Myth War is a 2D MMORPG being published by IGG.com. It can best be described as a pet-oriented, cel-shaded game that encourages teamwork with other players. This was the first of three (soon to be four) completely free games from the company, which makes money by selling various items in an item mall for real world money. With all of this in mind, I wanted to take a look at the game as a whole.
The graphics of Myth War area little dated, but still very unique for this genre of games. Only one MMORPG came to market featuring cel-shading and it barely lasted outside the first month of release. The environments are done in an isometric perspective which makes it look and feel 3D without actually being 3D. One flaw with this though is that the camera is no controllable by the player so you are stuck viewing things how the developer wants you to. Also, the combat is completely 2D turn-based leaving everything feeling a little flat.
The gameplay of Myth War though is far from flat. There are four races with both male and female being selectable. What is not told to you though during the creation process is that your sex determines your class. Males are typically attack oriented (through melee or ranged attacks) while females are focused on defensive measures (like healing and buffing). Crafting is possible by gathering gems which can then be refined and used to enhance equipment in a variety of ways. This is not really crafting so much as enhancing equipment, but it keeps things focused on the combat and not material gathering. Combat, while turn-based, is very quick and requires knowledge of ones own character and the enemies being face to make quick work of them or face certain death. There is a tutorial available in the starting area as well, teaching new players everything they need to know about fighting and their class. My biggest gripe would have to be the rebirth system, which grants a very substantial power boost to those who reach the highest levels once through and can then try again with a different class and more power. This makes it a bit harder to level through the first time but gives players something to strive for.
Some would look at the audio as something a 1990s action game composer would use. I tend to look at it as something fitting the whole theme and feel of the game. Music plays everywhere and matches the tone set. Combat is a quicker, more frantic music accompanied by sound effects that depend on what skills and weapons are being used. This may not win any awards for having the best sound in a game, but it far better than some of the other games that are being brought to the market today.
One of the most important aspects for any MMORPG is the community. While I wish I could say that this was the best community ever .I cannot. On the bright side, it is one of the better ones as players were more than happy to answer any questions I had. Some would even role play with you if you got into character and found the right conditions. As with any MMO community, there were spammers, jerks and other assorted people that you wish you could punch right in the face. The GMs do a fairly good job at handling any complaints about this when it happens though, so it is not something to worry about.
Performance of the game is one of the weak areas, though this may have been addressed already or will be soon. Lag was prevalent over each of the four servers, and cannot be attributed to system lag on my end as I have a fairly high-end rig. Hopefully this can be taken care of swiftly by making adjustments to the network code or to the server capacity. Considering this is a free game though, one just cannot expect it to run perfectly smooth.
All in all, Myth War is a solid game that everyone should take a look at. While they are not the developers, if they apply this talent for picking a good game to their games in development we can expect a lot of great things out of them. And hey, the game is free so why not spend a little time downloading the game and playing. You may just find your newest addiction!