Champions Online has had a make over and is now free to play and hosted by Perfect World. Originally coded and made by Cryptic we now have the MMO that is free to play and actually quite fun to play as well. From the time that you log in to the time you log out you do have fun with the characters that you make. Even making a character is fun to do and you could spend an hour or more just doing that. The hardest part of the game was waiting for the game to download and then patch itself. For those with very VERY fast download speeds it wont take you long but those with slow DSL will be waiting a while as when I downloaded the game it was 3 and a half gigs and the patch was 256 megs. Even after patching the game still is loading areas and textures in the background which might give you a few hick-ups now and then but nothing that will get your character killed as you play.
I played the game for about 4 hours through the tutorial and character creation. The first time through I just did everything as fast as I could and then took my time with the process so that I could let you all know about it. I will tell you this, I didn’t even realize I had been playing for 4 hours till my wife asked me if I was going to come to bed any time soon. That was when I noticed just how long I had been in game. It really is that good and anyone that likes to play super heroes or remembers the old RPG Champions is going to enjoy what is laid out here for you to play.
I am glad that Perfect World sent me the invitation to try out the game. As I said creation of the character itself can give you almost as much fun as playing the game especially for those that like to be anal about how their character looks. You first start by choosing what kind of Arch Type of character you want to play. Each type will give you different abilities and different combat options when you are in game. There is also a fusion option but I didn’t get to test that out as of yet as I didn’t get my character high enough in levels and resources to try that one out. It is supposed to allow you to fuse together different abilities to be able to create new one, but you will just have to try that out later in the game. Right now we need to get your character made for play. The process of creating one can be either intense or basic, you have the choice and that is what is so nice about the process.
After you have chosen the type of character you want to play you are now able to get to the looks of your character so that you can make it uniquely your own. You have sliders galore in the advanced options. With the sliders you can control and shape just about every single part of your characters body from the size of the feet, the largeness of the hands and for the orb fixated individuals the size and shape of the hips and the chest. You even get to set how big or small the eyes, nose, mouth and head are. You can even make long pointed Asian elven ears if you want. Then after all that you get to play with the colors of things and we haven’t even gotten to the clothing yet. You get massive amounts of options for makeup, eye color, skin color and even the color of the nails. From body parts to the clothing your character is wearing you get to control it all and choose just what you want to have for your new superhero, even their name and background. It is all up to you how you want it to be, just how a MMO game should be.
As to game play the controls are straight forward and simple to those that are familiar with online games. You can play it WASD Doom style, you can use a joystick or you can use an XBOX type of game pad. You can also use a mouse as well or multiple combinations as the keyboard controls are always active. To quickly get to an attack you can TAB through the objects, enemies and people to get your target and then you click on or press the number that matches up with the attack that you want to do. Those can even be in the order you want if you are assigning keys and functions. You are able to mold the controls to fit your style of play so that you can quickly and easily deal with combat situations.
The tutorial of the game is not difficult and steps you through all the ways that the game is played. It will show you how to interact with people and the enemy. It will show you how to target and how to attack and even how to pick items up or even to interact with the environment to be able to hit your enemy with a bench or street lamp. They want you to know how to do it all and if you forget or get lost you have a handy map that will show you the way to where you need to be. Even the people you talked to in the past will answer some questions and give you information about what it is that you need to do. Everything is interactive and the only parts that are blocked off are actually blocked with story telling elements as in the bubble that you are in is in fact a force field that the enemy has put in place to make it easier to attack and control the city.
This is going to be a game that most are going to enjoy right from the start and will find hours of enjoyment in the game. Best of all it is free to play and you even get 2 free character slots to play with. As it is a Perfect World game you know there is going to be micro processing of things and it is up to you if you want to pay for items or not. Just keep in mind that if you see someone with some rad gear that they paid for and you can not get it, remember they PAID for it. Real money will get your options and opportunities that the free player may never see, just something to keep in mind.
Enjoy this gallery of screen shots that I took while in game: