One of the beauties of being a Western MMORPG publisher is that if you’re ever on the look out for a new project, you only need to look in the direction of South Korea, Japan and in this case China to find exactly what you’re looking for.
In Eligium: The Chosen One, developed by Shenda Games, Frogster found a free-to-play title which ticks all the boxes and when we saw a recent build in action we were flabbergasted at just how many features were poking out from the game’s inconspicuous looking surface.
From the off players must create a character for either the Empire of Glory and Kingdom of Holy Light factions with four different races – Humans, Elves, Viridis or Pandas – and five different classes to choose from; Warrior, Hunter, Druid, Mage or Monk. Some combinations are locked off to certain races but overall there will be a tremendous amount of customisation possibilities offered from the get go, with vanity items sold via the in-game store as well as plenty of free options.
The setting sees the game’s two main factions uniting against a massive demon army which has breached the old seals and laid waste to a massive area of the game-world, yet we were shown a rather pleasant city named Sanctia which boasted a very typical fantasy style with glowing crystals sat atop plinths and statues lining walkways. It was at this point we were shown the different camera angle settings with 2.5D, 3D and 2.8D options present It reminded us a lot of another Frogster project Mythos and Eligium transitioned between each view without any hassle.
Despite this being a strictly hands-off session, the controls and combat seemed fairly typical of the genre with a skill-bar located at the bottom of the GUI with hot keys to fire off skills independently of the mouse. Nothing too exciting, but it does communicate this title’s traditional gameplay focus and each element could be moved around.
What’s exciting about Eligium is really what’s underneath the hood. As our guides were delving into the menus they pointed out a hatch-log for cataloguing and caring for pets, an in-game auction house which doesn’t require NPC interaction and a curious ranking feature which showed the toughest characters on the server, their status and where in the world they are located. This is when Frogster’s latest acquisition began to sound much more interesting to us, as this feature celebrates the best adventurers on any given server providing some well overdue kudos and fame to those who’re most committed.
These gifted players are likely to get head-hunted by the best PvP teams around as well, as this title well and truly makes the most of the competitive streak between gamers. There will be guild versus guild games, siege wars where one team must hold out against an enemy team’s onslaught on their castle, server invasions and a grand weekly event where players can enrol to be part in a 300 versus 300 player skirmish. How exactly these systems will work once the game is live is still to be finalised, but they’re certainly exciting especially for a free-to-play game.
For the more single-player minded gamers out there, there will be plenty of story content to get through as well, with seven different quest varieties on offer including those of the typical fetch and hunt variety. Currently the game is being localised to cut out the more ‘grindier’ activities and characters will be able to level at to 65 at launch which should take players around two months to achieve.
Eligium was only announced at last month’s gamescom so a lot of the finer details are still yet to be announced for this traditional looking MMORPG, yet we still really liked the look of it. We suspect all types of players will find something to their liking here as there are so many different gameplay elements to pick and choose from. Take mounts for instance, you’ll even be keep entire menageries’ worth, accessible from the game’s litany of sub-menus and your character will be able to fight whilst never leading the saddle. It’s a small but very cool inclusion which nicely sums up what this title is all about; chucking in as many features as possible to keep a variety of MMO tastes happy.
Eligium is expected to go into closed beta during Q1 2012 and we suspect you’ll hear plenty more about it before then.
Tags: Eligium The Chosen One
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