Black Desert Online’s Free Mediah Expansion Launched

When we sent Steven Messner into Black Desert Online [official site], he came out gushing about the MMORPG… then telling us how to build a production empire. It was not a small game, and it quickly became even bigger only a month after launch. Last week saw the release of the ‘Mediah’ expansion, a huge free update adding the eponymous new region to make the world about 30% larger – with all the new quests, bosses, items, and so on you’d expect from that.

The Mediah expansion’s headline additions are that whole dang new region, “over 1,000” new quests, a huge boss which publishers Daum Games say “can take on hundreds of players at a time”, 40v40 PvP skirmishes on the Crimson Battlefield, mighty new weapons and armour, and craftable ‘alchemy stones’ to socket weapons. Hit the patch notes if you want to see more, including details on balance tweaks.

I’m never a long-term MMORPG player but I do always enjoy having new lands to explore, and Mediah looks pretty nice:

Black Desert Online has been out in other parts of the world since as early as 2014, remember, so the recent European and North American release is tapping into – and catching up with – those. This wasn’t something they quickly knocked out.


  1. deadlybydsgn says:

    “Tyler Perry’s Black Desert Online”

  2. rexx.sabotage says:

    It is indeed a wonderful thing to explore. The sights, stories (interesting enough to survive the hatchet-job localization (mayhaps more so for the fact?)) and all-around things-to-do-ness certainly accommodate my proclivity for loitering and anti-quest procrastination. I’ve spent the last 50 hours just as a sub level 20 bootlegger and part-time fisherman and I feel like I am just scratching the surface of the tip of the iceburg. Where in the past we were sold that that an MMORPG doesn’t even begin until after a rush to end-game, Black Desert effectively eschews that absurdity and reminds us that act I and act II are the formative foundation of what makes act III contextual or even relevant.

    It manages to have casual appeal while exuberating the depth and complexity of something distinctly hardcore. Somehow the game feels like it hits all the right notes without weakening the sauce as such has been the typical concession of the MMORPG. I won’t say that it’s perfect (gender/race locked classes, tedious amity system, grindy progression (YMMV with that last one)) but, it’s the closest to, right as we have come.

    TD;DR It’s good.

    • Rizlar says:

      There is so much to commend, the way fighting stuff is meaningful and the central role of Knowledge in that and literally every other thing, the ‘maybe humans are the real monsters, oh wait a minute that’s an orc buying vegetables in the market’. Just all the stuff. Taming horses. Being able to go anywhere and do anything at any time and be accommodated. The value and level of detail in just, like, talking to random people.

      Too much to mention, really. It’s rad.

      Also coming up in the next month should be the first of the new(er) classes; the two samurai themed ones. Kind of want to take a break from the game until they release the ninja themed classes, supposedly some time in May.

      • Technotica says:

        Gamneplay wise the game is great but there lurk some nasty server instabilities underneath. Yesterday for instance all the mobs became unresponsive serverwide, you attack them and they wouldn’t attack back. So you could kill them without any danger (which is more boring than it sounds) and there is no way to get them to move again.

        • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

          Yep, it can happen on some channel at times, although now it’s way rarer compared to the previous week.

          Best to change channel as you’re doing yourself a disservice, the mobs might be less dangerous but the inability to gather them up poses a serious penality to clear speed and mana management.

  3. bit.bat says:

    Man, the amount of just THINGS that need to be made for games to look complete nowadays never ceases to amaze me. All the work going into the swords, buildings, grass, monsters, music, water the sound of water, splashes of water etc etc… it boggles the mind. And this is just a reaction from a trailer for a game I have no interest in playing! I might be having a meltdown!

  4. Danarchist says:

    I would gush all over this game but others do that just fine. My only dislike is the random PKing that starts after level 45 seems to be ramping from “mildly stressful and exciting” to “first 45 minutes in Rust” rapidly. It has become a common practice for bored no lifers to hang out in the areas frequented by the recently gankable and going out of their way to make your life miserable. Usually accompanied by a solid 5 minutes before and after of them telling you how awesome they are, and how bad you suck at surviving a guy 10-12 levels higher than you in +16 gear. Best advice I can give (that I just learned today)….dont fight back. If you just let them kill you they get this huge hit to karma and it basically makes them KOS in towns eventually, which is hilarious. If you do fight back they do not get this hit as it’s considered consensual.

    • rexx.sabotage says:

      Yup, never provide entertainment for tools like that. Make yourself as fun to attack as a harvesting node and let their pubescent ADHD do the rest for you.

      • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

        There might be some tools that at a very high level just like to grief at catfish, and that’s just being a troll as they’re really wasting their time.

        It’s also true that if you happen to get in a seriously high yeld spot that’s fit for higher levels, huge money/drops farming and so on, you’re then actively asking for something else.

