Remember the late 80's/early 90's of home consoles? Did you spend dozens of hours on the first generations of RPGs like Zelda, Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy. If so, congratulation for being raised during the most important period of gaming history, and NEStaIgia will surely bring back some memories of your childhood and sometimes. Unlike the aforementioned games, however, in NEStalgia you won't have to be alone when facing hordes of monsters or gigantic bosses. Indeed, thanks to the internet, it is now common for people to can play online with friends or strangers in the thousands of available MMOs, and despite its pixels and more than retro look, NESTalgia is a full-fledged MMORPG.
A rustic yet appealing class system
Like any MMORPG true to its name, NEStalgia starts with the creation of a character. We can customize our little pixelated avatar at will in an attempt to give it a touch out of the ordinary with the few available options. Once that is done, it'll be time for the choice that will impact on our journey the most, the class of our character. is the class that we are going to want to play during our journey. If the class of a character is already essential in a solo RPG, it is even more so when our character is thrown in a harsh multiplayer world. When creating a party, be it with friends or other players, the synergy between each of your classes will more often than not play a decisive role on your survival in the harder areas of the game.
Thankfully, with the eight classes available in NEStalgia, each with different skill trees players can branch into, it shouldn't be too hard to form parties with a good variety of classes. First there is the the three common classes you'll find in any RPG, namely the Wizard (glass cannon mage with sky high Intelligence but bottom low Health), the Cleric (healer with average stats and holy spells) and the Soldier (tank with a high Health and high Strength for physical attacks). The notable classes will, however, be the Ranger, jack of all trades class of the title encompassing the class Trinity on its own, possessing a great health pool, as well as average physical strength, magical damage skills, and healing spells. While this makes it one of the most sustainable classes in the game, its performance as a dedicated mage, healer or tank will always pale in comparison compared to the others. The remaining classes include the Warlock, Conjurer, Merchant and Ninja, each with unique attributes that I'll let you discover.
Back to the roots
Gameplay-wise, NEStalgia starts off as any other RPG. Players can evolve in a semi open-world universe that consists of ten geographical areas, each their own towns, quests, dozens of different monsters and creatures, as well as dungeons and the powerful bosses that generally come packaged with. Thankfully, players can unite their group's strengths to conquer said dungeons or bosses, because we must not forget that NEStalgia is above all an MMO. As they progress through the game, players will gain levels and skill points that can be used to improve their abilities capabilities or learn new ones. The characters themselves wont the be only things that can be improved since, as you can guess, the game features a large variety of equipment that are, however, class locked (plate armor for warriors, and cloth robes for mages), and can be bought, obtained as loot, or crafted.
Players start in what appears to be a tutorial cave where they will learn the basics of the equipment and battle systems. From the first minutes it, they will have a general idea of the plot – their characters having travelled through time (just like us) to, you’ve guessed it, save the world. Nothing exceptional here, but then again that’s what makes the charm of NEStalgia. Following this short tutorial, they will have access to the first town, as well as several secrets optional quests. Of course, this being a MMO, they will have the option of partying up with other players, completing quests and running through dungeons together (note that if none of your friends are around, and you don't wan't to team up with strangers, you have the possibility of creating parties made of yourself and befriended monsters). If you are seeking a more thrilling experience, you can even take part in PvP battles, at your own risk, however, since dying in NEStalgia comes with the loss of your hard earned gold.
To conclude with this, while it is true that its graphics are not really of our time, NEStalgia has a lot to offer, both to veteran gamers and those born during the era of 3D game engines. With the market being saturated with titles that simply seem like copy-pasta copies of each other, Silk Games takes the gamble and successfully offers a "new" and refreshing experience.