Helbreath


Helbreath

Infobox VG| title = Helbreath


developer = Siementech. Co., LTD
publisher = Siementech, iEnt
designer =
engine =
released = flagicon|South Korea August 1, 1999 [http://www.siemen.co.kr/siemen_eng/sub4_helbreath.htm Siementech.co.kr - Helbreath] ]
Private servers: 2002
flagicon|USA February 2, 2003
genre = MMORPG
modes = Multiplayer
ratings = PG13+
platforms = Windows, Linux
media = Download, CD [http://helbreathusa.com/downloads.php Helbreath USA - Download] ] [ [https://secure.ient.com/hb/purchase/purchase.php Helbreath USA - Purchase CD] ]
requirements = Windows
* 400 MHz Pentium II
* 128M RAM
* 8MB graphics card
* DirectX 7 or later
input = Keyboard, mouse

"Helbreath" is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) for the PC, designed by Korean company Siementech co, Ltd. [http://helbreathusa.com/features.php Helbreath USA - Features] ] [ [http://www.siemen.co.kr/siemen_eng/ Siementech Company Profile] ] Initially launched as a Korean-only game, it was soon reintroduced as Helbreath International; serving as an open-beta for the general public. Helbreath USA was later franchised to iEntertainment. Other current and past official servers include Helbreath Asia, Helbreath China, Helbreath Japan, and Helbreath Taiwan.Wine. [ [http://appdb.winehq.org/objectManager.php?sClass=application&iId=5255 Wine AppDB - Helbreath] ]

Private servers

Private servers were introduced in 2002, with the leak of server files to the public, by an ex-employee. iEntertainment with the support of Siementech has issued cease and desist letters directly to the ISPs and web hosts of these servers.

Gameplay

The basics of Helbreath include player versus player (PvP) combat, leveling, questing and socializing.

New players begin as a neutral traveler in the Beginner Zone allowing them to familiarize themselves with core mechanics of gameplay. A player may not exceed level 19 until obtaining citizenship in either Aresden or Elvine. Once a player has gained citizenship, they may choose between status as either a Civilian (enemy town members can not attack you however monsters can attack), or Combatant (enemy and monsters can attack you). This choice will reflect their PvP status amongst other players in the world.

During the first few levels you are given gold to help you out, however once you get past level 20 you no longer are given gold.

Each level gained will allocate 3 additional stat points, which the player will use to increase stats. Stat points also determine your skill levels.

Stat Attribute
STR (Strength) Increases physical damage, maximum stamina, maximum load, maximum health, allows usage of heavier weapons and armor.
DEX (Dexterity) Increases accuracy, dodge, defense. Also, it allows to advance in particular skills
VIT (Vitality) Increases maximum health, health regeneration, maximum stamina, stamina regeneration, physical and magical damage absorption.
INT (Intelligence) Increases maximum mana, casting probability, allows learning of better magic spells.
MAG (Magic) Increases maximum mana, mana regeneration, magical damage, magical hitting probability, magic resistance.
CHR (Charisma) Decreases cost of vendor items, allows one to become a Guild Master.

Upon reaching the maximum level of 180, it is traditional that the player will receive a special-issue set of gear, otherwise known as "Dark Knight or Dark Wizard" equipment. This gear can only be equipped by the player that earns it. The character is also given a weapon or wand depending on their stats, this item can be upgraded with Majestic Points. Majestic Points also allow the person to get other items and change their stats.

Nations

*AresdenAresden is the country which is built by people who worship the mighty god Aresien. The colour that identifies Aresden is Red.
*ElvineElvine is the country which is built by people who worship the powerful god Eldiniel. The colour that identifies Elvine is Blue.

PvP

Aresden and Elvine are hostile nations. Helbreath has a very open PvP setting; allowing and encouraging enemy Combatants to attack at-will.

When a player kills an enemy combatant, an "Enemy Kill" point is gained. These points may be eventually exchanged for "Hero Armor". Like Dark Knight or Wizard items, Hero armor may also only be equipped by the one that earned it.

It is also optional for combatants of the same nation to attack each other. However, if a friendly player actually goes through with killing another friendly player, a penalty is incurred by the offending character being given a "criminal count" and being made an enemy to "everyone" until their criminal kill count is 0. Killing people from the same town gives "negative rep" which has an impact on righteous and kloness weapons.

