TERA Is Free For 30 Minutes In Your Browser

By Jim Rossignol on June 7th, 2012 at 7:00 pm.


TERA is using the grainy magic of Gaikai’s cloud gaming service to bring us all the first thirty minutes of the – admittedly very pretty – fantasy MMO. Yes, it’s free and (depending on connection speed) an instant thing to try out. I’m not convinced that streaming like this is the future of gaming, but it might just be the future of demos, especially when it sidesteps the 20gb clients we have to face for the “trial” versions of MMOs. That’s pretty neat.

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90 Comments »

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  1. djbriandamage says:

    This is perhaps the best possible use of this streaming technology: letting potential customers try your game for free without having to download dozens of gigs of data or install anything. Cost and inconvenience are probably the two biggest barriers preventing people from trying a game.

    I really wouldn’t want to play a whole game this way, and this demonstration doesn’t show how well the game would run on my PC’s hardware, but 30 minutes with the full package is a very compelling sales pitch if nothing else.

    Also, I could have done without the tophat boob monster.

    • Vorphalack says:

      That’s Chesty McDapper to you, pal.

      • djbriandamage says:

        How embarrassing.. I’ve been calling her Scarity Frontlumps.

        • Ragnar says:

          No no no, this is clearly the Duchess of Mammary. Chesty McDapper is her younger sister.

    • trjp says:

      Problem is, the final open-beta ran AWFULLY on my PC so seeing the game in stream-o-vision isn’t going to convince you that it won’t run like that on yours…

      A mixture of massive amounts of lag, textures missing from things and controls which felt almost completely disconnected from the thing I was controlling were all ‘issues’ there – wheras they’re ‘features’ here ;)

      • Ringwraith says:

        OnLive is a fairly good service, and also has a similar 30-minute free trial of any game in their library.
        Streaming isn’t too bad provided your internet connection is up to snuff, but that’s pretty much the problem.

        • trjp says:

          I played the latest Deus-Ex on Onlive (for £1) and it was fine – yes, there was a bit of lag, but it was quite playable (esp on my laptop where the lower res isn’t noticable)…

          That lag wouldn’t matter 1 jot for a trad MMO with ‘mutual shin-kicking’ combat but Tera, ironically, tries to do better than that so it’s a bit of a odd choice…

          Hey ho – the game is a horror, visually, at the best of times anyway :)

    • RegisteredUser says:

      I’ll take a Rule 34 of tophat boob monster or Hattina Boobelburger any day.

  2. MythArcana says:

    And here it finally comes; the end of choice. Give it about two years and you’ll never see a retail boxed version ever again.

    • Gonefornow says:

      Good riddance!

      • Jerakal says:

        Hear, hear!

      • Kaira- says:

        I say, go eat a bucket full of male genitalia. If I could, I’d buy everything in retail boxes.

        • Gonefornow says:

          Blimey, tasty.

          If I could, I’d buy everything digitally. Wait a minute I can already.. Sweet.

          Now the reasons for this behavior:

          -No physical media, saves space in my flat.
          -No unnecessary use of plastic and other materials to store immaterial digital products.
          All I need is a single hardrive and GoG, bless ‘em.

          I do understand those who suspect Steam, Onlive, etc.. going under, taking your legally bought games with them, but like I said..GoG to the rescue.

          What ya got?

          @Dr I am a Doctor
          Well, I got my comeuppance then.
          Can’t fight the feeling(s).

          @Runs With Foxes
          I did have a broader perspective here.
          Talking ’bout digital distribution in general vs physical copy ‘n stuff.

          • Dr I am a Doctor says:

            “The feeling of unboxing”, dude. Who needs your arguments?

          • Runs With Foxes says:

            Buying DRM-free digital versions from GoG is one thing. Cloud gaming in which you own and control absolutely nothing is something else entirely. I can’t speak from GoG, but I would think that’s anathema to their philsophy, and you should feel bad for invoking GoG to defend the cloud.

