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Zenonia S: Rifts in Time

Zenonia S: Rifts in Time is an online action RPG on mobile devices with anime-inspired graphics, fast-paced action combat, many stages to fight through, 5 different classes, asynchronous PVP, and co-op Boss Raids. Zenonia S is the sixth installment in the Zenonia series with a focus on online features.

Publisher: GAMEVIL
Playerbase: High
Type: Mobile RPG
Release Date: November 3, 2015
Pros: +Cute graphics. +Action combat. +Easy to pick up and play. +Co-op Boss Raids.
Cons: -Repetitive gameplay. –Some pay-to-win aspects.

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Overview

Zenonia S: Rifts in Time Overview

Zenonia S: Rifts in Time is a 2D hack-and-slash action RPG developed by GAMEVIL, the popular publisher behind Kritika: The White Knights and Dragon Blaze. Choose one of 5 unique classes and experience an engaging storyline as you fight for justice in the Celestial Kingdom. Defeat foes in familiar 2D action combat, a trademark of the Zenonia series. Battle through 9 different realms in the Story mode or team up with players around the world to take down powerful bosses in Boss Raid. Test your skills in the Fairy Tower and Monster Wave modes and earn great rewards. Collect hundreds of pieces of equipment, customize your stat and skill build, and enhance your equipment to make them more powerful. Join the online world of Zenonia today.

Zenonia S: Rifts in Time Features:

  • Stage-based Levels – Fight through hundreds of stages with many different environments, monsters, and bosses.
  • Cute 2D Graphics – Immerse yourself with cute chibi graphics and varied environments containing both adorable and frightening monsters and bosses.
  • Fluid, Action Combat – Defeat hundreds of different monsters and bosses with smooth, hack-and-slash combat with the ability to dash and use skills.
  • Five Classes to Choose From – Play as a Slasher, Ranger, Fighter, Magician, or Assassin who all vary in combat, abilities, and playstyle.
  • Story and Questing – Experience a storyline full of character dialogue with interesting NPCs and character development embedded into the game’s questing system.
  • PVP, Co-op, and Additional Modes – Compete against other players in asynchronous battles in the Arena, take down powerful bosses in 4-player Boss Raids, or survive in the Fairy Tower and Monster Wave modes.

Zenonia S: Rifts in Time Screenshots

Zenonia S: Rifts in Time Featured Video

Full Review

Zenonia S: Rifts in Time Review

By, Herman Y.

Zenonia S: Rifts in Time is a free-to-play, 2D online action RPG developed and published by GAMEVIL, the mobile game developer behind the popular Zenonia game series as well as several esteemed mobile games including Kritika: The White Knights and Dragon Blaze. Zenonia S was first released in Korea under the name 제노니아 온라인 for Kakao in 2013 and after several months of closed beta testing in early 2015, the global version was finally released on November 3, 2015 and gathered almost 500,000 downloads one week after its release, making it one of the fastest growing mobile games. Unlike the previous Zenonia games, however, Zenonia S is an online game rather than a single-player game. It trades its free roam exploration and captivating storylines for stage-based combat, online co-op, and PVP. While the game features a solid combat system and active, online community, the changes in its core gameplay turns it into just another generic Korean RPG in the mobile marketplace.

Character Creation and Classes
When players begin, they can choose between one of five classes: Slasher, Ranger, Fighter, Magician, and Assassin. Players of the previous Zenonia games will recognize the characters behind each class although the story is completely different. Slashers are two-handed sword wielding warriors balanced in attack and defense, Rangers are dual pistol-wielding gunners with quick, long ranged attacks but low defense and difficult skill control, Fighters are close-ranged brawlers with the highest health and defense but lowest attack, Magicians are long ranged sorcerers with powerful AOE spells but low defense and survivability, and Assassins are stealthy rogues armed with chain scythes and poison abilities with high damage but low survivability. Each class has unique playstyles, abilities, and builds (via equipment, stats, and skills) and some are recommended only for intermediate and advanced players. All classes are useful in battle and undergo the same story and quests as each other. The large number of classes makes for great replay value and variety in the co-op mode.

A Stage-Based Zenonia
The Zenonia series (prior to Zenonia S) were most known and praised for creating captivating single-player experiences with a storyline and semi-open world to explore. Zenonia S, however, went in a different direction, and the open world was replaced by multiple instanced stages spread out upon several maps, much like in most other mobile RPGs. There is a persistent town where players can run around and look through their menus such as inventory, skills, and more, but otherwise, seeing other players in town doesn’t really serve any purpose. The various stages are all instanced and can only be solo’d, so although the game was meant to be online, players cannot play through the main campaign with others. This is unfortunate because the Korean version of Zenonia S actually has co-op for every stage in the game, but it was removed in the global version. There are, however, Boss Raids that players can play co-op with others in, which will be discussed later in this review.

Each map (currently 9 maps total) has 10 stages and each stage consists of 3 zones, with a boss battle in the third zone. Each zone is full of monsters running around and players must defeat all the monsters in each zone in order to move onto the next zone. Although each stage is fairly short, lasting from 2-5 minutes, each zone still has a decent amount of monsters to fight and the boss battle will takes up a good amount of time. Each stage has a unique boss with special attacks and abilities, and a ton of health. The boss is also surrounded by several monsters looking to get in the player’s way. The boss battles are fairly interesting and get a lot more difficult later on, although they can also be very annoying due to a game mechanic that causes bosses to constantly run away from players which prolongs the battle. Like most Korean mobile RPGs, Zenonia S also has an “Auto” feature that allows players’ characters to automatically attack and play though the levels on their own which helps speed up the grinding and farming process at the price of losing player interaction.

