Tuesday, November 09, 2004

Thoughts On World Of Warcraft

Ok the game gives you access to a few sides and professions which is nice. I chose an undead Warlock as my character because I like to give Magic characters a go every so often and on the splendid intro it has a Warlock commanding a huge undead stone thingy. So I wanted one of those (I don't think you can actually get one of those now, but then I have only been playing for a few days and this is based purely on looking at the skill tree).

The game is filled with quests. Literally you will spend most of your time completing quests. These range from killing a specific number of something (wolves, bats, greater bats etc), to collecting items from dead foes (i.e. you kill a bat and you take a fang and you need five fangs to complete the quest) and the good old messenger / delivery boy quests. Other than these basic types I have had one where I had to use one of the transit systems (buy a ticket to ride on a bat).

The quests all have backstories and after completing one quest you will usually be given another one that follows the story of the previous. This is good because it pushes you to explore the world and with WOW making it so easy to form groups (right click and select invite) short term group quests are kind of fun, but there isn't really any community interaction as I can see, but then I grew out of IRC back in 1995. So just standing around typing 'lol', and 'A/S/L' for hours at a time with general light chatting to AFGCAPs (strangers) isn't my idea of fun anymore.

One of the long standing problems with RPGing is that once you get a quest you have to find the quest area. Most RPGs in recent times have had compasses to the questing area, but WOW does something that I haven't seen before. It gives you a map, ye, and.. Good directions! I know it sounds stupid, but I have played many RPGs now and WOW does this the best. All the towns are signposted and the global map has all the landmarks on (once explored) so you can almost always find what you are looking for.

There is a nice selection of courses and spells, plenty of items. Lots to buy whatever your level. For once I didn't find myself having supply problems which made a nice change and the games areas are kind of split to accommodate players of different leveling brackets. So you start in an area with weak puny bats then after a while you will get a quest to go to another area. By which stage you have leveled up somewhat and can cope with the higherlevel bats in the new area.

The game is constructed well and the graphics although not amazing do have a nice styling to them. Plus the interface is kind of nice once you have gotten used to the unique mouse control's.

When the beta is over I won't be buying WOW because I like games I can complete, and even if WOW has an end it will take you possibly months of playing to get there. So probably a good thing for anyone that is into MMOs then.