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I am not a prolific author on MMORPG but as MageMERC have a thousand plus posts on PWI. I guess I’m writing this for any people who’ve ever played or are considering playing PWI. If you enjoy or have ever enjoyed some aspects of PWI then read on. If there is something about playing PWI that draws you back to the game, read to the end.
I will add a caveat here in that I searched on MMORPG for rules governing the discussion of private servers and I can’t find anything banning such discussion. I will also say that, in principle I don’t agree with private servers. It just doesn’t seem right to support such things, but until a month ago, I never experienced one or knew the first thing about them.
I played PWI since 2009 and it was an amazing experience. I spent a few dollars, maybe like 200-250 over a 6 year period but haven’t spent any money since about 2011. I definitely got my money’s worth. To those that don’t know PWI it is a standard fair healer/dd/tank system, fantasy mmorpg with guilds, pve, pvp, territory wars etc – pretty standard, and to my mind, very well done.
PWI killed itself some years ago when they introduced a tier of equipment called rank 9. It’s hard to put it into perspective for those that have never played it, but I will try. After playing 6 years, I have a bunch of accounts and have probably 800million coins worth of gears and money saved and like I said have spent $200-250. Right now there are people still playing with…..get this…..$US 20,000 – 30,000 worth of gears, and have attained a level of gears called r9rr (rank 9 re rolled twice). I can now play and be one shotted for 10 x my HP on my toughest char. Remember me mentioning my 800milll – many of those that are left can have one piece of gear worth 5billion coins, and a fully geared chars needs 10+ pieces.
People will argue about the fact that I could have been better by merchanting (playing the cash market etc) rather than playing the game, but that never interested me. I can’t find fun in setting up a bunch of shops for 24hrs and doing nothing else but monitoring them, which is what is needed.
To put it further into perspective, the top tiers of gear are called G16, Rank 8 and Rank 9 rr (re rolled twice) My personal thoughts on the gear levels are like this, if G16 = 1/10 and Rank 8 is 2/10, than R9rr is 10/10….and can be bought with real money, which is what has happened.
Sadly new players to PWI quickly get disillusioned by the gear and coin requirements and for years the numbers have been dwindling. World chat has become non-existent, friends leave, never to return, the map has been absolutely empty for years…… To be honest, I don’t know why the game is still surviving. You might asked at this point why I kept playing and it’s hard to give an answer. I logged on and did nothing but dailies for a couple years, and was kind of going through the motions with no goal in mind. Having said that I played a few other games in between (neverwinter, sto, gw2) but nothing gave me that same feeling of awe as when I first logged into PWI.
After finding a new player a year ago who was keen, I helped level him and gear him up a bit. Like many others he then got to a point where the real cost of rank 9 became known to him and he was getting ready to quit. For some reason he was then introduced to and after some days pestering me, convinced me to try a private server called EPIC PW.
That was a month ago and I have logged back into PWI once to say goodbye to my guild. EPIC is like how PWI should be run. I had very low expectations because of preconceived ideas about private servers, and was totally blown away. Rather than describe EPIC of itself, let me compare it to PWI.
LEVELLING and GEARS
PWI – ridiculous and stupid gear gaps – incomprehensible real money or time cost. Levelling to top level 105/105/105 is not ever realistically available.
EPW – some effort is needed to get your last 5% worth of gears. Might take a couple months and is not essential. Within a week of casual play you can compete in pvp even if you don’t win and within a couple weeks you are holding your own. PvE you are a god very early in game. Gears are simply and easily available to everyone. Top level of 150 is attainable with 2 weeks of casual play. For those who know what this means: you can spam PV if you want, and soloing it is easy.
PWI – described above – do you have $US30k to compete in pvp? If you want the f2p experience you will struggle with basic day to day running of your char.
EPW – nil. I might actually spend a few bucks because I feel guilty that I’m enjoying myself so much for nothing.
IN GAME ISSUES/COSTS/ETC
PWI – not enough inventory space, shards, refinement of gears, crafting costs, teleporting, everything costs a ton and is not usually attained in full by anyone because it costs too much. +12 refinement of gears is massive cost. Skills take ages, like many many months to get. Other tiers of advancement like meridians are a massive pain. Top cultivation level is usually not attained due to the pain in getting squads to help.
EPW – basically free. You start with full inventory/bank/wardrobe space, can teleport instantly for next to nothing, shards and refinement are next to nothing. EVERYTHING is easily, quickly and cheaply available. For those who know what this means: you can refine a piece of gear in 1 refinement with a +12 orb and 2 mirages. Together they cost about 200k coins I think – most mobs drop 20k coins per kill or 100k in pv. The cultivation system is simplified and the top level (celestial sage/demon) is attainable within the first couple hours of playing if you want. Skills are much more easily available. You immediately get full meridians upon reaching 150 via the EPW website.
PWI – a couple of weekly events. Random events are so rare as to not warrant a mention. Rewards from events don’t really help anymore anyway.
EPW – daily random events all over the place. I can’t really keep track. They give good rewards and are fun and worth doing. Don’t need to panic if you miss one because they are so common.
PWI – some freebies are given, the rest you need to buy and are expensive. Getting the right colours takes work.
EPW – basically free. All fashion is open and available from NPC’s. So cheap you just buy 20 of an item to get the colour you want and NPC the rest.
PWI – what??? Once a year someone claims they saw a GM in game.
EPW – online nearly permanently.
WORLD CHAT MONITORING
PWI – the limited chat is now full of bullying, sexual abuse, vulgarity, racism, non stop references to drugs, rape etc.
EPW – closely monitored. None of the above whatsoever.
PWI – for pve its hard and need squads for many things, with squads being hard to get now. PvP is non existent due to numbers, costs etc. Protection scrolls to avoid dropping gears are expensive, also limiting pvp.
EPW – for pve you are a god early and slaughter almost everything in your path. After a month I can solo many things that you never can in PWI, however some pve requires more effort so not a totally a walk over – I love it btw J PvP you can get into as soon as you like. Protection scrolls are as cheap as chips so load up and go pvping as much as you like.
I could go on and on but by now you should have the picture – EPW is awesome. If you are looking for a free game and don’t know where to start, trust me, try EPIC PW. If you don’t like it, you will have lost nothing, but trust me when I say that the misery that you might have experienced in PWI doesn’t exist in EPW.
Just a couple last points. The one downside to EPW is that it is an expansion behind, so no duskblade or stormbringers yet, nor the rest of the things that came with that expansion – so far I’m having so much fun, this really doesn’t bother me, and its coming. Secondly levelling is so quick and easy you can try every class.
This last point might really interest some of the old players of PWI – In EPW levelling is so quick and easy that maybe this is the reason I haven’t yet found players like the total gods of the old days of PWI. They might be there but I haven’t met them yet. In PWI there were many people who knew everything there was to know about a class and knew how to play that class like nothing else. If you are out there you would own EPW ijs.Anyway, just wanted to get all this off my chest to say thanks to the EPIC team. If any PWI dev’s exist and want to know how to resurrect your so called flagship title, go play EPW for a while and see how your own game should be run. All right that’s it. Good luck and keep gaming.