Do you hate paying a monthly fee to play a game as much as I do? The simple fact that I shelled out fifty bucks for a free month of service – when it usually only costs around ten – drives me insane. I won’t question the quality of these games (I’m still addicted to Final Fantasy XI, no matter how much I moan about it), but I will question the price gouging that these companies engage in. That’s where free MMORPGs step in. For the most part, these game are just as deep in their gameplay as their commercial counterparts. While the graphics and sound (for the most part) will not blow you away, the feature-rich gameplay and sheer mass of content will keep you coming back for more. Todays free MMORPG: Daimonin.

Daimonin is a free 2D MMORPG. The graphics are an overhead isometric view (diamond shaped tiles), and aren’t spectacular by any means. The biggest drawback of the graphics is that there is no smooth movement between tiles – you just “jump” from one tile to the next. Also, the sound, while superb to other free games, does get repetitive, and I found myself turning off the sound and listening to some other music. Aesthetic problems aside, however, Daimonin is a feature-rich game that is expanding every day.

After you create a character you’re taken through an out-of-character tutorial level that is specifically designed to teach the player (you) how to play the game. I have always loved the idea of an out-of-character tutorial system, because it helps the player understand things much more quickly than an in-game tutorial ever could, and Daimonin’s system pulls it off very well.

Once you’re in the game, you’ll notice a few quirks to the actual system: your characters position is not immediately altered when you try to move, which give the impression of a very high lag system; however, this “lag” does not alter the gameplay from what I can tell, so while ti’s a minor annoyance, it’s something you’ll get used to over time.

As I said, with all of the flaws of Daimonin, it’s the gameplay that’s going to bring you back time and again. In the game you can choose between several different weapon, spell, and prayer skills – all designed to customize your character to your hearts content. The only drawback in this system, from that I could tell, is that once you select a particular skill (such as choosing to use “slash” weapons), you’re stuck with it (but, I’m told you can learn additional skills later in the game).

The game does have a magic system – you can cast spells, assuming you have enough magic points, but the interesting thing here is the potentially engrossing prayer system: you start off as a follower of “the tabernacle” which gives you access to certain prayers, but you can change your following and gain access to other prayers – but be careful because your grace points (which are just magic points you can regain by praying) can be altered when you switch to other followings.

Aside from the potentially engrossing prayer system, your character has all of the basics you’ve come to expect in an RPG – numerical stats (such as strength, dexterity, and wisdom), hit points, magic points, and grace points. Your character can also become poisoned or diseased, and will take damage over time if the situation isn’t rectified.

The one thing Daimonin has over a lot of the commercial MMORPGs is the fact that it’s a small – but very helpful – community. Players are more than willing to point you in the right direction, tell you what to avoid, and generally help you enjoy the game. Also, since it’s such a small community, some of the people you can interact with are – gasp – developers. It’s always nice to be able to ask a technical question and actually get a proper answer 🙂

Overall, Daimonin will not blow gamers out of the water. Commercial MMORPGs have the advantage in graphics and length, but the depth of Daimonin’s gameplay will make hardcore gamers squeel with delight.

Squee!

Provided by Geekstreak