As much as they would like to call it a CBT, the game was more or less an OBT. Do you have a joymax account? Accept their terms of agreement and you were in the beta. If there is a significant update that makes it worth re-evaluating the game, then I will do it. Digimon Masters Online is a slightly newer Digimon MMORPG. It plays more like a traditional one rather than like the turn based Digimon Battle Online. Digimon Masters is based on the Digimon Data Squad anime, but it promises to have some of the features from the other seasons such as the alternate forms of evolution rather than just the standard Digisoul one.
You are attempting to join DATS. That's about it. There's a main storyline quest that follows Kurata as he prepares for the invasion of the Digital World. It eventually leads into a war, but so far the story has no progressed much further than that. Since it seems to follow the storyline of Digimon Data Squad, it will eventually lead into a war between Kurata and his artificial Digimon army vs the Digital World where you try to stop Kurata from comitting genocide.
The game itself is kind of old and you can really tell. It is by no means terrible though, but it is by no means great. Clones are rampant considering there's only 3 faces and your overall look is determined by what clothes you have access to. There are very few available in shops to change your look so expect lots of clones running around. Some of the higher level skill effects are nice, but other than that it is not so great.
You begin the game by choosing one of the 3 characters from the anime series as you base character model. They are Masaru, Touma, and Yoshino. You also pick one of 3 starting digimon either Agumon, Gaomon or Lalamon. A future patch is suppose to introduce Ikuto and Falcomon. So far, your starter Digimon is the only one that will be able to achieve the highest level of evolution, Burst Mode.
The game is fairly simple and straight forward. The tutorials teach you the basics of the game and gives you a few healing items to begin with. You point and click to move and select enemies. It is possible to grind with just the keyboard if you are lazy by using TAB to select enemies and then just pressing the corresponding buttons for actions. Luckily, it is possible to skip the tutorial if you wish to do so.
The difference in Digimon Masters Online is that there is a tamer level (you) and a Digimon level. The tamer levels up slower compared to the Digimon, but gains small increases in HP and MP. You have to be at a certain level to equip a Digivice or use certain accessories that boost the stats of Digimon. Higher level Digivices also have more slots to equip more boosts. If your Digimon falls in battle, it counts as a death and you respawn in town despite having a full HP tamer. You can have up to 3 Digimon at any time, but you can only call 1 out at any given time. MP (it's called Digisoul in this game) is needed to activate Digivolving.
The Digimon levels faster than the tamer and their stats grow accordingly. Digimon hatched from eggs that have had higher amounts of data placed into the egg will have higher stats corresponding to their size. For example, a Digimon 120 cm will have 120% of the normal stats while Digimon at 90 cm will only have 90% of the stats. The highest I have seen so far is 132 cm. After acquiring a certain amount of experience, they also gain skill points to power up certain attacks. At level 11, your Digimon gains their Champion form, level 25 for Ultimate, and level 41 for Mega. Burst mode is currently unavailable. Only the starting Digimon can achieve Burst Mode.
Digimon come in 3 primary types. Data, Virus, and Vaccine. This does not play much of a factor in the game despite the fact that it was suppose to be a rock, paper, scissors thing. Digimon come with various types such as Fire, Wood, Earth and such each with their own strengths and weaknesses. It has the potential to result in a very different outcome since some enemies can have a 25% damage difference due to their element.
Items mostly drop in the form of Digieggs. You have to go to NPCs in town to scan them. The fee is small and what you get back is usually worth more than what you spend to it. There are currently 5 types of Digieggs that drops. The most common Digiegg is the broken one that drops and you use the "Return Digiegg" function at the NPC to exchange it for money. A basic Digiegg is just a normal egg and it usually contains healing items. The second one is a low cost "green" egg, which contains higher end healing items and a low rate for data or equippable chips. The third one is a high cost "green" egg that usually contains the data needed for hatching Digimon. The rarest one is the "blue" egg and that one usually gives you a Digiegg that can be hatched. On rare occasions you can actually get equipment that has slots from enemies. Money comes in Bit, Megabit, and Terabit. It is just a typical bronze, silver, and gold system.
