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Horizons: Empire of Istaria - PC

by Atari
Windows 98 / Me / XP
3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews) 72 / 100

List Price: $29.99
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  • Massively multiplayer online role-playing game
  • Adventure through dynamic quests as a dwarf, elf, gnome, fiend--even a dragon
  • Dynamic world enables you to explore an ever-changing frontier and create custom strongholds
  • Open-ended skill system allows you to switch character roles
  • Note: this online game requires a monthly fee payable by credit card

Product Details

  • Domestic Shipping: Item can be shipped within U.S.
  • International Shipping: This item can be shipped to select countries outside of the U.S. Learn More
  • ASIN: B00009MGU9
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 6 x 1.2 inches ; 8 ounces
  • Media: Video Game
  • Release Date: December 9, 2003
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #53,454 in Video Games (See Top 100 in Video Games)

Product Description

Product Description

Horizons: Empires Of Istaria is a world of legend and lore, where the next generation of online role-playing begins. Tales of the ancient world come to life as you forge a life for yourself in this unique, interactive online world. Many challenges are waiting in the untamed frontiers of Horizons -- from facing legion of undead to simply finding your place in a community. Create a vision for yourself in a new world!

From the Manufacturer

Horizons is the next-generation online,epic adventure. You can meet tens of thousands of people and explore the seamless world of Istaria with beautiful vistas, incredible geology and diverse environments. You are able to take on many different traditional fantasy roles; Humans, Elves, Dwarves, Fiends and Dragons are just some of the choices.

Your character can be further personalized by choosing to be male or female, fat, muscular, thin, young or old. At any moment you can choose to pursue wealth as a prospector or get paid for building communities where your friends create, buy and sell the thousands of items that are available in the world. You can learn powerful magic that can be used to fight, heal or grow, become adept at fighting or spend time chatting with your friends.

Horizons delivers an unparalleled experience to online players. Never before has an online product delivered so many opportunities for exploration, growth, friendships and creation. You can explore new lands and settle property. You can then develop the property in cooperation with other players to contain homes, gardens, stores, schools and many other improvements that give you a way of expressing your will in the world of Istaria. The combat action in Horizons expresses a cinematic quality through the wide variety of attacks, throws and feints. Exciting animations carefully choreographed show a spectacle of precision action and reaction battle.

The world within Horizons will continue to expand to provide you with the chance to discover and explore new lands, where new adventures and new opportunities await. The lure of the new frontier will entice players to leave the mostly tame, settled lands to search out new territory and make new friends. Artifact Entertainment has created powerful world editing tools that allow our creative talent to constantly build new content for the world, and insert that content while our servers remain live. You are able to play in the world while Artifact Entertainment sets up the next live event or details the undiscovered continent.

Customer Questions & Answers

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Lots of potential - still unfinished December 15, 2003
By A Customer
I've got the game this weekend. Installed, setup account, created a Lizard cleric, no problems. Web interface (idea) is real bad. Also IE takes a lot of memory so I suggest you close the IE while the game engine is loading. (Still it may take a few minutes until XP drops the IE libraries)
The good:
- Graphics, visuals, even in such low detail level (for good performance) Istaria looks amazing.
- Sound, best music for MMORPG by far.
- Tradeskills are OK (better than other MMORPGs)
- Fighting is fun, got some skills to use and make a difference
- Can really be unique with so many races available and then so many features that can be customized (height, head shape, etc)
- Can actually multiclass and it really works.
- No exp penalty on death, no corpse runs to get gear (allows you to take risks and have more fun)
The bad:
- The web interface login.
- not enough servers for the demand.
- Loading times are ridiculous if server is highly populated
- Gathering resources for TSkills is difficult cause so many ppl doing the same (if same place).
- Unless someone is selling what you want (spell or gear) you cannot buy it.
- Not enough information anywhere about the schools and skills, didn't even know Druid was a choice from start until read about it somewhere.
- It seems to have several bugs including very nasty memory leaks (game gets real slow after a while)
- Casters are not working very well ATM
- Warrior types always take Cleric to lvl10 for heals
- NO PETS in game, huge drawback for me
- Huge BUG when abilities go grey for no apparent reason thus becoming unavailable until you log (loggin in takes quite some time).
- Lacking dungeons which I think are great fun.

