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Aion Shaping Up For US Launch

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the gives-you-wings dept.

Role Playing (Games) 212

One of the most promising MMORPGs in development these days is NCSoft's Aion, a fantasy-based offering built on CryEngine. It makes heavy use of flight as a gameplay mechanic, allowing aerial combat and easy travel around the visually stunning game world. There are four basic classes — Warrior, Priest, Mage, and Scout — each of which have two subclasses. For example, Warriors can be tank-like Templars, or berserker-like Gladiators, while Mages can turn into a scholarly Sorcerer or command the elements as a Spiritmaster. Early previews of Aion almost universally comment on how polished the game seems — this is partly due to the fact that it has been up and running since November in South Korea. "Being stable, scalable, reliable and fuss-free is far from a given in MMOs, but Aion is all those things, and can already stand alongside the genre's usability kings, EVE Online and World of Warcraft. Its expansive, zone-free open-world environments look terrific and run smoothly on a wide variety of systems. It just works." Since the game is already in a relatively complete state, NCSoft has been running closed beta "events," where a portion of the game is opened for testing. MMOGamer has a write-up from the latest such event. Aion is due out in September.

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Aion. (0)

StickansT (1585125) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693489)

Its a very beautiful game but does any one not thing it is going to keep up with EVE and or WoW?

Re:Aion. (1)

StickansT (1585125) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693527)

thing

think*

Re:Aion. (2, Insightful)

oneirophrenos (1500619) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693601)

Very beautiful? You'd think a game powered by CryEngine would produce scenes far more beautiful than what the video shows. WoW doesn't even lose to those graphics, IMHO.

Re:Aion. (1)

Tridus (79566) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694181)

The video doesn't do it justice. I play WoW on its maxed out settings and played the last beta Aion event. Aion looks a whole lot better.

I don't think it plays particularly better, but I didn't get that far into it.

Re:Aion. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28693645)

Maybe, there's no WoW in China at the moment, they've been really pushing it there and it seems to pay off.

Re:Aion. (1)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693863)

For an asian game, it's definitely raising the bar on visual and gameplay quality. That doesn't mean it's a leader.

As far as having a lasting impact vs Eve and Warcraft, no, it doesn't. Not even on the heels of Warhammer. People in the beta have said the game has no more potential as an endgame than wow does except that the game isn't that polished endgame wise yet.

Re:Aion. (3, Interesting)

pixelpusher220 (529617) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694317)

as a long time WoW player and mostly casual player at that...WoW is going to go quietly into the night. Not from this or any other game, but from itself. It probably has 1 maybe 2 more expansions left before it's all pretty much done.

Once the top levels reach 100, we're going to have > +500 stat bonuses for plain blue items! Just starts to border on ridiculousness to me.

unless Blizz can find some way to resolve the inherent inflation in game stats with every expansion, some things will be interesting but more and more it will be just a rehash of past instances and game play. Wintergrasp was an interesting expansion of BG's but by itself wouldn't be enough to keep me interested.

Re:Aion. (1)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694539)

I was a wow player (hardcore on us dark iron before I swapped servers and later quit), tried aion, tried warhammer, playing eve, tried almost every mmo under the sun including free asian ones, sco (not the company), flyff, shattered galaxy, planetside, lineage, atlantica, a wide gamut of styles. The only major mmo ones I skipped were D&D online and hardcore EQ1.

I agree that wow is heading to burnout. With that to say, the word I intend to add is "thankfully". The game was a game-changer at first, but now it's just gimmick. I wonder how much activision had to do with that.

Re:Aion. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28694931)

as a long time WoW player and mostly casual player at that...WoW is going to go quietly into the night. Not from this or any other game, but from itself. It probably has 1 maybe 2 more expansions left before it's all pretty much done.

Once the top levels reach 100, we're going to have > +500 stat bonuses for plain blue items! Just starts to border on ridiculousness to me.

unless Blizz can find some way to resolve the inherent inflation in game stats with every expansion, some things will be interesting but more and more it will be just a rehash of past instances and game play. Wintergrasp was an interesting expansion of BG's but by itself wouldn't be enough to keep me interested.

Pixelpusher, you EXACTLY read my mind regarding WoW. The silly amount of stat bonuses that Blizzard has been adding to items only showed that they had NO plan for the future of the franchise, hence the need to keep adding 10 levels to every expansion. Dark Age of Camelot was out for years without ever needing to increase the max level (in addition to other MMO's)

Re:Aion. (0, Redundant)

0xdeadbeef (28836) | more than 5 years ago | (#28695101)

WoW is going to go quietly into the night.

No, it will have two more expansions (80-90, 90-100), and end with the death of Sargeras.

The marketing for their new MMORPG will begin in earnest right around the time the raiding guilds can kill him.

Blizz loves milking their cash cows, but they also understand how to keep their audience clamoring for more.

Re:Aion. (1)

Fozzyuw (950608) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694433)

For an asian game, it's definitely raising the bar on visual and gameplay quality.

Hmm... the graphics look a lot like every other Korean MMO. This photo-realistic anime-esque like art style, akin to Final Fantasy art. I personally think that's "good thing"(tm) since I like that art style, and it's certainly a good thing because it's semi-fresh to the "western" market. Though, Sword of the New World and other MMO's that have penetrated the Western market have just as beautiful and similar art styles and very good animation to boot. It's not all just beautiful backgrounds, like LotRO is.

