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Elsword is a free-to-play, online action RPG that uses classic side-scrolling game mechanics in an immersive anime inspired world.
Release Date: Jul 2, 2014
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Masters of the Arena - PvP Character Balancing

September 16

It’s here Elpeeps! Become a Master of the Arena in PvP Season 3. This update is pretty darn huge with a massive overhaul of all classes and characters can easily fill a college textbook! But we will give you the main gist with some visual examples from a few of the characters!!



But for all the nitty gritty details check out the microsite:
http://en.elswordonline.com/masters-of-the-arena/

Full Character Balancing
To help improve gameplay experience all characters will receive improvement in all aspects of combat, which can be broken down into 3 sections (Combos, Actives and Special Actives). Of course there is so much more to this update as you all will see.

Improvements to Combos
Comboing can be tricky but with S3 improvements you’ll see that combo changes become easier to perform and more useful. Interlinking combos becomes more streamlined. For example, Raven’s Reckless Fist combo (>>^ZXX) doesn’t launch enemies into the air but shoves them back a little which makes continue a second combo sequence that much easier to perform.



And for more visual aesthetics, Aisha’s Void Princess loveable bat Angkor makes an appearance in her (>ZXX) which also gives you an added Dark Ball at the final X making it easier to Catch opponents.

Improvements to Actives
Actives become multifunctional and versatile. For example, Siege’s missiles pierces once but it’s possible to hit the same enemy twice for double damage. It has increased range and damage over the old Siege Shelling and has all of the properties of a projectile like not needing to be in range of a target to fire off shots.



Special Actives
There are quite a few special actives that receive improvements. But I would like to cover one purely based on favoritism and that is Code Empress. Oberon and Ophelia are Eve’s servants and she summons them in her actives and special actives. Once you summon they attack and leave. This time they stick around longer when performing Surface Cutting and Electronic Field and will fight for their beloved queen for over 10 seconds.



Item Mall Goodies

This week’s ItemMall Update is pretty awesome… New costumes, new mounts and new accessories! Track down evil doers in style with the new Devil Hunter Costumes.



Our newest mount is the Sacred Fox Mount! It looks especially great for Ara. Flame attacks and foxiness is freakin’ awesome.



Be a spectacle in these fabulous spectacles!! Stay nerdy with new eyewear.

6 comments Read more

Masters of the Arena - Pre-Event

September 9

Hi-ya, Elpeeps! How’s your first week back at school? Hope you’re studying hard so you can catch up in game sooner! Hit the books first, and then you can hit your rivals back in the Elsword Arena, right? ;) In fact, here’s a heads-up—something big is gathering force.



What’s up, you say? Next week's PvP Season 3 + Character Balance Update, that’s what! You’ll get to sneak a little peek as we reveal all about it, little by little, for the next seven days. Tomorrow, find out what it will take to be a PvP star once next week’s patch kicks in, and a bit more. Exciting times, these are. Join the countdown and stay tuned!

Item Mall Goodies

Fashion-wise, Ara, Elesis, and Add are steadily catching up with the Elgang. Get them all decked out in fantastical Mysterious Continent Adventurer costumes starting tonight!



Meanwhile, Ara’s Ice Burner returns with none other than... the Arch Devil *dun-dun-dunnn*



See you all in-game!

10 comments Read more

Reviews

"A great experience right from the beginning — there is so little downtime that you'll find yourself pulling off combos in no time. Combat is where the game truly shines."
--Gamezone

“Winner: 2011 Best Sidescroller”
--http://www.onrpg.com/videos/first-annual-onrpg-online-gaming-awards-w-jamesbl0nde-and-dizzypw/

"Top 3 Action Games - Reader's Choice"
--MMO Site

“Beautiful, 3D stylized scenes cleverly accented with manga charm.”
--GirlGamer

Steam Greenlight

Steam Big Picture

About the Game

Elsword is a free-to-play, online action RPG that uses classic side-scrolling beat ‘em up gameplay mechanics and deep customization to bring a unique manga experience to life.

In Elsword, you star in your own comic book while experiencing all the excitement of a massively multiplayer online game. Get ready for fast-paced gameplay, stunning animation, and epic bosses. Whether conquering hordes of enemies in dungeon runs or showing off your skills in the PvP arena, Elsword is the most intense free-to-play action RPG to date.

