Corrosive Games

Started by RoseTea, Jul 15, 2013, 05:50 PM

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RoseTea

I was recommended to try the Crush server on my Server Seeking thread, so why don't we just check it out?

The website looks like it's designed for something that isn't quite 800x600 but couldn't possibly be 1024x768 either.  I would love to see how big the gaps are on Fruit Pie's monitor.  It's a straightforward slate background with white for content.  Notably, there's no who's online, control panels, or information directly about the servers.

The wiki is largely an incomplete mess.  There's lots and lots of custom classes on Crush, but most of them don't have pages made, and those that do are either completely blank, or a list of skills with their descriptions.  Pages for Races and Quests give me database errors.  Possibly the funniest link is the New Player's Guide, which has "add stuff here.".

Installing this server, compared to 90% of other servers, is a complete and utter nightmare of a disaster zone.  There's no real installer, and the patcher doesn't work, so you install a 3-part RAR and the sclientinfo.xml to drag-and-drop into the kRO folder, then run not Corrosive Games, but "The Bosses Lair.exe".  I spent way more time than I ever should trying to get this done, and by the time I finished I had a client that couldn't connect to the server for some reason.  I ended up downloading a 2.2GB "complete" folder from somebody on the forums which ended up working fine.

To make your account, you make a forums account, then use that to instantly create your RO game account.  It uses the same username and password as the one on the forums.  Not necessarily a BAD system (and in fact I sort of like.  Register once, you're done), but sharing the same password seems like an easy security breach.   A minor niggling anectdote is only allowing certain domains to be used as your forum email.  The error message happily suggested a throw-away email site... which was also rejected, doubly-wasting my time.



By the way, hi XRay Client.  I don't miss you.  Go away.  Forever.

So let's get into the game.  Starting on Crush, you immediately begin being asked what God you want to follow.  Gods give you a skill or two and a passive ability.  I picked Mani, who gives me a free blue potion every so often and doubles their effectiveness.  There's another one for white potions, one that boosts your Def and Mdef by 10%, another for double drops, and Loki who is worthless (Perfect Dodge +10%, STR INT DEX -5%).  They all have norse names which is a nice touch of flavor, and the bonuses are really minor.

Next, you pick a profession, or sub-class, or something.  I was never very clear on that.  These are more or less a permanent "chance to drop something" card on your character forever.  Herbs, weapons, armors, accessories, so on.  A few other ones are straight-up bonuses to something that was never explained too clearly, and one even acts like Guts from Earthbound: a chance to survive a hit with 1 HP left.

You're given a Quest Book, a Job Change consumable, and something else I've forgotten that I don't think I ever used. After that, you're free to... something.  I found a Spore that asks if you've played Ragnarok Online before, and if you haven't, will dump you directly into the generic Novice Island. Cool.  Moving northward there's a few less useful NPCs before you finally get to the warper.



I only wish this was how the server actually began.

I have some disappointing news for you: The warper is strange and almost entirely limited.  You can only warp to so many towns, and I was told I couldn't warp there until I made progress in the storyline.  So off to Chapter 0 we go!

I didn't actually take screenshots of the Chapter, so I'll just explain it in text.

Chapter 0 has you plunked down in a swamp-like area.  There are tons and tons of immobile, nonaggressive plant mobs.  I could one-shot the weaker ones with a 6 damage attack, and the harder one took 4.  Scattered all over the area were NPCs that said nothing useful.  My goal was to apparently fight the boss of the area, but I had no idea where this boss was, if any of the NPCs were needed for this, or at all how to trigger the battle.



Now repeat this picture a thousand times.

So Fruit Pie and I wandered around aimlessly for HALF AN HOUR.  There was a second area we found with "harder" mobs that still did 1 damage to us, but as it turned out literally nothing was there at all!  It was just a place for mobs to exist, and The End.  It was later when we went back to the first area that we found the warp to the boss.  As in, it was a warp that took us to a waiting room, where we queued up to fight the boss.  The boss was an impotent version of Phreeoni.

So half an hour of what was effectively a pixel-hunt in extreme-density maps, each featuring two different mobs.  Fun.



Thanks, Purple Text.  Uh, can we get a ride, or...?

We walked back to town, becuse we didn't see any way for us to teleport back.  I hadn't got my BDA, which means the guards wouldn't accept me back into town.  There was no way for me to get a BDA without being in town.  If I didn't have a BWing, I would have been permanently stuck.  As it turns out, this is a known problem.  The ultimate insult to it all is that I STILL don't know how to do anything with a BDA anyway.  You can supposedly level it up and gain bonuses to Atk, ASPD, Hit, Flee and such, but I couldn't figure it out.

After deciding that Chapter 0 was not fun at all, we decided to screw the quest line and just play RO typically.  We'd have to walk everywhere, but that's no big deal.  There was only one problem.



Pictured: Our worst nightmare.

