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Risk Your Life
Risk Your Life is a surprisingly popular MMORPG featuring a fairly attractive 3D world and characters. It’s a common set-up in the MMO gaming world, as players create their own character, explore a fantasy world, battle one another and team up for quests or engage in wars for territory.
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Levelling Up Grind
As with the majority of MMORPG games you have to begin by levelling up before you can explore some of the more interesting facets of the game without being constantly killed. Levelling up is the predictable grind of hunting down monsters with poor AI and slaying them, then repeating the process over and over again until your hit points and mana reach a reasonable level.
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The basic human character classes are your typical fighter, rogue, mage or acolyte and you can upgrade your character as you develop. You can also choose to play as Ak’Kan a beast like warrior race but if you do there are initially only two classes to choose from, Combatants and Officiators. There are also a huge range of monsters to battle from zombies to giant beetles, ogres to orcs, and loads more besides.
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The community which numbers in the millions are mostly not English speakers and it can be difficult to get any sort of help with understanding the game although the basic concepts will be familiar to any MMORPG fans. The website is far from brilliant and sadly the forum was inaccessible.
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There is a bit of a learning curve with several keyboard shortcuts to learn but the basic controls are standard FPS and easy to master, there is also a mouse only control option. The focus seems to be on PvP (person versus person) combat which you can choose to take part in by requesting a duel. Of course if you don’t level up first this will not be a fun experience. The hack and slash combat system is fairly good if you like that kind of thing but outside of PvP combat the game is lacking. Skills are picked up by acquiring books and there is no real trade development available. You can join parties to engage in quests but the majority are basic with little in the way of story elements.
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The world itself looks quite good and you can get some stunning views across the terrain, there are also some nice special effects. Some of the weapon and armor designs are nice too but the character and monster models are fairly basic and many of the characters look too similar. The interface and menus are quite ugly and not very intuitive and there are lots of more attractive and imaginative options out there.
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On release back in 2005 the big draw was a tournament with a grand prize of $1 million but the company responsible, Planetwide Games, cancelled it without paying out after claims about cheating. The game can now be downloaded and played for free but it is a big download.
It’s commonly the case with MMORPG’s that you get more out the more you put in and Risk Your Life is no different in that respect but with so many good games in the genre there is little to recommend this title as your first port of call and nothing much in the early part of the game to encourage you to keep playing.