Key Features

•Co-Op Gameplay - Party-up with friends to explore over 50 unique and beautifully rendered dungeons, towns, and secret levels.
•Unique Characters, Unique Stories- Players can choose from six customizable characters, each their own unique story, play style and special skills to develop.
•Skill-Based PVP Combat- Elsword offers intense and strategic PvP with matchmaking and multiple competitive modes. Challenge your friends in matches of up to 8 players at a time.
•Customize like Crazy- Each character features multiple job changes, dozens of skills and endless opportunities for customization. Create or discover your personal look.
•Community Support- Constant game updates, item and content expansions, and special events including GM Livestream play sessions, community contests and PVP Tournaments are all a part of the Elsword experience.

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS:Windows 2000
    • Processor:Pentium 3 800MHZ
    • Memory:256 MB RAM
    • Graphics:GeForce MX 400(32M)
    • DirectX®:9.0c
    • Hard Drive:1300 MB HD space
    • Other Requirements:Broadband Internet connection
    Recommended:
    • OS:Windows XP
    • Processor:Pentium 4 2.7 GHZ
    • Memory:512 MB RAM
    • Graphics:GeForce FX5700/ATI Radeon 9600(128M)
    • DirectX®:9.0c
    • Hard Drive:2 GB HD space
    • Other Requirements:Broadband Internet connection
Helpful customer reviews
175 of 262 people (67%) found this review helpful
84.8 hrs on record
Don't let my time spent on this game fool you. I've been on board since Raven's release and it's been quite a roller coaster in terms of my opinion of this game up until now.

Elsword is a great game, don't get me wrong. The mechanics are solid, I haven't run into many glitches, and the general feeling of the game when playing is unique. Being a 2D fighting game, scrolling is to expected when it comes to dungeons. Elsword does it very well. Each dungeon has its own theme and get more fun as the game progresses. With the addition of fields, players have an alternative to obtaining EXP. PvP itself also rewards players with EXP, but in much smaller doses. Skills are flashy, each playable character feels unique, and overall, the game is pretty easy to pick up.

However, some key things set this game back two steps whenever it advances one. Mechanics are solid but latency issues and ping play a large factor in being able to PvP well. More often than not, I find myself dying to lag than skill, even when the other person is better anyway. I've won my share of lag matches, and I always feel bad when a genuinely good player gets beaten because of the awkward connection. Dungeons rehash a lot of the mobs. Certain effects can bolster and change a mob, but for the most part, it just takes more time to kill it. Speaking of which, every dungeon's boss save for the secret dungeons' are extremely easy to kill. It takes two to four 200-300mp skills to down most of the bosses. Some dungeons are too long, especially toward levels 30-40, and feel as though they are just intended to burn precious stamina. Killing mobs in fields also costs stamina, but that was very minor in my opinion. The PvP matchup system runs by what seems to be just ranks. This can cause a lot of problems as some high level players who have already attained high ranks lose matches on purpose and "derank" in order to climb back up and farm for AP, which is currency only obtained through PvP. Skills themselves are not a problem, but more often than not, I find myself using little to no skills on the trash mobs throughout the dungeon. Leveling up in general to get more skills is a pain, especially that dreaded moment when the next quest is level locked and grinding is the only option. Grinding itself isn't that hard, but the community is not very friendly to grinders. The community itself is mediocre. Rudeness and trolls are abound in PvP, loners and the occassional leech can be found in PvE. Another non-game related problem besides the community is the economy. Massive prices, ED being extremely worthless, buying one's way to win through the cash shop etc. The cash shop itself is Pay2Win, and even though it's possible to overcome that (skill notebook, bank perks), it's extremely inconvinient and requires tons more effort. Some features that give the game a very different feel and the player a much easier time are locked down permanently without cash (skill slot B, pets).

Of course Elsword is a good GAME. That's about all it has going for it. Everything that contributes to the game other than the actual mechanics kind of break it. If you can put up with all that as long as I have, then kudos. Elsword is enjoyable, but only so much so.
Posted: July 2
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47 of 68 people (69%) found this review helpful
235.9 hrs on record
OVERVIEW

Elsword is a 2.5D MMORPG and is developed & published by KOG Studios. These company were known for making a really great 2D MMORPG called Grand Chase. This game is basically a spiritual successor to Grand Chase. Despite this game being received critically acclaim by both critics & users,the game suffer from repetitive gameplay and incoherent decisions that the developer made lately such as dungeon no longer drop skill notes and you are force to spend real money to buy it. However does that mean you should avoid this game at all cost ? Not really because this game has it own unique charm put into it. The server is heavily populated ever since the released of Add.

