Friday, November 23, 2012

Wizardry Online Beta Impressions

It is no secret that I prefer western MMOs compared to eastern ones. I've had my share of Ragnarok Online, Risk Your Life, Perfect World and all of those grindy asian MMOs but when Wizardry Online was announced I felt a bit intrigued by it. The reason I'm interested in it is because of the game's focus on giving a more challenging dungeon crawling experience.

I'm instantly reminded of Dungeons & Dragons Online which I quite liked because of the challenge and different feel from your usual MMORPG. So when Wizardry Online beta was announced I jumped right in. Sadly, what I've found in Wizardry made me a bit dissapointed.

First, I'm not much of a graphic whore as I have an old PC and I felt that a good MMO(or a good game for that matter) focuses more on gameplay instead of graphics but for a 2012 game Wizardry Online looks very....ugly. The graphic looks like some early 2000s MMO. Heck even Lineage 2 arguably looks better than this. Bad movement animation also made this worse as jumping and general movement seems just strange. And the character customization? it's just ridiculous how a 2012 game can offer so little character customization.

As for combat, well...maybe I'm spoiled by newer and more exciting games like RaiderZ and Guild Wars 2 but the combat in Wizardry Online just feels terrible. Clunky controls and awkward combat mechanics made combat a bit boring in my opinion. It is of course better than the usual target monster and then bash each other for 5 minutes like in WoW or SWTOR but definitely not as good as Guild Wars 2 or RaiderZ.

The one thing that made Wizardry Online interesting is the difficulty and the feature of permadeath, making this game an interesting choice for hardcore gamers who like these kind of stuff. Do note however that I'm not such a person. I like my MMO to be as social as possible with people having the mindset of helping each other. So far, only Guild Wars 2 seems to have successfully enforced this mindset to the mechanics of the game. Wizardry Online seems to went the other direction, where Player Killing and Item Stealing are actually a part of the game. Some people might like this, but this one is a big no no for me. Making a challenging game with deadly traps and the threat of permadeath looming in every corner is okay but the idea of getting killed by other players or getting my items stolen is not really appealing to me. However, as I said I do realize there are people who likes this kind of mechanics and Wizardry Online might be the right game for them.

In short, Wizardry Online would probably be fitting for hardcore players who likes a challenging dungeon crawling experience; but the ugly graphics, bad animation, clunky controls and uninteresting combat really doesn't make this game seems appealing. If you want a challenging dungeon crawling MMORPG I'd suggest you play Dungeons & Dragons Online instead.

Note: do rememebr that this is a First Impression. The game might be more interesting at higher level or they could've probably fixed some of the control problem later on.

If you still want to try Wizardry Online, check HERE
Or, alternatively you can try Dungeons and Dragons Online HERE

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