        • Mordsung says:

          Your desire to maintain boxed retail copies is unnecessarily increasing the production cost for gaming.

          If no retail exists, no manufacturing facilities would need to exist to press the disks, create the manuals, create the boxes, etc.

          In fact, the faster our society evolves into a more purely digital form, eliminating physical books, media, etc, the cheaper the simple day to day operations of many corporations become.

          Now consider this: we (as in the human “we”) recently printed a rat heart using a 3D printer, and got the thing beating.

          This means we printed organic material.

          Meaning we could even evolve into a society where our very food is stored digitally and then printed when needed.

          Railing against the coming digital age just makes you look like a guy in a horse drawn carriage bitching about cars.

          • Vorphalack says:

            You are living in a fantasy land if you think production cost and 3rd party retail savings will be passed onto the consumer. That is factually already not happening.

          • Mordsung says:

            You’re thinking too short term.

            If the corporations no longer have to manufacture, they no longer have the power centered on them.

            Right now, why do small companies get eaten by big companies? Because those big companies have the power to more easily distribute the games of smaller companies.

            If physical distribution ceases being a thing, the big publishers just lost power. Just look at digital distribution and things like kickstarter. They’ve already knocked power out of the hands of the big companies and put them back in the hands of the smaller ones.

            Think in decades, not months and years.

            The game industry of 2022 won’t even resemble the game industry of 2012.

          • Bob_Bobson says:

            Wait, I want all my computer games digitally, but this talk of replacing physical books is heresy! Sure have digital versions too, choice is always a good thing, and I’ll eat digital food, especially if it means I get a cheap low land-use meat analog but if you take away my paper books I will be grumpy in the extreme.

          • Ragnar says:

            Oh, I have no doubts that the savings won’t be passed on to consumers (which is what they said of moving to smaller boxes, digital manuals, etc), but I’m all for making games cheaper to make all the same. Digital distribution has paved the way for both new indie games and reviving old classics, both of which would not have happened had they needed to be printed, packaged, and stocked in stores.

            Besides, with the costs of making games constantly increasing, I’m happier with them cutting costs on things that don’t impact the game (packaging, physical distribution, B&M’s higher % cuts) rather than on things that do.

            Also, digital distribution itself creates savings for consumers. I get digital copies of games from Steam / Amazon / GoG for much less than what I would pay at B&Ms.

  3. Torgen says:

    Good God, the person who designed that monster has more issues than National Geographic.

    • Phantoon says:

      I’ve never been eye-raped by a vampire clown.

      But now I feel like I have been.

    • yutt says:

      Shooting men in the face with a high calibre assault weapon, watching what was once a human face explode into a slurry of flesh and bone, chased by torrents of blood? No problem, says the average RPS reader.

      Exaggerated female anatomy with sharp teeth? Oh my goodness! Someone call the UN! RAPE! RAPE!

      • Phantoon says:

        I think he was saying it’s a terrifying looking monster.

        I certainly am!

      • Apples says:

        But RPS (and lots of commenters) were complaining about the excessive violence!
        Also imagine there was a monster in a game that was a guy with an exaggerated, er, male anatomy, dressed in a ‘sexy’ costume that shows it off. Your thoughts would probably be “Hmm, whoever designed this might have some issues.”

        • yutt says:

          No, it would actually be, “Hmm, some people certainly have different tastes than I, but that’s okay because I’m not a Puritan and I don’t need to characterize myself as being a sexually righteous crusader fighting the forces of perversion and deviance.”

          Honestly I don’t make any attempt to seek out and oppress or shame those with different sexual tastes than me. Is that wrong of me?

          • Koozer says:

            We’re all so glad you let us know how wonderfully liberal minded you are. You are a model human being and we must follow your shining example by being aggressively tolerant on the internet.

