When I volunteered to cover this title, I was initially intrigued by the screenshots of the game’s artwork and illustrations that I had seen on the game. Steam page. Mist . Heritage is a free online multiplayer (F2P) game with many of the characteristics you would expect from a typical MMO.
Mist . Heritage Handcrafted by a small team of developers at Virtys Studios, and the team took a different look at this fantasy MMO, quite literally. The game features a 2D, top-down world where the player characters directly move around like pawns from a board game like Sorry.
Basic character creation aspects.
At first, I was a bit worried that I might not like what I signed up for myself. When I was initially going through the character creation process, I felt it was relatively meager, by today’s MMO standards. I became worried because the paper doll avatar was limited in face, hair, skin and facial hair aspects. I was even more worried when I found that my usual “men’s ponytail” was not an available option in Mist . Heritage. When all was said and done, the male adventurer in my bare sandals seemed to step out looking a bit like a piece of cardboard on the screen. But when I immerse myself in the RPG-ish gameplay and details of Mist . Heritage I was surprised and here is why.
Mist Legacy’s World Perspective
Movement in the world is from a top-down perspective
Most of the time you will be playing Mist . Heritage from a top-down perspective as you explore the world of Myriaden. A world covered by the Mist, a barrier that restricts your people from seeing beyond your own borders. You have been trained as a Mistwalker supposed to explore the Mist. I assure you there is no such thing as an earthquake story. But you will use “click to move” to get your avatar around the world.
You’ll also see other players’ avatars move around, but you won’t be able to interact with them. There are chat tabs in the game for general chat, group chat, and battle messages. You can group with other players but there are no modern conveniences here like queuing “group search” etc. Groups seem to be most popular for completing daily quests and daily boss mobs.
While “head moving” isn’t the same as seeing other character models running around, it’s still enough to remind you that there are live players here. The conversation seems to be relatively lively, and the players don’t seem to be malicious and helpful, so far.
Some areas cannot be easily reached through a straight line “like a crow flies”. There is another reason some areas are inaccessible but there will be more later on. Sometimes the game needs to find the best path, i.e. a dotted line, to get you from point “A” to point “B”. For longer distances, you have stamina that can be used to “run” for a while by holding down the shift key. I tend to move for shorter distances. Why? Because as you move around the game world, you have the ability to uncover points of interest, e.g. collect nodes, probe buttons, enemies to engage in combat, etc. These points of interest “revealing” when you’re near them makes exploration fun.
As you explore, markers with a question mark icon will also pop up as markers and can then be thought of as landing points for quests, gatherings, sleeping, etc. Numbers inside the circle on the map shows where to accept the quest.
One of my complaints about this panoramic map display is that it is not zoomable and cannot be rotated. So if the quest marker is offscreen, you can’t see it in your current field of vision. Thankfully, selecting the “M” key brings up a less detailed world map that can be rotated to see where all your quests are. The world map is also useful because it has several overlays. For example, overkill “hunt” tells you which hunting nodes you’ve explored on the complete map.
The game also operates within the boundary of a day/night cycle. The panoramic map display will darken as the world clock approaches midnight. Dark effects for shops and NPCs as well as crowd changes that you might encounter in a wooded area. One example is encountering a bandit and monstrous spiders. There are a few quests that require you to hunt at night but for the most part I find myself resting at an inn letting the world clock turn to the next morning.
The depth of the skill system
Many skills to master
Mist . Heritage is a “classless” game and rests on a heavily skill-based progression system. You still need to earn battle experience to level up your character. But this also means that your character evolves and develops based on the skills you use. This translates to weapons, tools, etc you loosely equip. But the skill system doesn’t end there.
Skills are divided into five categories and on top of that you have the typical faction reputation to maintain and earn. Skills level up using specific weapons or gathering tools, or just by cutting down trees. Character trait skills are primarily leveled up by participating in skill-based quests.
I mentioned earlier that some areas are not easily accessible on the overview map other than going through a straight line. Sometimes you are restricted from entering an area, for example an area with lots of trees, until a certain skill is high enough.
There are detailed and varied skill quests.
A lot of adventure lands and skills are leveled up through skill-based quests or engaging in collecting and/or crafting. Skill quests sometimes have steps to level up some skills and some work like multiple choice missions where you decide how to answer or based on what skill you want to gain more experience .
