4Story: First impressions

By Danny "Ralsu" Gourley
By Danny "Ralsu" Gourley

Many games try to emulate Blizzard's World of Warcraft (WoW), and 4Story, the latest game from Zemi Interactive Inc., is no exception. Why wouldn't a game want to be like WoW. Blizzard's title is wildly successful and does so many things right. 4Story is such a close WoW clone that I might have thought I was beta testing the Wrath of the Lich King expansion for WoW if the translation in 4Story had been better.

Download and Installation
Before downloading any game, it's always best to check out the system requirements. 4Story has modest system requirements, which are listed below.

Required Suggested
OS Windows 2000/XP Windows 2000/XP
CPU Pentium4 1.6GHz Pentium4 2.4GHz
RAM 512M 1G
VGA GeForce4 MX440 64M GeForce FX5200 128M
DirectX  DirectX 9.0c DirectX 9.0c
HDD 2GB or more 3GB or more

4Story features three races with two factions.

Gamers can download 4Story directly from the official website as either a single file or in four parts. The download is 745MB.The install size on my hard drive is only 1.15GB despite what the system requirements note. I don't know if it will download more content as I reach new areas, or if the system requirements are just estimates that never came true.

Installation was simple. I just double-clicked the installer and let it do the work. When it finished installing, I was able to login using the account I had created during the download. After a short patch period, I was able to play.

Character Creation
Character creation for 4Story has two factions like WoW. Players choose one of three races: Fairy, Human, or Werebeast. Each race can pick any of the classes but is better suited for some than others. A Fairy is adept at magic use and makes the best Wizard, Priest, or Summoner. Werebeasts are very strong and make the best melee fighter, such as Warriors, Assassins, and Archers. Humans are stereotypically versatile and make a decent version of any of the six classes.

I selected a faction--I think the 4Story equivalent of the Horde--without paying much attention. In accordance with my modus operandi, I made a Wizard, a human female named Morryn. I didn't have a ton of customization options. I could choose for 4-5 styles of faces, hair styles, and hair colors. I could nor change the height or weight of my avatar.

Players can activate an optional HUD that keeps HP and MP visible in the thick of the action.

Interface and Controls

4Story did not take me to any special newbie area, but my starting camp had quests for all of the basic controls and learning the interface. Really, there was not a lot to learn for me, as most things were...well, exactly like WoW. I think my point about that is made already.

The mini-map was in the top-right of the screen. It had helpful icons to mark quest givers and locations, but I found it hard to read. Expanding it to full size made the icons easier to read, but the background behind them did not display terrain very well and was like some pixelated camouflage.

Along the bottom of the screen was a thin bar that displayed my current XP. Just above it on the left was the chat box. In the center was the Cash Shop button. To the right was a single line for system messages, two skill hotbars, and the menu bar. I found I could move many pieces of the user interface around.

The final noteworthy aspect of the interface was the HUD, which (when activated) displayed my HP and MP right beside my character at all times. I don't like playing with a HUD, so I disabled it.

Controls were the norm. I could move with WASD or mouse clicks. I could cast spells by pressing the correct keys along the 1 to = row or F1 to F12. Exclamation points told me when a character in the game had a quest for me. A question mark told me I could turn in my quest to that person.
There's more to 4Story. Continue to page 2.

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