Time and time again, we have been surprised by the sheer tenacity of the avid fan. When I last wrote about Holographic Yugioh, I certainly was not expecting to come across an even better fan project now.
Ragnarok Online was certainly one of Korea's biggest MMORPG then. But it's appeal was certainly not graphics. Because it was still, essentially, a slightly evolved 2d game. Though a huge hit then, it is simplistic compared to the titles we have now.
RO was released back home in 2002. And it has been translated and released again all over the globe. Now, 14 years late, a Taiwanese fan,David Tai has been keeping the flame bright with his Unity project; RO x VR. Already there are 150000 views!
This is his latest video on the project. It is incredibly detailed (40 minutes long!) and very technical indeed. The video starts with the first town and it is more like a beginner's guide to RO x VR. David is trying to retain the 2D feel of RO with VR interaction, so even though the entire town is rendered in 3D, the NPCs, monsters, your status screen,etc, all are still in 2D.
Interaction with NPC is interesting. They will only respond when you are within talking range. This is to avoid any lag or complications when there are many players in the same space trying to get to the same NPC. Wave your hands to open up the dialogue window, and select your options. It's already looking very good so far.
We next move to the fun part, combat. He demos this with the pink poring, RO's mascot. You choose the weapon you want from your equipment list, and it materialises IN YOUR HAND! This is fantastic! You can stab it into the ground, pick it up with your other hand, etc. The freedom of motion is simply unbelievable. David has retained the original damage digits, it appears in white when you attack, and in red when you get hit. As in the original RO, the Poring will only attack you if you hit it.
Once you kill a monster, whatever it drops will appear on the ground and you have to pick it up to retain it. And David explains that normal critical, dodge and hit rates still apply. So you might hit a monster, but that doesn't mean it takes damage every time. Same goes when you are attacked.
There are of course many bugs to be worked out. Running around is a big problem, because you have to be physically running, and I think he made the map too big, because he does not seem to be covering much ground even when jogging for some time. And 3D vertigo is quite bad because the googles jerk when you move.
Already some Japanese fans are already hailing it as RO meets SAO, with some wondering why RO2 could not be done like this instead. He apparently built the entire thing from scratch, so everything is seamless.
All in all an astonishing project. He seems determined to complete it, so subscribe to his channel and follow his updates.
Written by Don