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NGD Studios is an Argentinean-based company that started off with just a few friends who enjoyed making games for themselves and grown up into a company with 30+ employees. They were the first people who started making games in Argentina, so i guess they learned a thing or two since then. What i liked about Regnum Online even before downloading its client, is that its developers seem to really care about their project and the community.
Being released in 2007 makes a game’s graphics outdated by now, but NGD Studios is working on that, replacing old models, textures and parts of game mechanics with a new ones, made with the current graphic and game design standards in mind. How many games can you name having a face-lift like that? Eve Online comes to mind, and that’s all i can remember for now. Also, Regnum Online’s developers are known to fix things the community had pointed onto, and not long ago they implemented a new ticket system for their support team, replacing the old “send us an email” one, which in my opinion clearly shows their care.
The next thing that caught my attention was graphics. As i said before its being upgraded, and the client had grown significantly because of that – if you see a client around 400-600 megs on some old file sharing service - it’s outdated. The new client looks… gorgeous. Actually, the game looks like an A-class P2P project, well, maybe a little bit worse, but still not even close enough to all those 1GB anime-style F2P games out there. It’s well animated, and the models looks very nice, and the overall design of this game makes you go and screenshot it here and there, all the time. The graphics of this game somewhat alike to World of Warcraft style – somewhat cartoonish, somewhat realistic.
Also, Regnum Online has a very high replay ability, because there are 3 realms, and you choose only 1 once and for all for that account - I mean, you really have to create a new account if you want to play for another realm. And the realms are all different, for example, Alsius is all covered with snow, icebergs, pines and snow bears, Ignis is a harsh, scorching hot desert land and Syrtis is a lush green,flower field and elves-infested land. All realms also have different quests.
Oh, this game has a lot of quests for PvE oriented players out there. Of course, they include some usual grinding like “go and kill me these bears” and so like, but there are some original stuff also. The downside of Regnum Online is that it doesn’t have a quest tracking system (at least, at the time when i write this review – i don't know, maybe they’ll implement it someday), means, you don’t have a bright spot on your map showing where to go. It was just fine for me, but might be somewhat hardcore for other players spoiled with quest tips. Usually, it’s not hard to find anything mentioned in the quest if you read the description carefully. But, as a girl, i have some topographic cretinism plaguing me even in online games, so i often forgot which way is east or west, lol I’m sure you’ll be just fine. What i am saying, you don’t need to grind to level up until at least lvl30 (there are still quests above that, but fever), you can just do quests or use a cash shop.
The cash shop… I liked that too, actually. NGD Games went the other way and did not put on sale anything that would unbalance the game, like armor pieces or stat boosters. Nope, they earn money the other way – you can buy a mount (and it’s permanent) or cosmetic items, or an experience booster. Also, if you want to skip leveling up and get right to RvR, you can buy a special item that will automatically level you to 30+, where you can start fighting for your Realms right away. Also, what brings cash in, is that healing and other potions are sold for cash – they are cheap but in constant use the same time. Plus, if you want to duel someone, you have to buy a dueling banner, which is also part of PVP. But, actually, you can play for free for a very long time if you’re in just for doing quests and RvR fights, it just would be harder for you, but still possible.
About PvP action now… If you came for PvP, this is not the game for you. Regnum Online is all about RvR, and RvR in Regnum Online is all about teamwork. It’s very interesting to play and on my look are way better than RvR in many other games. The only downside, if you’re a fighting class, you need to level up to lvl30 before you can successfully join RvR - if you are a healer, you can join at lvl21. Well, actually, everyone can join fights at lvl21, it’s just a matter of you getting killed often enough. When you “die” you are rather defeated than killed, you don’t lose items, but get a penalty not letting you earn new experience until you kill enough mobs to “lighten you up” after your failure.
The combat system, however, is kind of unusual and may be hard to get used to for some players. Unlike other games, you can’t just click an enemy and run to hit it, you have to active the combat mode by pressing space. Then your character draws his/her weapon out and takes a fighting stance, you walk manually to your foe and start hitting it. The good news are, if you’re not in a combat mode, most of the mobs won’t ever notice you until you draw your weapon out, so you can just run minding your own business and not being chased by a hundred of bloodthirsty mobs at the same time.
This post is getting a bit long, but i must also mention Regnum Online interface and sound. First, the interface – it’s some kind of a mixture between Lineage2-like interface and the one that is used in western games. It has some annoying downsides like window arrangement, but i can’t say it’s bad overall, just needs getting used to as the combat system does. The sound is, well, hard to decide if it’s bad or good. The music is fine and not very annoying when you listen to it for a long time, i even enjoyed it, but the sound effects are few and repetitive. For example, the wind blowing – it has only one sound, and a really short one, that repeats over and over, so i had to tune FX down. There are several bugs in Regnum Online, but as they get fixed constantly, i won’t go into the details – just rest assured, there’s nothing really bad that may prevent you from playing.
The last thing i want to say about Regnum Online, is that it may be a bit hardcore for players that had not much gaming experience before this game. Absence of the quest tracker, the combat mode and overall game difficulty may turn some players away at first. When i just started, i whined at the interface at first, but the developers had conveniently put a Help section right in the main menu (press Esc), so it went just fine, but then i went on killing my first mob and it almost killed me instead! There were few awkward moments also, like when I’ve got into a Valhalla zone (Alsius realm) and clicked a bright shiny stuff, which happened to be a portal to a zone with mobs who only had to sneeze at my newbie character to kill it…
But, i took my time and afterwards i liked Regnum Online pretty much. I play it myself from time to time, it’s even one of the games i have installed in my parent’s place, in case if i get bored while visiting them. So if you need an interesting and both good-looking game, you may want to give Regnum Online a try.
Online Games in Girl's Eyes