There Are An Awful Lot Of MMOs: Part 2

By John Walker on June 23rd, 2011 at 1:25 am.

I can't ever play Lucent Heart. It can't be as amazing as I now think it is.

Sometimes, late at night, I like to browse through the entries on Gamespress. It just makes me feel safe, comfortable, surrounded by the news that the games – they are always arriving. Shhhhh, it’s okay John, games are coming soon. So many games. So very many I’ve never heard of, too. And I think, “The Enigma Of Daggers? On PC? What’s that then?” And discover that Fight For Tuesdays/Cars That Can Walk/Heroes Of Heroic Hearing is not the potentially exciting new single-player RPG/FPS I’ve been waiting for, but in fact another (quite possibly potentially exciting) new MMO that’s being precariously balanced on top of the teetering pile. While (as much as I wish they were) none of those games are real, the following all are, and all appeared on GP in the last few days. Let me take you through my thought process with each encounter. (This is worth it for Lucent Heart alone.)

You may remember I did this once before. And at the time people spoke up and said, “Guns Forever And Forever?! That’s amazing!” So please do the same below if you’ve encountered any of the following. Or if we published a preview of it three weeks ago and I forgot. I’ve obviously not played any of them, and any comments below are purely based on mocking their press releases/websites because my self-esteem is so low that I feel I have to lash out at others. So…

Scarlet Legacy

Sounds like: 1920s-set point and click adventure about a murder in a posh mansion.

Is in fact: “a massively dynamic and addicting MMORPG that takes players through a journey of thousands of quest to save Princess Scarlet while utilizing the most effortless in-game mechanic on the market today!” It’s going into closed beta this August, and will apparently feature a combat system that means you no longer have “to spend hours deciphering complex control combinations.”

What makes it unique: They it the “Auto-Pilot fighting system”, which I don’t understand at all. It “allows players to have complete MMORPG-style control with a non-targeting combat system, giving the freedom of true control-driven and action-oriented game play.” Huh?

Uncharted Waters Online

Sounds like: A simulator of a vast expanse of sea, without maps.

Is in fact: “an historic nautical series developed by Tecmo Koei.” Obviously based on the Japanese series that dates back to 1991, “players will live, work and play the past, rewriting the 15th century to make their own history.” It’s been going since October 2010, and has just moved across onto the oddly named gPotato portal.

What makes it unique: It’s “a MMROPG set within several timelines during the Age of Exploration as a romantic and historic fictional account of the era.”

Fiesta Online

Sounds like: The affordable small Ford car finally getting recognised with with racing game it’s always deserved.

Is in fact: An F2P game with over two million players that’s never crossed my eyes before. Obviously manga-styled, because every game is, and boasts houses and weddings amongst its quests and guilds. They’ve just added a new character class called The Joker. It’s not The Joker.

What makes it unique: “The sophisticated community features allow you to find the right companion for all your journeys through Isya and cover all your needs when it comes to exploring the magical world with friends.”

The Chosen

Sounds like: Grimy third-person shooter in which you must battle demons from the underworld, as well as demons within.

Is in fact: A mythical Chinese MMO, filling that niche. It’s just entering its closed beta, ready for a North American (and presumably rest-of-world) release, letting people experience the five Chinese dynasties, via six classes and lots of battles. It also features flutes.

What makes it unique: I can’t even find a quote pretending it features anything distinct.

ROSE Online

Sounds like: Well, guessing that ROSE must stand for something, how about Recon Obsessed Soldier Experience? Or maybe a gardening sim?

Is in fact: A manga-themed cutesy MMO, which greets you on its front page with the alarming news that the “ITEM MALL HAS CHANGED!” I HATE it when shops move their stock around! I JUST WANT TO KNOW WHERE THE FLOUR IS! Mentioning that it’s “addictive”, which while a strange post to open up a press release (although a lot better than “addicting”), it’s apparently been going for years. The release also explains, “ROSE Online engages it’s [sic] users in story driven quests, battling monsters, worlds to explore and the ability to socialize with friends while engaged in special events and activities.”

What makes it unique: It’s the only one called ROSE Online?