          • BioSnark says:

            “Honestly I don’t make any attempt to seek out and oppress or shame those with different sexual tastes than me.”

            Sure you do. That’s exactly what you were doing in your response to Torgen parodying his comment

            “Exaggerated female anatomy with sharp teeth? Oh my goodness! Someone call the UN! RAPE! RAPE!”

          • Apples says:

            Dude, I don’t think that top thing is meant to be anyone’s “sexual taste”. I don’t know why you’re portraying it as if I’m trying to quash other people’s sexual preferences with righteous christian fury when in fact the initial monster is not SUPPOSED to be sexy (to the majority of people), it just has sexy aspects bolted on because, hey, it’s female, right? Try and think of when, if ever, you’ve seen the same done with male monsters and I think you’ll get closer to my point than shrieking about how there’s nothing wrong with any type of sex (protip: there actually is. If you’re a pedophile, you have issues. If you find exaggerated, monstrous, demonic/zombified women sexy (especially ones as crap as this one), you also likely have issues!)

            edit: in fact i dont really care what you find sexy, even if it’s this, but if you think this stuff is totally acceptable and not tasteless and weird at all and perfectly fitting in a game that has absolutely no thematic reason to include it, and we can’t criticise it just because someone might find it sexy, welp…

          • NathanH says:

            For pretty much any other game I’d agree with you, O fruity one, but I get the feeling that this game is specifically aimed at people who like the idea of being terrorized by a crazy vampire with huge tits.

          • Apples says:

            Well, then it’s nice that they made a single game to cater to people who like vampires with giant tits AND people who like anime children. Truly, something for everyone!

          • NathanH says:

            Exactly, they’re just filling in a niche in gaming in an entirely reasonable and not-at-all creepy way.

    • Ragnar says:

      Am I the only one who immediately thought of the Shepard and River scene on Firefly? I can easily picture the girl murmuring “Too much boob!”

  4. Danarchist says:

    I wonder how all of these services/games/streaming media plan to deal with the issues we are already having with bandwidth in the future? As companies are moving to “Cloud” services and even our ancient grandparents are streaming video off of youtube daily I think were going to hit a wall here pretty soon.
    Pretty good explanation actually here:
    http://penny-arcade.com/patv/episode/spectrum-crunch
    I see it kind of like how we started having issues getting enough fuel once cars become popular and affordable here in the states.

    • Mistabashi says:

      That would be an issue if internet speeds were a constant, but they aren’t.

    • ThTa says:

      That only applies to cellular networks. Also, internet speeds aren’t a constant and new technologies to make better use of that bandwidth are constantly being researched (for example, LTE-Advanced will be able to provide at least ten times the speeds of current LTE networks and hundreds of times the speeds of 3G ones using the same spectrum) – the real issue is cellular ISPs being unwilling to invest in such upgrades, rather price-gouging their consumers with the network they already have, and freeing up ancient frequencies being an extrordinarily time-consuming and expensive process.

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      Andy_Panthro says:

      One of the major issues they mention in that particular Extra Credits involves analogue TV signals, which in the UK (and probably many other places) are getting phased out. This must surely free up a lot of spectrum?

      I would also hope that we’ll get more resourceful and efficient at using it, so that we don’t run into any problems in the future.

  5. Nick says:

    that screenshot is enough to put me off. Well, if I wasn’t already putr off by the sexualised child race.

    • Dr I am a Doctor says:

      Just as a heads up: Below my comment, pedophile apologists will crop up and everyone will argue, while nobody gets moderated for it

      • Ragnar says:

        I see neither pedophile apologists, nor everyone arguing. You built up my hopes, sir, and left me wanting. :(

    • westyfield says:

      Yeah, if Jim had meant to choose one image to ensure I’ll never try this game, he did a good job.

    • Vinraith says:

      I generally won’t play MMO’s anyway, but I have to admit that TERA is uniquely off-putting. That screenshot only makes it moreso, to say nothing of the kiddie creepiness.

