The world of Auteria is the setting for this MMORPG with its diverse range of landscapes, from Jungles to deserts, mountains to caves, villages to cities. Whilst you will probably agree that this is a rather common setting for a MMORPG even on Linux which has a more limited choice than other platforms, theres something that makes Auteria stand out from alternatives and this review will explore that further.
The Auteria storyline recounts how a boy fell through a magical portal into its world where you now find yourself (and the main quest is to answer the question of where this first unwilling pioneer ended up)
Auteria is available as a pre-compiled binary for you to merely unpack and execute immediately – its certainly not a large download either.
Character creation is the first port of call for any new adventurer with you getting to choose your sex, hair style etc. There is no modification of stats at the creation screen and everyone starts with the same skill levels, leaving it up to the player as to how they develop their character. This could be Mage or Fighter, Healer or Enchanter (or even a mixture of all – or something totally different)
Your adventure starts in a place called Hometown, which is a collection of wooden huts set on a beach. Up level 20 you will be able to return instantly to this location by typing “.beam” in the console, which you will also use to chat with other (human) characters.
The Auteria client is very simple to understand, its clear and intuitive interface allows you to get to grips with the game rather quickly. Help is at hand on any item merely by hovering your mouse cursor over it.
Auteria deals with character progress in a very similar way to Eternal Lands, with you having skill levels for things such as attack, magic, harvesting, cooking etc all which contribute XP to your overall rank. Currently I am rank 13 after a week or so of playing and looking at some of the players on the website, it appears that I have a long way to go with a few pro’s being at rank 300!
Even in the small area Ive explored, armor and weaponry seems vast and can be purchased from local shops/dealers or dropped randomly by creatures during your battles.
Auteria has all the ingredients of a great MMORPG. Theres some amazing vista’s, atmospheric caverns and truly picturesque towns. Whilst in places these look quite stunning and require a surprisingly low system spec to achieve full gfx, there are also some large areas of open space which look a little sparse. I think this highlights the main issue of Auteria – lack of players. One of the most important elements of an online RPG is the community which plays it. This is where Auteria falls down a little and whilst there is no reason why you can’t enjoy Auteria as a solo experience, it’s the MMORPG element which attracts users. This is a great shame, whilst people rave about Planeshift, Eternal Lands & Regnum et al, this title has as far as I can tell been overlooked. Fundamentally this is a solid title and think it could be truly great as more people discover it.
Graphically you can’t fault Auteria. The music scores change to fit the environment you are in and whilst very pleasant and well constucted, they are rather short in duration meaning you may tire of their repetition quickly.
The number of quests appears impressive. I have not properly left the “newb” areas and there is already a massive amount of tasks which will show you how the game mechanics work and teach you new skills (whilst giving you funds for your character) You can only play a human race and I would suggest that maybe other races are offered in the future, which could still fit with the storyline in that they have entered Auteria from their respective home worlds.
The game is very easy to get into and the gui is very intuitive, however I think far too much time is required to get your character out of the beginner areas and equip you with some tastier gear. This may put many people off progressing further, but for those that do will find the game revealing its size and variety of gameplay a very rewarding experience. There’s some great touches early in the game which give the player a tempting glimpse into what lies ahead, most notably you are taken on a dragon ride in one of the earlier quests, here you can see the huge landscape of the some of the game world.
On a lighter note a few other points which I hope would be looked at before the program comes out of Beta – Lisa, one of the first characters you meet looks like she’s just walked off the streets of Grand Theft Auto and into the world of Auteria. Arguably this could fit the game storyline in that she has also come from the “normal world” into Auteria, its just I prefer to have my RPG’s with more medieval characters. Secondly I would like characters rank to be displayed for everyone, I think one of the important features of a MMORPG is the ability to “show off” your greatness to others and maybe even a channel announce when a character gains a level. These things to me give incentive to players and create a little competition which will have them returning time after time.
The community that exists in Auteria whilst small, seems experienced and helpful with players who appear to have been at home here for a for some time. They were more than happy to meet up and give advice/help, an important aspect of any MMORPG if it wants to foster a solid community.
All in all this is a great game that desperately needs your support. If you haven’t tried it or are looking for a change from Eternal Lands et al, then I would strongly urge you to give this title a go. I will certainly be playing this for some time to come and hope to see you soon in Auteria! (Character name Daroo)
You can visit the Auteria homepage here.
For those of you who wish to take a peak at Auteria in action:
You can also contact me on Skype: tim.openbytes
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