Gameplay? I've not heard anything about the gameplay yet. I'm still waiting for the next beta, since I just missed the last one. But I'm going to be very skeptical about it being anything close to WoW's gameplay. Regardless of how "cool" it looks and seems, how it plays is an entirely different ballgame. I would like to hear how "casual" friend it is compared to WoW. Korean MMO's are notorious for grind-mills and micro-transactions. This one claims to be more "western" friendly with tons of quests and such, but I'll have to see it to believe it.

Regardless, I'm looking forward too it. But I also scoff at the system requirements. The summary makes is sounds like it's as requirement friendly as WoW, but that's hardly the case when you look at the system requirements. I looks like my rig will be making the near minimum. Admittedly, my computer is a couple years old, but pure gaming machine.

Re:Aion. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28695139)

My (admittedly very limited) experience is that it's about where WoW was at release, in terms of gameplay. That is, there are a lot of quests where you have to kill mob X, say a Fluffy Bunny. Fluffy Bunnies spawn amidst Scruffy Bunnies and Floppy Bunnies, but only the fluffy ones count. Once you run back to the quest giver to turn it in, you'll get a second quest to go back and kill the scruffy ones. Rinse and repeat for the floppy bunnies.

WoW's been pretty good about eliminating this kind of needless tedium in newer content and having quests that guide the player through the content sanely, instead of having you run back and forth like a madman. My impression of Aion is that they haven't learned anything from improvements in MMO design over the past 5 or so years. I don't see it having much appeal outside of the initial newness and shiny graphics, but YMMV.

Re:Aion. (1)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 5 years ago | (#28695175)

I really only meant with PVP as far as gameplay, sorry I definitely didn't make that clear. Outside of that, it's basically lineage with newer graphics. Many people have indeed said the animations are impressive but I didn't pay much attention.

Played the Chinese and Korean versions... (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28694037)

The graphics are decent but it's a really boring game until you get a high level character for PVP. The leveling process is a long linear grind with quests that are even more monotonous than those found in WoW. If you play for PVE, World of Warcraft, Everquest 2, LOTRO and a variety of other MMORPGs are vastly superior in terms of quality and quantity of content.

The PVP available at level 25+ is quite fun, but your performance is primarily determined by your level and equipment. If I could start a PVP character at a reasonably high level with half decent gear I'd probably buy it. Unfortunately, to get to the fun part of the game, you have to spend hundreds of hours doing tedious PVE quests and/or grinding mobs.

Watched the video (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28693581)

First it made me yawn... then it made me almost throw up. Throw up, because it looked like World of Warcraft and everything was dark and gloomy like most of Wrath of the Lich King.

Just for that reason alone, I wouldn't touch that game even if *they* paid me $1000 per month.

What were they thinking? Just copy WoW and we'll have a cash cow?

Re:Watched the video (1)

gubers33 (1302099) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693737)

Honestly, doesn't really look too much like WoW. It is a fantasty MMORPG so you can draw comparisons quiet easily, but in terms of the graphics and what they they aren't overwhelmingly a like. And there is a light and a dark gloomy side of the the game depending on which you choose to be a part of, read the synopsis, so you can at least post semi educated. I'll agree that the inventory and health gauges and windows are nearly mirror images, but so many other MMORPGs have the same dashboard making it hard to criticize. I don't play WoW anymore and have no intention to purchase or play this game, but any Fantasy MMORPG is going to draw comparison with WoW, but none will be able to beat it. Someone needs to find a new niche market to exploit in MMORPGs.

What... money not good enough for you? (1, Informative)

Petersko (564140) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693901)

"Just for that reason alone, I wouldn't touch that game even if *they* paid me $1000 per month"

Are you really that wealthy? If not, what the hell's wrong with you?

I make a pretty good living, and not only would I touch it for $1000 per month, I'd play it for an hour even if I disliked it.

I know, I know. Figure of speech (sort of). It's just a particularly asinine one.

Game is unplayable by all inelligent users (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28693607)

Given the presence of a rootkit that makes SecuRom look like unicorn dander and faery farts, I'll pass, thanks.

Re:Game is unplayable by all inelligent users (5, Informative)

Selfbain (624722) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693697)

This is what he's referring to:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GameGuard [wikipedia.org]

After reading that, there's no way I'd install Aion.

Re:Game is unplayable by all inelligent users (5, Interesting)

mail2345 (1201389) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693853)

*Looks at the wikipedia entry*:
Hides the process, monitors the memory for stuff, blocks calls to Direct X and the Windows API, places hooks into dlls , sometimes breaks in Win7, breaks Google Chrome, SpeedFan, Eclispe, various drivers, Steam, anti-rootkits(but that was expected). Oh, and a security problem to top it all off.
The bright side is that Aion works on Win7.
And I expected something this bad to come from EA first.

Re:Game is unplayable by all inelligent users (2, Funny)

Tei (520358) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694259)

I have AION, and none of these problems.

