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I'm sad that PWE does not try to market more interesting bits of the game, instead of spending time with class overviews(frankly the only classes that need to have an overview are kindred vampires and bards, because those classes play a bit differently from your normal mmo stereotypes) Having been in chinese closed betas(both of them), i fount a lot of interesting things that as of now have not been mentioned or promoted (sadly):
Quests, Questing and Age/Timeline Progression:
Now the whole game lore is based around two over powered primordial gods, male Dyos and female nyos. Dyos is basically this deity who goes around the universe, creating worlds and seeding them with life. Nyos on other hand is sworn enemy of Dyos and signifies the end of times.
Basically anything Dyos creates, Nyos will want to destroy, overtake, corrupt, twist, etc.
For starters each server starts into some sort of dark age. Gray colors, meteor showers, demonic creatures wandering, everything in chaos, etc. The first thing the beginner player community has to try to do is to get attention of two Primordial Gods(Dyos and Nyos) to their world(read:server). Now in this period of dark age, a lot of features are not available and most of ingame stuff focuses on players working towards the goal of getting those two gods back to there through various stuff like quests, certain killing tasks or even outright prayers.
Once the gods take notice upon the server, the server enters into some sort of "interlude" time. Gods are going back into business, the world is still a dangerous place, etc. Think on how the bakumatsu period was in japan. Through this time all other npc gods, the sons and daughters of two primordials , are introduced and missions to them start opening up. Through those missions you learn most of the lore about the conflict between Dyos and Nyos and change the influence rate of the lower npc gods in the Pantheon. From this age, the server gains sort of "karma-meter". EACH your decision(that is how you decide to complete quests, which npc faction you help, what bad and good stuff you do) affects that meter.
From then on, every age advances through the calculation of prayer values, god variables and the value of karma meter. The amounts of various factions of monsters killed and bosses also count to that. Depending on all of that, the next age starts and the changes are made to the game world accordingly. Thanks to that, pretty much EVERY server will turn out differently, depending on the choices of community. As the ages go, various features get unlocked(for example the floating guild fortresses the guilds can take over, own,move and build in), world changes...and some of player decisions LITERALLY become the lore of that certain game server(from what I heard there are even events, quests and monsters that appear only once in the whole server). Basically a lot of the game world and lore is affected by the decisions and choices of player community and while one server might be a perfect fantasy world, you go to another and you find an eternal night full of lawless monsters, demons, earthquakes, etc.
A bit about the class gameplay
A lot of classes feel familiar: Warriors are your usual offensive melee fighters, Mages are the aoe/ranged players, assassins are all about invisibility and luck, etc.
Now for more unique ones:
Protectors - The more damage they take/absorb, the more abilities they get. For them to be effective, they have to be the ones getting the full force of attack. Their skills use the damage they receive(each amount of damage adds a bit to the special bar) and accumulate.
Bards - mostly comparable to LOTRO Minstrels. There are different tiers of skills. The first tier is basically skills that give you notes+ do some kind of effect + adds some kind of area(or not) effect to you. Higher skills require you to already have certain kinds of music notes activated for you to cast, while others have different effects depending on what kind of notes you have activates. Notes are displayed in the staves going around your character so both your allies and your enemies can know what kind of effect you have and what kind of skill you will cast. Playing against Bard the most important thing is being able to read and understand what he/she is trying to do.
Marksmen - ranged DPS class. What is interesting is that You can build up the attacks in form of bullets and then release them all at once like a machine gun. Now depending on the bullets stored, various effects are placed upon both target and yourself(for example certain kind of bullet when saved up into that machine gun sequence, turns the whole multi-attack into aoe or adds poison effect). As a marksman a lot of time you will spend pre-planning your attacks in advance and watching them play out for better or for worse. A lot of your skills also take advantage of various effects placed upon your targets by both you and your allies (for example you can "explode" the targets that are burning thanks to mage's fireballs or a skill that can "interrupt" the player who is currently casting a skill).
