Nightfalls is a new browser-based MMORPG published by 37games that launched its first server on December 2, 2015. The closed beta was on November 23-30, 2015 but now it is open for everyone to play.
I was quite shocked to see that there is virtually no character customization options possible. It’s true that you can choose the gender of your character but that is it – there are no classes and you cannot change the appearance of your avatar. This is very disappointing, to put it mildly.
The graphics are okay. Characters and NPCs are nicely detailed and the environments are well-made. However, there is not much originality in the design since it looks like the standard medieval fantasy setting of most RPG games.
When you fight your character is transported to an instance which has somewhat worse graphics than the open world. Perhaps the lesser quality of the graphics in instanced combat was a deliberate choice to make the game run more smoothly during fights.
Animations are good. When skills are used the skills are properly animated and cool-looking.
Beginners are sent on a series of quests that reveal the story behind Nightfalls. It seems that your character has just arrived on a meteor and is therefore hailed as an “angel.” There is a prophecy that an angel will come and save the world, along with her companions, a brave barbarian, faithful monk, and powerful wizard.
Around 100 years or so ago, a tyrant was overthrown. Before he died he said he would return as the Skeleton King. You probably guessed immediately that this guy is back. So now your role is to fight the Skeleton King, find your companions, and defeat all of the evil minions of the ruler of Burning Hell.
As an angel your skills are apparently not so much killing these evil creatures but rather saving them. With this in mind, your skills as an angelic warrior have a holy theme – smite evil, holy fire, judgement of justice, and so forth.
Combat is not too complicated. Your character has a set of skills which he or she can use in combat. The basic skill builds up rage while the more powerful skills use rage. Each skill has a different effect and power. Basically, combat simply involves finding the best rotation of skills that can bring down your enemies as fast as possible.
Regarding the turn-based combat, you get a nice bonus if you win within a certain number of rounds. This is a great idea that adds a level of challenge to the game.
Note that there is an option to use “auto combat” but I found that I rarely used this since I could not get the bonus (for winning within a few rounds) if my character just auto-attacked without input from me. I guess this is an option if you are tired or don’t care about the loot.
Once you find your first companions, you need to add them to your combat formation. Whichever character you put in front will receive the most damage while the back row is protected. Later on when you have more companions the formation become more important but during the early stages of the game all you have to do is put your highest hp/defense character in front.
Dungeons and Bosses
As players level up their characters, new features are unlocked, including some single-player dungeons. The elite dungeon has both mobs and bosses which have to be defeated fast (within a certain number of rounds) to receive the best loot.
Once the dungeon is cleared, players are rewarded with equipment and treasure. The image above shows the reward screen. The amount of treasure you receive depends on how well you did. For example, if your efforts got a 3 star rating (for fast completion) then you can pick three out of the five cards. Two stars gets two cards, and so on.
The Test of Courage feature is similar but there are no mobs, just a single boss that you have to fight.
Nightfalls free stuff
As you play, you can click on the “online pack” icon on the upper right to get some cool free stuff. It’s not a lot but you do get packs every few minutes when you start playing. There is also a newbie pack that is free. You just have to claim it by clicking on the newbie pack link on the top of your screen.
I did not play the game for a very long time. I only did the beginner quests and a few dungeons. The gameplay so far was pretty meh. I mean, I did enjoy it a bit but it seems there isn’t that much that is unique to the game. The lack of character customization was very disappointing for me.
In my opinion, if you just want to while away a few hours with a free game than Nightfalls is good for that.
But what about making this your favorite MMORPG and playing it everyday? I think this is also doable. The game has decent graphics, replay value, and it’s brand new. The newness of the game means that if you like being the first person to play and dominate a game, then this could be the game for you. Plus, if you can join a good guild with other people that you like to play with, Nightfalls would be quite fun for you.
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