Unparalleled visuals, music, and customization. Easy, and hard to let go as it oozes uniqueness from every pore.

User Rating: 9.5 | Sword of the New World: Granado Espada PC
Sword of the New World: Granado Espada (simply referred to GE from this moment onward) is a Korean based MMORPG. It puts itself somewhere in-between the Baroque period and Insanity, in which assuming that our ancestors centuries ago could launch fireballs from their hands and turn invisible all the while rapidly firing flintlock muskets faster then you can softly mention to them the fact they are breaking the laws of physics.

That being said, the setting is the pinnacle of gaming technology and covers unforeseen ground not visualized by the constant hammering of the Space Marine forces or the coalition of Woodland Elves. Set in a pseudo piracy with a hint of medieval and the harsh tang of Victorian world, GE plants you in a world riddled in political wars and dragons without stopping to throw in half a billion skeletons, dinosaurs and all kinds of generic giant insects to let you know if this is what really went on in the new world we wouldn't actually be here as all our ancestors would have been too busy grinding up character levels and player-killing their rivals to colonize the western world. While pulling out every corner of the elements and stuffing them within a 10 minute walk of each other, GE brings back a few friends we haven't seen in a few years like beautiful deserted temple surrounded by waterfalls and lush foliage and other such marvels that are far too beautiful to actually exist in the real world and constantly makes me wonder why it's possible to make something so historically accurate yet simply beautiful in a fictional video game world yet nothing like this could have possibly been seen on this planet during any real time. The Character Models and designs are simply amazing and the amount of charm and detail the characters pump out at you is only brought on more by how much you want to blast the tailor in the face each time he says something is simply fabulous while wearing fluffy pink clothes.

The beautiful scenery is only brought closer to you by the usually ear pleasing music. With that being said if you aren't a fan of any amount of techno, trance, or classical music you're much better off playing with your dwarven rogue while blasting Black Sabbath in the background and pretending the game is more hardcore then it actually could ever be. With that out of the way, the music fits the game perfectly and only complimenting the visuals as they walk hand in hand to meet up with their best of friends: Game play.

Immediately GE decides to make sure you know it's different by letting you create three different characters to control all at the same time, each one playing completely differently. You start off with five classes to mold into your new family such as the Flintlock wielding Musketeer who for some reason can't use swords, the Fighter who uses a large amount of things that stab, block, and shoot in frightenly interesting ways, and the generic Healer spiced with knives or spell casters that either turn invisible and call thunderstorms to envelope you in searing hot magma. Before you have a chance to cry out foul for small class selections one of the starting NPCs slaps you across the face and gives you a card for a new character to create being a hybrid gunslinger fighter with thick armor, and it comes to your attention that almost every non-player shop owner you can meet can be recruited on your team and serves a special purpose whether it be building cannons, firing cannons, or being a chef that launches fireballs and sword slashes or in other words being everything humanly possible that has become known as awesome. There are over 50 unique player characters to choose from and each one has a different specialty or use combining with the fact you can have up to three characters controlled at once and providing you the option to create any team to fight in your own unique style of killing lots of people or killing lots of people in fun and interestingly new ways.

GE spends no time in letting you know it's a MMORPG with an insane amount of skeleton dragon bug killing and any other time obtaining the tools necessary to kill even more skeleton bug dragons faster. One of the early missions treats you to something GE hides in it's closet and only lets it's true best friends see: mission maps. These modes usually revolve around defend variable spots or variable towers for variable amounts of time but are surprisingly fun in letting you fight for your life surviving against increasingly harder waves of enemies much like something seen out of custom games found on Starcraft or Warcraft and are a nice way to break away from killing two hundred dragon bug skeletons.

The max character level is 120, one through one hundred being simple while everything past that being called Veteran or even further, Expert. While the numeric levels provide you with changes to health or attack power, Veteran and Expert levels grant you a stat point to further increase your characters abilities. While character stat points are low, it keeps it simple and means that one point into strength gives you roughly a ten percent higher focus on dealing copious amounts of pain. There are two levels your character expands on one being your base level while the other is your stance level granting you stat bonuses and stronger skills depending on what stance you are in and caps out at level twenty-five. The jump from 100 to Veteran is going from an EXP bar of 100% to 0.0000%, each kill usually giving you .0002% and raising the chances you put your keyboard through a wall by 99.9999%. While Veteran is only seen as one level, every ten percent is one level in numeric status which doesn't yield anything but you getting less experience from monsters and doesn't pay off at all until the leap to Expert. The game is a copious grind but this doesn't upset the fact that this is what the game was made for and if you don't like it you might a well not be playing MMORPGs in the first place. GE wears it's MMORPG badge proudly and doesn't let anyone else bully it around the school yard for doing what the genre tries so hard to sugar coat and feed you in a different format whether it's clicking on goblins to die or clicking on rocks to mine. However if the grind ever gets too horrible you're liable to set your family in a field and press the space bar letting them kill everything they see but eliminating your options to use skills or pick up items that drop and completely level up slowly while not playing the game. Many shun this however I welcome it for unlike most other gamers I actually have things I want to do in life and come back to kill people later. This is only helped by the fact that almost 95% of the high end gear is completely buy able from other players and the fact that you aren't completely forced to raid unless you are a perfectionist.

Raiding is one of the highlights of the game, although it can be a hindrance to the typical fully PVE player. While there is one non-baron server free from player-killing, those who play on Baron servers must not only make it inside the warp gate in the 5 minute window during set time points each day, but then will have to fight other players to control the area and kill the boss itself. These usually take less then an hour to complete, most of the time being the 30 minute waiting point before the boss will spawn giving each squad a chance to fight and control the area which can be summarized as boring if there is no other clan to fight and you're into that sort of thing.

For those not interested in killing woodland creatures there's a large amount of other players to kill and douche baggery to be done. After family level six or roughly when all your characters are level fifty, you're open to kill or be killed by any other family. This system known as Baron allows you to kill other players every time you want while turning you into a giant red target for the entire time you aren't killing monsters to work off the points you gained killing other players. Low level barons will just randomly drop one item from their bag while higher level barons will drop multiple equipped items on death. There are also large scale wars between clans of opposing political factions to capture colonies on a specific day of the week I'm always working on with each colony giving a small percent higher health which stacks amazingly in larger clans making them become unfair dicks about killing you constantly when they have twice your health for just happening to be in the club.

In everything if you're looking for something completely different besides the setting you kill mythical creatures on Granado Espada offers large scale player against player wars, raids, player killing, and just about every other thing other major MMORPGs have without all the fluff of mining for ore or knitting sweaters. While specific character customization is low or at least at the start, the game makes up for it with insane amounts of ways to be killing people and ultimately sticking to what MMORPGs should do best.