Vampire - a Hybrid class. Easy to play, but VERY hard to master. Most of combat depends on you having a good reaction on using your weaknesses and strengths and changing modes. Of course your healing won't be as good as Cleric's healing, your buffs could never rival the versatility of Minstrel, your ranged and melee attacks won't best best warrior or marksman attacks and so on. However the main point of vampire class is to use your versatility to match the weaknesses and strengths of the enemy. Oh and overall you are suicide terrorist in a way. As A LOT of your skills use up your own health, while some use the enemy health for your benefit. Considering you can't spam potions in FW, gameplay goes with you on your watch for your health. Overspend it and you are defeated, be too much on defensive/healing and you will be defeated too. Oh and one of the forms is a bat. And Vampires in Bat forms are good team players with marksmen(remember that bit about exploding burning enemies?).
Most of quests and tasks are associated with certain factions(most of factions are would-be playable races that never made it into the final build, thus all the assets were used to create npc factions with the possibility of making it playable latter on, so players actually influence the history of would-be-new-races).
Its usual system. You do quests for those factions, building up fame and reputation, sometimes you have to chose one faction over the other(which ties into Age progression i talked about above).
There are major factions (that is your race and gods) and there are minor. From Major factions you can buy things like mounts, special skills, etc, for fame and for advancing through their storyline.
Overall minor and major faction standing somehow also affects guilds, but don't know how or why.
- There are guild wars. And not temporary, but you can for example, set relationship with other guild to "at war", allowing the free killing between your guilds anywhere.
- Once they are unlocked(together with lore surrounding them), guilds can occupy, modify and build in Floating Fortresses. Those things can be moved through the map and their inside can be modified. You can add rooms and places with different purposes, customize how the whole thing looks, add defensive and offensive armaments, etc. Fortresses can also be used for some sort of quest(that is you can bring it to that quest), but no idea what.
- There are guild specific fashion items, mounts, weapons, skills, etc. I think you can customize the fashion with guild ornaments and so on.
- There are various inter-guild based mechanics in the game and there's even some sort of political system being planned.
Other important stuff:
- Reputation - You can buy mounts, items, skills, etc once your social standing with the certain factions is high enough. Beware tho - "kissing up" to one faction, might make you an enemy of other.
- Achievements - millions of them. Some of them will give you spec abilities, items, titles. others are just decorative. Achievements also affect the server values.
- SoulPK - Pulling off correct attacks, exploiting weaknesses of your player targets will make their soul in form of orbs fly out into the area(think the rings from Sonic). Souls affect your abilities, damage output(the default output at 0 souls is 0), special skills, etc. You NEED to move around to successfully pvp, instead of just standing around and spamming skills.
- Pets - you can catch pets, combine pets to get unique pets(think Shin Megami series of games), affect its personality by acting in various ways towards it and with it, train it, etc. Hell, you can even BREED them.
- Titles - certain titles work as a "rank" and you need them on for some npcs to respect you,etc. Certain titles give you some sort of benefit or unlock something when you wear them. some titles are purely cosmetic.
- Alignment system - I noticed that doing various decisions nets you either "evil" or "good" points. Now I don't know on how exactly does that impact the game, but there is an alignment system.
- Themed Days of the Week - Every day is different. Monday is "Fight", Tuesday is "Belief", Wednesday is "Companionship", Thursday is "Discovery", Friday is "experience", Saturday is "Fun", Sunday is "The Day of The Sun" - depending on day there are different quests, events, monsters, instances available through the world. and different every-day things give different outcomes.
- Refinery - Unlike in other PW games, upgrading items DO NOT DESTROY THEM. When failing you just try again - it does not destroy the item, it does not take away the refinery you already succeeded, etc. In a sense, the refinery works a bit differently form usual +1 +2 +3 +4 +5 bla bla, system. items change their forms, shapes, appearance and abilities through refinery. Its not just glow. You can also socket items, add runes, gems, crystals, etc into them, identify hidden features,
- fisherman is basically that - he fishes for fish or items in the sea. They also are capable of scuba-diving and mining underwater minerals, not to mention opening and reading the bottles with messages.
