Indie

PAX East — Therian Saga Hands-off Impressions

Therian Saga is a fantasy, browser-based role-playing game developed by indie studio Virtys. The game revolves around the player managing their large cast of heroes and their days, charging them with certain tasks and assignments that will be carried out regardless of whether the player is presently online or not.

Developer Virtys described the game as one that emphasizes its social aspects and community-building. The “goal” of the game (as there is no true finality to the game) is to expand your map and, essentially, your civilization. Indeed, much of the game’s enjoyment revolves around establishing ties with other players, communicating with them, and adding them to your world. Indeed, the map capable of being expanded upon is huge, providing for a nearly-endless amount of gameplay hours.


Therian Saga Map

Unfortunately, Therian Saga is not a successfully innovative game. Indeed, it feels akin to a cross between Civilization, The Sims, and with having RPG elements.  While this may sound intriguing in concept, it is far less so in practice. Regrettably, it is a combination that seems to appeal only to a specific, niche audience. The RPG elements come to fruition when considering different varieties of heroes and their individual strengths and weaknesses. Naturally, some characters are better suited with certain skills such as doing Wood work, while others are better with Metals. And, as always, improving your abilities will assist you in battle, a feature which appears to be only minimally focused-upon.

The developers describe Therian Saga as a game that requires long-term dedication to enjoy, and it is likely this very aspect that will keep the game from truly kicking off to mass audiences. As the game is very complex, it is reasonable to assume that most people will be off-put or will quickly lose interest in the title because of its high entry bar. While long-term players will surely find it rewarding, this is likely to create difficulties for Virtys in regards to marketing their game and making it known to larger audiences.

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