Editorial MMO

Istaria: A Game for Dragon Lovers

We have World of Warcraft, where you can turn into a dragon as a mount, but not many people know about Istaria.

Istaria is a fantasy game with handcrafted swords, magic spells, and dungeons, not in the way we might expect, though. The main purpose of the game is to build a community, build your lair/plot, and have the choices you make influence the story. Building structures, lairs, and plots around the world are permanent changes. All players may see these, but not all players may just walk in to use your things you might have in your "home" (though you can allow someone to visit your home). You build your home, world, and do what you you to be the land's protector. The game allows players to be adventurers, crafters, or both, featuring a struggle between the "living races" (including the players) and "The Withered Aegis", an army of the undead seeking to destroy all life.

Istaria was released in 2003 under the original name Horizons: Empires of Istaria through Artifact Entertainment, though the games "owners" have not stopped there. Tulga Games, LLC, acquired the game and all rights to it in 2005 and sold them a year later in 2006 to EI Interactive, Virtrium, LLC who was the original developer (even though Istaria was originally published by Artifact Entertainment)  acquired all rights to Istaria in 2007. The game has since remained a Virtrium game to this day, but its name was changed to Istaria: Chronicles of the Gifted (more popularly shortened to Istaria).

Hatchling Dragon
Hatchling Dragon,

Istaria is the only MMORPG to date that you can play as a Dragon. You start out as a hatchling and have to work through the levels. There are three different ages for the dragons: Hatchling, Adult, Ancient. Once you meet certain requirements, dragons may do the Rite of Passage to ascend into being an adult, gaining the ability to fly.  In order to be able to do the Rite of Passage, dragons must have a minimum of:

  • Dragon Adventurer level 30 ( This does not mean you should start the quest at adventure level 30. In fact the community recommends that you wait until at least adventure level 50. )
  • 15 days old
  • Dragon Crafter level 20
    • 300 Smelting, Transmutation, Stoneworking and Scalecraft skill for Lunus (Reached at a minimum of 30 DRCA + scales)
    • 450 Spellcraft skill for Helian (Reached at a minimum of 40 DRCA + scales)
  • 250,000 Dragon Hoard
    • 350,000 Dragon Hoard for Helian


The game's graphics aren't all that great and is probably the biggest downfall. However, there are other things the game has going for it;

  1. Dragons
  2. Crafting System
  3. You can choose your own payment option. Keep in mind that you are very limited choosing to play for free. If you choose to play for free, characters can't be played beyond level 15 until you choose a payment option.
  4. Roleplayer-Friendly. You can purchase lairs and plots, depending on your subscription plan.
  5. Gathering System (for your crafting school. They don't call them professions, but that's essentially what it is).
  6. Character Training: This is essentially a talent tree, just under a different name.
  7. Character Creation

Dragon Character Creation

While yet simple in design and graphics wise, the game is quite complex in gameplay and challenging to learn, making it a perfect game for Dragon Lovers who want that challenge, like many WoW players request. The game is free to download and free to play up to level 15. We recommend you "fly" on over to their website and at least check out the game! It is definitely a perfect game for dragon lovers. Have you ever checked out Istaria or played it? If not, Have you ever heard of it? Let us know your thoughts on this game if you have checked it out, we'd love to hear your opinion. Join in the conversation in the comments below or talk to us on Facebook, Twitter, or on our forums!

About the author

Catherine Brody

34 years old, with a passion for playing video games., My primary video games are World of warcraft & The Sims 4, but I enjoy trying out new games, my husband is a disabled vet. Been married for 10 years, have 3 children, 4 cats, 1 dog, I live in Hampton, VA attended DeVry University for a bachelor's degree in Multimedia Design & Development with a focus in Graphic Arts & design