Exclusive Preview: First Impressions of Arcane Chronicles’ CB

Arcane Chronicles - Review - EN


Graphics: 4
Gameplay: 3
Sound: 3

Overall: 3.5

Pro: Apparently lots of repeat entertainment provided by the random dungeon generator able to create some pretty tricky challenges.

Con: Quite uninspired, generic combat the "challenge" of which is generally made up of lots of mobs attacking at once.


Nexon kindly allowed us a sneak peek at Arcane Chronicles, their upcoming fantasy RPG for browsers that is in closed beta test at the moment. So we could take a first look at the title and had the opportunity to have a level 30 character to explore the Diablo-styled point & click role-playing MMO game in which you are able to select your class and set out to fight sinister creatures and beasts of all kinds the world is brimming with. Loaded with features you gradually get access to when levelling up, the MMO seems to have a lot to offer, though falling a bit short here and there.

We started our adventure with character creation that allowed choosing from three classes available as of now: Shaman, Warrior and Mage. We also got to see another yet unknown class that was greyed out, but from its artwork we bet it’s going to be a rogue. Creating a character consists of nothing more than picking a character name, gender and class. That’s really all about it, not the slightest option to customise your character in whatever way, meaning that each and every player is forced to stick with exactly the same artwork for their chosen class. Quite unsatisfactory for a MMORPG these days, don’t you think? And definitely not the best impression to start with.

Arcane Chronicles screenshot 1

The creation done, we were immediately taken to some dungeon area to speak to an NCP which explained our current task to us: We were to track down and kill the Lich King. Before dedicating ourselves to this mission, we had another urgent task to fulfil which was to turn down the volume as the default 50% volume was unbearably loud, even adjusted to 10%, which was the lowest you can do if not willing to turn it off completely.

Back to our journey, we found ourselves in the centre of the action of the introductory tutorial, a feature that is becoming more and more common nowadays, so we were eager to discover what it had to offer. Sadly, we have to say that it was only made up of five undead servant type monsters we were tasked to kill which was done with merely two hits, before encountering the Lich King himself. This one was huge, roughly three times as tall as our own hero, and therefore looked quite promising… However, he as well was killed in about two hits, resulting in one of our most disappointing experiences ever.

Arcane Chronicles screenshot 4 Arcane Chronicles screenshot 5

The scene afterwards immediately cut to another NPC, Markus, whom we found hurt in a wood near the Lich King’s place. Markus required us to get a healing herb from a hobgoblin, creatures that gladly emerged in hordes only a few seconds away, died in one hit, dropping the required item on the first kill, which all seemed sort of pointless to us. Then we were given a letter to deliver to a certain dame resident in a nearby town. This was kind of a compass directing us into the town to fulfil some jobs, which meant speaking to NPCs and moving around to get to know how to use some of the functions. Even for a tutorial, it rather seemed long-winded and pretty basic, having to talk to three different NPCs you automatically come across as quests have an auto tracking function to instantaneously bring you to the appropriate area when all we really wanted was killing something.

We fortunately got the chance to do so when accepting our first quest. This finally was more like it! Being the slayer of the Lich King, it felt good to see our abilities being recognised and put to good use when a treacherous threat haunting the town had to be dealt with… some raccoons and foxes that have been stealing cereal. Not exactly what this Lich King slayer had been waiting for but on we went. Combat was quite undemanding, just target your enemy and hit your attack buttons. We had the feeling that everything simply came into melee range, forcing us to try to keep our distance. As the opponents weren’t particularly treacherous, this wasn’t that important though. Realising there wouldn’t be much of a challenge, we decided to switch to our premade level 30 character.

Arcane Chronicles screenshot 8 Arcane Chronicles screenshot 10

At level 30, players have access to a number of features unavailable at start, the first of which we thought it would be great to explore: the random dungeon generator. Just one click of a button triggers six wheels to spin to randomly select a dungeon area, monster difficulty, monster number, monster type, XP and gold reward. Although these dungeons are generally designed for a party, we thought we’d give it a try anyway. Our one free spin gave us the highest five-star difficulty and a five-star number of monsters…  we were automatically brought into the area where about 30 high-level monsters were instantly just in front of us and promptly killed us in five seconds flat. Literally.

The game does to boost a lot of different features, from PVP, questing, world bosses hunting to the random dungeons (which although we weren’t able to try out in any detail we do think is a pretty nice idea).

Arcane Chronicles looks okay, though a little dated considering the tough competition among its competitors already out there. The combat sadly is mediocre at best, for all areas just seem to be inundated with dozens of monsters of the same kind, most of which do melee damage just piling on top of you. There’s no real tactics or strategy required resulting in the feeling the whole experience being grindy.

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