lineage games.
But one thing I haven’t made note of yet is that the game is actually heavily focused around PvP. Return of Warrior has open-world PvP, meaning players are fully capable of engaging one another in unrestricted PvP.
That means while out, questing, farming, grinding or whatever it is you wanna do, you’ll have to keep an eye out for potential competition as PvP is a crucial and very prevalent part of the game.
I never got to participate in it myself unfortunately, but I’m hoping that I’ll be able to explore the game more thoroughly and bring some fun PvP content for everyone to view next time.
Anyway guys, that’s pretty much it. I had a lot of fun: Return of Warrior isn’t a flashy, breathtaking MMORPG released in 2019.
It’s an old-school MMORPG for players that enjoyed their games more difficult. Things were difficult back in the early to mid 2000s and the popularity of Lineage 2: Classic and WoW: Classic is proof old school MMORPGs can do well in this day and age.

Minimum System RequirementsRecommended System RequirementsMinimum System Requirements

Operating System: Microsoft Windows 98/2000/XP/Vista/7/8
Direct X: DirectX 8.1 or higher
CPU: Pentium 4 1.6GHz
RAM: 1GB or more
Graphics Card: NVIDIA GeForce 4MX/ATI Radeon 9500 or better
HDD: 4GB or bigger

Recommended System Requirements

Operating System: Microsoft Windows 98/2000/XP/Vista/7/8
Direct X: DirectX 8.1 or higher
CPU: Pentium 4 3.0GHz
RAM: 2GB or more
Graphics Card: NVIDIA GeForce 7600/ATI Radeon X1600 or better
HDD: 4GB or bigger

The post Return of Warrior Game Review appeared first on MMOByte: Your #1 MMO Portal – MMORPG News, Reviews, Gameplay.

Grinding Gear Games Path of Exile Review

Path of Exile Game Review

Alternate Title: PoE
Developer: Grinding Gear Games
Publisher: Grinding Gear Games
Model: Free-to-play
Platform: PC
PvP: 1v1 Duels, Capture the Flag, A free-for-all Arena, The Cut-Throat race, Tournaments
PvE: Quests, Instances

Path of Exile Review – Is It Worth Playing?