GAMEPLAY : 7/10

When you start off the game. Instead of being able to create your own character,you are given to choose a gender class locked character. While this might be a downside for some people,each of this character have a unique background story and different fighthing style.

Tutorial doesn't explain much about the game so you left wondering what you must do.

There is two ways you can level up,either by training in field or by playing dungeon with a bunch of random people.

Level progression is balanced ( you gain don't level extremely fast and slow at the same times ) but skills progression is extremely linear.

Tree skills only offer 2 different sets of skills and optional skills for you to choose,once you choose one,you cannot choose the others unless by using skills resets.

Another downside would be you only can assign 4 skills & 3 items slots so if you want to expand them then you need to buy using real cash in the item mall.

Quest can be extremely repetitive at times since it required you to play the same dungeon 3-5 times in order to progress to the next one.

Another problem would be the stamina bar. If you stamina bar reach zero,you couldn't get any experience points killing monster or completing dungeons. I don't understand why the developer think would be a great idea to implement a facebook like game stamina feature. You only get unlimited stamina during Friday-Sunday.

In-game money is not difficult to earn considering the item drop rate is quite high and you able to sell off you items in market too ( you don't need to use real cash to set up your own market ).

GRAPHICS : 9/10

By far one of the best 2.5D MMO graphics i seen so far.

The gorgeous artstyle and colorful visual impressed me a lot. Both the character and the monster design look pretty appealing.

One minor issue i have is that there is seem to be a lot of clipping issue when you fully equip your character with rediculous gear especially when two people stand together at the same area.

Different segment of area have different looks on them so you won't have to see the same repeatable background.

The interface is quite ok i would say while at the same time it a clutter mess and you can't customize it.

AUDIO : 9/10

Wide variety of soundtrack you going to listen as you progress far into the game. A lot of them sound like it comes from the Tales series game which had outstanding soundtrack.

All the characters in the game have Korean voice ( only when you initiate a skill they will speak in English ) and they are all well done ( some of the voice suite very well to all the playable characters ).

Some of the sound effects sometimes acts weird if you heard multiple critical strike.

Nevertheless i don't have much problem with the sound effects.

LONG-LASTING APPEAL : 7/10

For a 2.5D games,it provide sufficient fun for you to keep playing.

There is PvE,PvP,marriage,guild system as well as raid boss. Even though you level your character to max level,you can still choose to play other characters to test his/her ability & playstyle.

There is a new event every 2-4 weeks depending on how the current event last.

FINAL VERDICT : 8/10

While the gameplay fall short and there is many restriction within the game,i say give it a shot just to try out the gameplay mechanics considering it rare to find a 2.5D MMO games.

It add a ton of fun if you could introduced a friends to join with you in playing this game.

It pretty addictive once you get used to the combat mechanic since it fast paced and well executed.

Oh and the player base of this game is pretty strong especially during weekend.

If you wondering if the game is pay 2 win,it actaully not. Only pay 2 win aspect i see is the additional skill & items slots you have to purchase but that is a minor issue and it optional.

Just stay away from PvP and focus entirely on it PvE. From there you gonna have a lot of fun in this game.

GRADE : B ( Great )
Posted: May 24
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13 of 16 people (81%) found this review helpful
2,060.4 hrs on record
As someone with over 2000 hours clocked into this game, I can say without a shadow of a doubt that this is a pay to win game. You can travel through most of the game without cash, but if you wish to succeed at all in it, you will need cash. $10 for a repair scroll. $13 for a marriage (Note, the site only manages increments of 5, 10, 20 and 100 so anything odd numbered requires a larger than your desire purchase), as well as other 'interesting' payment methods. Such as if you wish to expedite your Hyper Skill work and just buy it, it's 550 KC, however, they don't dabble in "pay what you need", so you need to pay 10 just for that 550.

The PVP is by far one of the worst pvp systems I have ever had the sheer disgust of dealing with. It's almost 100% completely gear based. Someone with a highly reinforced weapon and armor 'will' plow through you with little effort. If it's not their gear ending your chances, it's their character. The balancing in this game only grows worse and worse each big update. Chung, the gun user, when built right, now has almost infinite Super Armor capabilities. Making him impossible to combo against. AND THEN IF THOSE 2 aren't stopping you, it's lag. Opponents randomly walking out of your combos, dropping away from them, with 0 care in the world.

