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Is your favorite flavor vanilla? retRO review

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wasajin:
Hello, I'd like to share with you some of what I've experienced in 10 months playing casually on retRO, whilst participating in WoEs and interacting on Discord, all that from South America.

Disclaimer: I call it unbiased because I've found this server on my own, started playing there alone, made international friends and in spite of joining a competitive WoE guild, I don't engage in hostile interactions of any sort as a matter of principle (it's also a guild policy to prevent unnecessary frictions). Additionally I am constantly on the trade channels, discord and in-game, as well as joining levelling parties and never had any problem with anyone, player or staff member. So despite some people may tell, it's possible to enjoy the game alone or with other players from all-around the world without any quarrels.

TLDR: It's a genuine classic server with only up to 2-2 classes (for now), a few quality-of-life systems and updates, constant but timely episode releases and seasonal events, no donation or any sort of customization that impacts heavily in the original experience. It has a solid hosting service that guarantees low latency and availability even to countries in other continents. The staff is respectful and thoughtful, as most of the player-base, striving for a healthy community long-term. The only downside is a current small population, nevertheless there are half a dozen guilds active with around 10 players each. It promises to be a server to stay for a long time.

I've searched for a vanilla server for a long time and of course tried a few, but nothing seemed to last or keep me playing for a long time. I yearned for the experience I had in the official RO server that opened here in Brazil in 2004, I started playing a couple months after that as a kid and went on to my teens hopping on and off between "mostly" private servers, because at a young age I couldn't manage to pay the monthly fee of the subscription later required from the company that managed bRO for long periods. I even started a couple servers with friends as part of the staff and still have my old CDs mailed from Gravity to install the original game, but I digress...

Surely the pandemic made us all spent more time inside and maybe that had a part in the birth of many servers we have now online. All these years, I've always checked RMS for servers that fit my current needs and last year it was for a vanilla server, without any pay2win systems and privileges, minimum to no customization and last but not least, consistency. I wanted to invest time on characters that did not go to waste a couple years later because the staff decided they're not in the mood anymore.

That's when I discovered retRO, although hosted in Europe, the server makes use of an AWS technology to ascertain integrity and low latency connections, so my ping is the same as if the server was hosted in São Paulo, also the staff works to make their server as close as the original (euRO) as possible without donations, customizations and that sort of thing, especially pay2win mechanics, but the sealing deal for me was they don't intend to close the server, even if there are just 1 novice grinding porings at Prontera South. The GMs seem to share the same passion and desire some of us have in playing Ragnarök classic.

So, I registered, downloaded the client and started playing. The server has some cool features such as the master account system, that lets you have 3 gaming accounts linked together with a shared bank and zeny system allowing you to have autotraders up while levelling your main character. That's a big up imo, unlike other classic characteristics, by enabling auto-trading the community benefits towards a more live economy and contributes to the social aspect that makes RO what it originally was. In spite of that, you can only log-in with one game account at a time, therefore prohibiting the practice of multi-clienting which honestly defeats the whole purpose of interacting with other players by partying and joining guilds.
 
My first impressions were good, I had a couple minor obstacles when running the game, that were quickly fixed and in-game I saw movement on the chat channels (there are trade and party channels) and usually went by some other players exploring Rune-Midgard. I can safely say that 99% of the time I didn't have any connection issues and when I did, it was most likely from my ISP than it was from retRO's hosting service, so levelling was fun and I had freedom to experience the game without having to worry about technical details.

Fast-forwarding a couple months, I managed to make some friends and joined a guild although I'm a casual player, I log in daily and after a while I was interested in participating on WoEs, since it's just once a week for only 1 hour it's more than doable. The server had a design and system updates of it's website, database and game client that made navigation more easy and enabled a more wide ranking system along with other quality-of-life improvements. Content episodes are being released accordingly with euRO's timeline and the staff always implements cool seasonal events as well, there's no big rush and always something to do, if you have the motivation, I mean, it's a MMORPG.

The only thing that bothers me in retRO is it's current low population of around 20 active players and the same number of auto-traders, totalizing 40-50 online characters. Big guilds of more than 30 members left and went to other servers (sadly that had an impact on WoEs and the economy) likely because of unhealthy interactions between some of them and lack of patience, there was also a couple people in constant conflict with each other and even complaining that the staff didn't comply to their selfish demands from what I've seen...

If only those people focused more on enjoying the game and having FUN, we would have a MUCH better server for all. A low-rated server community needs time to improve, players willing to play on them must have that in mind, there's always new faces probing the landscape and if the people that gave up within a few weeks or a month had stick around we would have a server with a LOT more active players. Alas, there are at least 5 medium-sized (15-20 players) guilds operating right now, 3 of them engage in WoE as well and the others are focused only on PvM activities. I hope more people join and give this server a chance, a community will only be as good as the people it comprises of.

That's my two zeny,
Thanks for reading.

BaphometRag:
It is strange that you dont mention the staff protecting the guild that abused a big exp exploit. Thats why retro died. I cant recommend

sheik92:
Except GMs never protected Kirchen, his guild and the Majoruros exploit. Majos parties went on for a while, they changed the slave behaviour to not give any more exp as soon as they found out people were using majos their way to 99 by cheesing minos, making 12m exp/h.