        Most people there are interested in staying ahead and getting increasingly more power, most will absolutely try to slaughter you.

        I usually try the pacific route first, as most spots can be sort of shared a little, but when people don’t even answer or they simply try to get into your pulls, and there are many like that, please excuse me if i press alt+C and kill them.

        Oh, this also applies to those who answer in russian.

    • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

      Aside for the fact that right now it’s still impossible to enchant past +15, as the materials are still not unlocked, you’re mostly spot on.

      PvP there is about staying ahead of the curve, levels and gear have an absurd importance. It’s worth pointing out, however, that skill is a huge factor aswell: the top ranger in my guild is something i just can’t reach, he’s that good, and with subpar gear ( he’s an officer, shit job )he more than once killed people 1 or 2 levels above him.

      You have to be realistic and you absolutely don’t want to be stubborn: find something that works for you if the best spot is unreachable. Also, learn to play, and i don’t mean that in a derisory way, but i got my ass kicked a huge amount of times before i got some decent tutoring and class knowledge. While it’s true that power in this game is grind based, skill takes a larger part than other MMOs still.

      I’m now level 55 after being unable to level for some time, i just learned to adapt and survive, but now i can handle myself and kill most stuff. Oh, i also happened to get very low on karma myself, and i can tell you it’s not much of a disaster to regain it. Don’t let people grind your face just because of that, you’re the only one losing especially at higher levels where losing even 1% of experience is problematic. You’re also wasting your own time anyway.

      • aepervius says:

        There are how to around , and basically one can regain 60K karma in 20 minutes grinding at the outset. So yeah not a penalty.

        Frankly this is why I am still undecided for BDO, I *hate* non consensual pvp.

        • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

          Just keep in mind that it mostly happens when both you and others are actively trying to make the most of your grinding in the absolute best areas, and since this is a game in which the combat portion and even the best loot is pretty much relegated to the open world component only, having to fight for it becomes a sort of gating process much like a new harder dungeon might be for another game.

          • aepervius says:

            No it is not. Non consensual pvp is *never* anything like a raid, dungeon or pve. For one you learn rapidely where the mob are placed, their tactic/AI and what to do, and that’s for boss room because trash is usually not a problem. Non consensual pvp you are usually ganked , attacked, backstabed by somebody you did not see, have no way to alleviate or predict will happen.

            The two are not comparable in any way shape or form.

            I am not paying 30 euro or 50 euro to get trolled.

  5. Zanchito says:

    I just want to point out there’s a friendly RPS guild in this game too!

    • rexx.sabotage says:

      Orwen, Calpheon 02?

      RPS belong on the RP server, because R’s & P’s.

      • Holderist says:

        Is there actual active Roleplay going on there? Just something you sometimes stumble upon? Or is it like other games where it’s just an alternate word for PvE server?

  6. Morcane says:

    This game has ‘lots to do’, but …. it’s also kind of the wrong ‘lots to do’.

    Fishing is fun, for the first few times. After that, it’s just a drag and best done AFK. Cooking and producing? You can grind and dry and simple produce and alchemy stuff from a humongous database, which essentially is a pointless Facebook game.

    I do like the fact you can actually automate your production though, I have to hand them that.

    I’m glad the grinding and combat itself still is fun (playing a wizard never gets old), but the rest … yeah, it’s a lot but that’s it. It doesn’t help pretty much everything is hidden by a very bad case of Asian UI sickness. It mimicks the culture shock I had once going to Tokyo years ago, perhaps that’s the point. :)

  7. Vacuity729 says:

    I’ve never played an MMOAnything except for the trial of WoW and a few level of the Middle Eartn thingummajig, neither of which grabbed me in any meaningful way.
    This seems intriguing, but when I click the link above I get the message “Your country is restricted from accessing our service.” I guess I’d have to sign up via the f2p service? Except I don’t know the link for that, and Google’s not being helpful (or maybe I just woke up and am being too dozy).

    • Rizlar says:

      Apparently some regions are just completely unable to access the game due publishing restrictions. Daum is the western publisher and they are only allowed to sell the game in the specific regions they have been asked to.

      link to


      • Vacuity729 says:

        Digging around in Traditional Chinese as best I could (黑色沙漠), I could only find links directly to Pearl Abyss’ website (link to, which seemed to consist of four pretty pictures and some kind of feedback form. Nothing else. Looking at another website, it says it’s available here as f2p, but the link goes to the website with four pictures.

        If there’s anyone else from Taiwan reading this, could you help me out? I know there’s at least one other reader on the site who lives here.

  8. Owl Mark says:

    I bought this game yesterday, but I cannot run it because there is a bug link to, one have to wait 3 weeks for support reply. I am going to refund the money. It is a mess.