If you’re already a seasoned MMORPG player with games like Guild Wars 2, World of Warcraft or Black Desert, you’ll feel right at home in BigTime, an upcoming MMORPG set in the far future, where you and your friends can explore exciting dungeons across space and time, complete quests for Albert Einstein, battle against robot pirates and giant insects, all while earning some precious loot along the way.
Although the game has not been fully released, we’ve had the opportunity to play the game in Early Access, so let’s dive in!
Character – Less is More?
As RPGs do, the game starts out with character creation, where players will have to pick between 4 classes – Time Warrior, Chronomancer, Shadowblade, and Quantum Fixer. But don’t feel too pressured about getting things right here, there’ll be chances for you to swap out something called Pocket Watches to switch classes later in game.
Once you’ve made your decision, click on “Confirm” and… that’s it.
Just like that, you’re tossed right into the world of BigTime – no fancy character creation screens and a thousand sliders for us to mask our real-life insecurities. Everyone gets the same cookie-cutter Character, at least for now.
Game Mechanics – The Old Familiar
At its core, Big Time is a fairly simple game. Left click to attack, right click for another attack. Chain these up properly and you’ll get to perform a special Combo Attack. Items and class-specific skills can also be assigned to Hotkeys for quick, easy access, even though the camera angle makes aiming a little tricky sometimes…
For the most part, combat plays out smoothly, even in dungeons jam-packed with large mobs of enemies, players and your screen lighting up with spells and special effects like a front row seat to the Fourth of July. Watching your character spin, twist and turn as he pulls off acrobatic combos, or rain down balls of fire is extremely satisfying.
Kill enough enemies and your character will level up, earning skill points that you can use to learn new spells or buff up your character stats. Depending on your character class, improving specific stats may be required to equip specific gear. In a similar vein to most other RPGs, game progression in BigTime is more or less the same – kill enemies, earn XP, earn better gears, level up, rinse, repeat.
Challenges – Same Same, But Different
Since each dungeon is procedurally generated, you’ll never have the same adventure each time. If you enter the same dungeon multiple times, you will quickly realize that they’ll all have different maps, requirements and enemies. On paper, these dungeons offer some sense of replayability, forcing players to think on-the-fly since each dungeon is unique, but the novelty wears off quickly.
While some of the side quests, which you have to complete before facing a dungeon boss, may require some skill and creativity, most of them tend to be fairly trivial. Be it collecting a certain amount of items or activating switches guarded by mobs of enemies, these tasks can get tedious. However, the objectives do get harder if there are more or higher-leveled players in your party. For ARPGs, the end of a dungeon run is usually filled with a bountiful lootfest raining epic and legendary items but…that’s not the case here. The defeat of bosses is usually anti-climatic with no notable treasures to rejoice for.
In fact, most of the loots are found randomly throughout the dungeon from normal mobs but even then, these are usually more of the same items you’ve been using since Level 1, just with better stats.
NFT / P2E – Fashion Time
Much like other crypto games, NFTs will be a big part of the Big Time universe, which are divided into Cosmetic NFTs and SPACE NFTs. Cosmetics NFTs can be found in-game, which will allow you to change the look of your weapons and character.
On the other hand, SPACE NFTs are used to expand your own personal space, known as the Time Machine, where you produce new items and upgrade your old ones. SPACE NFTs are also needed for players to generate and earn Big Time Tokens in the future.
Both types of NFTs can be purchased from the marketplace but at the moment, features for the SPACE NFTs aren’t available just yet.
Verdict – Go Big or Go Home?
Big Time’s attempt to become the first AAA game in the Web3 space is a commendable one, but it’s clear that alot of work still needs to be done.
With familiar combat and gameplay, Big Time’ puts a roguelike spin on the traditional RPG formula. There’s no overarching story for players to complete – you can just pick up the game with your friends and start exploring, right off the bat.
Each dungeon offers new quests and challenges to overcome, which keeps things fresh for returning players while forcing them to constantly adapt their strategies and builds. However, things can get stale after a while.
Unlike most RPGs that reward exploration with hidden secrets or rare treasures, Big Time fails to beckon this same sense of adventure. There’s little to look at and look for around the map, with players usually just sprinting straight from one dungeon to another.
Make no mistake though, Big Time is a gorgeous game at times, and the camaraderie of its small but tight-knit player base was a heart-warming welcome to the game. But as it is, there’s simply not enough proverbial carrot to put in the grind for now.