Fallout 3
Platform: PC
Publisher: Ping0
Developer: Flagship Studios
Genre: Action RPG
Format: Download
Release: US TBA

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Night raid!
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John Tucker
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John Tucker

In the galaxy of PC RPGs, there have been some very bright stars. One of those stars was Diablo II, an outstanding game that earned a lot of fans through its addictive hack & slash "gotta get one more item" gameplay. It also earned a lot of imitators through its years of successful sales and online play. One of those imitators was a game called Fate, which took Diablo's formula and tweaked it in several ways - the most immediately noticeable being its graphics, which leaned decidedly more towards "cute" than Diablo II. A few years after Diablo II and Fate were released, some of the developers who made them teamed up in a new company, Flagship, to create Hellgate: London. Hellgate's strong emphasis on online play meant a solid networking architecture was essential, so Flagship wrote their online engine and then wrote Mythos as a way to test it. Mythos is now a full-fledged game, and it's currently in beta testing. Thanks to one of our forum members here at RPGFan, I got to join the beta, and here's how Mythos looks at the moment.

Mythos features three races: humans, gremlins, and satyrs. As is fairly standard, the three races have different strengths that affect their usefulness in the different classes, but the difference doesn't appear to be so great as to hinder players. There are also three classes: the melee-heavy Bloodletter, the magic-using Pyromancer, and the gun-wielding Gadgeteer. The three classes play very differently, and each have three skill trees that allow for further customization. Interestingly to a former Diablo II Necromancer like me, all three classes have their own type of summoned creature that players can use to keep the heat off.

As one might hope, online play is fairly solid, and the only lag issues I've seen have come from my own connection, not from server problems. In a switch from many online games, players only see other players who aren't in their party in town, so unless you've partied up, playing Mythos is frequently just like playing an offline game. There is currently no PvP element to Mythos, but the developers have been clear that it is coming in the future. In a move that will hopefully help avoid some arguments on who gets what, any equipment enemies drop is for the player who sees them. That is, if you're in a party and you see something on the ground, pick it up, because it's yours. No one else can even see it.

Perhaps the best description I can give of Mythos is this: it's like a cross between the gameplay of Diablo II with the graphics of Fate, with some of the nice elements of MMOs added in. For example, spells can be attached to a character's "belt" for easy casting whenever they're needed, which is very useful for things like buffs and summons, which are more useful when they can be cast as they run out without having to switch active skills. Gamers everywhere can look forward to playing Mythos for themselves when it's released later this year. The current plan is that it will be free to download and play, but that premium content will be available for those who pay to play. Flagship is even working on ways to build in item-selling functionality so that players won't have to/want to do so using eBay. My playtime with Mythos has been very enjoyable, and the free model should work well to attract players. After all, they'll have nothing to lose and everything to gain.


© 2008 Ping0, Flagship Studios. All Rights Reserved.

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