2 Moons: Open Beta

Guest Post

“No mercy for the weak, no pity for the dying, no tears for the slain!” declares the tagline for David Perry’s latest game in open beta; 2 Moons.

The game – yet another fantasy-based MMO – takes place in Haran, or “the Immortal Land,” during a period of growing dissonance. Centuries before, a heroine named Trieste had saved Haran from an event known as The Corruption by sacrificing her own life and sealing evil beings known as the Pitborn back into their own realm (along with their master, Abaddon).

Now, with Trieste’s magic wearing off, the seal is breaking and the Pitborn threaten Haran once again. And, as before, the people of Haran are forced to fight.

Like most free MMOs, 2 Moons has the graphic look of Korean offerings. Which makes sense since several of David Perry’s recent games are ports of Korean games for the American audience. Unlike a lot of other free MMOs, 2 Moons has a recommended age range of 17 and over. (I’ve yet to come across the material that warrants such a recommendation, but I’ll guess that it’s there somewhere.)

So, how does this game fare compared to others? Well, to be honest, my first reaction to the game was one of perplexity and minor frustration. This, however, wasn’t due to the actual difficulty of the game but rather its vagueness.

Character creation, for one, was overly simplified. Unlike most games where character creation involves picking a race, class, clothing, body features, etc, 2 Moons character creation consists of choosing a race/class and a name. The gender of the character is automatic depending on what race you choose, and there’s no way to alter the appearance of your character right off the bat. Clothing can be picked up later in game and will make some difference as to the character’s appearance, but that’s about it.

Once your character is created and you’re dropped into the world of Haran, you find yourself at a respawn point where you’re immediately given a quest by an NPC standing there to go look for another NPC and speak to them. Once this first quest is completed, you may find it difficult to find another one right away. All quests are level-sensitive, and the game won’t allow you to collect any that are even one level above what you are. And, no, you will not hit Level 2 with your first quest.

You may consider going to fight some of the creatures in the area. I did. Not such a bright idea, as it turns out; you start the game without any kind of weaponry whatsoever, and even the lowest-level creatures will take you down before you can land a few good blows with your fists.

The truly annoying thing about this was that the NPC you had to look for in the first place has quests to give, but you can’t get them until you reach level 2.

So what do you do? Well, in my case, I ran around for a while looking for anyone who had a quest that I could accept. I spoke to every NPC in the castle and eventually ran into a vendor that could sell me weaponry and armor for my character class. Suddenly, I was able to kill creatures in order to grind to the next level that quests were available for, and the world of Haran became a somewhat more interesting place.

Despite the initial annoyances of the game, I eventually began to warm up to 2 Moons a little. In fact, there was a moment where I thought to myself: “That’s pretty damned cool.” This occurred when I was running through the castle and was suddenly attacked by an enemy about six times my size.

As it turns out, the only two “cities” left in Haran have siege portals that the Pitborn can be brought through at any time. And if you’re in the way, you <big>will</big> be squashed. This surprised me more than a little since the creatures in the area outside the castle will not attack first. As a result, I didn’t actually try to get out of the way the first time.

Sadly, this would have to be considered the high point of the game for me. While I enjoyed the game for its hack ’n slash nature and the weapon I had picked up for my character was nice, there were just too many things that annoyed me in the game to keep me around for the long run.

I understand that quests have appropriate levels, but to not allow me to gather them and do them at my convenience is frustrating. The fact that I’ll have to run back later on to just pick up quests I could have grabbed to begin with is more than annoying.

I’m also not very fond of the PvP setup. 2 Moons is one of those games where you must give consent in order for someone to fight you. This is all well and good except for the fact that every time I had a PvP request, I would be in the middle of doing something else and the request would just pop up on my screen. Now… I will say that this is less of a game problem than it is a player problem. But, unless I’m in a PvP situation such as the ones in EVE – where you know you’re never safe – I would at least like a “hello” or something before someone throws a PvP request at me.

Despite the problems mentioned above, I will say that 2 Moons as it stands now is an okay way to kill some time. I don’t see myself investing a lot of time in it yet, but who knows what changes may be in store after the open beta ends and the game officially launches?