Dive Into Facebook’s Most Hardcore RPG Yet In Treasure Abyss
A common criticism “core” gamers level at Facebook games is that they are fundamentally unchallenging. Beyond the threat of your crops withering, there’s no way to fail. Instead you can only be set back somewhat. Whoever designed Namco Bandai’s Treasure Abyss seems to have taken these complaints to heart, because this is one of the very few Facebook games in which you can die and have to start over. You can also easily end up in situations where you can’t really make any progress until you convince a friend to join you in the game.
Treasure Abyss is patterned after the old Wizardry-style RPGs that Japan fell in love with roughly twenty-five years ago, leading to a console games industry dominated by fantasy RPGs where you form a party, equip them with cool stuff, and send them into dungeons to slay monsters and find treasure. Where a console game would let you create and control all four of your party members, Treasure Abyss is more social. You can only create one character for your party. If you want more adventurers, you need to convince some friends to join you in the game. Your max party size is four, so you want at least three friends to help you out.
The dungeons are balanced around the expectation that you’ll have a party adventuring with you. If you try to tackle them solo, you’ll find yourself dying a lot. You might think, “Well, can’t I just spend some money to buy really good equipment?” This is one of the few Facebook games where you can’t possibly buy your way to victory. Treasure Abyss does sell real-money items, but only convenience items like a candle (that lets you explore longer), a dungeon flag (that lets you start a dungeon from the flag instead of the entrance), and health potions to revive your party.
Actual equipment can only be fused from items you find in the dungeon or purchased using gold coins. You can’t spend real money on gold coins, you have to earn coins by exploring dungeons and killing monsters. Equipping different items changes your class, but you can only purchase gear for your current class. So unless you find components and fuse an item that makes you a Monk or Ninja in the dungeon, you’re very likely to be stuck as a Warrior. You can attempt to grind for better money, experience, and items in Treasure Abyss, but it’s pointless until you have a full party.
Treasure Abyss is actually quite a bit of fun to play, if you have any appetite for dungeon-crawling RPGs. It has richer graphics than you typically see in Facebook games, with all of your battles and the dungeon exploration fully-animated. This all makes it a bit frustrating that if you can’t get people to join the game with you, it’s nearly impossible to make any progress. This may change in a future update to the game, but it seems a bit unlikely. Instead, just wait until you’ve got at least three friends willing to add you before you get started with Treasure Abyss.