Introduction & Notes
Good evening, e*PvP! This weekend Iíve had the absolute pleasure of testing
. This game is truly unique, itís an action based mmorpg, fast-paced and leaving control entirely in the hands of the player. Itís more or less instance based, meaning there are no fields and forests of monsters to be killed for hours and hours for the sake of leveling up. The quests fit in well with the regular gameplay, more just adding bonuses to your dungeon runs, than giving you awkward missions to trudge through for the sake of progression. As for PvP, despite not being faction based (a personal favourite of mine, it adds a nice element of rivalry to a game) there is an abundance of it available. With duels, arena matches allowing up to 8 players per team, and the ability to intrude on and assault others making a dungeon run, youíre never going to get bored in C9. Iíve decided to make this preview as much of a guide as I can, for players to look to in upcoming betas, especially with the
coming up, newbies will want to get into the action ASAP! That said, Iím still learning about the game so it is still incomplete, but I will update it as new information becomes available to me!
Continent of the Ninth Seal appears to have low system requirements, but I was regrettably crippled by lag if I maxed out my graphical settings, and my computer is by no means low spec! That said, most modern computers should be able to run the game smoothly on the lowest graphical settings, and they even have a few features to help the game run smoother. So for most of my screenshots to follow, the game will be in the graphical setting shown below, which is low in comparison, but the game still looks incredible! Note that doesn't include the character previews, which were taken with full graphics.
Classes, Quests and Combat
The game revolves around three base classes, the Fighter, Hunter and Shaman. There are two job promotions, at Lv 10 you become an elite version of your given class, Elite Hunter for example, and then at Lv 20 you can choose your profession for the rest of the game out of three options per class. All classes are gender locked, which is a bit unfortunate, but the character creation is unique for each class, and is plenty of fun in itself with lots of variety, allowing the player to make their own unique look.
The Fighter class is your basic warrior, utilising swords and shields in combat with mostly close combat skills. A Fighter later chooses between four subclasses, they are as follows:
- Your basic tank, high def, mediochre damage and rather sluggish.
- The middle-ground between Guardian and Blademaster, a typical fighting class.
- High-damage, speedy onslaughts are sure to come with Blademasters, but not recommended for tanking.
- Slow, sluggish and hella strong!
Hunters are C9ís ranged class, using daggers and bows for close or long range attacks. The unique thing about the ranged class in this game is you actually have to aim yourself! This is practically unheard of in MMORPGs, which typically utilise a targeting system for attacking enemies. Later in the game, a Hunter can become the following subclasses:
- Speedy combos with focus on hand-to-hand combat with daggers.
- Little use of actual weapons are employed with Scouts, but more explosives and traps.
- The basic ranged class, Rangers have an array of varied bow skills.
Continent of the Ninthís mages are known as Shamans, who use staffs to beat their enemies to a pulp, or cast a myriad of magical spells of great variety. This is the only female class, and later splits into three subclasses:
- This class allows you to summon a variety of elemental spirits for support, and doesn't really rely on much else.
- Summon spinning blades, whirlwinds and lay down all manners of shiny attacks with an Illusionist.
- The only Shaman that doesn't really utilise magic, Taoists use battle staffs to throw down hefty combos at high speeds.
Questing, PvP & General Gameplay
Questing in C9 fits into the general gameplay very nicely. There are three towns on three continents for players to visit, each for progressive level brackets. Each continent has its own set of dungeons and instances available for players, and an abundance of NPCs to give quests specific to each instance. Really, the quests just give the player more to get out of doing a dungeon, with additional items, EXP and money put up as rewards for stuff you were probably just going to do anyway. Class progression is also quest based, with little tasks given to accomplish to achieve promotion. A very nice feature of this game is you can do all of the above in a party or alone, so you could actually play through the entire game with a friend or by yourself, itís up to you.
As Iíve already mentioned, PvP is a huge part of C9. The fast-paced action gives way for a very intense PvP experience. Regrettably, in my testing I was only able to try out 1v1 duels, but even that was so much fun! Iíve posted a video below of one of the duels myself and a friend had, with me using a Blademaster, and he an Illusionist. The graphics settings for the game in this video are down as low as they can go for performance reasons, which is unfortunate because max graphics PvP looks amazing! C9 offers an array of different ways to PvP, with more to come in the future. Currently, you can fight 1v1 duels, as shown below, as well as up to 8 players in team arena matches, or you can invade others playing dungeon instances with the intrusion feature. PvP in this game definitely requires skill, the person with the best gear might not necessarily always win, and you need to know what youíre doing and what skills to use. NOTE: I'm fully aware the audio in that video is a little out of synch, it messed up somewhere along the line of processing. I'll have a much better gameplay video up over the next while, and you can all look forward to Noxian's video review soon too!
The combat system does get a little complicated, as there are several ways to fight. Skills in C9 are split into three categories: Skills, Combat and Passive. Skills vary for each class, and each profession, and are generally combat-based, such as spells or AoE attacks, or they can be buffs. Combat skills also vary, some simply improve the power of other skills, but mostly they act as combos, allowing Elementalists to hit F and forward to use a certain spell, for example. Passive skills are nothing new to MMORPGs, theyíre permanent improvements to your character applied with skill points. These skill points, needed for enhancing and learning new skills, are attained through levelling up. Resetting skills is doable via an item mall item purchase.
Crafting & Items
The crafting and item customisation system in this game is simply huge. As well as their class profession, players choose an Artisan profession for their crafting pleasure. You can choose between being a Metalworker, Tailor, Woodworker, Alchemist or Chef, each with its own unique abilities and skills. This is such a huge and detailed system, I barely had the chance to look into it properly. It would appear, however, that you can craft all sorts of items from raw materials, and later enhance them with enchantments and elemental add-ons. You can even change the appearance of your equipment to suit your style, now THAT is serious character customisation. Crafting and item enhancement materials can be bought from other players or found in dungeons in chests or via mob/boss drops. On top of item enhancement, you can even make permanent improvements to your own characters stats from craftable items, the limits of which I do not yet know.
Cons & Conclusion
As for the cons, you ask? Iíve been praising this game for over a thousand words; itís about time to get into the bad parts. There is a bit of a steep learning curve for combat functions and the crafting system, theyíre both incredibly detailed so it can take a while to really get the hang of things and learn what everything does. The performance/graphics issue is also definitely up there, but since the game is still in closed beta, itís entirely likely that this will be remedied in future releases. Another issue is it has the potential to get pretty boring if the gameplay gets repetative, which, for a game that revolves around instances as much as this one does, is entirely likely. These were my biggest problems, I honestly had a great first impression of this game. Potential future problems are typical F2P MMORPG ones, such as the Item Mall taking over, and making it Free to Play, Pay to Win, like many before it. I do hope this doesnít become the case, it really ruins games when the publisherís primary interest becomes cashing out on the players, rather than having a solid product that sells itself.
To conclude, Continent of the Ninth Seal is a bundle of innovation; unique in its field and filled with such enormous detail, it puts most other MMORPGs to shame. Be sure to check out the coming betas, if youíre a fan of action games, you wonít be disappointed!
Be sure to check out
to get your closed beta key! What do you all think of the game? Discuss below!