Aura Kingdoms is a 3D Anime MMORPG published by Aeria Games. In 2014 I played the Open Beta, but didn't proceed to live because of I didn't think it was worth a subscription fee. Later it became free to play so I decided to jump back in to see how the game changed.
Population is way down. I hardly saw anyone in the starter zones and it wasn't until i hit the mid-50s before I saw the first sign of life in the largest town in the game.
There is an unofficial private server for this game that has more people playing it than the live service. Partially because the publishers manage to run the game into the ground by overcharging cosmetics and on other quality of life mechanisms in the game.
Basically the publishers are killing their own game, whether it is intentional or not. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Five Years Later
The game has not changed at all.
Without the EXP booster I would have gotten bored in a few days.
I started with the Sorceror - which was the class I already had made prior. I hit level 40ish and then realised the Spearman might be a better fit for me personally, so I remade a character from scratch.
It took me about half the time it took on the Sorceror. The Spearman has more AOE instant-combo attacks, where as the Sorceror has higher overall damage for single target opponents.
The biggest problem i found coming into the game so late was the economy. The developers have done NOTHING to fix inflation so there is very little you can afford on the auction house to get that next bit of gear needed for a harder dungeon or boss.
I attempted to do some fishing to sell 'gold & platinum fish' but that could only hold my interest for so long before I got bored as well. Five gold for a fish isn't too bad, but it probably took part in skewing the player economy in the first place.
What game didn't try to make a buck off ingame cosmetics? Whilst it looked pretty I was never going to grind the gold to wear one of these store-bought items.
It was fun for a few weeks, but i probably won't be going back.