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Reader Comments (25)

Posted: Jul 6th 2009 2:12PM (Unverified) said

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Aion's making itself out to be the Kotex of MMOs.

Posted: Jul 6th 2009 3:48PM Thac0 said

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I don't get it... -_-
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Posted: Jul 6th 2009 4:08PM (Unverified) said

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It's the MMO... with wings!! :)
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Posted: Jul 6th 2009 4:38PM Thac0 said

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i get it now, sorry i wasn't up on my feminine hygiene pads
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Posted: Jul 6th 2009 3:03PM Anatidae said

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Aion is pretty, but the gameplay is just a lot of the same.

I am interested in the PvP, but I am concerned that it is going to be a system where the person with the best gear wins - which means the person who has the most time to grind wins.

I love MMOs and I really like PvP MMOs. WAR has been fun, but the biggest problem I have with most MMOs is the leveling system. It just serves to keep players and friends separated as my new character can't group up with my high level friends. In other PvP games (FPS, RTS, etc...) advancement is handled through unlocks and such, but not with levels allowing even the newbie player to have a chance to kill a vet. A headshot is a headshot.

So, I expect Aoin PvP to be a letdown. Wings won't change that one bit. My hopes are on the skill-based and somewhat sandbox MMOs on the horizon. Especially the idea of getting away from the overall level idea. There are plenty of other ways to reward and advance without making it one number which divides players.

Posted: Jul 6th 2009 3:40PM (Unverified) said

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I just got finished with the beta and I had a blast. Very polished. Fun quests. Great looking gear and the wings add a whole new aspect to the gameplay. It doesn't break the MMO mold but it's still a solid fun game. I'll be picking it up at release.
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Posted: Jul 7th 2009 4:34AM CunningB said

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A game with no gear, no levels just killing is more or less an FPS with a story.

Remove the leveling and character development is removing the RPG, it is one of the defining factors of the genre.

Global Agenda is the closet to an up coming fps/rpg hybrid that i can think of coming up but even that will most likely end up level and gear dependant.

In fact not having leveling or gear would just make the current generation of MMORPG's pointless, as whats the point in questing if you get no tangable reward, yes the difference could be "toned down" but if you do that too much people complain theirs not enough difference and uniqueness in game.

If your looking for something like this then its TF2 all the way but i cant see a way that MMORPGs would work with out this kind of progression!

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Posted: Jul 6th 2009 4:54PM Anatidae said

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CunningB, I am not against rewards. And I disagree with your reasoning almost 100%.

A FPS is a "First Person Shooter" which does not exclude it from also being a RPG, or "Role Playing Game" - where, going by the English language, one is playing a "Role" in the game setting. We come to think of these roles as avatars that advance, unlike many non-RPG FPS games were you don't advance you avatar but just kill or be killed.

Regardless of the first-person or third-person perspective, I do not believe (in any way) that a traditional level system or loot is required for avatar advancement or fun rewards for completing quests. In fact, going back in time as far as Ultima Online provided a game where rewards came and went, yet there was always a feel of role-playing in that game. More-so than almost every MMO that has been launched since. In UO, I could create a new character and adventure in the world with someone who is a three time Grandmaster, and still be of aid. I might miss more when attacking creatures, but it was not like I was unable to do anything.

The idea of levels is a device used to keep players in an "open" gameworld limited to the areas that the developer wants the player to stay in. Otherwise, you would just jump to the end and finish the game. So a level is created to allow you the illusion of full freedom while putting a leash on your avatar.

Do you think that WoW would be hurt in the slightest if people could just create instant level 80 characters? Nope. Not at all. These days the game starts at 80. The only use for a player to level up a character is to enjoy the storylines created by the developers. But even Blizzard is bored of their stories and they provide multiple ways to race past their old content. Being a newbie in WoW is a lonely experience compared to the first few months of release.

The fact is, it takes a fraction of time to reach the level-cap in level based games compared to the length of time the developer wishes you to keep playing. Unlike a single player game where the developer would like to keep you engaged just long enough to buy the sequel, the MMO developer wants your subscription and therefore has to keep you engaged for months or years. To this end, the game gets most of the focus put on on the "end-game".

With that in mind, a PvP centric MMO *should* have an awesome "end-game" and, well, skipping the level crap which only serves to leash players in their areas would allow more development time on the end game and end game rewards while allowing players an easier time to find groups/teams to join the fight.