I’ve played my fair share of MMOs and MMORPGs over the last 2 years of running the MMOByte Youtube channel.
I’ve had some terrible experiences and I’ve had some very memorable ones.
Interestingly, some of the most entertaining of experiences were not even in full-fledged MMOs at all, but rather in games like Warframe and Path of Exile.
And while they can be viewed as an MMO or an MMORPG because they both definitely have very noticeable elements or traits of the genre embedded inside the core of their gameplay – the fact remains that they’re not.. really.
Path of Exile is a free to play multiplayer online action role-playing game. So it’s an MORPG. Minus the initial M that would have made it an MMO. The game was developed and published both by Grinding Gear Games and went into Open Beta in 2013.
The game grew to such acclaim and popularity since its launch that it makes most MMO look like an offline game you play with a friend or two, averaging hundreds of thousands of concurrent players every day.
To put that into perspective, MapleStory 2, in less than three months has 10,000 to 20,000 players concurrently playing on average, and that is the biggest MMORPG release of 2018.
Now, to preface this, I do want to point out that I’m not – nor do I claim to be, someone that has played the game extensively. This isn’t a review – it’s an overview of the game I experienced over the first four or five hours with my wife, MrsStix.
There might be a mistake here or there and it’s almost a guarantee that there are things missing – such as endgame, because honestly.. I never made it that far although I do hope this video does well enough to warrant continued playing of the game for follow-ups.
Now, if you’ve played a Diablo game then Path of Exile will likely feel familiar to you. The game borrows very heavily from the Diablo series, in particular, Diablo II.
The entire world, outside of encampments is completely instanced off, meaning that you won’t see players that aren’t within your immediate party anywhere outside of those small camps.
This doesn’t mean the world feels empty though. Not only can players mingle amongst one another before going out into the field, it’s also possible to form parties with other players you’re engaging with and head out on missions together. This does include a modicum of danger, however, especially when your partner.. in my case, my loving wife, is too busy off looking at shinies on the ground to come over and help me when I am in dire need of her assistance.
Yup. She was too busy spamming left-click on all the items and beckoning the undead to do her bidding to come to the assistance of her husband.. who, admittedly, is running around pantsless and shoeless. Which could have also attributed to my.. untimely demise moments earlier.
Path of Exile has 6 unique classes. The Templar, the Shadow, the Marauder, the Ranger, the Duelist, and finally, the Witch.
Each class has their own unique playstyle, from hiding in the shadows, to commanding the undead, to.. well, smacking people with large objects.
The game also offers various modes referred to as “Leagues“. Standard, Betrayal, and Hardcore Betrayal. At least they’re the Leagues available right now – after the new Betrayal expansion hit the live server.
Leagues, essentially, represent individual game worlds that your player exists and plays through. You play alongside other players in the same league as you and cannot interact with anyone outside that specific league.
You begin your journey on a beach, having seemingly just washed ashore. You subsequently watch one of your shipmates get eaten right in front of you and.. well in my case, club the.. zombie? cannibal? to death.
After which begins a lengthy tutorial that you can skip, thankfully. I believe that’s actually a new feature as when I initially tried Path of Exile two years ago there was either no skip tutorial feature, or no tutorial all together.
Path of Exile employs a very interesting gearing and inventory system, both. Each piece of gear can have its quality upgraded, and can have unique “gems” placed within them so long as the colors match the socket they’re being placed into. This, in turn, provides new skills, passives and other beneficial buffs to the player. The inventory uses a grid-system that is very limiting, but not bad. It’s very reminiscent of old-school RPGs that had limited bag-space.. which admittedly I always had difficulty with.
Because I have bad inventory management.
As I mentioned earlier in the video, encampments are instanced off areas where hordes of players group, can interact, take and complete quests, buy, sell, and trade.
The skill system in Path of Exile, though.. I’ll admit, it’s very daunting at first glance but the amount of customization it provides is almost immeasurable. My Marauder, at least to begin with, could choose between going DPS or Tank.
I had to think carefully because each route opens up its own unique path with its own unique selection of boosts and bonuses. This allows players to customize quite a personal character, though – something I wish was more common in MMOs.
The vast majority of gameplay takes place in outdoor instanced areas. The first half hour my wife and I spent navigating the beach, massacring deadly crustaceans, skeletal archers, and.. yes, on occasion, even dying to them.
Especially when you don’t take enough notice of your HP.
You get gear in the game primarily through loot-drops. You kill monsters and equippable gear drops. You can equip quite a large selection of gear, especially during the early areas of the game, and this makes for some.. well, very, very difficult choices of what to keep.
From what I could tell – and please do correct me if I’m wrong here, there was actually a lack of an official, traditional currency in-game. By that I mean the game lacks gold, coin.. anything similar to that.
You’re capable of trading scrolls, crafting materials and various other items but a lack of a solid currency struck me as very strange. It would be significantly more difficult to discern the importance of an item without a solid currency like gold.
But it seems to work for Path of Exile so who am I to judge, right?
Path of Exile actually has various PvP modes: 1v1 Duels, Capture the Flag, A free-for-all Arena, The Cut-Throat race, and Tournaments. These modes are there to cater to a variety of different likes and dislikes.
The game, although seen mostly from an isometric point of view is very beautifully detailed. I honestly didn’t expect to see such beautiful environments in a game like this – and was taken a little aback every time I got to a new zone that had a new aesthetic to it.
Admittedly, the questing system in-game wasn’t bad. I’m sure it has the traditional “kill x amount of monsters” and “fetch x amount of items” subtypes in-game but from what I could tell, outside of the main-story, all other quest-types were avoidable and optional. I mean, that doesn’t mean that “kill x amount of monsters” is a bad quest to undertake, though. Especially not when this is the kind of destruction you get to enact onto your enemies. The sheer destructive force of our two classes is.. terrifying.
There were some very cool quests we opted to do though in the first several hours of leveling. Those took us from small little hidden caves to deep dungeons inhabited by cultists, cannibals and undead.
Then there were puzzles.. one of the most enjoyable aspects of the gaming genre all together for me. Granted, they weren’t anything too difficult, at least, not at this level, but having to maneuver around traps and puzzles made for an entertaining change of pace.
My wife found it slightly more difficult than I did, running head-first into the traps a few times but.. okay, maybe I did as well.
Ultimately, I thoroughly enjoyed my first several hours in Path of Exile.
I loved having the freedom to run where I pleased, unlocking different areas, ignoring regions all together. It was a thrill you don’t often get out of MMOs these days.
Everything about Path of Exile screams quality. A quality I have definitely not gotten enough of yet. A quality I wish other games, especially MMOs adopted.
Alas I don’t think they will. So if you want that sense of quality and you don’t want to play games like Final Fantasy XIV or World of Warcraft, then you should definitely try Path of Exile out.
It’s tiers above your normal MMO and you likely won’t regret it.
If you want to see more gameplay and want me to continue my experience through Path of Exile, let me know and I’d love to acquiesce if the demand is high enough.

