I didn’t give the free MMORPG Last Chaos much of a thought when an online friend first posted about it last year, because honestly, the screenshots weren’t particularly impressive and I was already busy with Guild Wars. When she posted again a few days ago about castle sieges (something I really enjoyed in Lineage II that Guild Wars didn’t give me) and marrying another character of the same sex in the game, however, I downloaded it right away!

[Brighter and glowy screenshots are ones with filtering turned on (max); darker and more jagged ones without.]

Game installed fine, ran fine, music and sound effects all zero by default but I immediately had the option to change everything on the character selection screen. So far so good! Until… character creation.

From left to right: Titan, Knight, Healer, Mage, Rogue, Sorcerer

From left to right: Titan, Knight, Healer, Mage, Rogue, Sorcerer

What you see in the screenshot is almost all of what you get — your class is dependent on your sex. Muscly / melee = men; magical / agile = women; oh no too many females, let’s make the Sorcerer male. *rolls eyes* But Vickie, potential castle sieges! You must play on!

Mysterious fourth customisable characteristic?

Mysterious fourth customisable characteristic?

There seems to be a reserved fourth customisable characteristic, though. Different sex for different class eventually, possibly?

And so I put class aside and picked whoever looked the most appealing to me. Much like Lineage II, customisation of appearance is very limited.

I created a Mage (who reminds me of Dark Elves from Lineage II)

I created a Mage (who reminds me of Dark Elves from Lineage II)

Heh, I’m a little predictable.

After a short personal dungeon (instanced), I made it to the main town Randol and was soon killing foxes and wolves. I think the monster animation needs a bit of rework since the distance they travel doesn’t match their strides (Is there a technical term for this?). But I keep reminding myself that this is a free game.

And there are castle sieges.

The maps (W or alt+W) are quite helpful and you can ask pretty much any NPC for direction to another NPC. NPCs with quests (Q) and quest rewards (A) are clearly marked, both on the maps and on the NPCs themselves. Teleporting to most main towns are free as well.

The game has something else I’ve really loved from Lineage II that’s also missing in Guild Wars — running all over the place and climbing hills. My character may need glasses / binoculars, though (visual distance was set to the highest).

Overlooking Randol... half of it

Overlooking Randol... half of it

I met up with the online friend in the game soon. She informed me that the highest level was 145 (at the time of writing). That’s right, one hundred and frigging forty five levels. She also told me about the Guardian system (Status [T or alt+T] > Action, Social > Action > Guardian system), in which the apprentice gains a shiny weapon while the guardian gains reputation points on the condition that the former reaches level 20 in 10 days.

Revisiting the same place, now with filtering effect and new armour and weapon

Revisiting the same place, now with filtering effect and new armour and weapon

We decided that it’s win for both of us if she power-levelled me, so I chose her as my guardian and soon dinged 20, got a shiny weapon, leeched enough money from the level 100+ mobs she fought to get some level-appropriate but equally revealing armour… and we’re off on our own merry ways.

Monsters (and players?) leave blood on the floor when they die in a personal dungeon, by the way. I can’t tell whether it’s awesome or unnecessary.

Blood on floor

Blood on floor

Later, I met a princess in a personal dungeon, who, of course, needs to be saved because princesses’ sole existence is to be saved.

(My eyes might fall out if I keep rolling them like this.)

I'll save you. I'll save you NAO.

I'll save you. I'll save you NAO.

But…

Nao Princess is not looking at my face

Nao Princess is not looking at my face

What the quest didn’t tell you is that not only does Nao Princess not have any fighting power, she also doesn’t have any HP regeneration, ability to self-heal, dodge enemies or respond to YOU’RE STANDING IN MY FUCKING WAY either.

Without any planning and still noobish at the game thanks to being power-levelled, the rescue mission resulted in much fail.

You have failed quest [Rescue the Princess]

You have failed quest [Rescue the Princess]

Anyway.

Similar to Lineage II (again), you learn skills by spending the SP you gained from killing stuff. And still similar to Lineage II, there’s never enough SP to use if you fight the natural way. In this game, though, you lose both XP and SP when you die. Therefore, in order to get enough SP, we might just have to do this:

  1. Kill stuff with high SP-to-XP ratio to gain XP and SP.
  2. Use SP to learn skills, preferably down to 0.
  3. Suicide; lose normal amount of XP but 0 SP because you have none.
  4. Repeat from step 1.

Tada! SP farming.

Coloured dragons

Coloured dragons

More things to note:

  1. The screen holds for 2 seconds when you take a screenshot. Not cool.
  2. There are mounts: horses (quite realistic if they’re not funky-coloured) and dragons.
  3. Magic skills take a while to start casting and sometimes I can’t tell whether I hit or missed.
  4. There also seems to be some sort of safe zones (near entrances of towns and outside dungeon rooms?) where your attacks fail and monsters stop chasing / won’t attack you. The zone isn’t clearly marked so it can be quite annoying for ranged players, especially spell casters.
  5. Aside from the personal dungeons, everything else reminds me of Lineage II.
  6. This game really reminds me of Lineage II.

And this game seriously very much reminds me of Lineage II. The UI, the music, the skills, the social actions, monster level difference equals different monster name colour (exactly the same as Lineage II’s), the grind… But I haven’t played enough of these games to tell whether this system is Lineage II-inspired or just a typical (Korean) grind game thing.

I guess I’d recommend this game to hardcore gamers who wanted to try something like Lineage II but can’t find a good private server, don’t want to pay to play, or don’t quite have the hardware for it. This game is absolutely not for casual gamers.

Me? I don’t see myself getting addicted to it, but I might play on since I have a thing for grinding.

And that, my friend, is Last Chaos and the last mid-semester break of my degree.