Yes.  There were no mobs.  We HAD to go into the chapter areas if we wanted to fight anything.  Doing the chapters was the only way to grind.  Trying to play a Summoner, there were two incredibly messed up problems with this: I started only getting double-digit experience (in a party!  Single digit alone) because of a "level difference" or something, so it was effectively impossible for me to get experience in the two chapters I had unlocked.  The second was I needed money, because the basic summoning talisman I needed was 100k zeny.

So we went into Chapter 1, since we were stuck.  Chapter 1 starts you off in a desert.  You wander around a mob-dense desert with no real rhyme or reason as to what mobs are there, until you find a literal desert.  I need to figure out the dimensions for this thing, because it had to have been 1000x1000 squares of gently sloping desert texture.  Here, we had to find the exit to yet another map, which was Literally The Assassin's Guild.



A compelling, original questline.

I died, and being both weak as hell and unable to progress I decided to screw that and check out the other features.  A town called Ostgate was on the warper, so I went there.  It led me to a Guardian Gav which I think is the options NPC.  A boat took me to the city proper, which was...


Cue crickets chirping.

Well, it actually didn't look bad at all.  It would make a nice hub city, add a few small quests sprinkled about it so people will explore the whole thing, you could make it somewhat interesting even if its overall map shape reminds me of Aldebaran.  The problem was there was NOTHING HERE.  No other NPCs populated the map.  I did manage to find a warp somewhere in there, which led me to a hell-like place where I was one-shot by a Baphomet Jr named critter that actually used the Hellion Revenant sprite.  I truly do not understand the purpose of this place.

By the way, I finally did manage to get my summon.  It really did not help matters.  If I had known the exact skill tree path to get it, I'd have more than one job level and thus it'd have a little more oomph behind it.  To summon a creature, you need the talisman to summon it and to chant a phrase in main chat (like invoking Super Novice Fury).  This is extremely obnoxious, but at least the talisman isn't used up.

Fruit Pie gave up, but later in the night I decided to find out where all those AFK people are hanging out.  I found one in the DB Room, doing...



...flash-farming Angelings?  What the hell?  Don't worry, we'll get an answer to this mystery when I plunge into Incognito.  For now, though, let's flash forward into time when I finally encountered another person and explained my problems to them.  Their answer was...


...Giving me a bunch of stuff that'd make a SHR player blush.  I gained 66 base levels and 59 job levels off the "gain 100,000,000 exp" tomes they gave me, along with tons of other items and 800m zeny.  This made the chapter go from tedious to trivially tedious.  As it turns out, there were at least 3 more maps to go through after Literally the Assassin's Guild, so it'd have taken our (properly?) levelled behinds still at least half an hour to finish it.  I have no idea how you're supposed to break into this server without someone hanging you tons of ridiculous stuff at the get-to like this.

There's actually higher level summoning talismans, by the way.  You have to go through the level 1 phrase, then 2, then 3 before finishing.  Fun.



Ultimately, all the new jobs seem interesting to play around with, but the server itself really, really, REALLY does not want you doing anything aside from its very boring quest chapters.  Each map in the quest area is a homogenous mass of densely-populated mobs that's a slog to fight through (it doesn't help they're trivally weak individually) while stumbling around to find the warp portal you're given no directions or instructions about.  If there were the custom jobs in a regular mid-rate RO server it'd have at least been interesting and quick to try them all out.  As-is, it's Chapters or bust, and I can't even zip through levels via Payon Cave to talk about the rest in more detail.




On Incognito, I began my playtime with this picture, which summarizes two points:



The BDA's back, but instead of being "how do I use this thing", it turns out it's just straight up 100% useless here.  At least it doesn't weigh anything.  Secondly, peep that XP per mob: this is a 1x/1x/something server.  It's the weekend, though, so the rates are doubled (Or so claims @rates.  I don't know how that 27 for job happened).  Joy.  Also, there's no job changers, no warpers, and basically no custom NPCs except the ones to give you the custom jobs.  This is effectively eAthena launched straight out of the box.

 

This server also has a terrible deluge of AFK players.  Why are they all there, I wonder.  And hold on a second, one of them won a card!  What a mystery.

I decided here to try the custom job Valkyrie.  The job quest for Valkyrie was to die 10 times.  So off to Culverts I went to die 10 times.  I know Gravity didn't make the best job quests, but at least I didn't have to do this for them.



You would think Valkyries want no part of general incompetence, but they only accept people who have gotten their dumb donkey killed at least 10 times.

Now that I'm a Valkyrie, I went straight back to Culverts to level, upon which I realized... I'm getting even less Experience than ever before.  That's right, you get only 25% REGULAR EXPERIENCE as a custom class.  This means, even factoring in the double experience weekend, I'm playing a 0.5/0.5 server.


Look at that experieAAAAAH WHAT'S WRONG WITH YOUR HEAD MA'AM IT IS TWO FEET OFF OF YOUR NECK

I'm sorry to say that I did not even get one job level for Valkyrie, so I have no idea what they play like.  But I got answers for you!


Imperatix Mundi happily told me about all the AFK players and how one gained a card: They used the @logout command and are somehow farming mobs that attack them afterwards.  It is, indeed, "some form of a trick", and explains what was going on with both the Mi Gao card and the guy in the DB room.  They are Not-Technically-Botting.  After this point, Mundi and I went to Crush together, which is when all that "sweet loot" things and onward happened.