MP Breaking is a method to escape combos, but there have been many times where I simply saw them walk away from my attack, no Super Armor, not even any damage, just walked away. It's so infuriating seeing hours of progress in your pvp rank get taken down in 1 to 2 matches NOT because you were outclassed, NOT because you were outskilled, but because the person had stronger gear than you, or lagged, or simply was better than the class you used.

The only redeeming thing this game has is it's community. You can literally trust a stranger with 2 Billion ED (Ingame currnecy) and actually receive your item you payed for. The reason why that's an issue is you can only trade in increments of 700 million, so you will end up accepting a trade twice to 3 times over giving them all your money before you receive your item. They could so easily run away, but they don't, they're trustworthy. Everyone there is kind, enjoyable, very, very weeaboo not gonna lie. But at least they were cool.

The gameplay itself is still enjoyable in dungeon runs, it's fast, fluid action slashing and destroying enemies. And that's enjoyable, or at least it is to me, for 3 level cap characters. But once you get that far, you have to start grinding and start paying to keep up, needing to buy Ores and garbage to make your weapon stronger so you can actually excel at your class. And that just wont happen if you run free the entire time.

With that said, I can't recommend this game to users that want an mmo they can really dive into. This game is worth a look at best, but barely worth truly getting into for the long run. The Pay to Win model becomes all the more apparent as you level up and the sense of feeling cheated out of victory as well as simply too weak (even when you have end-game gear) is a feeling games like this should not generate within their players. It's a sense of worthlessness that you can't ignore, and when you've reached such a feeling, you start questioning if the game is really worth your time, rather than if it's worth your time to achieve the stronger gear that you were just clobbered with.

Posted: September 18
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12 of 15 people (80%) found this review helpful
288.6 hrs on record
+Overall-
This game is awesome Its a fighting game an a MMO all in one. I personally love playing RF because you punch everything but it has a variety of play styles for everbody for example Deadly Chaser a job class for chung is the Guile of Elsword an Elsword is kinda the Ryu. Not only does it contibute to the fighting Genre of fans but also anime fans because it has that feel but not too much to make both sides even.

+Classes-
So basically how it goes is you pick a character instead of a class (like a fighting game) an you proceed to level up the character and once you reach lvl 15 you get your first job change an after you reach 35 I believe you get your 2nd job change which is going to be your character from then on. each character will end up having 3 job classes and each one will be extremely different from the others, I'll use Raven as an example.

-Reckless Fist is basically a character where he can take hits but aslo dish out damage aswell an uses his nasod arm instead of his sword doing high magical damage with super armor most of the time.

-Blade Master focues around using his blade with very fast attacks before his opponent can but is very vulnerable to magical and a little bit to physical but he avoids this by being very mobile.

-Veteran Commander is a cross between ranged and close combat basically a shoto character in a fighting game he isnt very tanky but he has good combos, good mobility and has high damaging specials making him a really dangerous class.

Overall the class system is really good because there is something for everyone, If you like a powerhouse but like to be a little tanky go for Raven, if you like zoneing your oppoenent go Rena or Aisha, You wanna be in the opponents face almost all the time being very mobile and have good reach Ara, You just wanna go on full dmg not caring about defense Add is a good character to do that awell. Overall there is so much variety right now in elsword everyone can find a character.

+Gamplay

Now this is the thing every person in a fighting game cares about and also in MMOs the gameplay.
-PVP
right now Elsword has a balanced system after a certain amount of hits a persons KDR(Knock Down Rate) will go up an make them fall ending the combo, but people can work around this and do something called a KD reset where they hit the oppoent in the air most of the time and bring them back down before they fall to the ground allowing them to continue the combo. Now before you think the first hit decides the match, MP (Mana Points) is a resource which everyone has and once you reach a hundred you can hold Light or Heavy attack and Mana Break forcing youself to fall ending the combo but like any other fighting game being on the ground is a big dis-advantage so stay mobile is key in elsword there is no true block button aside from one of Elsword's actives(I mean the character not the game, confusing yes I know). But like most fighting games it comes down to skill who can utilize his kit better then the other player, but like all other PVP games there is something OP once in awhile right now Ara and Elesis are very strong character being very mobile an sometimes having super armor and MAJOR damage moves one example to prove this is that in all big heard tournaments in Elsword usally Ara's always win because one of her jobs is insanley powerful. With the recently added character Add he is probably the most damaging character once he gets his conditions set but he has 0 to none defense being half healthed usally in one combo. But everything is usally patched or buffs are given to other character to balance it out, Elsword does a pretty good job about this so dont judge the game by a few characters.

