- Release Date: January 15, 2012
- Publisher: R2Games
- Developer: R2Games
- Genre: MMORPG
Broken Realm (Broken Realm: A Crystal Saga Chronicle) is a free to play browser-based MMORPG from R2Games, widely known to publish browser games such as Wartune, Crystal Saga, and Castlot. The game was announced in December 11, 2012, and the closed beta is expected to launch later 2012, or early 2013.
In September 2011, R2Games presented an anime style MMORPG Crystal Saga for web browsers, altering the way people play traditional MMORPGs through the digital download. While Crystal Saga can be accessed with no download and installation, that was a wondrous achievement that recaptures player’s enthusiasm to MMO.
In July 2012, the HuNan-based company rolled out the hybrid browser game Wartune, which despite many issues and old-fashioned graphics, managed to open over 80 servers in North America. Over the two years, R2Games has grown up and into a big platform with over 500 Million users.
Recently, R2Games has teased us with a new sequel to Crystal Saga titled “Broken Realm”, which completely differs from Crystal Saga in graphics and storyline, but shares many similarities with the original. This time, players will join the ranks of ruthless Prince Rycroft to defend the king’s throne against those rivals and bring peace to the corrupted realm.
In Broken Realm, players can not only choose the basic four classes: Paladin, Barbarian, Archer and Mage, but they can also access plenty of sub-classes. For example, If players choose play the melee Barbarian, they will play with a selection of sub-classes like Berserker, Lord or Veteran.
In addition, the game also employs the formula of “Infuse”, which allows players to use the Gem, or Spirit Stone to enhance the attack. One highlight that should be mentioned here is the “Malacris, an epic weapon that can be forged through materials!
Broken Realm is a completely re-skinned game from Crystal Saga, devoid of innovation and grandness. It is too often monotonous and frustrating, and ends up in failure.
First of all, the game doesn’t introduce anything new at all. It offers the pretty familiar experience: players go around the world, visit various small maps, kill some monsters of the same type, and meet with hundreds of or even thousands of identical characters. Actually, it is difficult to find any major difference in gameplay between Broken Realm and Crystal Saga.
The game is generous in that players can obtain mounts, pets and wings free of charge. The wings, in my case, were rewarded after I reached level 30 and then finished a few quests. However, all those things are free for a good reason. They all look cheap. And you have to spend real money to upgrade them or just get superior ones.
Since the game provides multiple area maps and the navigating is automatic in most cases, players will have to go through various maps before they arrive at a destination. Maps in Broken Realm all look unique with different themes. So you will see grand structures in town, snow-covered pine trees in the wilderness, and distinctive creatures in each scenario. Perhaps, they might be the only thing good in the game.
Graphics are always in a blur, and to make things worse, all the characters and the texts are all very small and there are still Chinese characters in the system notifications. Wherever your avatar is, you will always find groups of monsters or characters that have names or titles over their heads. That is meant to help identify targets and players, of course. But when such names appear in messy crowds, it becomes hard to find the one you need to pay attention to. And that happens a lot.
Even when you ignore all the visual setbacks, you cannot enjoy the game either. For one thing, it keeps you grinding. That does not necessarily mean side quests or daily quests. The storyline quests themselves deal with tens of monsters of the same type over and over again. That is to say, after you’ve done taking down 15 Arctic Wolves, you will be asked to kill 12 of them again to obtain specific weapons, and then dozens of them to gather enough wolf hair. It can be an incredibly grinding and boring experience.
Nevertheless, it won’t take long before you realize it can be a blessing if one is allowed to do grinding quests. After one reaches level 30, and a few quests later, the only available mission cannot be accepted anyway. Also, players of level 30 or higher wouldn’t be able to chat in the world channel or claim the online rewards. What’s more, the World Bosses and training tower that are allegedly available around the clock are not opened up at all. The could be the worst closed beta ever, a good match to newly launched Chrono Tales beta.
The cheap-looking wings, however, are not easy to get somehow. I didn’t know how I got one until a quest asked me to upgrade the wings. But some players just didn’t have them. And wherever I met someone else, they always asked me how to get wings. In fact, that is also bugged occasionally.
All the events and quests were unavailable and therefore, the developers shut down the test server for maintenance on the very first day the test is launched. And by now, those glitches have been fixed. But anyway, it is kind of ridiculous.
And the game doesn’t add any appeals through the battles. The tiny dungeons where only a few mobs and a boss which is good for nothing except the fact that it has a much larger maximum health than you or your pet. Therefore, the dungeons where the game indicates one can join or create a party are disappointingly passable for single players.
Besides the map exploring and grinding monster killing, Broken Realm does offer several ways to relish the real-time battles. For example, one can explore the Eternal Abyss by themselves and join a party to climb the training tower, both of which offer waves of monsters that get increasingly tough. And the funny thing is you can get exactly the same experience in Wartune.
That is what Broken Realm is all about – common gameplay and unique glitches. And a few patches wouldn’t be of much help.
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