Last Thursday marked the Open Beta of Devilian, an action-RPG MMO, similar in design to the genre-defining Diablo series. I would have written about it sooner, but I play tabletop games on Saturdays, so step off, yo.
Created by Bluehole Studios, the minds behind the popular korean MMO Tera, players hack and slash through dungeons and open-world segments to collect powerful gear and refine their skills. The player can also harness the power of their inner demonic blood, shifting into their Devilian forms, offering new skills and gameplay mechanics. Imagine Diablo III, but make it an MMO with a mighty morphin’ power demon form; it’s quite similar to that thought.
I had the luck to stumble into this game on the day they opened the beta and have played to about level 20, so while I won’t say anything on later levels, this will mainly be about my experience. The core gameplay is very much an action-RPG, tearing through hordes of monsters for gold and goodies with big, flashy skills that are very satisfying to use. However, you notice almost immediately after leaving the tutorial dungeon that questing is just as lame as it’s ever been. “Deliver x to y, kill x creatures, deliver y pork butts,” gets really old almost immediately. Granted the leveling went by quickly and I never felt stuck in one area for too long, it was still repetitive missions you only felt like doing for rewards.
The classes so far are a quaint four, each with three differing skill trees that give the players an opportunity to fine tune their base class to their preferences:
- The Berserker, Melee AoE and tanking
- The Evoker, Ranged AoE damage spells
- The Shadowhunter, Melee single-target/AoE DPS and battlefield control
- The Cannoneer, Ranged Battlefield Control
Every class also has access to a powerful demonic form previously mentioned called a Devilian form. While offering powerful new skills and abilities unique to their Devilian forms, the transformation is temporary and must be leveled up separately from your normal class, which hasn’t given me too many problems so far, but sounds like a potential headache.
So what does Devilian have going for it? Well, not many action-RPG MMOs exist, making Devilian unique in the sense of belonging to a rare breed of game. The artwork is also great, being both wonderfully drawn and possessing that eastern attitude of “we draw sexy people because they are sexy, deal with it.” Unfortunately, those don’t really transfer into the game too well, as you only catches glimpses of the artwork on loading screens and the in-game sex appeal just comes off as silly, especially when an NPC is jiggling all over the screen mid-story exposition.
So, I know I’ve been kinda ragging on Devilian, and it definitely has its shortcomings, but if you’re a fan of action-RPGs like Diablo and Path of Exile, Devilian is worth checking out. Devilian has a lot of social elements to it and even sports a large 20v20 PvP arena and open world PvP mechanics, making player interaction a very prominent feature. After all, an MMO without other people just makes for a very lonely game, no?
Also, last complaint, but the game features kobolds early on. In most modern media, kobolds are little lizard people, but Devilian features them as bipedal humanoid dogs.
Those are Gnolls, Bluehole. Gnolls are dog people, kobolds are mini-dragon people. Yeah, exceptions exist, but you’re just mixing them up with another established fantasy monster genus. This is 2015, yo. there’s no room for originality anymore. Stick to the book, guys.
What? No I’m not being held at gunpoint or anything. The hell are y-