NDA drop & WAR Reviews

Because AoC sucks.

Moderator: pooka-Mishipeshu

User avatar
pooka-Mishipeshu
Guild Member
Guild Member
Posts: 1212
Joined: Thu Feb 16, 2006 11:48 pm

NDA drop & WAR Reviews

Unread post by pooka-Mishipeshu » Wed Aug 20, 2008 6:44 am

This guy got into the Closed Beta late but I find his blog to be a nice read. One has to keep in mind though that he didn't get to level the chars very far and that some char's seeming powerfulness gets balanced out as they level.

Blog: http://waaagh.wordpress.com/

Here's the Q&A he posted. He's also working on his impression of each class. Engineer is the only one he's done so far though.

Question 1: Was it fun?

Answer: Definitely. I think I put myself through a semi-unfun process by forcing myself to repeat the beginning content 20 times in a row instead of really leveling up a character, but that’s my decision for reasons not yet known to me. Anyway, WAR? Fun. Giggles of black humor, awe at the little touches, giddyness that it handles “right”, joy at weird Tome unlocks, and plenty of “holy CRAP!” moments when the game decides it wants to knock me out of my chair. I think I had the most fun, initially at least, doing Public Quests. Those are quite repeatable and much more enjoyable than solo questing.

Question 2: What irritated you?

The biggest irritation was the immediate clash of heightened expectations and actual game reality. Listen, it’s a terrific game, no doubt, but you, me, many people have bought into the hype that we’ve built WAR up to be the be-all, end-all of gaming existence. It isn’t. That’s not knocking it, but when a starting zone is considerably different than what you’d been dreaming about for months, or when the PQ loot roll works against you, or when you discover that the same mixture of wonderful human beings and ganking slimeballs from other titles exist here… well, it’s a bit of cold water in the face. Best to take it, sputter, and move on.

Question 3: What makes this game different?

As always, it’s a mixture of the BIG and the (little) features that set a title apart. The BIG stuff — like Public Quests, which, if there’s the population to support it, provide some of the most truly impressive, most unique MMO experiences I’ve had yet — get a lot of the press. But the (little) stuff matters to, and WAR does strike away from the pack in many ways that have yet to be championed. Like how a lot of the armor isn’t just retextured skin, but actual bumpy pieces of armor that goes over your character’s frame… or the cool little “killing spree” mechanism that activates if you start slaughtering stuff fast enough… or how the world seems full of crazy, chaotic scripted events that often have no greater purpose than to tell a story or give flavor.

The biggest difference is that, from level 1 to 40, you always have a slew of options at your fingertips for advancement and fun. It doesn’t look like you’re going to be forced into dungeon grinding or PvP ladders just to get the gear or advancement you crave — there are many paths to the same end.

Question 4: What makes this game the same?

It’s the same auto attack + special skills hit via hotkey that most every MMO sports. It’s hard to get around that because it’s what works when you consider the complexity and latency of the genre’s titles. A lot of people are going to say “Orcs? Dwarfs? Elves? We’ve seen these races before!” And they’d be right — we have. The fantasy MMO genre is hardly underpopulated at this point, and since so many other titles borrowed heavily from Warhammer’s 25 year legacy, it’s almost as if we’ve come full circle to where it looks like WAR is ripping other titles off for having ripped Warhammer off in the first place.

Question 5: Did you try anything nuts?

I played a PQ entirely naked to get a Tome unlock. I felt free to jump off high cliffs and explore weird places just to see what I could find. I was less than cautious at times and would end up training about 20 mobs behind me as I fled for my life. But it’s too early to really craft those epic tales of mayhem and mischief that are to come.

Question 6: What is the core of the game like?

Quite war-ry. Mythic’s lived up to their promise that “WAR is everywhere!” in this title — there’s scarcely a patch of land that isn’t under attack or part of a PQ or up for grabs by the enemy. It’s not as clean and neat as you might like; it’s messy and sometimes chaotic and perhaps bewildering. But it’s a boatload of fun, for sure.

Question 7: What do you think the biggest issues are going to be?

Class balance and population balance will fight for #1 and #2, for sure. There’s no getting around the enormity of balancing 20 classes for a PvP-centric title — people might be a bit mollified by the newness of it all at first, but within a month or less, we’re going to hear a lot of folks screaming about how class X is overpowered, class Y has a broken “I Win!” button, and class Z is almost extinct due to uselessness. It’s hard to predict where these troublespots will flare up, but I’m wincing already at the thought.

From my perspective, if Mythic can’t pull off the massive RvR battles without loads of people lagging and crashing out, it’s going to backfire on them just as hard as AoC did on Funcom. We’re talking dozens and dozens of characters clashing, spell casting and zipping through their hotbars like they are expert pianists. I’m going to remain dubious until I witness one of these battles lag- and crash-free.

Question 8: What wasn’t there?