Counter-Strike: Condition Borrowed

Operation7

Sounds like: SPIES!

Is in fact: Well, this one gets tricky, since the press release is in French, but says it’s from Germany. It seems it’s the French version of the German FPS MMO, in which men shoot at other men.

What makes it unique: Chrome’s translation offers, “To learn about ultra-realistic gameplay, IAAF launches a major campaign to recruit players that will run from June 21 to July 10, 2011 (midnight, Paris time). Operation7 Join the ranks of France! With an arsenal build customized, its hundreds of basic weapons, places of battle hardened realism, Operation7 is already recognized as one of the references of the genre.”

GodsWar Online

Sounds like: Non-words.

Is in fact: Manga, fighting, marriages, and then: “Shakespeare said “All the worlds a stage…” but in GodsWar Online, ancient Greek Gods and Heroes share the stage, and the results are anything but graceful and elegant.” Brain meltingfb.

What makes it unique: “The 45-degree visual angle and the cute background will help players used to 2D MMOPRGs feel more comfortable.”

Warrior of Dragon

Sounds like: Well, a free-to-play MMO.

Is in fact: Reasonably guessably, a Chinese MMO. In particular, one focused on PvP and not even bothering to translate the title to something coherent. I’d love to tell you more but their website doesn’t load in Chrome. Well, that’s not fair. It does load. It just never stops loading.

What makes it unique: This one combines ancient Chinese mythology with Western fantasy! Oh, how I long for a game that combines ancient Western mythology with modern-day Chinese culture. Oh, and it features a “striking combat system”.

Lucent Heart

Sounds like: Someone cut and pasted a medical description incorrectly.

Is in fact: A game so confident in itself that its press release doesn’t feel the need to say. Instead they boast of their open beta starting now. Manga-themed, and seemingly quite distinctly focused on lurrrrrve, it also offers “Real Horoscope Fortunes”, which is quite the claim. Apparently your star sign will decide the type of armour and skills you receive.

What makes it unique: Oh, where to begin. A frankly unsettling determination that this game will see you copping off with other players. It’s “the most SOCIAL and UNIQUE MMORPG to meet friends, have in-game soul mates, dance, and experience the Zodiac Power of Lucent Heart” [sic to everything there]. The “Cupid Matchmaking” section of the website tells me that I can “get up to 3 Soul Mates”, which does seem to be something of a contradiction. But then we can “party together for cool benefits!”, “get special items and accessories!”, and finally, “Marry your Soul Mate and have a wedding!” Marry them AND have a wedding?! They said it couldn’t be done. Also, is that marry all three? Is it a bigamy sim?

But more makes it unique. It contains “Caramelldansen”. Yes, you read me right. As the site notes, “THIS DANCE IS IN A GAME?! You got that right!” Apparently it’s a popular dance sensation! I had no idea.

And under PvP it says, most disturbingly of all,

Even have a “SPECIAL” after-wedding party!

I absolutely do not want to know.

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79 Comments »

  1. ZIGS says:

    I remember when I was a kid (15-20 years ago), games were expensive, I literally had no money and depended on parents to buy them for me, which was very rare. Every time I bought a new one though, it was like the greatest day ever and I played it until exhaustion because it was usually several months until the next one. Now there’s so many free/cheap games, I have a huge backlog that’ll only keep increasing and even some of the games I try and don’t like I dismiss without batting an eyelash. How things change

    • P7uen says:

      I agree, it’s interesting to have something like this showing us what we’re missing (or not) since it’s impossible to find everything.

      I love these posts, we just need one for manshoots and strategy games and I won’t have to do any research on my own for a few months.

    • gallardo1 says:

      Yup, more of these posts for other genres too, but about what’s here and not about what is coming.

  2. baby snot says:

    I’m going to be sick. Also, is that de_dust in that Operation7 screeny?

  3. notjasonlee says:

    i thought the article said “there are a lot of awful MMOs’. i guess i was right?

  4. FriendlyFire says:

    *Reads through all the entries, smiling a bit at some of them*

    *Reaches Lucent Heart*

    What is this I don’t even -

  5. Davee says:

    Interesting.