Also, Botting is a social problem, not a tecnical one, so sould be stoped by Game Masters, not by a rootkit program. So I think this gameguard is stupid. But again... I have AION, and nothing has stoped to w|

Re:Game is unplayable by all inelligent users (1)

electrosoccertux (874415) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694455)

*Looks at the wikipedia entry*:

Hides the process, monitors the memory for stuff, blocks calls to Direct X and the Windows API, places hooks into dlls , sometimes breaks in Win7, breaks Google Chrome, SpeedFan, Eclispe, various drivers, Steam, anti-rootkits(but that was expected). Oh, and a security problem to top it all off.

The bright side is that Aion works on Win7.

And I expected something this bad to come from EA first.

Confused-- why would they need DRM for an online subscription game?

Re:Game is unplayable by all inelligent users (3, Insightful)

S77IM (1371931) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694553)

It's not DRM -- it's anti-cheating software. So if you are running some sort of scripting or bot program, this thing scans your memory, identifies that program, and kills it. It periodically downloads new identifications for new types of cheat programs.

I understand their goals (nobody likes cheaters), but I don't see how this differs in substance from giving full control of your computer over to INCA Internet. I guess that's no different than handing over the keys to Microsoft, and to Nod32 or AVG or whoever does your antivirus -- except that an operating system and antivirus software are supposed to benefit you, while this thing...?

  -- 77IM

Re:Game is unplayable by all inelligent users (3, Insightful)

S77IM (1371931) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694475)

Holy crap, that shit should be illegal.

I was going to try out Exteel and now I am glad I didn't. Slashvertisement Fail.

    -- 77IM

Re:Game is unplayable by all inelligent users (1)

Endo13 (1000782) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694921)

Great. And I just recently downloaded and installed Chronicles of Spellborn. Wish I'd seen this a few weeks ago.

Re:Game is unplayable by all inelligent users (1)

WarlockD (623872) | more than 5 years ago | (#28695257)

Yea GameGuard is crap. I am using Windows RC x64 and it HATES it. I had to download some cracked gamegard files so it could run update itself properly THEN it works. I am not agents anti-cheat measures, but if its not even working right on a clean install then how the heck are you going to keep up with the cheaters?

GameGaurd v. PunkBuster ?? (1)

Archfeld (6757) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693941)

Not that I am installing it either, but how is GameGuard really any different from PunkBuster, which sets itself up as a service and continues to run in auto mode even after a restart ? Granted there was an click to install window for punkbuster and it seems gameguard may go in the back door so to speak, but they both auto-update silently, and accomplish...or try to accomplish the same thing.

Re:GameGaurd v. PunkBuster ?? (1)

Shads (4567) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694033)

PunkBuster works... sometimes.

Re:GameGaurd v. PunkBuster ?? (2, Informative)

donaggie03 (769758) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694585)

Because every game I've ever bought that had PunkBuster included gave me the OPTION of installing it.

Re:Game is unplayable by all inelligent users (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28694113)

Yeah... it's a great game except that it's NCsoft. Gameguard is in all NCsoft games... and that isn't the only bad thing about NCsoft heh.

Re:Game is unplayable by all inelligent users (2, Informative)

Endo13 (1000782) | more than 5 years ago | (#28695067)

No it's not. Neither CoH/V nor Guild Wars uses it.

Re:Game is unplayable by all inelligent users (1)

mhauer (28158) | more than 5 years ago | (#28695087)

Thanks to GameGuard I struggled for almost a week trying to beta test Huxley, without success. Several people were having the same problem and we got no help from the official forums. I uninstalled the whole mess and never looked back.

Knowing that Aion will use the same PoS makes me file it under "Don't waste your time".

Re:Game is unplayable by all inelligent users (1)

Fozzyuw (950608) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694499)

Huh, nProtect will terminate applications IT determines IT doesn't want to run on MY computer? WTF? I don't mind it blocking DirectX calls, I want things to go back to OpenGL. =P But seriously, this give me pause, and I'll have to reconsider playing this game.

I hope that SWTOR doesn't do things this drastic, because I'm really looking forward to that game.

Re:Game is unplayable by all inelligent users (1)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 5 years ago | (#28695097)

Given the presence of a rootkit that makes SecuRom look like unicorn dander and faery farts, I'll pass, thanks.

Okay but I'm allergic to both those things (and many other fey creature emnations).

back in my day... (-1, Offtopic)

Em Emalb (452530) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693671)

Back in my day, we didn't even have days. We just had nights, we were too poor to afford days. Heck, sometimes we could barely afford to pay attention.

What was I saying? Oh yeah. Back in my day, we had nights. Not days. But we liked it that way. And we didn't have no fancy-schmanzy graphics for our video games. In fact, we didn't even have screens. We had dirt and sticks and used our imagination. But it was damned hard to do, sonny-Jim, cause it was always night...cause we couldn't afford to pay for daylight. Well, I do remember we got daylight twice back in Naught three, but that's cause Al Gore's dad, you might remember him, built a name for himself in the Lincoln Log industry, anyway, ole Pappy Gore felt bad about all us kids playin in the dark all the time, so he traded some Lincoln Logs for daylight from Johnie Rockefeller and we got to actually SEE the dirt we was drawin in. That was a great couple of days. I set two high scores those two days.

*sighs wistfully*

Go get your Grandpa his teeth, will ya sonny-Jim?

