Closed Beta Date: 16th December 2015
Black Desert Online is a Korean MMO which is currently being localised for Western audiences and is in the closed beta stage of its development. Although the developers have not announced a payment model, it will likely stick to the Korean pay model, of the game being free to play but having an in-game cash shop so you can purchase items with real money.
The game currently offers 6 different classes which are gender locked: Warrior, Ranger, Sorceress, Berserker, Wizard and Tamer. There will also be 6 other classes available to play after the games launch. Character customization is one of the most advanced yet, allowing you to alter any aspect of your character. Some of the features include changing the shape of your hair and adding highlights, to a face building mechanic which you can drag, move, push and pull any part of the face for precise control over your appearance. Adding make up and tattoos is also possible, as well as changing your eye type to dozens of different styles like hearts, stars, diamonds or none at all for the blind Kung Fu master look.
Gameplay is focused on action combat system, similar to TERA and Guild Wars 2. Players rely on agility and moving around during combat to dodge enemies, while attacking and using skills. The basic left and right click skills are smooth and well stylised to give you a great looking combat experience that is also fun.
Other features include the usual such as crafting, collecting resources and trading, but the mount system is a little different. First you need to tame animals such as wild horses to use as mounts so that you can explore areas faster than you would by foot. In-game player housing allows you to have your own maids, pets and extravagant furniture. Housing is also broken down by different uses such as a warehouse, forging workshops for jewellery or tools and a normal house. Gamers who enjoy player housing, will like Black Desert Online’s system which seems more fleshed out than others through a building system similar to The Sims.
Freedom to explore is quite impressive using a climbing mechanic that allows you to tackle quests by taking different routes. Climb a castle instead of going through the front door or up a mountain to get to a new area more quickly. While exploring you can also destroy parts of the environment such as long grass, trees, rocks and more. Use the same destructibility against another players by attacking their camps or killing their mounts. Be careful however, other players will be able to do the same as you.
Black Desert Online is a visually stunning giant open world, with in depth character customisation and fast, fluid combat. Quests are fully voiced with cut scenes that give them a closer feeling of a single player game in an MMO world. Player housing is seems more advanced thank the standard, with the ability to turn almost any building in the world into your own house. Guilds can also ‘own’ towns and cities and make changes to them such as displaying their guild crests.
Black Desert Online is currently in closed beta which you can gain access to by purchasing a pre-order package.