Three Kingdoms Brawler
Three Kingdoms Brawler Overview
Three Kingdoms Brawler is an action MMORPG set in ancient China. The game has bright 2D graphics and the side- scrolling gameplay is similar to classic console RPGs of the past. Three Kingdoms Brawler plays a lot like Dungeon Fighter Online, but rather than a generic fantasy world, its based on lore that should be familiar to most gamers by now. There are plenty of quests available to speed up gameplay, but the best way to progress through this heavily instanced MMORPG is with a group of friends. Besides co-op, there’s also a PvP arena that allows players to test out their skills against one another.
Azure Dragon – Warrior class that uses short-range weapons.
White Tiger - Fighter class that uses fist weapons.
Phoenix - Assassin class that can wield throwing weapons.
* More classes in development
Three Kingdoms Brawler Screenshots
Three Kingdoms Brawler Featured Video
Three Kingdoms Brawler Review
Three Kingdoms Brawler, published by The9 Interactive, might seem to hold a bit of familiarity to you, and you couldn`t be blamed for it. This is because Three Kingdoms Brawler, released in early 2011, is very similar to what you might already know as Dungeon Fighter Online. While the setting and color palette is essentially different, the gameplay is very, very similar. Is that a bad thing? Considering World of Warcraft has been imitated countless times, it’s a trend that gives credit to the working concepts found in gaming, and Three Kingdoms Brawler might just be another example of that.
Brave New World
To start off, the game isn’t too bad looking. You’re brought up to a character creation screen comprising of 6 character class slots, 3 of which are unlocked, hinting at future content. Each class is fairly concise in its description, and their roles are thus far fairly explanatory – the White Tiger is a fist-fighting brawler tank, the Azure Dragon is the up-close damage class while the Phoenix is the ranged damage dealer. And that’s it – the character creator is unfortunately devoid of customization, and immediately throws you out into the world looking like everyone else. That’s not to say that the sprites are bad looking, because they’re not, but if you like diversity, you’ll quickly realize that this isn’t the game you’re looking for. Also, if you’ve missed the Chinese theme, it’ll leap at your face like an overenthusiastic face hugger as soon as you put a foot in the world.
They don`t mess around with the lore here – every NPC is voice acted, and they all speak mandarin. The lore has very clearly received some close attention, funneling you through a (though linear) variety
of environments and conflicts in Chinese history, ranging from a plethora of small battles to the Yellow Turban Rebellion. Unfortunately, most of what you’ll go through looks like it could have been adapted as a flash game rather than one requiring a gig-and-a-half client. The gameplay itself looks smooth however, and you`ll most likely enjoy the flashy effects for the moves you can pull off on the hordes of foes thrown your way.
And this leads to the gameplay – it’s not bad at all, and each class has some fairly good moves that might keep you entertained until the repetition sets in. For one, levels are linear and mostly vary in length rather than substance. You’re thrown hordes of mobs with the occasional mini-boss thrown in, until you reach the last boss, and the level is done. That’s pretty much it. The action happens entirely in these instances, and arena instances. You get your quests in town, which is also where you train your various skills and abilities. Due to the relatively low population of this game, groups are unfortunately relatively hard to find unless you’re willing to put a while into the research, which isn’t to say that it’s a bad idea as playing in a group is much more fun, but the time spent looking for one unfortunately just isn’t worth it. One place where the repetition gets broken is the boss battles, kept fairly challenging by the variety of techniques that they can use to counter your efforts, namely area attacks.
Outside the Box
The interface is alright, and there`s a good, steady variety of titles and achievements that can be unlocked throughout the game, which goes only a certain length to cover the lack of player customization
even during the game, as a good deal of outfits are simply restricted to paying customers(All two of them). Guilds can be joined at the click of a button, and normally PvP too, though at the writing of this review, PvP was not yet released. One thing that stands out is that the chat log is not actually within the game. Wait, what? Yes, your chat log is in a window that is literally outside your game window, in the event that you play in windowed mode, a strange feature that can be turned off with a bit of research, but that sort of beats the purpose of playing in windowed mode.
The progression, specifically the unlocking of new flashy abilities and collection of items is the core of the fun, and while the action is somewhat entertaining, the repetition tends to dull that party fairly quickly. The money shop is nothing out of the ordinary, granting items focused on making the progression faster, along with the occasional cloth/aesthetic item, though nothing that will most definitely give an incredibly unfair advantage.
Final Verdict: Fair
Overall, Three Kingdoms Brawler isn’t a bad game, but it’s nothing flashy either. It’ll most certainly appeal to gamers who enjoyed Dungeon Fighter Online if they can get over the feeling of awkward similarity, or fans of Chinese history looking for a quick beat em up. For everyone else, there are undoubtedly better free-to-play options out there to occupy your time. Still, if you don’t mind the large download and you’ve got an hour or two to spare, it costs nothing to try!
Three Kingdoms Brawler Links
Three Kingdoms Brawler Requirements
OS: Windows XP / Vista
CPU: Intel Pentium 4 3000 MHz / AMD Athlon 64 3000+
RAM: 1 GB
HDD: 2 GB Free
Graphics Card: GeForce 6600
OS: Windows XP / Vista / 7
CPU: Intel Pentium 4 3000 MHz / AMD Athlon 64 3000+ or better
RAM: 2 GB or more
HDD: 3 GB or more
Graphics Card: GeForce 6800 or better