The following list summarizes essential PvP mechanics:
* Civilians are players that will not be afflicted by PvP attacks. Available until level 100.
* Combatants may openly engage in PvP with any enemy combatant and fellow town members.
* Heroes are players which have killed a great number of enemies. They receive special armors as a reward.
* Crusades are full-scale wars between every player of both nations. Some servers such as Helbreath USA do this weekly. The objective is to destroy the shields protecting the enemy town while building a base in the Middlelands (map) to create a "metor storm" that attacks the enemy town. The winner is determined by the town that successfully destroys the enemy’s town.
* Castle Sieges consist of 3 battle grounds that alternate. Battlefield, where both towns are against each other and have to destroy the enemy’s buildings before the other town. Castle, where the winning town from the previous week has to defend the Castle map form the attacking town.

Items and Economy

The economy of Helbreath varies widely from server to server. In general, all items may be freely exchanged between all players, allowing for a great level of diversity. The only exceptions to trading are Dark Knight, Dark Wizard, and Hero items. Many items that are dropped by monsters include both a primary and secondary attribute, allowing for a variety of uses.

Whether a player can equip an item depends on its weight. (Example: With 90 strength, a player may equip an item which weighs up to 9000 "stone" as it is called in the game (1 strength per 100 "stone").)

Past Gameplay

The level cap of Helbreath was not always set to 180. For example, when Helbreath International offered free gameplay via beta-testing the level cap was set to 120, then successively raised to 130 and 140.

At this time, "hero armor" did not exist and players simply killed one another for the prized "hero capes" and drops and zemstones. Relying on items and stats that their characters possessed, players were forced to learn how to strategically play against -- and with one another. "Battlemages" were not unheard of at the time, but they were quite weak until they reached high levels or unless they had powerful items.

Since 140 was a difficult level to attain, and PVP was the main highlight of the game, many people killed one another in what was known as "North Dungeon", "Noob Dungeon" or "ND". Players had to be over level 19 and under level 80 in order to enter at that time. "Energy Strike" or "ES" was one of the main spells the majority of mages used offensively. Spells such as "Blizzard" and "Earth Shockwave", which, together with hammers, greatly disrupted gameplay later on, did not exist.

Hacking was a problem at the time. Hacks such as "Traveler Hack" could make things messy for players fighting in ND or even "Braiders" who were just passing through to raid the opposing Baracks' of each town. Many other hacks, such as speed hacks, attack speed hack, instant cast hack, "see invisible" hack, manufacture hack, dupe hack, instant logout hack, have been used extensively. Some of them were often distributed with trojans and that led to massive account robberies. All this was possible because Helbreath relied too many checks on the client, and most hacks were never fixed properly anyway. Furthermore, several people had had access to gamemaster accounts and hacked HB server machines, which led to massive item creation and duplication, tigerworm spawns in middleland and so on. A p2p hack emerged shortly after HB went p2p, which allowed playing for free. Siementech never cared for security and never moved most important security checks, which were performed on the client PCs, to the server machines. Instead, they relied on inefficient patches and tacky features to prevent the client from being tampered with, probably out of incompetence. Ironically enough, the first crusade in the international server was launched by a group of hackers shortly before the game went p2p. Although it lacked some of the elements of crusades, that had to be managed by gamemasters, the servers were effectively put in crusade mode. Soon after that, Siementech decided to launch one full blown crusade before the game went p2p.

When the levels caps went to 160, and then to 180 many players had quit and protested on forums and such in opposition to the raised level caps. And in addition to this, the servers had gone P2P (Pay to Play) (which had wiped out the majority of the players). In any case, it was not the level cap in itself that destroyed gameplay in Helbreath, but the mistakes Siementech made updating and upgrading the game. Their graphic artists were great and so were the new creatures created, such as giants, but the implications of introducing more and more powerful spells and weapons, such as blizzard and hammers, respectively, led to unbalanced and frustrating gameplay. Then the apocalypse upgrade and other stuff finally led to a game that had been patched over and over in a careless way, which was quite noticeable.

No official server has gone back in time so to speak. There is no official server nor any plans to make a server that will feature a lower level cap and reduced items for a different type of gameplay. However, it is not impossible that a similar gameplay style could be found in any upcoming MMORPGs or private projects due to the technology now. Many open source game engines exist that use C++, Python, and other programming and scripting languages which may provoke users to create their own games from their experiences of Helbreath. Private servers have been created to imitate such gameplay.

Notes

External links

* Official servers
** [http://www.helbreath.com/ Helbreath Korea]
** [http://www.helbreathusa.com/ Helbreath USA]
** [http://inter.helbreath.com/ Helbreath International]

* Resource sites
** [http://www.hbportal.net/ Helbreath Portal]


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