by Rick Charbs, Onrpg writer
Nexus, the kingdom of the Winds (or Nexus TK for short), is a classic MMORPG released by NEXON in 1997 for gamers outside of Korea, and in 2005 by the US branch of NEXON that then changed their name to Kru Interactive. Kru Interactive has been running the game ever since, and takes certain pride in their current titles. Nexus TK is a very immersive MMORPG that it almost completely player-run. Players control the economy, the events and activities, even the classes to a certain degree. This game relies strongly on player interaction, more precisely role-play, but it is not required to enjoy the game. It is set in ancient Korea, and has a very specific, yet ever-changing storyline. The atmosphere this MMORPG brings truly engulfs a player in the game’s unique gameplay and environments. This is one of the very few unique games I’ve played and thoroughly enjoyed.
NexusTK is host to a very tightly-knit community. Seeing as this game completely relies on community and player’s participation, this is a big plus. Whilst only seeing a high of 500-600 players online a day, this game still makes you feel like you are a part of something huge. One of the most amusing aspects of this MMORPG is the role-play events. They consist in various (100+ different kinds) events organised solely by players. There are special boards in-game that allow you to read up on these events, and they also tell you where and when to meet the host(s) to begin the event. They can be simple games of tag, Simon says, hide and go seek …you name it! Of course, these events are all conducted with strict role-playing rules, although some players allow non-role-players to participate as well. There are also regular storyline events, which are fully controlled by staff role-players, who take on the role of various characters from the NexusTK storyline. You can assist the story real-time; it is an innovative form of entertainment! These particular events usually end with the release of a longer term event that is related to the storyline you had just assisted. The next staff event will depend on what players accomplish in that current event. These truly immerse you into the game; you really are the one who decides what will happen next in the story.
The non-role-playing aspect of the game is like your average 2D MMORPG, although the crafting systems and party battling is extremely fun. You can even participate in non-role-play events such as the Fox Hunt and the Carnage, two activities that rely on your speed and cunning to beat the enemy team (they are similar to capture the flag). I will assure you though; you do not need to role-play in this game to enjoy yourself. There are so many quests to accomplish, dungeons to explore in, and items to equip that you will have a great time adventuring alone or with friends. You really have to learn to enjoy the style though, as it is hard to get used to.
Graphics and Sound
NexusTK has gone through a few minor and one major graphical change since its release in 1997 (1996 for the Korean audience). Despite the updates, one still has to understand the classic value this game has, and that the graphics are not so amazing to your average next-gen gamer. They are very simplistic and 2D, yet very lush and colourful. I personally love the graphical style of this game. Another plus is that even though the game’s sprites have a slight anime feel to them, you can customize your character to look less anime styled if you wish. The environments in the game are alright, but some tiles are re-used and re-colored. Some monsters were re-colored as well, but it was not overdone.
NexusTK’s various background music pieces were all very nice. They were all appropriate to the game’s setting (expect some Korean instrumentals). The sound effects, however, were a little obnoxious, but you can simply mute those if they get on your nerves. There is not really anything to complain about in terms of sound though, especially for such an old game.
To start this section off, I would like to quickly say that this game was one of my favorite ones out there. I’d also like to add that I am not much of a role-player. This game was simply so unique that it caught my eye as soon as I started playing. I was compelled to the storyline, and the community was really great. You are never bored in this game. If you get sick and tired of questing or grinding, all you have to do is check the community boards and head out to a player event. I had lots of fun in every event that I had participated in, and won a few nifty prizes as well. I also found this MMO to really give me a creative boost. I was writing so much (poetry, lore, and role-play) for the various contests and player events I had participated in. That’s right; an artist can make money by simply writing or drawing in this MMO. Needless to say, I was never really hunting for gold.
I was also very interested with the crafting and quest systems this game had to offer. Most of the quests you have to activate yourself by talking to NPCS (actually typing), and so I had a lot of fun trying to solve the puzzles and mysteries behind the quests as I gained more insight about the game. If you do not mind paying to play an MMO, and you like to role-play, or are searching for a unique MMO, try this game out. You will not regret it, and I am positive you will enjoy the players within the game as well as the endless amounts of activities and contests in the game. Happy gaming!
– great community
– thorough role-play
– compelling storyline
– player run game (classes, quests, economy)
– HUGE customization
– You have to pay to play
– Not many players in-game
– Can be time consuming