Triumphant Return - Arcane Saga Review
ByDate: May 14 2013 Views:
Prius Online was a game enjoyed by many people, who were very distraught when it went down last year. However, the world of Prius has now returned as Arcane Saga! Hosted by Netmarble, it is aiming to bring back the fast-leveling gameplay and unique content of Prius Online, but even better. They recently ended a quick beta test, giving everyone with a Netmarble account free access to the game to give feedback. While the game has received mixed reactions so far, the groundwork is there and features are still being added.
When you start the game, you are given a choice between seven unique classes spread across four different races. There is just enough customization to make you stand out amongst other players, however the races and genders of each class are currently locked. Each class has the choice of two different types of weapons, though only one will be available during the extensive tutorial. The beginning of the game extends up to level 25 which, thankfully, takes only a few hours to get to. During this, you will be treated to a story specific to your race, though the option to move to a different race's starting point is still available if you want to go through with a friend.
During your adventures, you will meet your “anima”. An anima looks like a little girl and follows you, helping you in battle and purifying enemy monsters. You get the opportunity to customize the look of the anima during character creation, and further during the game with the use of the cash shop. She even possesses her own skill tree, for the purpose of better helping you. With training, she can become a vital little helper and an aid to your survival.
If you are usually worried about moving too slowly in games like this, you will not have that issue here. Arcane Saga contains a very large list of “Peros”, which are pets and mounts. You start off the game with one pero, a large golden wolf, to ride around on so you will not ever have to walk to areas on foot. You can also acquire faster, better peros over the course of the game! You will always be able to ride in style.
Of course, fighting is a large part of the game. Apart from the normal method of simply spamming skill keys, this game implements an interesting combo system. You can organize your special skills into a string of up to five attacks, plus one skill at the beginning that will trigger the start of the combo. Successfully landing your combo will activate a series of player-set buffs on a chance. This provides both an incentive and a reward for casting skills as often as possible and being well-versed on the skills available to you as well as how they work together. Work to create a solid combo, and you will soon become a master of your class.
Another aspect that makes this game stand out is the way it handles class jobs. Each class starts off with a “solo” job. As the character gets farther along into the story and gets more powerful, more jobs are unlocked. Higher jobs outside of the initial “solo job” are intended to be better and more specialized, though this system is still being developed and balanced. The intention is that when you switch play-styles, you can easily switch jobs. This is hindered by the fact that you can only change jobs once per day without cash, which seems like a strange design choice. They may remove this restriction in coming iterations of the game if the community talks about it, though. You should also keep in mind that all jobs share skill points. If you sink all of your points into a single job, the other jobs will turn out less powerful.
In case you fear that at some point the game will become boring, and then fear not. Arcane Saga comes packaged with a very extensive achievement list, along with a myriad of quests, to keep you occupied throughout your travels. If you take the time to go down the list and do the achievements, you will be rewarded with “Star Coin”, which is the cash currency. Use these to get free potions, suits, and boosters! You only pay when you want to.
Arcane Saga is still in an early phase of production, and it is up to players like you to determine whether the game will be a hit or a miss. I recommend going and getting involved in the Arcane Saga forums and voicing your opinions there. Will Arcane Saga be a shining success, or will it be a smoking ruin? How does it compare to its predecessor? Only time will tell, but so far it looks very promising.