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Furcadia

Published by Dragon's Eye
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Primary Genre Secondary Genre

I have found this a rather difficult game to review, since it is not a game in and of itself but an interface to whatever games you and others online choose to play. I have reviewed Furcadia in this joint capacity but the ratings at the end are purely for the software.

Furcadia screenshot Artinum, the reviewer's character

Furcadia is an online world where you can meet many different people and play your own adventures with your own characters. Serious roleplayers can enjoy themselves in Strict RolePlay where rules and limitations and so on are very important. Those who enjoy a more relaxed amosphere can play Persona RolePlay, where the rules are minimal and players can interact as they please - so long as they remain "in character".

If roleplaying doesn't appeal to you, explore Furcadia and visit the various 'dreams', areas designed by players for each other to visit. Dreams vary from simple meeting places for social chat to games. Items can interact with players or the landscape thanks to a scripting language called "DragonSpeak". Dreams vary hugely - one allows you to build your own house!

Furcadia screenshot The Acropolis

I began learning about Furcadia with a look over the website, and retired with a headache. There is a LOT of information about the world, its peoples, its geography, rules, history and much more. Most of this information is interesting but irrelevant to the newcomer as I soon found out. It mainly comes into its own when you embark on a stricter roleplay (when a little knowledge is expected).

You must, of course, connect to the internet to play Furcadia and it helps to have a fast link such as broadband. With a mere phoneline you may find it takes forever to download dreams or even to update when you move about. Graphically the game looks nice and as much as possible has been done to reduce the amount of downloading that is required.

A lot of effort has been taken to make the game look and feel good, from designing your character the first time you play to the useful tutorial that guides you around the controls and basic elements of Furcadia. There are background sounds like birds chirping and music playing as well as a selection of simple sound effects, and both sounds and music can be turned off if they annoy you.

In summary, Furcadia is a beautiful production limited mostly by the speed of your internet connection. The software itself is very good with room for expansion as users see fit. The major disadvantages of Furcadia are usually due to the players - finding your way around can be difficult (a few routes were blocked by players who wouldn't move - despite polite and not so polite messages from those around me!) and new players may find joining a social group or roleplay is not easy.

Furcadia can be excellent fun for those who enjoy roleplay - but arrange some friends to join you or you could be wandering around bored for some time.

Graphics 60%
Sound 70%
Playability 70%
Longevity 80%
Overall Score 75%
Silver Star

Published on 04 Apr 2003
Reviewed by Andrew Williams

Keywords: furcadia review, dragon's eye reviews, dragon's eye games, furcadia scores, pc game reviews, indie game reviews, independent gaming.

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