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WAKFU closed beta key giveaway and hands-on preview

UPDATE: Thank you for visiting GamesRadar. Unfortunately, our supply of closed beta keys for WAKFU has run out. We are attempting to acquire more closed beta keys to share with you.

Don’t be fooled by its cute looks. WAKFU is one of the most complex and unique MMOs we’ve played this year. Set in an ethereal world full of floating islands, WAKFU looks gorgeous with silky sprite animations and vibrantly colorful environments. Fans of Final Fantasy Tactics and Disgaea will feel right at home with WAKFU’s battle system, which plays out like a tactical, turn-based JRPG.

After making your way through the game’s introductory area, you’ll choose a nation to pledge allegiance to. As you begin exploring, you’ll quickly notice that WAKFU doesn’t handle leveling or character progression in the traditional sense. The kill quests and the NPC chores (the bread and butter of MMOs) are absent, for the most part. Sure, you’ll still need to grind on enemies to level-up. But WAKFU leaves it up to you to decide how much time you want to spend battling to raise your character level for the most part.


Above: A trailer for WAKFU. Final Fantasy Tactics meets EVE: Online in this crafty MMO

Instead, the WAKFU puts more of a focus on its giant crafting system as a means to power-up and progress. Crafting is key, as just about every piece of equipment and useful item needs to be created by a player with materials that are also harvested by players. You can learn just about every crafting profession – and there are tons of them. You can be a farmer to grow and harvest grain, a lumberjack to create planks of wood, and a trapper to grab useful materials from fallen beasts, just to name a few. The list goes on and on.

But although harvesting and crafting away may sound dull, it’s not. That’s because of the way combat and crafting tie into WAKFU’s ever evolving ecosystem. Whether you’re killing monsters and harvesting materials from their corpses or planting trees to harvest later, almost everything you do in WAKFU leaves a footprint on the environment. Engage in a lengthy killing spree to level-up and harvest, and it’ll actually be possible to make that type of monster extinct in the game permanently. Since some materials for crafting can only be harvested by certain monsters, and since almost every item of importance is produced through crafting, making any monster type an endangered species will have a huge impact on the world’s economy.


Above: A group of players team up for a boss battle. WAKFU’s sprites are gorgeous and the animation looks great. See more screenshots here

The same goes for the game’s flora. As a lumberjack, you can chop down trees to create wood planks that can be used by other professions. But you can also plant clipping from trees, which will eventually mature into full grown trees. It’s like that old promise Peter Molyneux made about watching an acorn grow over the course of your game in Fable. Only this time, it’s true – and you can see it happening throughout the world as you explore and adventure.


Above: It’s good to be governor. Elected players set taxes, policies with other nations, and give other players tasks. In this screenshot, you can also see how far you can zoom the camera in

Since WAKFU is still in the closed beta phase, we have yet to see the game’s player controlled ecosystem fully blossom. But even with the relatively small population of players taking from and giving back to the land as they play in the closed beta, the developers are already seeing players work the system with surprising consequences on the state of the world.

“One of the cool things that already happened in the closed beta already is that the [Weeping Willow Trees] actually went extinct,” explained Assistant Producer Franko Fonseca. “There were two players that had cuttings and people were only aware of one of them... and that guy actually went on the forums and said, “Hey, unless you pay me a certain amount of in-game currency, I’m going to destroy these cuttings” – and we don’t know what ended up happening with that particular guy, but there was a second person that had the cuttings. I’m not sure if he was actually aware of what was going on in the forums, but he actually went into the game and spent time planting and reintroducing Weeping Willows into the world.”

Holding a tree clipping for ransom? Devoting one’s personal time to make a virtual world a better place for everyone in need of Weeping Willows? It’s the kind of drama we’d expect to read about on an EVE: Online forum – and really speaks to the depth of the game’s economy and crafting system – and the amount of control players have over it.


