Reviews

Pocket Legends Review

A free, full 3D, MMORPG for your iDevices. How does it stack up?

Checkout my updated impressions after the massive 1.3 update!

Many games have been advertised as being “MMOs” on the App Store, but pretty much all of them don’t offer a “true” MMO experience. That is, synchronous multiplayer with a large number of other users via the internet. Asynchronous methods of multiplayer have been used, but don’t quite satisfy the interaction that a real MMO requires. Luckily, with Pocket Legends, the days of asynchronous multiplayer and fake MMOs can take the back seat, the MMORPG is here!

Pocket Legends is a true MMORPG on the iDevices, and is surprisingly polished for being the very first of it’s kind on the platforms. I’ll say straight up that there is a lot about Pocket Legends that needs to be tweaked, added, or refined, but that doesn’t stop it from being a fun game that my sister and I sunk about 3-4 hours into today! I should mention that my sister, while an avid gamer, was never a fan of RPG games, and she had a great time zapping fools with lightning as an Enchantress. I made sure she learned the “heal” spell ASAP. ;)

Pocket Legends brings all the requirements of an RPG to the table. There are three classes; warrior, archer, and enchantress. Once you create your character, which is sadly quite lacking, and give them a name, you get dropped into

"Let my people, goooooooo..."

"Let my people, goooooooo..."

the game hub, which is a town (or rather, a “towne”). You are immediately aware that you are in an MMORPG by the folks spamming various emotes and chatting away in large groups. You can even shake your phone to “/wave”. Neat. There aren’t many emotes when you first start, but you can buy extra emote packs in-game for 99 cents.

Quests are instance-based, meaning that, rather than traveling from one area to another in-game, you have to create or join maps from a list. Considering the fast nature of mobile gaming, this isn’t a huge deal, as traveling across expansive worlds would have been a bit tedious. You can create private instances that are password protected, or just join a random mission to help out. For the price of nothing, the game comes with quite a long quest that will see you leveling to around 10-12 before the end of it. At the end of every quest, there is a bonus dungeon for looting and gaining gold.

The gameplay is very standard for MMORPGs, with a maximum of 4 spells available at a time, and health and mana that slowly recharges over time. You tap the attack button to automatically lock onto an enemy, and will auto attack until they are defeated. Oddly, I found that the auto-target system enjoyed targeting treasure chests, despite a plethora of enemies nearby. This was lame, but not a huge deal. As with most RPG games, there are plenty of different spells,

Spell effects are quite cool considering the platform.

Spell effects are quite cool considering the platform.

appropriate to the different classes. Some are AOE spells, others can buff your party, and some are for brutal attacking. You gain these automatically as you level up, but can choose which ones to spend points on as you gain them.

While there are no guilds yet, there is a friend system the is functional, but not as robust as I would like. At the moment, there is no way to invite friends into your instance. Instead, they have to go to their friends list and join you manually. Also, you aren’t notified when friends come online, so there’s no grabbing someone when they jump in to help out with a tough boss. You just have to hope they join yours. Push notifications also would have been welcome in this respect, as so many other games these days make use of them.

While I can’t vouch for the iPad version, the game looks great on my 3G iPhone, with surprisingly good effects for spells. The art style is very similar to World of Warcraft, with a 3D cartoony feel. The frame rate certainly takes a hit with 5 players and many enemies on the screen, but most of the scenarios were able to easily be handled with minimal effect

Tap attack to automatically line up a target.

Tap attack to automatically line up a target.

on gameplay. I like that equipment and weapons actually show up on your avatar as you equip them. The sound isn’t amazing, but works well. I especially appreciated the funny dialogue/voices that come from the main dungeon bosses.

One of my biggest issues with the game is the lack of a real driving story line. It would be cool if, as you progressed through quests, you arrived at different towns of the game to chat with other players at your level. At the moment, everyone is tossed into the one town, and it’s kind of a mess. Or perhaps if there was a world map to give some perspective as to where you are going or progressing in the game. Even a choice to which quest you’re going to take at your level would be great. At the moment, there isn’t a main quest with optional side quests, there are just various dungeon packs that progress what little story there is from one instance to another. Understandably, Pocket Legends was designed to be played in short bursts of time, but I feel this has somewhat lessened the desire to keep returning to the game to prepare for the next epic quest. That doesn’t make the game bad by any means, as it’s still a lot of fun to

Bigger baddies require more teamwork to defeat.

Bigger baddies require more teamwork to defeat.

play. I’m just wondering how long that will last for really active players who level up quickly. The good news is, dungeons and quests remain purchased for your account, not just your character, so you can start a new character without paying for everything again.

Pocket Legends is a true MMORPG that is light on story, but strong on gameplay and  fast instance-based quests. While some of the later dungeons can take quite some time with a 2-3 players, with a full party of 5, they’re generally not too tough to complete in 15-20 minutes. It has all the necessary requirements of an MMO game, but still has far to go before it reaches the same bar as some of the more popular RPG games out there.

Wait a minute, what am I saying!? This is a freaking full-on mobile MMORPG! It’s a lot of fun to play, especially with friends; and to me, that’s more important than having every feature under the sun. If you’re new to RPGs, or have friends that play games like WoW and are wondering what the big deal is, definitely give Pocket Legends a try. If you are an experienced RPG player, you won’t be disappointed. Just keep in mind that, as with all MMORPGs, the game is constantly growing and evolving.

eds-choice
4-stars

Pocket Legends for the iPhone – FREE
Pocket Legends for the iPad – FREE

Here’s a list of some suggestions for additions to later builds of Pocket Legends. I’m adding this because this is a game I plan on playing for some time, and I would love to see it fleshed out more as the months progress.

