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Revelation Online, Closed Beta First Impressions

Revelation Online takes players to the lands of Nuanor, a relatively wide open world where dark forces and adventures abound. The whole is in a very typical medieval Chinese fantasy setting, with many touches that plunge players entirely into phantasmagoria, notably with the many different NPC races that populate the game universe. The Falmaris, beings that resemble both humans and amphibians, the Hyphaeans, basically speaking mushrooms, or even the Ursids, large ursine protectors of the forests. And they are everywhere. I don’t think it would be too farfetched to say that the number of NPCs in the game surpasses the number of enemies. 
 

Note, that the game is quite far from a realistic style, many zones dripping with kawaititude, sets of colors, reflections and somewhat large assets for female characters. Lovers of screenshots, you will find your happiness for sure.

The Basics
And as in most other MMORPGs, everything starts with the character creation. Here 6 "races" (or morphologies) are available. Players then find a fairly simple, but effective, interface to create the character of their dreams. A number of various settings are available, to alter size, thickness, color etc. One downside however, at least for one portion of the MMORPG community, is that the default settings are oriented to "anime" type characters. It is then necessary to take the tool in hand, playing around with it for a bit to finally get out of this stereotype and create the character that suits you. 

I personally opted to have my character look like Gintoki from the Gintama anime.
 
The customization, also continues through the costumes and here we are well served. There is a multitude (and that’s an understatement) available, between clothes, haircuts, hats, or back ornaments, to cite a few. All this available via the cash-shop, of course, but also directly in the game, via for auction houses or progression rewards. We can also complement our style with a nice pair of wings, or a mount that kicks ass. Revelation is "the" fashion game without a doubt.

As for the classes, the first thing I personally appreciate is the great return of the holy trinity (Tank, DPS, Healer) and it does good, because it is a point that I particularly like. You will find a fairly traditional roster: The Vanguard, main tank armed with his sword and shield. The Blademaster, sort of an off tank that can dual wield swords or use two-handed weapons to deal areas of damage. As for mage DPS classes, we have the Occultist, a hybrid  damage/heals class that manages two types of magic, and the Swordmage, a ranged magician who mastered the elements. The Gunslinger is the ranged physical DPS class, excelling in single target damage with its pistols and rifle, while also being able to manage groups of enemies with summons and traps. Finally the main healer of the game is the Spiritshaper, primarily here to care for its allies, in addition to being able to summon various creatures that will help in battle.

Textures are not very advanced, especially if you stick your nose to the backgrounds. On the bright side, we can say that this makes Revelation a light game, accessible to a lot more PC builds than other “recent” MMORPGs. But still, you can’t fault it. Beyond the textures, the world is well worked and teeming with details. The landscapes are very consistent and above all varied. It is for this reason that after a few minutes of play, one marvels nevertheless. Like an ocean of ice under a starry sky, that reflects the world as a mirror; It sells the dream. 

As for the soundtrack, I fully subscribe to the work of  Neal Acree, who has worked on World of Warcraft, Overwatch, Starcraft II and Diablo III, among others.

The Gameplay
The main quests, meant to introduce the various features of the game, lead players to discover the different races that populate Nuanor and to take part in various internal conflicts. Classic, but still coherent, the plot has players traverse lands that are all different from one another, from the underwater world to the snow-capped mountains. These transitions can however be relatively brutal. You will have to prepare for everything in your travel suitcase.
 
Forget the repetitive bashing of monsters for hours to gain in levels. In Revelation, the experience gain system is quite peculiar. Indeed it is based mainly on the main quests, the dungeons and on the wide range of daily missions that one can absolutely not escape. Coupled with the hot springs, which allows players to gain experience by being AFK, leveling up to level 49 is fast and fluid. It remains to be seen what it really takes to reach the max level, currently capped at level 69.

From the first moments in the game, players learn, via a small quest, that they can fly without limits in Revelation Online. Unfortunately, this pleasure is abruptly withdrawn from us as we are forced to wait for the level 29 to obtain our first permanent pair of wings. Freedom ! Flying is fun, fluid, with various commands, and above all without time limitations other MMORPGs have, which is extremely pleasant. The wings are therefore an integral part of the landscape, one crosses absolutely everywhere, as this means of movement is quite practical. The game also has its own combat skills dedicated to flight, adding a new dimension to its combat system.
Revelation Online allows players to simply choose between three control styles: tab targetting, free aim, and click to move modes. Even if certain classes are more predisposed than others for such and such a mode of control (healing without targeting can be quite challenging), it is a big positive point, in my opinion. Coupled with the fact, that many parameters and shortcuts are adjustable, players can have their own personal playstyle. Fighting is dynamic, but not too much. There is a good balance between reflexes (with dodges) and a good positionment, which leaves us time to enjoy our spells panel.

The combat has especially marked me in the dungeons, which, with their various levels of difficulty, offer good group challenges. A proper strategy as well as a good cohesion between the group will be required in most cases, especially since you don't want your allies to end up in the skill indicators of bosses because of you. Your party may not be too understanding about you running all over the place with the aggro and getting your healer killed. 

Conclusion
While still in Closed Beta, Revelation Online announces itself as a title that will pleasant hours of play. Without introducing anything innovative, it brings together a good number of systems which have proved themselves on other MMORPGs, all this, in a fluid and pleasant way.
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