New MMORPGs of 2010

Since it is almost the end of the year it’s a good time to take a look at the new MMORPGs that came out this year. The vast majority of games coming out were actually free to play (f2p) games using a cash shop instead of the usual monthly payments of pay to play (p2p) games. This year also marked a continuing trend of games moving from p2p to f2p following the success of Dungeons and Dragons Online last year. Also, the end of the year features an expansion from the biggest MMORPG, WoW. While it doesn’t have as many of the big names that 2009 had and 2011 will possibly have, it was still a pretty good year for MMORPGs.
 PvP including arenas, castle sieges, and realm vs. realm (up to 1000 vs. 1000)
 Extensive pet system
 Only six gender-locked classes
 Limited character customization
 Aika, published by gPotato, offers some of the best PvP of any MMORPG. While it only has 6 classes that are gender-locked, this also helps them to work these classes to balance them in PvP. Aika doesn’t offer much else unique besides the PvP but if you are into heavy PvP which includes realm vs. realm of up to 1000 vs. 1000, it might be worth taking a look at this game. 
 Expansive World
 Astral ship PvP combat
 Takes WoW clone to a whole new level
 Nothing really new or unique
 Allods Online is another game published by gPotato. While Allods doesn’t really add anything new to the genre, it polishes and refines everything to make a fairly good f2p game. However, it is very hard to not notice how similar it is to World of Warcraft. Starting right at character customization, it looks and feels almost like playing WoW with a few differences here and there. 
 Battle of the Immortals
 Unique Soul Gear armor system with beautiful graphics
 Auto-navigation system makes questing easier
 Only 5 classes and limited character customization
 Quests are fairly boring and repetitive
 Battle of the Immortals, published by Perfect World Entertainment, is also pretty deep in their PvP. The main feature of BoI is their Soul Gear armor system. Not only is there a good amount of customization features for your armor, your armor has movable parts that can separate and adjust adding to the cool factor. This game does have a good amount of grinding which is typical of Asian MMOs, but also offers auto-navigation on quests and a botting system. 
 Dynasty Warriors Online
 Familiar hack and slash action of the Dynasty Warriors series
 20+ types of weapons available
 Fighting and quests can be very repetitive
 Controls hard to adjust to
 Dynasty Warriors Online, published by Aeria Games, offers fans of the Dynasty Warriors series their first MMORPG. This game has the familiar hack and slash action of the series. The controls though don’t translate to well to the PC and it can take some time to get used to. The graphics and quest system aren’t very good, and is behind the newer MMORPGs. It still is pretty fun to go 1 vs. 1000 against a massive army every once in a while though.
 Everquest 2
 Lots of variety in the quests and content
 Great character customization in looks, skills, crafting
 Going f2p places restrictions on races, classes, bag space, etc.
 Need to pay to unlock max level
 Everquest 2 was originally published in 2004 by Sony Online Entertainment as a p2p game. In 2010, they added a new free to play option with their own servers. This was different than other pay games that went f2p because they still have p2p servers. Everquest 2 has a great amount of customization such as 24 classes but much of this is limited in free version. It does have a massive world that is mostly free for players to explore. 
 Final Fantasy XIV
 Gorgeous graphics
 Can level up multiple weapons and skills on the same character
 Needs a really good computer to play without lag
 Quests and grinding is repetitive and boring
 Final Fantasy XIV is the sequel to Final Fantasy XI, both published by Square Enix. This game comes with probably the best graphics of any game on this list, and maybe the best graphics of any MMORPG to date. This does come with a cost though as only high end PCs will be able to play at the highest settings with no lag. FFXIV does offer the ability to change classes by changing weapons as well as learning skills that can be used by any class, creating less need on alts and allowing the player to play different types of classes without changing characters. The quest system is average and pretty boring, adding nothing that makes it interesting. This is also still a p2p game.
 Lord of the Rings
 Great storyline and lore from the books/movies
 Interactive combat system with combos
 Weak PvP besides Monster Play, which requires VIP account
 Requires cash shop or heavy grinding to progress past a certain point
 Lord of the Rings Online by Turbine follows their popular Dungeons and Dragons Online in making the switch to f2p. LOTRO features one of the best storylines in an MMORPG and offers decent graphics to boot. The world is huge, and players can go from Bree to the Shire and other places from the books. LOTRO doesn’t offer much in terms of PvP, and Monster Play which can be fun is VIP (monthly paying account) only. The PvE content and gameplay though beat most if not all MMORPGs available.
 Star Trek Online
 Offers both space and ground battles
 Customize your very own ship
 Complicated itemization is hard to understand
 Very unpolished when released, still a work in progress
 Star Trek Online, published by Cryptic Studios, offers trekkies their own MMORPG. This game mostly focuses on space combat though there are ground missions as well. Players can customize their own spaceship and choose to be either the Federation or Klingon. Unfortunately, Star Trek Online seemed to be rushed and unpolished when released though recent updates have made the game much more playable. It might be worth taking another look at now that it has been updated. Currently Star Trek Online is p2p. 
 Action packed combat and ability to use objects in environment
 Beautiful non-cartoony graphics
 Limited character options (only 3)
 Small, mostly instanced world
 Vindictus, published by Nexon, is another action packed hack and slash version of an MMORPG. The combat is fun and requires more control than the usual autoattack. The graphics are pretty good and Vindictus a darker and more evil look to the game than other MMORPGs. Right now Vindictus suffers from limited character options and a small world with less quests than other MMORPGs, though this will eventually be remedied with the release of more classes and areas in the future.
 World of Warcraft: Cataclysm
 Two new races: Goblins and Worgen
 Level increase to 85
 Still the same World of Warcraft
 Features like Path of the Titans and Guild Talents were scrapped
 World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, created by Blizzard, is an expansion and not a new game, but is still worth noting because of the massive amount of people that will purchase it. In this expansion, WoW is not only adding more content like battlegrounds and raiding for the older players, but is revamping the leveling as well as adding new races and race-class combos for newer players. WoW is still the king of MMORPGs and this expansion shows that Blizzard isn’t letting up. This expansion was released Dec. 7th and WoW is of course still p2p.

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