This server does not condemn mobbing. Seals and Anolians can be mobbed to your heart's content. They changed the respawned slave reward to zero, simply; both in drops and experience. Honestly I'm tired of people s*** on the server because there's this rumor of protecting guilds. Show me proof of abuse. No guild leaders or guilds were/are favourite by the Game Masters.

You could say they were left unpunished. If there was something to punish to begin with. Majos exploit is technically an official behavior. Mi Gaos duplication is also gone for the same matter.

Quote from announcements in Discord:

[GM] Charly — 14/09/2021
@everyone
Good evening dear players,

today we come to you with an announcement that we know will cause anger and perhaps disapproval among you.

It is about the slave behaviour of mobs and mini bosses.
As you know, some time ago we have confirmed the behaviour of slave mobs through our Aegis test server as correct and intentional.

Now that some time has passed and we had time to watch the different partys and received feedback from many players. Regarding this issue, we have come to the conclusion to review this behaviour again.

Please note that we are aiming for the Aegis behaviour and all euRO settings with retRO. This is not always an advantage. We have now realised that this is the case with regular mobs and mini bosses and their slaves.
The reason for this announcement is without a doubt the Majoruros situation.
euRO which of course was also run on Aegis did not have the "problem" of empty maps due to the huge player masses. On retRO, however, entire maps can be pulled together without being disturbed by anyone.

We have come to the conclusion that we do not want this levelling method on retRO any longer. Therefore we will change this behaviour. Although we described this some weeks ago as intended.

Due to the new methods and numbers that our players have worked out, we unfortunately have no choice but to act.
Basically you can gather the entire map and trap them with an Ice Wall and heal the Majoruros back to full health after killing their slave mobs. From that point you don't have to gather mobs anymore, you simply kill the slaves and heal the Majoruros infinitely. On on a 1x Server in our current episode it must not be possible to reach way more than Bio3 EXP by just killing slave mobs.

We apologise in any form that we did not listen to the concerns of players that warned us about it and this has only now become clear to us.
This change will affect the organised guilds and groups that have specialised in this levelling method.


Before Majos, people complained about a 2x EXP event that was held for one week in March last year. bUt SkiLL cApPeD pLaYeD fRoM StArT sO tHey HaD aDvAnTage. So what, people that can organize parties decently have an advantage over the other guilds who don't? Yeah no s*** Sherlock. And this is going to happen on ANY server they go; because they've been playing this game for 20 years, and because they are good at it. Honestly, I just see grown up people running this server, and a bunch of 30 yo crybabies s*** on it for no reason.

wasajin:

--- Quote from: BaphometRag on Mar 25, 2022, 09:14 pm ---It is strange that you dont mention the staff protecting the guild that abused a big exp exploit. Thats why retro died. I cant recommend

--- End quote ---

Yea, I heard and read about this, but didn't linger much on the topic, because I saw it gained attention and the staff was on to it. I understand that it could make us feel frustrated, levelling alone or with little to no help is harder, but that's part of the fun if you really think about it. That's what I meant by focusing on having a good time instead of quarreling among each other. Just a short time after the staff made slave mobs only give rewards on their first wave, after that it's zero exp and zero loot, as sheik said. Additionally people have to understand that decisions towards something that involves a reasonable amount of individuals won't satisfy every and each one of them. I really don't think staff protected those players, the greatest evidence of it is that they pretty much got bored or something and left.

In the end, experienced hardcore players that have the time and manpower will take advantage of the system in some way. On the other hand, that's really old news by now, dwelling in the past will only hurt those that let it be their present and future. The strange thing, in my opinion, is letting it influence that much your experience with the game, times change. Everyone in my guild is having an awesome time, some people took breaks, some came back, we organize parties together and with other guilds and players. We aim to have fun and aspire to create new memories with the game that we love in a pleasant environment. That's what it's all about.

dahman:

--- Quote from: BaphometRag on Mar 25, 2022, 09:14 pm ---It is strange that you dont mention the staff protecting the guild that abused a big exp exploit. Thats why retro died. I cant recommend

--- End quote ---

we moved to another server, and found a way to make even more exp/h even more easy than on Majo because of the costum stuff there.
and you know what happends now?
nothing. because every guild could do it any time.
and even more because its nothing special but simple mechanics of RO.
maybe also because the community there doesnt qq as much.

also we didnt left because of the Majo thing, we left (or paused) because  of certain decitions that are 100% woe related.
but well, doesnt matter what i say here. youll just ignore it and everytime you read a new Retro thread, you get the "Majo WarFlashback"  /heh

to everyone that is searching for a small 1x that is kinda close to official , w/o much costums and is happy with a small scale woe community,  yea i can recommend retro for sure.

pro tip:
Join Renasci for some pvm activities, or PlayDead for woe.
FINA is also possible for woe and pvm stuff, but idk, their leader Skarpy is trying hard to become a male Xellie... some ppls like that, some dont.

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