The Chronicles of Spellborn, Reborn?

The Chronicles of Spellborn lives… sorta…

I took some time to get the beta client for The Chronicles of Spellborn and connect it to the fan-run server this morning. All you can really do is just run around the main city, but dang, how I would love to see what Spellborn would have become if it had made it.

Developed at a time when many new MMOs were content with iterating on the EverQuest/World of Warcraft model, Spellborn was a picture storybook come to life. Player gear was non-visible; you could pick up new display pieces, but they rarely influenced your stats. The intense visual style was entirely appropriate for a game set in the shards of a destroyed world; everything looked alien to some degree.

The innovation extended to the combat, which, unusually for the time, let you make quite individual iterations on the familiar tank/mage/rogue template. The random nature of the combo-based combat meant each encounter was different, and someone who could arrange their skills correctly had a huge advantage in PvP.

We don't get many MMOs out of Europe here in the US. Ryzom, Dofus, Allods Online… whenever we do get one, we get a unique experience. But few were as completely new as The Chronicles of Spellborn.

You, too, can run around in TCoS! Download the beta client and the connection details. Links and information in the official forums at

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Web developer for a Connecticut-based insurance company that's over 200 years old! Also a bicycler, a blogger, a kayaker, and a hunter of bridges.

2 thoughts on “The Chronicles of Spellborn, Reborn?”

  1. I played Chronicles of Spellborn either in beta or soon after release, forget now which it was. I know I didn’t pay for the privilege. At the time people were making all kins of claims about how different it was from other MMOs but my impression was of a rather unfinished, quite generic game with nothing especially notable about it.

    Of course I didn’t last long or get very far so my impressions come from the first few levels only. Maybe it changed after that. I have a vague memory that the zones were level-locked and I was confined to a relatively small area.

    I do remember something about the odd way the gear worked, as you describe, which I seem to recall I found quite annoying, but all he details have long since eroded from my memory. I also remember that targeting was by some form of reticule, which was one of the things people made a fuss about at the time.

    I certainly have no memory of it looking either particularly alien or like a picture-storybook. I might have to download the revival client and go check my memories against reality. They rarely match.

  2. I added the pictures here that were in the G+ post. It was a MMO set in the shards of a shattered world where humans were stranded with an alien race (which was a playable race) and the third race that was keeping them all alive.

    It reminded me of a book I loved a long, long time ago by Michael Reaves, “The Shattered World”, but more scifi than fantasy.

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