I don't think that a newly created character should be superior to someone who has played for years, but I do think that 80% of that should be based on the player's skill and 20% of that on in-game rewards, unlocks, and other progression. Yet, I think if the newbie gets that critical hit (lets call it a headshot), then the vet can still drop.

Removing the big level (I don't mind micro levels such as faction and rep grinds for rewards) helps friends play together faster. It offers a chance to build content that is always valid (like what WoW is now doing with instances, offering various modes to visit them again in a harder mode that matches your level). It lets developers focus on end-game balancing instead of having to worry about X number of levels of balancing. And soo many more things.

I maintain that the leveling system is not good for MMOs. Rewards are great, just not the big level ding. I really hope that the skill-based MMOs coming out soon will be well built and show, as it did in the days of Ultima Online, that MMOs can be a blast sans-level.
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Posted: Jul 6th 2009 3:37PM (Unverified) said

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"It seems like no matter where we turn, the buzz lately has been on Aion."

Statements like this are why I'm getting closer and closer to taking Massively off of my bookmarks. The buzz has been on Aion because the staff of Massively has put it there. I'm not saying that Aion will or will not be a good game; I have no idea what it will be. But to say that there's a buzz just because you are talking about it is shallow at best and dishonest at worst.

Posted: Jul 6th 2009 3:37PM myr said

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You guys DO realize that NCSoft lifted the NDA already, right?

Posted: Jul 6th 2009 4:05PM JohnD212 said

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Aion is so much better than I expected. I was having so much fun this weekend...almost cried when it ended. The game runs like a dream and looks stunning. I was trying out Vanguard a little before Aion and I couldn't uninstall Vanguard faster....I have like 70 screen shots from Aion...just so hard to play and not take pictures of everything.

Posted: Jul 6th 2009 4:12PM Tom in VA said

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"Do the wings make it better?"

I really have to say no, just no. They look terrible and ridiculous in every screenshot and video I've seen of them thus far.

They are a total and complete negative for me.

Posted: Jul 6th 2009 5:53PM Graill440 said

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Tom, i had that observation also, flying is convienient and needed as some quests are "up there", it is also entertaining to fly to max altitude and dismiss the wings and watch your avatar plummeting, flailing in the air and popping the wings like a parachute at the last possible moment, but do it once and it aint fun anymore.

Hopefully they will make flying open and non restricted areawise, right now your restricted in many many altitudes and zones, cant fly here etc, bs like that.
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Posted: Jul 6th 2009 4:25PM Cirocco said

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I've pre-ordered the game. I didn't expect World of Warcraft to re-invent the MMO diku genre when it launched after Everquest, and I don't expect Aion too. I want a casual fun entertainment, and Aion delivers. The impressive fluid graphics and character models, engaging unique world and lore, enthralling music and sound effects, and eye-candy combat elevate this polished game to a solid gold purchase for me. The future MMOs that pique my interest are The Old Republic, Final Fantasy XIV, APB, and NCSoft's Blade and Souls.

Posted: Jul 7th 2009 8:10PM (Unverified) said

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Seems to me most of the players who have tried the betas are giving very favourable feedback.

Come on guys, if you don't know it - don't bash it. A lot of the bashers here are ignorant, prejudicial fools.

Posted: Jul 6th 2009 5:13PM Triskelion said

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Only knock on this game is the fact that, lets face it, there is really only one race. Other then that I have very few complaints.

I haven't played an MMO in recent history that had me wondering; what is around that corner? There is a feeling of wanting to explore every nook in this world that I haven't felt in a long time, and the zones seem to flow together, unlike in WoW where you go from Hellfire Penn to Zangarmarsh, etc. it felt every fragmented, but in Aion it feels like every bush and tree was created with love.

Posted: Jul 6th 2009 5:44PM Graill440 said

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Massively, you DO realize how binding in a court an electronic NDA is? Let alone the all the clauses that can be simply "reexplained". That aside, how would you release a screen shot from someone under NDA telling you they werent under NDA, and where did they get it? You see the futility in any NDA that is physically unsigned and noterized for record.

Now since i am not under NDA, nor did anything Aion cross my computer, and since i still played the beta, (this would be that someone else story) here are my views in AION.

It is different, flying is handy though needs to be opened up, the constant read haze cloud preventing me from flying everywhere was bs. Restrict flying and there is no point to having it. The flight timer is a great idea for obvious reasons, though i feel the cant use timer once flight is used up needs to be longer, a penalty such as faceplanting the ground at high speed is needed for those who do not plan ahead or watch warnings.

