Almost any good RPG has equipment, and R.O.H.A.N. makes no exception to this. There is plenty of equipment, common and rare, to be found while hunting. What makes the equipment system stand out are two NPC services: forging and refining.
Forging is a bit like crafting, but less tedious. Forges offer the chance to combine several standard pieces of equipment via a predetermined recipe (say, for instance, Leather + Hard Leather Armor) to make a higher quality piece of equipment. This is enriched by the quality and attributes of what you combine; take two bonus-less pieces, and you'll get a bonus-less piece of armor, but take two magical items and combine them, and find a much better result.
These reforged items, however, often come at a high level or stat requirement, but not to worry. Refiners are available to handle both problems, and with surprising efficiency. You can, with enough patience, reduce the level or requirements of an item down to your level for solely the cost of gold (though special stabilizers help ensure against a failure.) This means that even at an early level, you can end up with rather powerful weapons and gear, a nice touch of reward for the hours put in grinding.
Graphics & Sound
R.O.H.A.N. is a lovely game. No, it can't match up to graphic power-houses like Aion, but for a free to play game, R.O.H.A.N. seems to combine the functional needs of fast load times for PvP with a beautiful landscape. The world around you is varied, and more than just re-plastered textures stitched together. There's little doubt that some players have come to the game with graphics as a compelling reason.
It's not just the landscape, either: combat is aesthetically pleasing to watch. Take, for instance, a melee character. In a standard MMORPG, that same melee character will stand stationary as they fight, swinging their weapon through the enemy's body with no seeming impact other than a loss of hit points (and perhaps some blood.) Not so in R.O.H.A.N.; here, the character will physically charge forward with their attacks, knocking back their opponent so fiercely that even the camera will pause as the action takes place.
The audio of the game is not so enthralling, unfortunately. Combat sounds, while accurate enough, become tedious while grinding. There is no background music or ambiance to accompany a character on their hunt or adventures; not a single wolf howl or bird song, not a single stirring tune or even a generic looped song. Now, some (most?) players turn these options off, but to not even have the option to gain immersion in your game world - especially when the lore already fails to serve in that regard - leaves another hollow ringing shell.
The Item Mall
Those of you who caught on to the grinding aspect of R.O.H.A.N. earlier can already take a guess at what dependence on the item mall is like. With so much experience being reliant upon solo or group grinding, the best, and the only way to speed things up is with an item like an experience scroll. Players will look at anywhere from $1 for 3 hours of party boosted experience to almost $5 for a three-day scroll. Thirty day equipment runs $2 to $6 a piece. Complete skill resets cost $12, stat resets cost $8, and so on the equipment goes.
While it may initially seem that you can keep under $10 or $15 a month while leveling by just buying scrolls and perhaps an item or two, to really compete in PvP, you'll need much more than that. The top players in PvP use some of the enhancement items available in the shop, which boost stats like hit points, stealth detection, speed, damage, and defense. They are relatively inexpensive in individual quantities, but add up fast for regular play. Many players spend upwards of $50 a month on R.O.H.A.N. to compete at the top level of PvP and Township battles. Even competing in World of Warcraft's e-sport arena only costs $15 a month.
When I started up R.O.H.A.N. for the first time, I had heard a great deal of praise for the game, from its graphics to an outstanding PvP system. Though I had suspended these thoughts as I played, I was left wondering more what substance there really was to the game. While R.O.H.A.N. clearly aspires to be a quality open PvP game, it lacks both polish and substance. With the Item Mall supplying a clear advantage to players who can afford the upgrades and enhancements, it's clear that R.O.H.A.N. has missed its mark.