Corum Online Review
By mmohut's Erhan Altay
Corum Online is a little known MMORPG currently published by gPotato. The game has a few unique features like a world map and player run dungeons but these do not redeem the otherwise archaic feel of the game. Like Cronous, Corum does have that old school action RPG feel to it that some nostalgic gamers may be looking for.
How’s My Hair?
There are two live servers for Corum, both of which have at best a moderate population. Character creation is limited to selecting a class and choosing from among several hair styles. Players cannot chose their gender; three of the classes are male and three are female. All but the Arcus (archer) class are humans, the Arcus are Dark Elves. There’s no need to worry about stats during character creation so just pick a class and jump right in. For more information on the classes, see the overview.
Corum has no tutorial, optional or otherwise. Players start out in town with a help menu open to provide some game tips. Anyone familiar with MMORPGs will be able to get a grasp of the controls and interface fairly quick. Movement is done exclusively with the mouse and the arrow keys and the mouse wheel control the camera. Activated skills such as ‘bash’ can be assigned to the left or rick mouse button, sort of like the system used in Diablo II. There are several NPCs scattered around town who have quests available but none of these are worth doing. When you have a feel for the controls, its best to leave town and enter the world map. This can be done either by walking through the town gates or by hitting escape and selecting the ‘teleport to world map’ option.
Whoa, a World Map. I Remember These!
When players leave town for the first time they may be taken back by what they see, I know I was. Movement between zones such as towns and dungeons is done through a world map where each of these zones is represented by an icon. Players are free to move about this world map without fear of attack, so no random encounters like the kind in console RPGs to worry about. Most zones have level requirements so new players are restricted to one of several beginner dungeons. The world map is further broken down into areas. Players have to go through special connecting zones to move from one area to another. A chart can be brought up by hitting ‘m’ which shows the two continents and the areas each is made up of. Not all areas are yet implemented; grayed out areas are not accessible by players.
Grinding in a Rat Maze
Corum Online has some of the most boring dungeon designs I have ever witnessed. The only thing that comes close in my personal gaming experience are the dungeons in the Dark Cloud series, but those games had other redeeming qualities. Each floor of a dungeon has 2-3 monster types and dull, repetitive segments with bland colors. More often than not you’ll be the only one in the entire dungeon, add to this the fact that the dungeon areas are often large with monsters spread thinly and you got a very empty feeling MMORPG. Luckily, you won’t have to spend much time in the beginner dungeons, just kill a few cactus people, orcs, and mimics to level a few times than head back to town. Each level, players are given 5 points to distribute among 5 stats; EGO, STR, INT, DEX, and VIT. A single skill point is also earned per level but deciding where to put it isn’t a problem during the early levels. Most classes only have 1-2 skills available at level 1 and as they pump those skills, new ones slowly become available. Interestingly, players can eventually learn skills belonging to other classes. With a high level cap, over 160, each character can specialize in many ways.
Trial Dungeon, Here I Come!
The reason early game quests are completely worthless in Corum is the Trial Dungeon located in the starting town. A large red portal teleports players to this special dungeon where they must do battle against a single foe. Defeating this monster rewards at least 4-5 levels and can be repeated up to 10 times. Each time, the monster you face gets stronger so be sure to stock up on potions and put your stat/skill points to good use. When you’ve beaten the Trial Dungeon all 10 times, you’ll be around level 31 and be rewarded 1 million Karz, the game’s currency. Most new player won’t be able to defeat the first trial boss at level one which is why I recommended you go outside town and level up a few times in the newbie dungeons. If you’re fortunate enough to have a powerful weapon, received either from another player or one of your own alternative characters, you can complete the trial dungeon starting at level 1.
Hurry Along to PvP
I suspect this experience / money piñata was added to speed players along the boring early levels and get them ready for the game’s PvP faster. Corum Online does have a very interesting PvP system; players can create their own temporary zones on the world map which other players can enter by paying a set fee. Inside this zone, both the host and guests can battle it out arena style. Corum’s other major PvP feature is the guild based Dungeon Siege. Guilds can take control of dungeons and receive income from them based on how popular they are. Of course the popular dungeons are heavily contested between the top guilds. While playing, I saw that 20 of the game’s 50 or so dungeons were controlled by player run guilds. Besides PvP, Corum has a few standard MMORPG features such as personal shops, equipment enchantment and a friend list. Even with these few unique features, I cannot recommend Corum Online. There are just too many better free games out there, even in the PvP centric genre. The publisher, gPotato, hosts many impressive MMORPGs like Fly For Fun and Rappelz but Corum is one of the weakest games in their lineup.
Final Verdict: Poor
Corum Online is a simple game with jagged, old graphics. Dungeon and monster designs are bland, character customization is limited and empty beginner zones make Corum Online a very difficult game to get into. The only people I see playing this game are those who’s friends coax them into it or those who’re nostalgic for the early days of the RPG genre.
Pros: +Varied class choices (6.) +Unique world map feature. +Clans fight for control of dungeons. +Trial dungeon in town levels players fast.
Cons: -Dated graphics. -Boring dungeon designs. -Limited character customization. -Lack of direction. -Jagged controls.