By Rick Charbs (Jammart), OnRPG Journalist
One of the most attractive elements of an MMORPG is the various choices of races, classes, skills, weapons, armours, mount and, well…you name it! The most successful games out there usually feature a wide array of possibilities for you to be able to create a character that is completely unique-I mean it is one of the main factors of the MMORPG environment.
Mind you, all MMORPGS feature different types of customization that appeal to different audiences. Some games have lots of classes to choose from, some have various races, and some use systems that allow you to allocate skills without the restriction of a class. Furthermore, some games have avatars that do not change in appearance with use of different equipment, whereas some have extensive variation in one character to the next. With either situation in mind, it has always been necessary for game developers to attract gamers with their various systems and their customization value.
This article will explore a few of these systems with three games at hand: International Ragnarok Online, Perfect World International, as well as Mabinogi.
iRO: International Ragnarok Online
Ragnarok Online has been a huge hit ever since 2003! It has been officially released in over 13 countries, all being virtuous successes. There are more and more free versions of this game being hosted by the official providers, only with slight limitations such as a lower exp rate.
What makes iRO so popular in terms of character customization is its unique character class system. Being one of the 2.5D MMORPGS with the most featured classes worldwide, this game practically stands out without any effort. The developers of RO had a keen intellect; they knew what players wanted… and that was a game that had tons of classes to choose from. Currently, iRO hosts a total of 39 classes branching off from the 6 first job classes. They also plan to keep adding more: the Korean version of the game is testing the release of the third job class, which would add another 6 possible classes to advance to!
Ragnarok Online really excels in the character class department. You are given with tons of choices to then create the perfect character for your tastes; they all play very differently. That set aside, Ragnarok never accommodated players who wish to look different with the use of different armors and weapons. Each job class features a new look (which still provides a lot of different looks) and helmets/hat equipment do affect the look of your character, though no other equipment will. That being said, you’ll still rarely find a character completely similar to your own due to the fact that there are so many character classes with different looks, and there are many helmets and head accessories to choose from to customize your appearance in-game.
Perfect World International
Perfect World has a much different class system than Ragnarok Online that greatly affects its customization value. Much more based on races over classes, Perfect World has severe limitations on what class you can play as per race type. Totalling six classes, only two classes per race are provided for players. However, this by no means marks this MMO with bad customization. As a matter of fact, Perfect World is known as the most customizable free to play MMORPG out there; it even has more customization than most P2P MMORPGS.
During the character creation process, you are given countless amounts of options to make your character unique with precision. Never will you spot a character that looks identical to yours, even though the armor and weapon choices are so few. There are three basic types of armor that all classes and races are able to use provided that they meet the stat requirements to equip them (that being heavy, light, and magic armor). As for weapons, there is one specific type of weapon per class, although some weapon types have a little variety. For instance, the archers have bows yet they can also use crossbows and slingshots if they wish. Nevertheless, Perfect World truly proves that classes are not all there is to character customization, and well, Mabinogi takes this to a whole new level by depleting the notion of classes completely.
Mabinogi has a multitude of very effective systems that ensure your originality within the game. As previously mentioned, there are no classes, and thus no restrictions in terms of skills and abilities. One can choose to play more varied characters. This means your character will most likely have a skill set completely unique to it, if you don’t follow a guide that is.
Another interesting fact about the game is that you age weekly, changing your appearance by making your character look more mature. A large scaled recent update also introduced races to the game, allowing players to choose from elves, giants, and humans.
Lastly, Mabinogi has an extensive equipment library that pretty much guarantees the uniqueness of your character. With tons of different equipment dye able in virtually any color of your liking, you’ll be faced with thousands of possibilities to enhance your character’s looks.
These three MMORPGS are only some of the leading games in terms of customization. There are many others on the market as is truly a high demand feature. Consequently, the developers Ragnarok Online, Perfect World, and Mabinogi all have a wonderful perspective on gaming and they have provided us with wonderful MMOS that allow us to express ourselves through completely unique alternate egos. I have to say that I truly loved the customization in all three of these games even though I was not necessarily too inclined to playing them all otherwise. If you are looking into finding a game that fills your customization needs, these three are a great start. Happy Gaming!