Arcane Legends Hands-On Preview

Spacetime Studios has the mother of all comeback stories. The MMO developer has faced certain death numerous times in the past decade, as PC publishers looking for big-budget games came and went. But on iOS, they’ve found a winning formula: Three MMORPGs, all of which are free-to-play, that have earned millions of downloads and a fan base that can’t stop playing. But those players still want more, so next up for the studio is Arcane Legends.

Arcane Legends is another 3D, freemium MMORPG set in a fantasy universe. But, you might be asking, didn’t Spacetime Studios already do the fantasy genre thing with Pocket Legends? The answer is that while Pocket Legends had the cutesy animal warriors like eagle archers and teddy bear swordsmen, Arcane Legends will be slightly-more grown-up. The characters in Arcane Legends aren’t terribly realistic (they look more like anime characters), but they’re definitely human.

Well, some of them are. The rogue, who specializes in poisons and melee, is a lithe female human. The warrior is a brutish tank with gigantically broad shoulders, like the Commando from Star Legends. But the sorcerer, a support class who specializes in healing, is a tiny blue goblin-like creature.

We’re told that Arcane Legends will combine some of the more successful attributes of Spacetime’s earlier games. The connected levels from Pocket Legends, where you could run from one zone to the next, will appear in Arcane Legends as well. Plus, the charge mechanic from Dark Legends returns in the new game, and it’s been expanded to let you charge the skill moves as well.

Other improvements in Arcane Legends include lower lag, so your attacks will show up on your fellow players’ screens quicker. The AI has been improved, so enemies will actually run away from you sometimes instead of running towards their own demise. And many of our readers will be happy to know that Arcane Legends will work on older iOS devices, like the iPod Touch 2nd generation.

Spacetime’s formula clearly works, and they’ve got the MMO experience and active fanbase to prove it. While this fourth game may start to feel a bit formulaic to us, we’re impressed that Spacetime is continually improving and fine-tuning all of their games. Arcane Legends will be available in the App Store around August or September as a free download.