Dragon Oath Review: Without A Doubt You Should Try It
By Kei Beneza (dividelife), OnRPG Journalist
Dragon Oath is a relatively young, enjoyable MMORPG set in the world of Ancient China. Most of the characters and elements revolve around Buddhist Mythology, which is not that new at some point but still caters well to most MMO fans. The game is widely played around the world, with millions of subscribers who have played and loved the game since its Chinese debut back in 2007.
Now I would think that MMOs with great caliber usually make it outside their exclusive phase, so much like any other MMO, I was actually looking forward to playing this. The game was different from what I had expected. If you think about it, Dragon Oath does sound more like a Medieval Role Playing Game than a dynasty-themed one. At a first glance, there was nothing new regarding the game’s interface. I saw a bunch of familiar looking elements (the life bar and the shortcut menu looks a lot like those of other games), which isn’t supposed to bother me much, but the resemblance was just uncanny. Jumping in, let’s see what else we should expect from this game.
Starting up: what to choose?
Unlike the most up to date MMOs, Dragon Oath does not let you pick your class until you surpass the newbie levels (level 1-9). One surprising factor regarding this game would be the excellent array of classes. This is perhaps something I have not encountered with other games using that uses the same theme and concept. The classes are as follows: Lotus order, Shaolin, Pyromancer, Assassin, Voo doo, Taoist, Minstrel, Royalty, and the Beggars alliance. The amount of classes in the game is enough to build a healthy game community.
Dragon Oath Classes
Each class has their own unique builds and playstyle, which (on my part) makes each class less tiring to play. Some depend entirely on their own buffs due to their low damage, while others focus on sheer damage to make up for their lack of stamina. You’ll definitely have a lot of fun experimenting, as this games makes repetitive actions a bit much less repetitive.
What to expect?
I think it’s better if we start with the good features first. First of all, the game has a number of quests that will probably keep you busy for a long time. Most of them are courier quests but that does beat the probability of having to grind for experience once you get tired of them.
Grinding quests can be found in almost every quest-based MMO game. I guess you could say that the grinding can be done without the benefit of having to do quests, so I guess they just added more non-grinding quests to compensate for the massive inevitable MMO grinding. It’s just part of the game and necessary to try out your class – or all classes – which in this game is not such a bad idea at all. Apart from that all gear can be improved by inlaying them with special items and mystic gems, increasing the bonuses unique to each set.
The Dragon Oath game community is not the only thing you should look forward to. The game is updated regularly as well, which is probably the reason why the game has a lot of followers. You should definitely expect something new to come your way every now and then, as the game hosts challenging and fun events regularly. You can try out your ingame knowledge with the Imperial Test, or engage in a class battle or the Kung Fu Arena competitions. Excellent community support I must say.
Dragon Oath Combat Pets
The game also has a good variety of armor sets and clothes for your character to try on. The pet system is not really that new in the gaming environment, but Dragon Oath has made it simple and fun to take a pet along with you while questing and grinding. There are up to 70 pets to choose from, each with their own personality. Pets are able to learn many abilities either from growing stronger or finding trainers all over the world. So you can experiment even further to combine their abilities with your particular playstyle.
The best part of the game is its broad scope of activities. It’s already hard to be bored while playing your character, but the game has given us more stuff to ponder on. It’s really awesome that your character isn’t limited to just fighting; instead, a player can indulge himself in cooking, tailoring, fishing, and other various activities. This is a feature mostly found in P2P (pay to play) games. To actually have this feature worked out in such detail in a F2P (free to play) game is divine, in my opinion. I suppose Dragon Oath has earned itself a lot of points already… but now, we go to the bad part.
DUNN DUNNN DUNNNNNNNN!
Although the game has a lot of flawless features, it does have some elements that pull it towards the opposite direction. The first part would be the awkward camera controls. I understand that the game respects an isometric bird’s eye view, but the scrolling is just awkward. In fact, it’s so awkward that it makes it hard for you to admire the view on certain occasions.
Another factor that most gamers didn’t approve is the game’s control scheme. The controls are just too tight, in a sense wherein pushing 2 buttons at the same time doesn’t give the effect you might probably be expecting (directions). Since the camera is quite awkward, I myself chose the mouse option to just scroll about without getting pissed off. Unfortunately the camera functionality and the controls prevented me from becoming totally immersed into this game – while the setting and gameplay have all the requirements to become totally absorbed.
Combat in Dragon Oath
Graphics and Interface
There’s nothing special, yet nothing too bad about the visuals. As I have stated earlier, the game runs on an isometric bird’s eye view perspective. The backgrounds are very nice but the camera makes it too awkward to move and admire them. You get a good view of the diverse soil patterns! Basically, I wish I could have admired the view from a better angle. Overall, spells look nice, and the characters are well-designed. The game has very diverse gear and armor sets that would be enough to satisfy anyone’s lust for MMO fashion!
Although the game has a few more features that could be corrected, I can’t say that the flaws were enough to degrade this awesome game. Lineage II had far worse (controls) in my opinion, and was still majorly successful. That means this game has every potential for that as well. The controls aren’t really that bad, just rather awkward in my opinion. It’s something you could get used to with some practice. Despite these conditions, Dragon Oath is an awesome game with plenty of versatility, great environments and fun elements to experiment with. Definitely something you would want to try.
– There is a large, friendly game community
– It has frequent updates and events for members
– Interesting content and bosses
– Nice economic balance within the game.
– Awkward camera angels
– Tight controls for movement.