      • Jerakal says:

        Above this comment at least one person will have been an impertinent ass. But he’s precognizant, so it’s alright.

        • Premium User Badge

          jrodman says:

          I didn’t even read the comment you were commenting on my first pass through this article, and assumed you were mocking a target who didn’t deserve it.

          Oops!

  6. Skabooga says:

    That image, it has so much symbolism.

    • Aardvarkk says:

      I appreciate how upset the girl in the picture is, it mirrors my own reaction to the crazy boob-fanged horror.

  7. vee41 says:

    Didn’t like it at all.

    Insert random GW2 praise here.

  8. Premium User Badge

    Screwie says:

    Is there a ‘staring boobs’ tag?

  9. PostieDoc says:

    I own the game.
    It is boring as hell.
    Even as a newbie I couldn’t bring myself to read the quest text as they are all basicaly the same kill 10/ go collect/ talk to quests over and over again.

  10. ThTa says:

    I feel like this gives you a better idea of what to expect:

  11. DiamondDog says:

    No thanks.

  12. Mockdot says:

    Doesn’t even work for me and I’m on a 15Mbps connection. I did play on the beta though, it was ok, wanted to see how this web browser experience was but I guess 15Mbps is not enough for it.

    • lionheart says:

      Yep, Tera on my connection has a lovely pink tint, and the rain in game causes awful screen tearing to the point where you can’t see anything on-screen at all.

    • Hoaxfish says:

      It wouldn’t work for me at first, then I turned on upnp on my router… not sure if that was a fix though, or coinsidence. Gaikai has generally been okay for me at home, but doesn’t for when I’m at work (better connection, but more locked-down)

    • haze4peace says:

      I ran through the demo to see the tech in action. I was monitoring my data use and I was downloading about 550kBps and uploading between 10 to 30 kBps. I did notice I had a green connection, so I assume you can play with a lesser connection too and just have a more compressed video. The input reaction times were great though. I didn’t notice any lag. I wasn’t able to fullscreen the demo even though there was an option to do so.
      The tech uses java.

    • Shortwave says:

      How well do you figure my shotty 2.0 will do? : P

  13. caddyB says:

    It’s fun in short bursts.

  14. Jerakal says:

    Yeah, I’d love to try out this demo. Too bad it only gets as far as a splash screen showing the game’s title before crapping out and asking me if I’d like to buy the game.

    I declined.

  15. Dana says:

    Instant – No Download. Except for Java.

  16. Premium User Badge

    jrodman says:

    That picture is awesome.

  17. grable says:

    I just tried it.. took a few minutes to boot up but i was in the game in less than 5 minutes. and the response times was pretty good.
    The resolution wasnt up to par though, i had trouble reading most of the text.

    But overall im impressed with the tech :)
    Oh the game? Didnt impress me much.

  18. db1331 says:

    Only 30 minutes? That’s a terable deal. You’d think they’d offer you mmore time.

  19. Hoaxfish says:

    Daughter, I’m not letting you out the house dressed like that!
    But mooooom, nobody wears tophats any more.

  20. tynen says:

    I tried twice, couldn’t get the damn thing to work.

  21. Kuroko says:

    I don’t know why I’m trying to get this thing to work when I already have the actual game installed and subscribed. ><

    After playing this game I can say I will not play anything with less boobs than this. I'm spoiled now :)

  22. wcanyon says:

    Is that a Vindictus screen shot? … seems similar to something from that game anyway.

  23. Auzy says:

    Worked, but i cant see….anything

  24. spezz says:

    I love tera. The game is alright, but whats spectacular about it is how it sets off the morally righteous with nothing more than midgets and boobs. Seriously every time this game makes someone uncomfortable enough to blow their conscientious load, En Masse sells another copy to someone who doesn’t take things so seriously.

    • Nick says:

      aren’t you special.