The custom jobs were really quite promising, but both servers blocked my attempts at trying their content in their own ways.  Crush by forcing me into their badly-designed quest line, and Incognito by being a 1/1/n with no warpers or other quality-of-life NPCs.  Both servers suffer from players whose primary strategy for playing the game involves not actually playing it, with a @logout trick the admin both approves and accepts doing, but Mundi theorized was in just to give the illusion that there was a playercount at all.

This was, without a doubt, the most frustrating experience I've ever had in Ragnarok Online.  I can't fault them for the amount of work that no-doubt went into the custom classes, but I can't actually play them.  That, in my opinion, is the biggest failing of Corrosive, even more than the unfun "Chapters" or massive experience nerfs.  It just wasn't fun, and based off using @logout, I think the other players somewhat agree.

Kiyoshiro

Interesting. Now I see how bad a heavily-customized server can be.

That 3rd screenshot gave me nostalgia though. Now I wanna go cry somewhere :<

MiyumiChan

OMG that 3rd picture and those mobs... Why did It have to shut down  /sob

Fruit Pie~

What do you guys mean "shut down", it's literally there!

http://corrosivegames.net/

See? Right there! Unless this was all copied from another server, in which case wow.

I do have the second part of sorts of this review (it involves getting locked in an epic one hour stalemate against GTB, which finally pushed me over the edge), but it's one of those servers I try not to write bad reviews of just because custom servers are so damn rare. The list basically boils down to this one and MouRO (which is another terrible beast entirely).

Kiyoshiro

#4
Quote from: Fruit Pie~ on Jul 17, 2013, 04:37 PM
What do you guys mean "shut down", it's literally there!

http://corrosivegames.net/

See? Right there! Unless this was all copied from another server, in which case wow.


Well, the mob sprites in that 3rd screenshot are from another MMO entirely. They're from Trickster Online which shut down in North America several months ago. Sorry for being unclear about that :x

ledah4

As a 4-year player at CG, let me clear up some things.

Our wiki isn't open for editing because we were targeted with spam bots for 2 years, so our players can't do much. A lot of guides have now been made available on the forums.

Leveling is difficult because we are a party-based server; you gain a lot more experience by being in a party. Leveling difficulties are also listed next to class names in the high rate.

The AFK players utilize tank/reflect gear in order to kill while standing idle. I personally try to discourage this and go through and PK AFKers semi-regularly.

The monster images are not original sprites because we have ONE gamemaster who does all the work himself. He is not a spriter, and nevertheless, he works hard enough keeping us entertained with new content that sprites can be pretty low on his to-do list.

RoseTea

Quote from: Kiyoshiro on Jul 17, 2013, 06:57 PM
Well, the mob sprites in that 3rd screenshot are from another MMO entirely. They're from Trickster Online which shut down in North America several months ago. Sorry for being unclear about that :x
I had absolutely no idea those sprites were taken from another game entirely.  I find myself at a loss for words (maybe the first time ever this has hapened?).

Quote from: ledah4 on Jul 17, 2013, 08:59 PMLeveling is difficult because we are a party-based server
This is perhaps the worst mentality possible to have when developing a server, especially with the level of "population" I saw at Corrosive.  A server should never be "based" on a particular style of play.  Here's the message Corrosive Games gives to curious RO players: if you're not interested in partying, we don't want you and will make your time miserable.

Tom~

Quote from: RoseTea on Jul 24, 2013, 06:36 AM
I had absolutely no idea those sprites were taken from another game entirely.  I find myself at a loss for words (maybe the first time ever this has hapened?).

You shouldn't really worry about that. The sprites were released for free by some guy on *athena, and they have been used on plenty of servers (atleast servers I've played, since I like to play weird and not populated servers, like CG). They were from Trickster Online, but just like the pokemon sprites you found in PokemonRO, they were taken from that game.

Anyway, I played CG for a while a loooooong time ago, and although I didn't have such a hard time on that server (I found the low XP gain entertaining while I was low lvl and on the first mission), it did bother me that I pretty much HAD to party with somebody to level up after a while. I played a Berserker and liked the class a lot, but once I was lvl... 40? 50? (I honestly can't remember), I asked around in town, and to my surprise, someone wasn't afk! I partied with him and the increase in XP gain was absurd. I got to lvl 300 or something like that in no time. Back then the max lvl was 500...

The guy invited me to join a guild (faction?), and I participated of one raid with another character (a water mage?). I remember we got in an aircraft (that apparently belonged to my guild), and got to a different version of Alberta which was full of really strong mobs, and I'm pretty sure I ended up maxing my character there.

The day after that, and my last day in CG, my guild was nowhere to be seen. I made another character (summoner? necromancer?), was annoyed by the low XP gains, and quit because the server I was playing at the time was pretty customized too and actually had people.

But whatever. CG would be pretty fun to play if it had more ACTIVE players, as it usually happens with servers that are so customized. /sigh

And so you killed yourself,
but you killed everyone else around you too.