Re:back in my day... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28693797)

I think you mean in ought three, not "naught".

Re:back in my day... (1)

Em Emalb (452530) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693823)

0 = naught=nothing.

And some mod has no sense of humor.

Re:back in my day... (1)

hoooocheymomma (1020927) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694189)

Quit it, it's ought. Ought means zero as well as naught, but to abbreviate a year, you would say ought, not naught. Gawd look what you made me write.

Re:back in my day... (2, Funny)

Em Emalb (452530) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694421)

You win.

I concede.

The day is yours, Trebec.

Re:back in my day... (2, Informative)

Quothz (683368) | more than 5 years ago | (#28695173)

Quit it, it's ought. Ought means zero as well as naught, but to abbreviate a year, you would say ought, not naught. Gawd look what you made me write.

"Aught" [merriam-webster.com] and "naught" [merriam-webster.com] both mean zero, and either are acceptable in any context. "Ought" [merriam-webster.com] implies an obligation. Using "ought" as a variant of "aught" [merriam-webster.com] is archaic.

I doubt it (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28693683)

WoW will hold the MMORPG throne for Aions.

Re:I doubt it (1)

hoooocheymomma (1020927) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694209)

What kind of world are we living in where a comment like this doesn't get modded 5 funny? Or at least -1 troll?

Alternate Universe? (5, Insightful)

Tyler Eaves (344284) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693685)

Since when is EVE a shining example of a MMO UI? EVO works (for some people) very much *despite* the cluttered, poorly laid out, typographically flawed UI.

Re:Alternate Universe? (3, Insightful)

sporkmonger (922923) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693761)

I couldn't agree more. Eve is my MMO of choice, but I would kill to be able to extend/improve the UI.

Re:Alternate Universe? (1)

DMUTPeregrine (612791) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694251)

Exactly. EVE is a good game, but not because of the UI.

Re:Alternate Universe? (5, Insightful)

cthulu_mt (1124113) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693785)

I stare at a spreadsheet all day. Then I go home, boot up EVE and stare at a spreadsheet.

Re:Alternate Universe? (4, Funny)

vertinox (846076) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694559)

I stare at a spreadsheet all day. Then I go home, boot up EVE and stare at a spreadsheet.

(In his best melodramatic voice)

Spreadsheets in SPAAAAAAAAAAACE!

Re:Alternate Universe? (1)

rgviza (1303161) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694991)

LOL or stare at rocks getting shot with laser beams. Now THAT'S exciting.

Re:Alternate Universe? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28693843)

You know this evil kings, who get a kick out of being abusive and repressive?

That's God-King Eve the I for you.

Re:Alternate Universe? (2, Insightful)

Rennt (582550) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694327)

The EVE UI might not be to your taste, but you can't say it isn't complete.

Considering the nature of the corporation-based gameplay, desktop metaphor works really well. It is actually configured very much the same way as I have my fluxbox install, so the whole thing is pretty seamless and feels very natural.

Sure, it takes a month (or three) of use before you get the most out of it, but it really is user-friendly. (in the vi sense, not the notepad sense)

Having said that, an open-source client would rock!

Re:Alternate Universe? (1)

vertinox (846076) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694591)

Since when is EVE a shining example of a MMO UI? EVO works (for some people) very much *despite* the cluttered, poorly laid out, typographically flawed UI.

You need a wide screen monitor with a resolution of 1650x1080 to really not feel cramped in EVE.

But if you got one of those then its not too shabby.

Re:Alternate Universe? (3, Interesting)

east coast (590680) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694753)

You need a wide screen monitor with a resolution of 1650x1080 to really not feel cramped in EVE.

In some ways you're right but in other ways it really doesn't matter.

The vast majority of what happens on "the screen" in EVE is simply eye candy.

The concept of actually flying your ship over selecting targets on the objects list and being auto piloted there is pointless. The flight sim aspect of EVE is a waste. Sadly this is what made the space sim genre great in the first place (I recall nearly pissing myself the first time playing Elite on the C=64)

Beyond that all you have is a bunch of text boxes. Seriously, what do you miss in the game outside of those boxes? The game is beautiful in terms of graphics but I've never seen a game with a GUI that uses it less. Once you step outside of the HUD data there's nothing to do but look around and admire some graphical artists work.

And that's the suck thing about the patch that was done in the last month or two. I used to play on an old tablet but their new client made it unplayable because the graphics chipset didn't support pixel shader 2.0 (I believe it was 2.0). But why not? Why not leave a stripped down HUD version of the game? I know that maintaining multiple clients has to be a pain for them but come on... I can play the game just as well from nothing but the HUD data and not miss out on anything as far as the true core of the game play.

eve meets wow? (2, Insightful)

nitehawk214 (222219) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693687)

Blah, I mean can we at least pretend to come up with some original ideas?

I guess original ideas don't make money these days.

Re:eve meets wow? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28693711)

Because EVE and WoW were just SOOOO original :rolleyes:.

WoW is far from original (1)

SilverJets (131916) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693887)

Don't kid yourself. WoW isn't original at all. It is a copy of every previous MMO (all the way back through MUDs) and even pencil and paper D&D.

