Developer: Asobimo Inc
Price: FREE
Version: 2.0.5
App Reviewed on: iPad Air

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★★½
Gameplay Rating: ★★½☆☆
Playtime Rating: ★★★★☆
Replay Value Rating: ★★★☆☆

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

I was of two minds when it came to Asobimo Inc’s AVABEL ONLINE. On the one hand, it can be refreshing to enjoy such a beautifully in-depth MMORPG adventure with some of the most stunning 3D graphics to embrace the mobile market. On the other hand, I’m not the biggest fan of “free-to-play” monetization models and I knew this was the kind of game that preys on players to a great extent.

IMG_0615For the most part I spent a lot of time having to continuously reboot the game due to the countless times it repeatedly crashed on me or ceased loading halfway through. This is likely to be expected from a game on such a grand scale, but I was also utilizing the most up-to-date software on the iPad Air, so it seems as though there may be a few hiccups to iron out in the near future.

Avabel is unfortunate in the sense that it manages to lure players in with its amazingly beautiful graphical engine, but then fails to deliver beyond this point. It’s one of the core reasons that many reviewers stress that a great game should not only rely on how good-looking it is; there must be some level of quality to make it in this demanding market.

IMG_0639In Avabel, players can choose from one of six classes; be it a Rogue, Warrior, Ranger, Magician, Creator, or Acolyte. The game is automatically set to the difficulty of ‘Novice’ but it’s possible to change this after reaching Level 5 by locating and speaking to the Class NPC. The adventure unfolds almost straight away, with players given the opportunity to scale two floors and discover and defeat three different types of monster. Defeat is equal to items, which can be exchanged for the in-game currency at the Item Shop. Like any MMO there are a vast number of interesting shops available to scour, but the quests are the majority of that which makes up Avabel.

The control system is sadly where Avabel falls apart slightly, and where it was increasingly difficult to navigate and maneuver the camera. It became a frustrating affair at the best of times. Avabel is an infinite world of quests, missions, PvP battles, and there will never be a lack of things to do, but there is an excessive demand for endless grinding in order to gain any manner of progress in the game.

For hardcore fans of MMO gaming this might be worth a look, but it’s no match for many of the iOS MMOs already out there.


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