(Don't use the lack of playtime recorded as a judgement of my review. I played this game on and off since 2006, long before this game was put on steam and have continued playing it without steam)
This is one of the best games out there in the mmo genre, could be considered the single best mmo when it comes to this type of graphical style, it's been around since 2006 and there are still a ton of people in the game and the developers have consistently added more to the game since then. The game has regular events, like Christmas, saint Patrick's day, World cup to name a few.
The game is supported by a item shop, but realistically you could play the whole game without ever spending any money in it, most of what is sold on the item shop is cosmetic and the things that are not are mostly things that speed up your process in the game, like for example Exp boost. The item shop does sell a few skills, but you do not really have to get these and you won't feel gimped if you don't have them, that is the only thing you could consider needing to spend money on, but it is not required. A great thing about how Rose Online does the item shop however is that everything that is sold in the item shop can be given or resold to other players, so if you really did not want to spend money in the item shop but still wanted an item from the item shop you could easily buy it from another player who is selling it for in game money, be aware though that you probably won't be able to do this early on in the game, because the prices of item shop objects are not cheap.
The game has an amazing crafting system, it may not be in depth as other games and may not feel as satisfying when you craft objects but it's massive. Nearly ever single drop in the game (like 90%) is used as a crafting component, the rest of the things that are not are gear, health/mana pickups, vendor trash or a gift box, which there are different types and contain something in it when you open it, like having a random chance of getting a crafting component out of 5 types, basically it's a dirty crystal and when you open it you find out what color crystal it is and crystals are used to craft objects.
CAUTION, it is not recommended you sell your loot to the first few shops you find, there are a few people in the game that try to take advantage of new players lack of knowledge and will pay you very little for your loot (some people may call them scammers,me included, but they are not really, as a new player you should be cautious of things like this in any game) , it may look like a lot when you only have 200G and a player offers you 2.000G for a object you picked up 7 of, but you will kick yourself when you get to the second city and find out the average price you could have gotten for that item was 40.000G. Do NO sell any of your materials before you get to the second main city in the game called City of Junon Polis. When you get to this city take some time and look around at a bunch of shops, there are many players shops set up here, take your time go around and look at the prices of stuff when you have looked at a good selection of shops, you will have a better idea what stuff is worth and can make a better decision on how much to let things go at.
If you want to craft your own objects, you will have to roll a Dealer, which is the only class that can craft objects. If you do choose to craft objects, do not go and pick up every crafting skill there is as doing so will make your character at killing stuff and thus be very slow at leveling. Crafting skills are part of your normal skills and putting a point into crafting means one less point into a damage dealing ability. Usually just pick one or two crafting discipline, and get a few combat skills and save the rest for your advanced job. Also to help you if you choose to become a crafter CON (concentration) increases your chance at succesfully crafting and objects and SEN (sense) increases your chance of getting extra stats on the crafted object. Carts,Castle Gear and Gems can't have extra stats so, sense is less useful if you want to craft these items
There are 4 basic classes and 8 advanced classes in the game, everyone starts out as a visitor and when you reach level 10 you can choose on of the basic classes, the basic classes each have two main trees, Muse (mage) has a healing tree and a damage tree. Soldier (Warrior) has a 1 handed tree and a 2 handed tree (1 handed is more for tanking and 2 more for dealing damage). Hawker (rogue/assassin) has a Melee tree and a Range Tree (and then melee has two types, Katar (firstweapon) and dual swords). Dealer has an offensive tree and a crafting tree (crafting tree has some offensive abilities but for the most part it's crafting focused). Each of the basic classes has a basic tree, which help them no matter what they side they go, Muse has increased INT, mana and mana regen. Soldier has increased Strength, increased damage and increased health. Hawker has increased Dex, increased attack power and increased attack speed. Dealer has Increased CON (Con increases their damage also), increased SEN and increased movement speed.
Try to always be in a party, Rose Online rewards you for being in a party, it has this system called Party Level, it starts at and can go all the way to 50. Party level gives you bonus EXP, the higher the party level the higher the bonus EXP is, this rewards people for grouping up. Some people even leave their game on to save their party level when it gets really high and then when they come back to play tomorrow they don't have to rebuild the party level and get increased bonus EXP from the start You can be in a party and gain exp as long as nobody in the party is more then 20 levels apart from each other. Getting an AOE skill is highly advisable, what many groups do is go to a location on the map where there are a good amount of mobs, have someone pull a group of mobs and that that person brings the group of mobs the the party and then everyone AOE's the enemies down, this way you speed up your leveling by a lot.
Hope this extended review helped you and have fun in Rose Online.