Can be the real next generation MMORPG if several issues are addressed (I'm sure all problems will be fixed eventually).
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Definately the mixed bag... December 6, 2003
By A Customer
Horizons, as you might have guessed from the posts here, is a jumbled bag of many different attributes, both good and bad. I'll try to cover much of each, in as fair and objective manner as possible.
As a beta tester since September, with a top of the line rig, the graphics engine is a memory hog, with major loss of frames per second in a scene drawn of any complexity. While some spell effects are indeed quite nicely done, other graphics, such as characters themselves, are rather lack luster at best. The world environment itself is drawn quite well, with but just a few unrealistic detractions that pop up every so often. Combat animation is very reasonable, while casting animations (seperate from the actual drawn spell effect) can be quite repetative.
Races are many, but their variety is mostly in their looks. While there are differing "stats" per race, the amount of that difference very quickly proves inconsequential after 10 levels. Races also have abilities, some of which are quite potent, and lends some viability to the different races, while others are lackluster at best.
The exception here is dragons. The dragon race is uniquely done in comparison to the other races, with the promised ability to fly once becoming of age. Dragons are the only race with aging (three progressive steps), have their own classed (one each for adventuring and crafting) with its quest based advancement system, and a hoard which needs attention to keep a dragon viable in combat and effects the aging process. However enticing a Dragon seems from the start, however, they are weak when young, are significantly more difficult to play and level with, and sadly, have very few options for "distinguishing" themselves from other dragons, other than by looks alone.
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64 of 81 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just About Everything You Wanted in a MMORPG September 22, 2003
True, the MMORPG scene is very very crowded. So, why Horizons?
I can't do this game justice in the allowed 1000 words, but here are some of the (publicly-available) highlights:
- EVERYTHING in the game can be crafted. Start with the necessary weapons, armor, tools. Add structures, communities, castles, machines, bridges, portals, hedges, statues, etc. etc.
- CHARACTER GROWTH - Not locked into any "job". Change schools to advance different skills. MANY different schools, including "prestige" schools with prerequisites for membership. No level caps! Tons of skills.
- MAKE A DIFFERENCE in the world - Help reclaim lands from the enemy. Free subjugated races (so they add to the nine playable races available at launch). Build houses & communities. Build "empire structures" and "artifacts" that help your community or everyone.
- HIGHLY DETAILED CRAFTING SYSTEM - Wow! Obtain formulas, acquire the proper skills, harvest over 100 different types of resources, (Wood, sap, flax, essence, carrots, iron, silver, wheat...) Obtain the proper tools, Use the proper machinery, make the item. Enhance the item. Now sell it, consign it, build with it, trade it, etc.
- CHALLENGING REAL-TIME COMBAT - Not just "click and wait until the random-number generator decides on a victor". Learn special combat skills and use them at the proper time in combat.
- STUNNING VISUALS - Real weather. Layered textures. Fluid cloth motion. Spellcasters can create jaw-dropping weather affects seen by all players. Player-dragons can take flight to reach floating cities. Huge surface world with areas in the sky and below ground. Hundreds of animations per player race.
- AMAZING SOUND - Rich cinematic score. Impressive sound effects. Combat, race, and town-specific scores.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars LOL awesome game, forgot I bought it here
LOL awesome game, forgot I bought it here. Still after all these years a very unique and cool game. Read more
Published 1 month ago by James P. Long
5.0 out of 5 stars Istaria - Enter the REAL WORLD
First off there are 28 Adventure classes to be played and if you want to you can do all of them. Each class you do will help your character as many of the skills obtained are... Read more
Published 6 months ago by MMORPG Player
4.0 out of 5 stars Well Worth Trying, especially if you Craft or you would like to Play a...
this is available online for download, however for $2 it seems worth getting the disk and instructions. Read more
Published 8 months ago by J Godwin
3.0 out of 5 stars This game is now DOWNLOAD ONLY!
I really like this game, but I would not recommend buying this product as the game is now DOWNLOAD ONLY. Read more
Published on April 26, 2011 by Superdude097
4.0 out of 5 stars player review
I have played this game for 18 months and can highly recommend it to any gamer who is both mature and prefers a PvE game play. I will not go into detail... Read more
Published on March 17, 2008 by aine faireheart
4.0 out of 5 stars Nice MMO that was ahead of its time
I have recently downloaded this game. Must say I rather like it over most of the newer stuff that has been released. Read more
Published on November 10, 2007 by Jason J
5.0 out of 5 stars Not for all, great for some, perfect for a few.
I've played Horizons from beta to the present. I am retired, and have been able to devote a good deal of time to the game. After a rocky start, it has steadily improved. Read more
Published on October 1, 2005 by Kulamata
4.0 out of 5 stars Becoming a finished game!
Every day I play I see this game becoming more and more finished - since the last reviews especially! Read more
Published on September 21, 2005 by Renee Lecompte
3.0 out of 5 stars Getting better
I've played this game on and off for a while now, and I can say that it is getting better. Most of the issues past reviewers have complained about have been fixed, and content is... Read more
Published on January 1, 2005 by Steve Delong
4.0 out of 5 stars An interesting way to waste your time
Out of all the games out in 2003, I think I enjoyed this one the best. The graphics were pleasing, there was plenty of content, and a great community feeling. Read more
Published on December 29, 2004 by Rue
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