Blade and Soul Preview

Blade and Soul Preview

Platform: PC
Developer: NCSoft
Publisher: NCSoft
Engine: Unreal Engine 3
Gameplay Modes: Multiplayer
If you haven’t heard about Blade and Soul, don’t worry. I hadn’t heard about it either until just a few weeks ago. Then i slapped myself. Blade and Soul is a korean MMORPG in development by NCSoft. What else is new? Well, the game is a martial arts MMORPG. Nothing new, you say. Well this is where i will prove you wrong. Believe me, you’ve never seen a Korean, martial arts MMORPG like it. The game is set in a fantasy world, strongly influenced by Korean mythology.

The first thing to be noted about Blade and Soul is the style of the game. Lead designer of the project is Hyung Tae Kim, known for his work on Magna Carta. NCSoft weren’t just sitting back waiting for the money to roll in. They obviously wanted to make a martial arts game with great atmosphere. But the game doesn’t rely solely on style. The visual and technical features of Blade and Soul are absolutely breath taking. NCSoft have always been popular for using super polished engines for their games, and this one doesn’t make a difference. Blade and Soul uses the third edition of the Unreal engine(as seen in Unreal Tournament 2007).

Ok, we get it – the game looks great. What else? Blade and Soul will introduce 4 races and 8 character classes. So far we’ve seen only two races in action – the sword wielding Jin and the knuckle bashing Gon. The both races looked unique and couldn’t be further apart in terms of gameplay style and visuals.

Speaking of gameplay mechanics, not much is know, but from what i’ve seen in gameplay trailers the game will focus on epically beautiful battles that will keep your jaw dropping. It looks like the gameplay style of each character will be different and unique. We’ve also seen massive enemies both in size and design, JRPG style. The typical Korean fanservice factor is more than obvious, female characters wearing minimalistic clothes that cover only the basic parts.

The soundtrack we’ve heard from the trailers sounded just right and didn’t get too obvious, hurting your ears. The design of everything in the game looks outstanding and the art of the game is at a very high level. But what else to expect from the designer of Magna Carta? The trailers also show some sort of character transformations but we can only guess at this point.

There are several Korean MMO’s that i’m looking forward to – Tera, Continent Of Ninth, Mabinogi: Heroes.. and Blade and Soul, of course. From what i’ve seen the game will either be an outstanding MMORPG or another technically stunning Korean grindfest..

In typical, Korean matter, Blade and Soul will be released in Korea long before it gets ported. I’ve also heard rumors about it getting released for the PS3 as well. I guess we’ll wait and see.


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