Hatching Digimon is a very important aspect of the game. Finding a hatchable Digiegg is rare, but each one is a potential ally. You need a certain amount of data to be able to "insert" it into the Digiegg. Once you insert data into the egg 3 times, you can hatch it. However, if you continut to insert data, it results in a larger and stronger Digimon. It is possible to insert data into an egg 5 times. Unfortunately, each time you insert data, there is a chance that it can fail resulting in a loss of the data and potentially the egg as well. The odds of successfully hatching a Digiegg is fairy low and it is very difficult to hatch a Digiegg with 5 data inputs.
Partying is highly encouraged. Everyone can retain their own drops and exp is given to everyone for each kill rather than being divided. The more people that team up, the faster leveling goes. It is possible to obtain a Mega level Digimon in 2 days with an active party. Of course, this also means you get fewer drops, which hurts you in the long run unless you just hunt for everything you need.
In order to fight higher level enemies, you will need to Digivolve. Your basic Digimon partner will only get you so far. Higher level enemies are much stronger and as a result, you need to Digivolve in order to match their power. Digivolving requires you to constantly consume items that restore your MP. It takes a certain amount of MP to Digivolve and more to maintain it. The higher level Digivolution you are trying to use, the more MP you will need to maintain it. Luckily cooldown between combat and non combat mode is very short so you can often just use cheap healing food items.
The main problem from the game comes from hatching Digimon. In order to obtain new Digimon, you have to defeat various Digimon until they drop an egg. The rate is probably 10% or so for a egg. Each type of Digimon drops a different typed egg. If you are lucky, it will be a green bordered type egg. These are much rarer than the normal eggs. You then have to identify the egg. The green bordered type egg can become either a healing item, data (needed to hatch eggs), or an actual digimon egg. Many turn out to be items, but on rare occasions you will find a blue hatchable Egg. Once you do, you have to collect data from the same Digimon type eggs. It can take up to 5 pieces of data to start hatching an egg. You have to input data a total of 3 times to hatch an egg, potentially up to 15 pieces of data. On top of that, hatching fails very often. You keep the egg if you're lucky, but all data is lost regardless of how much you put in to try to hatch the egg. Should you attempt to cancel hatching the current Digiegg, the egg is lost permanently. This makes it extremely difficult to obtain new Digimon. Even a 1 data per insert Digimon can take over 80 data to hatch at the top level. The only good thing is that you can scan Digieggs and convert them into items to exchange for the Digiegg of a Digimon that you actually want. You get a Kunemon egg and lots of Insect Data drops as part of a quest, but that will probably be the only other Digimon you see for a very long time.
Another problem is that inactive Digimon are not healed. While your active Digimon is fighting, the other 2 you have in your Digivice are doing nothing. It would help if they were at least regenerating HP and MP while they are in there, but they are not. Instead they do nothing. As a result, extra digimon serve no purpose other than to avoid the type that you are weak against. Once you can get a good DIgimon that doesn't have a lot of weaknesses, this doesn't matter much.
A third problem is that characters suffer from fatigue. Fatigue is shown on your HP bar with a grey part that fills up part of the HP bar. It would not be a problem if it did not make your run ridiculously slow. It depletes if you spend time outside of town regardless of what you do. It forces you to run back to town at a incredibly slow speed. It is just really annoying. It depletes even if you are in AFK mode outside of town. You'll have to stand in town for a few minutes to recover it.
A minor problem is that the arrow that guides you for quests does not always work. Some NPCs are present in multiple locations and the game gets confused by it. Luckily, the maps are small enough so that it is not a serious problem.
N/A - serve to purpose so I ignored them.
Digimon has the potential to be a decent MMO, but obtaining Digimon is far too difficult. The eggs drop at a decent rate, but eggs that actually give data are rare considering how much of it you need. There is actually a lot more data and eggs floating around during "closed beta" since you up to 4 mystery packages every hour you remain logged. The good thing is that the game does not have a lot of grind due to how the party system works. Nonetheless, it makes it extremely expensive to obtain the Digimon you need. For reference, a common piece of "low" data costs 6 M, which is 240 broken Digiegg fragments.
5/10 - Hatching Digimon should be the best part of the game, but they made it the most tedious. Your other Digimon also seem pointless other than to avoid your main Digimon's weakness.