Pve is challenging, i used this persons assasin, combat two or three levels above can be a death sentence if you not a tank or healer. That said, healers do not need to be tanks because of healing.

Back to the assasin, very weak, the openers crit way less than advertised and the combos are very low damage even with decent gear and stones, get another mob of equal or lower level and you will be sucking down potions to try and survive (i did say challenging) get one a level or more higher, you had better run.

The first special move using dp points was a joke, a decent amount of time to gather the 2000 points needed to activate this and when i used it........i was like, well now, that sucked. Very dissapointing, very low damage for what it is supposed to be, though the animation is great, its like a flashbulb, its bright but does no damage. Suprise, stealth, first strike, nothing described about the assasin was observed, once in a long long while i would get a good opener, otherwise it was small basic damage and more often than not i was taking potions to survive equal level mobs. I was using the best quest gear available in the lines i was following.

Some red mobs you can take, dont get me wrong, as an assasin i needed a huge healingpotion, a heal over time potion and luck. i was able to kill a few mau 4 levels over me, most destroyed me, even with potions. Openers and combos were used everytime, food was also used as it gives small bumps in stats for a short time.

Pvp. I did ok against equal levels and those a couple over me....as long as i got the openers, healers are futility to kill, maybe with higher skills, but at 13 they arent worth the time and they will perma heal and kill you. tanks, a death sentence, even with openers, again, maybe poisons would help later on, other assasins and mages are cake IF you get the opener, mages will decimate you from range. Face to face with anything is death for an assasin due to low damage, not this high damage opener they describe in the text. Never got a chance to fly in the arena for combat as i was killed before i could, openers in arial combat are going to be interesting as the low burst damage will probably get you killed. It was like you got a dice roll along with your opener to see whether you got your crit damage for that opener, more often than not you dont.

Quests: tons of quests some confusing at first until you are oriented to the game, nice to use if you want locators for npc and items, nice addition.
quests are red for a reason, though a couple i was able to "use assasin skills" to get around certain things others would not.

Gold spammers were in the beta, nuff said. Another major annoyance was the market PIPS, they sit on their chairs and fill the air with noise and unwanted harping, the plaza in pandemonium needed to nuked, it was like a mobile ah that could talk, all your worst fears animated. have a strong computer or you will go framedead as you muck your way through the ignorant masses of PIPS.

Graphics are on par with the latest out there, turn everything up for a truly visual feast.

I will note i did not encounter one broken quest (though some needed slightly better explanations) nor did i find myself bugged or see in chat, anyone complain of a bug, it was like a regular day in a game, no complaints in open chat. I was curious when the woman touted this "polished" game for beta, looks like someone did their job, this is the first beta i have observed from a spectator point of view and then getting to play that hasnt been ate up from the getgo, they could release this today if the rest of the game is as "polished". I might even subscribe......



Posted: Jul 6th 2009 6:33PM Cendres said

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There's no NDA FYI.

No gold spammers either, what you saw were personal shops, annoying as all hell granted but not gold farmers..
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Posted: Jul 6th 2009 6:50PM agitatedandroid said

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NDA or not, is there anything about this game people didn't already know?

As for the wings making it better? No, not really. They barely make the game different much less better. I had been highly excited about this game prior to my playing it. Now that I have played, I really couldn't be less interested.

Aion is pretty. That's about all I can say for it.

A few knocks against it, for me:

1. Combat looks fast paced but that's all. It isn't anymore action packed than any other MMO where you just stand toe to toe with the mob watching cool-downs.

2. You're nearly a god but you never learned to swim?

3. The attitudes of the NPCs just puts me off. It might be a cultural thing or a translation thing but some of what I read from the NPCs if I heard said to me in real life would result in someone walking away with a bloody lip.

I in no way felt like helping these arrogant asses. Also, the worshipful attitude of the non-winged folk towards the winged folk and the feeling of the winged folk that they deserved this holier than thou position in society just rubs my humble bones the wrong way.

4. Don't get me started on the complete bollocks that is Game Guard. Apparently easily circumvented by cheaters anyway so all that is left is the honest player who can't use his 100$ mouse as intended cause the drivers are blocked and can't look up on the web why that is because Google Chrome is blocked. That's just entirely unacceptable.

So, no, the wings don't make it better.

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