Above: Every player gets a Haven Bag. Inside the bag, you can grow crops, craft items, and sell or trade items to other players or guild members

WAKFU is expected to launch later this year – and when it does, it’ll be free-to-play. Expect the usual assortment of vanity items for sale through a virtual goods store that won’t give purchasers an unfair edge over others. We still haven’t seen any higher level gameplay features, like grouping up for dungeon runs, fighting big bosses, joining a guild to work the marketplace, or being at war with another nation – but it’s all there, waiting for you to get crafty and level-up.

But enough of our impressions. We are excited to provide you with a closed beta key, so you can try WAKFU for yourself. So scroll down a few pixels for instructions on how to get your key to start playing today!



How to get your WAKFU closed beta key

1. Login to www.gamesradar.com. If you’re not already a member, click here to register. It only takes a moment.
2. Head to our WAKFU closed beta key page to get your code.
3. Make a note of your code and head to the official WAKFU website to create an account and redeem your key.
4. Enjoy.

Mar 4, 2011

Topics

Square-Enix

We Recommend By ZergNet

21 comments

  • retral - April 27, 2011 11:43 p.m.

    This game better have damn good antihack - if players can destroy the game's monsters/fauna without even cheating, what's going to happen when some assholes with hacks decide to make EVERYTHING extinct?
  • cirra - March 24, 2011 9:45 p.m.

    I can't get this key ;(
  • Toxich - March 8, 2011 10:51 p.m.

    gamesradar, lyers, where´s my beta key. dont become member, don´t trust them. They dont even update page to say that there is no beta keys. http://static.gamesradar.com/images/mb/GamesRadar/us/Daily/2011/03-Mar/04/WAKFU%20-%20beta%20key%20giveaway/030411_wakfu_content--article_image.jpg they are just trying to get members,, in the worst way possible.
  • kristanner - March 7, 2011 5:22 a.m.

    :( Didn't make it in time. Anyone know how to get ahold of a key, or have an account they're not going to play anymore? I used to play and loved Dofus, this would make my week!
  • Viroquet - March 6, 2011 6:03 a.m.

    JEEZUS!!!!! I just joined for the dragon age 2 giveaway and now your giving me a key for a game ive been wanting to play for 2 years?? I love this website.
  • JJBSterling - March 6, 2011 2:27 a.m.

    I love the show so thanks Tyler!
  • burnsideking24 - March 5, 2011 11:20 p.m.

    uh... it says i have to put in a user name and password to download the Windows version. so i put in mine, and it doesnt work... wth do i do to get it? captcha: arrested rrouti
  • Drakarx - March 5, 2011 5:21 p.m.

    YEES ! i love the spell system of wakfu ! i wanna play it ! thank you gamesradar! yesss!!!!!
  • TyrannosaurusTexMex - March 5, 2011 4:30 p.m.

    Looks awesome!
  • DeathbyFira - March 5, 2011 2:08 p.m.

    it looks sweet and they are makeing it for Xbox live too this might be a huge hit cuz alot of people would love to play a MMO on there X box 360s lol i defelty would be on all the time and maybe take a break to whoop some asses in MVC3 lol
  • MkLangley - March 5, 2011 11:27 a.m.

    I got an email from Square enix to registrate a months ago, i never thought id see the light of the beta xD Thanks GR!
  • FalconMbuster - March 5, 2011 7:47 a.m.

    Ah man, this is crap. No more people for closed beta |: |. I love testing out new MMOs, too!
  • dreamgor - March 5, 2011 7:18 a.m.

    sorry guys looks like they lno longer accept people for closed beta. I guess I have to wait for the open one.
  • Craza - March 5, 2011 5:06 a.m.

    Jesus, I've only been waiting for Wakfu for two-three years now! Huge fan of Dofus and I've been wanting a crack at Wakfu. Thanks for the opportunity!
  • toahero92 - March 5, 2011 4:43 a.m.

