Review by Dekar0
Perfect, but not quite.
Intro: Sword of the New World: Granado Espada is Free to Play and has the potential to be one of the best MMORPGs there ever was. Sword (SotNW) takes place around the 1400's, when exploration of the New World was beginning. The storyline does not use actual countries as points of origin but there are obvious analogies to that of Spain, England, Africa, and more.
Starting Out 8/10: There is a short tutorial where you can learn the basics of the game and it is indeed helpful if nothing else. You will learn about MCC, Families, trading, and more.
Gameplay 9/10: SotNW takes advantage of a fairly new system that combines RPG with Strategy, this is called MCC, or Multi Character Control. Instead of playing one character you actually can control up to three, your team is known as a Family. This makes the game very different than others. You can have your own tank, own healer, and own DPS if you choose, or go old style and team up with other families for different roles.
Music and Sound 10/10: Sword without a doubt has by far the best score of music I have ever witnessed in all my gaming years. Currently there are 151 different background songs for you to enjoy as you trek about in the New World. I am quite sure more will be added as well. Each area has approximately three different songs, and, with the "Jukebox" feature, you can control what you listen to. Many of skill sounds and voices are unique and fun to listen to as well. Most versions of Granado Espada use a different set of voices for characters which makes them all different and interesting.
Visual 10/10: Visually, the game is amazing and one of the most seductive looking games you will ever witness. From the players, to the costumes, to the attacks, buffs, monsters, scenery, it all looks quite fascinating.
Grinding 7/10: As many MMO players know, grinding can ruin games and make them boring very quickly. SotNW can be somewhat boring at times once you reach Veteran status (level 100+) because to become even stronger you must grind to Expert status (level 110+). However, leveling from 1-100 is actually quite easy and takes less than 2 months for the average player. Sword also takes advantage of a fairly unique leveling system that involves being AFK. There are several modes of attack, the most loved being the fabled "defend" mode. With defend mode, you can usually AFK within your means and still level up fairly quickly. This factor boosts the Grinding score from 5 to 7 out of 10.
Cash Shop: 7/10: Sword uses a cash shop system that allows players to purchase in game items with the use of real money. Many of the special UPCs (Unique Player Character) must be obtained with cash shop items. While this upsets many members, I believe it is easily understandable that a free game still needs money to operate. However, many of the cash shop items are able to be traded and can be bought from other players with Vis (the Sword currency) if you choose to do so. Certain items that are not able to be traded such as AA (Ancient Area) passes are highly sought after because they enable players to level very fast. Grinding to Expert without taking advantage of the AA is a long long path that many do not wish to walk.
Raiding 8/10: Raiding in general is not terribly difficult although at times it can be. Several raid bosses are found in mass PvP zones which adds a competitive element to the PvE portion of the game. Places like Poison Yard and Secret Temple which are generally for high level players take advantage of these interesting events. Some bosses require special items or other things to summon. Sekhmet for example is the Fire Island raid boss and I don't believe anyone has ever summoned, let alone defeated him.
Closure 8/10: All in all, Sword of the New World is an extremely fun and unique game. With some changes it could be one of the best, however I am unsure of these changes and we will all probably end up having to adapt to things as they are.
By: The Duskes Family - Bristia
Rating: 4.0 - Great
Product Release: Sword of the New World: Granado Espada (US, 07/12/07)
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