- Player to player trading. What’s the point of collecting great loot that’s not in your class unless you can give it to friends?
- More character customization. What if I want to be a warrior, but would rather be a different animal than a bear?
- Better friend system. Notifications when friends come online, and the ability to invite them to your current instance.
- Guilds! And perhaps a private place for your guild to gather.
- Use a world map to organize quests, rather than one big list.
- Different world hubs that are unlocked as you progress so you can easily link up with others at your level.

Feel free to chime in in the comments!

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  • Matt Allen

    I think your nailed the review…

    With a little tweaks this could easily be the only game on my iPod. I belive the fate of this game lies in future uptades, as currently there is little to do once you reach lvl 25 and can no longer gain xp.

  • legend.inc

    Great game, but needs some minor improvements like you said… anyway if you haven’t got this yet go get it !!! its free !!

  • Hawthor

    You do get a notification when friends are online. Next to your name while you’re playing a blue/green person icon pops up (similar to the MSN messenger icons), and if you’re on the front page you’ll also see that icon next to the Buy button (as it takes you to the inventory/store/friends page). That said, the friends/guild aspect does need work (and bug-fixes) but according to the developer they are working on it.

  • http://www.pyrosmile.org Matt Dunn, USA

    Right, but if you have a bunch of friends, that icon is pretty much always there, and you have to constantly check to see if a specific person is online. It would be better to receive the notification in the chat box at the top or something. Better yet, being able to choose who you want to be notified about would be great.

  • Loser Chris

    Does the Join even work with the friends menu? Every time I tried it I was just taken to the list of active games. I thought maybe my friend was in the highlighted game I was placed on, but that was not the case.

  • AnotherTim

    I’ve got a legend in my pocket.

    (It’s my weenis.)

  • legend.inc

    hmm.. why is it in your pocket?

  • Pocket Legend’s user name: Laquint

    Games great im lvl 12 so far and haven’t got any problems but..If you want the most gangster weapons it will cost you platnium which you can buy cheap..Or if you want to unlock more maps which cost like 2 each but its actually like 10 maps in one this games is like world of war craft but mobile easy to use specially if you ever played runescape or something..Alot of people never talk ingame and thats good because when thye do there like im gay i love you are something wierd..

  • Josh

    hey dude nice review some of the things you said should be tweaked have been tweaked. for exzample player to player trading is now avaliable it works really well, and there is also now a world map that you can use to go places but most places you have to buy platnium.
    Josh

  • Alex Towne

    There is also a good game called Haypi Kingdom and if any of you decide to get it put my name down as your refer name, it is Shiloh927

  • http://www.haypi.com Thomas Ren

    This is Thomas from Haypi Inc. and we own the top rank app, Haypi Kingdom in App Store. With the rapid development of our game in the past 11 months, we have added many new elements in the game and recently we have released android version in 10 different languages. Now our app is available on iphone, itouch, ipad, android platform.
    If you are willing to write a review or publish our press release on your website, we will be very appreciative.

    Here is our press release and if you need any other info, please feel free to contact with us
    Haypi Kingdom: Top notch MMOG on your mobile device
    Haypi Kingdom has enjoyed an increasing popularity over the 11 months. It remains among Top 30 in App Store’s USA Top Grossing ranking. Now the game is available on iphone, itouch, ipad, Android, and Windows phone 7 in 10 different languages. Thanks to the excellent interactive capability, this mobile multiplayer online game has achieved an amazing success. In an elaborately organized friendly environment a significant number of players chat, collaborate, compete and interact in the game.
    It is so because iphone, itouch, Android, Window phone 7 users have been in need of a good MMOG for quite a long time, and now this thirst for adventure can be quenched while playing Haypi Kingdom characterized by elaborate strategy systems, dynamics and wide variety of tasks, in-game chats and great administrative support.
    Assuming roles of strategists, leaders, negotiators and entrepreneurs who live in the ancient world players strive to make their kingdom prosperous, strong and well-protected. Therefore the same traits of character must be demonstrated in the game as in daily life: business acumen, sociability, diligence and courage.

    The game is hailed a huge success because in the modern industrial world everyone wants to be a hero and accomplish some noble feat. Dreams can be fulfilled in the virtual world of the Haypi Kingdom where gamers gear up their own army and wage wars, attack and repel enemy attacks, form alliances and contribute to the welfare kingdom. Driven by a desire to progress, players hit the highest levels of production, sell as many goods as possible and create innovative technology.

    One of the main features offered by the developers of Haypi Kingdom is that its server can support unlimited number of players so that it becomes more interesting to chat, collaborate, compete and interact. The game is also supported by Facebook where players can meet new allies and explore a winning strategy.

    In addition, PVP competitions have been held continuously by Haypi Inc. Until December 24th, 2010, 9 PVP competitions have been held successfully where an iPad and other prizes are awarded for each competition. Given popularity of the game and ever-growing number of its fans the competition has been proved to be a tense 15 days long struggle and the prizes are worth fighting for. Though the victory requires preparation and extensive knowledge of game tricks and strategies it does not scare off our brave generals.
    The tutorial, forum, and magazine provided by Haypi Inc. will help fulfill any noble task but if there are still any questions left administrators will be most attentive and willing to help. Given all these advantages it’s even more surprising that the game is available for free to users of the iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, and Windows phone 7.

    About Haypi Inc.
    Haypi Inc. has become a champion software producer due to its commitment to a main core principle: “Never give up until the most entertaining product has been created”.

  • lewowpard

    idk about your claim that PL is the first of mmog for iDevices but have you ever heard of tibiame? it’s been in the wild since 2001

  • Dillst3r

    i love it

  • Dillst3r

    i will play it becuase there is so much to kill and to level up

  • AwesomePossum

    This game is the best! Btw all of the additions he stated have been added now…

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