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Cabal Online

Cabal Online is a 3D fantasy MMORPG set in the world of Nevareth. Explore a variety of environments as one of seven classes. Join one of two warring factions and take part in fast-paced PvP action!

Publisher: ESTsoft
Playerbase: Medium
Type: Fantasy MMORPG
Release Date: February 2008 (NA)
PvP: Duels / Open PvP / Arenas / Nation Wars
Pros: +Skill Combo system. +Tons of PvP features. +Flashy skill animations. +Low system requirements. +Intuitive map, quests, and beginner progression.
Cons: -Dated visuals and user interface. -Repetitive PvE content. -Generic fantasy setting and gameplay mechanics.

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Overview

Cabal Online Overview

Join the ranks of powerful heroes as they embark on quests to save the world of Nevareth from its prophesied destruction in Cabal Online. Choose from one of seven classes and make use of deadly combos to survive in a world inhabited by unique and often hostile creatures. Grow stronger by mastering the use of your skills through training and constant use. Join Nation Wars and participate in massive battles for the good of your chosen faction. Watch your back as you journey through a brutal world where duels, ambushes, and knives in the back are an everyday part of life.

Cabal Online Key Features:

  • Custom Character Builds –  allocate stat and skill points manually to craft a unique character.
  • Varied Environments – explore a scorched desert, verdant jungle, and frigid tundra within minutes of starting.
  • Many Ways to Fight – Cabal is a PvP focused MMORPG, flag yourself for Open PvP, bet on player duels, and take part in daily Nation Wars.
  • Skill Combos – chain skills to perform powerful combos with flashy animations.
  • Seven Varied Classes – choose from a Warrior, Blader, Wizard, Force Archer, Force Shielder, Force Blader, and Gladiator.
  • K-Rock Background Music – listen to the game’s soundtrack by Korean band Novasonic in the game's own music player.

Cabal Online Screenshots

Cabal Online Featured Video

Classes

Cabal Online Classes

  • Warrior - melee sword users with the highest vitality. They use powerful two handed swords and possess a variety of buffs to boost their own strength and those of their allies.
  • Blader - a swift melee class that dual wields Katanas and Blades. Bladers are equipped with light armor and rely on high evasion, accuracy, and speed to take down foes.
  • Wizard - the standard spell caster. Wizards use a power called Force to cast elemental magic. Wizards suffer from low defense but possess powerful AoE and crowd control spells.
  • Force Archer - a variation on the Wizard that manipulates Force power to create an Astral Bow and attack enemies from a distance. They are more focused on single target damage.
  • Force Shielder - similar to the Force Archer, this class uses Force power to create an Astral Shield. Shielders have the highest defense and are the main tanks in Cabal.
  • Force Blader - a hybrid class combining the playstyle of a mage and swordsman. Besides attacking with magic enhanced sword skills, Force Bladers have access to a variety of curses, debuffs, and other debilitating skills.
  • Gladiator - the latest class in Cabal Online. A powerful melee fighter equipped with dual chakram weapons and heavy armor. Gladiators use Rage as well as SP to cast their skills.

Full Review

Cabal Online Review

By Marc Marasigan

Cabal Online is a free-to-play 3D fantasy MMORPG set in the mythical world of Navareth. Players take on the role of heroes on a quest to prevent evil forces from taking over their world. The world was nearly destroyed by the ambitions of a group of powerful men known as the CABAL almost a thousand years ago. The game’s graphics are a bit dated, which is to be expected of a game more than a decade old. The flashy animations are good but probably won’t impress anyone who’s played any modern MMORPGs. Also, the maps tend to be a bit small since the game was made to run on older PCs. Most of the maps can be crossed end to end in about a minute or so. The game’s sound effects may sound a bit generic but the background music is one of the game’s selling points. The game’s soundtrack is performed by Korean band Novasonic which sounds good especially if you’re into K-Rock. Oh, and did I mention that the game comes with its own music player?