- Herbalist is all about gathering stuff (and specifically what to gather and what not to gather). As always there's a twist in the system with its own dynamics, dangers and benefits.
- A bit unique potion-making/Alchemist (with a twist that you can also make a totally random potions, with varying effects from getting turned into zombie to accidentally resurrecting that huge skeleton dinosaur in the city). Its also one of the most profitable professions, considering the only way to get lvl30+ potions (hp/mp or any other potion) is through this profession.
- Chef - A bit similar to alchemist. cooks stuff into various dishes with various effects on people.A good way to go too, considering player-produced goods are way to go after lvl30. Oh and you can make drinks and get drunk too.
- Geologist is all about digging for stuff and sometimes finding something that is a bit...too old and too dangerous for you...and for the world.
- Adventurer is a profession based ENTIRELY around exploring every corner of the world(and a lot of stuff is dynamic so guides won't help there a lot). Also a lot of stuff on lore needed to know to NOT get yourself into a danger. Those who enjoy the games for their backstories will LOVE this class as well as collector. The main unique feature is that Adventurer has a sort of "second sight" that allows him to see the surroundings for what they truly are and notice hidden(magically or not) stuff.
- Collector is all about collecting information, artifacts, other stuff and copying it. Now pretty much all other professions will be able to find various things that are of interest to Collectors and only Collectors will know the true worth of those things. Also can copy maps, scrolls, etc. If played correctly and professionally - one of the MOST influential professions.
- Diplomat/Socialite is a profession based all around negotiating with npcs, choosing the way you do stuff,etc. All of your choices in this stuff, including your overall capability to persuade npcs, will result in various different outcomes.
- Astronomer (LVL30+) class is all focused around watching the skies and foretelling various events(now as you know a lot of events won't give you a forewarning and only astronomers will be able to notice that stuff)
- Conjurer(LVL30+) - The only class capable of talking with or contacting NPC(and player-based) gods directly. Don't know much about this one and i doubt it was active during chinese cb.
- Runemaster/Enchanter.Capability to make "runes"(ranging from temporary to permanent ones) that you can use to enchant jewelry, certain weapons and certain kinds of objects in the world. Most of runes are classified into earth fire wind and water.
- Businessman - If running caravans, selling stuff for bigger cost than you bought them is your thing then go for it!. Also Businessmen have abilities and knowledge to predict the market patterns(as a lot of stuff in trading and selling etc is randomized and ever-changing). Good Businessman is pretty much a must for any guild that wants to make some sort of profit.
- BlackSmith/Armorsmith/Jeweller - More classic "crafting" classes. Pretty much the only source for some of the gears. Oh and here's a twist - just as the real world legends say, weapons and armors crafted by extraordinary craftsmen can get a curse, power or even a life of their own.
- Beast Tamer - Most of the creatures in the world can be trained into obedient servants. Tamer's life revolved around locating, fooling and capturing various rare(and not so rare) creatures and training them. Considering the pets in Forsaken World have more tamagotchi/pokemon-like features(pets have "personalities" that are formed through various variables from their "capture"/birth to their mature state and directly depend on how you behave with the pet) than in other mmos, this profession is VERY important and if your trained rat suddenly starts acting strange, its the best o consult a beast tamer.
A look at one of floating fortresses(please note that EVERYTHING on it is player-built and there can be even the "underground" rooms placed. everything on how the inside and outside of the floating fortress looks is customizable)
An example of non-fighting instances/quests. This one involves going through a haunted circus. While this one is quite static there are certain non-combat quests and instances that are different pretty much each time you do it
# A GRIM, ODD, ARCANE SKY
# ANY GOD, I MARK SACRED
# A MASKED CRY ADORING
# A DREAMY, SICK DRAGON