Re:WoW is far from original (1)

Shads (4567) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694001)

Nothing is original it can all be floated back to 7 basic stories (or is it 9? shrug) using that theory. *rolls eyes*

WoW wasn't tremendously innovative, however it did implement some innovative ideas (at its release). What it really did was show a level of polish at release most game releases lacked. It had an interesting game world that a lot of people were familiar with and loved and easily recognisable class functions that weren't tremendously complex to play (unlike say eq1, uo, ac, or daoc by comparison) that increased its playability considerably.

WoW and EVE both innovated at least some degree, especially when compared to the MMOs that followed them.

Re:WoW is far from original (1)

LandDolphin (1202876) | more than 5 years ago | (#28695225)

I seem to remember issues, downtime, and unfinished content at WoW's release. I beleive what has made WoW work so well was not the release as much as having a large following (Millions of people owned Blizzard titles) and that they have allways been evolving the game to include more (New content, battlegrounds, arena's, etc). Sure, its far more complicated that that, but I beleive those two things have far more to do with their success then a smooth release.

Re:eve meets wow? (1)

pinkj (521155) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693893)

how about a Katamari Damacy themed MMORPG? "Dzie Dobry, loser Prince! Roll up that person's cat for me and I'll give you a scarf!"

More like WoW meets WoW (1)

Pinky's Brain (1158667) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694193)

What sets Eve apart is the single shard server and player made factions ... neither of these is in the game.

It's more like WoW minus battlegrounds&arenas and a larger Lake Wintergrasp and less focus on end game raiding (although in the end they will put in PvE end game raiding anyway, just like Warhammer). I don't see anything Eve like in it.

A Waste of Developer Time (3, Interesting)

WeekendKruzr (562383) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693829)

Most of these companies have the wrong idea. When I place an MMO, I'm usually using a visual angle that has me looking at a downward angle toward my character from above. Generally speaking, I miss all of the impressive scenic stuff. Occasionally yes, I do stop and admire the visuals or I may stop and look up if I'm searching for something. However I think most of these companies are wasting most of their talent on impressive visuals when in fact I would prefer these two things much more:
1)A game that looks good on something less than a top of line GPU - I would prefer graphic efficiency to graphic splendor. When you have 10-15 guys running around a raid inside of a huge environment with 50 monsters and lots of trees and other stuff my FPS grind to a halt. This then leads me to turn down the detail defeating all the effort these guys put in to their product. My system is a dual core with a ATI 4870 GPU, it still stutters unless I turn down the details.
2)Easy guild management tools for Guild Leaders - How about giving me some tools to manage my guild more effectively especially when I'm not online? Being able to assign a guild quest to somebody so they will go gather some resources fore the bank even when I'm not online would be nice. A lot of players will only do this when I'm online cajoling them in to it. How about using the quest journal like a PDA or a digital organizer?

Re:A Waste of Developer Time (2, Insightful)

pance (1374075) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693965)

#2 seems like it would be a good idea for a WoW addon.

Re:A Waste of Developer Time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28694079)

I agree, stunning visuals place immense technical limits on a game that can severely limit play - anyone remember Iron Forge 2-3 months after WoW opened up? FPS grinded to a halt for the most beastly of machines. Whereas I can participate in Guild vs Guild action in other MMOs (Ragnarok Online for example) with 200-300+ characters on my screen fighting and not lag a bit.

Gameplay should always come before graphics, sadly, that rarely happens with new games.

Re:A Waste of Developer Time (2, Insightful)

nschubach (922175) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694125)

That's why I'd kill for another well done first person MMO like EQ was (originally.) It was a pleasure to go to a new dungeon and they weren't afraid to make small passages because the camera would have a hard time seeing... I don't care if you couldn't see behind you all the time, a flick of the mouse and you could look around.

Re:A Waste of Developer Time (1)

hoooocheymomma (1020927) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694283)

If you're a guild leader then you're probably so hardcore into the game that you're already hooked to the game and you're willing to fumble through horrible management UIs.

Game developers don't need to get your attention. They need to get the attention of a bunch of half-witted 12-year-olds and a bunch of 28-year-old guys' girlfriends in order to build up a big enough subscription base in order to earn the first 'M' in MMO.

I think you're making the mistake of assuming that what is right for a minority such as yourself is what will save a fledgeling MMO. I would bet good bones or clams that you're wrong.

Re:A Waste of Developer Time (1)

AP31R0N (723649) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694471)

Check out PlanetSide, an MFPS. Your machine should find it very easy.

Re:A Waste of Developer Time (1)

aafiske (243836) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694699)

Actually Aion looks pretty impressive even on modest gpus, and that's with dozens and dozens of people running around. So I hear. :-"

Re:A Waste of Developer Time (1)

Vohar (1344259) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694977)

Yeah, the thing that impressed me most from the beta has been how smoothly the game runs, even with large numbers of players in a small area. When the first beta event opened, there were literally 8 or more players for every enemy in the starting area. The first town had over a dozen people standing at every class trainer and vendor. And I still didn't lag up.

The rest of the game didn't really grab me, but I was very impressed at the engine itself.

And it was very purty too.

Re:A Waste of Developer Time (1)

east coast (590680) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694965)

Being able to assign a guild quest to somebody so they will go gather some resources fore the bank even when I'm not online would be nice. A lot of players will only do this when I'm online cajoling them in to it.