Heroes Arise

Before setting off in the hostile world of Navareth, players must first create their characters. For a fantasy game, Cabal Online’s character creation screen is a bit science fiction-ish and reminds me of the character creation screen in RF Online. Creating characters is a simple matter of choosing from one of seven classes and deciding on their face shape, hairstyle, and haircolor. Customization options are fairly limited. This was the norm for Asian-made MMORPGs back in the day when they weren’t too focused on character customization like they are now (specifically Black Desert Online, Archeage, and Blade and Soul).

Starting Your Journey

Players begin their journey in different starting zones depending on their choice of class. Force Archers and Force Bladers start off in a zone named Green Despair, the base of the Nevareth colony; Wizards and Bladers in the aptly-named Desert Scream; Warriors and Force shielders in the frigid mining areas of Bloody Ice—grim-sounding names if you ask me. Regardless of where players start, they still have to go through the newbie quests along with pop-up boxes designed to help familiarize them with the game’s basics, such as how to equip items or how to attack mobs. Unfortunately, there’s no way of skipping these starting quests. They do, however, reward players with items and equipment that can prove useful in the early stages of the game.

The Daily Grind

Cabal Online plays and feels like any other MMORPG released around a decade ago. Players take on kill and collect quests from local NPCs which eventually lead them to the next area. These quests reward players with experience points, gold, and equipment that they can use to keep up with the tougher mobs found in succeeding areas. The process is repeated until the player eventually reaches the end-game. The problem with classic MMORPGs, Cabal Online included, is that they tend to be a lot more repetitive and grindy as compared to more modern MMORPG’s, which have been moving away from the proverbial breadcrumb quest system.

Progressing through Cabal Online is fairly fast-paced, which is good considering the game’s ridiculously high level cap (200). Every level rewards players with 5 stat points which they can freely distribute between three stats: STR, INT, and DEX. Not much room for diversity with only three stats to choose from but that’s fairly common in older MMORPGs where the typical build is usually the best one. Skills, on the other hand, are ranked up with constant use, much like the PT system in RF Online. Getting skills to elite levels, however, requires a whole lot of grinding. Each rank up also rewards players with permanent stat bonuses. Higher ranked skills, however, aren’t nearly as important in PvE as they are in PvP where having higher ranked skills almost always results in a victory.

Racking ‘Em Up

What sets Cabal Online from other MMORPGs of its time is its innovative combo system. The game was one of the first games to successfully implement a combo system. Racking up combos not only looks cool but also temporarily rewards players with buffs and increased damage. Chaining attacks, however, requires near perfect timing and a certain degree of skill which should eventually become second-nature as you progress through the game.

Doing Time

Cabal is a PvP-heavy game that uses PvE content, except for the end-game dungeon raids, as a means to get players to the end-game and beat each other silly in duels, nation wars, and persistent PvP servers, where any player can attack or be attacked by another player as soon as they step out of the relatively few safe zones. But killing other players doesn’t come without consequences, unless the other player attacks you first. PK’ers will not be able to talk to NPC’s for a certain amount of time. They’ll also automatically be sent to jail on their fifth PK which requires the offending player to spend time in a maze that’s almost impossible to escape from. Logging out or switching to an alt isn’t an option since players need to be on the offending character for the timer to run. The only other way out is if you’re lucky enough to find one of the rare Warp Points out of the maze.

Aside from PK-ing, players can also participate in Nation Wars once they’ve reached level 52 and completed the required quest. Nation Wars are held several times a day and sees participating players fighting it out to take control of the enemy base, capturing key locations guarded by powerful guardians in the process. The first nation to capture the enemy's base wins the war. Members of the winning nation who participated in the war are rewarded with special items that they can use or sell in NPC shops for a large sum of Alz, the in-game currency.

Cash Shop

There’s been some considerable discussion as to whether Cabal Online is pay-to-win or not. The game is more pay-for-a-huge-advantage-now than it is pay-to-win mainly because it’s entirely possible to play through the game and compete with paying players without spending a dime, since all cash shop items can also be bought with Alz… eventually. It just takes a lot more time, a lot more patience, and a heck of a lot more grinding.

