Throne and Liberty combines vintage MMORPG play with a living world

Throne and Liberty looks like an old-school MMORPG on the surface, but Amazon Games and NCSoft has some unique hooks that make it worth trying out.

Amazon Games

Amazon Games continues to plant its footprint onto massive scale games. One of its latest efforts is a joint collaboration with Guild Wars 2 publisher NCSoft that will bring South Korean MMORPG Throne and Liberty to Western audiences. It brings along many of the expected elements of a standard MMORPG, but it also has a few interesting hooks that make it a little more interesting. Shacknews recently had a chance to try it out.

First and foremost, it should be noted that Throne and Liberty has a robust character creation system. NCSoft is allowing players to adjust nearly every detail of their faces, whether it be the various features of their eyes, makeup patterns, wrinkles, a wide array of facial expressions, and a lot more. One thing to note is that there's an option to import an actual photo and have AI use it to craft an in-game character's face. This can go a long way to craft a close-to-real-life depiction of a user's actual face. Even if the outcome for this particular game isn't an elegant one, it's an idea that players can expect to see more of in the future from other games. While it was tempting to blow the entire of the available demo time on the character creator, it was soon time to move along.

Using morph abilities in Throne and Liberty

Source: Amazon Games

Throne and Liberty's tutorial sets up the game's story in a standard manner. There was a lengthy cutscene helping establish the world of Solisium, the game's story, and segue into the user's character. The game plays out similarly to other NCSoft projects where players select targets and strike with a variety of skills. Unlike other MMORPGs, however, Throne and Liberty does not rely on classes. Play styles are determined by character weaponry, whether they be swords, daggers, bows, staffs, or any other variety of fantasy weapons. Whichever weapon players pick up can determine their effectiveness as DPS, tank, healer, or whatever other traditional MMO role one usually takes on. Players can select up to two weapons to add an even greater degree of versatility.

Throne and Liberty's other big hook is the ability to morph. There are standard morphs that allow users to travel the world faster, including distinct ones for land, sea, and air. Morphing can also act a quick means to escape enemy pursuit. However, the fun is in morphing into fallen beasts. At a later point in the story, players can pick up the ability to transform into certain bosses that they've defeated, adding some spice to late game encounters or even to PvP. Sadly, our demo time ran out before we were able to check out this specific aspect of the game.

Development on Throne and Liberty looks like it has a long way to go. Our particular build was plagued by some performance issues, which could be because the game had a massive world to try and render. There isn't a lot of wasted space in Throne and Liberty, as Solisium is quite expansive, with ample space for exploration. NCSoft is also going the extra mile with its world, occasionally changing things up. Throne and Liberty features day/night and weather cycles where events will change based on the time and conditions. This can change up the monsters that players encounter, as well as open up certain objectives and dungeons.

There's more to Throne and Liberty than we were able to gather in such a short sitting. We're interested to learn more once the time comes. This free-to-play MMORPG is coming soon to Western regions on PC, PlayStation 5, and Xbox Series X|S. Those interested in trying it out early can sign up for the upcoming tech test on the Throne and Liberty website.

This preview is based on a PC demo played on-site from the Summer Game Fest: Play Days event and may not be representative of the final product. Meals were provided by Summer Game Fest.

Senior Editor

Ozzie has been playing video games since picking up his first NES controller at age 5. He has been into games ever since, only briefly stepping away during his college years. But he was pulled back in after spending years in QA circles for both THQ and Activision, mostly spending time helping to push forward the Guitar Hero series at its peak. Ozzie has become a big fan of platformers, puzzle games, shooters, and RPGs, just to name a few genres, but he’s also a huge sucker for anything with a good, compelling narrative behind it. Because what are video games if you can't enjoy a good story with a fresh Cherry Coke?

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