    It’s always amazed me how many of these small-time MMOs are actually out there. And of course; articles like these actually makes it fun to investigate. Thanks. ;)

    And oh, what’s up with the de_dust/dust2 (from Counter-Strike 1.6) map screenshot on Operation7? A fan-made map perhaps (not that I see much of a difference, they must have some really lazy level designers considering some of those screenies)?

  6. Raiyan 1.0 says:

    By Cthulhu, the 6th screenshot isn’t going to let me sleep today…

    • James says:

      I know, right? He’s looking right through me, at my soul…and worse, his assessment is unfathomable.

    • DJ Phantoon says:

      Fuck shit bananas

      I didn’t find that terrifying until I scrolled back up and then made eye contact.

      He is the dark herald. There is no use in running, as he can already see all of your hiding places.

    • President Weasel says:

      I approve of and endorse the post made by DJ Phantoon. Now that the end times are here, I’ll be off to make myself a survival bunker. Not that it will matter – I have locked gazes with the dark herald, and now my soul is forfeit and my doom is assured.

    • HermitUK says:

      ROSE Online’s unique feature. IT STARES INTO YOUR MIND.

    • Bhazor says:

      I like the sixth screenshot. It looks like you’ve walked in on him unexpectedly.

      “It’s not what it looks like”

    • HermitUK says:

      “I can explain why I’m dressed as an Angel, I swear!”

    • Jabberwocky says:

      The gaze… so terrifyingly beautiful.
      I shall do as you command, oh great archangel of flowers.

  7. herebedragons says:

    Oh, and it features a “striking combat system”.

    Does this mean the combat system involves people striking other people?

  8. Ricc says:

    The ROSE Online screenshot looks the most disturbing. Those eyes… Oh god, those eyes.

  9. bglamb says:

    John, it’s your mother here. Why aren’t you tucked up in bed? It’s half past one!

  10. The_Great_Skratsby says:

    De_Dust the MMO, now with lens flair!

  11. Jumwa says:

    I used to adore playing the first two Uncharted Waters games back in my wee young days. Though the MMO version sounds terribly complex and off putting. I’ll stick to my old 2D version should the mood strike me, I guess.

    • Bhazor says:

      I adored Uncharted Waters: New Horizons on the SNES and the online version is surprisingly authentic in terms of mechanics and I was able to skip much of the lengthy tutorial.

      But!

      Its also as grindy as you’d expect. The worst offender is that you need to unlock ports before you can visit them which completely cripples the trading aspect.

      What a shame. Still it’s worth a go if you played the originals.

  12. The_B says:

    John, will your after wedding party feature this Caramelldansen dancing thing? I feel now that it must, on pain of pressure from the denizens of Castle Shotgun.

  13. banski83 says:

    That dance is amazing. I’m using it this weekend. Stay tuned, lads!

  14. Bassism says:

    Those are some really well modelled skirts in that Lucent Heart video.
    Eat your heart out CCP.

  15. JackShandy says:

    Hold on, is everyone in Lucen Heart a woman like that video suggests? Is this the world’s first Massively Multiplayer Gay Marriage Sim?

    • mortimasIV says:

      No. Better. It’s the first Massively Multiplayer Bigamous Gay Marriage Sim.

      edit: Probably the first Massively Multiplayer Bigamous Gay Marriage Anything.

  16. Stormbane says:

    Oh man I played ROSE online about 5 years ago! I thought it went Pay to Play. I’m kinda tempted to take a stroll in memory lane… I wonder if it has changed in the last 5 years.

  17. Tams80 says:

    It’s too early for this. *mind melted*

  18. P7uen says:

    People don’t get murdered in posh mansions, only in common-as-muck mansions.

  19. Anthile says:

    The worst part? This is still just the tip of the ice berg. Think of any sport. There is at least one anime-themed MMO about it. Pool, street basketball, dancing – you name it.

    Also: piercing eyes tag, please.

  20. squareking says:

    What happened with Black Prophecy? Does the hivemind approve?

    • Kdansky says:

      Nope. It’s pretty much boring and/or shite. You can fly around in spacecraft that travels at the speed of a bicycle, and the flight physics feel terrible. You also get a water pistol for a gun. And then you are supposed to grind five hours for the next upgrade.