The Final Verdict – Good

I played Cabal Online back in its heyday and actually liked it. I have nothing against the game and die-hard fans will probably hate me for this but, frankly speaking, the game just can't compare with more modern MMORPGs that have vastly improved on Cabal Online's key features. These features would have been considered ground-breaking when it first came out more than a decade ago. The game's grindy gameplay, common with classic MMORPGs, will only appeal to a select group of players, most of which are sticking around for a sense of nostalgia. That being said, Cabal Online is a solid game in its own right and worth trying out.

Screenshots

Cabal Online Screenshots

Videos

Cabal Online Videos

System Requirements

Cabal Online Requirements

Minimum Requirements:

Operating System: Windows XP SP 3 or newer
CPU: Intel Pentium 4 2.0 GHz
RAM: 1 GB
Video Card: Nvidia GeForce 6 series / ATI Radeon 9800 PRO
Hard Disk Space: 3.5 GB available space

Recommended Requirements:

Operating System: Windows 7 / 8 / 8.1
CPU: Intel Pentium 4 3.0 GHz or better
RAM: 2 GB RAM or more
Video Card: Nvidia GeForce 7 series / ATI Radeon HD or better
Hard Disk Space:  4 GB available space

Music

Cabal Online Music & Soundtrack

Additional Info

Cabal Online Additional Information

Developer: ESTsoft
Publisher(s): ESTsoft, Gamemaxx, AsiaSoft, Moliyo, E-Games, Nival Network.

Release Dates:

Korea: October 2005 (ESTsoft)
Europe: September 2006 (ESTsoft)
Brazil: August 2007 (Gamemaxx)
North America: February 2008 (ESTsoft)
South East Asia: March 2008 (AsiaSoft)
China: January 2008 (Moliyo)
Philippines: June 2008 (E-Games)
Russia: September 2010 (Nival Network)

Steam Greenlight Date: October 2, 2013

Development History / Background:

Cabal Online was first published in South Korea in October 2005 and was one of the first Korean MMORPGs to spread to the West during the free-to-play wave of the mid 2000s.The game was first brought to North America by OGPlanet on February 28, 2008, but the publisher's license was not renewed and the game shut down on March 31, 2010. The developer, ESTsoft, has since stepped in and relaunched Cabal Online in many territories including North America on its own.

Cabal Online was submitted to Steam Greenlight on July 11, 2013 and approved within months. The game was finally released through Steam on February 17, 2016 amid mostly positive reviews from old fans of the game.

  • John M

    Truly a classic. Will be labeled as "Generic" by most, and in most way it is, but I'll always hold Cabal Online close to my heart. Played this for a good few months hardcore, but now I'm just looking forward to Cabal 2.

  • metalsnake27

    Generic setting?..... maybe at first, but, once you get into areas like Fort Ruina and what not, with all the mechs and stuff 😛

    CABAL is still my favorite F2P MMORPG of all time. The combat is still fast paced and fun as heck. It's a bit of an oldie, but still holds up quite well.

    If you haven't played it, try it to level 100 at least, only takes about a week of not even hardcore play.

    Not to mention: The soundtrack is amazing. (At least if your into techno-rock/metal music)

    • Cabal Online was one of the first free to play MMORPGs I played and I totally agree that the soundtrack is amazing.

      I liked the fact that even at the beginning the game sent you between multiple maps, but the fantasy setting was still pretty generic.

  • HikuMAtsune

    The music in this game is fantastic!

  • Jan Vrhovec

    Rly nice game, but sadly cancer developer/publisher with shittyest costumer support ever ! Also 2017 Jan situations is: random perma ban, items missing and so on while nobody rly check support ticket and you only get copy paste anwser and also worth tho mention that while those random perma bans are going on Hackers are rulling Cabal EU and its game economy