Tuesday, January 30, 2007

A Message from Sara

Have you walked into the Teen Department of the Carnegie Library in Oakland and seen a myriad of computer screens filled with game clients that look like tiny cartoons? Have you seen the itty-bitty classes running around, casting spells, fighting Treechnids (and other spooky monsters)? This game is known as Dofus (DOUGH-fuss), and it’s the hottest game to hit Pittsburgh since football.

Dofus is turn-based French subscription MMORPG with extensive and intricate battle, crafting, and job systems. What does this mean, you might be asking yourself. Turn-based? MMORPG? What!?

“MMORPG” stands for Massively Multiplayer Online Roleplay Game. This means that a large amount of people come together using the Internet to slip into the roles of the characters they create for group and personal interaction. A turn-based game is that in which you must anticipate your opponent’s moves and act accordingly—if you like games like chess, you might be interested in a turn-based game; another example of a turn-based game is Puzzle Pirates. Realtime games are those in which you have no specific turn; all groups, friends and enemies, move in sync. Such games include Halo and World of Warcraft. Subscription means that, though you can play the game without paying money, if you pay $6.90 a month, you get full access to the game and more options for your character.

Though many people play Dofus for different reasons, the main point of the game is to level your character, equip it as best you can, and basically go around owning the world and fighting others. If you are not interested in the battle aspect of the game, you can still work on your Professions (such as farming, bow carving, mining) for money, or you can run around finding and completing various quests. However, even if those “career paths” interest you, you really ought to accept the fact that Dofus is a war game, and logging on puts you directly into the melee.

My character is an Osamoda named Myriad; I play on the second International server, Rosal (the other being Rushu). An Osamoda is a character that summons animals to fight for it—a chicken-like character named a “tofu,” a boar that pushes enemy characters around to manipulate battlefields, a stone giant named a “Crackler” that walks up and stomps you. Myriad is short and thick, as all Osamodas are, with a black dress and cap, yellow hair, and light pink skin. She is complete with a small set of horns and a lovely forked tail. There are many other classes, twelve total, and gamers at the library come in all classes, genders, and colors. The other day, I was playing Dofus and a boy next to me leaned over to me and said, “I have a level 111 Sram on Rushu… What server are you on?” (A male Sram is a skeleton in a cape with a hood who attacks while invisible, so they are very tricky, and hard to kill!)

I have been playing Dofus since its Beta period, which means since it first opened for English-speaking people to test. I played this at the library and left the client (window for playing) behind, never bothering to close it when I logged off… And people started to open the clients, curious as to what Dofus was. A week ago, I walked into the library, not really paying attention, and was shocked to see six or seven people all playing Dofus, not all in a group. Was this because I left the client behind? Or did people find it on their own? Either way, I find it amazing that people are now exploring and experiencing the game I’ve grown to love over the past year and a half. I’m so happy to realize that I am now surrounded by a supportive and creative Pittsburgh Dofus community, so that when I need help with something in the game or I’m looking to game with someone in real life, all I have to do is cast my gaze around the library, and sure enough, someone is playing Dofus.

If you are interested in playing the game, go to community.dofus.com and click “Download.” If playing from the library, after you click “Download,” click the top left yellow button to run the program; make sure you run it to the Desktop, not Program Files, so that you can open the client until you log off.

Once you download it, experiment with classes, characters, and servers—have fun! If you wish to subscribe to the game, try the Rosal server; message Myriad if you need help with anything. If you can’t get in touch with Myriad, do what I do… Look around the library and ask for help! With so many people playing, I’m sure there are many potential friends just waiting for you to ask to play.

1 comment:

Armbyorg said...

Myriad! Wow! It's Armbyorg, I just found this randomly, wonder if you'll read it.