So basically you want bots to do the dirty work that your guildies are unwilling to do? Seriously, how do you expect this to work in a real game environment?

I guess this is a reason I was never into the who guild scene. I belonged to a very loose organization in EQ2 that was really nothing but a gang of friends who helped each other from time to time. I know that if I were being outright forced to do a task when the guild leader couldn't be bothered to show up I wouldn't have a long career with that guild.

And I think that's part of the game too. It's an aspect of what some consider fun and what some don't. Some people like to manage and pull the strings. Some people don't mind helping a friend but don't want to be beholden to showing up at a certain time of day to do the bidding of others. Some people like just going out there and beating something up with no strings attached. Maybe you're going for the wrong form of play for the kind of person you are? If leading a group of unwilling people to do undesirable work doesn't get your blood pumping my guess is that being the leader of a guild and expecting people to do real work with little payback won't be all that rewarding. Maybe you need to either leave the guild concept behind you or find a guild that's more an association of friends who like to joke around and be goofs above being the first group to raid some new zone the second an expansion goes live.

Guild mastering should be fun. It's a game. Once games stop being fun it's time to let it go for at least a little while.

Aion fever (1)

cAllison (1191803) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693875)

Every once in a while a game comes along that gets my heart racing. Last game: Age of Conan... what a let down... Now Aion, I'm hopefull for this game even more because I was a huge Lineage 2 fan. Games like WoW don't appeal to me (only) because of their fanbase, fortunately there stuck in WoW. Hopefully Aion's community will be full of winners *crossfinger*. Plus for some reason endurance mob-grinding is fun for me.

Re:Aion fever (1)

Shads (4567) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693929)

If the beta was any indication, I'd move along. It was at best describable as "the worst of the barrens" most of the times with rampant kill stealing and other lovely fun behavior.

Re:Aion fever (1)

cAllison (1191803) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694179)

Beta won't actually be any indication, as cramming the entire player base into a couple of zones, as in this beta or first couple months of any MMO launch, will have this effect. Once the WoW fanboys don't renew their sub and go back to WoW, is when we'll see how the game is gona end up. I'm hopeful despite any nay-sayer.

Re:Aion fever (1)

pwfffff (1517213) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694137)

Millions upon millions of players in WoW and you couldn't find ANY you liked?

Yeah, good luck in Aion. I'm sure their players are from Mars, or somewhere else where they might be up to your standards.

Re:Aion fever (1)

cAllison (1191803) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694315)

I didnt say that, actually, but yes. It's easier to find core friends amongst 10,000 then 10,000,000. Plus it'll be the one's who reject the "fashionable" MMO for one they like despite the critics, who I'll game with. What I can't figure out is why you care so much about my befriending algorithm.

Re:Aion fever (1)

pwfffff (1517213) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694639)

"Plus it'll be the one's who reject the 'fashionable' MMO for one they like despite the critics, who I'll game with."

You shop at Hot Topic too, don't you?

meh (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28693877)

There is nothing unique or wonderful about this game, it's "yet another rehash" of any of the dozen other games out there.

I'm not saying its a bad game, it just offers nothing worthwhile other than a change of scenery and backstory.

I think they need to start developing evolving worlds and quit developing games. Quests should be a one time occurrence.

Goblins start raiding supply caravans from one city to the next. In the city over there is a shortage of x, y, z now... players can be recruited to make up that difference via tradeskills. In the mean time in the first city the merchants are losing merchandise and are interested in getting any of it that is salvageable back, players can do that, so can mercenary npcs. They go kill off a large portion of the goblins, recover the goods, but the goods are already replaced in the second city so the price on goods goes way down, and now there are excessive mercenaries in the city with nothing to do so they over throw the local government/become drunken louts in the bars/etc so on and so forth. Make every person, place, and thing in the world respond to the events around it... a player murders a npc or pc, they should suffer the consequences if they get caught, warrants go out on their head, make a death system that makes some sense (legends of kesmai had a cool one compared to any current mmo), make a rebirth and reincarnation system (ala batmud)... there is so much more mmo's could be doing and they seem to all get stuck in the mud with "lets be a clone of wow (or previously eq) that won't take 1% of their population." It's completely absurd at this point.

Innovate, not duplicate.

There is room for polish, a lot of room, but to make it effective you need to be at least reasonably accessible and you need to be innovative in at least a few areas. EVE does a lot of things right (but I'm not interested in space sims), and I'm looking forward to World of Darkness just for that reason... hopefully they don't screw the pooch.

Re:meh (1)

Shads (4567) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693907)

meh, my post forgot to login.

Zone free open world ? (1)

aepervius (535155) | more than 5 years ago | (#28693921)

The developper kind of disagree, as per the article on spirit master : Spirits persist, rather than being short-term and useful for only one fight. Once your character summons a spirit, it stays with your character until it dies, the spirit dies, you log out, or your character crosses into a new zone. It sound it will be as much zone free as other MMO are. Visually you can go from one place to the next seemlessly, but there are still zones.

Re:Zone free open world ? (1)

jandrese (485) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694121)

I've never understood why MMO developers love to build pet classes, but then can't figure out how to make the pets persist when you switch to a different server (cross zones). This can't be that hard of a problem.