      All in all: Meant to keep you busy, not an interesting game.

  21. ryven says:

    ROSE stands for “Rush On Seven Episodes.”

    True fact.

  22. Jake says:

    There should be an MMO which incorporates all other MMOs. Dimensional rifts have torn the massivelymultiplayerverse apart and everyone has to fight for survival as universes collide. It’d be a crisis on infinite virtual worlds with little anime dancing girls finding themselves fighting to the death against worlds of tanks; pirate fleets vs orcs and dragons; Lego men vs superheroes and gnomes in resplendent suits of magical armour vs entire armadas of starships.

    It’d be glorious chaos with XP flying everywhere and no level cap and everyone could dance as much as they wanted.

  23. MythArcana says:

    Perhaps you might be a bit loose on interpretation with the title. It really should read;

    There Are An Awful Lot Of Fly-By-Night Developers Beating a Lame MicroTransaction Trend To Death For Cash Grabs. Our PCs Are NOT Your Online Store!

    Yes. I definitely like my accurate version much more.

  24. terazeal says:

    Wait, are these actually all free-to-play? That’s pretty amazing. I was under the impression that most MMORPGs had at least some sort of monetary transaction system in place, if not a full-blown subscription.

    • MD says:

      “Free-to-play” has become a sort of euphemism/buzz-word for microtransaction-based games. So there’ll be no compulsory monthly fee, but you’ll pay real money to buy items, or to level up your character more quickly, or to gain access to certain things that are otherwise inaccessible.

      I haven’t played or researched any of the games in this post, but chances are this is the sense in which they are “free”.

    • terazeal says:

      That makes more, and simultaneously less, sense. I always assume that free just means free, that is going to be confusing.

  25. HeavyStorm says:

    Well, it’s not right for me to say, since I’ve never played it, but anyway, my girlfriend loves ROSE, for some reason (my guess it’s because its [sic] free, otherwise she would be playing WOW).
    The only thing I can tell all of you guys (since most gals probably already know it) is that most of these attract many Otaku and lots of girls. The are colorful and pretty. Imagine, for example, my reaction a few months ago when I introduced WOW to my girl and she said, at the very start of the game, “it’s so ugly, why?” And of course she didn’t mentioned the graphics per se, but the models.
    P.S.: Before you all think I’m in contradiction, she likes WOW, just think it’s ugly.

  26. Thwick says:

    There was an MMO that was being shown, mostly in concept art, about 5 years ago now. It was based around a Victorian theme but there were some futuristic elements in it. It was to be a historical fiction type MMO where they announced you’d be able to interact with real historical figures like Abe Lincoln and such. I also think there may have been aliens or time travel involved in the basic premise. Anyone remember anything like that?

  27. Corrupt_Tiki says:

    What’s more disturbing is I have actually seen people from the great orient dancing like that in night clubs. =/

    • ix says:

      I find the dancing no more or less “disturbing” than, say, crunking, or many other dances that come from (sub)cultures that I’m not a part of. This one registers kinda low on my WTF meter, tbh.

    • Corrupt_Tiki says:

      Ah true, I am probably more of a hip hopper, so I just bob my head whilst drinking excessivly. I think that’s what they do, I’m not sure. It’s what I do at any rate.

  28. Okami says:

    RPS Lucent Heart Guild anyone?

  29. Chibithor says:

    There are a lot of awful MMOs*

  30. stahlwerk says:

    Come on! Developers! It’s 20-friggin-11 and we still have to employ magnetic pandas? How hard is it to model and animate a friggin PANDA-BACKPACK/RUCKSACK/KNAPSACK-STRAP?

    Edit: http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/caramelldansen#.TgLqqs1i6G8

  31. Tei says:

    Downloading a lot of Free to play MMO’s, is a lot like buying in a “flea market“.

  32. mkultra says:

    You’ve reminded me how to not, place a comma.

  33. noom says:

    Wow! Lucent Heart. At last a muhmorpaguh that appeals to me :D

  34. Baboonanza says:

    I can’t believe there are actual, living and breathing programmers working on Lucent Heart. People just like me who didn’t get the lucky breaks I did and now must spend their time coding niche anime-themed cutesy F2P MMOs to feed their children.

