Updated Thu, Jul 07, 2011 by Stow
The heart of the gameplay isn’t bad. You pick one of four classes, and then a God which determines a special power line and eventually what mythical beasts you command.
Command, you say? Yes, this game actually has you controlling squads of minions in most zones, with your capacity and variety rising as you level. These squad members fufill all of the class roles in the game, and making soloing an absolute joke in all but the most intense, too-damn-high-level situations. With healers, tanks, and damage at your fingertips, who you actually roll as your main really doesn’t matter all that much, so the game just feels like a breeze as you quest.
Not exactly your average quest giver. What's up Minerva?
Quests are abundant and generally fall in a good direction, pushing you through new areas and mobs at a steady pace. The quest tracker is solid and you’ll never be left wondering where your objectives are. Unfortunately, some of the quests in this game just have too much goddamn running. I’ve run from Freeport to Qeynos before back in the day, and one quest had me doing that stretch in just one city. Imagine yourself running literally 20 legs of fetch quest around a capital city, all with no means of speeding up your character. Ugh.
The game just feels like it needs more polish or time, despite having been in the making off and on since 2005. What the hell is going on in my chat window?
One super important thing to note is that the ‘hell curve’ of leveling takes hold incredibly early. Around level 7-10, you’ll see experience points from quests actually fall for some God forsaken reason.
It looks like WoW and plays like WoW with AI teammates, albeit with some pacing issues, so it’s hard to fault entirely when it was modeled in the image of the industry leader.
The graphics depend entirely on what you’re looking at. Characters are okay looking, even at max settings, and once you start getting armor that actually looks like armor, the heavy mail classes actually look pretty good compared to the random design of the Tiers of WoW. That’s not to say the graphics for characters are good, but the art design for the armor is quite well done.
The environments are a mixed bag. Nature and foliage is abundant and full of all kinds of things to look at, but the moment you get around buildings, most of them are just flat white textures. Yeah, I guess that was the design motif of the time, but, holy crap, does it look ugly and terrible.