Swordsman Online (also known as just Swordsman) is a free-to-play MMORPG from Perfect World Entertainment. Swordsman Online is based on the popular novel, The Smiling, Proud Wanderer by Louis Cha, with Chinese martial arts being central to the game’s visuals and combat style. The game has seen massive success in the Chinese market for a number of years and is finally being localized for a western audience thanks to efforts from PWE.
Players will take on the role of a wandering warrior whose journey leads him/her on an unexpected adventure to avenge their destroyed village and become a great hero. Player and guild actions will dynamically alter the world, changing the environment according to user decisions. Towns can be saved or demolished, unique NPCs and quests can become available and secrets may reveal themselves, all based on the elaborate branching narrative of player choice.
There are ten different schools of martial arts available in Swordsman Online, of which players will choose one to follow. Combat is heavily action-based and relies less on character stats and more on player skills. Quick reflexes and mastering your character’s movement and abilities will give players a distinct upper hand in both PvE and PvP combat. For more details on all of Swordsman Online’s classes, check out our Swordsman Character Classes Guide.
One unique feature of Swordsman Online is that publisher Perfect World Entertainment chose to preserve the essence and culture of the Chinese version by adding subtitles to the Chinese cutscenes rather than dubbing over with English voice actors. Potentially a polarizing decision, it allows the player to experience the game as it was originally intended.
Swordsman Online saw full release in July of 2014 (Release Date: July 29th) and is, of course, free-to-play for all users.