A what? (-1, Troll)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694077)

One of the most promising MMORPGs in development these days is NCSoft's Aion, a fantasy-based...

That's where I stopped reading TFS. Why does it always have to be fantasy?

I have the feeling, that religion, fantasy and being dumb go hand in hand somehow, and that this is, why there is so much fantasy stuff popping up in the last years.

Where are all the sci-fi MMOs? Are there really so few people who prefer things that could actually really happen or that a bit of make sense in the basic physical way?

I wish those games would have two views (think database views). One where you play in a sci-fi world, maybe others, and one for the retards, with fairies, magic and all. (There. I said it. It's retarded. Go ahead, mod me troll. It's still true, and your non-logical reaction proves it even more.) The analogies are so strong, it would probably pose no problem at all. ^^

Re:A what? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28694269)

except for Eve, they all either tanked or were cancelled before release, because nobody wants to play stupid sci-fi games.

Re:A what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28694987)

Sci-fi? Hell, I'd kill for a steampunk MMO.

Re:A what? (2, Informative)

julesh (229690) | more than 5 years ago | (#28695249)

You mean like this one [gamigo.com] ?

Re:A what? (1)

The Moof (859402) | more than 5 years ago | (#28695127)

The Old Republic [swtor.com] is what you'd be looking for (some time in the future). There's plenty of sci-fi MMO's out there. Even NCSoft had Tabula Rasa for a while. The quality of sci-fi MMO's is usually not too good. I have hope for the Old Republic.

Due to it's DRM I literally can't play. (5, Informative)

harl (84412) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694143)

In some issues Windows XP users may have problems with GameGuard due to the fact that the same "Windows Product Key" is installed on two computers and on the same router.

Both my machines have the same product key. Both are 100% fully legal. Both are on the same router.

I am doing nothing wrong yet their DRM will prevent me from playing the game.

Eastern fantasy theme (4, Interesting)

rpillala (583965) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694175)

I've wondered for a long time why none of these MMO games from Asia (Lineage, Lineage II, Aion, Granado Espada, etc) have an art direction from mythology and fantasy of the region. It's all a baroque looking western fantasy setting. Finely decorated plate armors, massive double bladed swords and axes etc. Personally, I think samurai look great, katanas, japanese armor, martial arts inspired magic ala Avatar (I know, it's not magic, it's bending). I know that the east Asia has more cultural diversity than I'm describing.

The only games I can remember that tried an art direction like that were Jade Empire, Throne of Darkness and, oddly, Summoner. I think Jade Empire did pretty well, but no word on a sequel from the company that gave us Neverwinter Nights 2, KOTOR 2, and is giving us Mass Effect 2.

TOD and Summoner are both relatively old games, and even though Throne of Darkness was made by a lot of Blizzard vets, it didn't do that well at the store I don't think. Certainly not well enough for Click Entertainment [mobygames.com] to make more games or even exist anymore. Summoner got a sequel, but I don't know if they kept the art direction. I guess Red Alert 3 has some anime influence in one faction.

If we expand into console games while we're on the subject of Summoner, there was Shenmue and I guess any fighting game.

This is all just from memory so I'm happy to be shown as wrong and learn about some good games I might have missed or forgotten.

Re:Eastern fantasy theme (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28694431)

Perfect World and Silkroad Online are notable examples of Asia-themed games, if you want to look into those.

Re:Eastern fantasy theme (1)

blahplusplus (757119) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694573)

"I've wondered for a long time why none of these MMO games from Asia (Lineage, Lineage II, Aion, Granado Espada, etc) have an art direction from mythology and fantasy of the region"

Because western aesthetic is more universal, game companies research this kind of thing they want the WIDEST market possible. Also over half of World of warcraft subscribes are asian, so it's obvious that certain aesthetics have universal appeal.

Re:Eastern fantasy theme (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28694857)

The latest patch includes gear based on Japanese kimonos, Chinese and Taiwanese dress, both male and female.

Re:Eastern fantasy theme (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28694867)

I would think because it is exotic to them. Knights in shining armour and broadswords and axes are part of our history and thus boring to us. Samurai/eastern martial artists/eastern mythology is boring to them because it's part of thier everyday thing. It isn't new or exciting.

Re:Eastern fantasy theme (1)

Vohar (1344259) | more than 5 years ago | (#28695009)

I saw a video a while back for Blade and Soul, another one being put out by NCSoft. It had more of an Eastern theme to the art and sound designs. Pretty entertaining video, too.

i'm in the beta (2, Interesting)

AP31R0N (723649) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694347)

So far i can say, like Guild Wars (also by NC Soft)... it is gorgeous. It makes WoW look like a cat turd vomited by the dog. i didn't get far enough in to play with flight, but it's pretty fun. i'm looking forward to the next round.

However comma it's still just like all the other fantasy MRPGs. Grinding, twinking, gold farming, inane quests for golden rat spleens that change nothing. WoW - Warhammer look + Guild Wars look + Flying. Adding flight and gorgeous graphics isn't enough to make it truly different than all the other life drains for me. i prolly wouldn't play it for more than a few hours a week for a month or two.

i'm waiting for a replacement to PlanetSide. Something that involves... skill, teamwork, strategy, tactics, etc.

