Dark Swords Review- Ultimate 2006 Browser Game
by: Kei Beneza (dividelife), Onrpg Journalist
Dark Swords is a free-to-play pseudo browser-based MMORPG that takes place in a Tolkien fantasy world of Orcs, Elves, and Dwarves. The reason why I strongly disagree with the game being called a browser game is that the it requires you to both download and install the Dark Sword client before you can play the game. Browser based game enthusiasts will be quite familiar with how the game is played, as it functions a lot like a browser MMO rather than a client-based game. Launched in late 2006, Dark Swords Online has provided players with a great mixture of roleplaying goodness and an innovative character building system similar to tabletop RPGs. The game has also been supportive of its playerbase, constantly coming up with patches and fixes to further enhance the Dark Sword experience.
Creating Your Character
Creating a character in Dark Swords is quite easy as it's bundled with the game's registration phase to let players jump into the game as soon as they finish downloading the 4 mb client. It also has a nice lineup of races, each with their own specialty and racial bonuses.
The Races are as follows: Human, Dwarf, Elf, Orc, and Drow (Dark Elves)
After choosing your race, you will be opted to edit your stats, allowing you to futher customize your character to fit your playstyle. There's also a huge selection of character portraits for you to choose from.
After picking my starting town, I was suprised at how broad the game was. Normally, browser based MMORPGs consist of 'click-and-duel' PVP systems, limited RPG capabilities, and random grinding, but not Dark Swords. There's just so much to do in this game, and I guarantee that players won't be stuck doing the same mundane tasks. What really caught my attention was how "normal" characters can be in this game. Imagine, suffering from infectious diseases than can be caught by various circumstances like killing monsters and drinking infected water. It's also amazing that each of these annoying ailments have stages and symptoms which allow players to keep track of the illness while finding a cure to prevent the disease from getting worse. There's also the religion system which sort of guides your characters actions depending on which religion you choose.
I still think that Dark Swords system is one of the best ones out there. What makes it even more amazing is that the game has been around since 2006.
So far, the only thing I don't like about this game is the lack of tutorials. Even if you go to the main site and read all the articles, it's still hard to get used to the game. The FAQ page does a good job of explaining what the features are but is rather poor at explaining how they work or how to use them. I honestly had to spend a couple of hours just learning to navigate the city, which is still a bit faster than most people, thanks to a couple of veterans who helped me learn the basics.
Anyway, browser game fans are sure to have their hands full with Dark Swords Online. It's broad, fast paced, and in my opinion, a whole lot better than most of its RPG counterparts. Whether you're looking for PVP, PVE, or just a good role-playing experience, then download the game and start adventuring.
-Visuals are still better than other browser games
-Tons of PVP
-Lack of tutorials
-A bit TOO broad for the average player
-Steep learning curve.