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Reader Comments (7)

Posted: Jun 5th 2010 3:31PM (Unverified) said

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I tried this game FOREVER ago and found it, well, I hated it. Like you said, finding how to do anything was really difficult. When I played the game had very few players, I'm surprised it's still kicking.

Posted: Jun 5th 2010 3:58PM (Unverified) said

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I read this game's forum some time ago, it seems the game's owners sell 'trading bots licenses' for 200 dollars per year.

Kinda made me wonder if the game is a joke or what..

Posted: Jun 5th 2010 4:59PM (Unverified) said

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I played Eternal lands several years ago and loved the highly active global chat. I stopped playing for a bit and then found myself moving on.
A few weeks back I suggested the game to Beau then downloaded it again myself. (and then had to go to a funeral and missed the play times)
It hurts me to say but I have to agree with Beau on this one.

The graphics, website and controls are the same as they were 4-5 years ago. The only differences are the new tutorial quest line that more or less walks you through all of the skills and the fact that 90% of the players seem to have been replaced by bots.

Posted: Jun 5th 2010 5:31PM (Unverified) said

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Howdy Beau. Sorry I couldn't join you last night in EL, but I was on a cross-country flight. I was there for the Tuesday meeting but couldn't find you.

Anyway, my thoughts: Polish, polish, polish. I wanted to like the game, and there were some aspects that I did like. For example, the perks that you can choose - some are positive and take up your "pick points" (which are used for advancing stats, etc.) and others are negative and give you additional points for coping with a handicap.

But it's just way too clunky and hard to play. Moving around is click-to-move only, which I'm not a big fan of, but even worse is that it's done poorly. In Mabinogi I can hold down the right mouse button to move the camera, and hold the left mouse button while I drag the mouse and my character follows it. That's not my favorite movement scheme, but it's pretty intuitive and it works. But here, holding down and moving the mouse will not move you - only clicking on one spot. Sometimes the character walks briefly in the wrong direction before the pathfinding determines where you should go. You can't control the camera with the mouse, only the arrow keys, which is atrocious.

Clicking on a monster that you are too far away from gives a "You are too far away. Move closer" message instead of just making you walk up to it. This makes targeting small mobs an absolute nightmare, since not only do you have to click directly on them but also move close enough to them first, all while they are running around all over the place.

Harvesting and crafting were nothing special, but not bad either. I'm getting pretty bored with the click-and-wait to harvest/craft systems and have some better ideas in mind, but no points off for that since it's the industry standard. The magic system of requiring different sigils (permanent items that you purchase) was interesting - I would have liked to see a more freeform combination of sigils. This may be possible but I didn't find anything on it during my travels.

I completed almost all of the tutorial missions (and there's quite a few). It may be an okay f2p title if you like open skill based games. But personally, it's so hard to actually play the game that I'd rather just stick with something like Darkfall for now and wait to see what kind of systems future developers come up with.

Posted: Jun 5th 2010 6:50PM Bhagpuss said

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It's got one of the weirdest EULAs I've ever seen, too. It manages not to take itself seriously enough AND to take itself far too seriously all at the same time.

I played through the tutorial last Sunday morning and enjoyed it. (I also got stuck in the rat cave but eventually managed to find my way out). The text in the tutorial suffers from exactly the same problem as the EULA. I wonder if the whole game has that "breaking the fourth wall" vibe?

My log-out-and-don't-log-back-in point came when I got the boat from tutorial island to the mainland. I landed and started to wander about looking for the NPC I'd been sent to meet and suddenly *BAM* I was dead. Somethign hit me and two-shotted me and I was back on the tutorial island. I never saw if it was a mob or a player (I don't even know if the game is PvP at that point) and I couldn't find a combat log to check back.

If this was 2002 and MMOs were thin on the ground I might persevere, but there are just too many options nowadays to stick with EL. I'm leaving it on my HD for now, though. I might tak e another look sometime.

Posted: Jun 6th 2010 12:29PM cericks said

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Craft of Gods only sends me to the bluescreen when it starts loading... :'(

Posted: Jul 17th 2010 2:10AM (Unverified) said

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A few notes about EL in the landscape of MMO's...

Any MMO contains a learning curve. I am a high ranked player in EL, and decided to give WoW a try. As expected, the graphics and interface were better, but the chat system is not as good. The review missed the mark here. If you played for such a short time you likely never joined a guild or utilized the marketplace and invasions channel, and you have options to use tabbed chat and a number of related options that make the chat very usable.

Comparing EL to a game like Runes of Magic is perhaps better, since Runes is also free to play. Runes is much better in a lot of ways, yet for a new player it (like WoW) feels like you are being forced down a funnel into a pre-scripted story line, rather than the open system of EL. While Runes has the dual class system and ability to change classes, EL is not just blessed with the ability to do anything or be anything (many MMO's offer that), but there is no class system whatsoever. You train skills rather than classes. The way you build your character using pick points and attributes ultimately determines how good you can be at anything, but it is possible to be a fighter/ranger/mage/crafter or potioning summoner tailor, or engineering mage ranger, or whatever combination you want. You just have to train it.

The player's response to getting killed immediately after leaving the tutorial island is pretty lame. An actual game player would open his on screen encyclopedia, click "maps" and read about the land he was going to. Chances are he went to White Stone at night, and a quick look at the encyclopedia reveals that White Stone has gargoyles out at night - not new player friendly, but gargoyles don't go to the dock areas and you can go to other maps from there without any danger. When I play a game and die, I generally wonder what I did to cause my death. If you ask that question, most of the time you will find an answer. Die from garg at map where they wander around at night...lesson learned. Avoid that map at night until you can kill gargs (a few weeks for a brand new player - a few days or less for a good or advanced player).

EL is not the most polished game in the world. It certainly has its flaws, the largest of which the reviewer did not play long enough to experience. What it does have is a smallish user base (a few thousand regular players I would guess) that is extremely friendly and helpful for the most part. There are evil players, but very few. The community aspect of the game is what keeps me playing. It certainly isn't for everyone, but it is free and once you get into it, quite fun at times.

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