As more and more games are launched the MMORPG and especially free-to-play games market is becoming more and more crowded. It takes a lot to stand out nowadays and even more to be able keep up with player’s demands. Gamigo is one of the most active companies in the field with a dozen of already launched free MMO games with different themes, and a few more in development. War of Angels is yet another product of this company. Considering that it took more of a classic approach to free fantasy MMORPGs, it’s supposed to be just another game out of hundreds. But appearances may deceive…
From the very beginning you realize that this is a classic free-to play fantasy MMO. You have to choose from the basic 4 classes: fighter, rogue, mage and ranger. Later we have more development options, raising the total number to 8. The characters look fine, despite the VERY limited number of available customization options. After a basic tutorial you start doing the usual kill X, bring Y quests, and meanwhile you learn a bit more about the more advanced functions of the game like crafting, gathering, enchanting, pets, mounts and… flying.
Yes, flying is something that makes War of Angels stand out. Although it has been applied in a few other games too, it actually has a purpose. There are quests where you have to kill creatures that can only be found in the air. Also, there are areas that cannot be reached in any other way. Of course, you could just use flight for convenience. But it’s not something you can have fun with for as long as you want. For one, the jet-pack/wings have a limited working time after which you just fall to the ground… and that hurts. So, if you don’t want to die you’d better plan your air activities in advance. Furthermore, once landed, you can’t fly right away but have to wait some time; so again, you shouldn’t just land in the middle of high level angry mobs. Every flying device, be it mechanical or “natural” has its own characteristics that make flight even more interesting.
If we can fight on the ground and in the air, why not underwater? That’s what the developers must have thought when they introduced swimming. Much like the flight time, you have underwater swimming time that depletes much faster, but slows down as you grow in level. Unfortunately, not much attention was given to this part of the game, so it feels somewhat unnatural.
Graphics-wise, the game looks fine, although it’s a bit behind what 2011 graphics mean. On the other hand, there’s no lag, the load times are short and what’s more, everything looks great when flying. Actually, there’s no line of sight (with detail on high at least) so when in midair, you can actually use certain buildings or landscape marks to orient, even if they are way far. Neat! There are also weather changes and day-night cycle that has a real purpose. There are certain mobs that appear only at night-time and are usually stronger than the ones that show up during the day. So, it really isn’t safe to walk alone at night! Again, not the same thing can be said about water. Its motion is plain fake, and no matter what you do, it doesn’t react to your moves. Fortunately, the map is huge and you won’t find it so often.
Although it doesn’t try to reinvent the wheel, War of Angels makes good use of the classic game design. And with the aid of new features like flying and swimming manages to be a fairly good game. It’s that kind of product that even if it doesn’t excel at anything, overall it is high quality. Definitely worth trying.
by Sicaru Adrian