2. World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King
(PC; Massive-Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game (MMORPG); Online-Only)Overview
I played WoW for exactly 1 hour and 28 minutes from the beginning, using a level 1 Dwarf Paladin. While I played for my hour, I completed 12 quests, killed roughly 134 enemies, killed 6 innocent bunnies, looted nearly 3 gold worth of items, looted 4 chests, learned 6 different skills, used only 2 weapons, and gained 6 levels. So, I ended with 4 silver, 4 usable skills, and the total level of 7.Positives/Gameplay Successes
+ The key mapping is nice, but confusing at first due to the unobvious menu-buttons such as using "O" to open up the friend's menu. Other than some obvious button choice confusion (which is 100% customizable to the player), the other buttons for movement are straightforward with the arrow keys to move and right mouse-click to attack. You can also open your backpack with the "B" key. The option to use “hotkeys” 0-9 is very useful when obtaining more skills.
+ The looting feature is very useful and so intuitive that most online role-playing games have gone to the same method. Pretty much, you right-click on a dead body (whom you just killed) using the mouse, an interface menu pops up, and you left-click on the items you want to take using the mouse. It is a simple method, and World of Warcraft made excellent use of it. This is one of the features that has not been touched since the first release.
+ The aggro AI for the monsters is very simple, yet effective. I like how you can run by a high-level mob at a low level and they will run after you from a sickening distance, whereas they will stand at attention if you are 5-8 levels higher than they are. Simple, yet effective when it comes to staying around mobs your level.
+ The talent system developed while this game was still new mastered the ease of distibuting points into customizing your character. You leveled up, you gained a point, you opened a menu with talents, you put your point in a talent that you thought might benefit you in the long run. If you did not like the "build" you created, then you are able to pay a small in-game price and start over. This makes customization dumbed down for players who just want to play.
+ The quest system is pretty standard when it comes down to it, but I really like how the quest log gives you detailed information along the lines of the storyline for the quest as they give you strict details on where you need to go in order to complete the quest. The strict details are then laid out for you so you know exactly where to go, who to kill, what to collect, and who you need to talk to next.Negatives/Gameplay Failures
- When the enemy dodges one of your moves, you must wait for an entire attack phase to swing again. This makes for long battles of healing with my character since he is using a two-handed mace for attacking. If I miss at all, the enemy has more of a chance to hit me twice before I can swing again.
- Walking is really slow and it makes getting around to complete quests take forever. Unfortunately, most of my time was spent walking around and talking to NPCs.
- When you run around in circles around an enemy while attacking them, nothing changes. This is really irritating to the player as you would expect running around frantically would make the enemy have a much more difficult time attacking you. When you fight an enemy, it does not matter which way you are running to them, but as soon as you turn your back, a message pops up and says that you are facing the wrong way. I would expect the same from an animal you just recently ran around would not be able to attack you; the enemy is stuck on always facing you, always doing the same attack until either you die, run away from their small aggro radius, or kill them.
- Travel times, on top of the walking, is ridiculous! I know that as you progress, you gain mounts to travel faster, but the world is so big that an option to teleport would not be so bad. When you use the flight system to go across the continent, you spend most of that time getting a snack from the fridge because it takes so long. This might be a technique to keep player anticipation high, but I do not like it.
- Player versus environment (PvE) is really lame. Although the newer end-game bosses have cool strategies involved with beating them, most (if not all) mobs are the same fight over and over. They have a name for this, and I do not like to grind. If the enemies were a little more "active" in the fights, it would add some overall strategy to the entire game.Thoughts
(not necessarily likes or dislikes, but instead noteworthy brainstorming)
~ I noticed that gathering quests and killing quests were pretty evenly distributed during my gameplay. This was a nice feature, now that I think about it.
~ When you are focused on killing enemies one at a time for a quest objective, you get lost in the traveling and end up near the next place you need to go. The only unfortunate thing about doing this is the quest-giver is back where you started from, so you do have to walk back either way.
~ At lower levels, not many people like to interact with each other. You are kind of on your own until you start running through instances (dungeons), or other party-driven quests since you can handle a lot of the lower-level mobs alone.
~ Weapon drops are significantly lower than useless crap that even vendors have a hard time giving you money for.
~ Speaking of vendors, I noticed that prices do not vary between cities and towns. This could be very helpful when it comes to predictable costs, but it does take away any challenge you were hoping for in a bartering economy.Would Like/Fixes
* I would LOVE to see better mob fights. I am big into the interactive fighting in games. When you have enemies acting all crazy on you, it makes you want to play more! This is one of the reasons I play against other players (another brain-powered character you can fight against), I love making people work for their glory in-game. I like the challenge behind it.
* Less walking, more story. If they could find a way to keep all of the features and gameplay time without all of the walking, the game would be awesome! I understand that battlegrounds and fights require all of that, but during the quest lines, I could use a little faster travel (even if they kept the grinding).
* Balancing classes would make the game a little better, but every class can do their deal of damage and/or healing in the long run. I think that finding the balance of weapons and gear makes any player good/bad, but it does take skill to create a character so good to make people think you are cheating.
* I would not mind seeing the amount of classes come to a limit. For instance, if they made more than just the Death Knight class be unlockable, you would see more players putting quality time into their characters rather than creating the best of the best right away and taking away challenge.
* As an RPG, this game would benefit from a SOLID main story line for avid role-playing gamers. A single player side of the game would make me buy it up in an instant all over again.Conclusion
After my ventures of playing WoW for an hour, I was not able to come up with this huge list. Instead, I have been playing World of Warcraft since it first came out. I have seen the development of the game, I have played the different builds, and I have experience the game from the baby stages. So, I draw some of my complaints/findings from years of playing. I do not play as much now, but I can say that I am not satisfied with some of the directions they went. Overall, this game somehow kept me playing for years, so they did something right, at the very least!