by Joshua Temblett, Onrpg writer
Dofus has had a long life (it was released back in 2005) and stood very proud and tall against the backdrop of the depressing Free to Play market. This title stood as an example of how if you break conventions in a saturated genre, you can still achieve success. Dofus featured tactical battles, a wonderful art style and a lot of depth when it was first released. Does Dofus still hold up against much more developed MMORPGs, or has old age taken its toll against the title?
Dofus’s story is rather unique. Whilst there is not really much story in the game itself, the background to the game is interesting. The tale goes, there was an evil dragon, Balgrot, which came to Amakna. Rykke Errel stood up to the dragon, and because of this the dragon swore loyalty to him. Rykke then feel deeply in love with a young enchantress called Helsephine. Rykke showed the dragon his new found love, but then the dragon got mad and killed Helsephine.
Rykke swore revenge and tried to take down the mighty dragon and he succeeded. However, the battle left him with a very deep wound and he died shortly after the battle. After Rykke’s death the wise men gathered and found six eggs inside the dead dragon’s body, these eggs were called “Dofus”. The wise men tried to keep the eggs away from the rest of the world, however one day they found that the eggs had been stolen. News went out about the theft and everyone began searching for them. And that’s where you come in; you have got to find the six Dofus eggs. As you can tell the story is basic, however it does provide a nice reason to pay for players who feel that they need some sort of motivation in order to play the MMORPG.
Dofus is a 2D MMORPG, however this is definitely not a bad thing. Dofus’s hand drawn graphics are simply amazing to look at. You can see that a lot of effort and time has gone into the very artistic looking backgrounds which, whilst they may be still and unmoving, can be utterly jaw breaking when you get to certain places in the game. The avatars you control don’t really compare with the beautiful backgrounds, however they suit the game with their slightly anime feel and their fluent and entertaining animations. The sounds are also well done, despite being “midis”, most of them are chirpy and upbeat compositions however there isn’t any truly inspiration music in here but it does achieve its job and represents the game’s world very well.
Gameplay wise, Dofus is brilliant. There is a lot to do, with the crafting system being particularly fun. The battles are tactical and definitely one of the strongest points of the game. The battles are turn based grid battles, with each character taking turns to move and then attack. The battle system works well and suits the game. The only problem is that anyone can attack you during battles, which might become a bit of a problem if you do enjoy PVE and really do not like the PVP aspect of games.
Despite that though the game works well and is generally fun to play and with a whole host of classes available there is something for everyone and not only are there a lot of classes there are also plenty of skills for your character to learn. Quests do however seem a tad unrewarding at times and sometimes you can find yourself confused about what to do next (this could be due to the huge scale of things available , which can become a bit overwhelming), however when you do know where you are going the game is incredibly fun.
Dungeons are definitely the highlight of this game which of course is because of the fluid and original battle system. Nothing can beat joining a big party and taking down a hoard of enemies.
Whilst the core gameplay is fun the community that plays beside you is less so and overall ruins the general experience. There are a lot of annoying idiots in this game, and that is polite vast understatement. Players will sometimes attack you during battle for no reason no matter what class you are, and yes even if you are a healer.
The community is particularly mean on the free server available and during the starter sections, and whilst there are some nice players among this mess of a community, the game is full up of people whom really do not have anything better to do than ruin your experience and unfortunately there is no way to ignore these people as they will pop up everywhere. The community can either make or break a game, and in this case it breaks the title. Never before have I seen such a bad gathering of players. I must warn you, be prepared for the worst when playing this game.
Dofus is unfortunate, it’s a title with a very strong core and features addictive gameplay, good design and artwork however the community makes this game experience less fun and more annoying as you’ll constantly be bombarded with wave upon wave of imbeciles who will vastly affect just how much fun with you have with this game. Despite its pitfall that is the populace, I definitely recommend that you try this title just so that you can evaluate your own stance on MMORPGs and because the core gameplay is so well glued together it would be a shame to miss out.
You will need to pay to play if you want to experience much of what this title has to offer, however there is a free to play section which allows you to decide whether or not this game is your cup of tea. No matter how you find it, playing this game is an experience (be it positive or negative) and can really put things in perspective for you.
A must play.