Shards Online Overview

Reviewed by | Last update: May 13, 2014

Today we’ll be talking about Shards Online from Citadel Studios. The game was first announced in early March when the developer announced that they are working on a ‘badass new sandbox RPG’ called Shards. Quick backstory about Citadel Studios, they are a team that has previous work on MMOs like Ultima Online, Dark Age of Camelot and Warhammer.

Now, two months later they finally release some significant information along with the Kickstarter launch. The headline of the campaign and main selling point is that Shards will be a collection of online worlds where the community has ultimate power, a platform for player generated content. Their press releases boasts that they want to be the first ever player run MMO.

So first off, what is a player run MMO? Is it some super sandbox game where players can basically mold the world as they see fit? Can we code our own features into the game? Create entire worlds to inhabit? Enjoy limitless character progression? Short answer, yes, all of that. Citadel Studios wants to break away from the modern MMO conventions of levels, classes and quest grinds, they want a living virtual world, where stories can emerge naturally as players explore the worlds laid out before them.

Basically players who purchase the game, and have an optional premium subscription if desired, and they’ll run their own ‘shard’, which, to portray it simply is like your own sort of game world. These shards are connected together to form a larger server, or as they call it, a cluster. The clusters tie the shards together with a single rule-set, to enforce fairness among characters in the cluster. You can travel between shards in your cluster with special portals that the server admins, or gods, create.

The moddability on Shards really knows no bounds. You can adjust how combat works and plays out, you can create a new magic skill and its effects, you can create new animal species, create story-lines, quests, create NPCs, equipment, spawners, write AI for NPCs and creatures, create new game modes .. and the list can go on. There’s really an infinite amount of ways to customize your shard and more and more will be added as development goes on I’m sure.

Shards will of course have what we would consider a must for an MMO in this day and age, Crafting to create new items, weapons, armor and such from raw materials, player-housing where you can build your homes with your own architectural style, cultivate the land around you and create everything inside to make yourself comfortable. You’ll even be able to employ NPCs to do tasks that you’re not interested in. You can make them mine for ore all day, or run your crops, whatever.

Let’s quickly talk about combat. And you’ll have to excuse me, the combat may be difficult to really explain, as you can change how combat works depending on your shard. So, if you don’t like how combat works, you can change it. But this is what I gather so far. Shards combat system is tactical and interactive, and your skill as a player will play an important role. You’ll be able to build up any skills that you’d like to suit your character, employ special abilities and basically create your own fighting style. Whether that’s a spell-wielding assassin, or a backstabbing knight mage healer. I dunno, just throwing out words now.

In a sandbox game like this, there should be as few restrictions for how you want to build your character as possible. Shards Online will do this by focusing on skills as the core aspect of character development. You will only have the basic knowledge when you enter the game, like, swinging a weapon. You will learn new skills from a trader in town, or from tombs in a dark dungeon, or from another player who has already mastered them. Once you’ve learned some skills you can start gaining experience towards other skills as you advance. There is a limit to how much skill one mortal can possess which forces you to specialize. Upon reaching your skill cap, you will need to deactivate certain skills in order to gain in others. Skill points in inactive skills are never lost, and players will be able to adjust their character’s specializations periodically.

There’s a ton more about Shards that I can go through, but this video is long enough as it is. Stay tuned here to Attack gaming for more on Shards and every other game you can think of! Leave us a like, a subscribe and we’ll see you in the next video!

Shards Online Review

Reviewed by | Last update: May 13, 2014

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