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ECOL Tactics Online - Open Beta Review
If you enjoyed Final Fantasy Tactics, ECOL Tactics Online could be for the game for you! It is similar in terms of game play. You take on the role of a young captain. The character goes to train in the forest, only to be attacked by a nasty Grim Reaper. Thankfully, a group of skilled mercenaries comes to rescue and saves your young captain. After seeing the mercenaries battle monsters, your captain aspires to be a great mercenary, and the journey begins.
Ecol Tactics Trailer
ECOL Tactics Online Game Play
Follow the journey of your young captain, and you get to take on quests by leaving town. The battle system is turned based. Each of your characters can move once per turn. You get to use a different variety of skills based on the class you choose to be. There are hidden combos that you have to find out by fighting.
You also get to hire mercenaries to help you in your battles. You get to choose any of the four mercenaries:
This mercenaries are your melee combat masters. They are excellent at close range fighting, and also decent meat shields for your ranged and magic classes.
Luke from the game likes to call them ranged pansies. They like to fight from distance, giving you an advantage in term of first strike. They also have a useful skill poison arrow, which is great for tough maps.
These are your glass cannons. Does great magic damage and also possess Area of Effect(AOE) skills. They do run into the trouble of mana problems early game though.
Your typical healer class. They also have some AOE skills later in the game, but they are excellent at healing and using support skills like silence, paralyze and more.
You can also get master mercenaries, which are more powerful than the regular mercenaries, as they have better stats and health.
Battle Game Play
Since it is a tactics game, you have to position yourself such that you take the least damage possible and finish of the enemy without dying.
Normal attacks from the front do regular damage. If you attack from the side or back, you get bonus damage, with back attacks doing the most damage. This applies to enemy attacks on you as well, so proceed with caution.
Certain skills that you use can lower enemies defense, inflict abnormal statues such as poison, which is extremely helpful in dealing with monsters or bosses with high health points. You also have to balance your team so that you have a nice variety of classes to combat the different monsters. Some monsters are weak against magic, while others are weak against physical attacks.
In battles, you can perform special combos by positioning your characters in certain ways that triggers a combo. These different combos deals extra damage or inflict statuses when done correctly. A few combos that they teach you early in the game are rear support, knock back support and more. It is very useful, especially in tough main quests.
Missions and Quests
In the game, you get to the main quests, denoted in red, while optional quests are denoted in green. The main quests are a must to be able to follow the story line and get some good experience from it. Since if you were to just go level in a map, the experience you get is rather small, making it inefficient to level that way.
One good thing about this game is that it allows you to use AI play, so the AI will automatically move and fight for you. It is an excellent way to level if you are doing other things online as well. You can also fight in lower maps to gain easy experience without having to be there to play throughout the entire battle. It is pretty neat for lazy grinders.
Items, Crafting and Upgrading
In this game, you can craft items by buying or finding recipes. The items that you buy from the NPC cannot be upgraded. White item's cannot be upgraded. Only green items can. A lot of good items that are rare or unique can only be found through fighting monsters and obtaining recipes from battles.
Since crafting is a huge factor in your success in the game, you will need to keep the materials that are found from monsters. All recipes have different materials needed to craft them.
You can upgrade your items using enchantment cubes. These can be found in battles or purchased from the cash shop. The highest upgrade an item can go is +10. The probabilities of you succeeding gets lower as you try to get higher. Should you fail along the way, your item goes back to 0. So, do not upgrade if you know you cannot afford take the chances.
You can get items from the cash shop to prevent your item from going back to 0. Anvils increases the success rate of your upgrade. A bronze hammer prevents your item from going back to 0 if the upgrade fails. If it fails from +5 to +6, it drops back down to +3 instead. A silver hammer makes it drop only by 1. A gold hammer does not make your item upgrade go down when used. For a more detailed version, click here for my upgrading guide.
In the game, you need skill stones equipped to be able to use them. Each skill stone can be upgraded by hitting the S button in town and upgrading them by combining them. Skill stones can be upgraded to level 5. Upgrading to level 2 for a particular skill stone requires 2 of the same level 1 stones. Level 3 requires 3 level 2 skill stones, and there is a chance you will fail the upgrade. Should that happen, you lose your skill stone.
You can however prevent that from using a scroll of blessing, which stops the skill stones from breaking.
You can sell your items either by trading with other players or put your items up in the trading board. You get charged a small fee for putting your item up on the trading board. It is also a great place for people that love to trade and make money, buying low and selling high.
Community and Party
You can join Guilds and also interact with the community by partying with other players in the game. It makes the game so much more fun and interactive. When you party with others, you get to save on mercenary BP (Battle Points), which determine whether you can deploy your mercenaries or not. Once they run out of BP, they cannot be deployed. For main missions, they do not take away any BP, which is a plus.
These town NPCs are the characters that you will be talking to often when you start out.
She is the Inn Keeper. You will be talking to her for most of the main quests.
The warrior in the mercenary office. He hates archers and also gives you main quests as well.
He owns weapon shop. Here you can buy starter weapons from him.
Armor shop owner. You buy armor gear from her.
Monica is the girl to go to for upgrades and crafting. You will either love her or hate her for upgrading, depending on your luck.
She sells cash shop items.
He is the storage keeper. If you need room to store stuff, go to him.
Kaire and Karea
They are your item and accessory shop owners respectively. Healing and status ailment items are sold by Kaire. You can buy accessory recipes from Karea. They are twin sisters.
You can join or create a guild here. To create a guild, you have to be level 10 and also have 50,000 gold.
Review and Conclusion
I thoroughly enjoyed the game. I am still level 10 as I am writing this. The game has very relaxed music, which is a plus. I give this game a rating of 8/10. Try it out yourself, and let me know!
Have you tried ECOL Tactics Online yet?
Check them out!
- Ecol Tactics Online Leveling and Exploration Guide
I am giving you a brief summary on the best places to get experience and also the use of mercenary expedtions.
- Ecol Tactics Online Guide: Strategy and Tips
A brief guide on things you could do on Ecol Tactics Online, level and get stronger faster.