Heads up, MMORPG fans! Aside from waiting for titular upcoming games, the future seems to be bright as there are also plenty of specific anime-inspired MMORPG titles heading your way soon.
What is a MMORPG?
MMORPG, which stands for “Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game,” is a perfect mix of role-playing (RPG) video games and “massively multiplayer” online games in a sense that a large number of players interact with each other within a virtual world.
Like in most RPGs, players take on the role of a certain character which is often based in a fantasy or science-fiction world. They take control over a lot of the character’s actions.
The realm of elves, orcs, and dragons are a common setting but there are also some titles where players can choose different worlds to explore, such as far-away planets or post-apocalyptic wastelands.
Gameplay footage from Blue Protocol
Here are some of the main characteristics of MMORPGs.
- Theme – Majority of MMORPGs are heavily inspired and designed after fantasy themes. This is believed to mimic the popular game Dungeons and Dragons, a fantasy tabletop role-playing game published in 1974.
- Main goal & Progression – In most MMORPGs, the main goal is to level up a player’s character. The characters in these types of games have some specialty which can be either enhanced or improved upon through gaining XP. Players can gain experience points by battling with monsters or finishing quests from the game’s NPC or Non-Playable Characters. Players can also progress through garnering different combat items – which you can collect through combat as well.
- MMORPGs are different from single-player or small multiplayer online RPGs by the number of players able to interact together. It’s also because of the game’s persistent world, which continues to exist and evolve even if the player is offline and away from the game.
- Social Interaction – MMORPGs are created so that RPG players can play with each other, encouraging social interaction. To some extent, some titles even encourage a level of teamwork that cannot be found on other RPGs. To accomplish these teamwork-focused tasks, players will have to assign roles to the members and then subsequently work on those goals.
- Role Playing element – Players, of course, have the option of Role-Playing in the game itself. Most of the time, there will also be relevant forums and guides that will guide players into how they should be playing the game. Players may also purchase relevant material that fits a certain role for the player, like warriors garbs for instance. They may also learn how to speak and behave like a true warrior.
- Subculture – It’s only natural for most MMORPGs to develop their own subculture; which includes slang, inside jokes, and unspoken rules for every player to ideally follow. Once you’re a part of the community, you’ll know exactly what we’re talking about.
- System – A number of MMORPGs make use of a client-server system design. Because of this, the system can produce a consistently-running virtual world that players can connect to anytime through the use of a software. The software can give players an initial access to the open world, but add-on packages need to be purchased at a premium.
Top Anime MMORPGs You Should Play in 2021
If you’re looking for some anime-inspired MMORPGs to check out soon, better keep an eye out for these stunning and impressive titles!
Tower of Fantasy
Platforms: PC, Android, iOS
Tower of Fantasy is an upcoming, highly-anticipated free-to-play online RPG developed by China-based Hotta Studio. The title is primarily crafted using Unreal Engine 4, with the game’s reveal trailer stirring comparison with another well-celebrated and hyped anime action RPG Genshin Impact. Some fans are also claiming that they feel Dragon Raja vibes with the game.
The game’s setting is heavily inspired by futuristic looks, which is a reason for some fans to draw similar comparisons with Honkai Impact 3rd. Most notably, characters also wear stylish suits in combat.
It also has an appealingly bright anime style design. Although it has its fair share of open world trappings, there’s actually a solid storyline for players to follow.
Its first gameplay trailer reveals some intricate details about the upcoming game, although there’s still much more information under wraps. In particular, its character creation system seems very detailed with custom sliders to change height, weight, and facial features. There’s also a number of pre-made costumes and face details such as hair, eyes, and headwear.
Mounts will provide the players with different means to explore around the open world. In the first trailer, it was revealed that a hoverboard, motorbike or jetpack are some means of transportation made available in the game.
Like many other MMORPGs, players will also delve into exploration upon playing the game. Your character will have to climb dangerous cliffs, swim through rivers and lakes, and stumble across new locations.
Combat is another huge part in Tower of Fantasy, where players can expect melee and ranged fights— which are nothing short of dazzling and flashy.
An official release date for the anticipated title is yet to be confirmed, but fans can expect a 2021 launch window.
Blue Protocol is an upcoming online anime RPG title from Bandai Namco. This stunning game is powered by Unreal Engine 4 and already looks promising with huge production values.
In this MMORPG, you must explore and save a world on the brink of destruction together with your friends. There are also elements of space and time travel involved, which highly suggests that players will be treated to some stunning and inspiring sci-fi locations.
The first four classes on Blue Protocol are already revealed: Twin Striker, Blast Archer, Spell Caster and Aegis Fighter. A closed beta for the title ran exclusively in Japan back in July 2020, which lasted only for a couple of days.
Players can feel like they’re wandering through a fantastic anime while playing the game, thanks to its amazing views and impressive bosses. Expect for a fast-paced and dynamic combat experience as well.
Blue Protocol’s official release date is yet to be confirmed, but Bandai Namco states on their website that the game can be expected to launch some time in 2021.
Platforms: PC, Android and iOS
Gran Saga is a new stunning, cross-platform (PC and mobile) anime MMORPG developed by NPIXEL. The game is crafted using Unreal Engine 4 with excellent graphics quality.
The visual quality of the game is remarkably appealing and colorful, even to non-anime enthusiasts. It has a distinct anime style that isn’t particularly surprising, but enough to catch someone’s interest.
It poses various amazing effects and charming classes, with the early Gran Saga gameplay promising a visual feast for its players.
Perhaps one of the most promising features of this game is its gran weapon system. With 20 weapons initially revealed, these are guaranteed to provide different playstyles for players who tend to experiment until they find their favorite support. The weapons feature unique designs, from hammers and turrets, to staffs and claws.
The unique idea of a gran weapon system aims to replace the traditional and (rather) tiresome combat power rating observed in most MMORPGs titles. This will provide players with more options to divert their focus from an infamous vertical progression system.
Gran Saga’s release date is 2020 in Korea, but its global launch is expected on January 28th, 2021.
Project BBQ is an upcoming fighting game and a sequel to Dungeon Fighter Online, set in the same world and connected to the game sharing the same old characters, locations and story.
The title runs on Unreal Engine 4 and is developed with a PC focus as of writing. Unlike its hub-based predecessor, the sequel will feature a seamless world where players can run across fields and villages and explore instanced dungeons.
Its developers confirmed that the game is a fully 3D rendered Anime MMORPG. Project BBQ will be filled with “large, open-world maps and instanced dungeons” similar to many traditional MMORPG titles.
Players can expect good-looking action combat from the game. From its teaser trailer, there are around 8 different classes to choose from – each having their own unique playstyles, strengths and weaknesses.
Although Project BBQ was originally slated for release in 2020, fans can expect its full release coming in 2021 or 2022.
Formerly known as Ascent: Infinite Realm, this upcoming MMORPG is developed by Krafton and published by Kakao Games.
The game focuses on dynamic combat between two Realms, Vulpin and Ontari. Instead of tab-target, players may use diverse skill combinations thanks to the game’s non-targeting system.
Notably, Elyon will take your battles in the skies with massive airships— although the elements of aerial combat won’t serve as its core feature. Instead, its 3 pillars include skill customizing, dynamic combat, and PVP competition.
Of course, the title will still stay true to its usual MMORPG features on the ground, such as dungeons and traditional housing.
The game already conducted a closed beta in South Korea back in April 2020, but an official release date remains to be yet announced.
Which MMORPG title are you most excited for in 2021? Let us know in the comments below!