Review by Ethel

"It's free, so it's good?"


Maple Story is a MMORPG, and it's free to play. Unless you wanted a pet or special items, you do not need to pay in real life cash for anything.
While it is addictive and fun for the first few hours, days or weeks. Prolonged playing gradually sets in the boring mood.

Gameplay: 5

To fight and level up, is what we have seen so often in games, especially RPGs and naturally, Maple Story is not an exception. You play as a character you created yourself, and start off by levelling up till your character has reach the appropriate level, and ready for a class change. Basically, you get to choose between 4 main classes, specifically Warrior, Magician, Thief and Bowman
You go around the place killing monsters to gain experience points, which is a monotonous thing to do. Your experience points get deducted(one you reached Victoria Island) whenever you die and warp back to the nearest town, and you have to wait for your character to regenerate their HP and MP. This makes the player idle for that period of time. Sometimes it may provide a brief rest for the player as well, however many times, it changes the player's feelings and emotions very significantly.

Let me list an example, I finally have the mood to fight and level up, so I went and engage in battles, as I fight, my character's health and stats decreases, so I had to rest to recover my character's fortitude. And while I wait and wait, I may have started to lose that enthusiasm somewhat, and fighting again becomes a drag.

When you manage to reach the new island where you can upgrade into the new class, it's the same old fighting to level up. While there is more fun to fight in groups instead of alone, continous fighting with the same old attacks dull the initially excited heart.

The controls poses no problems, as you get to set your own buttons on the keyboard for various actions according to your personal preference.

Story: 2

There is no story, or rather, no main story in Maple Story. And...it makes you wonder why the word "Story" is included in the game's title. But putting aside that personal ponder, the game itself really...has no purpose or whatsoever. You start off as a character, and you are supposed to level up and go to Victoria Island. While it makes sense that this is the process you must go through, there is not a significant goal in doing so. And sometimes it makes people wonder why they try so hard to level up. A storyline does makes a difference.

Fun Factor: 8

Maple story includes many other game features such as mini-quests, weapons and armor and many other items to divert your attention away from the boring fighting for a while.

However, all these play too small a part it is not enough to make the player more interested in indulging in the game world of Maple Story for long.

If Maple Story had include other features such as allowing the player to engage in different types of jobs, it may provide more flexibility for the player, instead of just determining the player's ability by fighting, fighting, and more fighting.

Music/Sounds: 5

The music and sounds are matching, but none that is good or that you will remember, unless...you spend days at the same old place until the music just keep ringing in your head.

Graphics: 9

The characters are really cute, and you can make different funny and sweet expressions by pressing various buttons(F1-F7) and while the friend who introduced Maple Story to me said that lots of girls like to play Maple Story because it is cute, I feel that cute graphics and whatnot definitely are not enjpyed by girls or kids alone. Colorful graphics lightens the tedious mind of players at times.

Overall:7

I had originally felt that a score 6 is more fitting for Maple Story, but gave it a 7 finally due to the fact that it is a free MMORPG, you can not and must not expect it to include many factors and features as paid ones.

The main con of Maple Story is the lack of depth in the purpose of attempting to fight battles and level up, as just having a high level determines almost 95% of the things in Maple Story, including the items you can purchase and as well as the places you can go.

It also has a lack of variety in the battles, just hack and slash and a few special skills. After sometime, it gets boring to use the same old stuff.

On the other hand, it appeals to people as like any MMORPG, you can get to know people and form groups. Though the commnunity itself has another problem, as most of the people have their own motives, caring only for items and money.


Reviewer's Score: 7/10 | Originally Posted: 12/26/05


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