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Mu Online

“Who are you guys?” I asked the developers of Mu Online, one of the several Asian based online RPG developers that were showcasing their titles on the E3 floor. The booth was fairly flashy, but it wasn’t over-bearing and they allowed gamers to see the showcased game unfettered from ridiculous cinematic sequences. Despite my familiarity with the MMORPG industry, I was fairly surprised by the answers I received from the developers of Mu Online and their position in the international market.

Described as a Diablo-style 3D isometric MMO, the world of Mu is typical fantasy MMORPG-fare: an island that was the home of civilization sinks after thousands and thousands of years of imperial ruling, the game takes place at the time just before the sinking of the island. You control a character in that world, and your goal is to develop your character so you can defend yourself and advance yourself where you need to.

Mu Online stands apart from the crowd mainly by focusing on its popularity. Mu had actually piqued my interest on Tuesday, when I noticed people walking around with “MU MMORPG” emblazoned bags and blow-up balls. Besides not knowing what Mu Online was, I wanted to know who had the cash to give out so much free loot to the gamers. I quickly found out why.

Mu Online is one of the most popular MMORPG’s on the global market right now, if not the most popular world-wide MMO. According to their press release, 32 million Chinese players alone play Mu Online and over 40 million players worldwide. This number is outstanding, but I don’t feel like, at the moment, Mu Online could be converted into a popular game in the United States.

Mu Online, at this point, seems like a complete copy of Diablo II. Players in the United States already enjoy and play Diablo II extensively, and I doubt many characters would convert over to a game that is so thoroughly like a game they already play. However, if Diablo II gamers could be enticed to look into something fresh, they may consider Mu Online.

Mu Online at a Glance

  • Platform(s): PC
  • Genre: RPG
  • Developer: Webzen Inc
  • Publisher: K2 Network