    Here I am once again..... Ok Uh Sorry about the rantyness of my previous post.. Upon further examination with unclouded eye I see that the context is that you weren't given time to experience those things stated... So uh.... I'm sorry.
  • adamstephenson - March 5, 2011 4:23 a.m.

    This game looks beautiful. Stupid fried graphics card slot....
  • toahero92 - March 5, 2011 4:22 a.m.

    Ok, I'm sad now. Upon further more careful reading of the article. I can see that this is just a Q&A session put to paper. I was there for the willow trees thing and yeah that happened. But that's pretty much a common occurrence now... For instance, Thistle went extinct in the first 3 days of the beta (thistle is the first thing you can plant and harvest as an herbalist) I was one of the 7 people who replanted. And another thing... "We still haven’t seen any higher level gameplay features, like grouping up for dungeon runs, fighting big bosses, joining a guild to work the marketplace, or being at war with another nation"... That entire statement is incorrect. Lets tackle the first thing, shall we? 1: "... like grouping up for dungeon runs" Yes, you can group and very easily. All you do is right click their character in the game world or their name in the chat itself, you then select "invite to your group" AND BAM! They are in your group. You CAN go into dungeons with your group, otherwise a "dungeon" is just an individual instance. Max party size is 6 members. 2: "... fighting big bosses" There are MANY "big bosses". From the Celestial Gobball[sheep/ram thing] (the first possible boss to encounter) to The Black Raven (A Level 200 boss which I suspect is the highest level boss in the game). I personally have seen or fought 10 unique bosses (and I haven't even been to all the areas yet or explored it all). 3: "... joining a guild to work the marketplace" I'm in a guild, Most everyone is in a guild (Though I can boast to having the largest member base at 52 members). You don't have to be in a guild to "work the marketplace" you just have to have the right equipment and enough money to pay the taxes. 4: "... or being at war with another nation" In the first week it was war in action but not name between the nations. Also, "war" is nothing but one (maybe more than one) large guild harassing members of the opposite nation. There is also a justice system in place, In that you do things an area needs to gain citizen points and you lose them by by causing excess or recess. I don't know if you would be allowed to write a "current state of the game" feature in which you stated your opinions(I mean considering that 1: I'm just words on a screen & 2:I'm sure your employers have better things in mind for you to do) BUT I really serious in my offer to provide an beta key for you in you need one to do so. I just want people to know more than what the marketing drivel deigns to put out. Rant over :( Sorry to have wasted your time.
  • toahero92 - March 5, 2011 3:51 a.m.

    This is pretty awesome man. I'm already in the closed beta (was from the beginning), and I was unaware that Ankama had a deal going with GamesRadar? Anyway, please keep in mind that this is still a BETA and as such has very annoying bugs. Keep an eye out for me, Anonymöus. Or my guild, Crows. Also... Do you play the beta Tyler? If not I can provide you with my valentine beta key. I would love to grind with you.
  • 8bitBaby - March 5, 2011 1:35 a.m.

    @KNITEpanda ankama IS a great studio! i'm talking about as an art studio it is great! from an animator/comic book artist perspective (an indy one at that) what these guys are accomplishing IS great. i could go on and on in depth, but i imagine if you don't already know about all the little details of this studio... you don't care. so... meh. ANKAMA IS GREAT! mwa hahahahahaaaaaaaaaaaaaa
  • KNITEpanda - March 5, 2011 1:25 a.m.

    Being a former DOFUS player I can say that Ankama is NOT that great of a studio. I've been hacked on DOFUS, the acclaimed "unhackable" game and their customer service/support needs more of an "English" database. Most of them barely speak it. Not to mention their Admins and Ops are all volunteers...people who pay to play the game themselves and not actual Devs of the game. WAKFU looks awesome, dont get me wrong. Been following it for some time. But Ankama still needs work. Glad they had Square Enix help them out.

Showing 1-20 of 21 comments

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