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Devilian safe bets often outnumber its innovations

Like a pair of shoes you might replace every few years, Devilian feels safe and familiar. An action-oriented free-to-play MMO with an isometric view, Trion Worlds' latest free-to-play title could be compared to Diablo or Torchlight, but it also bears the trappings of many F2P MMOs. From fetch quests to cash shops to PVP battlegrounds--not to mention cosmetic gear, mounts and pets--Devilian's safe bets often outnumber its innovations, yet that doesn't mean there's nothing there worth spending time on; it just depends on how you spend it.

At first, the game is a little overwhelming when it comes to enemy numbers. In most games there is a small cool down before an enemy respawns, but the initial leveling areas here have almost instant respawn timers. Therefore, it is a good idea to keep moving until you find a safe spot before opening your inventory or moving items around. Those timers did seem to slow as the level of the area increased giving more breathing room between fights.

On a technical front the only hiccup I encountered was specific to a certain area of the map, where silhouettes of texture less models were flying around screen. All things considered it’s a pretty bad bug and horrible jarring. Aside from this, everything was solid. Frame-rates remained consistent, but I wouldn’t expect Devilian to tax my GTX 980, despite its relatively good looks. Although the characters are pretty much gender-locked, you are given a nice range of customization to change your character’s look to your liking.


Of course, if you find out that you have made a mistake with the character class, you can simply create another character for free. However, if you want to create more characters, you’ll need to spend some real money to buy more character slots. So you have to keep moving and watch your health if you get overwhelmed but you’ll do a lot of damage, especially once your Devilian form is unlocked. Potions have a cool down point and until level twenty don’t give back much health.

Something else that takes some time getting used to is the fact that there’s no auto attack, which some players may prefer but it turns this into a button smashing game. If you use the keyboard to move it can get a little awkward. That being said the moves making some enemies explode is pretty satisfying. Some will only have a line and it’s more dialogue than anything else, which I think could have possibly been voice acted.

This is less annoying than NPCs repeating themselves for every quest you get from them. It won’t be much of a problem with minor characters who you might see only twice (when you get the quest and when you turn it in) but with the main quests that can get pretty annoying. Devilian doesn’t do a great job of speaking through its world, either, and I think that’s a bigger crime here; I skipped most of the dialogue in Diablo III and still got a good sense of what I was doing. I never got that from Devilian, and it made the grind to its endgame far less interesting than it would have been otherwise.

While I didn’t get into the social features that Trion’s been touting as the hook that will keep players coming back, I did poke around to get a feel for what players might be in for in regard to the business model and cash shop. It’s hard to tell whether what’s present will make it into beta and beyond, but as it stands there are a lot of Asian free-to-play techniques here, including time-limited mounts and pets, a small inventory that needs your money to make it all it could be, and costumes, costumes, costumes.

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