A worldwide chat channel that people could use, and the sense of large-scale community. This might be because in beta, people tend to be a bit isolated or contained within guilds, but nobody ever seemed to talk. Tactile feedback on some of the skills you activate repeatedly felt sluggish or nonexistent, and I’m still struggling with that (the two separate cooldowns — global and skill-specific — tend to clash a lot). Any sense of a tutorial, although things are pretty easy to understand.

Question 9: So what was the beta experience like?

Overall, very good, very positive. I didn’t overplay it, but after the first week, I ended up with a patch that made the game so stable that I never crashed out unless I was in a huge RvR match. Even as a somewhat hesitant PvPer, there’s a ton in here to entice me and fill my hours with, and I really liked just trying out all the classes to figure out which one I’m going to stick with.

Question 10: Did you find any good bugs?

Actually, I did! I found one nasty bug that caused me to fall through the world on my very first night in beta (not a good sign!). Later on, I had read that one of the Tome unlocks comes from doing an entire PQ, start to finish, butt-naked. So I stripped my goblin shaman, did an entire 20-minute PQ… and all for nothing. No Tome unlock, which was confirmed to be bugged.
Last edited by pooka-Mishipeshu on Wed Aug 20, 2008 8:00 am, edited 1 time in total.
Image

User avatar
pooka-Mishipeshu
Guild Member
Guild Member
Posts: 1212
Joined: Thu Feb 16, 2006 11:48 pm

Re: NDA drop & WAR Reviews

Unread post by pooka-Mishipeshu » Wed Aug 20, 2008 7:35 am

Last edited by pooka-Mishipeshu on Fri Aug 22, 2008 10:46 am, edited 2 times in total.
Image

User avatar
tyen
Guild Member
Guild Member
Posts: 3219
Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2005 10:24 am
Location: Denver, CO.

Re: NDA drop & WAR Reviews

Unread post by tyen » Fri Aug 22, 2008 10:21 am

Thanks for the notes!

I look forward to more :D

One comment: On question 7 - I'd say if you're not expecting some lag at the start, your expectations are too high. WoW is a fine example. AoC had it. I played SWG too, and that absolutely had it. And from what I can tell from reading, this game is most like SWG in terms of the kind of detail that can cause lag (all the special armors you mentioned as example).

User avatar
Hodd
Guild Member
Guild Member
Posts: 1917
Joined: Sat Feb 26, 2005 6:25 pm
Contact:

Re: NDA drop & WAR Reviews

Unread post by Hodd » Fri Aug 22, 2008 4:30 pm

i wanan hear some RD quick reviews
RD's carebear

User avatar
pooka-Mishipeshu
Guild Member
Guild Member
Posts: 1212
Joined: Thu Feb 16, 2006 11:48 pm

Re: NDA drop & WAR Reviews

Unread post by pooka-Mishipeshu » Sun Aug 24, 2008 1:04 am

Hodd wrote:i wanan hear some RD quick reviews


So far, in my 1.5 days I'm having more fun playing this than I did in the Wow Beta. I love the public quests and that you can level your char through pvp, and that you can pvp as of level 1. Oh and I also love the intelligent loot system. So far I like all the characters I've tried -each one is just really different and has different strengths & weaknesses. I can't wait until launch or OB when I will see what the end game is like because everyone in game says its even more fun.

Things I don't like so far: how far I have to run to get anywhere and how few flight masters there are. and how there often isn't a rally point (hearthstone) near a flight master. Crafting also seems kind of annoying and not all that developed -I can't tell if it's even useful yet.
Image

User avatar
deecon
Guild Officer
Guild Officer
Posts: 702
Joined: Sat Aug 04, 2007 12:54 pm

Re: NDA drop & WAR Reviews

Unread post by deecon » Sun Aug 24, 2008 4:21 am

pooka-Mishipeshu wrote:
Hodd wrote:i wanan hear some RD quick reviews


So far, in my 1.5 days I'm having more fun playing this than I did in the Wow Beta. I love the public quests and that you can level your char through pvp, and that you can pvp as of level 1. Oh and I also love the intelligent loot system. So far I like all the characters I've tried -each one is just really different and has different strengths & weaknesses. I can't wait until launch or OB when I will see what the end game is like because everyone in game says its even more fun.

Things I don't like so far: how far I have to run to get anywhere and how few flight masters there are. and how there often isn't a rally point (hearthstone) near a flight master. Crafting also seems kind of annoying and not all that developed -I can't tell if it's even useful yet.



you get a mount at 20, and its alot better then being confined to a small zone :-p
Image

User avatar
Hodd
Guild Member
Guild Member
Posts: 1917
Joined: Sat Feb 26, 2005 6:25 pm
Contact:

Re: NDA drop & WAR Reviews

Unread post by Hodd » Sun Aug 24, 2008 9:58 am

i am sure they can add more flight masters like in WoW... i remeber there used to not be near as many
RD's carebear

Post Reply