Most collect buttons and skill quests are repeatable after a certain amount of time, for example a few hours. Once a “node” is detected, you will be able to see it on the panoramic map each time you are near it. Thankfully, clicking things like the gather button icon will move your character to that button and begin the one-click collecting process. The same is true for encounters with crowds.
One complaint I have regarding the skill system is that sometimes you are forced to level up a skill to perform a required quest. What comes to mind is the quest that teaches you how to use a companion. One of the skills required at a certain level is “subterfuge”. Subterfuge refers to a skill where “deceit is used to achieve one’s goals”. This is usually a role-playing style or trait that I usually never force my characters to portray, I’m an old Scout. Well, here in Mist . Heritage Sometimes it is a necessity.
Sometimes the act of upgrading the required skill requirements or gathering the necessary materials can start to feel like a chore or a treadmill. Thankfully, those moments didn’t last long for me, and I always felt motivated to explore more parts of the panorama map.
Fight in a foggy world
Turn-based combat, click and choose
I intentionally left the discussion about Mist . Heritagefight until the end. It’s turn-based which I fear will frighten some readers. This may offend some people but it is an aspect that I tend to enjoy.
There is of course level-based PvE combat to help level up your character. During combat, each character associated with the player has a set of talents assigned to the number keys. Most talent is clicking on a number and then using YOUR MOUSE to target a crowd to hit. Talent opens automatically based on skill level. Once unlocked, the talents themselves level up. In Mist . Heritage there is no typical “talent tree”.
Most “encounters” in Mist . Heritage is by choice. There are times of day and areas where you get thrown into a battle. There is an option to run away, which does not always allow escape, but it is an option. Fleeing is useful in some situations because you never know how many mobs are in an encounter until you start it. If you drop in battle, you will lose any new items collected in a treasure chest dropped at your current location until you can get them back after respawning.
Additionally, there are five PvP battlegrounds that offer weekly “green crowns,” which are microtransaction-based currencies. I didn’t get a chance to participate in this.
Further in the game, you can hire or enlist companions. A full solo party can include up to five companions, but you will have to pay a fee. Expanding your companion group slots across three slots is considered a micro-reaction purchased with the blue crown.
Your home is far from home
Your own kingdom!
You also have your own kingdom to manage. Here you can cut down trees, build craft shacks and other structures like barracks for your companions. You can also access your vault, craft, do player-to-player trades, and access the in-game player market.
The portal button takes you to points on the overview map whose portals you have opened. Think of this as fast travel. They were very handy but very scarce very early on.
This is where you will be transported to if you fall into battle. You and your companions will also be restored to health.
In-game microtransaction store.
As for the in-game store, there’s not much to be excited about right now. The Items tab contains a handful of mostly event-themed cosmetics. The Privileges tab has options to maximize your solo team slots. There’s the option to purchase five more talent slots for your character, but it’s unclear if they’ll come into play for PvP encounters.
Thoughts of parting
As you can see, there is a lot to do in Mist . Heritage from an RPG point of view. Style and depth create a change of pace and distraction compared to other third-person MMOs.
The biggest issue on my mind is that the game needs some quality of life changes. There are only a few things that work as pastimes, aside from some minor English language problems.
An example is inventory management is a bear. It’s not exactly clear how close you are to being thwarted, in practical terms, and there’s no easy way to know how much you need to destroy to make room for something.
Another example is that there is no way to craft multiple items. For example, some quests want you to craft three hatch covers. To do so, you open the crafting screen, select your materials, click craft (for an item) and then the crafting interface closes. Rinse and repeat ‘x’ times. Then to make matters worse, there is no way to select multiple “windows” and move them all into your inventory, you have to move each one separately.
On the plus side, the development team seems to listen to player concerns and is making changes. It will be interesting to see where Virtys does this F2P MMO and if they can thrive on the meager in-game store they have so far. In short, the entry is free, so why not give it a try? You can enjoy your time in there as I have!
https://www.mmorpg.com/previews/mist-legacy-preview-an-mmo-with-a-different-perspective-2000124155 Mist Legacy – MMO preview with a different perspective