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NPICSOFT | Official Site
MMORPG | Setting:Fantasy | Status:Final  (rel 11/17/15)  | Pub:Gamengame
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Initial Impressions of Webzen's Hack'n'Slash RPG

ELOA: Elite Lord of Alliance Previews - By Robert Lashley on December 10, 2015

Initial Impressions of Webzen's Hack'n'Slash RPG

At the end of last month Webzen published NPICsoft’s Elite Lord of Alliance. This game is billed by the developers as a, get ready for it, Triple-Action Hack’n’Slash Anime Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game, or a TAHNSAMMORPG. The acronym soup is getting thick around here. With that said let’s take off the gloves and get down to business.

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At a previous point in the history of the world benevolent titans appeared and prevented your race from being annihilated by a warlike species. These titans were known as Elite Lords. Now the elite lords are gone and you are left to fend for yourself but in the subsequent years you have learned to take up arms and defend yourself.

There are cutscenes interspersed throughout the start of the game that convey the overall game story to you. These are done in an art style that looks like charcoal drawings on brown wrapping paper. While I actually enjoyed these visuals the voice acting is probably the worst I have ever heard in a game. It sounds like Siri is reading the lines and not a person. They are delivered with no emotion and there are perceptible pauses between each word. This makes the lines sound like a computer is reading text back to you and not a person delivering a line.

The voice work isn’t the only thing that is off putting about the audio in ELOA. The music is atrocious too. I understand that is attempting to be up-tempo and get the blood flowing but it is, too high pitched, shrill, and grating. It quickly forced me to turn the in game sound off.

Since the game is microtransaction based I immediately checked out the shop. The shop was filled with cosmetic items and pets which one would expect. Nothing that screamed pay to win. The most expensive items appeared to be in the 1800 point range which is the equivalent of $18. Pet eggs could be purchased for as little as 130 points. While the price seems reasonable for the pets the problem lies in the fact they are boxes that have a random pet. You can’t just buy that pet you really want.

Speaking of pets, this is one of the systems that initially appears to be the most interesting in the game. Most pets can also double as mounts for your character. As you play through the game your pets will level with you and provide combat buffs to your avatar. Once your pet reaches a certain level you can combine them with other pets to create a new more powerful pet with unique skills and abilities. There are some very interesting pets in the game including a giant cat that carries you around in its arms. My first pet was a mushroom that quintupled in size so I could ride around.

While the pets on average look well done the rest of the game's graphics are woefully outdated. For a game that is supposed to feature anime style graphics there entirely too many angles on what should be round edges.

It took a minute but I was able to figure out what the triple action referred to without having to dig out my MMO jargon decoder ring. There are 5 races in the game with 4 classes each. Each class has three different stances each with their own weapon. Ergo the triple action. Action does seem to be one thing the game seems to get... okay. There is a combo bar that displays on the UI once you begin to attack the local fauna. This combo meter adds a touch of a fast twitch arcade feel to the game. As you fill the meter and complete longer combo chains it rewards you with buffs. It also tracks the amount of damage you do not just the number of consecutive hits. One thing I did notice is that I never seemed to miss.

Another system that I enjoy is the monster journal. As you progress through zones and discover and kill, new monsters are added to your journal. As you complete the journal for different zones you are rewarded with items. I’m not sure how important those items are just yet but there is a carrot at the end of this monster journal stick.

It’s early in my playthrough and I’m not that enamored with the game but I’ll keep powering through it over the coming days and produce and official review sometime next week. No matter what else happens at least I can look forward to the fact that Santa Claus is coming to town even in ELOA. Apparently the game has a seasonal event system in place as well.

Robert Lashley / Rob is a Staff Writer and jack of all trades for MMORPG.com. When he isn’t blinding people with the glare from his head in front of a camera you can chase him down on Twitter, PSN, XBL, and Nintendo @rant_on_rob.