-PVE
This is something Elsword is minorly known for but before you go saying, "I side scroller? Thats probably so easy!". You are wrong because in dungens later in the game become really challenging making you follow mechanics so you cant have an easy time. It also has insane raid bosses that have tricky patterns to memorize making it a real challenge, also seasonal raid bossess so you get something new most of the time. I will say that some dungens can be done pretty easy if you got or bought a "Mount" basically these things only use is for dungens doing insane damage for a set amount of time but it doesnt entirley break the game one because they are expensive and they only have 100 stamina an may only last around 5-6 minutes at a time. Overall Elsword PVP isnt boring because it most of the time comes up with something knew almost every month or so actually quicker then that sometimes, it is in no way easy or boring.

+Graphics

They have simple graphics that look good, its not next gen realistic graphics its just simple but they somehow make it seem really appealing with their character designs and NPC design aswell, then the monsters arent those stupid over anime monsters that you see in other anime MMO RPGs, they actually make wood golems that wear a mask looking like they are hiding a scary face or something, overall this is short and sweet to the point its nothing special but it isnt bad in the slightest way. If you want a comparison go look at Grand Chase compared to this game.

+Final

I am probably skipping some points but this has been written long enough the overall game is good its fair to people who just want to play the game and not spend money in some aspects its a little bit like "Pay-to-Win" but overall no people buy accesorys to make there character look cool and the buffs they get from them aren't that big so it doesnt make a huge difference, if you dont want to spend money thats fine Elsword gives pleny of oppurtinitys to get accesorys for your character absolutely free for just playing the game. It is in no way a pay to win game. Gameplay is solid most of the time aside from some character being a little OP an some character having unfair moves but I say again it comes down to raw skill...most of the time! PVE is not boring an doesnt lack excitment with over the top bosses like a giant mecha robot with wings that fire giant lasers at you an can back hand you and instant kill you. Graphics are nice and simple also are really well used, this game is awesome at keeping to a fighting game Genre and MMO aswell I recomend that you try it atleast once if your a fighting game fan, get to the 2nd job class get to around 50 and start pvping after you get your gear (which is really easy to get) an start playing, watch some videos of people comboing learn an I gurantee you will have fun.

I forgot to mention so many things in this review but this is basically the meat of it all so if you think this sounds awesome to you go join the community because its growing very slowly each day,
Posted: August 4
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6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
27.9 hrs on record
Best game ive played in a long time. it reminds me of Wow but 2D and dungeons and PvP being a lot faster and the fact elsword is free. this game is great to play with friends since its never the same since you can do many jobs for your class. another great thing is the wide-spread choice of characters you can play as and not have to pay for. This game also has great graphics and gameplay compared to other 2d MMORPG's such as la tale. i recommend this game to anyone who likes fast pace MMORPG dungeons and a wide varity of characters and jobs to play as. 10/10 would recommend this game
Posted: July 29
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145 of 187 people (78%) found this review helpful
1,208.8 hrs on record
Got nothin much to say except I CAN'T... STOP... PLAYING... THIS ADDICTING GAME!!!! Fast paced side-scrolling hack and slash action complemented with an amazing variety of character classes, each with their own unique specialties that make them stand out, beautifully rendered background environments (since this is a side scroller) almost like an amazing artist just painted the whole thing with awesomeness and HOLY FREAKIN HELL!!!!... THE MUSIC IN MANY PARTS OF THIS GAME IS INCREDIBLE!!!!... I Just have some minor issues with this game... Stamina bar and tedious last class change quests and skill unlock quests... ( DAMN YOU AND YOUR ERRANDS CAMILLA!!!! DX)... Overall I would REALLY recommend this game to anyone that loves either good locales, good music, or some of the best side-scrolling gameplay Ive seen in my life... If you feel tempted to try, me and my Deadly Chaser will see ya in glorious PvP! (unless you face a Dimension Witch or an Infinity sword were against those either you dodge everything or you're freakin screwed... or just put a giant amount of unexpected burst on them like I do XD)
Posted: November 25, 2013
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