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Huge Steam MMO is finally playable, beta coming soon

Albion Online, a fantasy MMORPG boasting over five million players, is finally adding a European (EMEA) server after seven years of waiting.

Huge Steam MMO is finally playable, beta coming soon: A hooded figure with long white hair and glowing red eyes earing green armor with golden trims sits on a throne smiling menacingly

Albion Online is, in fact, massive. With millions of players across America and Asia, Sandbox Interactive’s absolutely gorgeous fantasy MMORPG throws tropes to the wind, dropping the idea of set classes and, instead, allowing items and gear to dictate your abilities. After seven years of roaring success, the game is finally getting a shiny new European server, with a beta on the cards, too – so if you, like me, are eager to get involved, now’s the time.

At the moment, trying to play Albion Online in Europe is a pretty arduous task. As someone who is based in Glasgow, Scotland, and has attempted to dive in several times, the lag is completely unbearable, and it gets to the stage of ‘ragequit and uninstall the game’ very quickly.

And it’s such a shame, because Sandbox Interactive’s MMO has so much promise. As I said before, there are no set classes, the economy is entirely player-driven (almost everything is craftable), and you can participate in everything from smaller PvP tournaments to full-blown wars. As someone who adores World of Warcraft and Final Fantasy 14, Albion Online is everything I want and more – and now I can finally have it.

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Albion Online will add a new European server, encompassing the entire EMEA region, on Monday April 29. Sandbox notes that this will ensure “faster connection speeds, better ping and lower latency, and optimized in-game event times for players across the region.” Note that the server will be completely fresh; all territory will start off neutral – and is, therefore, ripe for the taking.

Additionally, a closed beta test for ‘Albion Europe,’ the server’s official title, will begin on Wednesday April 3, with an open beta set to follow on Wednesday April 10. If you’re lucky enough to get on the beta without a Founder’s Pack, you’ll also net an exclusive vanity skin.

Speaking of Founder’s Packs, picking one up doesn’t just get you into the beta: it nets you an exclusive mount skin and let you progress at triple the normal speed, too. You’ll also be given five days early access to the server, and a range of different vanity skins themed around light and dark (pictured below). I know what ones I want.

Huge Steam MMO is finally playable, beta coming soon: An image of fantasy characters standing looking at one another, the picture split down the middle to indicate dark and light

I really didn’t need yet another MMO to sink my time into, but honestly, I’ve been wanting to play Albion Online for ages. I really can’t wait to dive in and give it a go after all this time.

In the meantime, though, if you love the MMORPG time sink, we have a list of some other free MMORPGs that you can play while you wait. Or, if you love high fantasy but can’t commit to something as huge as Albion Online, we have a rundown of all the best fantasy games, too.

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