RAN Online is a free 3D 'campus-based' MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role playing game). The concept is based around several schools competing for control. Developed by Min Communications of Korea, RAN Online has become one of the most played MMORPGs in Malaysia, China, Indonesia, Thailand, Taiwan and the Philippines. It is completely free to play and uses the virtual item asset model.
The plot revolves around four universities: Leonair, Phoenix, Sacred Gate and Mystic Peak. These universities were founded by the Sacred Financial Group. These schools were protected from outside corrupting forces by force fields. One day, Leonair's force fields failed and the entire population of the school turned into the undead overnight. Students from the three remaining schools are trained in fighting techniques for them to survive outside the safety of their schools' force fields. Outside the school, the students kill corrupted beings and students of other schools, and the plot unfolds through quests.
When a character levels up he gets 3 stat points which can be distributed as the player chooses among the following stats. Once added, these points cannot be redistributed unless the player uses the "Oblivion Potion" B-E. Characters also have a natural gain of statistics as they level up. Some weapons, armor and accessories also add to statistics, but these statistics are removed once the item is unequipped.
Characters may learn skills by using skill scrolls at an appropriate level with the appropriate number of skill and stat points. Skill points are acquired one by one as a character levels up. Skill scrolls are acquired on quests, at shops or dropped from monsters. Skill scrolls may be red, blue, yellow and green which can only be learned by brawlers, swordsmen, archers and shamans respectively. Skills may do anything from a high-damage attack to a self-aiding buff. Skills are typically classified into DEX, INT, POW and ETC. Specific skills are activated within its specific stat. ETC skills do not require stats but has level requirements. Skill scrolls require several skill points earned by leveling to learn. Skills once learned and leveled up cannot be unlearned and the skill points are lost unless the Oblivion Potion(bought in the item Shop) is used.
The Chat Function is divided into: General, Private, Party, Guild, Shout, and Alliance.
General - Can be seen by anyone within server within the chatters proximity.
Private(@) -Can be used to talk with a player directly and privately.
Party(#) - Can be seen by the members of the party you are in.
Guild(%) - Used to communicate with the members of your guild.
Shout($) - Can only be used with the help of a megaphone which can be acquired at the online shop. Can be seen in the entire server
Alliance(!) - Used by guilds that have an alliance with other guilds.
As well as trading and party applications, players can initiate duels with each other - this must be agreed upon by both party leaders, and the parameters of the duel such as health regain rate for both participants and the maximum number of health potions that can be used are set before starting. There is no experience loss/gain from these battles, and are a way of proving the skill of players, and of settling disputes.
Players can find items within the game that can improve the quality of their equipment. Burrs and Protection Potions for example are used to upgrade weapons and armor. Elemental resistance can be added to armors through the use of items such as iron, sodium, crystal and others.
Players can buy items via the game publisher's website. Players load up with cards bought at various stores and the credits are used in buying items at the website. These items can be anything from potions, costumes, accessories, weapons, etc. Once bought, these items are sent in their Item Bank wherein the player can remove them any time to be put in his/her inventory. Whilst in the item bank, items with expiry dates will have their timers stopped.
However, once the player moves these item/s into their inventory, the timers are activated and the item will expire according to the set expiry dates, whether the user is logged in or not.
Pets were added in Episode 3. These pets can learn skills which can aid its owner in battle. These skills consume the pet's energy and can be restored with Pet Food which is bought from the Item Shop.
As of February 2007, there are Japanese, Taiwanese, Malaysian, Chinese, Filipino, Thai and Indonesian servers running for RAN online. As of December 19, 2006, the global service has been shut down. According to Alexa.com, the Filipino RAN Online Philippines version has become the no.2 (next to Ragnarok Online) Massively Multiplayer Online Roleplaying Game in the Philippines. Concurrent users have reportedly peaked at 30,000 and still rising.
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