2D Action Combat
Zenonia S features hack-and-slash action combat similar to that of the previous Zenonia titles. Players have an overhead view of their character and can move around with a virtual joystick and attack by either tapping or holding onto the action button. There are also skills to use, which have to be used strategically because mana runs out quickly and does not replenish on its own. Players can also dash by double tapping a certain direction (with no cooldown) which is useful for dodging enemy attacks and skills. Players can attack multiple enemies at once if the enemies are within the attack range and although attacks knock enemies slightly back, they can still attack the player while they are getting hit, meaning they cannot be stun-locked. Bosses cannot be knocked back at all, although bosses do not actually attack much other than to unleash skills every now and then. Overall, the combat is very fluid and action-oriented but can get fairly repetitive since each stage is very similar and there isn’t much variation in combat strategies. There is also, of course, the “Auto” feature which not only allows the game to play itself, but also speeds up the game which helps to battle and fuel the repetitiveness at the same time.

Questing and Story
Zenonia S features a lengthy storyline embedded into its questing system. There is essentially a quest for every stage in the game that involves character dialogue before and after its completion. The dialogue is usually short and conversational, but is somewhat interesting and humorous with a main plot revolving around character development and evil plots against the Celestial Kingdom. The player’s character starts off as selfish and arrogant foreigner who gradually evolves into a noble hero which really adds a sense of emotional connection to the game. The quests, however, are mainly fetch quests that involve killing a certain number of monsters or collecting items in the various stages. Although the story is somewhat interesting, it is isn’t nearly as good as the storylines in the previous Zenonia titles (Zenonia 1-5) but it is better than nothing at all.

Enter the Arena
Zenonia’s PVP system takes place in the Arena where players can fight against other players online in asynchronous combat (opponents are AI-controlled). Players do have full control over their characters in battle, although the “Auto” combat option can be used, which is sometimes more efficient than manually controlling the battle themselves. However, the PVP is not very balanced in terms of match-making and players are given a choice of three opponents to face at random. Players rise in the rankings when they win and the rewards are based on the player’s ranking at the end of the season. The rewards vary for the rankings “Top 0.1%, 0.5%, 1%, 5%, 10%, 20%, 50%, and Bottom 50%” with better rewards at the higher positions. It’s a slightly odd system since players have to wait a long time before they receive their PVP rewards but the ranking system offers a competitive aspect to the game.

Boss Raids, Fairy Tower, and Monster Wave
In addition to the main Story mode, there are three additional modes which include Boss Raids, Fairy Tower, and Monster Wave. Boss Raid is a co-op Boss battle mode and is probably the most fun mode in the game. Boss Raid features a large variety of powerful bosses to fight against (for different levels) and players can team up with 3 other players online to take them down. Players can choose to invite friends or auto-party with strangers and then work together to take down a powerful boss which can give great rewards such as rare equipment and Stones (for equipment socketing). Unfortunately, players can only participate in Raids for a limited amount of times each day and it is the only co-op mode in the game. Fairy Tower is a survival mode in which players fight through floors of a tower with increasingly difficult enemies on each floor. Players can obtain better rewards the higher they go and tower progression is limited by player’s level and equipment. Last, Monster Wave is similar to Fairy Tower except instead of advancing up floors, players have to hold their ground against endlessly spawning enemies to see how long they can survive. All three modes can only be attempted a limited amount of times each day and each of them give out gold, experience, and useful materials.

Cash Shop/In-App Purchases (IAP)
The in-app purchases in Zenonis S are largely based off of the well-known Gacha system seen in many mobile RPGs. With Zen (premium currency), players can summon random weapons, armor, and accessories between ranks B-S (with a guaranteed A rank item if they summon 10 at once), random Stones between the ranks B-S (with the same bonus for summoning 10), Avatar costumes that provide minor stat boosts, in-game gold, and random Fairies between the ranks B-S. With in-game gold, players can only summon equipment, Gems, and Fairies between the ranks of D-B. Players can also purchase energy and stage revives with Zen. Additionally, there is a VIP system with multiple tiers for purchasing Zen which gives free in-game gold, free summons per day, and more energy for stages and PVP. Overall, the in-app purchases offer advantages to paying players largely due to better equipment, but players can still obtain the best equipment via enhancing and “tiering up” which requires a lot of farming but can be done without spending any cash. The in-app purchases will, however, offer quick advantages to help players dominate in both the Story stages and PVP.

Final Verdict – Good
Zenonia S is a decent but unfortunately generic online mobile RPG with action combat, cute graphics, and stage-based progression. The series trades away its trademark free-roaming and engaging story-telling for a more casual experience with online aspects that will appeal to hardcore Zenonia fans and casual players but ultimately takes a step backwards from the previous Zenonia titles.

Screenshots

Zenonia S: Rifts in Time Screenshots

Videos

Zenonia S: Rifts in Time Videos

System Requirements

Zenonia S: Rifts in Time System Requirements

Minimum Requirements:

Android 2.3 and up / iOS 6.0 or later

Music

Zenonia S: Rifts in Time Music & Soundtrack

Additional Information

Zenonia S: Rifts in Time Additional Information

Developer: GAMEVIL
Publisher: GAMEVIL
Platforms: Android, iOS
Release Date: November 3, 2015

Zenonia S: The Rifts in Time was developed and published by GAMEVIL, a large Korea-based mobile game publisher behind the Zenonia game series and Kritika: The White Knights. Zenonia S was first released in Korea under the name 제노니아 온라인 for Kakao in 2013 and after several months of closed beta testing in early 2015, the global version was released on November 3, 2015 and gathered almost 500,000 downloads one week after its release, making it one of the fastest growing mobile games. GAMEVIL is also the publisher of the popular mobile games, Darkness Reborn, Million Arthur, and Dragon Blaze.