Friday, March 6, 2009

Atlus Online Announces MMORPG Neo Steam

Atlus is well-known for great Japanese RPG games like the Shin Megami Tensei series, but their new focus on uniting their community has led to the creation of a new online division and web portal. The first title announced under this division is the free-to-play MMORPG, Neo Steam: The Shattered Continent. While another MMORPG, Shin Megami Tensei: Imagine, has previously been released in conjunction with Aeria Games & Entertainment and currently in open beta, Neo Steam is the first title to be primarily handled by Atlus and looks to possibly be a true competitor in the genre.

Neo Steam is one of the few free MMOs to try and provide a high-quality alternative to World of Warcraft. It is set to feature full 3D graphics, a steampunk-inspired theme and story, extensive customization, a pet system, and robust PVP combat between rivaling nations, the technological Rogwel and the magical Elerd. I have tried other free MMOs, but this one sounds most promising. Most games tend to play it safe with typical fantasy trappings, but steampunk has rarely been touched. If Neo Steam can pull off a game with a similar polish and gameplay feature set as WoW, then it could be enough to lure others to at least try it. With many subscription-based competitors such as Warhammer Online and Age of Conan failing to dethrone Blizzard's juggernaut, free-to-play MMOs may become the new trend in North America.

No official release date has been announced, but you can currently pre-register for beta access at the link below.

Source: Atlus Online

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