Minimum System RequirementsRecommended System RequirementsMinimum System Requirements

Operating System: Windows XP / Vista / 7 / 8
CPU: Intel Pentium 4 3.0 GHz / AMD Sempron 3600+
Video Card: Nvidia Geforce 6600 GT / ATI Radeon HD 3470
Hard Disk Space: 8 GB

Recommended System Requirements

Operating System: Windows 7 / 8
CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E6600 2.4 GHz / AMD Opteron 2218 or better
Video Card: Nvidia GT 240 / ATI Radeon HD 2900 Pro or better
RAM: 2 GB or more
Hard Disk Space: 8 GB

The post Path of Exile Game Review appeared first on MMOByte: Your #1 MMO Portal – MMORPG News, Reviews, Gameplay.

Articles Review

GrandChase Game Review

GrandChase is a relatively old MMORPG that’s been around since August 2003 by KOG Studios. However as of July 3, 2018 the sequel to the original GrandChase was released called: GrandChase Dimensional Chaser, or more simply referred to by the majority of people, GrandChase. This was launched onto the Android, iOS, iPhone and iPad, with the emulator engines following soon after like Bluestacks. Thus allowing one to play this and any other iOS / Android games or MMO’s on their PC without the need of a mobile device.

GrandChase, unlike the original MMO, is a single player experience. It is also now an action, strategy hero-collector RPG as opposed to the side-scrolling action MMO GrandChase originally was. Graphically speaking, while it did lose its 3D appeal, the mobile sequel is still quite visually pleasing with the scenery and visuals one sees whilst playing being in my opinion top tier. Doubly so when taking into consideration the normal level of quality one comes across when playing through an iOS / Android game. Then the characters themselves; be it in their more simplistic sprite form during gameplay or their illustrated versions are all quite beautiful and animated well with some nice anime stylization.
Now if GrandChase sounds familiar to you than it could be due to the fact Elsword (an MMORPG also released by KOG Studios) is actually the “spiritual” successor to GrandChase even using some of the very same characters from within the game; with different names and or backstory.

Initially, GrandChase might seem like your A-typical Gacha system hero-collector many mobile games turn out to be but, this does not seem to be the case as with GrandChase. Every hero can be collected through in-game means, something not truly prevalent in most iOS and Android games due to the sheer desire to make money. From daily login bonuses, gaining achievements, completing story missions, participating in the tower rushes, there’s many ways to tackle this game, with or without the Gacha system.
As mentioned above, GrandChase is a hero-collector and with it being as such, there are a lot of differing characters to collect, each one having their own unique abilities, passives and gameplay styles. However each class whilst being unique do fall under a specific “class” category. Warrior, Mage, Ranger, Tank, etc. These classes can be leveled up individually thus affecting every character under that specific class. This does not mean however one cannot level up said favorite characters or heroes. Each character can be upgraded, boosting their stats by sacrificing minions or monsters gathered from playing through the battle levels. Once used they will either succeed in leveling your character or fail causing no effect. After enough level’s have been gained through this system one can in essence evolve their character, boosting their stats further, changing their look and even, depending on the upgrade, unlocking new skills. Prestige and Awakening’s are also available to those who have evolved enough allowing you to go even further beyond. Gear may also be applied to your characters to help increase their defense or attack power independently of their actual stats, gear can be rewarded randomly via participating in battle, keep in mind that however heroes by default have no gear so it can be difficult gearing every character, especially when they all have
class specific gear sets or weapons.

Besides collecting and upgrading ones characters, you will be participating in instanced battles after deciding your destination from the menu screen. Said areas can vary from continuing with the story, revisiting older areas to grind, PvP battles as you vs against similar skilled players, “Trial Tower”, a place to test your party’s abilities in combat with you fighting waves of monsters. If that wasn’t enough then there is also things like, “Daily Defense” missions, “Dimensional Bosses” battles, a Heroes Tower to conquer and lastly the Wizards Labyrinth. However these aren’t inherently unlocked, you must first continue enough through the actual games story content. Progressing through will not only unlock these missions but explain a little more of what GrandChase is all about.
This leads me to the story aspect of GrandChase, which has cut-scenes, in game scenes, and manga like stills to explain all that goes on. Which is a nice change of pace as most iOS / Android games I’ve typically played especially hero-collectors have minimal story to tell, if any at all.
Lastly I’d like to mention the combat itself found within GrandChase, combat typically being an important if not crucial part of any game be it MMO or not. The combat is on the more strategic style of action based combat, with you being able to slow time whilst placing your skills down. This is quite helpful as at times monsters can horde your characters leaving little time to accurately place your abilities.
This is generally GrandChase, it’s a new hero-collector, action RPG. It’s better than most others I’ve played thus far and definitely something I’ll take a look at more in the future. It’s just a shame you have to play it on a small screen. Luckily I typically play / record these games on emulators like Bluestacks making the gameplay and general enjoyment of my game time more thrilling due to it being playable on my PC with configurable keybindings.

Is The Mobile Release Of GrandChase Worth Your Time?

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