GW used instancing beautifully to move your character *through* the story. In other games, no matter how many golden rats you kill, there are always more. The NPCs don't seem to notice, neither does the story.

Re:i'm in the beta (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28694979)

So far i can say, like Guild Wars (also by NC Soft)... it is gorgeous. It makes WoW look like a cat turd vomited by the dog. i didn't get far enough in to play with flight, but it's pretty fun. i'm looking forward to the next round.

However comma it's still just like all the other fantasy MRPGs. Grinding, twinking, gold farming, inane quests for golden rat spleens that change nothing. WoW - Warhammer look + Guild Wars look + Flying. Adding flight and gorgeous graphics isn't enough to make it truly different than all the other life drains for me. i prolly wouldn't play it for more than a few hours a week for a month or two.

i'm waiting for a replacement to PlanetSide. Something that involves... skill, teamwork, strategy, tactics, etc.

GW used instancing beautifully to move your character *through* the story. In other games, no matter how many golden rats you kill, there are always more. The NPCs don't seem to notice, neither does the story.

Dear aunt, let's set so double the killer delete select all

Well, does it run linux? (0, Offtopic)

EsbenMoseHansen (731150) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694429)

No? Well, then i'll pass, thanks :)

Re:Well, does it run linux? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28694509)

You won't be missed. Thanks. :D

Off Topic Sig Correction (-1, Offtopic)

AP31R0N (723649) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694733)

- Atheism is not a religion, it is the absence of religion.

No. It's the absence of belief in god(s), nothing more or less.

- Agnosticism is the absence of decisiveness.

No. It's the absence of KNOWLEDGE of god(s), nothing more or less.

One concerns belief, the other is about knowledge. Knowledge and belief are different.

A Venn Diagram of atheists and agnostics would look like two discs stacked almost exactly on top of each other. The idea that agnostic is some sort of halfway position is a pop culture myth. It's also a myth that atheists believe there are no gods.

Don't be fooled by dictionaries either. Dictionaries record how words are USED (rightly or wrongly), not just what they mean. If people used 'bagel' to mean "stuff a cabbage in your ear on Tuesday", Webster would create an entry for it. Fucking descriptivists.

All living people are agnostic. They might believe there are gods, they might even belief they KNOW there are gods, but they don't actually know. Some people are honest enough to admit it, so aren't.

Here is the test:
Do you KNOW god(s) exist(s)?

If the answer is no, you're agnostic.

Do you HOLD a belief that god(s) exist(s)?

If the answer is no, you're atheist.

Most people who say no to one would say no to the other. It's hard to imagine someone saying they know gods exist but don't believe they do. Virtually all atheists are agnostic and vice versa.

Why does it matter?

Whenever we use words incorrectly we reinforce that mistake and encourage spreading it. We lose meaning and distinction as we make words less and less meaningful. We non-believers have a hard enough time dealing with zealots who misuse words that we shouldn't make it worse. If we get people to understand what these words actually mean (and what they DON'T mean) we can maybe get them to understand rather than assume. Many theists think that atheism means denial of god(s), when that's just not the case. Some people mistakenly think that agnostic is some sort of safe/golden mean... it isn't. It's just an adjective that names the state on not knowing there are gods.

 

Played for two days (in the beta) (1)

lbbros (900904) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694563)

To be frank, I found Aion incredibly boring. Most quests are "collect X amounts of Y" or "kill Y enemies" and they are just text to read at, and even the "story" quests present cutscenes that are bland to say the least (this is an area where FFXI, with all its faults and limits, is still strong). Also, literally zero interactions with the other players: for the time I looked it at, Aion just seemed like an online version of Diablo (style of play wise), and for sure I'm not even thinking about paying a subscription for this type of play style.

NCSoft? (3, Insightful)

freedan (1382597) | more than 5 years ago | (#28694811)

Aka the developer that releases like 2 new and utterly generic MMOs every single year? Forgive me for not getting too excited.

What sets it apart? (1)

MindlessAutomata (1282944) | more than 5 years ago | (#28695039)

OK, ignoring the bullshit rootkit, what sets Aion apart from other MMOs?

inaccurate summary (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28695071)

Hey 'Soulskill,'

Have you even bothered to play the beta? An expansive open world world? Really? I don't call one-path linear progression (with cliff walls and forests that prevent you from straying off the path) open and expansive.

And it makes heavy use of flight? No, no it doesn't, as you can't fly in approximately 3/4 of the game world, including capital cities, starting zones, and almost everywhere except the smallish pvp area known as the abyss.

Flight is also on a timer that rarely exceeds 3 minutes.

Do some research you fucking shill.

Usability Kings? (3, Insightful)

Thaelon (250687) | more than 5 years ago | (#28695117)

he genre's usability kings, EVE Online and World of Warcraft

You've got to be shitting me. Surely you mean World of Warcraft and Warhammer Online, instead.

Don't get me wrong, I'm a bigger fan of EVE than World of Warcraft. But the EVE GUI has been shit since inception. And Customer UI suggestions go completely ignored for literally years [eve-online.com] , and that's just one thread that was alive for years with no sign of improvement.

EVE is wonderfully good at many things (nowhere else will you hear the term "pvp shakes"), and I've been in battles of over 1000 players with the game completely playable, but the UI?! That's their biggest failing.

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