Lands of Hope Review: There Is Hope For This One
By Vincent Haoson (Vincenthaoson), OnRPG Journalist
Lands of Hope is a browser based game that centers around the world of Myzan, a land torn in strife and conflict as the ruling king was deposed from his throne. Your story in all this is that you are a traveler trying to make do with everything that is happening around.
Lands of Hope's gameplay is similar to RPGs of old. Everything is done by point and clicking, from moving around the map down to fighting monsters and PVPing. The game uses the typical gameplay system and has nothing new or revolutionary to offer the genre. Given that the system used by Lands of Hope is old-school RPG, one would expect that a browser-based game of this kind would surely be a time-consuming game especially when you move around the map. However, the game plays fast for a browser based game. There is minimal to no refresh time whenever you click on a tile in the map, which means you are immediately placed where you clicked. This can be quite unnerving and surprising for those who have already made a preconceived idea about the game like me.
On the other hand, Lands of Hope's battle system takes on a different pace as the movements because it is turn based. The game's fast -to-almost-no refresh rate really shines through in the battle system because you won't have to wait that long to see what happens after you act.
I would have to say, Land of Hope's interface is one of the best I've seen in a browser based game. The game maximizes every available space in the given area unlike in some browser based games where you would get larger chunks of black areas because there's nothing on it. Also, the game has extensively used graphics and images in the interface that you would never really have a problem understanding what you see. This makes the game newbie friendly too.
The interface already has everything you would need without making you open another browser. You would have the map the battles the guides and the shoutbox already in the interface. If you would want to send a private message to someone in the shoutbox just click the person's box and the actions interface found on the upper center area would immediately change into the message system.
I really must say that I am totally impressed with Land of Hope's interface. Not only is everything given to you with just a click of the mouse, the interface is tailored to make players enjoy the game without going through the usual muck of sifting through a lot of browsers.You can even change the color theme of your interface. However, the choices are kind of limited but it does make the game a little less serious and a little more fun so to speak.
Job classes and leveling
When it comes to game classes, Lands of Hope has your staple set of job classes that you would usually find in any other MMO. You have the melee, the range and the magic users that you can choose and there's the special Gladiator class for those who are Hungry for some PvP. There is one job class that you wouldn't normally see in a browser game and that is the Apprentice class. This class is the non-combat class and is designed for crafting.
Under normal circumstances, browser games don't have the crafter class in their job classes because one would expect that no one would use such a class especially in browser based games.Also, the game is surprisingly easy to level. You can reach level 100 in less than three days if you know your way around the game and play it straight through. Your character also goes through three stages of job class advancement however, paid players and those who are using the Gladiator class would only experience.
The Apprentice job class is Land of Hope's attempt on going outside of the box and introducing a job class and playing style that is not normally used in browser based games. We're accustomed in seeing different job classes that are combat oriented. The only variation these job classes have is that the type of offensive or defensive style they're using and the stat growth. This is normal in browser based games because one would expect that it's going to be hard to level in browser games without battling. However, the Apprentice class introduces what we would normally see in MMOs as a class that does not battle. It can never equip armors or weapons and it doesn't have any offensive skills whatsoever. The Apprentice class only has gathering and crafting as its skills.
If you would put this job class in the MMO perspective the variety of ways a player of this class can level is through leeching of a party, killing monsters on his or her own or crafting to earn experience points. Lands of Hope uses the third option as its way of earning experience points for the job class.The game is right to suggest that this job class is for experienced players only because being an Apprentice is a tedious class to use. An apprentice would really have to know the game because you would need the know-how to where to get those materials you would need. Plus, add the fact that gathering can be a boring thing to do especially in a browser based game.
Difference of Paid and Free
In every browser game there would always be an issue when it comes to money. Lands of Hope, regardless of whatever merits it has still needs money to make the game run. The game has various perks when it comes to players who are willing to spend a buck. The first and most prominent of which is the level cap. Paid players can level up to a thousand while those who are playing for free are stuck at level one hundred.There is an alternative for players who opt to play the game for free and want to experience reaching up to level one thousand. The Gladiator class enables non-paid players to reach level one thousand with the setback of having a more difficult route.Paid players can purchase extras which unlocks extra professions, extra character slots and of course the premium items for your characters.Lands of Hope also has expansions where the purchaser will be given more maps and dungeons to explore. As of this writing there's about five expansions you can choose from and the theme varies from pirates to the Jurassic era.
I really must say that Lands of Hope exceeds a lot of my expectations. This is the first ever browser game that I have experienced that puts something more than just "exp booster" in its premium item shop. Also, the game seems to have been taken care of the admin quite well.The game has a lot of things done nicely, from the job class, to the interface and so on. To be quite honest, if I were to choose any other browser game out there to spend my buck on, it would be Lands of Hope.
- The interface is very well done
- Traveling in the game is a breeze
- Everything you would need is just a click away.
- The interface may overwhelm those who are not used to an interface like this
- Non-paid players can only reach a certain level
- Majority of the gameplay is premium.