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Author Topic: MouRO  (Read 2526 times)

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Offline MarioSoldier

MouRO
« on: Apr 07, 2009, 04:50 PM »
Foreword

I remember when I was younger, whenever I would visit my cousin's house -- before he dyed his hair orange and got all those Gundam figurines or whatever -- I would always see him engrossed in Ragnarok Online. I started playing as well and after a while, I lost interest. Vanilla RO couldn't hold my attention as long as Diablo II (wrecked my 10th grade year) or even ROSE Online.

Cut to a whole bunch of years later (August of last year), around the time I finished with Maple Story private servers, I found a topic on a message board about MouRO. I was intrigued, especially with all the changes done to classes that I haven't even gotten to play (quit long before Morrocc became a mess). I joined a new and growing group that was dedicated to rule over Mou's WoE scene only to have our ragtag and messily equipped guild be defeated by a bunch of the regulars (Jacob, Stonechimes, Kookie to name a few). Taking over the server was definitely not going to be as easy as it sounded, despite the low population of the server. But perhaps it was a good thing, because I suddenly became engrossed into making my builds as efficient as possible in order to beat said people.

Casually Engrossing

As stated on the server overview of MouRO: "MouRO is a highly customized server for the casual player meant to be different, interesting, and challenging. No custom stuff client-side beyond dyes; no custom quests, 100% oriented to be a different fighting experience, and designed to make partying extremely desirable." - Skotlex

What does this statement actually mean? At first glance it may seem like a haven for casual players to become gods within a short amount of time. But what most people seem to miss is the "different, interesting and challenging" part of the mission statement. This isn't some sort of high rate server with 1000% drops and a set instant cast, but a server that provides a challenge for anyone (especially casual players) to keep them engrossed in Mou. This, ironically, is a shining point for the server. Unfortunately, a good chunk new players come with the mindset of "just another RO server to grind on" where simply grinding won't cut it. One must plan, one must equip, and one must fight with an understanding of their class in order to reach the level cap of 150/140.

However, the issue of it "being easy to level to 150/140" comes up quite often, especially in dissenting reviews. To reach such a level requires going into high-end dungeons. Even with the spiffy @diff command that comes with the game and allows enemies to be fought at up to 2x your own level, if one wants to rush to 150/140 they must head into high-end dungeons in order to reach that. Whether or not this was Skot's intent is his own, but it maintains a steady challenge for the player levelling up throughout the entire lifetime of said character. With the newly implemented Level 300 monster cap, even those who have achieved Level 150 can have trouble staying alive when the monsters are nearly twice their level and twice their strength. When it's becoming a grind, just set @diff to 100 -- I guarantee it'll wake you up and make you more alert about the enemy.

Class balancing also plays a pivotal role in the levelling of characters. The classes, for the most part, are balanced. Of course, there's a few hicks along the way but that's why Skot allows a General Suggestions thread to address problems with Mou so that he can check them and fix them. The balancing of the classes allows parties to be diverse, with each class contributing different aspects that affect the party's survival.

Having about 11 150/140 characters of my own on the server now, I can personally attest that it takes a lot of dedication and careful gearing to achieve 150/140 on a single character. The only reason why it should be easy to level to 150/140 is because of the party-oriented environment. If you have reached 150/140 on MouRO before, chances are you've been part of a multitude of high-end parties in order to reach that stage. The party-oriented system also allows socialization during parties or in general, so you can joke around as you are fighting to stay alive.

Of course, the downside to a challenging Mou is the sight of entire parties being wiped out by monsters. Since monsters have a random set of skills to draw from every day, you'll never be fully prepared against the mighty Poring who suddenly used Lord of Vermillion on you. If you don't like getting your behind handed to you often, then this server is not for you.

Socially Booming

Speaking of socialization, the GM-less system of MouRO makes the server even more interesting. Events are mostly left up to the players, which is both bad and good. Negatively speaking, no GMs limits the kinds of events that can be held in RO and at a glance the enforcement of the server. However, Skotlex (besides the /ex command that no one ever uses) added the karma system - implemented to cut down on spamming on both regular chat and @main chat. Karma can be increased/decreased by fellow players and automatically by the system via rejection of party invites, guild invites and repeating the same phrase over and over.

For events, though there is a lack of GM usage (Skot doesn't give himself GM powers), it allows the userbase to become creative with their events. MouRO has had a wide variety of events in its history: player-run "style" contests for characters with a prize of several million zeny at stake, a variant of "Where's Waldo?" to find a certain merchant in the world of RO to recieve a reward, server-wide parties, monster invasion parties and much more.

The community is also extremely friendly. New players need not be shy, as the regulars are always willing to give you a hand (answering questions, giving you free stuff, et cetera). Considering the nature of the server and how challenging monsters can be in the field, MouRO fosters the ideal of staying close knit in order to defeat the challenging enemies -- otherwise, what will happen if your High Priest hates you and you're on the verge of death?

Of course, despite the community there is a distinct lack of interest in WoE. It is most likely a combination of the emphasis on PvM/PvE, the nerfing of treasure castle drops, and the low population. However, the balancing of classes improves the WoE experience. With the alteration of skills, a 9999 damage cap, and cards that have been changed to balance them out (though they are still available in the mall), any class can beat any class when built to certain specifications -- don't be surprised when that tanking High Priest suddenly pulls a Houdini on you and kills you. If you're into PvP and large scale WoE invasions, then MouRO is perhaps not for you -- unless you like fighting the same people every day. 

Afterword

All in all, Mou is an interesting server that has kept me hooked, kept a loyal player base for the entirety of its existence (even if they aren't active anymore in-game), and is different every day -- in many ways of course. But now we come to the question of MouRO: is it a casual experience? Well you can sit around in the main town and talk about life with anyone, there's no rush at all to become level 150/140 because there isn't a ranking system for people's e-peen, and when you leave and come back you're guaranteed to come back to the same, homely Mou. Perhaps casual experience isn't the right phrase for Mou, but rather a lasting experience.
« Last Edit: Apr 07, 2009, 05:00 PM by MarioSoldier »

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Offline Dew

Re: MouRO
« Reply #1 on: Apr 08, 2009, 10:05 AM »
 ;D Actually finished it.

Bravo