    Poor bastards. It must be the most depressing job in the world.

  35. sonofsanta says:

    It’s a strange sentiment, to realise there are so many worlds out there I will never travel, so many people I will never meet, and experiences I will never feel. Somewhere out there is an alternative version of me who stumbled into one of these years ago and now moves in completely different circles and travels a different path through life. Each one could be the panacea for the worries of my life, each a refuge in the dark storm of existence, but chance and flighty fate have decreed that none of them will be.

    Although I suspect Lucent Heart still wouldn’t be one I’d be playing, in any world.

  36. RobF says:

    I wasn’t thinking of cars with Fiesta Online.

  37. destroy.all.monsters says:

    When your mods look like this the game just *has* to be amazing -
    http://www.lucentheart.com/page.aspx?pid=174

    I’m especially looking forward to hearing about the divorce mechanics.

    Obligatory comment about marriage being a win condition for women and a lose condition for men.

    Slightly less obligatory comment about heterocentric gameplay.

  38. loshon says:

    Whoa now, Fiesta Online was legit back in the day when it was first released. Now I hear you can buy shit for real money and the level cap is >100.

    Crazy times.

  39. bwion says:

    “Even have a “SPECIAL” after-wedding party!”

    I was wondering what had happened to Fallout Online.

  40. dirtyword says:

    Gahd – “addicting” makes me want to burn out my eyes. Don’t correct me. I know it’s grammatically correct, but it makes you sound like a dullard.

  41. iWHUT says:

    Yes, Lucent Heart. That’s awfully big of you.

  42. Odeon says:

    I sent an email into the RPS guys a while back talking about my favorite game to play, both now and for the past 3+ years, called AfterWorld. The SINGLE reason I read this article and all of the comments is to see if it was mentioned, but still not a peep from them. :(
    Anyway, it’s a Russian-made F2P RCE, meaning that it also doesn’t cost you a cent to play it if you don’t want to or can’t pay, but that’s because of the RCE (Real Cash Economy) aspect. All in-game money has a 10-to-1 ratio to US dollars, so 10 AWD (AfterWorld Dollars) is $1 US. This, in turn, means that there is no subscription fee, but that you can donate (while the game is still in open testing) $1 US to get 10 AWD to do with what you like, and money goes a fair distance in the game, especially when starting out. People have donated thousands and thousands to get in-game money for a HUGE variety of things to do, but also because the developers (Dedicated Logic) have posted on their official forum that there will be NO wipes of anything that exists in the game from a good 2+ years back. Once the game goes gold, the “donate” button will turn into a “deposit” button and anyone with AWD in the game will be able to transfer that in-game money back into their real life bank account whenever they choose.
    Beyond that, it’s far from anime in design, doesn’t use any form of classes (just a “flat” system of 98 distinct skills – so far – that you can work on as little or as much as you like), and is based on a post-apocalyptic (but not post-WW3 or nuclear war or the like) world set in Russia. I played Star Wars: Galaxies for a few years, then WoW for a couple of years, then a game called Entropia Universe for a year or so, then I found AfterWorld and haven’t had any need to look elsewhere. There’s PLENTY of information on the offical site (www.afterworld.ru), the official forums (talk.afterworld.ru), the player-made and updated wiki site (wiki.afterworld.ru), and the player-made and updated forums (www.afterworldforum.com is the biggest). It’s not the greatest thing to look at right now, but when they go gold (which should happen within the year, possibly even the next couple of months), there will be a MASSIVE graphics update, as well as a huge increase in just about everything else that is already available in the game (plus a bunch of stuff that is only hinted at so far!).
    Check out their screenshots page to see how it looks now and will look after the big update. There’s also a couple of preview videos at this page.
    P.S.: Yes, I’m a total AW fanboy! 8-P

  43. OP8 says:

    aww you cynical bunch, Lucent Heart is a great lil game – EU servers have gone to open beta and the new version coming soon will allow you to make up your own dance moves, so you can crunk or whatever, or have DDR-style Dance Battles! lol http://www.lucentheart.co.uk

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