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Home > NEWSSweeping is another skill available to the Kung Fu master

Sweeping is another skill available to the Kung Fu master

Blade & Soul is by far my favorite all time oriental MMORPG even though it has some minor flaws. The design of the world is very beautiful and fits perfectly well with the characters in the game. It's just too bad that the game feels like some kind of console port because of the small and linear maps during the first chapter of the game. Then again If I think about it isn't so bad because I could progress through the game a lot faster compared to other MMORPG's that made me travel really far for quests objectives.

Except for the final episode (which we'll get into later) Blade & Soul is not an anime that highlights its fanservice-i.e., the camera does not exploit every possible opportunity to zoom in on the female cast's T&A. Of course, that doesn't change the fact that several of the main female characters wear outfits that leave little to the imagination. The series is not without the occasional boob bounce either. But when it comes down to it, if you are used to typical “female fantasy armor,” this probably won't bother you much.

I played as a Kung-Fu master during my hands-on with the game. This class is melee-focused, and deals almost all of its damage via close range blows. The primary defensive ability is the counter, which is a one-second parry followed by a counterattack. Landing a counter lets you follow-up with a heavy knock-back strike. Sweeping is another skill available to the Kung-Fu master, which knocks down a target. When successful, new skills become active, including a kick and a mounting ability. The kick deals direct damage, while the mount skill keeps the enemy in a down state and vulnerable to even more skills.

Of course, you cannot ignore the vibrant reds populating a majority of the scenery, from the spiked armour of the Pleasure Gang to the overwhelming towers of Tomon Inn and its hostess Karen's wardrobe. While, in the strictest sense, this colour is supposed to bring good fortune to the wearer, you cannot ignore the other obvious meaning: blood. Each of these occurrences is surrounded by that underlying morbidity, although it tries to hide its face from the public, we all know that it has touched each of these groups to elevate them to where they are now, or where they soon will be.

To improve your character's stats (defense, block, attack, HP, pierce etc.) you need to upgrade your weapons and accessories. There's also this “bagua tile” or “bo-pae” that you can use to enhanced your critical, HP, defense, attack etc. It's an eight piece object that looks like an amulet. You need to collect and equipped all pieces together for the full enhancements to work. Any player can get weapons, accessories and bagua tile and even costumes by killing boss monsters. These monsters will drop an “essence” as a reward that you can use to spin a “roulette” giving you a random item. Here's a hint. If you found a roulette in the map, then the nearest monster in the map will you give the “essence” that you can use in that roulette. Hit that monster before it dies so that you will also get the reward if other players are present.

Based on a MMORPG by NCsoft, Blade and Soul follows Alka, an assassin from the Clan of the Sword, as she travels the land looking to kill a woman named Jin Varrel. Jin Varrel is a swordswoman who can use a corrupting form of dark magic called Impurity and is the person who killed Alka's master Hon. To make things difficult Alka is made a wanted person by Palam, the evil empire Jin Varrel works for.

Along the way Alka comes across several faces, but the most prominent of them are a mysterious and beautiful innkeeper named Karen, a drunkard bounty hunter named Hazuki, and the leader of an anti-Palam gang named Loana. A few weeks ago Richard Eisenbeis named it one of the Five Anime of Spring 2014 You Should Be Watching. Is Blade and Soul really one of the best of the season, or is it just another soulless video game-based anime?

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