    • Jay says:

      Regardless of the Tera Community Party Line on this stuff, I defy anyone to spend time around the elin community in-game and not conclude that a scary amount of them have issues around little girls.

      • spezz says:

        Hmm yes, I agree that those types exist. They are in every mmo. At least this game makes them easy to pick out. There are a whole slew of Japanese and Korean games that are 100x worse (Hyperdimension Neptunia anyone?)

        I’ve all but stopped playing tera actually, just because it doesn’t really immerse me. My wife however, loves it. 3 of her characters are elin. She thinks they’re the cutest thing. There’s even some other females (gasp!) in her guild who love the elin too.

        My point was, intended or not, it’s genius marketing. There is no such thing as bad publicity.

    • pipman3000 says:

      children*

      they’re children, not midgets.

  25. Ahtaps says:

    That screenshot is incredibly awesome. It’s always nice to see scary boob monsters trying their very best to console a crying lady by giving them a nice, big ol’ hug.
    On topic (a bit more) so what this article is saying that we have an MMO requiring an internet connection running through a streaming service that also requires an internet connection? Isn’t that a bit like taking a photocopy of a photocopy? It will be interesting to see how well it works.

  26. Beartastic says:

    At first I thought this was an amazing first sign for the future.

    Suddenly: “Your bandwidth has dropped below the minimum required for quality gameplay. Please quit other connected applications or services and try again.”

    Now I fear that Australia will never get demos again.

  27. alt24z says:

    Apparently my 100mbit connection isn’t sufficient enough to run the demo.

    Sureeeeeee

    @Beartastic I’m also from aus :(

  28. aliksy says:

    text is too small to read. Wastes about 5 minutes at the start having you click on people/click through quest text. Then climbing some ladders. Bored by the time I got to some zombies, and they died without any challenge.

    More games need to an option to drop you in the middle of things instead of assuming you’ve never played a video game before. Let there be a “here’s how you open your inventory” tutorial for those people, but the rest of everyone should be able to skip right to exploding the undead.

  29. Kadayi says:

    Effie Trinket reveals her demon nature to Katniss by the look of things tbh.

  30. Caiman says:

    “Insufficient bandwidth
    Your bandwidth has dropped below the minimum required for quality gameplay. ”

    Ah, the future of PC gaming.

  31. geldonyetich says:

    The gaming cloud service ran the demo surprisingly well for me – I guess it helps if you’re in North America. Although the sound was a tad imperfect and the text was so washed out I could not really read much of the game (e.g. skill tooltips).

    As for the game itself… can’t help but feel like it’s a console port wrapped around typical MMORPG trappings. That’s sad because it’s not, it was going actiony to try to diversify a sorely-stale PC MMORPG market, but the graphical style looks like some kind of made-in-South-Korea/Japan game (e.g. Aeon/Lineage, Devil May Cry) and the controls feel ponderous, like I’m playing a Monster Hunter game. Maybe there’s some cool way to chain my attacks, but given that the tool tips are illegible all I can do is try to hammer the space var whe it tells me to.

    Overall, the demo clarifies for me that this is about on the level I can already find in some Free To Play import action MMORPGs. Box price plus subscription? It’s not 2008 anymore.

  32. KaelWolfcry says:

    Played the demo a few times, with each of the offered pre-built Korean supermodels. And a guy that looks like a Galka from FF XI, but we’ll not point that out because hey lookit the shiny string!

    Anyway…the resolution of the demo was eye-squintingly bad…but bringing the thing to fullscreen helped a bit. And, honestly, combat was fun, engaging and high velocity. Easily one of the better combat systems I’d seen since Tabula Rasa. Or at least TSW.

    Shame that, according to reviews, the rest of the game’s trappings aren’t nearly as dynamic. This thing’s even less of a groundbreaker than GW2, apparently. Still…color me intrigued. I might just leap in and toss a wallet at it sometime, if to show support to Good, Honestly New Ideas.